Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s move to reward taxpayers by introducing the taxpayers’ charter, which may be a part of the broader reform agenda, would introduce a transparent tax environment in the country.
Tugging at the souls of non-taxpayers, the PM has urged them to be a part of the nation-building exercise to form it self-reliant. Since the last one year, the government has been undertaking several measures towards introducing a transparent and problem- free tax regime in the country. On these lines, the central government has reduced the company tax and abolished the dividend distribution tax.
Union Budget in 2019, the finance minister introduced the faceless e-assessment scheme, here there would be the total removal of any interface between the assessing official and the assessee. This would bring in several advantages to the tax assessee. The PM also informed that the number of individuals filing returns has gone up by 25 million in the last 6-7 years. With this new initiative, the government aims to widen the tax net from the present 15 million.
Firstly, scrutiny of a tax assessee is a very cumbersome process, as the minister is predicted to satisfy all the queries of the income-tax official concerned. She may need to physically visit the income-tax department several times, till all the questions aren’t resolved. This may, at times, also end in instances of departmental high-handedness or cases of private bias.
However, with the new scheme, the assessing official is randomly chosen from anywhere in the country. Also, all the queries are alleged to be responded only through the official email. If the assessee has any questions, then she also has the choice to ask an equivalent to via the same email. She is given adequate time to respond to the query raised, thus making the entire experience a harassment-free one. In her case assessee will be assured for fair scrutiny, after that the assessment official is also unknown to her, speed trail would be ensured.
Our government is taking initiatives to promote Digital India. With technological advancements, the government is going to be fixing more emphasis on the utilization of technology for smoothening tax administration processes. This move would help in a faster refund process with the whole system going digital. The introduction of the document identification number (DIN) is also a major step where every communication of the department would carry a computer-generated unique DIN.
At the moment, less than 2% of the country’s population pay taxes, because the PM acknowledged. The reason isn’t that people don’t want to pay taxes; it’s also because a number of the processes are cumbersome. Introducing less tax policy and acknowledging the contribution made by the taxpayer in the nation-building, our government has been encouraging many individuals to give taxes voluntarily. We believe that soon there’ll undoubtedly be a rise within the contribution of direct taxes paid by taxpayers. By introducing these tax reforms, India is also fast becoming an attractive investment destination for countries that are on a lookout to shift base from other regions in a post-COVID-19 scenario.