I-T staff protest setting up of LTUs

Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: The non-gazetted employees of the Income-Tax (I-T) Department throughout the country on Thursday walked out of their offices in protest against the Centre's move to set up large taxpayer units (LTUs).

They threatened to go on an indefinite strike over the issue by the end of March.

The employees (Group B, C & D) also demanded a revision in the pay scales of inspectors and income-tax officers (ITOs) with effect from January 1, 1996, instead of the Centre's decision to do it with effect from April 21, 2000.

According to K.K.N. Kutty, General Secretary, I-T Employees Federation, some of the other demands of the employees included the filling up of 9,000 posts in the Department and withdrawal of the changes in recruitment rules.

All the 43,000 employees under the three groups from peons to inspectors, Mr. Kutty claimed, boycotted work. As 80 per cent of the I-T returns, in terms of value, would be filed through the LTUs, Mr. Kutty charged that the move to set up such units was a design to render the Department redundant.

The LTUs are being set up in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Bangalore.