E-filing procedure needs further simplification despite positive growth over the years :Study
By: Finance India
Income Tax Department has initiated implementing recommendations of various committees on Income Tax reforms by adopting Information Technology to make the filing of returns faster, easier and to reduce the administrative cost. The study finds that there has been a continuous growth of e-filing in India which was possible only because of benefits of adoption of information technology by Income Tax department. The Adoption of e-filing is positive in few states and while in many other states e-filing is quite negligible. Maharashtra being the number one state which the level of adoption is very high. There are less than one Lakh e-returns received in most of the other states.
Authors find that of the total respondents of the study, 31.7 % file Income tax returns online without taking others help, while 27% depend on Chartered Accountants, 19 % take the help of tax consultants, and only five per cent depend on TRPs. The number of TRPs needs to be raised in every District or Ward so that assesses get the services of TRPs easily and find less pressure on e-filing their returns.
Study also concludes that options such as getting password, uploading XML returns, knowing outstanding tax demand, knowing rectification status seems to be very difficult operations. These areas need critical modification in favor of Assesses to make e-filing more user friendly. Although Filers do not find any difficulty in the case of knowing ITR-V receipt status, knowing AOs, viewing 26AS and accessibility of ITR-V receipt acknowledgement do not seem to be difficult.
The paper attempts to understand the level of awareness and adoption of e-filing of ITRs in India. However, E-filing procedure further needs simplification, to educate and adopt aggressive, countrywide campaign for creating awareness along with making e-filing mandatory for all assesses irrespective of tax liability.
When the assesses find no troubles in using information technology in the process of filing their Income Tax Returns it is sure that all the tax payers would rather voluntarily adopt and make the Department's Project more successful.
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