No withholding tax on low cost on pay as you go SIM playing cards, recharge vouchers: Supreme Courtroom | Mumbai Information

MUMBAI: In a latest ruling, the Supreme Courtroom (SC) clarified that reductions given on the print value of pay as you go SIM playing cards and recharge coupon vouchers by telecom operators to distributors won’t set off withholding tax obligations below the Earnings-tax legal guidelines.The SC’s resolution, which got here in a batch of appeals with Bharti Mobile because the lead case, settled an argument that had seen conflicting judgments from varied excessive courts.The SC laid out a four-factor take a look at to find out if an entity qualifies as an agent, emphasizing components comparable to authorized energy to bind the principal, management over conduct, fiduciary relationship, and accountability to render accounts and obtain remuneration.EY-India in its publication explains that, on this case, the SC discovered no principal-agent relationship between the distributors and the telecom operators, as distributors had been required to buy the SIM playing cards and vouchers at a reduced value, with the liberty to promote beneath the printed value with out rendering accounts to the telecom operators.The SC clarified that telecom operators weren’t liable to withhold tax as they didn’t credit score or pay any revenue to distributors as fee. It additionally emphasised that the revenue earned by distributors from resale can’t be thought of as oblique cost by the telecom firm.Moreover, the SC famous that the telecom operators, not being aware of contracts between distributors and finish prospects, can’t be anticipated to withhold tax at supply. The SC advisable that the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) challenge clear and potential directions or circulars to keep away from such disputes sooner or later.

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