Indian govt to leverage technology to catch tax evaders

Summary:Finance Minister P. Chidambaram urges the country's tax collectors to tap IT tools to reach target of collecting 100 percent taxes.

India's Finance Minister P. Chidambaram has asked income tax officials to use modern tools to detect tax evaders and ensure 100 percent tax collection.

The Indian government hopes technology can finally help crack the whip on tax evaders. According to a news report in The Economic Times, Chidambaram told top officials from the income tax office to keep a close tab on those who were not filing tax returns and ensure the targeted tax collection for the current financial year is met.

Chidambaram asked the officials to use modern technology tools to detect tax evaders in order to widen the tax base and deepen tax collections.

"This year, you have to ensure that the 100 percent [tax] collection target is achieved," he said at a conference Tuesday which was attended by chief commissioners and director generals of income tax. The minister said the department should especially focus on those not filing returns or those who had stopped filing for some reason.

"We are in favor of intelligence and technology-based tax collection system which is both non-intrusive and non-evasive," Chidambaram said, and added that the Central Board of Direct Taxes had assured him it would not only achieve the targets for 2013-14 but would also make every effort to exceed the target.

The minister said tax revenues were key to building a strong economy, and asked the officials to focus on quality assessments and issue quality orders along with speed. The top 6,000 companies that contributed 90 percent of the government's corporate tax collections will face closer scrutiny by income tax authorities.

The department is also looking to closely monitor high-value transactions and has sent notices to those found with a dummy PAN (permanent account number) and to those who do not possess a PAN.

Topics: Tech Industry, India

About

Swati Prasad is a New Delhi-based freelance journalist who spent much of the mid-1990s and 2000s covering brick-and-mortar industries for some of India's leading publications. Seven years back when she took to freelancing, India was at the peak of its "outsourcing hub" glory and the world of Indian IT, telecom and Internet fascinated her.... Full Bio

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