Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla informed the Lok Sabha on Friday that the Income Tax department (I-T department) seized the assets worth Rs 992.52 crore during the financial year 2017-18.
Shukla submitted a written reply to the Parliament informing that a total of 582 search and seizure operations were conducted by I-T department during the financial year 2017-18.
He also told that the assets worth Rs 1,469.62 crore were seized in the financial year 2016-17. And in the same year, 1152 search and seizure operations were conducted. The I-T department seizes unaccounted, undisclosed and unexplained assets during the search and seizure operations.
Also, on the topic of Direct tax-Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio, Shukla said in a separate reply that the ratio has improved 5.98 per cent in 2017-18 from 5.57 per cent in 2016-17 and 5.47 per cent in 2015-16. He added that the central Indirect tax-GDP ratio was at 5.43 per cent in the fiscal year 2017-18, which has improved from the 5.65 per cent in 2016-17 and 5.16 per cent in 2015-16.
He informed the Parliament that according to the Budget Estimate, the Indirect tax to GDP ratio for 2018-19 has been fixed at 5.96 per cent. The indirect tax here includes Central Goods and Services Tax (CGST), Integrated Goods and Services Tax (IGST) and compensation cess.
Shukla told that several reformative steps have been taken by the government to increase the tax-GDP ratio. One major step is the simplification of tax collection rules. Also, other measures taken include tax collection at source at one per cent on the sale of minerals such as coal, lignite and iron ore for trading purposes and one per cent tax deduction at source on the acquisition of immovables worth Rs 50 lakh or more.
The government has also introduced a new tax in the form of equalisation levy at six per cent which is imposed on e-commerce transactions. Also, a five per cent Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) on rent payment of over Rs 50,000 a month has also been introduced to improve the tax-GDP ratio of the country.
Shukla added that several crucial steps have been taken to improve revenue collection. They are the introduction of the e-way bill, simplification of measures for filing tax returns, steps to capture invoice details of transactions to match them with the credit taken and the verification of transition credit availed by taxpayers.
Lauding the Goods and Services Tax, he said that the tax base has significantly increased after the rollout of GST and also more than 1.16 crore taxpayers are now registered under the GST regime.