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Quick refunds

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SummaryIf you have filed your income-tax returns online, you can get refunds within three to four months.

A web-based tracking facility and a stronger grievances redressal system have ensured that you get your I-T refunds without fuss

If you have filed your income-tax returns online, you can get refunds within three to four months. The government has launched a web-based status tracking facility for refunds. Also, the grievances redressal mechanism has been strengthened for prompt disposal of all complaints.

The minister of state for finance, SS Palanimanickam, in a written reply in the Lok Sabha, has said the process of issue of refunds has been streamlined with computerisation. E-filing of returns is encouraged for speedy processing and issue of refunds through the refund banker scheme.

He also said that instances of corruption for settlement of refund claims and complaints have come to notice from time to time. “Whenever any such instances or complaints come to notice, they are verified and if found correct, the concerned officers or officials have to face penal consequences depending on the facts and circumstances of the case,” the minister said in the written reply.

The Central Board of Direct Taxes has set up Aaykar Seva Kendras for efficient tax administration and the web-based facility can be used by the taxpayer to track the resolution of refunds and credit for pre-paid taxes and augmentation of processing capacity.

Refunds are directly deposited through the electronic clearing system in the taxpayer’s bank account and electronic filing of TDS returns is now available throughout the country. To ramp up the processing of refunds, the Centralised Processing Centre at Bangalore has also increased its daily processing capacity of returns filed.

Analysts say these steps have helped taxpayers as they do not have to wait endlessly for refunds.

Those who have not filed returns can file them belatedly, as per the provisions of the Income Tax Act, 1961. A belated return can be filed within two years of the end of the financial year or before completion of the assessment year, whichever is earlier.

Of course, there are certain issues one has to keep in mind for belated filing. If your returns is not filed within the deadline, you cannot carry forward losses incurred in business or capital loss (other than loss from house property) during the year. Also, the taxpayer will have to forego the right to carry them to future years. Under the Income Tax Act, if the returns are filed by the due date, the

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