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CA Haresh N Mehta

Can you allow anybody to give untested medicines to Citizens of India?

Can you allow anybody to serve half-cooked food to public at large?

This is exactly what our beloved Government Departments are doing. They are releasing various forms & e-filing templates which are like half cooked food & which is really bad in taste as well as causing pain to the stomach of citizens of India. As there are legal obligations & penal provisions attached to non-filing of such forms, experiments are very hazardous to the health of Indian tax payers and other users. If you can’t allow to distribute untested drugs or medicines to citizens of India, certainly you should not allow to release such bug infected, poorly designed and legally untenable e-filing templates/forms. No Government has right to make such experiments on Citizens of India.

Can you allow anybody to stipulate a condition like reach a target within stipulated time however target is given only after some time of the race is started?

This exactly what is happening with Income Tax Department.  Till June Income Tax Return Forms are not prescribed. Till end of June e-filing utility is not started. Whereas due date for filing of Income Tax Return is 31st July. They are deliberately constraining Indian Tax payers from complying with their legal obligations. Returns are prescribed very late. E-filing mechanism is commenced just before few days before due date. Tax audit template/utility is suddenly changed just one month before the due date. No facility to save or view or print the draft. Even a beginner or student of Information technology would prepare a better template than this. New website is so fantastic that it works only with specific browser, only specific java version etc. Help line gives fantastic solutions you create a fake path, you do this, you do that and ultimately nothing works. What a great website. Even the error messages are not drafted properly so rectification of error becomes guess work. Only God (may be) can save citizens of India from this fantastic e-governance of Indian Government. Benefits of e-filing is only for government department. They could have very well create log file about how many attempts have been made by an assessee for e-filing so that he can be saved from penal provisions but who is thinking about taxpayers?

Mera Bharat Mahan. Jai Hind


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  1. CA Sebastian Martrin says:

    Congratulations CA Hareshbhai!
    The online e-filing software does contain bugs.They must first have bugfree software.Our Institute-ICAI should take interest in this matter.Members do suffer.Also general citizens suffer heavily.
    IT dept should not give halfcooked food..
    Just because we tolerate Govt is taking undue advantage..

  2. Ranajit Dhar says:

    Excellent posts. Today I have received a demand notice to pay a little more than what I have paid through TDS within a month of issue of notice dated September. I am at a loss as to what to do and whom to approach. My TAN number stated to have been not flagged (N)! But that I am an assesse. Is it my fault? I have efiled my return. Any suggestion from the esteemed members here?

    Ranajit Dhar

  3. Alpesh Shah says:

    Congratulations Hareshbhai for your BOLD opinion, Truly speaking, all are unsatisfied with the mechanism followed by the government. I definitely agree with you in fact all must be agree with the opinion with CA Haresh Mehta, computerised but UNORGANISED system of the Government. The want to comply all the legal formalities to us, but do not provide a BUG FREE environment, so that compliance can be done. I must say rather than talking in between us we must ask our ampex body i.e ICAI to represent the matter in a proper fashio, and invest time work of the profession, Rather than westing time in OPENING CEREMONY, and other non productive and non professional activities, and just doing PHOTO SESION and fill up the news letter.
    We all must raise our voice at such a DECIBAL that can reach at the ear of the government.

  4. Ca. Haresh N. Mehta says:

    Dear Friends,

    Thanks for your response. I hope my write up is understood in real sense. I am not against e-filing or e-governance. In fact I highly admire e-governance step of the various government departments in our country. We will definitely reap good fruits in the forthcoming years. My contention & grievances are as below:-
    1) just like a manufacturing company never launches a product before trial run, E-filing templates shall also be tested properly, remove bugs, designed in consultation with legal expert and than only shall be made mandatory because otherwise it can widely damage public or taxpayers and compel them to make legal defaults and liable for penal actions.
    2) Though keeping in mind proper security measures, the website should be such that compatible with all the popular web browsers and reasonable hardware & software requirements. It is a matter of great concern if all other websites are working properly except Income tax e-filing site on the same computer. When most of the users are facing such type of problem in the month of July or Sept when due date is near, it is a matter of serious national concern,
    3) Fruits of e-governance must flow even to the taxpayers & users. They must generate log of number of attempts and errors encountered by the assessee so that innocent person is not penalised for default attributable to technical reasons.
    4) before 1st April of the financial year not only all the Income Tax Returns shall be notified but also e-filing mechanism shall be started. Why delay in notification of Income Tax Returns & e-filing mechanism? If a taxpayer want to file his Income Tax Return on very first day of the financial year he shall not be restrained due to this reason. Delay in notification of Returns & other forms means wastage of valuable man hours of Indian Citizens and inefficiency of the Department. How they can expect taxpayers to fulfill their due dates when a big delay is attributable to Government itself. It must be compensated by extension of the due date.
    Have a nice day.

  5. CA.Vallabhdas Raichura says:

    Many thanks, Hareshbhai for your very bold and forthright write-up on the subject of e-Filing of ITRs.TDS mismatch between 26AS and Form 16 A is a permanent headacke despite clarification right, center and the left.Who has to follow the circulars of CBDT? Only the assessees? What about the Deparment locally and in Bangaluru?

    CA.Vallabhdas Raichura
    October 16, 2013.

  6. Hiral says:

    Exellent presentation of very pretty situation of tax payer.
    As to full fill this online process reqirment no support system is established and one has to just do
    try and try try nd try day and night just to ful fil requir.ment…………………

  7. vinod says:

    The IT order u/s 143 order received shows a demand for further payment of tax. Though factually all payable tax had been deducted as TDS only, The actual paid amount of tax is seen on AS 26 also. How to take up the matter. The ITR was filed through e-filing system

  8. s prakash says:

    CA Haresh N Mehta congratulations at last ONE CA has stood up against the CBDT.Ask CBDT to remove the e-filing for another 10 years.The demand notices one has to answer even though their are no demands.The credit for the TDS is not given even if it appear in 26AS.There is shortage of staff in the Department and specially the computer trained staff is not available in the department.to give one example of the TUMKUR income tax office. There are 3 ITO WARD-1,2, TRO and TDS.But one tax assistant has to work half a day in TDS one day in TRO and another day in Ward-1.No full time DC and JC.Even the CPC generate letter and ask the assessee to contact the jurisdictional assessing officers, but the assessing officer will say that they can not rectify any information of the CPC and CPC data is not available for any rectification by the ITO’s,even for simple mistake in the Date of Birth by the CPC the ITO can not rectify the same as per the PAN card.The assessing officers have become so smart that now a days they transfer every thing on CPC and keep on issuing demand notices even for the refund cases.ONE SUGGESTION THAT KINDLY CREATE ON ITO POST AT ALL OFFICE CALLED ITO RECTIFICATION U/S 154.If you approach the OMBUDSMAN a standard replay “approach after contacting all the officers up to BOARD ” will come in a cover.THESE ARE ALL THE RECENT SIMPLIFICATION EFFECT OF THE GOVERNMENT FOR SMOOTH COLLECTION OF THE REVENUE FOR CREATING SCAMS AFTER SCAMS.

  9. ASHWIN GALA says:

    Dear Sir ,

    With the use (one may say , Misuse ) of technology our Govt. is taking taxpayers at Ransom. Misery does not end with successful e-filing. It starts here. Govt. issues bundle of notices just on basis of data available from e- filing. e.g. AIR data. In scrutiny, income tax Dept. says it is assessee’s responsibility to reconcile the data. They just ignore the glaring mistakes in the DATA available to them. There are no. of possibilities of mismatch of entries due to various practical difficulties , many times just unavoidable.
    But the Govt. & people in charge in the dept. are just looking an opportunity to make money out of this. There are many more areas of such unecessary harrassment of sincere Tax payer. But there is nobody to understand agony of the assessee.

    It is high time to launch strong direct agitation. Various Associations, institutes should take lead.

  10. dattatreyahg says:

    Thanks Taxgru for publishing this bold & forthright article by CA Hareesh N Mehta. Congrats & thanks to Hareesh for an excellent analysis of the still-born system,which can easily be called putrid as far as it relates to the spirit of CITIZENS CHARTER which was talked about so much. In the name of modernising Tax management, It seems that the Tax Dept ventured into Computerisation, without any back-up knowledge of BASICS of Computerisation. Take for example TDS/form 26AS/form 16 or 16A,it went out of control to such an extent that Delhi High Court had to intervene to issue directives to Tax Dept to correct glaring systemic deficiencies adversely affecting the interest of honest taxpayers(Deductees). It is time that our Taxation System is made Tax-Payer- friendly, by aiming at simplification of rules/regulations/ procedures,effective administration, instant response to problems of Taxpyers,effective check/control over Deductors (as against irresponsible acts even at CBDT level like adviseries to Deductees to sort out TDS problems with Deductors,essentially washing of their hands of their mandated/legally- enabled duties/responsibilities. When you go in for computerisation,the result should be one better than manual system. The present system cannot claim this.Take the example of Refunds. Delays of a year or more does not inspire confidence in the system. In the manual system,a statement used to come along with the Refund cheque which gave the details of how the Refund amount has been arrived at so that the Tax-payer could satisfy himself that the Refund was Correct.It also mentioned the INTEREST element of the Refund clearly so that the Tax-payer could include that amount in his income & pay tax thereon. This is no longer the case. SBI sends an ECS credit notice which is not backed up by the statement leading to the Refund amount. It does not mention the interest element separately. Govt may be losing a lot of money as the Tax-payers can not be expected to pay tax on (an un-known amount of) the interest element of the Refund. It is time Tax Dept looks into this aspect as well,before it escalates into more serious/ embarassing problems for the Dept/Govt. I am not a tax-expert,but only a sufferer of the problems of a small-tax payer mentioned above,and I am open to corrections of my views,if any. My intention is only to see systemic corrections in my own life-time (I am 71 yrs old)

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