Taxes are the Governments' way of earning an income which can then be used for various projects that the Governments need to indulge in to help boost the economy of the country or its people. Taxation is important to society because government use the tax revenues to fund projects related to health care systems, education systems, public transports etc. Also, the money collected can also be used to give employment benefits, pensions and other matters that can benefit the society as a whole. Without tax, the Government would not be able to fund the essential projects and services that people need.

Tax laws consist of a body of rules of public law that affects the activities and reciprocal interests of a political community and the members composing it as distinguished from relationships between individuals in the sphere of private law. It can be divided into substantial tax law, which is a body of the legal provisions giving rise to the charging of a tax; and procedural tax law, which consists of the rules laid down in the law as to assessment and enforcement procedure, coercive measures, administrative and judicial appeals and other similar matters.

The subject, important enough, at any time, is of particular significance now, since Indian economy, being plan-conscious and plan-directed, is in a transitionary stage, when efforts are being channelled towards the rapid economic development of the country.

Tax reform is one of the pressing Issues currently engaging the attention of the Public and the Government. Tax is not only a prolific revenue-yielder but exerts a major impact on the economic and social life of the people.

"Oliver Wendell Holmes once said: 'I like to pay taxes. With them I buy civilisation."

Assuming a certain level of revenue that needs to be raised, which depends on the broader economic and fiscal policies of the country concerned, there are a number of broad tax policy considerations that have traditionally guided the development of taxation systems. 'Fhese include neutrality, efficiency, certainty and simplicity, effectiveness and fairness, as well as flexibility. The imposition of tax leads to diversion of resources from the taxed to the non-taxed sectors. The revenue is allocated on various productive' sectors in the country with a view to increase the overall growth of the country. Tax revenues may be used to encourage development activities in the less developed areas of the country where normal investors are not willing to invest.

In a context, where many governments have to cope with less revenue, increasing expenditures and resulting fiscal constraints, raising revenue remains the most important function of taxes, which serve as the primary means for financing public goods such as maintenance of law and order and public infrastructure.

As Stated by Holly Sklar

"Taxes are how we pool our money for public health and safety, infrastructure, research and services – from the development of vaccines and the internet to public schools and universities, transportation, courts, police, parks and safe drinking water."

Taxation follows the principle of equity. The direct taxes are progressive in nature. Also certain indirect taxes, such as taxes on luxury goods are also progressive in nature. This means the such class has to bear the higher incidence of taxes, whereas, the lower income group is exempted from tax (direct taxes). Thus, taxation helps to reduce inequalities of income and wealth.

In modern times, the aim of public finance is not merely to raise sufficient financial resources for meeting administrative expense, for maintenance of law and order and to protect the country from foreign aggression. Now, the main object is to ensure the social welfare. The increase in the collection of tax increases the Government revenue. It is safer for the Government to avoid borrowings by increasing tax revenue. Taxation generates social welfare.

A part of the tax revenue is utilised for social development activities, such as health, family welfare etc., which also improve social welfare as well as social order in the society.

The taxes that we pay are what enable the lesser privileged many to get a good education and healthcare that they cannot afford themselves. In fact, the Government is able to work out plans of free primary education or free high school and college education for the under privileged only because of the income that it gains from taxpayers.

An important merit of taxation is that it is not only a good instrument of resource mobilisation for development but it also cuts down consumption of goods and thereby helps in checking inflation. Whereas direct taxes on income, profits and wealth reduce the disposable incomes of the people and thereby tend to reduce aggregate demand in the economy, indirect taxes directly discourages the consumption of the goods on which they are levied by raising their prices.

Taxation policy should be used to prevent the potential economic surplus from being wasted inconspicuous consumption and unproductive investment. It may be noted that this potential economic surplus is not a given amount but it increases in the very process of economic development.

It is worth mentioning that in a mixed economy such as ours, there is a need to raise not only the public savings and investment but also to promote private savings and investment so that the overall rate of saving and investment in the economy is stepped up. This implies that taxation measures should not impair incentives to save and invest of the people. Therefore, a developing economy encounters a crucial dilemma in augmenting larger resources for public investment on the one hand and to promote private savings and investment on the other.

Role of professionals

The tax profession is a solemn and serious occupation. It is a noble calling and all those who belong to it are its honourable members. Although the entry to the profession can be made merely by acquiring the qualification of tax competence, the honour as a professional has to be maintained by its members by their exemplary conduct both in and outside the Court.

Practice in the field of taxation is considered as a traditional field where members of the legal and accounting profession have made a very useful contribution. Lawyers and charted accountants, with their expertise in the field of law and accounting, have a distinct advantage in tax practice.

Some of the professionals who hold dual qualifications as an advocate and as a Chartered Accountant and who are engaged in the tax practice find their accounting background to be very useful in resolving many complicated legal issues in day-to-day practice. Apart from direct taxation, many professionals have now specialised in the filed of indirect taxation such as sales tax, excise duty, custom duty etc.

What is necessary is to create a public Image that the members of the profession are competent, that they are keeping public interest above self interest, that the members are honest and that the erring members are awarded due punishment expeditiously. This is possible only if each member supports the effort of the professional body. Legislative support may not be available for all efforts. This has to be supplemented by self regulatory measures. It is in the field of self regulatory measures that support of the members is more needed for enhancing the public image of the profession.

Pendency of tax matters before courts and methods for reduction of litigation

It is common knowledge that hundreds of thousands of cases by way of Second Appeals before Tribunal, writ petitions, applications and references before the High Courts and Special Leave Petitions before the Supreme Court relating to taxes, are pending for disposal. The pendency is increasing day-by-day because the disposal during. any period always lags behind the additions during such period. It is also noticed that while the ratio of cases as filed by the assessee and the department before tribunal is nearly equal, the same IS greatly disproportionate in the case of the matters pending before the High courts and the Supreme Court.

This attitudinal background has to be kept in mind to resolve the problems of pendency.

• As a first step, it will be necessary to drastically curtail indiscriminate filing of the applications and references by the department since the pendency on account of such applications and references constitute more than 90% of the total pendency before Courts.

• Much of litigations arise because of myriad exemption and deductions. If these are given a go-by and instead very low rates of taxes in direct taxation statutes introduced, there may hardly arise any controversy between the revenue and taxpayers.

• Lastly, legal professionals also owe responsibility to the taxpayers' community and therefore must extend helping hand for the reduction of litigation and checking its mushrooming tendency.

Moreover, in matters of taxation, like in the administration of the law, it is not enough that justice should be done-it must also be seen to be done. If owing to defects in the tax law or in their administration, highly progressive taxes on wealth or income have no visible effect on the prevailing economic inequalities or in the standards of living of the rich, the mere enactment of advanced tax legislation will prove fruitless.

In a way, there must be equity in a taxation system and an element of redistribution of resources between high and low income people as well as similar tax burden for taxpayers with similar means. Taxation must impact neutrally on various taxpayer groups and economic sectors, and commercial decision making must not get distorted by the tax considerations. Simultaneously, the system should have nexus between the revenue proposed to be raised and the public expenditure needs. A good tax system must always pave the way for simplicity and transparency in the system. Taxpayers must be able to clearly understand the nature and extent of their obligation and consequences of non-compliance and they must also know how and when they are paying tax. Similarly, the tax scheme should be so framed that there would be minimal incentive and potential for avoidance of taxation.

So, I would like to say that we all should strive together to achieve the main object of tax laws and Constitution which could help in the development of nation in a better way. I conclude with an earnest hope that members of this Association will rise to the occasion and meet the challenges of new millennium with dynamism and enthusiasm.

I wish the Association every Success.

Jai Hind

[Source : Speech delivered at Two Day National Tax Conference held at Jamshedpur on 20th August, 2016]

Taxation is the process by which the Government collects money from people to use for public purposes.

Tax es are generally an involuntary fee levied on individuals or corporations that is enforced by a Government entity, whether local, regional or national in order to finance Government activities.

Purpose of taxation

Taxes are mainly used to finance the expenses incurred by Government to manage an economy. These expenses include: health care, education, transportation and operating Government business entities etc. Taxation is also used by Government for several other purposes such as—

a. Expenses related to building and technology infrastructure.

b. To reduce pollution by taxing offending firms.

c. To discourage unhealthy lifestyle e.g, a tax on cigarettes, other tobacco products, liquor etc.

d. To protect local and infant industries by taxing imports.

e. To achieve greater equality of wealth and income. Revenue from taxation is used to help the very poor e.g. providing food stamps.

f. To improve the balance of payments (BOP) by increasing the duties charged on imported goods.

g. To control spending in an economy thus reduce inflation

h. Prevent Concentration of Wealth in a few hands–Tax is imposed on persons according to their income level.

Importance of taxation

" … but in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes."

– Benjamin Franklin

Taxation is important to society because the Government use the tax collected to fund projects related to health care systems, education systems, and public transports. Also, the money collected can also be used to give unemployment benefits, pensions, and other matters that can benefit the society as a whole. Without tax, the Government would not be able to fund the essential projects and services that people need. The Government allocates the money collected from the taxpayers to different areas of the country. For example: Some areas of our country are rich in natural resources (like minerals, fuels etc) that if utilised properly are beneficial for the development of nation and its economy. The Government needs to allocate part of the tax money towards development of such areas. Such allocation of finances generated by taxes by the Government not only helps the nation's economic growth but also helps the local habitants of such places by raising their standards of living (which is consequentially positively affected by the development programmes undertaken by the Government). Similarly, expenses made by the Government on maintenance of historic monuments, archaeological sites etc. not only improves the standards of such places but also helps in generating more revenues using tourism as a tool.

Moreover, another tax benefit on society is it discourages certain undesirable activities such as; liquor, tobacco and gambling. On such activities the Government imposes excise tax, discouraging individuals from selling such commodities.

Economic growth and taxation

Economic growth is the basis of increased prosperity. Growth comes from the accumulation of capital and from innovations which lead to technical progress. Accumulation and innovation raise the productivity of inputs into production and increase the potential level of output. The rate of growth can be affected by policy through the effect that taxation has upon economic decisions. An increase in taxation reduces the returns to investment (in both physical and human capital) and Research and Development (R&D). Lower returns mean less accumulation and innovation and hence a lower rate of growth. This is the negative aspect of taxation. Taxation also has a positive aspect. Some public expenditure can enhance productivity, such as the provision of infrastructure, public education, and health care. Taxation provides the means to finance these expenditures and indirectly can contribute to an increase in the growth rate. Taxation can have both a negative and a positive effect on growth. The negative effect arises from the distortions to choice and the disincentive effects. The positive effect arises indirectly through the expenditures financed by taxation.

The classical view of economics is that the only objective of taxation is to raise Government revenue. But with the changes in circumstances and ideologies, the aim of taxes has also been changed. These days apart from the object of raising the public revenue, taxes is levied to affect consumption, production and distribution with a view to ensuring the social welfare through the economic development of a country. For economic development of a country, tax can be used as an important tool in the following manner:

1. Optimum allocation of available resources

Taxation is the most important source of public revenue. The imposition of tax leads to diversion of resources from the taxed to the non-taxed sector. The revenue is allocated on various productive sectors in the country with a view to increasing the overall growth of the country. Tax revenues may be used to encourage development activities in the less developed areas of the country where normal investors are not willing to invest.

2. Raising Government revenue

In modern times, the aim of public finance is not merely to raise sufficient financial resources for meeting administrative expense, for maintenance of law and order and to protect the country from foreign aggression but to ensure the social welfare. The increase in the collection of tax increases the government revenue. It is safer for the government to avoid borrowings by increasing tax revenue.

3. Encouraging savings and investment

Since developing countries has mixed economy, care has also to be taken to promote capital formation and investment both in the private and public sectors. Taxation policy is to be directed to raising the ratio of savings to national income.

4. Reduction of inequalities in income and wealth

Through reducing inequalities in income and wealth by using an efficient tax system, Government can encourage people to save and invest in productive sectors.

5. Acceleration of economic growth

Tax policy may be used to handle critical economic situation like depression and inflation. In depression, tax is set to increase the consumption and reduce the savings to increase the aggregate demand and vice versa. Thus the tax policy may be used to strengthen incentives to savings and investment.

6. Price stability

In underdeveloped countries, there is another role to maintain price stability to ensure growth with stability which can be handled by a smart tax policy.

7. Control mechanism

Tax policy is also used as a control mechanism to check inflation, consumption of liquor and luxury goods and to protect the local poor industries from the uneven competition. Taxation is the only effective weapon by which private consumption can be curbed and transfer of resources to the State. Thus, the economy can ensure sustainable development.

Therefore, it can be said that the economic development of a country depends on various reasons one of them are on the presence of an effective and efficient taxation policy.

Tax revolution: tax reforms

The first comprehensive attempt at reforming the tax system was by the
Tax Reform Committee in 1953
. This provided the backdrop for the generation of resources for the Second Five-Year Plan (1956-60), and was required to fulfil a variety of objectives such as raising the level of savings and investment, effecting resource transfer from the private to the public sector and achieving a desired state of redistribution. Since then, there have been a number of attempts, most of them partial, to remedy various aspects of the tax system. The expenditure tax levied on the recommendation of the
Kaldor Committee in 1957-58 had to be withdrawn after three years as it did not generate the expected revenues. The attempt to achieve the desired state of redistribution caused the policy makers to design the income tax system with confiscatory marginal rates. The consequent moral hazard problems led the Direct Taxes Enquiry Committee in 1971 to recommend a significant reduction in marginal tax rates. On the indirect taxes side, a major simplification exercise was attempted by the
Indirect Taxes Enquiry Committee in 1972
. At the State and local level, there were a number of tax reform committees in different states that went into the issue of rationalization and simplification of the tax system. The motivation for almost all these committees was to raise more revenues to finance ever-increasing public consumption and investment requirements.

The Tax Reforms Commiitee 1991 (TRC)
laid out a framework and a roadmap for the reform of direct and indirect taxes as a part of the structural reform process. The paradigm shift in tax reforms adopted by the TRC was in keeping with the best practice approach of broadening the base, lowering marginal tax rates, reducing rate differentiation, simplifying the tax structure, and adopting measures to make the administration and enforcement more effective.

The important proposals put forward by the TRC included reduction in the rates of all major taxes, i.e., customs, individual, and corporate income and excise taxes to reasonable levels, maintain progressivity but not such as to induce evasion. The TRC recommended a number of measures to broaden the base of all the taxes by minimising exemptions and concessions, drastic simplification of laws and procedures, building a proper information system and computerisation of tax returns, and revamping and modernisation of administrative and enforcement machinery.

It also recommended that the taxes on domestic production should be fully converted into a value added tax, and it should be extended to the wholesale level, in agreement with the States, with additional revenues beyond post-manufacturing stage passed on to the State Governments. The tax reforms witnessed thereafter sought to follow the directions spelt out in this report.

While the TRC laid down the analytical foundations for the reform of the tax system in a liberalised environment, subsequent reports extended the roadmap for reforms to meet the demands of the emerging economic environment in the new millennium.

India's biggest indirect tax reform has finally arrived–the Goods and Service Tax (GST)

From its first official mention in 2009 when a discussion paper was introduced by the previous United Progressive Alliance Government to the point when the current Government tabled the Constitutional Amendment Bill in the Parliament, building consensus on the GST hasn't been easy, Its current status is that it has been passed by both the Houses, of Parliament and is now being ratified by the State Assemblies gradually.

Why does India need the GST?

The GST is being introduced not only to get rid of the current patchwork of indirect taxes that are partial and suffer from infirmities, mainly exemptions and multiple rates, but also to improve tax compliances.

The spread of GST in different countries has been one of the most important developments in taxation over the last six decades. Owing to its capacity to raise revenue in the most transparent and neutral manner, more than 150 countries have adopted the GST. With the increase of international trade in services, the GST has become a preferred global standard. All OECD countries, except the US, follow this taxation structure.

What is GST?

It has been long pending issue to streamline all the different types of indirect taxes and implement a "single taxation" system. This system is called as GST (GST is the abbreviated form of Goods & Services Tax). The main expectation from this system is to abolish all indirect taxes and only GST would be levied. As the name suggests, the GST will be levied both on Goods and Services.

GST was first introduced during 2007-08 budget session. On 17th December 2014. It is defined as any tax on the supply of goods or services that will subsume CENV AT, service tax, Central Excise duty, additional excise duties, excise duties levied under the Medicinal and Toilet Preparations (Excise Duties) Act, 1955, service tax, additional customs duty (countervailing duty or CVD), special additional duty of customs (SAD), central surcharges and cesses, State VAT, State Sales Tax, entertainment tax not levied by local bodies, luxury tax, taxes on lottery, betting, and gambling, tax on advertisements, State cesses and surcharges related to supply of goods and services and entry tax not levied by local bodies.

The primary reason for introducing the Bill is to pave the way for the Centre to tax sale of goods and the States to tax provision of services. The Bill further proposes that the Central Government will have the exclusive power to levy GST on imports and interstate trade.

The bill has also recognised the need to have a GST council. The Union Finance Minister, the union minister of State in charge of revenue or finance, and the minister in charge of Finance or Taxation or any other Minister nominated by each State Government would constitute the council to ensure that both the Centre and the States are on equal footings.

In addition, the Bill proposes to set up a Dispute Settlement Authority that would look into disputes between the States and the Centre. Appeals from the authority would directly lie with the Supreme Court.

How is GST applied?

GST is a consumption based tax/levy. It is based on the "Destination principle." GST is applied on goods and services at the place where final/actual consumption happens. GST is collected on value-added goods and services at each stage of sale or purchase in the supply chain. GST paid on the procurement of goods and services can be set off against that payable on the supply of goods or services. The manufacturer or wholesaler or retailer will pay the applicable GST rate but will claim back through tax credit mechanism.

But being the last person in the supply chain, the end consumer has to bear this tax and so, in many respects, GST is like a last-point retail tax. GST is going to be collected at point of Sale.

The GST is an indirect tax which means that the tax is passed on till the last stage wherein it is the customer of the goods and services who bears the tax. This is the case even today for all indirect taxes but the difference under the GST is that with streamlining of the multiple taxes the final cost to the customer will corne out to be lower on the elimination of double charging in the system.

Benefits of CST Bill implementation

• The tax structure will be made lean and simple

• The entire Indian market will be a unified market which may translate into lower business costs. It can facilitate seamless movement of goods across states and reduce the transaction costs of businesses.

• It is good for export oriented businesses. Because it is not applied for goods/services which are exported out of India.

• In the long run, the lower "tax burden could translate into lower prices on goods for consumers.

• The suppliers, manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers are able to recover GST incurred on input costs as tax credits. This reduces the cost of doing business, thus enabling fairer prices for consumers.

• It can bring more transparency and better compliance.

• Number of departments (tax departments) will reduce which in turn may lead to less corruption.

• More business entities will come under the tax system thus widening the tax base. This may lead to better and more tax revenue collections.

• Companies which are under unorganised sector will come under tax regime.

Role of tax professionals

Throughout the world, Tax Professionals including Gaffed Accountants and lawyers who practice majorly in the field of tax–with their technical expertise and professional and ethical training-play a key role in assisting client and employer taxpayers regarding tax obligations. At one extreme, it is clear that tax evasion–which is illegal–should be condemned by all parties and no professional accountant should ever be associated with it. At the other, leveraging tax incentives in the way they are intended by Governments is certainly appropriate. Between the two extremes lies the complex question of "tax avoidance", which is by definition legal. This poses a difficult dilemma for taxpayers and, thus, for the accountancy profession.

The tax professionals

• Help employers and clients understand their fiscal and regulatory obligations in relation to taxation and advise them on how to comply;

• Ensure that their employers and clients understand the options available to them and assist them to be as tax-competitive as possible (thus creating economic wealth and employment), but should also ensure that they understand the consequences of each option (including potential reputational consequences);

• Are obliged to comply with strict ethical principles (e.g., the international
Code of Ethics or the codes of national professional and regulatory organisations), and are guided by the fundamental principles of integrity and professional behaviour; and

• Play an important role in combating tax evasion. For example, accountants in public practice help clients comply with their legal obligations. If a client is unwilling, an accountant considers options, such as resigning from the account; in some circumstances, accountants may have a reporting obligation to revenue or regulatory authorities.

Clearly, accountants play an important role-in effective tax systems, employer and client education, business advisory, ethics, and more.

[Source: Speech delivered at the 6th Five Years
Law Course Competition on 3rd September, 2016 at Jaipur]

My Dear brothers and sisters in the AIFTP family.

Well you all know that the entire tax practitioner fraternity is in the grip of fear on account of one of the major taxation reforms in our country that would commence with the advent of the Goods Service Tax Regime. More than 50% of the State Legislatures have already ratified the Constitutional Amendment Bill as passed by the Parliament and the Parliament Act having also received the assent of the President of India became law. Recently the Government also issued notification notifying the date as 12-9-2016 to constitute the GST Council to start the work in the direction of introducing the GST. Subsequently on 16-9-2016 another notification was issued giving effect to most of the provisions of the 101st Constitutional Amendment Act 2016 and the effect of enforcement of the provisions of the Constitutional Amendment Act have also started to raise the vibrations touching upon the continuity of levy of certain fiscals namely the Central Excise duties. Whatever consequences of adverse nature having imminent impact on the enforcement of certain provisions, the effect of the notification dated 16-9-2016 would have to be relooked at by the Government.

Now the greatest concern impacting the professional lives on the eve of the proposed GST is catching wild fire throughout all parts of the country and the entire tax practitioner professional fraternity is concentratedly looking at the leadership of AIFTP for redressal of their grievance. The tax practitioner fraternity in a nutshell desires that status quo in respect of their placements in VAT Acts shall be maintained in all respects both the qualifications as well as the status and stature of their relevance in the GST law as everyone is aware that in all the State VAT laws, there is a provision for licensing the tax practitioners for the purpose of audit of the prescribed assessees along with other tax professionals and also representational status before various quasi judicial authorities. Since the official Model Draft GST Law is not clear as to the placement of the tax practitioners in GST regime, agitation amongst themselves has gathered a momentum throughout all parts of the country. In the NEC meeting on 20-8-2016 at Jamshedpur and subsequently in the office bearers meeting on 9-9-2016 at Mumbai a decision was taken that the Federation should also contribute its mighty and powerful share in protecting the interest of the tax practitioners throughout the country as they are also the members of the Federation. Accordingly representations on behalf of the Federation duly signed by the President have been submitted to all the State Finance Ministers in the country, for, they being members in the GST Council shall consider the justification for inclusion of the tax practitioners in GST regime in terms of the existing VAT laws proposed to be subsumed in GST regime and with the active and encouragive initiation and support of the National President, in every State in the zone representations are presented to the concerned State Finance Ministers through the zone and the good sign is a tremendous positive response is vibrating everywhere to strengthen the efforts of the Federation to achieve this goal.

Federation from its side being the premier professional organization has been doing its best ahead of others since introduction of the Constitutional Amendment Bill in Loksabha to shield the interest of the tax practitioners. It has always strived for the professional interest of the concerned without any compromise and the same spirit shall continue assuring the same benefit will enure to the tax practitioners at large in the country. Already appointments are sought for with the Union Finance Minister and Revenue Secretary for explaining the cause and its jusfification for positive incorporation in the GST regime. It is the moral responsibility and bounden duty of the professional organisation to save the lives of around 2 crore human beings. It is hoped that with the positive response being received from each State, the efforts of the Federation would transform into fruitful one for being reaped by the all Tax Practitioners in the country.

Hope to see you all in 40th Year Foundation Day Celebrations at Pune.

Dr. M. V. K. Moorthy

National President


Tax Bar highly appreciates that 42 newly appointed Members of the ITAT have undergone the training programme at Nagpur from 29th August, to 3rd September, 2016.

The Tax Bar has made an appeal, that when the new Members are appointed there has to be an orientation course so that the Honourable Members of the ITAT are able to deliver qualitative judgments. [AIFTPJ September, 2015]. The Income Tax Appellate Tribunal being one of the oldest institutions of our country, is considered the Mother Tribunal of our country which celebrated its 75 years. It has a great tradition and reputation that has been built over the years, hence the new Members who have joined this institution have an even greater responsibility to preserve the purity, integrity and honour of the institution. The ITAT being the final fact finding body on direct taxes has to pass a speaking and well reasoned order. Only substantial question of law can be challenged before the High Court. One will have to appreciate that while hearing the appeals before the Tribunal, the Honourable Members of ITAT are not merely adjudicating on the issues before them but they are invariably deciding on the fortunes of the assessees. One wrong decision against an assessee may ruin his life and relegate him to the position of a pauper. At the same time, if the decision is against the Government it may affect the coffers of the Government only to an extent of a rain drop in the ocean.

In cities like Mumbai when an appeal is filed before the High Court, it can take a minimum of three years to hear the admission of appeal and assuming the appeal is admitted, it may take another 10 years to reach final hearing. At present, the appeals admitted of year 2012 are being taken up for final hearing. Hence, one can imagine the importance of the orders passed by the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal.

The Hon’ble Members of the ITAT are remembered by the quality of judgments they deliver. Due to innovation in technology, all the orders of the Tribunal are available for public scrutiny. In an appeal to High Court against the order of ITAT, the judges first read the Orders of the ITAT and thereafter they read the orders of lower authorities. Income tax Act, refers to various Central Acts and State laws, therefore while deciding important issues before the ITAT, it is very essential to know general law, which helps in delivering qualitative judgments. The training course will definitely help the members to deliver speaking and qualitative orders.

At present the pendency before the ITAT is only 92,000 appeals and we have 105 Members i.e. not more than 1,000 matters per member. With better management, use of modern technology and the help of the Tax Bar, pendency can be brought down to 75,000 and then it would be possible for tax-payers to get justice from the ITAT within six months of filing of an appeal. We desire that each and every assessee who approaches the ITAT must have the satisfaction that his grievances are heard patiently and qualitative reasoned orders are passed. We are sure that the initiation by the President of the Tribunal will go a long way in the justice delivery system of the ITAT.

Some of the Members of the ITAT are very young and it is the need of the hour that they should be groomed as ideal Members so that the institution can retain the glory as one of the finest institution of our country. We have confidence in the younger generation of Lawyers and Chartered Accountants. We feel they are more accomplished than us and far more alive. Good number of professionals are strictly following the ethics, values, and the conventions of the Tax Bar that have been inherited from respected seniors.

There is no doubt that the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal is one of the finest institutions of our country and both Bar and Bench must make a sincere attempt that it remains so. According to us, educational course must be held every year wherein all the members can participate in discussions and enrich their knowledge and experience as this will go a long way in improving the justice delivery system.

The Income Tax Appellate Tribunal Bar Associations’ co-ordination committee meeting will be held on 2nd December, 2016, at National Convention to be held at Delhi to discuss and to make representation relating to the ITAT, in respect of law, procedure, digitalisation of the ITAT, non-appointment of Vice-Presidents and introduction of concept of e-Court before the APEX Court, etc. The readers may send their objective suggestions which will be discussed and appropriate representation will be made to the concerned authorities which will help the institution to render better administration of justice.

Dr. K. Shivaram