With the launch of faceless assessment scheme, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) on Thursday issued an order to debar any assessment order that did not pass through the National e-Assessment Center — the nodal agency for assigning and coordinating with assessment and review teams to implement the scheme.
However, the orders exempted assessment order in cases assigned to international tax charges, and those assigned to central charges – which are usually cases of search and seizure involving multiple jurisdiction but supervised by one official.
CBDT said that any assessment order that is not in conformity with the order will be considered as “non-est and shall be deemed to have never been passed”.
“With the launch of various e-governance initiative, the income tax department is moving towards total computerisation of its work. This has also led to a significant improvement in delivery of services and has brought greater transparency in the functioning of the tax administration,” the order said.
Additionally, in another order, CBDT said that the power of survey under the Income Tax Act would henceforth be restricted to officials of Directorates of Investigation (investigation wing) and commissionerates of TDS.
“With the launch of faceless assessment scheme, 2019, the I-T department is moving towards minimal interface with the taxpayers, aiming at a significant improvement in delivery of services and greater transparency in the working of the department,” CBDT said in its order.
It added that the survey action under section 133A of the Act is an intrusive action, and it should be carried out with utmost responsibility and accountability.