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India Inc makes a strong pitch for simpler income-tax return forms
April, 25th 2015

India Inc has made a strong pitch for simpler income-tax return forms sans any cumbersome disclosures at a review meeting of the new return forms called by finance minister Arun Jaitley on Friday.

"We told the finance minister that return forms need to be simpler," said a businessman who attended the meeting between Jaitley and representatives of industry bodies Assocham, CII, Ficci and PHDCCI.

On Saturday last, revenue secretary Shaktikanta Das had said the government will reconsider the new ITR forms to make it simple.

This was after the finance minister had called him up from Washington, asking him not to proceed further on the matter.

The minister wants to hear stakeholders before finalising changes in the new forms to make it simpler.

He had earlier this week held a meeting with tax officials on the new return forms that have evoked sharp reactions from experts and others alike. Experts and consultants have criticised the new forms, saying the government was seeking too much of data. They felt that the addition of new information would make the process of filing returns difficult.

The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), the apex policy making body of the Income-Tax department, had last week notified the I-T return forms for the current assessment year that seek several additional details to check the menace of black money.

As it stands, the new ITR forms, including the ITR-1 and ITR-2, require an assessee to furnish the number of bank accounts held by the individual "at any time (including opened/closed) during the previous year" with the last balance in the account as on March 31 of the just-concluded fiscal.

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