Filing of income tax
returns online is very easy and free, especially for salaried people and
there is no need to visit paid sites for e-filing your I-T
Every year July not only brings heavy downpour but also makes
every salaried taxpayer rush to file income
tax (I-T) returns. Filing returns
before 31st July has now become quite easy, especially with the electronic
filing; one can file it online without taking any help from accountants or a
chartered accountants (CAs).
There are a number of websites like Taxspanner.com (charges
Rs249 onwards), HRblock.in (Rs99 onwards), Taxsmile.com (Rs250 onwards),
taxshax.com (Rs181 onwards), myITreturn.com (free for those with income of less
than Rs5 lakh, for others Rs299 onwards) that offer e-filing of tax returns for
a small fee.
However, anyone can file his/her I-T return directly from the
Income Tax department’s website https://incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in/,
without paying any money. I had used both—the paid service as well as free
service for filing my I-T returns. Although, both services come out as good, I
found the I-T department’s service little bit faster and satisfactory compared
to other sites.
For filing I-T returns online (for salaried people), you need
to have your Form 16 (for FY2012-13 or AY2013-14) ready with you. You will also
need your bank statements showing interest or any other income earned, if any,
during April 2012 to March 2013. Here are some tips or guidelines for filing
their I-T returns online based on my personal experience...
1. While we often remain dependent on accounting professionals for tax computation, one can always
verify or calculate his/her own tax liabilities. I have been using a very good
and free software (actually an Excel file) from a Bengaluru-based software
professional Nithyanand. One can download the Excel file from http://www.ynithya.com/taxcalc/taxcalc.htm
and calculate the approximate tax liabilities. For FY2012-13, you will need to
download the specific Excel file either .XLSX or
This simple utility comes with an excellent help or
guidelines, using which all you need to do is enter your data. Once done, it
gives a fair idea about your approximate income tax liability, and whether you
had paid the tax in full or not. (In case it is not paid in full, you can always
pay it through the NSDL website or online banking after selecting the
appropriate challan. After making the payment, you would receive a challan
identification number that is required for filing the actual return
3. After login, select appropriate Income-Tax return (ITR)
form. There are five types of ITR forms, ITR-1 or Sahaj, ITR-2, ITR-3, ITR-4 and
ITR-4S (Sugam) for individuals or HUFs. If you do not have any other income
except from salary, you can select ITR-1. To know more about the ITR forms you
can visit https://incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in/portal/selectforms.do
4. Download a small file or return preparation software as the
I-T department calls it. This comes in .zip format that can be unzipped to open
the Excel file. There is also a help file that gets downloaded along with this
software, which you can refer to for enabling macros, if needed.
5. Open the Excel file. Fill in the data on the first page
using your Form 16 and Nithya’s calculator. You need to fill in all fields
marked in green colour. If you have a home loan for a self-occupied house, then
you can mention the interest paid using '-' sign in the income from one house
property column. (Principal on home loan up to Rs1 lakh is exempted under
chapter VI (Section 80C)) Check and verify the data you filled in the form.
Double check and verify it with your source files or with Form 16 and Nithya’s
calculator. Then click on the ‘Validate’ tab at the top corner on the right
side. This will show if there is any data missing. If every field is filled in,
it will give you an OK. You can then click on ‘Next’ tab.
6. This will open the second page (TDS). Here you need to fill
in details like tax deduction number (TAN) of your employer/s (It is mentioned
in the Form 16), and the tax deducted or TDS (Section 22 on the form). You need
to provide same details of other employer/s if there is a change in the job
during the year. In case, you have paid the tax on your own, then provide the
details like BSR code, challan number and amount in Section 24 near the bottom
of the page. Repeat the validation process and if everything is OK, then go to
7. On the next page, you need to provide your bank account
number, IFS code of the bank (it is mentioned on your chequebook) and type of
account. Make sure that the bank account number is your regular and personal
account rather than salary account. This helps in case there is any refund
payable to you. Often, people quote their salary account in this form and find
it difficult to get tax refunds in case of change in job or closure of this
8. Fill in other details like your name, place, PAN number and
date. Double-check and verify all data you had entered on this page. If
everything is right and there are no errors, click on the ‘validate’ tab. After
a validation check, click on the ‘Generate’ tab on first page. This will create
an xml file. Store it on your PC/desktop or laptop.
9. Login to the https://incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in/portal/login.do site using your username and password. Click on the 'Quick e-file ITR'
link on the left hand side. Select the relevant form (here ITR-1) and assessment
year (here AY2013-14). Select prefill address from suitable options. If you have
digital signature then you can use it. Otherwise, you can select 'No' option and
proceed. Click on ‘submit returns’.
10. Browse to select the xml file, you had created earlier,
and click on ‘Upload’ button.
11. If the uploading is successful, you will get an on-screen
acknowledgement. Take a print-out of the acknowledgement or ITR-V form. You
would also receive the acknowledgement in your email inbox. This is a password
protected file. You can read the directions on the website to open this
12. If you are using digital
signature, then after receiving the acknowledgement, the process for
e-filing is over for you.
13. In case you are not a using digital signature for filing
returns, you need to sign on the acknowledgement or ITR-V form. Make a Xerox
copy of this signed form. Send the signed form to...
Income Tax Department –
Post Bag No - 1,
Electronic City Post Office,
Bengaluru - 560100, Karnataka
Use ordinary post or Speed Post for sending the form, within
120 days after submitting your returns online. The I-T Department does not
accept forms sent through registered post or courier.
14. Remember, you just need to send the signed acknowledgement
or ITR-V form. There is no need to send either Form 16 or any other document to
the CPC. However, keep all relevant documents safely in your
15. After few days, you will receive an email from the CPC
that would acknowledge the receipt of your ITR-V form. This makes the e-filing
of I-T returns complete.