Do you have any grievance relating to Income Tax?
Authored by: Nagendra K A |
If you have any grievance relating to Income Tax, then meet the Income Tax Ombudsman at 4th Floor, ‘A’ Wing, Kendriya Sadan, Koramangala, Bangalore – 560 034. Contact Number: 080-2553 8389; Fax : 080-2553 8390
You, or your authorized representative, can bring your Income-tax related complaints to the Taxpayer-friendly Income-tax Ombudsman, for redressal. The Grievances may be :
- Delay in disposal or settlement of claims regarding :
- Issue of refunds
- Interest waiver petitions
- Giving effect to appellate orders
- Rectification of applications
- Release of seized books of accounts and assets
- Allotment of PAN / Issue of PAN Cards
- Sending of envelopes without refund vouchers, in cases of refund
- Non-adherence to the principle of ‘First Come First Served’ in sending refunds
- Non-acknowledgements of letters or documents
- Non-updating of demand and other registers
- Lack of transparency in identifying cases for scrutiny
- Non-credit of tax paid
- Non-adherence to prescribed working hours
- Rude behavior of Income-tax officials
- Any other matter where Government instructions have been contravened or not followed
Procedure to be followed:
- The complaint must be signed by the complainant or his/her authorized representative
- The complaint should clearly indicate:
- The name, address and PAN of the complainant
- The name and designation of the official who is being complained against
- The facts on which the complaint is bases – along with supporting documents
- The relief sought from the Ombudsman
- No complaint to the Ombudsman shall stand unless :
- You have made a written representation to the Income-tax authority superior to the one complained against and your grievance remains unaddressed
- The complaint is made not later than one year after you have received the reply of the department to your representation: and
- The complaint is not in respect of the same subject matter which was settled through the office of the Ombudsman in any previous proceedings
Powers of Ombudsman:
- He can receive complaints on matters indicated in clause 9 of the Guidelines
- He can consider these complaints and settle them either by agreement through conciliation and mediation or by passing an appropriate award
- He can require the Income-tax authority concerned to provide any information or furnish certified copies of relevant documents required by him
- In the event of the failure of an Income-tax authority, to furnish such information or documents, he may draw an adverse inference
- He can suggest remedial measures for redressal of grievances
- He can also report his findings to the Secretary, Department of Revenue and chairman, CBDT, New Delhi.
Duties of Ombudsman:
- Exercise powers of superintendence and control over his office
- Maintain confidentiality of information coming into his possession and not divulge the same to third parties, except with the consent of the person who furnishes such information. He may, however, divulge such information to an opposing party to the dispute in order to reasonably comply with the principles of natural justice.
- Protect the taxpayers’ rights and reduce their compliance burden.
- Identify issues that increase the burden of compliance and bring the same to the notice of the CBDT and Ministry of Finance.
- Furnish a monthly report to the Chairman, CBDT and Secretary, Department of Revenue recommending appropriate action including that required to be taken against erring officials.
- Furnish an annual review of the tax administration to the Chairman, CBDT and Secretary, Department of Revenue.
- Compile a list of awards made by him during the financial year and report the same to the Chief Commissioners concerned and Chairman, CBDT so that the same can be taken into account while writing the Annual Confidential Reports of the officials concerned.