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'Faceless, Fair, Fearless': PM's Big New Push For Tax Reforms

'Faceless, Fair, Fearless': PM's Big New Push For Tax Reforms

PM Narendra Modi launched "Transparent Taxation - Honoring The Honest" platform to reform the tax system.

Highlights

  • PM Modi launches "Transparent Taxation - Honoring The Honest" platform
  • Honest taxpayer plays a big role in nation-building, says PM
  • Faceless system to make taxpayer more confident, he adds
Prime Minister Narendra Modi rolled out a taxpayers charter and faceless assessment on Thursday as part of the government's effort to easing the compliance for assessees and reward the "honest taxpayer". The "faceless appeal facility" will be available to all citizens of the country on September 25, the Prime Minister said. In a big new push for tax reforms, PM Narendra Modi also launched the "Transparent Taxation - Honoring The Honest" platform, in what he said will strengthen efforts of "reforming and simplifying our tax system". "The country's honest taxpayer plays a big role in nation building... The new facilities being launched today reinforce the government's commitment to honoring the honest," PM Modi said.

Here are 10 things to know about the new tax reforms:

  1. "The Transparent Taxation platform is based on reforms such as faceless assessment, faceless appeal and taxpayers' charter... A 'faceless' tax system will give the taxpayer confidence on fairness and fearlessness," PM Modi said in a virtual address.

  2. He said the roll-out of the "Transparent Taxation - Honoring the Honest" platform is a new milestone in the structural reforms initiated by his government.

  3. "The government is now focussing on making tax-paying seamless, painless, faceless. Faceless as it shouldn't matter who is paying tax and who is tax officer," PM Modi said.

  4. "Taxpayers will now be given the respect they deserve. The taxpayer will now be trusted, not looked at with doubt. The tax department will have to carry out the steps and processes in a time-bound manner," the Prime Minister said. 

  5. The taxpayers' charter was announced in the Union Budget for fiscal year 2020-21 by the Finance Minister. The facility is likely to empower citizens by ensuring time-bound services by the Income Tax Department. 

  6. "Today is a landmark day in the history of tax administration," Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said, adding that the vision of the Prime Minister is to empower the taxpayers, to provide a transparent system and to honour the honest taxpayers.

  7. Tweeting with hashtag ''HonoringTheHonest'', the Finance Ministry said that faceless appeals would involve random allotment of cases. "With electronic replies, zero physical interface of authorities & instant solutions your way, this is the newest, most convenient & easiest way to tackle your IT litigation issues," it said.

  8. PM Modi said that over the past six years, the government has remained focused on "banking the unbanked, securing the unsecured and funding the unfunded". "In a way, today's launch marks a new beginning in this direction," the Prime Minister said.

  9. The government has undertaken various tax reforms in the past six years. The Centre has cut the corporate tax to 22 per cent from 30 per cent for existing companies, and 15 per cent for new manufacturing units and scraping of dividend distribution tax in recent times.

  10. The Central Board of Direct Taxes - the top policy-making body of the Income Tax Department - has simplified the income tax return-filing process, lowered taxes for the common man and launched its "Vivad Se Vishwas" scheme to expedite the resolution of pending tax disputes.