STPI: NASSCOM Recommendations on industry requirements related to Work from Home (WFH)
Blog: NASSCOM Official Blog
Given the available technologies and an impetus from the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, IT/ITeS companies are now looking at a blended working model with both work from office and work from home (WFH). In this regard, NASSCOM recently made a representation to Government highlighting industry requirements related to units that are operating under Software Technology Parks of India (STPI). Given below is a brief summary of our recommendations made to the Government.
- Enable facility of working from a place outside the unit permanent: As per the provision 6.08 of the Handbook of Procedure of the Foreign Trade Policy (2015-20), employees of IT and ITeS units based in STPI can WFH. However, as per the process, the units are required to seek permission from the authority for enabling WFH. In addition, the units are also required to specify the duration of WFH. We suggested that such provision should be amended to provide companies a flexibility to enable WFH on a permanent basis.
- Allow units to take-out duty-free assets on permanent basis for the purpose of work from home: As per provision 6.07 of the Handbook of Procedure (HBP) of the Foreign Trade Policy (2015-20), 2, STPI units can take out laptops computers and projections systems outside of STPI units for the purpose of use of authorized employees. However, such permissions are given for temporary period. As companies look to adopt work from home on a long-term basis, we suggested that the flexibility of taking out IT assets out of STPI on a temporary basis should also be made permanent.
- Allow reduction in operational area on account of permanent work from home: Given companies are now looking to enable WFH on a permanent basis, we have suggested Govt should consider permitting such units to reduce their operational area in STPI.
- Removal of requirement of E-way bill for movement of duty-free assets between STPI units and employees’ home: As per GST law, movement of duty-free assets with value exceeding INR 50,000 would require issuance of e-way bill for each movement, which adds to the administrative and compliance burden for of the companies. We have requested the government to allow movement of duty-free assets on a self-declaration basis without the requirement of generation of e-way bill.
We are now pursing on the above recommendations and shall keep you updated on further developments.