Indian government allows cash payment of over ₹2 lakh for COVID-19 treatment at hospitals

Indian government allows cash payment of over ₹2 lakh for COVID-19 treatment at hospitals
Kolkata: A relative of Covid-19 patients wait outside a Covid Hospital, in Kolkata. (PTI Photo/Swapan Mahapatra)(
The Income Tax Department on Friday issued a notification allowing hospitals and nursing homes to accept cash payments of ₹2 lakh and more for the treatment of coronavirus infected patients. The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), that frames policy for the department, issued the notification.

It said hospitals, dispensaries, nursing homes, COVID care centres or similar other medical facilities providing COVID-19 treatment to patients are being "specified for the purpose of section 269ST of the Income Tax Act".
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This section restricts any person from receiving an amount of ₹2 lakh or more in cash, from a person in a day, in respect of a single transaction or in respect of transactions relating to one event or occasion from a person.

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It was introduced by the Union government in 2017 as a measure to curb black money.

The notification said the latest provision is being made for a period between April 1-May 31 "on obtaining the PAN or Aadhaar of the patient and the payee and the relationship between the patient and the payee" by such hospitals or COVID care centres.

Officials said the move was aimed to remove the hardship being faced by relatives and caregivers of coronavirus infected patients who visit the hospitals for treatment.

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The country is grappling with the onslaught of a massive COVID-19 wave with a record over 4.14 lakh new infections and 3,915 deaths being reported in a span of 24 hours, as per the Union health ministry data updated on Friday.

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