The Directorate of System,
Income Tax Department,
Government of India
To, The Prime Minister of India
To, The Finance Minister of India
I am a Practicing Chartered Accountant from Nagpur, Maharashtra. Recently, there has been a lot of technological changes in the area of Direct and Indirect Tax practices. We are all aware of the GSTN network, how it has “harassed” the working life of practicing Chartered Accountants. The compliance requirement under GST has increased manifold like OTP for challan payment, OTP for return submission, filing of summary return, then filing of Detailed Return, then matching of input invoices, intimating the clients of unmatched invoices etc. etc. and after all this effort a single GST return is filed. Please note here, we do not have any problem (other than our disturbed personal life) in doing extra work, but the client will not pay us for our “extra” unproductive work.
Day by day it is observed that the Income Tax Website is going on the same line. To add insult to our injury, recently an update dated 22-09-2017 has been introduced “again” to update details of clients for login into the portal, without which a client cannot file his return. To make you aware of the situation, I would like to add that most of the clients belongs to different age group and they are also engaged in different type of activities like salary in a private organisation, retail business handling almost 200-250 customers daily, night shift job, the employees of government transport system like ST bus conductor and pilot, loco pilot etc. Most of them are not very tech friendly and most of them don’t get time to log in to the income tax portal and update details.
In order to give “good services to our clients, even the aadhar linking of most of the clients were done by us (the tax practitioners and Chartered Accountants) at our office. You should understand in order to make the process more user friendly, you are making it difficult for us Chartered Accountants by making us devote our time in unproductive work with no extra remuneration.
We are not saying that you should not obtain such details from the assesses, but making it mandatory before login to the portal is really a harassment and that too at the time where more important work like Tax Audits are going on. Why didn’t you introduce such system at the time of AADHAR LINKING so that we would have given both the details at one go. What are you expecting from the Chartered Accountants and tax practitioners that first we login for each customers and link their AAHDAR, then we do the same exercise again to update their bank details. And the process is not that simple, every time we have to call the clients to ask them the OTP. The process has to be repeated twice or thrice when the assessee doesn’t pick our call.
Of course, your answer will be that you haven’t said the tax practitioners and Chartered Accountants to login and update the profiles of our clients; rather you are focussing on educating the assessee itself and making a process to facilitate effective communication between the taxpayer and department. But, instead of trying this method, why don’t you hire more employees who can directly go to the assesses house with a tab or smart phone and update his details immediately and also educate the assessee about how to update details in case where some new features are introduced by you. By this way, not only AADHAR or bank details, but also their address and present mobile number, his occupation, number of children and all the other details can also be updated. There is already a massive unemployment in the country; you should hire some semi qualified person for doing such unproductive work, rather than involving the qualified generation to do such unproductive work. We could serve our clients and our nation in more productive way, instead of doing such works.
Our clients (your assesses) trust us, and that is why they allow us to update their details by sharing their confidential identity numbers. If you think that your communications are not communicated to the assesses, for that you have already introduced aadhar verification. Steps like such can only be appreciated. Or if you “really” want this system to work, introduce a cash back or other like incentive to them, so that each one of them will surely update their details.
Moreover, we the Chartered Accountants and tax practitioners will also save some of our time and energy in doing unproductive work and can spend some time with our family (if some time left after doing GST compliances).
P.S. – We chartered accountants really appreciate the steps Income Tax Department has taken in past, but this update of 22-09-2017 is really a big head ache to each one of us. Kindly introduce more user friendly approach for this.
STEPS THAT CAN BE TAKEN TO MAKE THE PROCESS MORE SIMPLER:
- Give a pre generated email id to all the registered assesses (like @gmail.com or panno.@ereturns.com)
- Introduce an incentive or cash back to assesses to encourage them to “actually” register or update the details by themselves.
- Extract data from other sources like bank details and IFSC codes are already given in their e-returns or the same can also be extracted from UIDAI Database as the bank accounts and mobile numbers are linked with AADHAR.
- Give more time to update such details, so that even we can do the same in phased manner.
- Stop asking for OTP at the time of updating details. Let it be mandatory only at the time of new registration.
- Let the maximum permissible limit of email and mobile to 10 assessees like before rather than restricting it to 3 assessess.
- For salaried assesses, introduce an additional field in TDS return for contact details of the deductees, so that maximum contact numbers will reach you by 15th October when the TDS return for 3rd Quarter will be filed.
Sumeet Subhash Soni
- Open Letter to PM related to income tax profile update on e-filing website
- Open letter to CBDT on restriction on use of Email & Mobile Number