Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) chairman Sushil Chandra has stated that only half of the PAN cards issued have been linked with Aadhaar even though the 31 March (2019) deadline to do so is only two months away, reports The New Indian Express (TNIE).
In its 26 September (2018) judgement, a five-judge bench of the Supreme Court upheld the law making it mandatory to link Permanent Account Number (PAN) with Aadhaar for filing income taxes.
“The I-T department has so far issued 42 crore PAN accounts, of which 23 crore have been linked with Aadhaar. By linking with Aadhaar, we will know whether there are any duplicate PAN or not. And there are certain duplicate PANs… If it is not linked, we may cancel the PAN also,” said Chandra at an event organised by ASSOCHAM.
The Devil Is In The Details
However, it should be noted that only 6.85 crore income tax returns were filed as per the FY20 budget speech. This represents only 16 per cent of the total number of PANs allotted. Also, many PANs have been allocated to companies for which no Aaadhaar cards are issued. On the other hand, some individuals find the linking process to be tedious some due to mismatch of names mentioned in the cards.
“There are number of people who were simply waiting for clarity on the issue before they linked PAN with Aadhaar. There are many people who have a PAN but are not required to file tax returns, such as those below the taxable threshold. Then there are also a number of transactions that require PAN to be furnished, but the people conducting them might not necessarily be filing income tax returns,” said Kuldip Kumar, Partner and Leader, Personal Tax, at PwC India, to The Hindu.