18 October 2017
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Direct Tax Income Tax

  • Inheritance tax may be reintroduced in India by Centre soon; How it can impact you
    Oct 09, 2017
    In a bid to shore up its coffers, the government is planning to reintroduce inheritance tax in India, which may be introduced in the coming Budget, according to media reports. It may be noted that inheritance tax, which was known in India as ‘estate duty’ and is imposed on the property passed to an heir, was abolished in India by the Rajiv Gandhi government in 1985 as it failed to reduce wealth inequality.However, some economists are now in favour of reintroducing it to boost tax revenues.
  • Tax department to engage with corporates to spur receipts
    Oct 04, 2017
    Amid slowing growth in advance tax collections, the income-tax department is exploring enhanced engagement with the top 100 companies to facilitate compliance. A committee set up under the direct tax department to review assessment and scrutiny has identified “taxpayer segmentation” to improve collections.“The idea is to provide differential treatment to big taxpayers as they make up for the bulk of the revenue collection. The tax department is, after all, a 30 per cent stakeholder in corporate sector earnings. Stepping up engagement with them will help the department and the companies,” said a government official.The idea is to have a dedicated tax officer who will act as a one-point contact, keeping a close watch on a company’s quarterly results or performance, facilitating advance tax filing and helping estimate earnings for advance tax computation.
  • Income Tax department fastens belt to add 1.25 crore new ITR filers this fiscal
    Sep 29, 2017
    The Income Tax Department has been tasked to add 1.25 crore new return filers in the current financial year as part of the government's plan to widen the tax base in the country. The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), that makes policy decisions for the I-T department, has directed the taxman to undertake "focused efforts to significantly increase the tax base in the current financial year of 2017-18." The target, the CBDT directive accessed by said, is to add 1.25 crore new I-T return filers. A new I-T return filer is defined as a person who has not filed return in the previous years but is liable to do so under the law. The taxman has to add such entities and get them do the filing of their I-T returns.
  • Direct tax receipts may be a spoiler for fiscal maths
    Sep 28, 2017
    Growth in advance tax collections slowed to 11 per cent in the first half of the financial year, against 14 per cent a year ago, posing a challenge to the government’s tax collection target for the year. This may, in turn, disturb the fiscal maths in these difficult times when the economy is in need of additional expenditure.Fiscal consolidation is facing challenges from the non-tax revenue side due to lower than expected receipts from spectrum. Besides, the income declaration scheme is likely to yield only Rs 7,000-8,000 crore in its third instalment, due by September 30, against Rs 15,000 crore in the first two. Up to 50 per cent of the taxes and penalties were to be paid in the third instalment, but assessees paid more in the first two instalments.
  • I-T self-assessment filings under lens
    Sep 25, 2017
    The income-tax (I-T) department is suspecting that taxpayers are understating their advance tax liabilities under self-assessment in the early quarters of the year and showing them as tax on additional income or windfall gains at the end of the financial year. Tax officials have sought an explanation from several corporates and individuals who have filed their self-assessment in the last three years, according to sources. “The I-T laws allow self-assessment, but only up to a certain extent. Assessees can’t use this mode to adjust their
  • Advance tax payout by top cos grows just 2% in Sept quarter
    Sep 21, 2017
    The advance tax paid by top Mumbai-based companies in the September quarter has gone up by just two per cent to Rs.30,200 crore against RS.29,600 crore, largely due to uncertainty in GST regime, according to informed sources.In the last two quarters, the top-100 companies have remitted Rs.46,800 crore (Rs.45,200 crore), an increase of four per cent which reflects the stress in the economy.Corporates pay 15 per cent of their estimated total tax liability in June quarter, 45 per cent in September, 75 per cent in December and the final tax outstanding in March.
  • NPA-laden PSBs crimp advance tax mop-up at 10.6%
    Sep 20, 2017
    A steep fall in advance tax payouts by bad loan-saddled state-run banks has led to a muted 10.6 per cent growth in overall revenue mop-up from large corporates in the megapolis in the September quarter.The overall mop-up at Rs. 69,000 crore, up 10.64 per cent, is tepid even though other sectors like steel and even private sector lenders have done comparatively well, income tax department sources said today.Unsatisfied with the collection, the department has asked its officials to keep a close vigil on the forthcoming quarterly results by large corporates.
  • I-T department goes after defunct companies for tax frauds
    Sep 18, 2017
    The tax office is reopening old records of many companies that have wound up and no longer exist in the books of the government — something the revenue department has rarely done in the past. Former directors of such closely-held private companies, which have received tax notices along with the official liquidators, fear they could be suddenly saddled with unforeseen liabilities. While opening new private companies and shutting down old ones have often been a ploy to move unaccounted money, some of the companies set up to carry out bona fide businesses which subsequently failed have also come under the glare of the income tax department. Till now, the department has typically stayed away from companies to which it had issued non-objection certificate prior to the winding process. But, it's well within the law and powers of the tax office to review an old tax assessment if there is suspicion of tax fraud.
  • Jurisdiction-free I-T assessment on the cards
    Sep 18, 2017
    To check corruption and harassment, the tax department will soon launch a pilot of "jurisdiction-free assessment" where a tax officer will not get to know identity of the assessee as allotment of cases will be done randomly by computers rather than on the basis of area. The success of the pilot, to be first carried out in New Delhi and Mumbai, will determine if the plan has to be expanded all over the country, a senior revenue department official said.The country is divided into 18 tax zones. Taxpayers are assessed by the officers of the region they are based in. Under the new system, the assessment zones will be demolished and a special computer software will allocate a taxpayer to any officer anywhere in the country, he said. The identities of the taxpayer and his assessing officer will be hidden in a bid to check corruption and harassment assessees face at the hands of over-zealous officers.
  • Recent low inflation means you pay more capital gains tax
    Sep 18, 2017
    Prices rising at a slower rate should be good news. But not if you have earned long-term capital gains. The consistent decline in inflation in the past 3-4 years means that long-term capital gains can no longer escape tax through indexation. Indexation takes into account the inflation during the holding period and accordingly adjusts the purchase price of certain assets. This upward revision in purchase price reduces the capital gains and brings down the tax liability.Between 2008 and 2012, consumer inflation was raging in double digits, which meant that debt fund investors were earning tax-free gains. In fact, the inflation was so high that they could book notional losses and adjust them against other taxable longterm capital gains.
  • Income Tax department’s Mumbai zone surpasses national average of revenue collection
    Sep 16, 2017
    Gross revenue collections by the Mumbai zone of the Income Tax department grew 13.17 per cent at Rs 1,03,837.6 crore, surpassing the national average at 11.81 per cent as on September 14. Mumbai zone’s gross collection was at Rs 91,753.5 crore in the year-ago period. The country’s gross revenue collection also grew 11.81 per cent at Rs 3,36,402.6 crore from Rs 3,00,874,6 crore a year ago.Similarly, the Mumbai zone’s revenue collection from international taxation also grew 36.64 per cent at Rs 8,591.6 crore from Rs 6,287.9 crore a year ago, department sources told PTI here today.
  • Private equity funds take ‘double decker’ route to escape tax here
    Sep 16, 2017
    Some private equity funds are experimenting with ways to circumvent the law on indirect transfer of shares by setting up two-tiered structures in countries where treaties prevent Indian authorities from taxing the transactions, said people with direct knowledge of the matter. Often called a ‘double-decker Dutch sandwich’ or ‘double-decker’, these structures are aimed at avoiding getting taxed in India and may run afoul of Indian authorities and the provisions of the General Anti-Avoidance Rules (GAAR). Rules for indirect transfer of shares — introduced in 2012 after Vodafone won a transfer-pricing tax dispute with the government — provide for taxing overseas transactions in shares of Indian companies if the shares constitute more than 50% of the foreign fund’s total assets (exceeding Rs 10 crore).
  • CBDT asks I-T department to take urgent steps
    Sep 15, 2017
    With revenue collection from the TDS category witnessing a sluggish pace, the CBDT had asked the I-T department to pull up its socks and take "urgent" steps and also conduct survey operations to shore up the funds.CBDT Chairman Sushil Chandra has issued a stern directive to all the field offices of the Income Tax Department in this context and has sought an action taken report in less than a month's time.In his letter, accessed by , Chandra has expressed his "disappointment" over the growth rate under the Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) collections, saying some regions (I-T ranges) in the country were showing negative or single digit figures.
  • I-T dept to launch jurisdiction-free assessment from October
    Sep 15, 2017
    The assessment of taxpayers is set to become jurisdiction-free. Come October, the income tax (I-T) department will launch a pilot project of the new system in Mumbai and Delhi to identify the loopholes. The project will then cover 100 cities in the first phase of implementation.The system envisages allocation of a particular taxpayer’s profile to any officer across the country via a special software. In the existing system, taxpayers are assessed in the specific region where they are based.The move aims to curb corruption in the department along with harassment faced by the assessees. “This is a first-of-its-kind initiative. Under this, neither the assessee nor the tax officer would know the other’s identity,” said a senior I-T official close to the development.
  • Income-tax department, MCA team up against shell firms
    Sep 15, 2017
    The income tax (I-T) department and the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) have signed a pact to regularly share data, including PAN and audit reports of firms, to crack down on shell companies, the government said on Thursday.The pact aims at curbing the menace of money laundering, black money, and misuse of corporate structure by shell companies, a finance ministry statement said. It added a memorandum of understanding for Automatic and Regular Exchange of Information was signed between the MCA and the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) on September 6 and took effect the same day.
  • 67 of total 671 selected startups receive tax benefits so far, says minister
    Sep 13, 2017
    The government has extended tax benefits to 67 startups so far with a view to promoting budding entrepreneurs in the country, minister of state for commerce and industry CR Chaudhary said on Tuesday.In January 2016, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had unveiled a slew of incentives to boost start-up ecosystem, offering them a tax holiday and inspector raj-free regime for three years, capital gains tax exemption and Rs 10,000 crore corpus to fund them.“3,576 startups have been recognised as on September 7 and tax benefits have been given to 67 innovative startups,” Chaudhary said here while addressing the startup India states conference.The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), under the ministry, considered 671 startups for income tax exemption and of this 67 received the benefit.The minister also assured full support and facilitation from both the centre and state governments.
  • Cabinet clears bill to double tax-free gratuity to Rs 20 lakh
    Sep 13, 2017
    In a move that will bring a cheer to private and public sector employees in the country, the government has decided to double the upper limit of tax-free gratuity payable to an employee to Rs 20 lakh.The Cabinet on Tuesday approved the introduction of the Payment of Gratuity (Amendment) Bill, 2017, in Parliament.It also increased dearness allowance and dearness relief by one percentage point to 5 per cent, benefiting 5 million employees and 6.1 million pensioners.Apart from private sector employees, the amendment to the Gratuity Act, 1972, is also expected to increase the limit of gratuity of employees in public sector undertakings and autonomous government organisations not covered under CCS (Pension) Rules, and bring it at par with central government employees.
  • Income-tax department calls big corporate entities to pay advance taxes
    Sep 13, 2017
    The income-tax (I-T) department is “coaxing” top corporate entities to make the 45 per cent of the total advance tax payment by September 15, the due date for the second instalment. Sources said tax officials were meeting executives of the top 45-50 advance tax-paying firms to persuade them to make the payment of 45 per cent of the full-year’s advance tax. The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) in a recent meeting directed income-tax commissioners to pull up their socks on revenue collection. The CBDT has set an October deadline for achieving the desired
  • 78% rise in paperless I-T assessment; all-India roll out by fiscal end
    Sep 09, 2017
    The ambitious project to conduct paperless assessment for income tax payers rose by 78 per cent over the last three years, prompting the department to roll out the regime pan-India by the end of this financial year. The government initiative was launched in October 2015 by the I-T department’s policy-making body–the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT)–in select metro cities with an aim to reduce the visit by assesses to tax offices and their interface with the taxman, thereby curbing instances of corruption. A latest blue print prepared by the department on the subject states that the number of paperless or e-assessments over the internet has seen growth in the last three years. “During the financial year 2015-16, a total of 1,014 cases were completed under the pilot project (e-assessment).
  • I-T Department to focus more on e-assessment to reduce human interface
    Sep 04, 2017
    The Income Tax Department will focus on widening of tax base and maximise e-assessment to cut down on human interface, according to an official statement. Also, efforts will be made by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) to exceed the income tax collection target set for current fiscal by use of big-data analytics, said the statement after the end of the two-day annual retreat of central and state government tax officers.
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