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Now, your Income Tax forms will be pre-filled to ease e-filing
September, 25th 2015

As part of efforts to popularise the electronic mode of filing Income Tax Returns (ITRs), the CBDT is planning to provide "pre-filled" return forms to filers which will have an automatic upload of data on income and other vitals of a taxpayer.

The apex policy-making body of the I-T department is actively working to ensure that this customer-friendly measure can be launched for taxpayers from the next financial year.

The move comes in the backdrop of the new e-filing system, put in place in August, which allows online verification of an ITR by using either the Aadhaar number, Internet banking, ATM among others.

Small taxpayers with income less than Rs 5 lakh and without claims of refund can generate an electronic verification code from the e-filing website of the tax department which is later sent to their registered email to e-verify the return.

"We are looking at a possibility of making more entries for a pre-filled form so that it becomes more easier for the taxpayer to file an e-return. We want to ensure that when technology moves, we can always bring in better facilities to make the life (of taxpayers) even easier," CBDT Chairperson Anita Kapur told PTI.

She said these technology upgrades are proposed to be initially started for small taxpayers who file the one-page ITR (ITR 1) and the thinking in the department is that when the data of income as per previous records is automatically uploaded then the taxpayer can file their ITRs quickly and wherever there are any amendments or changes, those can be corrected by the taxpayer himself.

"We want to give the taxpayers the right to change or correct their figures (in the new system) and help them file their ITR as quickly and easily as possible," she said.

The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) is particularly bolstered on this front by the latest figures which recently reported that the tax department received 2.06 crore returns on its e-filing portal as on September 7 (last date for ITR filing), which is an increase of 26.12 per cent over the last year, when 1.63 crore returns were filed online.

The department's central processing centre (CPC) in Bengaluru, as on September 7, processed 45.18 lakh returns and issued refund to 22.14 lakh taxpayers relating to assessment year 2015-16.

During this period, the department electronically verified more than 32.95 lakh e-returns.

With these new technological advancements, the I-T department is aiming to completely remove human interface in these taxpayers services, which directly leads to faster processing of ITRs and spares taxpayers from being harassed by any official.

The CBDT boss added they are also in touch with the Ministry of Communication and Information and Technology to get some e-intermediaries on board to help in e-verification of ITRs.

"We are also looking at a possibility of a third party e-verification. This is just a project under consideration as of now and if our DeITY can work out some e-intermediaries and then they do a verification for taxpayers...may be make a gateway. It is under consideration," she said.

On suggestions of mobile phone-based verification for ITRs, Kapur said there are some "security concerns" on this front currently.

"Here, I don't think as of now we have that kind of comfort level," she said.

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