CBDT launches award scheme for officers

Surabhi Mumbai | Updated on February 21, 2020 Published on February 21, 2020

Monthly and annual awards for revenue collection, audit, investigation and innovation on the cards

The income-tax department will be conferring awards every month to the best performing officers for carrying out key functions of revenue collections, audit, investigation and innovation.

Starting January this year, the Central Board of Direct Taxes has decided to award best-performing officers in every region on a monthly and annual basis.

“…in order to promote and appreciate the outstanding work of officers or officials or group of officers or officials in e-assessments for each Principal Chief Commissioner of Income Tax region, it is decided that every month commencing from January, 2020 and onwards, the best performing officers who have achieved excellence in the prime areas, namely investigation, collection, administration, audit or innovation in the organisational functioning shall be selected by a Committee of Commissioners formed in each region and their names shall be showcased and displayed,” the CBDT said in a recent missive.

Five categories

The awards will be given for five categories — Investigator of the month, Revenue collector of the month, Administrator of the month, Auditor of the month and Innovator of the month in each region.

“..the selection of “Revenue Collector of the month” may be considered immediately from the month of January, 2020 and Investigator of the month, Administrator of the month, Auditor of the month and Innovator of the month may be considered from April, 2020,” the CBDT has said.

At the end of each fiscal, the awards will also be given for each zone and region to the officers selected for each month.

Boost to efficiency

While the move is expected to boost the morale and efficiency of IT teams by recognising their hard work, the nomination criteria could send concerns among assessees.

The Investigator of the Month award includes the nomination criteria that the quantum of addition to income shown in the return should be at least ₹1 lakh or any outstanding investigation undertaken by the officer(s)/official(s) with proper drafting and marshalling of facts, as well as quality of investigation and identification of unique modus operandi or exposing organised scam or large-scale tax evasion.

Efforts taken for collecting cash from the current or arrears demand and any proactive measure resulting in higher collection are some of the nomination criteria for Revenue Collector of the month.

The quality and number of audit objections would be some of the conditions for nominating officers for Auditor of the month.

These officers would be felicitated on the Income Tax Day, in a public function organised in the region and their names and photos would be featured on a “Wall of Fame” in the Library or Archive or at any prominent place in their regions.

Eligibility criteria

The CBDT has also spelt out the procedure for selecting the officers and has said that any officer up to the rank of Principal Chief Commissioner of Income Tax (Pr CCIT) or those posted in Directorates will be eligible for the award.

Each Pr CCIT will constitute regional Committee of Commissioners for this purpose, consisting of two Principal Commissioners of Income Tax, Commissioner Income Tax (Administration and TPS) and Commissioner Income Tax (Judicial/Technical) of the region. The committee will meet between the eight and 14th of every month to consider the nominations.

For selection of the officers from the zone, the selection committee will choose officers under each category out of officers/officials of the year nominated by the regions under that zone and recommend the names by May 31 every year for their felicitation on the Income Tax Day at the national level.

The department has been handing out Certificates of Appreciation and Certificates of Meritorious Service to about 35 officers every year for exemplary work.

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Published on February 21, 2020
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