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Will end tax harassment, taxpayers’ charter to be enshrined in law: Nirmala Sitharaman

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday announced that a taxpayers' charter will be enshrined in the statutes to avoid taxpayer harassment.

During her speech presenting the budget for the financial year 2020-21, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that a taxpayer charter will be a part of the statutes of the government, to stop tax harassment.

Emphasising that honest taxpayers will not be harassed by tax officials, the finance minister said that the government is committed to taking measures to ensure that taxpayers are free from tax harassment of any kind. Saying that tax harassment cannot be tolerated, Nirmala Sitharaman said that the wealth creators will be respected in this country.

The government believes in trusting every citizen, the aspirational youth, the hard-working women, the risk-taking entrepreneur, the ever hopeful and untiring farmer, or the wise and old senior citizen, many among them are taxpayers, the finance minister said. She said that the prime minister has laid before us the ease of living as a goal to be achieved on behalf of all citizens.

An important aspect of ease of living and ease of doing business is fairness, the efficiency of tax administration. Businesses should have the confidence that things are fair. “We wish to enshrine in the statutes a taxpayer charter through this Budget,” the finance minister said. The taxpayers charter will be going to part of our law, to build trust, she said. Tax harassment can’t be tolerated when we are talking about citizens and wealth creators.

There have been debates about building in statue criminal liability for acts that are civil in nature. Hence certain amendments for the Companies Act are proposed to correct this, the Finance Minister said. Similarly, other laws will also be examined where such provisions are present, and an attempt will be made to correct them also.

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