I could write this column in a slightly relaxed manner thanks to the income tax and GST audit compliance dates being extended to the 31st of December. The joint efforts by the BCAS Taxation and Indirect Tax Committees with other sister bodies, who submitted a timely representation to the Honourable Finance Minister, followed by a well- reasoned press release to the Prime Minister, must have helped. It was a great relief, especially for MSME / SME businesses and small and medium-sized practitioners with the extension coming as a Dussehra bonanza / gift.
‘We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give’ – Winston Churchill.
I wish to refer to the continuing commitment of individuals and institutions to contribute to people’s development which results in improving the quality of life of other individuals, groups and teams, as well as society at large. The BCAS Foundation (BCASF) is an associate charitable arm of the BCAS which is engaged in social responsibility activities. Recently, the Foundation identified and selected social projects in the area of education, including digital, environment and other social objectives which could be undertaken and executed with a perspective of three to five years. We at BCAS and BCASF are enthusiastic about these initiatives and eagerly look forward to doing good work in the social domain. I appeal to members to join this social initiative as volunteers and contribute digitally, physically and / or financially. You may register your details on firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get back to you.
Insofar as the history of human civilization is concerned, digital transformation is considered to be the next giant technological leap forward, similar to internet. The importance of digital transformation has accelerated manifold in the last few months as Covid-19 has brought to the fore the importance of digital technologies, including artificial intelligence (AI), in addressing the healthcare crisis, restarting supply chains, enabling online education and almost every other aspect of the economy. With AI possessing the power to radically transform the economic and social fabric of the world we live in, we need to use it with responsibility for the good of humanity and for inclusive socio-economic development. As the situation stands today, AI can shape how we live, think, consume, vote, read, work and holiday. This brings in the point about holding big tech firms accountable and the need for suitable policy responses.
The flagship event of the BCAS, the 54th Virtual Residential Refresher Course (VRRC) was announced recently. It will be held between 7th and 10th January, 2021 and is open to all Chartered Accountants. The VRRC would offer some innovative and unique features enabled by digitalisation. The detailed programme will be announced soon. But may I request all of you to block the dates and enrol to Participate – Interact (Virtually) – Learn.
As I was closing this page on 28th October, we had an Expert Chat in the form of a Panel Discussion on ‘Post- Covid – Impact on Economy and Capital Markets’. The panellists were Dr. B.K. Bhoi, CA T.N. Manoharan and CA George Joseph with the moderation being done by CA Dipan Mehta; he brought out some excellent facets in the analysis of the pandemic’s impact on the economy and industries and the way forward. All the panellists were optimistic about the economic revival and rebound. They had a similar thought process, that rebooting the economy requires strategy rather than magnitude of stimulus and this is the right time to seize the opportunities when the challenges are daunting. The Expert Chat is available on our YouTube channel BCAS GLOBAL in case you missed the live event.
I take this opportunity to wish a happy, joyous and Prosperous Diwali and New Year to you, your family and your friends. May the festival of lights shower upon each one of us super good health, lasting mental peace and, equally important, plentiful prosperity.
With Best Regards,
CA. Suhas Paranjpe