- On October 10, 2020
- data sharing, GSTR 2A, GSTR-2A reconciliation, Income tax, ITC Reconciliation
In the month of July 2020, the CBDT and CBIC have entered into an MOU where CBIC will share the GSTR-2A data with the Income Tax Department.
This is not a new thing in the tax regulatory system in India. In the time of service tax and excise duty, the Income Tax Department used to share the 26AS data with CBIC. There are so many cases of tax evasion found out by CBIC just by sharing of 26AS data.
In our previous article, we emphasized that now GSTR-2A is the new equivalent of 26AS. GSTR-2A contains such vital information about a particular business that it can be a huge data mine for the income tax authorities in finalising the assessments.
Now the government has openly come up with an MOU with its 2 departments. This means that in future, the GSTR-2A will play a very important role in income tax assessments.
How GSTR-2A can play a game-changing role in tax assessments, let’s discuss.
- Expense Verification: The verification of expenses claimed by an income taxpayer can be done from the GSTR-2A data. If expenses data primarily matches with the GSTR-2A, it can be reasonably assumed that the expenses are verified. If data is not matching then there is something fishy about it.
- Unexplained Expenses: GSTR-2A can show the data of such expenses which have not been claimed by the income taxpayer. This will form a basis of enquiry as to check for the source of such expenses incurred. If the taxpayer is not able to justify the source of the expenses incurred, then it can be treated as unexplained expenses by the taxpayer.
- Underreported income: GSTR-2A can give a good idea about the size of the business. At present, many cases are showing on the income tax compliance portal where the taxpayer is having entries in his GSTR-2A but not filing the income tax return or not disclosing adequate turnover in the income tax return. This will help in unearthing the underreported income by the income tax department.
- Non-existing firms: In GST era, the government is facing serious challenges in the form of the dummy and non-existing firms. There are many cases where a GST registered firm is running in a person’s name without the knowledge of the said person. With data sharing between CBIC & CBDT, this will introduce an additional check for finding out the non-existing firms in GST.
The above points are just a brief view of how powerful GSTR-2A can be in tax compliance. Government is now sitting on huge data where it can extract such information which an ordinary taxpayer cannot imagine.
Reconciliation of GSTR-2A is now more important than ever before as it will be treated as a “Janam Kundali” of the taxpayer by the assessing authorities.