The Finance Ministry said on Monday that it would keep sending income tax letters to assesses who have defaulted in paying tax. “We are using advertisements, technology, sending out letters and are getting encouraging results as the number of returns filed is actually showing an increase,” Revenue Secretary Sumit Bose said at an event organised by ASSOCHAM in the capital.
The income tax department, under instructions from Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram has already dispatched over one lakh letter to defaulters in the last few months. The ministry has asked assesses for reasons as to why they have failed to file their income tax returns. The government has said that over 12 lakh Permanent Account Number (PAN) card holders haven’t filed their returns. Chidambaram had also said recently that over 10,000 assesses have divulged their income and filed returns after getting the letter.
“We had sent about one lakh letters of about 12 lakh cases of high value transactions we have come across but didn’t find evidences of tax returns being filed...We have seen an increase in the number of returns after we had sent out letters and we expect to able to encourage non-filers and stop-filers in service tax to come and pay their due share of taxes well before December,” Bose said.
He also said that his department is striving to widen the tax base in order to increase revenues. “As the tax base widens, hopefully in near future tax rates could fall,” Bose said.