All that you need to know if you want to be an Income Tax Officer

Would you like to ensure that India's wealth is properly managed and accounted for? Then maybe a career as an income tax officer is what you should be looking at. Do you keep thinking about money all the time? Are you someone who would like to master the intricacies of the financial world and catch those who try to sneak through the loopholes?

Career Overview 

The Apex body of the Income Tax Department is the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), which is manned by the officers of the Indian Revenue Service. This body is the administrative head of the Income Tax Department and functions under the Finance Ministry of India.

The Income tax department operates out of various geographical regions, which are a collection of states. For e.g. the North West region comprises of Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir and Chandigarh; the Western region consists of the states of Gujarat and Maharashtra. You will be working in any of the following directorates:

Directorate of Taxes
Your immediate work will involve assessment and collection of taxes like Income Tax Act, Wealth Tax, etc. You will verify that the accounts for private individuals, companies, industries, educational institutions, etc have been audited accurately. You have to see to it that all the proper taxes as applicable have been levied and also grant exemptions wherever required by law.

Directorate of Appeals
Here you will look at all the appeals filed for a refund or reassessment. You will have to decide if the case merits an appeal. You will have to redo the entire auditing procedure. In the event that the government has deducted more tax than it is entitled to, you will have to ensure that the extra amount is refunded as soon as possible.

Directorate of Investigation
In this department you will be snooping around to find all elusive 'black money'- the term commonly associated with undeclared wealth. You will identify individuals and organisations withholding money or owning assets like cars, bungalows, etc. which are above and beyond the reach of their declared income. You will then conduct surprise raids to recover the wealth, which could be in the form of cash, jewellery or immovable property such as a house.

At the senior level, you will be working in the Central Board of Direct Taxes. Here you will plan tax legislations as per the directive of the government and over see their implementation. You will also need to come up with new and innovative schemes like VDIS (Voluntary Disclosure of Income Scheme) to encourage more people to pay their taxes and disclose their hidden wealth.