No tribal, Dalit member in CBDT for last 30 years
A commissioner of income tax, however, explained that as many SC, ST candidates join the services late, they retire much before attaining a senior position, and so, may lose out in empanelment for the top tax body.Updated: Aug 28, 2017 22:29 IST
The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has not had any Dalit or tribal member in the last thirty years, even as the country has gone through much upheaval over reservation during the period.
The CBDT is the statutory authority that handles matters of levy and collection of income tax and other direct taxes and has a chairperson and six members.
“As per the records available in the revenue (headquarters), no member from the SC/ST community has been appointed as member of CBDT since 1987. Information prior to 1987 is not available,” the tax panel said in its written reply to the parliamentary committee on Welfare of Scheduled Castes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST).
With the Mandal Commission report in the early 1980s changing the face of reservation in the country, representation of Dalits and tribals increased manifold in several government bodies, smoothening the roads for an inclusive growth.
The government, from time to time, has also called for affirmative action for greater participation of backward communities in jobs and education facilities. There have been demands to extend the quota policy in areas like private sector and judiciary.
However, the CBDT has remained untouched by all that.
“This is not a healthy trend,” a member of the parliamentary panel told HT, also noting that there is “no representation of SC/ST members in many PSUs and other government boards”.
Another member pointed out that the panel is not concerned about the nature of work of the CBDT but the focus is on welfare and empowerment of SC/STs.
Sources in the income tax department told HT that members of the CBDT are picked by the government from a panel of senior Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officers.
“The Department of Personnel and Training (DOPT) prepares a list of senior officers and the finance ministry, in consultation with other departments, pick members for the board. It’s an ex-officio post,” said a source.
Once selected, the officer has to resign from his or her parent cadre before joining the new role.
A commissioner of income tax, however, explained that as many SC, ST candidates join the services late, they retire much before attaining a senior position, and so, may lose out in empanelment for the top tax body.
First Published: Aug 28, 2017 22:27 IST