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How long does it take to file your tax return? Just a few minutes now, if you have no problem with the income and deductions entered by the income tax portal. The taxman now, with more and more PAN-related transactions, has a good idea of ​​how much you earn, save and spend. This makes it hard to dodge, especially if you’re in the formal sector. The informal sector is a whole other story, but we are not going there.

The deposit facility

The new e-deposit portal is a boon for ordinary taxpayers, especially salaried employees, as much of your income and other savings and deposit details, including interest earned on them, are captured. And it’s easy to complete your online forms and file your returns.

All you have to do is check all your personal data and make any corrections. Also go through the income and deductions entered and match them to your Form 16 and actual savings and investment figures. Make the required changes by adding or modifying the required fields.

Once you’ve gone through them, the next step is to validate all of your entries and submit your feedback. If you paid less tax than necessary, you will be asked to make the payment. If you are entitled to a refund, the amount will be displayed for your benefit.

Once done, all you have to do is press submit and then validate your return by entering, among other options, the OTP you receive if you opt for the Aadhaar e-verify option.

So ! It’s that simple.

The Glitchy Portal

In fact, not quite. It should have been that simple. In fact, it was for many of my family members that I helped with their declarations. Alas, I was not so lucky. My return filed online before the due date, I thought, was complete after pressing the submit button. This was not the case. When I logged back in a few days later to electronically verify my return – I needed to update the phone number linked to my Aadhaar to receive the OTP, again surprisingly not a very cumbersome process – I discovered to my dismay that my statement was not submitted. In fact, now the calculation showed that I had to pay nominal tax.

Alright, you think. Why quibble over the calculation and pay the tax. Now you proceed to submit. But the portal does not allow you to continue. A message appears stating that you have missed the return filing deadline and must now file the return as “after the due date”. You feel a little upset because this puts a stain on your “on time” due diligence record. Yet, you resign yourself to your fate and proceed to change the option from one section that says “before due date” to one that says “after due date”. Guess what? The cursor goes there, you can hover the finger of the cursor hand over the option to click, but you cannot click it to revise the option. It’s a basic problem for a website that shouldn’t take a lot of time to solve, you think. Yet it is.

A few tickets raised later, you still stand helpless, eagerly waiting to submit your statement, but an IT assistant in the back seems to be reveling in your misery. Don’t do that kid! Have a heart, fix this fucking bug. Nothing.

You get responses to tickets raised, you can’t fault the system for being responsive. They answer. First time was to stay, problem solved. But that was not the case. The second time, the response was more cautious. He suggested that the problem has been fixed, but if it still hasn’t, send an email to a particular address with the screenshot et al. I did. And now I wait.

The discomfort of not filing

Being a regular and honest taxpayer, not being able to file your returns is not a pleasant feeling. You feel that something important is incomplete. It worries you. But you have to wait.

In fact, I hope the government will extend the tax filing deadline anytime beyond today so that I can file my tax returns without changing the filing option. I know that’s a bit of a selfish request, but Minister of Finance, please.

Thank you very much!


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