23 March 2020
New Delhi: The Ministry of Finance has extended the deadlines for filing returns of goods and services tax (GST) in view of the coronavirus crisis and difficulties faced by taxpayers in meeting the compliance norms.
The due date for filing return in FORM GSTR-3B for February by all registered persons has been extended to April 7, 2020.
A statement by the Central Board of Direct Taxes said that it has been decided to "extend the due date of filing the annual return in FORM GSTR-9 and reconciliation statement for financial year 2018-19 from March 31 to June 30, 2020".
The government has also decided to extend the due date for opting for composition scheme from March 31 to April 7.
Several industry players and chambers were seeking extension in deadline to file returns as the coronavirus outbreak had brought normal life and operations of almost all sectors of the economy to a standstill, which would have a severe financial impact.
The Centre and regulatory authorities have announced several compliance relaxations in the past few days for companies and individuals.
Market analysts have also suggested that there may be a sharp drop in GST collections in March and April due to lockdown across several states in the country. In February, gross GST revenue collection stayed above the Rs 1 lakh crore mark for the fourth consecutive month, at Rs 1.05 lakh crore.
Several states, including Delhi, have announced lockdowns to control the spread of novel coronavirus, and these developments would take a toll on the finances of various sectors of the economy, including restaurants.
As many as 415 people have been tested coronavirus positive in India and so far, with seven deaths.