April and July are two months when we have butterflies running all over our stomachs, for the following simple reasons:
- March and April have a silent testimony of the Government whiplashing the citizens with the budget. It is purely lying in the hands of Ministry of Finance whether to bless or curse the citizens with thier magic wand "Budget".
- The next issue that would confront is the tax deductions at source. If we have'nt concenterated much on the investments, the net take home would have been significantly reduced in these two months.
- The month of July would witness a new scene like filing and archiving the abovesaid melodrama with a formal official document called Form 16.
Thanks to one of my friend that he reminded me on Saturday that we can file the IT return. I was feeling lazy and thought these transactions I can have it on normal weekdays since it would make us tired for the next week. However, I did some homework in having the Form 16, Naya Saral Printouts etc ready on Sunday itself and Monday morning, I went direct to Tambaram Mudichur Income Tax office.
One salient thing I observed with respect to Tambaram office is that though it is space cramped the services were really excellent, even compared to the Aayakar Bhavan in Nungambakkam. They had hired some premises in the opposite line for having Helpline Centers. PAN verification, Document Preparation etc had separate makeshift stalls all over the little available space -- the best use of available little space.
If we carry all the documents like PAN Card, Form 16, filled up Naya Saral, the entire process of filing the tax return should not take more than half an hour. As usual like other government offices, this one was suffering due to shortage of stationery of Naya Saral. I would hence suggest the readers to take a printout of Naya Saral, PAN Card, Form 16 etc and try to avail the services of the IT office as fast as possible. No doubt, IT offices are going to be kept open on Saturdays and Sundays during July 28 to July 31. But I don't think, it is wise to wait till the 23rd hour, make undue complexities and confusions. Should you require some clarifications, you can do everything at leisure now. An early bird catches the worm right?
As for the services of third party agents, there seems to be a lot of agents mushrooming in Chennai besides bona fide chartered accountants who offer IT Tax Return services in lieu of other financial services availing in exchange. But I feel that PAN Card and other Form 16 are confidential information and hence the tax assesses should exercise extra care while transacting with such unauthorised third parties.
The tax payed and the information filed are greatly used by the Ministry of Finance and the Government of India to plan for a mighty nation and infrastructure building. Let us support the national cause by bieng transparent and loyal to the nation.
Pay Tax and Keep Your Heads High.