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Tax Clearance to exceed estimates, CBDT chairman says

NEW DELHI : The Center’s collection of direct taxes will significantly exceed budget estimates this year, Nitin Gupta, chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), said Tuesday.

Speaking to reporters at the tax lounge set up by the income tax department at the ongoing India International Trade Fair in the capital, Gupta said that direct tax receipts, consisting of personal and corporate income tax receipts, after refunds, are expected to increase by more than 25% compared to the Union’s budget estimates for this financial year.

“For the current year, we think we would exceed the budget estimate by a significant margin. It can be 25-30% higher. Next year, given the dynamics of tax collection, we would give a good collection to the government,” Gupta said. The direct tax target of the Center for this tax is 14.2 trillion.

Official data had shown earlier this month that net direct tax collections were up 26% through November 10 from a year ago to 8.71 trillion, representing 61.3% of the total budget estimate for the full fiscal year. Data released last Friday also showed gross direct tax collections ahead of net tax refunds 10.54 trillion so far this year, a 30.6% improvement over gross collections in the same period a year ago.

Gupta also said that the IRS is revamping the tax return forms. “We have launched the common return form for stakeholder consultation and are expecting views on this by 15 December. Once we get it, we’ll work on it more. This year we have done the taxpayer a great deal of service in the field of (quick) declaration processing and refunds. That will continue,” Gupta said.

Gupta said that as online gaming comes into the spotlight, the IRS is working to see how to establish a better audit trail for money spent and earned from such online activities, PTI news agency reported.

“Online gambling and betting is a new entrant, and we will take a look at the budget preparation phase and look at how to control evasion while making it easier for taxpayers to keep accounts and pay taxes,” the PTI report said with reference to Gupta.

The department has expanded areas where withholding tax (TDS) applies, he said.

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