Vice President Naidu calls for further simplifying tax system

Appreciating the government's efforts to do away with complex and tedious processes, Naidu stressed the need for intensifying the efforts toward creating a stable, user-friendly and transparent tax regime in the country.
Vice President Naidu calls for further simplifying tax system
M Venkaiah Naidu (Source: ANI)

New Delhi: Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Friday called for simplifying the tax system further to promote voluntary compliance and reduce litigation.

Appreciating the government's efforts to do away with complex and tedious processes, Naidu stressed the need for intensifying the efforts toward creating a stable, user-friendly and transparent tax regime in the country.

Addressing the Valediction Ceremony of the 74th Batch of Indian Revenue Service (Income Tax) at the National Academy of Direct Taxes (NADT) at Nagpur, the Vice President observed that technology can be a great enabler in our endeavour toward creating a transparent and taxpayer-friendly administration.

"Leveraging digital technology is crucial for financial inclusion, ease of service delivery and plugging leakages from various welfare schemes," Naidu said.

Observing that the country expects a high order of efficiency and integrity from all civil servants, the Vice President asked the officers to set a high benchmark and improve the system to make a positive difference in the lives of people.

"We are not content with the status quo. We want to convert our Swaraj into Suraj or good governance," Naidu stressed.

Recognising the important role of the Indian Revenue Service in nation-building through tax collections, Naidu wanted them to demystify the tax laws and procedures so that tax compliance becomes the norm and citizens pay taxes on time, willingly and effortlessly.

Citing an analogy from Mahabharata, the Vice President said that "a ruler should extract taxes from the people in the same way as honey bee extracts nectar from the flowers without harming the flower itself."

Terming effective tax administration as the bedrock of national development and one of the pillars of good governance, the Vice President underlined that "tax collection needs to increase but it should be done in a transparent and user-friendly way, not in an arbitrary manner."

Stressing the need to minimise the adverse impact of taxation on taxpayers, Naidu said, "if taxpayers continue to grow in their respective productive activities, both the national GDP and the revenue collections will continue to grow."

Referring to several tax reforms in recent years such as the focus on litigation management to avoid repetitive appeals, a faceless regime and the adoption of the Taxpayers' Charter, the Vice President complimented CBDT for ushering in these far-reaching policy measures.

"I firmly believe that interaction between taxpayers and taxmen should be characterized by a spirit of trust, transparency and mutual respect."

Naidu called taxes not just a source of revenue for the government but also an effective instrument for achieving desired socio-economic objectives.

Referring to the Prime Minister's vision for India at 100, he appealed to everyone to work for making India a developed, prosperous and happy society in the coming years.

Exhorting the young officers to not get overwhelmed by the challenges and difficulties faced in the discharge of their duties, Naidu wanted them to be adept at seeking solutions through consultation and learning from best practices across the world. "You must be receptive to new ideas and willing to listen and absorb," he stressed.

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