New Delhi: Biju Janata Dal (BJD) MP Anubhav Mohanty Thursday urged the Union government to exempt District Mineral Foundations (DMF) fund from income tax (I-T) citing that it would increase tax liability on the fund which in turn will adversely affect the upliftment of people belonging to mining affected areas.
Speaking during the Zero Hour in the Lok Sabha, the BJD MP said that the DMF established in every district of Odisha has received substantial amount of contribution. Many projects and activities are being undertaken in the mining-affected villages and for the upliftment affected people by using the DMF fund as per the guidelines, he added.
“At present, income tax is being deducted from the interest on the fund accrued on the ground that is interest income. A total of Rs 8,474.42 crore has been collected under DMF till September 30, 2019 by all the 30 districts and the likely annual accruals to the fund is around Rs 1,800 crore to Rs 2,000 crore. However, Rs 39 crore has been deducted towards Income Tax on interest income of DMFs of some of the districts till September 2019,” Mohanty said.
“Unless the DMF Trust fund is exempted from the purview of the provisions of Income Tax Act, 1961, the DMF Trust fund will attract huge tax liability from inception, and a substantial amount of DMF funds will be spent to clear the I-T liability, which will have a bearing on these resources and will defeat the very objective of the scheme for development of the people in mining-affected areas,” he said.
The Kendrapara MP further said that Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had drawn the attention of the Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs vide his letter dated October 3, 2019 requesting exemption of DMF funds from the incidence of I-T with retrospective effect in the interest of the areas and people affected by mining activities.