Tax cases’ reopening window cut to 3 years; no I-T filing for sr. citizens

Pre-filled income tax returns with details on capital gains from listed securities, dividend income and interest income from banks and post offices would be available soon, the Finance Minister said

Representational photo: iStock

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday (February 1) reduced the time limit for reopening of income tax assessment cases to three years from six years, while for serious tax fraud cases where concealment of income is ₹50 lakh or more it would be 10 years.

She also announced that senior citizens above 75 years of age who are dependent on pension and interest income will be exempted from filing tax returns. Banks paying the interest would deduct the tax on their behalf.

“We shall reduce the compliance burden on our senior citizens who are 75 years of age & above – for senior citizens who only have pension and interest income, I propose exemption from filing their Income Tax return,” Sitharaman said.

She said to end the uncertainty in the minds of taxpayers over reopening of assessment cases, the time limit for a reduction in limit for reopening to assessment to three years from six years earlier.

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“In serious tax evasion cases as well, only where ₹50 lakh or more has been concealed, the assessment can be reopened up to 10 years and that too after the consent of principal chief commissioner,” Sitharaman said.

Sitharaman said the tax department will notify rules to remove hardships of double taxation faced by of Non-Resident Indians (NRIs).

Also, pre-filled income tax returns with details on capital gains from listed securities, dividend income and interest income from banks and post offices would be available soon, she said.

A dispute resolution committee would be set up for small taxpayers with taxable income up to ₹50 lakh. She said 1.10 lakh taxpayers have availed the Direct Tax Vivad Se Vishwas scheme to resolve tax disputes. The Budget also proposed to start faceless Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT).

The finance minister also announced a relief of ₹1.5 lakh for home loans for affordable. The period of the scheme launched in the July 2019 Budget was extended till March 2021.

Sitharaman also announced additional tax relief on home loans till March 31, 2022.

(With inputs from agencies)

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