1.CBDT has issued notification S.O. 626(E), dated 28th March 2012 vide which e-Filing has been made compulsory for Assessment Year 2012-13 onwards for:
• an individual or a Hindu undivided family, if his or its total income, or the total income in respect of which he is or it is assessable under the Act during the previous year, exceeds ten lakh rupees; and
• an individual or a Hindu Undivided Family (HUF), being a resident, having assets (including financial interest in any entity) located outside India or signing authority in any account located outside India and required to furnish the return in Form ITR-2 or ITR-3 or ITR-4.
However, digital signature will not be mandatory for these taxpayers and they can also transmit the data in the return electronically and thereafter submit the verification of the return in Form ITR-V.
2. Filing of returns electronically under digital signatures is already mandatory for any company required to furnish the return in Form ITR-6 or a firm required to furnish the return in Form ITR-5 or an individual or HUF required to furnish the return in Form ITR-4 and to whom provisions of section 44AB are applicable.
3. The Income Tax Department has received a record number of 1.64 crore income tax returns electronically in the year 2011-12. E-filing is an easy, fast and secure method of filing of income tax return. The electronically filed returns are processed at the Centralized Processing Centre, Bangalore. The processing for e-filed return is faster and taxpayers get their refunds, if due, quickly. The Department also provides some value added services like tracking of refunds, viewing tax credit status (Form 26AS), e-mail and SMS alerts regarding status of processing and refunds to taxpayers who e-file their returns.