With Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of making the redressal mechanism taxpayer friendly, the income tax department had launched a special electronic grievance mechanism called ‘E-Nivaran’. It is a dedicated one-stop grievance redressal system that operates under the supervision of an assessing officer or supervisory officer.
The mechanism has been living up to its name; ‘nivaran’ means redressal. Previously, such dealings with tax authorities required manual filing of letters with several follow-ups for resolution. There was no consolidated report where the grievances could be listed. A vigorous redressal mechanism was sorely missed.
Of late, the income tax department has started making use of technology to ease taxpayers’ problems. Where, earlier grievances were submitted at CPC-ITR (Centralised Processing Centre), CPC–TDS, ASK (Aayakar Sampark Kendra), NSDL, UTIITSL and through the e-filing portal, E-Nivaran has now integrated all these modules.
Types of grievances at E-Nivaran
— Queries addressed to assessing officer or supervisory related to income tax returns filed, tax refunds, rectification applications and for outstanding tax demand.
— Queries addressed to e-filing website team with reference to registration, password-related issues on the income tax portal and verification of income tax returns.
— Queries addressed to NSDL/ UTIITSL with reference to discrepancies and issues related to PAN application.
Incidentally, E-Nivaran does not consider grievances related to right to information (RTI) matters, court related/ subjudice matters, religious matters, grievance against foreign government and grievances of government employees concerning service matters, including disciplinary matters, etc.
File and view
E-Nivaran can be used by taxpayers to file and view their grievances and by the staff to resolve disputes in an electronic mode. It is worthwhile to note that even a person who does not have a PAN or TAN number can file a grievance. He needs to click on ‘E-Nivaran’ tab (top right end corner) on the income tax portal.
Further, an individual with PAN or TAN, needs to log in to the income tax portal and then click the ‘E-Nivaran’ tab. In the E-Nivaran form, the tax payer will be required to mention his personal details, details of the grievance and upload the documents related to the grievance. Once the grievance is submitted, the acknowledgement number would be used for tracking the progress of the grievance on the portal.
The smart electronic platform is expected to benefit taxpayers as there is flexibility and saving of time with respect to submitting issues online and for follow-up, there is smooth flow of information. It serves as a written proof and for easy availability for further investigations, there is faster resolution as all matters are tracked in one place and the aggrieved is kept posted through SMS and emails.
Though this new initiative, E-Nivaran has already managed to build faith amongst tax payers in the short period so far. Taxpayers are assured that their issues are being considered and the income tax department is working to get their grievances resolved. This mechanism is expected to provide swift resolutions to most taxpayer grievances.
The writer is partner, Deloitte Haskins & Sells LLP. With inputs from Mousami Nagarsenkar, director, and Tarika Goel, deputy manager, Deloitte Haskins & Sells LLP