New Delhi, March 29, 2017

A crisp income-tax form for salaried individuals will be introduced from April 1, doing away with some columns to simplify the filing of returns.

Individuals with salary and interest income will have to fill fewer columns as some of these for claiming income deductions have been clubbed in the ITR1 form, called ‘Sahaj’.

In the form for assessment year 2017-18, deductions claimed under different sections of Chapter VIA have been removed and only mostly used ones have been included. “Columns that will remain include those for claiming deductions under Section 80C and Mediclaim (80D). Those individuals who want to show deductions under other heads can do so by selecting an option,” said an official. .

Currently, Sahaj has 18 different columns for claiming deductions under Section 80 of the IT Act. Under section 80C, a deduction of Rs.1.5 lakh can be claimed from total income for investments in LIC, PPF and repayment of housing loan. Section 80D provides for tax deduction from the total taxable income for the payment of medical insurance premium. This deduction is over and above the deduction under Section 80C.

“The forms would be notified by this month end as we want assessees to start filing returns from April onwards,” the official added.

The move is aimed at encouraging more people to file returns. Currently, only 6 crore out of 29 crore persons holding permanent account numbers (PAN) file income returns.

People with an income of more than Rs.50 lakh per annum and who own luxury items like yacht, aircraft or valuable jewellery will continue to disclose these expensive assets with the I-T Department in the ITRs.

The e-filing facility for ITR1 is likely to be enabled from April 1 and ITRs can be filed till the stipulated deadline of July 31.

At the time of filing the form, the taxpayer has to fill in his PAN, Aadhaar number, personal information and information on taxes paid, and TDS will be auto-filled in the form.

[The Hindu Business Line]