Indian finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman has just announced the union budget 2019 yesterday and announced some very interesting and new schemes for startups in the country including a Start-ups dedicated television (TV) , which would be indigenously designed by them to solve their issues and promote startups in the country.

The minister said in her speech, "We propose to start a television program within the bouquet of channels exclusively for startups. This shall be dedicated to promote startups, discuss the issues faced by them, bridge the gap between startups and venture capitalists and help in funding and tax planning. This channel shall be designed by startups themselves."

Set up under the purview of govt-owned Doordarshan, the upcoming TV channel will be designed and managed by startups themselves and will promote new businesses and enable matchmaking with venture capitalists helping them raise funds and the channel will also provide resources for tax planning.

With intentions of nurturing and supporting startup activity in India, Sitharaman also announced the extension of 2016-launched "Start Up India, Standup India" Scheme.

Extension of Start Up India Scheme

Highlighting the benefits of the scheme and a large demand by the SC/ST community for the continuance of the scheme, the Start-Up India scheme will now continue covering the entire period coinciding with the 15th Finance commission i.e 2020-2025.

"Stand up India has made human dignity and self-esteem to go up. Ministry of petroleum and gas has enabled SC/ST entrepreneurs by awarding bulk LPG transportation contracts. In a matter of 2 years, 300 entrepreneurs have emerged due to the Stand Up India scheme. Machines and robots have been deployed to do scavenging saving manual scavenger's dignity. The synthesis between Stand Up and Start Up India with commercial brands playing the catalyst has brought about a transformational change," said the finance minister.

The minister also highlighted the upshot in women and SC/ST entrepreneurs who were provided capital under the startup scheme to stand their own ventures.

Sharing the impact of Stand Up India in the Petroleum Industry, Sitharaman said that 300 entrepreneurs had emerged in 2 years, mainly due to the ministry's bulk LPG transportation contracts. She added that commercial brands have helped in being a catalyst to Stand Up and Start Up.

Angel Tax and Startup Investor Scrutiny

Startups and their investors who file their requisite declarations, provide information about their returns will not be subjected to any scrutiny with respect to valuation share premium. The issue of establishing the identity of investors will be resolved by putting in place an e-verification mechanism. With this, the funds raised by startups will not require any scrutiny from the IT department.

In addition, a special arrangement will be made by the Central Board of direct taxes, for pending assessments of startups and redressal of their grievances, ensuring that no verification will be done by the assessing officer without the approval of his supervisory officer. Startups are not required to justify the fair market value of their shares issued to certain investors including Category-1 Alternative Investment Funds (AIF), extending to Category 2 also.

The finance minister also proposed relaxation in carrying forward of losses, extending the period of exemption of capital gains arising on sale of houses to invest in startups up to March 31, 2021.

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