26AS Income Tax India

I was totally flabbergasted when an e-mail from IT India popped up in my inbox at 0140 hrs!!! My first reaction was that they are tracking down people who haven't paid their returns. I haven't this year, yet. My excuse, covering up laziness, is that I didn't have any regular income to do that. Then, I thought maybe its about my long overdue IT refund. It was neither. I read the mail and read again, after I opened the attachments about my TDS account, my 26AS form [Annual (Tax) Statement]. This is what it was, in their own words: The Income Tax Department (ITD) has started transmitting the Annual Tax Statement of taxpayers as a part of its citizen centric exercise.

Interesting, very interesting. However a good move that is, it still reminds me of my job at L&T where I used to make hectic company tours, mostly back to back. That was almost 13 yrs back when my salary was menial -- well, old economy job as it was-- and it wasn't a good idea to put all my money in company tours with travel advance shelved for further tours, till earlier statements were cleared. My co. used to keep my statements pending when money was due to me, and clear it off faster when it was the other way around. There was a simple Chanakya Neeti solution for me: an overdrawn
IOU (I Owe yoU) advance.

All this detour just to say that everyone wants you when you owe them money, no one is going to come and give your dues to you. The age old principles applies to India IT as well. They are not going to mail me for IT refund for AY2007-2008, but they have an account of my TDS ready and mailed for AY2008-2009. Perfect.

In any case, we must all pay our TDS, advance tax, IT returns, however bad our govt utilizes that money (maintains); aren't we "responsible citizens" after all? :)

Vande Mataram, Jai Hind!
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