Policy

CBEC urged to come up with ‘ingenious ways' to meet tax target

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on June 08, 2011

B.Line:Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee welcomed by CBEC Chairman SD Majumder and Sunil Mitra, Finance Secretary (Revenue) during the annual conference of Chief Commissioners and Directors General of Central Excise, Customs & Service Tax , in the Capital. on 08.06.2011. Pic :Kamal Narang

Liquidate at least 50% of indirect tax revenue arrears, says Pranab



Amid fears of moderation in economic growth this fiscal, the Finance Minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee, on Wednesday asked the CBEC to come up with “ingenious ways” for meeting the indirect tax collection target of Rs 3.92 lakh crore for 2011-12.

This target represents a 15 per cent increase over the collections achieved in the previous fiscal.

Stating that the task before the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) was “very challenging”, Mr Mukherjee told an annual conference of excise and customs officials here that “sustained and strategic” efforts would be required throughout the financial year to meet this challenge.

The Centre's indirect tax collections in 2010-11 stood at Rs 3.42 lakh crore, exceeding the revised estimate of Rs 3.34 lakh crore.

On revenue arrears, Mr Mukherjee said that this was an area of “serious concern” and urged the CBEC to devise a strategy for “realisation and liquidation” of at least 50 per cent of the “locked-up revenue” during the current fiscal. This would also provide the necessary fillip to CBEC's efforts in attaining the budgeted revenue targets for 2011-12, he said.

Currently, revenue arrears stood at about Rs 35,000 crore. It has grown consistently over the years from a little over Rs 9,000 crore in March 2005 to current levels.

GST

On the Goods and Services Tax (GST), Mr Mukherjee noted that the process will take a little time. The CBEC should continue with its preparations, he advised.

The CBEC Chairman, Mr S. Dutt Mazumder, said at the conference that the back end work was going on full swing and that the Task Force on GST has submitted an interim report on business processes relating to GST, which is being deliberated upon.

On GST-Net, the IT initiative for GST, Mr Mukherjee said that he expects by the beginning of next month feedback from the IT pilot projects initiated in 11 States with the assistance of NSDL.

“I would advise you that there must not be any let up in your preparatory work for GST,” Mr Mukherjee said.

Litigation woes

Meanwhile, the Finance Minister noted that avoidable litigation with taxpayers continues to be another area of serious concern for the department. The litigation with the taxpayers has been continuously growing over the years.

In the last five years, the number of appeals filed by the department and pendency before the Supreme Court has grown by close to 25 per cent, before the High Court by over 65 per cent , in CESTAT by over 58 per cent and, before Commissioner (appeals) by over 58 per cent.

“Such a phenomenal increase in litigation does not signify a healthy trend and is a pointer to serious administrative issues. This also requires introspection about routine filing of appeals,” Mr Mukherjee said.

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Published on June 08, 2011
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