Hyderabad: Income tax officials are unhappy with the mopup so far in this fiscal. They feel that the economic slowdown and the IT Department's strategy of going slow on the corporates, in the aftermath of the suicide of Cafe Coffee Day founder VG Siddhartha in July, have impacted the over all tax collections between April 1 and September 17.
Post-September 15, which was the last day for payment of advance tax, the total net collections stand at a little over Rs 4.46 lakh crore, up 5.2 per cent compared to the mopup of Rs 4.24 lakh crore in the previous year fro the same period. The IT officials see this as “very poor” growth.
Some key IT regions like Delhi and Bengaluru have been impacted so badly that their growth rate stood at -7.0 and -2.9 per cent, respectively.
“The overall IT collection is very poor and an increase of over 5 per cent can be attributed to the economic slowdown and is an indicator that businesses are generally not doing good. Another factor is that IT regions across the country were going slow on corporates as there was huge criticism against the department following the death of CCD founder in July. There were hardly any IT raids or searches from our side since last few months. Both these factors has ended up in poor tax collections,” top IT sources told Deccan Chronicle.
Over the last three months, even Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has been regularly reminding the IT officials not to “chase and harass” corporates.
On July 31, the CCD founder VG Siddhartha's body was fished out from Netravati river near Manguluru in Karnataka, two days after he went missing. In a letter left behind, he mentioned harassment by the income tax officials as the reason for ending his life.
According to the latest figures of the over all tax collections accessed by this newspaper, the Mumbai IT region—with corporate tax of Rs 80,496 crores and IT of Rs 51,525 crore, had total net collections to the tune of over Rs 1.37 lakh crore as against Rs 1,25 lakh crore in the previous year, registering a growth rate of 9.3 per cent.
Next in the list is Delhi, with Rs 40,415.1 crore as corporate tax, Rs 25,678.4 crore as IT. The total net collections were Rs 66,062.6 crore versus Rs 71,059.4 crore the previous year. The region recorded a growth rate of - 7.0 per cent.
Similarly, Bengaluru, collected Rs 20,142 towards corporate tax and Rs 24,909 crore as IT and the total net collections stood at Rs 45,330.2 crore against Rs 46,685 crore in the previous year. Bengaluru recorded a growth of - 2.9 per cent.
“This was highly unexpected. Though the figures before September 15 were worrying, we had hoped it would improve after payment of advance tax,” said one IT official.
Prior to September 15, the overall tax collections (till September 10) stood at Rs 3.07 lakh crore and the IT Department was hoping that the numbers would grow considerably after September 15, once the advance tax payments are made. But the latest figures have come as a shocker to the department.
In Hyderabad, the corporate tax collected was Rs 11,979.1 crore while the IT collected was Rs 12,255 crore. The net collections stood at Rs 24,376.1 crore while the figure was Rs 22,095.6 crore in the previous year. The growth rate recorded was 10.3 per cent.
Chennai, where corporate tax collected was Rs 17,775.5 crore and the IT was Rs 14,156.9 crore, the net collection was Rs 31,934.8 crore while in the previous year the figure was Rs 29,411.6 crore. The growth recorded was 8.6 per cent.
“In the months to come, we will have to re-work on the strategies to improve the numbers. The CBDT had given us an all-India target of Rs 13.8 lakh crore for the financial year 2019-20. To achieve it, we have to improve our performance,” the IT officials said, adding that when businesses run well, it reflects in the advance tax payments, which was missing this time around....