Income Tax Dept warns public against cash dealings of Rs 2 lakh or more saying that the receiver of the amount will have to cough up an equal amount as penalty. CBDT further extends the time for Linking PAN with Aadhaar till 30th June, 2018.

Messages luring people with fake promises of IT refunds prowling, alert issued

The country's premier cyber security agency - CERT-In - has cautioned against a malicious 'SMShing' fraud where fake messages are being sent to people in the name of the Income Tax Department saying their refunds have been approved, with an aim to steal the recipient's vital personal details and put them on the dark net "for sale".

The warning, that also acts as an advisory, comes at a time when the income tax returns filing season is on and the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has sometime back extended the deadline to do till August 31.
Recently, some people wrote on social media platforms that they had received such messages.

The Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In), the national nodal agency for responding to computer security incidents, said once a person clicks on the SMShing (made of SMS and phishing) link, he/she runs the risk of either his/her personal details being "put up for sale on the dark web" (clandestine web), or even their IT department records "altered" by misusing their e-filing credentials.

The advisory describes as to how such fake SMSes could be identified.

"There have been increased reports of incidents related to fake SMS purportedly from Income Tax Department as the filing of IT returns nears. This SMShing campaign uses popular URL (universal resource locator) shortening services such as bit.ly, goo.gl, ow.ly and t.co among others," it said.

It then goes on to describe the modus operandi of such attack.

"The message in the SMS tells the recipient that their income tax refund for a certain amount has been approved and will be credited shortly in his bank account. This is followed by an incorrect bank account number. Message reads to the recipient to verify the given bank account number and if found wrong, then visit the shortened bit.ly link given in the message to update his bank record.

"The bit.ly link is leading to phishing web-pages. Since the bank account number in the SMS is wrong, a number of recipients are enticed to click on the website link. Clicking on the link in the SMS, opens a website which is lookalike to the Income Tax Department e-filing website," it said.
The recipient, the advisory said, is asked to enter their bank details to complete their income tax refund application and then enter their login ID and password on the next phishing web-page.

"Thereafter, the details entered by the victim SMS recipient are harvested as sensitive data by the cyber criminals running this campaign for a later use in identity-thefts or for putting up for sale on the dark web or for even altering the user's details in the Income Tax Department's records," it said.

A senior tax department official told PTI that the department is aware of these malicious SMS-based and online attacks on personal taxpayers and others and they are in touch with the CERT-In authorities and have also issued public advisories in this context.

The advisory has also stated some do's and dont's.

It says, "Do not reply to the suspicious SMS and emails and such social engineering tactics can be identified as these SMS and emails have errors grammatical or spelling errors; even if the SMS or emails came from someone you know, be wary about opening the attachment or click on links as some malicious emails may be spoofing the sender.

"Also, do not click on any links and in case if the hyperlink has been clicked then do not enter confidential information like bank account, credit card details among others; use anti-virus software and a firewall for the mobile device and for every other device used for accessing emails and keep them updated for protection against inadvertently accepting any unwanted files that gets downloaded in the SMShing, phishing links," it said.

Read more at:
//economictimes.indiatimes.com
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PCsIT to furnish details of the “least performing”CsIT(A)


The CBDT has issued a directive to the PCsIT seeking details of the “least performing”CsIT(A). It is not specified as to what constitutes “least performing”.

Presumably, the reference is to the number of appeals disposed of by the Ld CsIT(A) vis-à-vis the targets and achievement.

Presumably, the defaulting CsIT(A) will be subject to disciplinary action.

It may be recalled that in the Central Action Plan 2018, the CBDT has chalked out an ambitious strategy to require CsIT(A) to dispose appeals within specified time frames.

The demand amount locked up in the appeals before the CsIT(A) is a staggering sum of Rs. 6.38 lakh crore.

The CBDT has also promised to give “incentives” to CsIT(A) for passing “quality” orders.

However, the definition of “quality” orders has left much to be desired.

The CBDT has stated that “Quality cases would include cases where-

(a)enhancement has been made,

(b)order has been strengthened, in the opinion of the CCIT, or

(c)penalty u/s 271(1)I has been levied by the CIT(A)“.

This implies that CsIT(A) will now go on a rampage and enhance assessments and levy penalty so as to earn “incentives” and stay in the good books of the CBDT.

Needless to say, this is a disturbing state of affairs for hapless taxpayers. It is hoped that the CBDT will issue appropriate clarification that the “quality” of the orders will be determined on whether the orders are ultimately upheld by higher appellate forums or not.
Government of India
Ministry of Finance
Department of Revenue
Central Board of Direct Taxes
New Delhi the 27th July, 2018

To,

All Pr. Chief Commissioners of Income Tax Madam/Sir
Sub: Performance of Commissioners of Income Tax(Appeals) during the current Financial Year- reg.

Kindly refer to the Video Conference held today.

I am directed to request you to furnish the details of 2 least performing CsIT(Appeals) of your region (5 in Delhi &Mumbai Regions) in the following format:

1
2

3
4

5

6
7
Sr. No.
Name          of
Officer charge including additional charge
the and held
Action points
Target

Achievement

Reasons     for
shortfall,       if
any            and
efforts made to achieve the targets
Commen
is                 of Pr.
CCIT    in
respect
of     item
in Col.-6
No.       of
units
No. cases
of
No.        of
units
No. cases
of



Disposal of Appeals








Information in respect of substantive charge and additional charge should be furnished separately. The above information may kindly be furnished by 3rd August, 2018 by e-mail at vagya.sharma@gov.in or commcoord-cbdt@nic.in.
Source:http://itatonline.org
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CBDT Warns AOs To Adhere To Time Limits For Issue Of TDS Certificates U/s 195 &197

The CBDT has issued an Office Memorandum dated 26th July 2018 in which it is stated that there are several instances where the time-limit of 30 days stipulated in the Citizens Charter for issue of TDS certificates have been breached and there is inordinate delay.

The CBDT has directed AOs that the aforesaid time-limit must be adhered to scrupulously. It is made clear that any delay without valid reasons will be viewed seriously and the CIT concerned will be held accountable.


F. No. 275/20/2018-IT(B)

Government of India,
Ministry of Finance,
Department of Revenue,
Central Board of Direct Taxes
New Delhi

26th, July, 2018

Office Memorandum

Subject: Adherence to prescribed time-line for issue of certificate of no deduction or deduction of tax at lower rate u/s 197 and 195 of the I.T. Act-1961.

The undersigned is directed to refer to the time-line of 30 days prescribed as per the Citizen’s Charter-2014 for issue of certificates for no deduction of tax or deduction of tax at lower rate under section 197 or 195 of the IT Act 1961. Several instances of inordinate delay in issue of such certificates and non-adherence to the said time-line have been brought to the notice of the Board, which have been viewed adversely.

2. In this regard, the undersigned is directed to reiterate that the aforesaid time-line for issue of certificates u/s 197 or 195 of the Act must be adhered to scrupulously. Disposal of applications beyond the said time limit of 30 days must be for justifiable reasons to be recorded in writing and duly approved by CIT (TDS)/ CIT (Intl. Tax) concerned.

3. Any delay without valid reasons will be viewed seriously and CIT (TDS)/ CIT (Intl. Tax) concerned will be held accountable.

This issues with the approval of the Chairman, CBDT.

(Md. Tarique Kalim)
Director (Budget) CBDT.
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Govt extends deadline for filing income tax returns by a month to August 31


The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has extended the due date for filing of Income Tax Returns to August 31, 2018, for categories of taxpayers who were to file their returns by July 31.
The decision comes days ahead of the July 31 deadline, which several groups had requested the government to push to later.

CBDT had notified the new income tax return forms for assessment year 2018-19 on April 5. Experts said the introduction of new forms was leading to delays in filing of returns.

Further, the CBDT had said non-filing of ITR before the due date from this assessment year would lead to a penalty of Rs 1,000, 5,000 and Rs 10,000, depending on when the returns were filed after the deadline. The fine for taxpayers having income under Rs 5 lakh remained at Rs 1,000.
Source: www.moneycontrol.com
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Govt. raises threshold monetary limits for filing Departmental Appeals before Appellate Tribunals (ITAT/ CESTAT)/ HC/ SC:


To reduce litigation, facilitate ease of doing business and to remove long pending grievances of taxpayers in the matters of direct/ indirect taxes, the Govt. has decided to raise threshold monetary limits for filing Departmental Appeals before the Appellate Tribunals (ITAT/ CESTAT), High Courts and Supreme Court, as under:

GOI Press Release dt. 11 July 2017

In order to reduce the long pending grievances of taxpayers and to minimise litigations pertaining to tax matters and to facilitate the Ease of Doing Business, Government of India has decided to increase the threshold monetary limits for filing Departmental Appeals at various levels, be it Appellate Tribunals, High Courts and the Supreme Court in the following manner :-
Sl. No.
Appeal Fora
Present limit for filing appeal (Rs.)
Enhanced limit (Rs.)
1.
ITAT / CESTAT
10 lakhs
20 lakhs
2.
High Courts
20 lakhs
50 lakhs
3.
Supreme Court
25 lakhs
1 Crore

This is a major step in the direction of litigation management of both direct and indirect taxes as it will effectively reduce minor litigations and help the Department to focus on high value litigations. 
In case of CBDT, out of total cases filed by the Department in ITAT, 34% of cases will be withdrawn. In case of High Courts, 48% of cases will be withdrawn and in case of Supreme Court 54% of cases will be withdrawn. The total percentage of reduction of litigation from Department’s side will get reduced by 41%. However, this will not apply in such cases where substantial point of law is involved.

Similarly, in case of CBIC, out of total cases filed by the Department in CESTAT, 16% of cases will be withdrawn. In case of High Courts, 22% of cases will be withdrawn and in case of Supreme Court 21% of cases will be withdrawn. The total percentage of reduction of litigation from Department’s side will get reduced by 18%. However, this will not apply in such cases where substantial point of law is involved.

This step will also reduce future litigation flow from the Department side.

Accordingly, the CBDT and CBIC have issued the requisite instructions as under:

CBIC Instructions dt. 11 July 2017

CBDT Circular No. 3/2018 dt. 11 July 2018 

Past Circulars on Threshold Monetary Limit for Filing Departmental Appeals before Tribunals/ HC/ SC

CBDT Clarification on Circular 21/2015 dt. 10 Dec. 2015 reg. Revision of Monetary Limits for filing of Cross Objections before the ITAT and References to the High Courts: CBDT Clarification on Circular 21/2015 dt 8th March 2016

CBDT’s Revised Tax Effect based Monetary Limits for Filing of Appeals / SLP by IT Deptt. before ITAT/ HC / SC: CBDT Circular 21/2015 dt. 10 Dec. 2015

Enhanced monetary limits for appeals before CESTAT/ HC/ SC: CBEC Instruction dt. 17th Dec., 2015
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Proposed amendments to Income-tax Rules, 1962 - Inviting comments of stakeholders

Government of India
Ministry of Finance
Department of Revenue
Central Board of Direct Taxes
New Delhi, 13th June, 2018

PRESS RELEASE

Proposed amendments to Income-tax Rules, 1962 - Inviting comments of stakeholders

Income-tax Rules, 1962 (I.T.Rules) prescribe Form No.36 for filing an appeal to the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT). Further, a memorandum of crossobjections to the ITAT can be filed in Form No.36A.

The existing Form No.36 and Form No 36A have not been revised since long. These Forms are required to be rationalised to make them more informative and also to capture information regarding amount disputed in pending appeals before ITAT, which is vital for formulating the policy of the department for litigation management.

In view of the above, a draft notification proposing amendments in Form No. 36, Form No.36A and Rule 47 of the IT Rules has been uploaded on the website of the Income Tax Department www.incometaxindia.gov.in for comments from stakeholders and general public. 

The comments and suggestions on the draft notification may be sent by 2nd July, 2018 electronically at the email address ts.mapwal@nic.in.


(Surabhi Ahluwalia)
Commissioner of Income Tax
(Media & Technical Policy)
Official Spokesperson, CBDT.
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Revision in PAN application fee


Refer to Circular No.: NSDL/TIN/2018/012 dated Jun 13, 2018, related to Revised PAN application fees .

Income Tax Department (ITD) has decided to revise the PAN application fee to be collected from applicants.

The PAN applicants shall now have the option to get a physical PAN card or an e-PAN card while submission of PAN application.

Following is the revised PAN application fees - applicable from June 16, 2018 (i.e., EOD of June 15, 2018).

FEES AND CHARGES

TIN-FC shall collect the fees as per the following schedule from deductors/collectors/ filers/Accounts Officers/applicants along-with GST and other levies as applicable:

Sr. No
Particulars
Fees (Rs.)  
GST @ 18%*(Rs.)  
Total (Rs.)
Amount to be charged (Rs.)


1
2
3
4
PAN Applications – Applicant opts for physical PAN Card
1
Dispatch of physical PAN Card in India

(Communication address is Indian address)
91
16.38
107.38
107
2
Dispatch of physical PAN Card outside India

(where foreign address is provided as address for communication)
862
155.16
1017.16
1017
PAN Applications – Applicant opts for only e-PAN Card (No physical card requested)
1
Communication address is Indian Address
61
10.98
71.98
72
2
Communication address is foreign address
61
10.98
71.98
72
TAN applications
1
TAN Applications
55
9.9
64.9
65

e-TDS/e-TCS/Form 24G & AIR/SFT
1
0-100 records
42.37
7.63
50
50
2
101-1000 records
178
32.04
210.04
210
3
More than 1000 records
578.5
104.13
682.63
683


NOTE:- If applicant opt for only e-PAN Card, then it would be mandatory to provide customer email ID in the PAN application for such cases.

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