Indore (Madhya Pradesh): The officers of the investigation wing and central wing of the Income-Tax Department of the state have to dispose of in just 10 days about 1,900 cases of tax-payers and firms that came under IT raids during 2018-’19 and 2019-’20. This increased workload may go in favour of the suspected income-tax dodgers as the officers have time to carry out the tax assessment only in a limited period of 10 days by September 30.
JB Mohapatra, chairman, Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), has issues these instructions to director-general of investigations (D-G—Inv.) wing and chief commissioners (CCs) of the central wing of all the states, including MP. The IT Department’s top boss has made it clear that there will be no extension of the date for disposing of the assessment of such cases, which was being extended time and again last year owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.
These are the cases of assessment for assessment year 2018-’19 and 2019-’20, for IT search and surveys conducted during financial year 2018-’19 and FY 2019-’20. The assessment officers (AOs) have been instructed that, in case of faceless assessment, they have to make sure to ask for a personal hearing through video-conference to make them understand the explanation of the suspected dodgers.
“Across the country, there is a pendency of over 35,000 cases, including 2,157 cases in Madhya Pradesh till September 3. From 2,157 cases, till last week, only 206 cases were disposed of. But still, by last weekend, over 1,900 cases are pending,” official sources said on Monday.
‘Surely, there’ll be a heavy work load on the assessment officers to dispose of the cases in this short time of just 10 days. This may lead to unreasonable tax assessment and it may in favour of the suspected tax dodgers and against the department,’ said CA Pankaj Shah, former chairman, CA Indore Branch of ICAI.
Delay to undermine deterrence of raids
Officers have been reminded that their key responsibility is to bring tax from the income which has been detected during intrusive search operations. The success of search operations will be rendered futile if timely and proper proceedings are not completed by the department within a reasonable time frame. The delay will also undermine the deterrence created by search actions