With reference to Shrimi Choudhary’s article, “Why it pays to pay your income tax” (November 10), it is a good idea to reward honest taxpayers. The finance ministry should implement the proposal of the Income Tax Department to pay monetary rewards to such taxpayers.
I want to draw attention to a related subject: Penalty
for non-compliance. An amendment to the Income Tax Act
that will be effective from the assessment year 2018-19 provides for a minimum penalty
of Rs 1,000 for delayed submission or non-submission of income tax returns. Penalty
for non-compliance of such a rule should always depend on the tax payable. Individuals who do not pay their income tax dues and also do not submit their income tax return
in time or do not submit it at all should be liable to pay the tax due, in addition to the penalty
and the interest for delayed payment. This is a fair provision.
But suppose the tax liability of a senior citizen
is zero and she has not submitted her return in time, how could she be asked to pay a penalty?
payable should always depend on the tax due. If the tax due is zero, there is no case for imposing a penalty
for a technical failure of non-submission of income tax return
within the stipulated time.
Citizens should protest the unfair amendment of the penalty
Narendra M Apte Pune
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