Citizen complaints spur review of deadline to link Aadhaar, PAN

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • There have been several complaints over the fact names in the two registries do not match.
  • Sources said a decision on the issue is expected soon as the govt does not want taxpayers to face difficulty filing their returns.
  • The last date for filing tax returns is July 31.

NEW DELHI: The government is looking at the possibility of providing some relief to taxpayers who have been put in a difficult spot due to the mandatory linking of one’s Aadhaar and Permanent Account Number (PAN).

Sources in the government told TOI that the tax department had received several complaints and letters from taxpayers who have expressed their inability to link the two identification numbers, with many representations coming from senior citizens.

There have been several complaints over the fact names in the two registries do not match. For instance, there are several instances of individuals using their initials while getting PAN, while the Aadhaar database carries their full name.

Several non-resident Indians have expressed concern over the way the current system has been put in place, and have urged the government for a review to comply with the regulations.

Besides, several senior citizens are not in a position to go to centres to enrol for Aadhaar.

While officers said taxpayers had been given sufficient time to link the two numbers, several concerns appeared to be genuine, prompting a review by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT).

Sources said a decision on the issue is expected soon as the government does not want taxpayers to face difficulty filing their returns. The last date for filing tax returns is July 31.

They, however, said there was so far no decision on the issue, although one of the options being considered was to allow taxpayers to send income tax returns in paper form for authentication in case they were unable to link the numbers.

 Government data showed that 25% of PAN card holders had linked it with Aadhaar card as on July 17. This number has gone up in recent days as individuals rush to meet the deadline for filing I-T returns.

Section 139AA of the I-T Act has made it mandatory to quote the Aadhaar number or the application number for I-T returns filed on or after July 1 this year. On June 9, the Supreme Court upheld this.
Those without an Aadhaar or its application number are in a spot, as taxpayers with an income of above Rs 5 lakh have to mandatorily file their I-T returns online.

The government has said linking of Aadhaar with PAN was an effective anti-evasion measure and had helped weed out bogus PAN cards.

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