The income tax department proposed to issue nil or lower withholding tax certificates electronically as it looks to lower human interface between the tax payer and the tax department. “In order to rationalize and make the process of issuance of certificate for no deduction of tax, deduction or collection of tax at lower rate, the existing Form 13 and relevant income tax rules are required to be amended. This is vital for minimizing the human interface and reducing the compliance burden on the applicant,” said the statement.
The step is part of the income tax department’s efforts to move all the processes to an online interface. Besides income tax return filing, it has also started e-assessment. “The notification is yet another attempt of the government to simplify and streamline the process for obtaining reduced tax withholding orders from the revenue. By seeking to provide it a statutory backing, it is moving along the lines of e-assessment.