Do what you do best and outsource the rest. Income Tax department has finally realized that. It has outsourced most of its operations to a BPO, which will be set-up by Infosys. I-T department will be focusing more on tax evaders.
There are 5 lakh cases pending at the I-T department at the end of the year 2008. I-T department is also facing severe shortage of manpower, which is estimated to be 33% of the total workforce. Posts of Deputy and assistant commissioners itself are falling short by 33%.
I-T department will take the help of Infosys to set-up a centralized processing unit for tax returns. With this new BPO you can expect your tax returns to come a lot quicker. The pilot will be set-up in Bangalore in the next 6 months an will be tested on citizens of Bangalore. In 5 years time other centers will be rolled out across the country.
Infosys will be paid 250 crores for 5 years. I-T department will provide the office space and Infosys will be responsible for the hardware, logistics to move scanned tax returns to the centralized processing unit and software for data mining.
There is one issue though. The privacy of the taxpayer is at risk. Infosys staff will be privy to the information of the citizens. Mint says that there are no laws to protect the privacy so government is free to outsource its operations. This is a little discomforting. I am sure there will be checks and balances in place. But, we all know what checks and balances have done so far.
If you are in Bangalore expect your tax returns faster. (source)