The Finance Ministry has expanded the scope of direct tax task force to facilitate faceless tax assessment and verification to prevent corruption, harassment and speed up processing.
“It has been decided to further expand the terms of reference of the direct tax task force to include faceless and acronymised verification scrutiny and assessment, the mechanism for system-based cross-verification of financial transactions, reduction in litigation and expeditious disposals of appeal before the tribunal, courts, reduction in compliance burden by simplification of procedure and sharing of information between customs, GST, CBDT and Financial Intelligence Unit”, an office order of the finance ministry said.
In view of the expansion of ToR, that includes sharing of data between agencies , the government has named Rtiwik Pandey, joint secretary (revenues) in the Direct Tax Task Force. The order also stated that the Chief Economic Advisor will now replace the ex-CEA Arvind Subramanian in the task force, the order said.
The task force was formed in 2018 to study and suitably accommodate the changing scenario in the practice tax legislation prevalent globally. Faceless assessment or scrutiny would mean that a taxpayer would not have to physically interact with a tax officer. Besides, an assessing officer would not know the taxpayer whose records he examines.