Feb 17, 2021
I-T department in hunt for small evaders as deadline looms
Suddenly, there has been a surge in reopening of returns of small-time tax evaders, with income tax authorities deploying investigation units to search and survey suspect cases of tax evasion of up to Rs 50 lakh. Cases are being reopened for assessment years 2015-16, 2016 -17 and 2017-18 as no action will be possible beyond March 31 for these three years. Changes proposed in the budget conconfined reopening of tax assessment to three years from the earlier six years. However, assessment can be re-opened for up to 10 years if there is concrete evidence of concealed income of Rs 50 lakh and above. The amendments are yet to be notified. Tax officials, however, say the burden of reopening smaller tax evasion cases may lead to lack of focus on bigger evasions. Instructions have been issued to in vestigation units across the country to collate and disseminate all information related to suspect tax evasion cases flagged by assessing officers, particularly those getting time barred by March 31.