Net direct tax receipts rise 19.1% to Rs1.9 trillion in April-July
New Delhi: The government’s net receipts from corporate and personal income tax rose 19.1% in the April-July period to Rs1.9 trillion, faster than the growth rate estimated in February for the entire financial year, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) said on Wednesday.
One factor that helped boost the growth rate beyond the 15.7% estimated for the full financial year is the comparatively lower tax refunds made in the April-July period from a year ago.
The tax department has issued refunds of Rs61,920 crore so far this fiscal, which is 5.1% less than what was issued in the same period a year ago, the CBDT statement said.
Direct taxes received so far represent about a fifth of the Rs8.4 trillion the government estimates to collect in the full financial year.
Gross corporate tax collection in the period under review grew 7.2% while gross personal income tax receipts including securities transaction tax grew 17.5%. However, after adjusting for refunds, the net growth in corporate tax receipts is 23.2% and the same for personal income tax is 15.7%, the CBDT statement said.
Direct tax revenue for the government is likely to be robust by the end of the current fiscal considering that the tax base is showing signs of widening.
The tax department said on Tuesday that more than 28.2 million taxpayers filed their income tax returns (ITR) for the 2016-17 financial year before the extended deadline of 5 August, a 24.7% increase over the previous year.
Considering the surge in return filings within the deadline this assessment year, one can assume that the direct tax collection growth trend will also be robust, said Abhishek Goenka, leader of direct tax at PricewaterhouseCoopers Private Ltd.
If assessees who filed tax returns for 2016-17 subsequent to demonetization do not report any taxable income this financial year, they might come under the tax department’s scanner. The department is now deploying high-end data analytics to zero in on people who evade taxes. “We generally accept assessees’ declarations as true and scrutinise a very small fraction of the assessees. Those who evade taxes for many years will some day make a mistake—say, buy a car—and we get an alert,” said a tax official who asked not to be named.