A Taxpayer Awareness cum Outreach programme titled ‘Mulaqaat’ of the officers of the Income Tax Department and the Central GST Department with the locals of Anantnag and Kupwara districts was held today.The ‘Mulaqaat’ programme was held under the supervision of Principal Commissioner of Income Tax, Srinagar, M.P Singh.In Anantnag, the programme was conducted at the Dak Bungalow, Khanabal where along with the District Magistrate, Dr. Piyush Singla, Assistant Commissioner of Income Tax, Abhishri and officers of the CGST department were present. In Kupwara, the programme was conducted at the Town Hall where along with Joint Commissioner of Income Tax, Rajiv Gubgotra and officers of the CGST department, the ADC of the District, was also present.During the programme, the interaction was held with the representatives of the local youth, dry fruit shop owners, willow bat manufacturers and other small shopkeepers & businessmen in large numbers. Feedback from the people was taken by the officers regarding taxation issues and their aspirations from the Union Budget.Mr. Mushtaf, a young trader from Anantnag, requested that awareness and educational camps be continued to be held in their district extensively to educate the public about the same. He insisted that the locals wanted to pay taxes but they needed guidance with respect to the same to encourage voluntary compliance.
Shaukat Mansoor, Secretary Trade Federation of the Kupwara district requested establishment of a dedicated ASK (Aayakar Seva Kendra) centre at Kupwara. Wasim, a local CA from Anantnag requested that the jurisdictional Income Tax office for Anantnag be located closer to the district headquarters for facilitating the taxpayers there.The President of the Municipal Council of Anantnag and Ashfaq, a businessman from Kupwara requested that extension for filing of returns be granted to the people of the valley keeping in mind the unique challenges faced by the locals here. The local traders and small shopkeepers were also informed about sections of the Income Tax Act, 1961, under which they can avail of the presumptive taxation scheme.With regard to the Union Budget, the locals gave their ideas and suggestions, based on their local issues. Increased focus on tourism, construction of mini hydro power stations, employment generation for the youth especially women, promotion of willow bats and increased access to credit facilities were the highlights from Anantnag.
In Kupwara the local youth raised concerns about the fact that since Kupwara was quite far away from Srinagar; the district needs emphasised development impetus specially in cottage industries. Faizan Qureshi, a local youth of Kupwara stressed that more vocational training institutes may be opened in faraway places with an objective to provide employment.The officers noted down the detailed points raised by the locals, collected feedback forms and promised to communicate the same to their superiors.Moreover, the District Magistrate of Anantnag also promised that a task force for youth was being formed which would identify and focus on issues faced by the local youth of Anantnag, with the assistance of panchayats.The taxpayers of the district were also educated about the technological advancements brought in both the departments and the transparency and accountability associated with the same.Principal Commissioner of Income Tax has assured that the Income Tax Department is committed to the best taxpayer services for its assessees and they are assured that all their grievances will be redressed in a transparent and efficient manner.