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Why is Taxman texting you?

Off late many Individuals have been receiving SMS from the Income Tax Department. No, the ITD doesn’t want to become your texting pal… Rather, the SMS’ dictates that their PANs have been flagged in lieu of not filing their ITR. Sure enough, many traders were baffled by it. No matter how confusing it might seem, there is an explanation and a way out of it.



This is a snippet of SMS sent out to Individuals for non-filing of ITR. If you received an SMS as well, it might be advisable to understand why you received it.



As for the individuals, many complained that their taxable income was way below the slab rates. Still, they were unable to explain why they received this SMS. Any Individual who received an SMS from the ITD, must fulfill these Conditions.


Condition 1

For F.Y 2018-19, the due date to file Original Income Tax Return was 31st July (non-audit case) and 30th September (audit case). However, a Belated Return (with the due penalty) can be filed up to 31st March 2020. There isn’t any way on Earth that Taxman will allow non-filers to fly free. Ergo, an SMS on their registered number was sent out causing confusion and chaos.


Condition 2

Apart from the explanation above, there might be another possible explanation.

You see, Taxman (more like Sherlock) is keeping close tabs on our transactions. Apparently, data of the taxpayer’s tradings transaction can be viewed on the e-compliance portal. Also, ITD has access to the information of your transactions through AIR Reports (Annual Information Return), STT Reports (Securities Transaction Tax Report) and through CIB (Central Information Branch).

AIR

Annual Information Returns (AIR) are reports submitted to the ITD by your Bank or financial service in case of any High-Value Transaction. So, if you have exercised any of these High-value Transactions, an AIR of your transactions was submitted to the ITD.

Most people might not know that there are seven AIR Codes. These Codes represent different types of transactions and activities. For instance, an individual investing in Bonds or debentures can be reported by AIR 05. similarly, if an individual invests in shares worth INR 1 Lakh or more, it is reported to the ITD under AIR 06.

STT Report

STT Report is submitted by the Exchanges to the ITD to report the information related to trading transactions of securities on which STT (Securities Transaction Tax) is paid. Following are the types of STT Reports:

Similar to AIR, there are five STT codes. These codes represent an Individual’s trading activity. For example, ITD will be intimated by STT 01 if an individual purchased equity shares from a recognized stock exchange. Even when one decides to sell their equity shares, STT 02 will be initiated to the ITD.

CIB

Apart from these two ways, the ITD also receives reports from the Central Information Branch (CIB). There are 14 criteria under CIB. If an Individual falls under any of these criteria, ITD is notified.

There are 14 CIB Reports that include several financial activities. ITD is notified when any Individual conducts any of these activities. Even, when you sell your vehicle, ITD is notified by the code CIB 94. So much so that Time Deposits of INR 1 Lakh or above are classified by code CIB 183.

So, there are several methods through which the ITD can keep track of your financial activity. And when the details in your ITR don’t match with these Reports, ITD notifies through e-mail and SMS.

P.S. If you wish to learn more about Which Transactions fall under AIR, CIB, STT Reports, feel free to check our article: Notice for Non-filing of ITR: Submit Response on E-Compliance Portal


Now what?

Okay, you received an SMS, Now what? So, turns out that there are two actions that need to be taken.

Action 1:

A no-brainer… file your ITR before 31st March. If you have already done that, you would be required to go to the Income Tax Department’s Website, and under the e-campaign section enter the response and mode of filing ITR, acknowledgments, and date.

However, in case you have not filed ITR, you should be able to justify your action with an appropriate response and logic. Quicko help traders stay tax compliant, you can check your options here.

Action 2:

If you have already filed your return, you might as well confirm the information reported on your PAN by choosing the appropriate option under the e-campaign section on the Income Tax Department’s Website. Using this information, the ITD will take the appropriate action.


So all in all, these steps should address the issue. Apart from that, as a responsible citizen, filing our Income Tax Returns on time should be a moral priority.

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