The Tax Advocates Association Gujarat, an organization that functions as a bridge between tax assessees and the tax department, has requested for an extension of the Income Tax Return filing deadline. In light of the heavy rainfall disrupting daily life across the country, they argue that taxpayers and professionals are finding it hard to communicate and fulfill their tax compliances.
The Association’s request is premised on several factors. They highlight that consistent rainfall and flood have caused havoc, hampering communication and transportation systems, thus preventing tax payers from reaching professionals and vice versa. The Association emphasizes the particularly challenging situation for non-audited tax payers, who have to file their returns by 31st July 2023. Given the current situation, many taxpayers and tax professionals are struggling to match and finalize their income statements due to the disrupted routine and the lack of accessibility. The Association also stresses the impact of the weather conditions on various cities and regions in Gujarat.
Conclusion: Considering the highlighted issues, the Tax Advocates Association Gujarat’s request for extending the tax filing deadline seems justified. The unprecedented weather conditions have indeed created obstacles for taxpayers and tax professionals alike. The decision now rests with the relevant authorities to acknowledge these challenges and respond to the appeal appropriately.
TAX ADVOCATES ASSOCIATION GUJARAT
Date: 24th July, 2023
1. Hon’ble Smt Nirmala Sitharamanji
Union Minister of Finance
Ministry of Finance, Govt of India
North Block, NEW DELHI-110001
2. Hon’ble Chairman,
Central Board of Direct Taxes,
North Block, NEW DELHi-110001
3. Hon’ble Pr. Chief Commissioner of Income Tax, Gujarat
Aaykar Bhavan,Income Tax,
Greetings from Tax Advocates Association Gujarat!
Sub: Request to extend the due date for filing Income Tax Returns for AY 2023-24 from 31st July 2023 to 31st Aug, 2023.
Tax Advocates Association Gujarat is an Association of Tax Advocates / Consultants, who are registered and enrolled with The Bar Council of Gujarat and having its registered office Ahmedabad. It was established in the year 1975 and since inception, it has been our endeavor to keep our Advocate members and public at large abreast and updated about the changes in various tax legislations.
Your honor would appreciate the fact that we work as the connecting link between the Tax Assesseses and the Tax Department. Tax Advocates Association-Gujarat has been carrying on various activities like seminar, symposium, study circles and various Representations to Income Tax Authorities and/or Goods & Services Tax Authorities for the benefit of the tax payers at large. Our Association is an Associated member of ‘The Gujarat Chamber of Commerce & Industries’-Ahmedabad.
With reference to the above captioned subject and considering the heavy Rain fall consistently disturbing and damaging the routine life and schedules of every Individuals since last 15 days across the County and in the state of Gujarat;
It is humbly requested to consider the followings: –
(1) The due date for filing of Income Tax return for A.Y. 2023-24 for taxpayer whose accounts are not audited is fast approaching i.e. 31/07/2023 and if the taxpayer fails to file Income Tax return on or before due date then late fees will be applicable as per taxable income of the assessee.
(2) In view of the flood situation in many states across the country it is requested to extend the last date for filing of Income Tax return from 31/07/2023 to 31/08/2023.
(3) Your honor is very much aware that due to torrential rain there has been loss of life and property in many parts of country.
(4) The vulnerable sections are mostly prone to these extreme events which lead to loss of life and property.
(5) These extreme rain events have caused flash floods, cloudburst, urban flooding etc. and hampers the communication and transportation system. Life of all people are severely impacted.
(6) We would like to highly to your good office, of which you must be aware that there is heavy rainfall in country which has caused disastrous situation of flood. Heavy rain and flood has severely impacted personal, working and professional life of all individuals, trade and industry, taxpayers and professionals as well.
(7) Your Honor would understand that due to this situation of consistent heavy Rain fall, neither the taxpayer is able to communicate to professionals, nor professionals are able to communicate with taxpayer for their tax compliances. Businesses of taxpayers and professionals are badly damaged due to rain and flood.
(8) Your Honor would appreciate that particularly with regards to the Non Audited segment of tax payers who have to file their ITRs on or before 31ST July, 2023, and considering the verification of Annual Information Reports which exhaustively provides the details of various transactions and incomes reflected on the portal, the taxpayers are finding it difficult to match and finalizing their Income statements due to non-availability of their accounting staff or else the tax consultants who get stuck with water blockage and disruption of their routine office work due to heavy and consistent Rain fall since last 15 days.
(9) Your Honor must be aware that the mofussil’s of Gujarat particularly the regions of Saurashtra have been badly damaged due to floods and non-connectivity of transport systems. This has paralyzed the taxpayers to easily approach their Tax Consultants for filing of their Income Tax Returns. It is very much understandable that such kind of remote area people would not have an easy access of email or other inter net facility to send their data to their respective Tax Consultants. In the same manner the Tax Professionals practicing in these regions of mofussil would not be having an easy availability of staff persons who are stuck due to water blockage and disturbance of routine life due to heavy Rain fall.
(10) This time around it has been observed that due to the accurate availability of the AIR’s data, the meticulous data preparation of a tax payer in order to meet with the true and correct filing of their Income Tax Returns would be of utmost important. Therefore, unless and until the assessee and the Tax Professional sit together for reconciling and finalizing the data, it would be hard to file a Return. The whole routine has been disturbed due to heavy Rain and badly affected transport systems.
(11) The various parts of the Major Cities of the country have all together different issues like sucking in traffic due to water blockage or reaching back distant homes and coming back to work place again the next day. In the major cities of Gujarat like Ahmedabad, Surat, Baroda, Bharuch, Junagadh, Jamnagar, Bhavnagar, Rajkot etc. the issues of commutation have been a major hurdle due to consistent Rain fall. This has affected the availability of the accounting staff persons in the offices of the tax payers & even the Tax Professionals who would prepare the data on computer system to finalize the Income Tax Returns.
(12) Besides above since the due date of filing quarter-4 TDS Returns being 31st May of each financial year and most of the Tax payer liable to do this compliance would fail in filing a correct single TDS return, it is observed that the tendency of correcting and revising the TDS returns are huge and large due to various transactions being a part of TDS compliance as per the provisions of law and therefore these tax payers fail in doing a one-time correct single compliance of 26-Q TDS Return correctly which unable the deductee to get his credit in FORM-26AS who would not be able to file his Income Tax Return immediately. Most of these deductee tax payers who are largely dependent on dividend Income, Interest Income and now Share market capital gains income which has also become subject to TDS on certain transactions as per sec.194LBB, the finalizing of the data for these types of tax payer gets delayed which results into late filing of the Income Tax Returns.
(13) Since the disruption of the Rain all over the country has been consistent since June, 2023 this time around and the number of revised and corrected TDS & TCS returns are huge and large as mentioned above in point no:12, the actual process of filing the returns starts from 15th June, 2023 ideally gives only one and a half months’ time on or before 31st July, 2023, a period by which all non-audited tax payers have to file their e-Returns.
(14) Further we would also like to bring it to the notice of Your Honor, that this year so far there have been number to times the utilities of TDS-TCS in the form of FVU files and the utilities of the Income Tax Returns have been changed. Due to this frequent changes of the utilities, the larger section of the Tax professionals who are using the private authorized software also got