About 25 to 30 firms have deducted tax worth Rs.100 crore for the current fiscal, but only Rs. 20 crore had been remitted to the Income Tax department. Tax officials are pursuing tax deductors to remit the balance before the stipulated time, Gyan Chand Jain, Chief Commissioner of Income Tax (CCIT), said on Wednesday.

Talking to reporters, he said the failure on the part of tax deductors to remit Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) collected in advance, made it difficult for the department to meet its budgeted target of Rs.35,287 crore. Till date, the department has collected Rs.32,189 crore against the revised collection target of Rs.38,816 crore for Tamil Nadu and Puducherry region.

According to Mr. Jain, the Special Tahsildar (Land Acquisition), Chennai Metro Rail Ltd (CMRL), paid Rs.368 crore as compensation for acquisition of the land after deducting Rs.36.80 crore as tax. But, the TDS amount was yet to be remitted. Similarly, tax deducted by a Central government enterprise was Rs.10.57 crore and it was yet to remit Rs.5.79 crore. In another case, a sum of Rs.22.17 crore was deducted, of which Rs.10.56 crore was remitted till date.

Asked whether the number of defaults was on the rise, Mr. Jain said, “We have been conducting TDS awareness programmes in major cities and in rural areas. But, every year, we see new types of violations. First, we will ask the deductors to comply with the law. They will have to pay simple interest of one per cent per month if they remit the sum after the due date. If the explanation is not satisfactory, we will issue prosecution notices to them. Tax deductors are therefore advised to deduct tax wherever applicable and remit the same to the Government account within the stipulated time.”

Mr. Jain said March 15 was the last date for payment of the final instalment of advance tax for all categories of assessees including the salaried classes, business and corporates. Those who fail to pay advance tax and those who make short payment are liable to pay interest under the Income Tax law. Payment of tax on or after March 15, but before March 31 would also be treated as advance tax paid. However, any payment made after March 15 would attract penal interest.

To help the tax payers, Aayakar Seva Kendra (ASK) would be opened in Chennai, Madurai, Salem and Tiruchi before the month end. It would function like a single window system for various queries with specific timelines.

During the current year, the department refunded tax of Rs.4,532 crore to three lakh applicants, marking an increase of 78 per cent over the corresponding period last year and 10,000 tax refund claims are pending.