Mentioning of the sources of income not only brings clarity, but also plugs the loopholes, as assessees can't remain ignorant anymore and omit the incomes.
To make things simple for assessees like salaried people, who don’t need any help from professionals like CAs, the government in the new ITR-1 Sahaj form has included the sub heads and items that may be selected from drop down lists. Earlier mere mention of heads and sections in the income tax return (ITR) forms used to make the tax filing process difficult for common people.
For example, earlier no itemised source of income was provided under the “Income from Other Sources”, which made people ignorant of items like “Interest from Savings Account” and/or “Interest from Income Tax Refund” etc.
To set aside such confusion, four sources of income – Interest from Savings Account, Interest from Deposit (Bank/Post Office/Cooperative Society), Interest from Income Tax Refund and Family Pension – have been included along with “Any Other” under the “Income from Other Sources” section.
Mentioning of the sources of income not only brings clarity, but also plugs the loopholes, as assessees can’t remain ignorant anymore and omit the incomes.
However, to mention any income under “Any Other”, an assessee has to describe the source of income, which again leave some scope for confusion regarding what such a source may be and what would be the limit of such income to qualify under “Income from Other Sources” in the ITR-1 form. For example, if income from home tuition is treated as income from other sources? If yes, up to what limit, beyond which the tuition may be treated as a business?
Apart from “Income from Other Sources”, earlier, “Deduction u/s 16” was mentioned to compute “Income chargeable under the head Salary”, which used to make salaried people confused about the deductible items. But in this year’s ITR-1 form, three items – Standard Deduction, Entertainment Allowance and Professional Tax – have been included under the head “Deductions u/s 16” to make things clear.
Also, tax-free allowances and exempt income (for reporting purpose) have been shifted from “Taxes Paid and Verification” page to the first page (i.e. “Income Details”) to provide more visibility and to minimise chances of omission from the return, which would again help in bringing more clarity and plugging the loopholes.
However, the change in long-term capital gain (LTCG) tax rule has made filing difficult for those salaried persons, who invest in equities and equity-oriented funds, as they will have to file ITR-2, in case there was any redemption in the financial year 2018-19.