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Wish-list: Allow tax payers to submit details of assets with returns
February, 15th 2008
Move will ease scrutiny burden, say tax experts

The Direct Taxes Professionals Association (DTPA), in a recent pre-budget memorandum to the Union Finance Minister, Mr P. Chidambaram, has suggested that taxpayers should be required to furnish details of their immoveable and movable assets in the income-tax return for sake of transparency irrespective of the fact whether they are required to maintain books of accounts or not.

With the introduction of the new return forms (ITR-1 to ITR-8) last year, the earlier system of submission of documents with I-T return forms has been dispensed with.

Talking to Business Line here on DTPAs Budget 2008-09 wish-list, Mr Arvind Agarwal, Chairman of Taxation Committee of DTPA, said furnishing specific details of investments on moveable and immoveable assets (above the prescribed limit) would help the taxpayer to explain the source of income, and in turn help the AO (Assessment Officer) to verify from the Form itself so that all cases need not be selected for scrutiny.

Expenses

According to the association, the proviso to Section 69C dealing with disallowance of unexplained expenditure, while at the same time treating the amount as income under the above section results in double jeopardy, as first the amount is treated as income and even the bonafide expenses are not allowed to the assessee.

It is suggested that the proviso should be reviewed and deleted in the interest of justice.

Mr Narayan Jain, Chairman of Research Committee of the association, said provision of disallowance of certain expenses under Section 40(a)(ia) (applicable when tax is not deducted or after deduction but not paid within the prescribed time limit) was also harsh and needed a review, as it cast a disproportionate tax burden on the assessees, especially when it involved a lapse in payment of a small amount.

He felt the existing TDS provisions were good enough as these provide for interest under Section 201 and penalty under Section 221 for similar lapses.

It would be rational to collect the amount of TDS from the deductor as tax, even if not deducted by him, as the law already provides for the same.

Revise monetary limits

Plea to revise monetary limits prescribed for various purposes: Seeking a re-look at some of the monetary limits prescribed under various Sections of I-T Act, DTPA has suggested that a realisitic view should be adopted when insisting that payments otherwise than through an account payee cheque would be disallowed.

It is suggested that a proviso to Section 40A(3) may be made to provide that the relevant provision would not apply in respect of payments (in cash) to transporters, who generally insist on cash payments as they require it for fuel, tyre replacements and other expenses while on the road.

Alternatively, it is suggested that disallowance of expenditure (otherwise by an account payee cheque/draft) should be restricted to 20 per cent, as prevalent prior to the amendment made in the Finance Act, 2007.

 
 
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