Hindustan Times (Lucknow)
Refrain from high-pitched scrutiny: CBDT to taxmen
Seeking to usher in a non-adversarial tax regime, the Central Board of Direct Taxes has asked officials to refrain from high-pitched tax assessments without proper basis and deal with assessees in a time-bound manner.
The CBDT also asked all its officials to maintain cleanliness in office and punctuality in appointments while avoiding unnecessary adjournments.
Though less that 1% of returns filed are selected for scrutiny, this area of work has often drawn adversarial comments.
Supervisory officers have been directed to play a more pro-active role in monitoring assessments to ensure that lengthy questionnaires or summons without due application of mind are avoided.
Taxmen have also been asked to ensure that inspections and reviews are done according to guidelines issued to enable capacity building within the department and accountability of officers.
Revenue secretary Shaktikanta Das had main- tained that the key objective of the IT department is to foster a transparent non-adversarial tax regime while reducing the interface between tax officials and assessees. “We want full transparency and non-adversarial tax regime,” Das told HT earlier.
Several discussions have also been held between the CBDT and the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) on the issue. All supervisory authorities have been directed to enable an effective grievance-redressal system in their jurisdictions while adhering to timelines.
According to a finance ministry statement, senior officers have been directed to ensure that appeals are filed only on the merits and not merely on the tax effect involved. “Cases have separately been brought to the attention of officers wherein tribunals / courts have commented adversely on frivolous filing of appeals,” the statement said.