Failed to make tax-saving investment in March? You can do it now

By Chirag Nangia

You can make tax-saving investments for FY2019-20 till June 30
I was unable to make my tax-saving investments in March due to lock-down. Can I make the payments now and get tax deduction for 2019-20?
—Rajat Singh
Considering the disruptions caused by lockdown and financial hardship/ cash flow issued faced by taxpayers due to reduced business activity, due dates for all tax-saving investments has been extended to June 30, 2020. Therefore, investment can be made post March 31, 2020 till June 30, 2020 and deduction can be claimed for FY 2019-20. However, investments made during this period will be counted for only one of the two financial years (i.e., either FY 2019-20 or FY 20-21).

Will I get any tax benefit if I prepay my housing loan?
—Atul Kumar
Prepayment of home loan does not entail any specific benefits whereas tax benefit on repayment is provided, based on timing of repayment of loan, i.e., paid before or after the property is acquired. If repayment is made after acquisition/ construction, total amount of principal paid in a financial year can be claimed as a deduction from gross total income under Section 80C before calculating net taxable income. Interest payment can be claimed as deduction under Section 24 up to Rs 2 lakh for self-occupied property, provided construction gets completed within five years from end of financial year when property was purchased/ constructed.

My son, who is 16, gets scholarship of Rs 50,000 every month from the state government? Do I have to pay any tax on his behalf as he is still a minor?
Any kind of scholarship granted to a person to meet the cost of education is exempted from tax under Section 10(16) of Income Tax Act. If your son gets scholarship for the purpose of meeting cost of education, then it is not taxable.

My wife has received Rs 1 lakh from her mother. Will it attract any gift tax?
—Ajay Sharma
Any sum of money received from relatives is fully exempt from tax in the hands of the beneficiary. Hence, the amount of Rs 1 lakh received by your wife from your mother shall be fully exempt from tax. However, your wife shall be required to disclose the exempt gift amount under the schedule ‘Exempt Income’ in the ITR form.