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CBDT makes tax filing compulsory for those earning up to Rs 5 lakh
July, 26th 2013

Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has made it mandatory for salaried individuals earning up to Rs 5 lakh annually to file income tax returns. In the last two assessment years (2011-12 and 2012-13), CBDT had exempted salaried employees earning a salary of up to Rs 5 lakh annually and interest income on savings account of up to Rs 10,000 from filing tax return.

"The exemption was available only for the assessment years 2011-12 and 2012-13... the exemption provided during the last two years is not being extended for assessment year 2013-14," the CBDT said in a statement.

For the assessment year 2013-14, the CBDT, this year, had made e-filing tax return compulsory for those earning a total assessable income of more than Rs 5 lakh.

Industry experts say the CBDT wants individuals to take the e-filing route, which is easier than the manual return filing route and hence the facility has not been extended to those earning less than Rs 5 lakh.

"Taxpayers are encouraged to file their returns electronically. E-filing is an easy, fast and secure method of filing of income tax return. Moreover, digital signature is not mandatory for these taxpayers," added the CBDT statement.

ALSO READ: How to file I-T returns

For filing returns, an assessee can transmit the data in the return electronically by downloading ITRs, or by online filing. Thereafter the assessee had to submit the verification of the return from ITR-V for acknowledgement after signature to Central Processing Centre.

ALSO READ: 7 important tax documents you should be aware of

The tax department will set up special return receipt counters for salaried tax payers from July 25 to 31 at Pratayakshar Bhawan, New Delhi.

"As returns of income above Rs 5 lakh have to be e-filed online mandatorily, the same will not be received at any of these special counters. Only paper return of income up to Rs 5 lakhs can be filed at these counters," the Finance Ministry statement said.

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