This refers to the editorial, “Licence to harass” (March 4). In the past, the revenue department has withdrawn many of its appeals pending at various levels for the reason that the issue involved in a squarely similar case had been finalised by the ruling of the apex court. This step was fair enough on the part of department. Now, it has cast on taxpayers the responsibility to come forward and pay the dues and withdraw their appeals if the issue involved had been decided by the apex court against them even if it is against the advice of their counsels or consultants. The scheme launched is a call the assesses/taxpayers have to take. Any prudent taxpayer will rush to avail of this opportunity if the case against him is sound and genuine. The scheme should be given widespread publicity but linking performance appraisal and career prospects of the officials with the response of the taxpayers is certainly not a great idea. Pressing officials to make the taxpayers accept the scheme may have a demoralising effect on the officials apart from tax terrorism as mentioned. If such an opportunity is not availed of by the taxpayers on a large scale, it should be understood that either a majority of cases made by department are fabricated and untenable or the taxpayer wants to frustrate the revenue department using the legal recourse available to them.
Bijay Kr Sinha, Delhi
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