CBDT Directive Regarding Paperless Assessment Proceedings

In order to improve the taxpayer services, enhance the efficiency and to usher in a paperless environment for carrying out the assessment proceedings, CBDT has decided to initiate the concept of using email for corresponding with taxpayers and sending through emails the questionnaires, notice etc. at the time of scrutiny proceedings and getting responses from them using the same medium on a pilot basis. This would eliminate the necessity of visiting the Income-tax Offices by the taxpayers, particularly in smaller cases, involving limited issues and where taxpayer is able to provide details required by the AO without necessitating his physical presence


F. No. 225/267/2015-ITA-II
Government of India
Ministry of Finance
Department of Revenue
Central Board of Direct Taxes
North Block, New Delhi, Dated the 19th of October, 2015

To
The Principal Chief Commissioners of Income-tax,
Delhi / Mumbai / Bengaluru / Ahmedabad / Chennai

Sir/Madam,

Subject: Use of email based communication for paperless Assessment Proceedings-reg

In order to improve the taxpayer services, enhance the efficiency and to usher in a paperless environment for carrying out the assessment proceedings, CBDT has decided to initiate the concept of using email for corresponding with taxpayers and sending through emails the questionnaires, notice etc. at the time of scrutiny proceedings and getting responses from them using the same medium on a pilot basis. This would eliminate the necessity of visiting the Income-tax Offices by the taxpayers, particularly in smaller cases, involving limited issues and where taxpayer is able to provide details required by the AO without necessitating his physical presence.

2. Steps are being taken by CBDT to devise suitable mechanism for setting up a standardized platform for making such email based communications between the taxpayer and the Income-tax Department seamless and user friendly. To start with, it has been decided to launch a pilot project in this regard in five non-corporate charges at Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad & Chennai stations. Initially, 100 cases for e-hearing could be identified in each of these charges and major part of assessment processing should be conducted in electronic mode. Also, the cases covered under the aforesaid pilot project should be those which have been selected for scrutiny on the basis of AIR/CIB information or non-matching with 26AS-data. Consent of taxpayers should also be obtained in the beginning and cases of only willing taxpayers be considered under the pilot project. The officers of the Department, through their official e-mail IDs, can interact with the taxpayers at their e-mail IDs as mentioned in the respective returns of income.

3. Board desires that necessary steps may accordingly be taken for initiating the pilot project on top priority.

(Rohit Garg)
Deputy Secretary to the Government of India


11 comments on “CBDT Directive Regarding Paperless Assessment Proceedings
  1. veeramani says:

    The CBDT should advise the Officers not to ask the assessees file copies of past records for finalising the assessment on hand. They should get these from their own data base. In the hearing of Trust case every year the officer is calling for copy of 12A Regn certificate, copy of the certificate of Charity Commissioner, Trust Deed etc. apart from copy of earlier years returns and accounts. In effect the officer is trying to reconstruct the file every year.

  2. sushil shah says:

    This is welcome step. Appeal proceeding , video conferencing need to be implemented.

  3. ca mahendra badjatya says:

    This was long awaited.if this is successfully implemented at all levels in direct taxes regime then it will be a great achivement of the government. the honest tax payers will be highly happy. though the practice area of practitioners will be shrinked but in the national interest it is always welcome by all the stakeholders and the officers lobby also.

  4. veeramani says:

    The proposal is most welcome. The harassment of furnishing copies of the returns, and its annexures etc. the past assessment records etc. will be done away with since these are available in database.

    One more suggestion is to extend the scheme for hearing before the CIT(A. The appellants could submit their written submissions with proof and the appeal could be decided on that basis. The CIT(a) could call for data online. This could reduce pendency and corruption to a great extent.

  5. sriram says:

    It is a good beginning of the CBDT. It is a one kind of adopting the digital india mission.

    thanks

    sriram

  6. RAKESH KUMAR KHIWANI says:

    LET THE CBDT SHOULD ALLOW THE ASSESSEE TO VOLUNTEER FOR PARTICIPATION IN THIS PILOT PROJECT. I AM WILLING TO DO SO IN MY CASES.

  7. A SANKARANARAYANA says:

    Dear Sirs, Certain people assessed the tax properly under the fear that they would call for scrunity any point of time. If it goes on online, they may declare anything depends upon their financial position at the time of payment of self-assessement tax and advance tax.

  8. manish parekh says:

    Firstly with implementation of on-line returns & on-line refunds, the lower level harassment ( read corruption) was minimised. Now with this step of e-assessments, the next level’s harassment will be reduced (hopefully!) Although the officers are not following the CBDT circular no. 7/2014 dated 26.09.2014 wherein CBDT had instructed officers to restrict the scrutiny to AIR/CIB information for CASS cases, which is not followed during and they are asking for other details – but – hope that we will have a dawn of new day wherein the British ERA powers enjoyed by the government officers are withdrawn.

  9. Rajesh bhardwaj says:

    Sir, it is a most welcome step taken by CBDT. It will put a stop to present practices of making phone calls, not making entries in order sheet when reply is filed or worse not allowing reply to be received in dak or not dictating order within a week of final ehearing. This should be extended to all scrutiny cases under CASS without delay in all cities to bring about transparency in proceedings and accountability in the tax department. there doesn’t appear o be need for a ” pilot” as the tax gatherers and tax payers after decades of computerisation are sufficiently acquainted with the working of emails. CBDT may reconsider and expedite implementation Pan- india.

  10. Nem Singh says:

    Welcomable decision and important notification to reduce the unnecessary visit in department.

  11. Ashwani Joshi says:

    A welcome step. The non-adversarial regime will be countered to a great extent. It will also help curb corruption. Kudos to CBDT.

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