Direct tax collections touched Rs 6,96,200 crore during 2014-15 despite difficulties on the economic front, marginally falling short of the target.
Officials said the Income Tax department, which collects a variety of taxes including personal and corporate taxes, mopped up approximately Rs 6,96,200 crore in the fiscal ending March 31, 2015.
"The collections have been very close to the target despite a huge tide of economic slump. The collections fell short by only a minuscule 1.26 percent and not 14 percent as reported earlier," a senior I-T official said.
The official added that as the final collections are still being compiled, the actual shortfall will "even be lesser by a few points." The achieved collections, during the last fiscal, are about Rs 9,000 crore less from the projected target of Rs 7,05,000 crore. Also, the latest collections are 19 percent more than the last fiscal.
In 2013-14, the mop-up was Rs 5,83,000 crore. The government had revised the direct tax collection target to Rs 7,05,000 crore for the fiscal 2014-15 against the initial projection of Rs 7,36,000 crore in view of the sluggish economic growth.
"The sluggish growth, especially in service sectors and the Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) category took a toll on the direct taxes collection.The department, in spite of these challenges, achieved the best it could," the official said.
The tax department, the official said, also registered a growth of only 8 percent in the most crucial TDS category as compared to 18 percent under the same category during the previous fiscal.
"The department tried to get as much as TDS from various sectors as possible. Same reasons can be attributed to less TDS collections which are valid for the shortfall in the overall tax kitty. A sluggish manufacturing and building sector has made it impossible for the I-T department to get any better revenue on this front," the official said.
The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), the apex policy making body of the I-T department, got very active in the first three months of this year to garner as much revenue as possible but a slow growth in certain sectors put a hurdle in its efforts, they said.
"A non-adversarial tax compliance regime was the motto of the department and certain factors beyond the taxman's control attributed to the overall slump in revenue collection," they said.