Wednesday May 22, 2024

Tax troubles

By News Desk
April 17, 2024
Tax troubles

This letter refers to the news report ‘Proposal to end one tax appellate forum to free up Rs2.7tr stuck in litigation’ (April 16, 2024). This is a most inappropriate step for many reasons but one important reason is that if basic tax assessments are to be automatically handled by artificial digital intelligence there are bound to be more errors as the performance of AI algorithms depends on the quantity and quality of data and IT infrastructure and not on any human-verifiable factor. One drawback of computer-based technologies is that they, unlike manual registers, are very hard to correct.

In this context, it is illogical that the scope of appeals would be limited to procedural errors and not much checking of basic facts. I think our economy would be better off if we started with serious audits of money being spent by the government. The job of a PM is not to be a rubber stamp for the bureaucracy and vested interests.

M Shaikh