The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), last day issued an advisory for conducting E-Assessment proceedings.
The circular mandated that except for search-related assessments, proceedings in other pending scrutiny assessment cases shall be conducted only through the ‘E-Proceeding’ functionality in ITBA/E-filing. However, in cases where the concerned assessee objects to conduct of assessment proceedings electronically through the ‘E-Proceeding’ facility, such cases, for the time-being, may be kept on hold.
“Further, considering the situation that some of the stations have limited bandwidth, being VSAT stations and stations with limited capacity where bandwidth is in the process of being upgraded, it has been decided that till 31.03.2018, such stations, in accordance with target stipulated in Central Action Plan for the financial year 2017-18, may undertake and complete only ten percent scrutiny cases (which are getting barred by limitation on 31.12.2018) having the potential to effect recovery during the current year itself. The list of such stations shall be specified by the Pr. DGIT(Systems),” the circular said.
Accordingly, at these stations, till 31.03.2018, the assessment proceedings in cases to be completed as per Central Action Plan target, may be conducted manually if e-assessment is not possible.
Some of the important procedural aspects while conducting assessment proceedings through ‘E-Proceeding’ are as under:
For inquiries before assessment in terms of section 142(1)(ii) of the Act, notice shall be issued electronically and delivered upon the assessee in his ‘E-Filing’ account. While filing the response electronically in compliance with the notice under section 142(1)(ii) of the Act, the concerned assessee shall verify it in the manner prescribed under Rule 14 of Income Tax Rules, 1962.
All departmental orders/communications /notices being issued to the assessee through the ‘e-Proceeding’ facility are to be signed digitally by the Assessing Officer.
It said that Online submissions may be filed until the office hours on the date stipulated for compliance. The facility will be automatically closed seven days before the time barring date. The same can be re-opened if the AO permits.
In certain circumstances such as where the Officer wants to verify the original books of accounts, for cross-examination of witnesses, when assessee requests personal hearing etc., the Assessing Officer can follow the offline proceedings.
The circular further mandated that when an assessment is done through e-proceedings, case records and note sheets must be prepared and maintained electronically.To Read the full text of the Instructions CLICK HERE