Published On : Sat, Nov 14th, 2015

SHCV President hails PM’s directive to CBDT over tax assessments

Nagpur: Rajesh K. Lakhotia, President of Steel & Hardware Chamber of Vidarbha, expressing gratitude to Prime Minister welcomed the departmental instruction issued by CBDT to constitute Local Committees to address taxpayers’ grievance against high-pitched assessment orders and appealed Mayor and Municipal Commissioner, Nagpur Municipal Corporation to adopt the crux of the said instruction while framing assessment orders under LBT.

He said “It was common experience of business community that Assessing Officers have built up a tendency to make huge additions and disallowances on frivolous grounds and raise huge tax demands. Then adopt coercive measures to recover the said demands, this caused immense hardship to taxpayers”.  He attributed the policy ‘Collect Taxes; Get Promotion & Choice Posting’ announced in February 2012 by the then newly appointed CBDT Chairman as major force behind this behavioral change in Assessing Officer’s. However he did not ruled out the other reason that such orders are used by some unscrupulous officers to demand bribes from the taxpayers.

There are slew of Court orders passing strictures discouraging the tendency to pass frivolous assessment orders, even these strictures never deterred Assessing Officers from passing high-pitched assessment orders, he added.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi taking note of long pending demand from business community for accountability of assessing officers, recently promised to make assessing officers accountable for the orders that they pass. And in follow-up action CBDT on 9.11.2015 issued instruction No.: 17/2015 for constitution of Local Committee under every Principal Chief Commissioner Income Tax (Pr. CCIT) across the country to deal with taxpayers grievances against high-pitched assessment orders.

Sanjay K. Agrawal, Secretary of Chamber informed that, the committee shall consist of three members and deal with grievance petitions related to high-pitched assessment orders completed within its jurisdiction. The committee is also directed to dispose-off the petitions within two months and in the event if committee finds merit in the petition then a duty is casted upon the committee to present its findings before appellate authority to curtail future litigation.

Steel & Hardware Chamber of Vidarbha requests Pr. CCIT, Vidarbha to constitute the Local Committee for Vidarbha Region at the earliest, give wide publicity to this measure and also requested to ensure that the committee functions without any bias.