Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday announced that people who do not have PAN (permanent account number) will soon be able to file their ITR (income tax return) just by quoting their Aadhaar number. PAN has so far been mandatory for filing an ITR. Ms Sitharaman, while presenting the Budget for the current financial year, also said those who do not have PAN can simply quote their Aadhaar number wherever PAN is mandatory to quote. (Also read: Nirmala Sitharaman's Budget in 10 points)
Here are key things to know about new Aadhaar, PAN rules:
1. Aadhaar can now be quoted for cash transactions of more than Rs. 50,000. Banks and other institutions will make backend upgrades to allow acceptance of Aadhaar in all places where quoting PAN is now mandatory, news agency Press Trust of India quoted Revenue Secretary Ajay Bhushan Pandey as saying.
2. The taxman will "suo motu" allot a fresh PAN to a person who files I-T returns with only Aadhaar as part of a new arrangement to link the two databases, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), chairman, Pramod Chandra Mody said on Sunday. The PAN is "certainly not dead" and the recent Budget announcement of interchangeability of the two databases is an "additional facility" to ensure their linkage, which is now mandatory under the law, he said.
3. "In cases where Aadhaar is being quoted and PAN is not there, we could possibly think on the terms of allotting a PAN to the person (who is filing income tax return)," Mr Mody told Press Trust of India.
4. While Aadhaar is issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) to an Indian resident, PAN is a 10-digit alphanumeric number allotted by the tax department to a person, firm or entity.
5. According to experts, the announcement to make Aadhaar and PAN interchangeable for filing ITR is likely to increase the taxpayer base. "Aadhaar has wider coverage than PAN i.e. more Aadhaar cards are issued than PAN - so in terms of checking evasion it may serve better," said Archit Gupta, founder and CEO, ClearTax.
(With inputs from PTI)