The Supreme Court has ruled that it would be mandatory for those with Aadhaar to link the unique ID with PAN for filing income tax returns
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday ruled that it would be mandatory for Aadhaar holders to link Aadhaar with their permanent account number (PAN) for filing income tax returns (ITRs). The Supreme Court also said that an assessee who does not possess Aadhaar will not face criminal consequences for not linking PAN with Aadhaar. The Finance Act 2017 has also made it mandatory to quote your Aadhaar number while filing your income tax return with effect from 1 July 2017. However, many were finding it difficult to link Aadhaar with PAN, due to mismatching details on these two documents. Here is how you can do it:
Link your Aadhaar
To link your Aadhaar with PAN, just go to www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in and click on the tab “Link Aadhaar" on the left-hand side of the website. First, fill out your PAN and Aadhaar number, then enter your name exactly as mentioned in Aadhaar and then submit it. After verification of details from the Unique Identification Authority of India (Uidai), the linking will be confirmed.
If there is any minor mismatch in your Aadhaar name, a one-time password (OTP) will be sent to your Aadhaar-registered mobile number. Make sure that the date of birth and gender in PAN and Aadhaar are exactly the same. There is no need to even log in or be registered on the e-filing website.
If you are already registered on the e-filing website, you can link your Aadhaar after logging into the e-filing website. Just click on the Aadhaar linking option under profile settings. The details as per PAN will be pre-populated and you only need to enter your Aadhaar number and name exactly as mentioned in Aadhaar. Once you link your Aadhaar with PAN, you will be able to e-verify your ITR using the OTP sent to your mobile. If your Aadhaar name is completely different from your name in PAN, then the linking will fail and the taxpayer will be prompted to change the name in either Aadhaar or PAN database.
The Finance Act 2017 makes it mandatory for individual taxpayers to quote their Aadhaar number while filing ITRs. The new rule will come into effect from 1 July 2017. Those who do not have an Aadhaar number can apply for one and use the enrolment number instead. However, it should be noted that the new rule also specifies certain categories of people who can file ITRs without an Aadhaar number.
The rule of mandatorily quoting Aadhaar number only applies to those who are eligible under the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act 2016 to procure an Aadhaar number. As per the Aadhaar Act, only a resident individual is entitled to obtain it. Residents, as per the said act, are individuals who have resided in India for a period or periods amounting to 182 days or more in the 12 months immediately before the date of application for Aadhaar enrolment.
Accordingly, the requirement to quote Aadhaar, as per section 139AA of the Income-Tax Act, shall not apply to individuals who are not residents, as defined in the act. Apart from non-residents, individual asessees residing in the states of Assam, Jammu and Kashmir and Meghalaya are also exempt from quoting Aadhaar.
Besides that, very senior citizens (individuals who were 80 years or older at any time during the previous year) are also not required to mandatorily mention the Aadhaar number in their ITRs.
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