People with No PAN Card to Pay 20% from Tomorrow

Residents as well as non-residents who don’t have permanent account numbers (PAN) will be required to pay 20% tax from tomorrow, said media reports.

A notification issued by the Central Board of Direct Tax in January stated that tax up to 20 per cent, as against regular 2%-10%, would be deducted at source from April 1 on income accruing to people who fail to provide PAN.

The circular said that the tax would be deducted at 20 per cent or the highest prescribed rate for the category of income, whichever was higher.

“The law will also apply to all non-residents in respect of payments and remittances liable to tax deduction at source,” a Finance Ministry statement had said.

The idea behind the rule is to encourage more people to obtain PAN, a 10-digit alphanumeric tax payer identification number, and thereby become visible to tax authorities.

It maybe mentioned that the tax base of the country is a mere 3.3 crore because of massive underreporting of incomes and large-scale exemptions.

Quoting of PAN will allow income tax authorities to establish an audit trail and catch tax evaders. However, some experts feel the measure is excessive.

“This would put unnecessary burden on senior citizens who do not have a tax liability,”  Kishan Malhotra, Executive Director, KPMG, was quoted as saying by the Times of India.

(Based on internet reports)

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