Tuesday, 27 July 2021 01:30 AM IST

Pursuing course of cautious optimism amid COVID-19: CBDT chairman

The Income Tax Department is charting the path of "cautious optimism" as it is witnessing robust growth in tax collections at one hand with different variables at play in the economy on the other amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, CBDT chairman J B Mohapatra said on Thursday. He was speaking at 'The Chairman Speaks' session that is part of a maiden public communication webinar 'Samvaad' with various stakeholders involved in direct taxes administration.

The department is geared up to take on the challenge of domestic resource mobilisation in these uncertain times, he said.

"While we have robust growth figures in tax collection at this moment, we are pursuing the course of cautious optimism.

"As we celebrate the growth in revenue, we are also aware not to lose sight of the hundreds of variables presently at play in the economy and that we are still in the middle of a global pandemic," Chairman Jagannath Bidyadhar Mohapatra said.

The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) frames policy for the tax department and functions under the Union finance ministry.

"The department has been able to achieve significant growth in our tax collections as compared to the last year," the CBDT chief said.

Our first quarter advance tax collections for this year have grown by over 146 per cent. The gross direct tax collection as of June 15 has seen a 57 per cent jump over the same period last year, he said.

The net direct tax collections, Mohapatra said, as on June 15 have seen a jump of 100.4 per cent as compared to the same period last year.

He said these results are the "outcome of several reforms taken over the course over several years" in the IT Department.

He gave the example of dispute resolution scheme 'Vivad se Vishwas', the blackmoney declaration scheme brought out by the government some time back and the recently-introduced faceless assessment and faceless appeal scheme.

"Reforms are a continuous process...these are long drawn structural reforms which were long needed.

"These reforms strengthen the overall tax administration making us more resilient than even before," Mohapatra said.

At the heart of the department's functioning is the goal to ease tax compliance, which is even more significant in these difficult times of COVID-19 spread, the chairman said. Source-PTI Inputs