New Delhi: A rush of black money declarants under the one-time compliance window peaked across various Income Tax Department offices on the last day on Friday with the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) indicating the collections to be "very good" and that they may touch an estimated Rs. 40,000-Rs.50,000 crore.
Reports trickling in from across the country at CBDT, the policymaking body of the department, at North Block in the Finance Ministry said an increased number of "physical and online" declarations under the Income Declaration Scheme (IDS) are being reported since morning even as the collections are expected to go on steady till midnight when the deadline will end.
At the national capital's two prominent I-T offices at Central Revenue building at ITO and at the Civic Centre near Connaught Place, people could be seen approaching the designated counters to submit their declarations under the IDS that closed on Friday.
Tax lawyers and CAs were seen making a declaration for their client based in the national capital at one of the I-T offices here but refused to give out any information.
"The maximum declarations are coming and will come through the online mode as it ensures confidentiality. However, the department does not want to leave any stone unturned in this regard and hence all the earmarked physical counters will be open till midnight as ordered by the CBDT," a senior official said.
Top sources in the Finance Ministry said the scheme has turned out to be "very successful" and the results are expected to beat expectations and stipulated targets set in this regard.
While there is no official word about the collections, a number of senior I-T officials PTI spoke to said they are touching the Rs. 40,000 crore-Rs. 50,000 mark.
"We can surely say the collections under IDS have been very good. People have shown interest. However, we are not authorised to talk to the media and the government will make an announcement in this regard soon," the officials said.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will hold a press conference to declare IDS results at 3 p.m. on Saturday, they said.
In order to facilitate physical declarations, officials said, the office of the Principal Chief Commissioner of Delhi has made elaborate arrangements of food and travel for the staff that will keep the midnight vigil.
Huge posters and publicity material can been seen spread out at the I-T offices here that urge stash holders to "come clean" and protect themselves "from scrutiny and enquiry" that will be initiated against evaders once the window closes.
The government has also ensured complete confidentiality on the declarations made under the Income Declaration Scheme (IDS).
In Bengaluru, the officials said, "a special team has been deployed at the Central Processing Centre to collect and collate the declarations that are being made online over the official e-filing portal of the I-T department.
"Figures are regularly being updated to the CBDT where Chairperson Rani Singh Nair is on livewire contact with her regional heads," they said.
A special CBDT team, they said, has been deputed to collate and tally country-wide figures tomorrow morning after which the full data will be handed over to the office of the Finance Minister.
To make compliance under IDS more easy, the government had a few months back extended the deadline for payment of tax and penalty under the window. It had also allowed declarants to pay the amount in three installments by September 30 next year.
The first instalment of 25 percent under the IDS 2016 will have to be paid by November 2016, followed by another 25 percent by March 31, 2017.
The remaining amount will have to be paid to the exchequer by September 30, 2017.
Earlier the tax, surcharge and penalty under the black money disclosure window were required to be paid by November 30.
The scheme was announced by the government with an aim of bringing out black money from the domestic economy. The government had come out with a similar scheme for Indians holding undisclosed income abroad.
The scheme will apply to undisclosed income whether in the form of investment in assets or otherwise, pertaining to financial year 2015-16 or earlier. The declarations can also be made online at the official e-filing portal of the department.
The four-month Income Declaration Scheme was opened on June 1.