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IT Portal Glitches: CBDT Assures Gujarat High Court To Resolve Issues Of Assessees, Specifies Its Grievance Mechanism

Sparsh Upadhyay
21 Jan 2022 11:50 AM GMT
IT Portal Glitches: CBDT Assures Gujarat High Court To Resolve Issues Of Assessees, Specifies Its Grievance Mechanism
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The Central Board Of Direct Taxes (CBDT) today assured the Gujarat High Court that it shall attend to the grievances of the assessee (intending to file ITR and Tax Audit Reports) regarding the technical glitches existing on the Income Tax Portal.The Bench of Justice J. B. Pardiwala and Justice Nisha M. Thakore was also told about the grievance mechanism that has been employed by the Board...

The Central Board Of Direct Taxes (CBDT) today assured the Gujarat High Court that it shall attend to the grievances of the assessee (intending to file ITR and Tax Audit Reports) regarding the technical glitches existing on the Income Tax Portal.

The Bench of Justice J. B. Pardiwala and Justice Nisha M. Thakore was also told about the grievance mechanism that has been employed by the Board to deal with the existing and potential issues with regard to the technical glitches of the Income Tax Portal.

With this, the Court disposed of two petitions, filed seeking a waiver of interest u/s 234A of IT Act (levied for delay in filing the return of incomes) and also permission to allow the physical filing of returns and audit reports due to the technical glitch. as per the assurances given by CBDT 

CBDT through its Chairman stated in reply that a team of 6 officials has been made to look into grievances of taxpayers and consultants, also they have, after considering the request of petitioners, created a separate email id : [email protected] for the same.
However, the Court suggested creating a separate mail ID for the grievances regarding Income Tax Returns.
Further, contact number for resolution are given as : +91-80-461-22000, 18001030025, 18004190025. Also, in the online grievances can be submitted to [email protected] and [email protected]
However, the request for physical filing could not be accepted by the Board because of the absence of a mechanism to accept the manual format. However, assurance for not imposing a penalty under Section 273B has been given, in case of genuine hardship cases.
On Jan 18, the Gujarat High Court had sought assurance, by way of an affidavit, from the Central Board Of Direct Taxes (CBDT) that they would attend to the problems of the assessees who are unable to file Tax Audit Reports and Income Tax Returns due to the technical glitches in the IT Portal.

On Jan 18, Appearing before the Court, the CBDT had submitted before the Court that physical filing of the reports can't be allowed as the same is not feasible, to which, the Court said thus:

"Ask the highest authorities to file an affidavit that if any problem crop up, then they shall be immediately attended, and if such problems are not attended, then the officer shall be personally responsible for the same. If CBDT is to adopt a very obstinate attitude, which we don't appreciate, they should keep in mind the problems being faced by the assessees There is no good reason for the CBDT to become happy because 35% of the Assessees have been able to upload their audit reports and ITRs and 65% are yet to file the same."

Read more about the case here: CBDT Says 'No' To Physical Filing Of ITR, Audit Reports; Gujarat HC Seeks Board's Assurance To Attend To Assessees' Problems

The matter was being represented by Senior Advocate Tushar Hemani with Dr.Avinash Poddar assisted by Nipun Singhvi and Vishal J Dave. Union was represented by Additional Solicitor General of India Devang Vyas and CBDT by Senior Advocate Manish Bhatt.

Case title - THE SOUTHERN GUJARAT INCOME TAX BAR ASSOCIATION, SURAT v. UNION OF INDIA & 1 other(s)
Case citation: 2022 LiveLaw (Guj) 3

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