The taxman will seek data on deposits made by an assessee during the demonetisation period as part of the new Income Tax Returns (ITRs) that would be notified soon for assessment year 2017-18.
Officials said the tax department is understood to have introduced a new column for obtaining details of all deposits made by an individual or entity during the demonetisation period between November 8 and December 30 last year.
Sources indicated that the new column will also be introduced in the simplest form for individuals having salary income, called the ITR-1 or ‘Sahaj’.
They said while the I-T department has given a number of opportunities to taxpayers o explain any unaccounted deposits made during the notes ban period like under the ‘Operation Clean Money’ and the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojna (PMGKY), the move to introduce the new column is to ascertain all deposits made by a person or entity irrespective of the threshold.
“This is just an effort to ascertain what deposits were made during the demonetisation period. The department has not issued notices in cases where the deposit amounts were small,” a senior officer said.
They said the new ITR forms will continue having a column asking taxpayers to mention their Aadhaar number but, they said, this time it would be mandatory and not optional like it was last time.
The e-verification of ITRs using the Aadhaar will continue, they said.
The new ITR-1 or ‘Sahaj’, the officials said, has also been made simpler by bringing together the columns for all deductions and details about assets and liabilities.
They said all the ITRs are expected to be launched by April 1 keeping in mind the thrust of the department and its policy-making body, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), that timely filing of ITRs is important to enhance the “non-intrusive information-driven approach for improving tax compliance and effective utilisation of information in tax administration.
“It is expected that all the nine different ITRs will be launched in one go by the department with the start of the new financial year 2017-18 from April 1 and taxpayers can file their ITRs till the stipulated deadline of July 31,” they added.