Monday, September 29, 2008

Tax Return preparers

This news has been in the air for a while (a long time now actually) - that we would soon be seeing Certified Tax Return preparers, who are basically graduates who will help you and I file our returns. NIIT had bagged this mandate from the government. Why is this important?

For a variety of reasons. In any case Chartered Accountants have had a free run with helping us file our returns, using these very same graduates, so now there is a chance for some of these guys to do their own thing and get a better share of the spoils. Ideally, if it were like the US with e-returns, the whole process can be simplified further, but as of now we are further away from e-returns than we would like. And, as always, there is a surplus labour force that can be used smartly in situations like these.

Second, the presence of NIIT. NIIT has demonstrated that it can churn out salesmen and IT chaps alike. There is no reason that that model can be spread to include graduates. Perhaps NIIT can be used to train better tour guides and many other things. They can become the "teacher" of the nation, a finishing school for some professions and a creation school for others - almost like the ITIs in the service industry!

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