By Nirbhay Kumar
New Delhi, Feb 5 (IANS) The proposed tax charter would specify taxpayers services such as returns, assessment and refunds and give delivery timelines. PC Mody, Chairman, Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said that the rights given to taxpayers in the proposed charter would be enforceable.
“Today, taxpayer has an obligation. There is a certain timeframe for filing return. Now, if you look at it from the other side, if the return has come, what would be the time frame for its processing. The time frame for getting refunds, assessment, appeal etc would be provided in the charter,” Mody told IANS in an interview.
The government has proposed to amend the provisions of the Income Tax Act to mandate CBDT to adopt a Taxpayers’ Charter.
The CBDT Chief said that there was a conscious effort on the part of the department to end any harassment of taxpayers. He stressed that the deliverables in the taxpayers’ charter would be provided irrespective of their categories such as individuals or corporate entities.
The tax department is of the view that the tax law imposes certain obligations on tax payers and hence there should be corresponding obligation on the part of tax authority. Further, there is a need to create an atmosphere of trust between tax administration and taxpayers.
In order to rid taxpayers of vexatious litigation, the government has proposed a new scheme to settle old cases of direct taxes. Under the scheme, taxpayers would be required to pay only the amount of the disputed taxes and there will be complete waiver of interest and penalty provided they make payment by March, 2020.
The CBDT Chairman said that the move was aimed at systematically resolving the past cases with the expectation that big litigants would avail the scheme.
Mody hopes to achieve direct tax collection target in spite of concessions provided to the companies in terms of lower corporate tax saying the revised target has been realistically set.
“The total collection so far is Rs 7.40 lakh crore and we expect to achieve our target of Rs 11.7 lakh crore for FY20,” he said noting collection is higher in the last quarter of the fiscal.
(Nirbhay Kumar can be contacted at [email protected])