Income tax department picks up 68k cases for e-verification


NEW DELHI: The income tax department has picked up 68,000 cases for e-verification for either not reporting or under-reporting income in the annual returns, a move that is meant to help taxpayers revise their annual filings within the stipulated three-year window, a top official said on Monday.
“The whole exercise is to point out gaps that may exist and help taxpayers update their returns and reduce litigation… Once an assessee files updated returns, there are less chances of his case being picked up for scrutiny or re-assessment,” CBDT chairman Nitin Gupta told reporters. So far, 15 lakh updated returns have been filed with Rs 1,250 crore collected as tax, he said.
Of the cases taken up for e-verification — an exercise that matches data in the Annual Information Statement (AIS) on transactions and the returns filed — nearly 56% or 35,000 cases have been resolved satisfactorily.
Since September, the tax department has been running a pilot through a risk management system that takes up cases based on certain parameters. Gupta said that only high-value cases have been taken up and the risk management system can be revised annually, but refused to disclose the criteria. Oneof the challenges is that several taxpayers have not responded to the department’s communication, which is to be responded to within 10 days. The CBDT has a timeline of 90 days for completing a particular case under e-verification, but complicated cases could take longer. Taxpayers have time till March 31, 2023, to file updated returns for income earned during the 2019-20 financial year.
Nudging taxpayers to view their AIS regularly, Gupta said taxpayers should give feedback to the department if they see any mismatch. “The e-verification scheme is a non-intrusive way to nudge taxpayers to file updated returns in case of mismatch. It is transparent, without any human interface, encourages voluntary compliance and would help cut down litigation,” he said.


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