December 19, 2018
ENHANCE TAX BASE INSTEAD OF HARASSMENT TO TAX PAYERS IS OUR OBJECTIVE, SAYS CBDT CHAIR AT PHD CHAMBER
Chair, CBDT, Mr Sushil Chandra on Wednesday assured India Inc. that the objective of the government is to enhance tax base instead of harassment by the tax officials to the assessees and government is working on a model to widen the tax base.
Inaugurating a Conference on “Tax Laws & Systems in India and Way Forward” under aegis of PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry here today, Mr. Chandra also informed that the CBDT collected digital information of the tax payers and have strong channel through which the information of tax payers have been gathered and it is being matched with department’s data banks to find the non-filers of returns.
He also stressed that to avoid enforcement action, give right information at the time of filing returns and the department is very strict on tax evasion. Last year the department has filed 4500 prosecutions against the tax evaders as well as the persons who did not file returns in time and last year around 68% were convicted. This year also the convictions are in progress.
Department is also very serious on benami property. So far in two years when Act has come, the department has attached 1777 properties including those of bank accounts and the amount increased to more than Rs.6500 crores, he disclosed.
He also said that “we have different treaty with around 72 countries for automatic exchanges of information to stop tax evasion”.
“Last year something around 1.8 crore SMS were sent to tax payers or to the potential tax payers with that particular strategy last year we got something around 6.87 crore returns and in which there was 1.06 crore new tax payers and this is the methodology through which we try to increase our tax base and this year till today around 6.13 crore returns have been filed by the tax payers”, he disclosed.
Mr. Chandra also said that non intrusive methods, no harassment by the department, less scrutiny will increase the tax returns and this is the strategy in which they are working and appealed that who have the eligible income should file the returns.
He appealed that foreign assets should be declared in the tax returns failing which is a matter of concern and can be held for prosecution and asserted that tax evasion will not be tolerated.
“This year less than 0.5% cases are taken to scrutiny it means 99.5% are absolutely returns are processed and till today refunds were made to 2.4 crore persons which is 53% higher than last year and amount which have refunded was Rs.1,26,000 crore so far”, Mr. Chandra said.
Member (Legislation), CBDT, Mr. Akhilesh Ranjan said that government is willing to make tax laws very simple and ease of compliance to bring more and more tax payers in the system of tax base. He also speaks on tax neutrality, efficiency and on simplicity of tax compliance.
In his welcome remarks, President, PHDCCI, Mr. Rajeev Talwar said that the new direct tax law will make taxation more progressive and happy to note that the Task Force on revamping Direct Tax Law have been constituted as the new direct taxes code will be in sync with the economic conditions of the country, prevailing international best practices, the ease in carrying out business, reduction in avenues of litigation and, above all, be a less cumbersome tax system.
Among others who also spoke on the occasion comprised Senior Vice President, PHDCCI, Mr. D K Aggarwal; Chair and Co-Chair, Direct Taxes Committee, PHDCCI, Mr. Anil K Chopra and Mr. Mukul Bagla and its Principal Director, Mr. Abhi Narayan Mishra.
Koteshwar Prasad Dobhal