Beware: ‘Inside’ will reveal your inside info

Income tax payers and pan card holders, take care.  The new financial year will bring trouble for income tax payers and pan card holders who show off their richness on social media. The income tax department is introducing, ‘Project Inside’, from April 1 under which a special software will keep watch on social media posts of tax payers. If anyone is flaunting wealth, the software will inform assessing officer of department.

Insight Project will monitor information of people who purchase expensive items but have not informed department about it. Moreover, the income tax department will keep watch on transactions of bank accounts from where money was used to purchasing high value items, which people show on social media.

The income tax department had planned to start Project Insight last year but failed. However, the project will be implemented from April 1 across the country. For the project, a software has been developed by L & T Company while its separate central sever has been set up in Noida (UP). The sever will track the social media post of tax payers with their Permanent Account Number (PAN), which is linked with bank account and income tax returns.

Under the project, the expenditure limit of people will be matched with bank accounts as well as social media such as Facebook, Instagram. The department has spent Rs 1,000 crore on this project. The project was being prepared for past seven years. The objective of government is to create world’s largest biometric database through this project. Through this data base, income tax department, ED, banks and NIA will track tax evasion.  The government believes that many people avoid giving information about their earnings. At the same time, people post photographs of homes, bikes, cars, tours on social media so that others can know.

“Project Insight will be a master stroke to track tax evasion. Under Sections 69, 69-A,B and C of Income Tax Act, 1961, the department is empowered to check expenditures, money and amount of investment not disclosed in books of accounts. In this way, the social media platforms will be next sources to trace tax evasion.”
-SN Goyal, senior income tax consultant

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