`Revenue from central excise set to go up'

TIRUCHI, FEB.26 . The Central Excise Department was looking forward to netting high revenue from service sector, said the Commissioner of Central Excise, Tiruchi, Mathew John.

Presiding over the Central Excise Day, 2004, here on Tuesday, he projected the overall revenue from the sector at Rs. 8,000 crores for this year as 59 kinds of services had been brought under the excise duty levy. The revenue generated by the department was growing at the rate of 12 to 13 per cent. Over a period of 54 years, its revenue had increased by 1,350 times. From Rs. 68 crore in 1950, it had gone up to Rs 92,000 crore.

The department, he said, had reduced to a substantial extent the difficulties in compliance and was making efforts to reap the benefits of Information Technology in the context of globalisation. The system of self-assessment introduced in the mid nineties replacing routine audit was yielding good results. The climate for voluntary compliance built mutual trust though the department was combating duty evasion with efficacy.

Executive Commissioners were involved in public interactions to dispel the department's categorisation as `Inspector Raj.'

The department was obtaining feedback from assesses and industry representatives on a constant basis to improve professional competence.

However, factors leading to such an impression were the current system of dispute resolving mechanism, which, he said, had to be improved substantially.

Explaining the significance of the Central Excise Day, Mr. Mathew said it rejuvenated the spirit of the staff to discharge their duties with integrity and judiciousness and enhanced their esteem while rendering their service in the interest of the nation.

N. Gopalaswamy, whole-time Director, Dalmia Cements, said that officers should be clear about legal aspects and leave no room for confusion due to conflicting interpretations. He urged the department to settle issues across the table before resorting to the legal remedies. Officers can win the trust and confidence of the public by being friendly even while adhering to the rules, he added.