01 August 2017
Bhubaneswar: Before posting any pictures on Facebook and Instagram, be doubly careful now as the government is planning to amass information from the pictures. The posts on the social media sites would showcase the spending patterns which will be matched by with the income declarations made by the person in question, be it a new car or a planned holiday.
This is probably to starting from August, where the Modi government is allegedly planning to amass a warehouse of virtual information from social media sites. So, the officials do not have to raid at anyone’s place to know their income level or wealth amassed as against their tax payment.This data will be used to unearth tax evasion which may have gone undetected.
India’s most ambitious tax overhaul, ‘Project Insight’ would complement the world’s largest biometric identity database, built over seven years at a cost of about Rs 1,000 crore ($156 million) and the best time to introduce this is post GST. According to sources, the government has introduced this policy because though India is the fastest growing economy, revenues are not coming in with the same pace which has increased the budget deficit.
Interestingly, India is not the the first country to have a system like this. Countries including Belgium, Canada and Australia are already using big data to unearth tax evasion that may have gone undetected without technology. ‘Project Insight’ is more similar to UK’s Connect which was built at an estimated cost of 100 million pounds. It is believed to have prevented a loss of 4.1 billion pounds ($5.4 billion) in revenue since inception in 2010.