BHUBANESWAR: Beginning January 2011 all dealers will have to file their tax returns electronically and it will be mandatory. The Commercial Taxes Department which launched online registration and filing of tax returns today is set to usher in more e-governance into day-to-day functionalities and transactions even as the convergence of trading taxes regime under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is on the anvil.
Earlier in March, e-payment was launched and the Department is looking at online availability of forms over the next couple of months.
The e-filing and e-registration was formally launched by Finance Minister Prafulla Ghadei at a function here. Nalco became the first company to file returns of Rs 2.84 crore online.
Speaking on the occasion, Ghadei said it is about time to prepare for GST. At the Goa meeting of finance ministers, Orissa proposals were accepted and the Empowered Committee has reached an unanimity.
The introduction of VAT was smooth in Orissa and the transition to GST must also follow a similar path, he said.
Principal Secretary to Finance Department Jugal Mohapatra said the big dealers and traders will have no constraints in using the electronic registration and tax filing system. However, taking e-governance to the small traders will be the real challenge.
Till recently technology was a big handicap with Finance Department but things have changed. “We are looking at reaching the last, smallest dealer by April,” he said. Finance Department will organise a series of sensitisation programmes in this direction.
Speaking on the occasion, Commissioner, Commercial Taxes Nikunja Bihari Dhal said e-registration and e-filing is a big step towards giving the business community better services and giving investment a push.
The e-payment launched earlier this year generated good response, he said. About Rs 311 crore, half of the total collection of commercial taxes in October was collected through e-payment.
Dhal informed that the Department will soon launch e-Form facility and dealers can apply for issue of all statutory forms. After receipt of e-application, the department shall carry out necessary verification and approve generation of forms at dealer’s end.