The finance ministry on Tuesday defended the guidelines issued by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) to field officers working from home, after tax officer and staff associations described the directives laid out therein as tactics to pressurise assessees to cough up dues.
The Income-Tax department had asked field formations to contact taxpayers over phone or email to follow up on pending collections.
Finance ministry sources said describing the directives as coercive tactics “is nothing but just an imagination.”
“The directives of CBDT are given to the officers to be and to act as facilitators to taxpayers and to help them arrange their I-T related solutions through phone calls and/or other online methods. However, some quarters have mistakenly portrayed the directives of the CBDT as if directing its field officers to use coercion for collection of taxes in this time of adversity,” one of the sources said.
The sources clarified that during the ongoing nationwide lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic, all I-T officers including field officers, staff have been given guidelines to work from home by CBDT and are advised to make daily reports to