The National Minority Commission today voiced concern on a proposal in the Direct Tax Code Bill to tax donations for institutions and organisations run by a particular religion or community and is planning to take up the issue with a parliamentary committee examining it. A delegation led by NCM member Keki N Daruwala has sought a meeting with Yashwant Sinha, who heads the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance, this week as it feels that the provision will adversely affect minority institutions.
“This Act will adversely affect donations coming to organisation and institutions run by minority communities. For example, there are only 60,000 Parsis left in India and they would not be able to support the organisations and institutions run by their community,” Daruwala told PTI here. Under this Act, no exemption would be allowed either to the donar or donee in cases of charity, if it is for any particular caste or religion, Daruwala said.”We have sought an appointment with Yashwant Sinha this week to update the Parliamentary Committee on the concern expressed by minority communities over this Bill,” he said. Around two months back, NCM first wrote to the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) saying the Act would harm donation and funds coming to institutions and organisations run by minority communities. “We are also in correspondence with the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) and recently met a Joint Secretary there to voice our concern,” Daruwala said. Not only minority communities, this Act will affect the donations and grants coming to institutions run by other religions, castes and sects, he said. The DTC Bill was introduced in Parliament on August 30 last year to replace the 50-year old Income Tax Act. It proposes to simplify and streamline the income tax regime in the country but has already missed the April 2011 deadline.