National capital Delhi contributed 13% to the total direct taxes collected in the country in 2014-15 and came a distant second behind India’s financial capital Maharashtra, whose share stood at 40%.
Delhi’s contribution was Rs 91,247.90 crore in 2014-15 when the total direct tax collection stood at Rs 6.96 lakh crore. Karnataka was third at Rs 60,595.22 crore and Tamil Nadu occupied fourth place at Rs 44,732.62 crore.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s home state Gujarat gave only Rs 35,912.46 crore in 2014-15. Maharashtra topped the list and gave Rs 2.77 lakh crore.
But in another startling revelation, the data showed that the share of direct taxes in the Indian economy fell to 5.47% in 2015-16, the lowest in almost a decade.
It showed direct taxes accounted for only 51% of total taxes collected last year. It was 56% in 2014-15.
Worse, only 2.9 crore people filed income tax returns in 2012-13. This was a little over 2% of India’s population of 120 crore. Only six people declared an average income of Rs 68.72 crore in 2012-13.
The data showed the number of individuals paying income tax decreased by 3.70 lakh between financial years 2012-13 and 2013-14. In 2013-14, 4.87 crore individuals paid taxes, down from 4.90 crore in the previous year.
The government said it released the data on popular demand by economists and India watchers.
“Our government has taken the landmark decision of publishing the income tax data. It is a big step towards transparency & informed policy making.” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a tweet.
Among others, French economist Thomas Piketty had urged the government earlier this year to increase tax revenues and release data on collection. After the release of the data, Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian tagged it to Piketty on twitter.
Subramanian had then contested Piketty’s suggestions to raise tax revenues.