Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch a new tax scheme to honour and encourage honest taxpayers of the country on Thursday, August 13. The platform, 'Transparent Taxation - Honoring the Honest, will be launched via video conferencing.
The launch of the platform by PM Modi will further carry forward the journey of direct tax reforms in India, a government statement said. The launch of the new platform comes in the wake of the central government's push to come up with a charter of rights for honest taxpayers.
Calling honest taxpayers the nation-builders, the Prime Minister had earlier thanked them as he said they had helped finance schemes like free foodgrain for the poor amid the coronavirus pandemic in India. The event will be witnessed by various Chambers of Commerce, Trade Associations, Chartered Accountants' associations, and eminent taxpayers as well, apart from the officers and officials of the Income Tax Department.
Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs Nirmala Sitharaman and Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs, Anurag Singh Thakur will also be present on the occasion.
Recent tax reforms in India
- The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has carried out several tax reforms indirect taxes (sentence not clear) in recent years. Last year, corporate tax rates were reduced from 30 per cent to 22 per cent and for new manufacturing units, the rates were reduced to 15 per cent. The Dividend Distribution Tax (DDT) was also abolished.
- The focus of the tax reforms has been on reduction in tax rates and on simplification of direct tax laws. Several initiatives have been taken by the CBDT to bring in efficiency and transparency in the functioning of the department. This includes bringing more transparency in official communication through the newly introduced Document Identification Number (DIN), wherein every communication by the department would carry a computer generated unique document identification number.
- To increase the ease of compliance for taxpayers, the I-T Department has come up with prefilling of income tax returns to make compliance more convenient. Compliance norms for startups have also been simplified.
- To provide for the resolution of pending tax disputes, the I-T Department has brought out the Direct Tax "Vivad se Vishwas Act, 2020", under which declarations for settling disputes are currently being filed.
- To effectively reduce taxpayer grievances/litigation, the monetary thresholds for filing of departmental appeals in various appellate courts have also been raised.
- The I-T Department has also made efforts to ease compliance for taxpayers during the COVID-19 times by extending statutory timeliness for filing returns while also releasing refunds expeditiously to increase liquidity in the hands of taxpayers.