CA Sujeet Kumar
With the advent of Digital India, as and when our PM talks about to make a digital India, the pace of technology has been grown up and everywhere Govt. has emphasized on each and every thing in India should be done with technology or should be kept with the help of technology. In the recent time govt. has initiated that we can keep our document online if we have AADHAR Number and this is called DIGILOCKER. In the finance Bill 2015, Govt. has also proposed a provision to have a system to issue the digitally invoice and further maintain all records electronically under Service Tax Rules 1994 and Excise Rules, 2002.
In this regard, Central Govt. on 6th July 2015 has issued Notification No. 18/2015-Central Excise (N.T.) , Dated- 6th July, 2015 under Service ax Rules, 1994 and Central Excise Rules, 2002 where it is prescribed following conditions, safeguards and procedures for issue of invoices, preserving records in electronic form and authentication of records and invoices by digital signatures which is given below:
1. Only Class 2 or Class 3 Digital Signature Certificate duly issued by the Certifying Authority in India shall be used by Person.
2. Every person who want to use Digital Signature, is required to intimate the following details to the jurisdictional AC/DC of Central Excise before fifteen days from the date of issue of digital signature :-
a) name, e-mail id, office address and designation of the person authorised to use the digital signature certificate;
b) name of the Certifying Authority;
c) date of issue of digital certificate and validity of the digital signature with a copy of the certificate issued by the Certifying Authority along with the complete address of the said Authority:
However those who already using Digital Signature, intimate the same detail to the jurisdictional AC/DC of Central Excise within fifteen days of issue of this notification.
3. Person having more than one factory or service tax registration and opts to maintain records in electronic form shall maintain separate electronic records for each factory or each service tax registration.
4. A Central Excise Officer, during an enquiry, investigation or audit, in accordance with the provisions of section 14 of the Central Excise Act, 1944 and as made applicable to Service Tax as per the provisions contained in section 83 of the Finance Act, 1994, may direct an person to furnish printouts of the records in electronic form and invoices and may resume printouts of such records and invoices after verifying the correctness of the same in electronic format; and after the print outs of such records in electronic form have been signed by the person or any other person authorised by the person in this regard, if so requested by such Central Excise Officer.
5. Every person who opts to maintain records in electronic form shall ensure that appropriate backup of records in electronic form is maintained and preserved for a period of 5 years immediately after the financial year to which such records pertain.
Further full text of notification can be seen through given line below: