The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) on Thursday issued stricter instructions for administrative action against officers who resort to “high-pitched tax assessments.”
In 2015, the CBDT had provided for the constitution of ‘local committees to deal with taxpayer grievances from high-pitched scrutiny assessment’ in each principal commissionerate region. Considering the implementation of faceless assessment regime, the CBDT has now issued a revised instruction regarding constitution and functioning of these committees.
“This instruction also provides for initiation of suitable administrative action against the officer concerned, in cases where assessments are found by the local committee to be high-pitched or where there is non-observance of principles of natural justice, non-application of mind or gross negligence of assessing officer/assessment unit,” the CBDT said in a statement.
The local committees to deal with taxpayer grievances from high-pitched scrutiny assessment shall consist of 3 members of principal commissioner rank. The other members may be selected from the pool of officers posted as principal commissioner I-T, principle CIT (Central) or Judicial or audit of the respective region.
Grievances under faceless assessment regime would be received by email and the local committee would examine to ascertain whether there is a prima-facie case of high- pitched assessment, non-observance of principles of natural justice, non-application of mind or gross negligence of assessing officer/assessment unit.
The committee would ascertain whether the additions made in assessment order is/are not backed by any sound reason or logic, the provision of law have grossly been misinterpreted or obvious and well-established facts on records have outrightly been ignored, the instruction said.
The local committee shall endeavour to dispose of each grievance petition within two months, it added.