Why do we Need New Portal when the Old Portal was already doing extremely well? Why so much trial & error on the taxpayers?

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Why do we Need New Portal when the Old Portal was already doing extremely well? Why so much trial & error on the taxpayers?

 

 

We strongly believe that the Government need to deal with the new Income Tax Portal in the same way as it has done with the New Direct Tax Code in 2018 i.e., Dumb it.

 

The announcement for new portal was made so as to ensure

  1. Speedy processing of income tax return
  2. For speedy issue of refund
  3. For better taxpayers services

Before this, one may note that

  1. Income Tax return were getting in old portal within 2 days also. Taxpayers have already experienced the receipt of intimation of retrun processing even within one day as well.
  2. Income Tax refunds were also issued in earlier portal within 3 to 4 days. Lot many taxpayers have already witnessed it.
  3. Earlier portal was unparallel and was delivering up to the expectation of the taxpayers. It has been time tested and proved its utility. The only issue was filing the return at the peak hours of last date. Except this, there was not a single complain the old portal which has evolved over a period of time and was doing extremely well.

The much publicized new income tax portal has been finally launched & dedicated to the taxpayers of the country. The intention to shift over the new portal was announced well in advance and full-fledged time of around 7 days from 1st June to 7th June 2021 was already given to the vendor (Infosys) for the migration from old portal to the new portal.

Painful to say, still after 14 days of its launching, there is nothing which has met the expectations of the taxpayers. Rather, the new portal has turned out to be disastrous, resulting in harassment to the taxpayers and embarrassment for the entire country.

With pure wastage of Rs. 4242 Cr of taxpayers’ money, the following questions emerges. Before 22nd June 2021 meeting with Infosys, there are few suggestion which are given in the interest of the country:

1. No Need for New Portal:

The existing portal of income tax department in the form of www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.inwas working well without any issue and problem. The only trouble was with the filing during the peak hours of the last date of filing ITR.

In our humble submission, there is no need to change the portal considering the fact that;

a) Taxpayers are very well versed with the existing portal which is time tested, have established credentials & met the expectations of the taxpayers.

b) ITR was getting processed within a period of 2-3 days in the old portal as well. The arguments for shifting to a new portal for speedy processing may not be a real concern in the present scenario.

c) Refunds were also getting issued within a reasonable time period of less than 15 days in majority of the cases. The existing system can be improved so as to ensure an even earlier issue of the refund rather than totally scrapping the existing portal.

d) No one has ever complained about the old income tax portal and changing the portal without requirements or need is absurd and is going to de-settle everything for the taxpayers.

e) First ever season of the full-fledged faceless assessments for the AY 2018-19 has been successfully carried out on the previous e-Filing portal. It has by and large met a successful launch. Your Government deserves kudos for successfully implementing the faceless assessment scheme, faceless appeal scheme, faceless penalty scheme, etc. Needless to say, all this has been successfully carried out with the old portal and it has not let down anybody.

f) There were already numerous glitches & issues in the GSTN portal which is prevailing even after 4 years of its launching. Such issues have never arisen with the income tax portal which has witnessed smooth transition and acceptance of the taxpayers.

g) The additional feature of pre-filled income tax return form, artificial intelligence, multiple data access by various agencies, etc can very well be incorporated in the existing portal with suitable consultation. Totally revamping the old portal with new portal for the sake of few new requirements would be very harmful and would disrupt the entire compliance process.

Shifting to the new portal without recognizing the successful journey of the old income tax portal may be disastrous. The present move, in our humbly submission, will shake the compliances & confidence of the taxpayers. It is setting the moment of the development in a reverse gear. We, on behalf of all the taxpayers of the region, humbly request you to kindly revert back & restore to the old portal.

2. May shift the launching of the New Portal if above suggestion is not acceptable:

Even if the suggestion of continuing the new portal is not acceptable, we humbly request you  to kindly defer the implementation schedule by around 6 months to 1stJanuary 2022 so that existing compliances of return filing, trust registration, appeal, rectification etc could be completed. The past performance & delivery mechanism of the existing vendor vis a vis GST may be reviewed on this occasion to understand the gravity & importance of launching the new portal.

3. Other suggestions for improvement:

There are various issues which are prevailing in the new portal and the same has been brought to your kind consideration by various other associations & organizations. Hence, we would not like to take your valuable time on repeating the same issues through our representation.

We have full faith and confidence in the mode of transparent working with which your Government is working.  Above suggestions and feedback may not kindly be taken as criticisms but may be considered as genuine suggestions as your partner in Nation Building.

We believe that the suggestion would find your appropriate consideration.

Thanking You

Yours Faithfully

The Team Tax Talk

www.TheTaxTalk.com

Copy to –

  1. Shri. Anurag Thakur, Hon’ble Union Minister of State for Finance, Government of India
  2. Shri. Tarun Bajaj, Revenue Secretary, Department of Revenue, Ministry of Finance, Government of India
  3. Shri. J B Mohapatra, Chairman – Central Board of Direct Taxes
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