Organisations deducting TDS are required to submit the data to the Tax Information Network on the NSDL site on the basis of which taxpayers are supposed to file returns
Taxpayers have been hampered in filing income-tax returns, due to an unexplained delay in updating of TDS data on the Tax Information Network (TIN) maintained on the web site of the National Securities Depository (NSDL).
From the information available it seems that this has particularly affected senior citizens who have subscribed to the postal Senior Citizen Scheme. But there are other complaints which suggest that people who have invested in various other financial products have also been inconvenienced.
According to the law, an individual/organisation that undertakes TDS (tax deducted at source) must compulsorily file the return of tax with the income-tax department on a quarterly basis.
These returns are given to the NSDL, who is the custodian of this data. NSDL digitises the information and creates a statement called 26AS, which can be accessed by taxpayers. Assessees can then check the TDS on TIN.
"I have a savings account with the State Bank of India (SBI) and also a fixed deposit account in SBI's Bagmari branch in Kolkata. I got a TDS certificate, but to date the TDS (is) not reflected on the NSDL site. It's not only my problem, (but) many of my friends also face same problem," reads one complaint on www.complaintsboard.com.
According to the I-T department, it is mandatory for organisations that deduct tax to provide consolidated TDS information to those whose tax has been deducted. One way taxpayers can get this information is from the NSDL web site.
But the unavailability of data on the web site is causing unnecessary hardship for taxpayers filing returns through the actual submission of forms or by e-filling.
For those who choose e-filling, the data must match with what is on TIN as the income-tax department will cross-check the data submitted with the information available on the web site. Any discrepancy will result in the taxpayer being denied a possible refund.
There is a similar problem for those filling returns through physical submission of forms, for currently, the income-tax department does not ask for supporting documents, such as Form16 and Form16A (TDS certificates) and will verify the data on TIN.
Strangely, the income-tax department advises tax assessees to file their returns only after checking the data on TIN, when the data itself is either incorrect or not there at all.
Responding to a message from Moneylife seeking an explanation in the matter, NSDL said, "TDS returns are submitted/uploaded to the ITD's (income-tax department) web site by the respective deductors (and in the case of Post Office savings, by the Department of Posts) and not by NSDL."