The government has collected an all-time high income tax of Rs 4.5 lakh crore in 2010-11, at least Rs 4,000 crore more than the revised budget estimate of Rs 4.46 lakh crore.
This is in addition to all-time high refund of Rs 72,000 crore that the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has made till March 31, 2011 by clearing backlogs.
In previous years, the tax collection figures were bloated by delayed refunds, giving a wrong picture to net direct tax collection. The early refunds have also saved the government nearly Rs 4,500 crore towards interest payments.
In Nagpur, while addressing the passing out of 63rd batch of Indian Revenue Service officers, CBDT chairman Sudhir Chandra said, "Direct taxes collection by the end of financial year 2010-11 stood at Rs 4.50 lakh crore against a revised target of Rs 4.46 lakh crore."
Chandra has issued instructions to all I-T formations to immediately clear all pending refunds and has given them an extended ten days till April 20 to make refunds to taxpayers.
Delhi has cleared 82,000 refunds between April 1 and 10; Jaipur 35,343; Ahmedabad 33,610; Chennai 30,158 and Pune 19,522, clearing all the backlog. But, taxpayers in Mumbai are not as fortunate with more than two lakh refunds pending till April 10.
Officials in the Mumbai commissionerate have refused to abide by the finance ministry's diktat and have gone slow on refunds. It has cleared nearly 7,000 refunds between April 1-10. In contrast, relatively smaller formations such as Baroda and Hyderabad cleared more than 15,667 and 18,174 refunds respectively during this period.