Any guess what this %s could indicate ? Corona deaths ? Corona recoveries ? Economy health ? We have had enough of these parameters ad nauseam. This time I turn my attention and yours to marks percentage scored by children. Amidst the gloom of COVID19 and several other catastrophes, many households in India have been celebrating the success of their children in the 10th and 12th standard board exams. Why not when almost every child seems to be scoring upwards of 90% ? My question is why not even if they score below the coveted 90 ?
This is exactly what one of my dear friends (nay, soul-sister) Alka (name changed) did when her only son scored 81% in the 10th standard boards. After spending sleepless nights waiting for the ‘seemingly life-changing marks’ she broke down with tears of joy. Surprised that 81% is reason to celebrate ? Read on, you will know why. She shared a picture of a cake that she baked lovingly for her son with 81 iced on it with a sheepish comment “Sharada, people must be thinking I am crazy and laughing out loud ..but you can understand the happiness behind this silliness??so sharing it with you”. It was neither silly nor crazy. It was the expression of relief and happiness of a mother who underwent 2 years of agony along with her son thanks to the unforgivable attitude of his school teachers and management. Alka’s son Alaap started deteriorating in his school performance since 9th standard. He started scoring low marks in maths, became the butt of jokes of his classmates, chiding remarks of his teachers and eventually started withdrawing himself from his friends and all forms of socialising. So much so that he stopped talking to his parents as well. Friction between Alka and her husband rose. All her attempts to bring him out of the shell failed. What caused this sudden change in his performance is still not clear but what is clear is that school managements have started treating students as commodities with a price tag, sorry ‘marks tag’. Anyone with a low marks is relegated to the backend, derided and discouraged. Worse still, in this case, the school refused to allow him to even sit for the 9th class exams unless Alaap improved his Math scores. Instead of counselling him and helping him to improve his performance, teachers and management started drilling negative thoughts into his head and questioned his ability to learn math. The child loved math as a subject and didn’t want to opt out of it at any cost, but thanks to the constant bombarding of “No, you cant do it”, he lost all confidence and started going from bad to worse. I was shocked when Alka told me that even as late as in Jan, 20 when he had improved to a large extent (but was still short of the ambitious 90% target of the school) the school was creating trouble to issue his hall-ticket. All this because they felt one single student’s low marks could pull down the overall average of the school scores ! They cannot then claim a 99% or 100% achievement in their marketing collaterals.
For last 2 years I have been with Alka on this journey and have seen her go from pillar to post – exploring alternative schools, specialised tuitions, counselling for son and herself, prayers, visits to temples, secret confessions to friends like me since she couldn’t express her anxiety before her son. All this because some teacher somewhere, some Principal somewhere thought her son is not fit to take the exams. There was communication break-down within the family. Her health failed. Desperation levels hit rock bottom when I heard the boy sometimes showed suicidal tendencies and at yet other times extreme rage at the teachers for belittling him.
Whatever may be the reason for Alaap’s downhill performance, how can a school in a city like Bangalore threaten not to issue hall-ticket ? What right do we as adults have to dampen the spirits of a young 15 year old and mess around with his life ? Long story short. Alaap did pass his math exam with 65% and an overall 81% that has got him an entry to his college of choice. I wish my friend takes up the matter with the school management and highlights the wrongdoing so that other parents and children do not suffer. I am sure you will agree how special this 81% is to a mother who has undergone a school-inflicted trauma for 2 years.
There are many such stories thanks to our illogical education system and the greed of money-making private educational institutions. Hopefully things will get better with the newly announced New Education Policy, 2020. Learning will truly become a joy. School will remain a place with happy memories and life-long relationships. I would like to leave you all with a positive message that these marks hardly matter in the long run. I have heard it before. Experienced it myself. Fully convinced when I recently heard Food Anthropologist, Successful Entrepreneur & Celebrity Chef Sabsyachi Gorai on a webinar being moderated by my son. He said as a dyslexic he failed in Math, English, History, Geography, French and almost in every other subject but he never allowed what others thought about him to get into him. He spoke at ease about profit & loss, funding and many other number-related topics as he addressed young Hotel Management students about opportunities as a Food Entrepreneur. His school teachers may be squirming in their seats and wringing their hands for writing him off back then. No doubt he must be his school role model now. We don’t know which pearl is hidden in which oyster, which diamond is covered in which coal. All that we must do is to uncover and allow our children to bloom to their full potential !!
The highlight of this 242nd issue of Samhita is the article on Consumer Protection Rules for e-comm entities (concluding part of the 2 part series) which highlights the duties and liabilities of both e-comm entities (inventory model and market place) and sellers. Quite elaborate ones that are rightly imposed but not easy to adopt immediately. E-comm companies and seller associations are already seeking clarification and further time for compliance. To understand what exactly they need to put in place, I recommend reading this article contributed by our young team members. Given the growing number of digital players, buyers, sellers and intermediaries it is imperative that these rules are given wide publicity. Since they are consumer centric, translation in other languages would do good. Talking of language, the English left us 74 years ago on the 15th of August, 1947 but not their language. Whether by choice or by compulsion, English continues to rule as the Business Language across India (sorry I am not getting into any debate on the pros and cons of this). Watch out for what the English language teacher at British Council, Mr. Balaji has to share under our language enhancement series “Let’s excel in English”. They are idioms unique to English that spice up our communication, just like the ones native to our own languages. Best way is to start using the words, phrases and idioms we carry in every issue. For any previous issues of Samhita and the readers’ feedback please visit https://sharadasc.com/resource-center/.
"Independence means voluntary restraints and discipline, voluntary acceptance of rule of law." said Mahatma Gandhi. Read together with Dalai Lama’s wisdom about happiness (see our Thought for the Day), it is abundantly clear that to enjoy freedom one must exercise self-restraint and discipline. Wishing each one of you a happy, peaceful and meaningful 74th Independence Day !!
Spouse: Huff. Why do certain things *cost an arm and a leg*?
Spouse: Because they do. We ought to *squirrel away* at times for certain things
Spouse: We don’t have to *splash out* always, do we?
Spouse: Honey, we started with ‘certain things’ and now we are at ‘always’ and the two are different. We do *pay through the nose* occasionally.
Spouse: Yeah. Certain things *cost a fortune*
*Cost an arm and a leg/ Cost a fortune* – Expensive
*Pay through the nose* – to pay too much for something
*Squirrel away* – save
*Splash out* – To spend a lot of money on buying things
Article on Consumer Protection (E-Commerce) Rules – Part II
Team SCS&A, represented by Sreenivasan Narasimhan, G K Ashwin & Krithika Murali, have analysed the Consumer Protection (E-Commerce) Rules, 2020 notified by the Department of Consumer Affairs. While Part I of the two-part series introduced the topic and focused on the definitions and duties of E-Commerce Entities, Part II focuses on liabilities and duties of e-commerce entities as well as the sellers who use the platforms of such e-commerce entities.
An article with a read time of 6 minutes packed with information!!
Vide Notification dated 26.06.2020, Ministry of MSME notified new criteria for classification of enterprises as Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises and their registration in Udyam Portal following which stakeholders requested for certain clarifications. Through Office Memorandum dated 06.08.2020 the Ministry has granted the following clarifications:
Validity of EM Part II and UAMs as issued till 30”’ June, 2020: All the existing EM Part II and UAMs obtained till 30.06.2020 shall remain valid only till 3l.03.2021. Consequently, fresh registration in the new Udyam Registration Portal is required to be done by all existing registered MSMEs.
Editing / updating of the existing registration details: Existing registration details can be edited or updated till 31.03.2021. Those enterprises that have not entered their Aadhar or PAN number so far in the UAM portal are advised to obtain Udyam Registration Number well before 31.03.2021.
Value of Plant and Machinery or Equipment: Online Form for Udyam Registration captures depreciated cost as on 31st March each year of the relevant previous year. Therefore, the value of Plant and Machinery or Equipment for all enterprises shall mean the WDV as at the end of the Financial Year as defined in the IT Act and not the cost of acquisition or original price, which was applicable under the earlier classification criteria.
Vide Circular dated 01.01.2019, restructuring of existing loans to MSMEs classified as ‘standard’ without a downgrade in the asset classification was permitted, subject to certain conditions. The same was extended by RBI vide Circular dated 11.02.2020. Vide Circular dated 06.08.2020 the same has been further extended. The conditions mentioned in the Circular are as follows:
The aggregate exposure, including non-fund based facilities of banks and NBFCs to the borrower should not exceed ₹25crore as on 01.03.2020.
The borrower’s account was a ‘standard asset’ as on 01.03.2020.
The restructuring of the borrower account is implemented by 31.02.2021.
The borrowing entity is GST-registered as on the date of implementation of the restructuring. This will not apply to MSMEs that are exempt from GST-registration. This shall be determined on the basis of exemption limit obtaining as on 01.03.2020.
Asset classification of borrowers classified as standard may be retained as such whereas the accounts which may have slipped into NPA category between 02.03.2020 and date of implementation may be upgraded as ‘standard asset’, as on the date of implementation of the restructuring plan. The asset classification benefit will be available only if the restructuring is done as per provisions of the Circular.
For accounts restructured under these guidelines, banks shall maintain additional provision of 5% over and above the provision already held by them.
The IBBI (Insolvency Resolution Process for Corporate Persons) Regulations, 2016 has been further amended vide the IBBI (IPR for Corporate Persons) (Fourth Amendment) Regulations, 2020 notified on 07.08.2020. The amendments are as follows:
The choice of 3 IPs offered by the IRP for the financial creditors to choose from must be from the State / UT having the highest number of creditors in the class to ensure ease of coordination and communication between the Authorised Representative (AR) and the creditors.
AR should seek voting instructions from the creditors only after the minutes of the meeting are circulated. AR can seek preliminary views of creditors in the class before the meeting after providing sufficient time after sending notice.
The committee of creditors are to vote on all compliant resolution plans simultaneously after it’s evaluation as per evaluation matrix. Only the resolution plan that receives the highest share of votes, which should not be less than 66% is considered as approved.
Amendment to Liquidation process and Voluntary Liquidation Process Regulations
W.e.f. 05.08.2020 following amendments have been made to the IBBI (Liquidation Process) Regulations, 2016 vide the IBBI (Liquidation Process) (Third Amendment) Regulations, 2020 and to the IBBI (Voluntary Liquidation Process) Regulations, 2017 vide the IBBI (Voluntary Liquidation Process) (Second Amendment) Regulations, 2020:
The fee payable to a liquidator shall correspond only to the portion realised by him if the same is not distributed by him. Similarly, where the liquidator only distributes the amount not realised by him, the fee payable to him shall correspond only to the amount distributed.
The Corporate Person initiating the voluntary liquidation process under the Regulations may replace the liquidator appointed by appointing another IP as liquidator by a resolution of members / partners / contributories. The IP has to intimate the Board within 3 days of his appointment.
Vide Notification dated 30.07.2020, CBIC has notified that E-invoicing is mandatory for Registered Persons having turnover above INR 500 Crore w.e.f. 01.10.2020. E invoicing is not applicable to the following categories of Registered Persons:
SEZ Unit (Exempted vide Notification No. 61/2020-CT dated 30.07.2020)
Insurance or a banking company or a financial institution, including a NBFC;
Goods Transport Agency;
Registered person supplying passenger transportation service; and
Registered person supplying services by way of admission to the exhibition of cinematograph films in multiplex screens.
Note: The contents of this Newsletter are only a summary and has not dealt with any issue in detail. Any action taken or proposed to be taken must be in consultation with professionals and not merely based on the articles / news updates. S. C. Sharada & Associates disclaims all liability on action taken without professional advice.
S. C. Sharada & Associates,
Company Secretaries. #405, 7th Cross, IV Block, Koramangala, Bangalore – 560 034.
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