Govt hopes to surpass tax collections target this fiscal

"Revenue target for this year is 7.45 lakh crore and I see no reason why we should not achieve it ... As a matter of fact if things go as they are, we expect to make a modest increase over the targets," Revenue Secretary Sunil Mitra told reporters on the sidelines of a seminar here.

He, however, refused to give any revised figures and said no new numbers have been fixed as of now.

Mitra said that during April-October, the government has collected over 50 per cent of the budgeted target.

"In the first seven months of the fiscal we are a little over 50 per cent of our budgeted target which, if taken together, is about 28 per cent higher than what we were at this time last year," he said.

The government had fixed a target of Rs 7.45 lakh crore for the fiscal, about 19 per cent higher than last fiscal.

According to latest figures released by the government, direct tax collections rose by 19 per cent to Rs 1.82 crore in the first half (April-September) of the current fiscal compared to that in the same period last year.

During the same period, indirect tax collection also climbed more than 44 per cent to Rs 1.51 lakh crore, as compared to the year-ago period.

Hit by stimulus packages, that include tax cuts, given to spur up the economy impacted by the global financial meltdown, tax collections took a beating last fiscal. Tax mop up fell short of the target of Rs 6.41 lakh crore in 2009-10.

This year, the government partially rolled back stimulus and raised excise duty by two per cent to 10 per cent.

As a result, the Revenue Secretary said, excise duty collections recorded a 25 per cent increase during April-October this fiscal.

Asked about the Vodafone issue, Mitra said: "We have submitted our calculations on what they owe by tax liability. There has to be further direction on this now from courts."

The government had asked Vodafone to pay Rs 11,218 crore in taxes for the acquisition of Hutchison's stake in a telecom joint venture in India in 2007, a claim contested by telecom firm. 

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