In its efforts to encourage and popularise electronic payment of taxes, the finance ministry on Wednesday made it mandatory for two more categories of taxpayers to pay taxes electronically beginning April 1, 2008.
The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has now made it mandatory for all corporate assessees and all assessees (other than companies) to whom provisions of section 44AB of the Income Tax Act are applicable to pay taxes online.
Section 44AB includes those firms which are liable for tax or have a net turnover of more than Rs 40 lakh and would cover about 8 lakh such firms. It would also include persons carrying on business with turnover or gross receipts over Rs 40 lakh and persons engaged in professions where their income is over Rs 10 lakh in the previous year.
The two categories of taxpayers already file their income tax returns electronically.
Tax-payers can make electronic payment of taxes through the internet banking facility offered by the authorised banks. They will also beprovided with an option to make electronic payment of taxes through Internet by way of credit or debit cards, a CBDT release said.
Finance minister P Chidmabaram has previously hinted that computerisation and online filing and payment of taxes is the way forward. To this end, income tax return forms have also been so designed no to have any paper attachments.
However e-payment of taxes is yet to catch on in a big way in India. In 2006-07, less than 1% of the total direct tax collections of about Rs 2,29,272 crore were made through the e-payment mode.