Faceless assessment: A paradigm shift in Indian revenue audits6 min read 24 Jun 2021, 08:04 PM IST
The faceless assessment scheme is a step in the right direction to achieve ease of doing business and bringing in more transparency and certainty in tax matters. Success of this scheme is the joint responsibility of both sides.
The Indian government has embarked on a journey of adoption of technology and digitization in governance processes and citizen services over the last few years. Implementation of the nationwide goods and services tax (GST was a major milestone in this journey. On the direct tax front, the government transitioned the revenue audit (tax assessment) process from face-to-face assessment to electronic assessment and now to a complete faceless assessment. The faceless assessment scheme was launched in 2020 with the objective of promoting an efficient and effective tax administration, minimizing physical interface, increasing accountability and introduction of team-based assessments. Faceless assessment is, no doubt, a major tax reform initiative and India is one of the few countries to adopt such a system. As per the information available from public domain as of April 2021, the tax authorities had issued assessment orders in 106,734 cases and no extra taxable income was added in over 90% of faceless assessment cases.