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Simply unbelievable!



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The volunteers of Parivartan did it!

The dharna in Income Tax Department was extremely successful. The entire
hierarchy 
was shaken right at the roots. 7 Chief Commissioners of Income Tax were
closetted 
for three hours to find a solution to dharna and ultimately decided to yield. 
They have asked us to collect copies of instructions on 13th of this month.
All 
other commitments made in Delhi High Court, which they were not implementing, 
will also be implemented by then. 

It began at 9.15 am when 30 volunteers of Parivartan assembled at Central
Revenues 
Building at ITO in Delhi. At 10.00 am, they marched upto the Chief
Commissioners 
room and sought an appointment. He refused to meet us. He directed us to his 
Additional Commissioner. We asked the Additional Commissioner to give us the 
copies of instructions purported to have been issued as per the affidavit
filed 
in Delhi High court. They claimed that these instructions were confidential
and 
cannot be shown. We argued that how could the instructions which are meant
for 
public be confidential. They did not listen. Dissatisfied, we sat outside the 
Chief Commissioners room. The Chief Commissioner immediately called us in. He 
had 55 minutes meeting with us and tried to persuade us that we do not insist 
on the implementation of this affidavit and that he is working very hard and 
will remove corruption from the department in 3 months. We, however, insisted 
on the implementation of the affidavit. He said that he is not aware of the
details 
of the affidavit. We told him that we were sitting outside peacefully and he 
could discuss it with his officers. 

It was a long day. Informal and inside information reveals that actually, no 
such instructions have been issued. It was a false affidavit filed by them.
They 
kept looking for some face saving measure the whole day. Some mediamen also
landed 
up and made things difficult for them. 

At 5.30 pm, we were again called in. There were 7 Chief Commissioners sitting 
inside. It seems they had been having meeting for the last 3 hours to find a 
solution to our dharna. They again started beating around the bush. For one
hour, 
they refused to come to the point and were doing only sweet talk. In the end, 
our volunteers got up and came out. One Chief Commissioner came out running
and 
assured that all the instructions will be put on the notice board and
published 
in the media by the 13th of this month in 10 days time. He requested us to
come 
and collect it on 13th. 

To remind you, Parivartan had filed a PIL in Delhi High Court on the issue of 
harassment and corruption faced by small taxpayers in getting their refunds, 
PAN, tax clearance certificates etc. Parivartan had also suggested certain
measures, 
which if implemented, would drastically reduce corruption in these areas. In 
response, the Chief Commissioner filed an affidavit on 19th April, 2001. This 
affidavit stated that 

1.	Instructions have been issued to all the officers to issue refunds in
chronological 
order in accordance with return receipt numbers.
2.	Instructions have been issued to all the officials to dispose applications 
from the public within the time limits specified in the Citizens Charter. 
3.	The return receipt numbers upto which refunds have been issued by the end 
of the previous month will be displayed on the notice boards of the
department 
in the interest of transparency.

However, in practice, the Department did not implement any of these measures. 
No such instructions were issued. If these measures are implemented
genuinely, 
it will bring relief from corruption and harassment to a large number of
small 
taxpayers especially the salaried class. 

It was in order to get these measures implemented that we sat on dharna
today. 

Three cheers to the entire team. Three cheers to those also who could not
participate 
directly but had sent their signed letters as a part of signature campaign.

Lets all unite to make India better

Parivartan


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