Moneylife Foundation Tax Forum FAQ
Frequently Asked Questions
  • What is Income-tax?

    It is a tax levied by the Government of India on the income of every person. The provisions governing the Income-tax Law are given in the Income-tax Act, 1961.

  • What is the administrative framework of Income-tax?

    The revenue functions of the Government of India are managed by the Ministry of Finance. The Finance Ministry has entrusted the task of administration of direct taxes like Income-tax, Wealth tax, etc., to the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT). The CBDT is a part of Department of Revenue in the Ministry of Finance.
    CBDT provides essential inputs for policy framing and planning of direct taxes and also administers the direct tax laws through the Income-tax Department. Thus, Income-tax Law is administrated by the Income-tax Department under the control and supervision of the CBDT.

  • What is the period for which a person's income is taken into account for the purpose of Income-tax?

    Income-tax is levied on the annual income of a person. The year under the Income-tax Law is the period starting from 1st April and ending on 31st March of next calendar year. The Income-tax Law classifies the year as (1) Previous year, and (2) Assessment year.
    The year in which income is earned is called as previous year and the year in which the income is charged to tax is called as assessment year.
    e.g., Income earned during the period of 1st April, 2013 to 31st March, 2014 is treated as income of the previous year 2013-14. Income of the previous year 2013-14 will be charged to tax in the next year, i.e., in the assessment year 2014-15.

  • Who is supposed to pay Income-tax?

    Income-tax is to be paid by every person. The term 'person' as defined under the Income-tax Act covers in its ambit natural as well as artificial persons.
    For the purpose of charging Income-tax, the term 'person' includes Individual, Hindu Undivided Families [HUFs], Association of Persons [AOPs], Body of individuals [BOIs], Firms, LLPs, Companies, Local authority and any artificial juridical person not covered under any of the above.
    Thus, from the definition of the term 'person' it can be observed that, apart from a natural person, i.e., an individual, any sort of artificial entity will also be liable to pay Income-tax.

  • How does the Government collect Income-tax?

    Taxes are collected by the Government through three means: a) voluntary payment by taxpayers into various designated Banks. For example, Advance Tax and Self Assessment Tax paid by the taxpayers, b) Taxes deducted at source [TDS] from the income of the receiver, and c) Taxes collected at source [TCS]. It is the constitutional obligation of every person earning income to compute his income and pay taxes correctly.

  • How will I know how much Income-tax I have to pay?

    The rates of Income-tax and corporate taxes are available in the Finance Act passed by the Parliament every year. You can also check your tax liability by using the free online tax calculator available at

  • From where can I take the help of any expert on Income-tax related matters?

    The rates of Income-tax and corporate taxes are available in the Finance Act passed by the Parliament every year. You can also check your tax liability by using the free online tax calculator available at

  • When do I have to pay the taxes on my income?

    Generally, the tax on income crystallizes only on completion of the previous year. However, for ease of collection and regularity of flow of funds to the Government for its various activities, the Income-tax Act has laid down the provisions for payment of taxes in advance during the year of earning itself. It is called as 'pay as you earn' concept. Taxes may also be collected on your behalf during the previous year itself through TDS and TCS mode. If at the time of filing of return you find that you have some balance tax to be paid after taking into account the credit of your advance tax, TDS & TCS, the shortfall is to be deposited as Self Assessment Tax.

  • How to deposit Self Assessment Tax or Advance tax to the credit of Government?

    Self - Assessment Tax or Advance Tax is to be deposited to the credit of Government by using the challan prescribed in this behalf, i.e., ITNS 280. The Challan can be downloaded from Tax can be paid in the designated banks through two modes, viz., physical mode, i.e., cash/cheque or e-payment mode.


Black Money Bill: What Good Is It?

The new Black Money Bill will neither stop black money generation, not bring black money back


In a candid assessment of The Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets (Imposition of Tax) Bill (Black Money Bill in common parlance), Dr Subramanian Swamy, leader of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), said that the, recently introduced Bill in the Lok Sabha is unlikely yield the desired results. “The Black Money Bill tabled in the Parliament is not sufficient to eliminate the problem. In addition, there is nothing in the Bill on bringing black money back in India,” he said. 
Instead, he explained the various strategies employed by other countries to bring back illicit wealth siphoned away from their countries. For instance, Dr Swamy said that many countries had declared wealth stashed abroad, or in tax havens, by overthrown dictators, as national wealth. “Under the United Nations Convention on Corruption, each of the countries (that holds such illicit wealth) can be directed to transfer the money back.” He suggested that India should promulgate an ordinance on this issue and, with UN support to have it enforced, we can bring black money back in two or three years.
The BJP leader said the best way forward was to take recourse to the United Nations Convention on Corruption to instruct the tax havens to cooperate. He recalled that in October 2014 he had written to prime minister Narendra Modi listing six steps through which the government could bring back black money, pegging the amount at about Rs1.2 lakh crore.
He said the Indian government does not have names of Indians holding accounts abroad illegally except in the case of two banks. “Give me appropriate power, control over the ED (enforcement directorate) and other agencies, and I will get all the black money stashed abroad in two months,” the BJP leader said, adding that many in the higher echelons of power from across the parties may not like it if this really happens. 
“Apart from bringing black money back, we need to prevent its creation. Abolishing participatory notes (P-Notes), personal income-tax (I-T) and registration charges for real estate are ways to curb creation of black money.” The total value of P-Note investments in Indian markets (equity, debt and derivatives) rose to Rs2,72,078 crore at the end of March 2015, according to SEBI data.  
With regard to some of the more draconian provisions of the Black Money Bill (such as a maximum of 10 years’ rigorous imprisonment for offenders who evade taxes in relation to foreign assets and a penalty of 300%), Dr Swamy said, “I agree that the Bill contains some harshness and its assumptive powers may be misused by revenue officials. The Bill is more like an I-T Bill and a de facto amnesty scheme. The amnesty would also be dropped and, in the end, it will be only empowerment of I-T officials.”
On preventing the generation of black money, Dr Swamy said, “Start catching big people, whose information is available with the ED and who are involved in this black money business. This will have a deterrent effect for other people and the population would become honest sooner rather than later.”
Dr Swamy, arguably India’s most fearless politician and a renowned economist, was at his best while replying to a volley of questions on black money, taxation, hawala and politics. Eminent lawyer and taxation expert, Anil Harish, asked about practical ways to bring back and prevent the creation of black money. Dr Swamy said, “…the practical way should not be to penalise the honest taxpayer. Even today, tax rates, in my opinion, are unacceptably high. If you abolish income tax, then you begin the process anew; fresh black money is going to be discouraged as a consequence.” 
Xerxes Dastur, a chartered accountant, asked about the cost of tax collection and remedy from severe procedures for filing tax. “There should be a national demand from the public—a national movement—to abolish income tax. It taxes predominantly the urban middle class and the young professional class. In rural areas, agricultural income is not taxed. Rich people anyway have chartered accountants to help them. The ordinary taxpayer is the one who goes through hell in adhering to the law. Abolition of income tax will have a salutary effect on the rate of savings and investment in the Indian economy. Britain had done so to encourage its Industrial Revolution during the period 1816-1842,” Dr Swamy said.
On black money in the realty sector, Dr Swamy said, “In the real estate sector, there are problems of stamp duty, and registration fees, which are paid by the public at a lower value. Undervaluation of property for this is a problem. All these government fees/duties should be abolished. The market should be operating freely for buying and selling. If there is a major overhaul, black money will not be generated in the real estate sector.”

Aadhaar Is a Disaster

Responding to another question, the BJP leader called Aadhaar, a numbering scheme promoted by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), a ‘disaster’. He said, “Aadhaar is a disaster. It is based on existing data systems. Software is prepared by foreign companies. Aadhaar should be scrapped. Sooner or later, it is bound to happen.” He narrated how he had spoken against Aadhaar while campaigning for BJP minister Ananth Kumar in the Bengaluru south constituency during Lok Sabha elections in 2014. Ananth Kumar was contesting against Nandan Nilekani, who pioneered Aadhaar and had just stepped down as chairman of UIDAI. “But then I found when the new government came in, they decided to renovate or bring it (Aadhaar) in new form. So I asked, Ananth Kumar, who had become a minister, that ‘you made me come and argue (against Aadhaar). Now, with what face I will go and tell people that I do not know what is going on?’ The minister said, ‘I also don’t know what is going on.’ So if a minister doesn’t know what’s going on, then don’t blame me if I don’t know what is going on,” said Dr Swamy with a laugh. “But I certainly think that Aadhaar is a disaster,” he added.  
A packed audience, comprising eminent lawyers, chartered accountants, senior consultants and citizens, responded to Dr Swamy’s forthright views with a standing ovation. 



Pranali Sharma

2 months ago

Great initiative by the government of India, Income taxpayers to link their permanent account number or PAN to the 12-digit Aadhaar number is a key step taken by the government to stop the black money.
Click here to check aadhaar status online.

Mukesh kamath

2 years ago

Aadhaar will be useful in clean india campaign. It will reduce retail corruption.

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