you are here: HomeNewsIndia

CBDT chargesheets three IRS officers for report on tax hike

These officers also have been divested of their current duties on charges of violating Rules 9 and 3(1)(xx) of the Central Civil Service Conduct Rules

April 28, 2020 / 09:16 AM IST

Three Indian Revenue Services (IRS) officers were issued chargesheets by the Central Board of Direct Taxes on April 27.

The officers, of rank principal commissioner, have been charged for "misguiding" young taxmen and "unauthorisedly" making public a report that called for a hike in taxes to fund the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The three IRS officers - Sanjay Bahadur (principal director investigation, northeast region; 1989 batch), Shri Prakash Dubey (director DOPT, IRS Association's joint secretary; 2001 batch) and Prashant Bhushan (principal commissioner of income tax, Delhi, and IRS Association's general secretary; 1988 batch) - have been given 15 days time to submit a written response in their defence to the chargesheets and also on whether they want to be heard in person.

A preliminary inquiry by the CBDT revealed the "role and complicity" of these senior officers in the preparation of the report named FORCE (Fiscal Options & Response to the COVID-19 Epidemic), which advocated tax hike, the imposition of wealth tax, inheritance tax, the imposition of COVID-19 surcharge, sources said.

According to the inquiry, while Dubey and Bahadur got junior officers to prepare a report and unauthorisedly gave it to the IRS Association which made it public, Bhushan unauthorisedly put the report in public domain.

Close

COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

View more
How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

View more
Show

These officers also have been divested of their current duties on charges of violating Rules 9 and 3(1)(xx) of the Central Civil Service Conduct Rules.

"The government would have definitely given due consideration to suggestions made by the young officers.However, in this case, the reports, instead of being sent to the government through official channel, these senior officers of rank of principal commissioner misguided them and went public with report which created panic and tax policy uncertainty in the already stressed economic conditions in the country," a source said.

The controversial report, prepared by about 50 young IRS officers, among others things suggested raising the highest tax slab rate to 40 percent for income above a minimum threshold of Rs 1 crore or re-introduction of wealth tax for those with a net wealth of Rs 5 crore or more to help pay for the coronavirus economic fallout.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Apr 28, 2020 09:16 am

stay updated

Get Daily News on your Browser
Sections