The Income Tax Department will no longer have any paper-based communications with taxpayers.
From 1 October communication issued by any income-tax authority relating to assessment, appeals, orders, statutory or otherwise, exemptions, enquiry, investigation, verification of information, penalty, prosecution, rectification and approval to the assessee will be communicated electronically.
All communications made by the tax department to assessees from 1 October will carry a Document Identification Number (DIN).
With a view to bringing greater transparency in the functioning of the tax administration and improvement in service delivery, almost all notices and orders of the Income Tax Department are being generated electronically on the Income Tax Business Application (ITBA) platform.
However, it has been brought to the notice of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) that there have been some instances in which the notice/letter was found to have been issued manually, without maintaining a proper audit trail of such communication, it said in a release.
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had assured honest and law-biding taxpayers that they will not be harassed by the tax department.
The CBDT has now laid down parameters specifying the manner in which any communication issued by any income-tax authority to the assessee will be dealt with.
“All such communication issued on or after the 1st of October, 2019 shall carry a computer-generated DIN duly quoted in the body of such communication,” the release said.
The CBDT has also specified exceptional circumstances where the communication could be issued manually. “Any communication which is not in conformity with the prescribed guidelines shall be treated as invalid and shall be deemed to have never been issued,” it added.
Further, CBDT has also laid down the timelines and procedure by which such communication issued manually will have to be regularised and intimated to the Principal Director General of Income-tax (Systems).
–With PTI inputs