New Delhi: The Government of India’s tax department’s policy making body—Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT)—on Saturday clarified that for filing of tax returns and for obtaining permanent account number (PAN), Aadhaar was compulsory, after the Supreme Court on Friday upheld the requirement introduced in Finance Act, 2017.
CBDT, the apex policy making body for direct taxes, stated that the “partial relief" granted by the apex court of non-cancellation of PAN for not linking Aadhaar with it, is available only in the case of those who do not have Aadhaar and do not wish to obtain it for the time being.
“From 1, July, 2017 onwards, every person eligible to obtain Aadhaar must quote their Aadhaar number or their Aadhaar Enrolment ID number for filing of income tax returns as well as for applications for PAN," said CBDT in a note on the “effect of the judgement.’
“However, those assessees who are not Aadhaar card holders and do not comply with the provision of Section 139AA (2) of the Income Tax Act (which prescribes linking of Aadhaar with PAN), their PAN cards will be not treated as invalid for the time being," said the statement.
The CBDT position is that if one does not have Aadhaar and does not apply for it, their PAN will not be invalidated, but the person will still need Aadhaar to file tax returns.
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The statement said quoting the apex court decision that those who have already enrolled under Aadhaar scheme would comply with the requirement of linking it with their PAN, while those who do not have the 12-digit identification number issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), are free to obtain one.
Abhishek Goenka, leader of direct tax, PricewaterhouseCoopers said that the government’s intention is to converge different identification numbers into one for better compliance. Linking of Aadhaar with PAN will help in identifying whether multiple PAN numbers are maintained by the same assessee, said Goenka.