As part of a transparency drive, the government has made public direct tax data for last 15 years. Data for individuals has been published only for 2012-13 assessment year, which shows taxes for income in financial year ended March 31, 2012.
A total of 2.87 crore individuals filed income tax returns for that year, but 1.62 crore of them did not pay any tax — leaving the number of taxpayers at just about 1.25 crore which was close to 1% of the country’s total population of about 123 crore at that time.
Income Tax dept’s ‘grievance fortnight’ event a non-starter
The tax outgo was less than Rs 1.5 lakh for a vast majority of nearly 89% taxpayers (over 1.11 crore).
Their average tax payable was just about Rs 21,000, while the collective amount stood at over Rs 23,000 crore.
The three individuals in the top-bracket of Rs 100-500 crore paid a total tax of Rs 437 crore — resulting in an average tax outgo of Rs 145.80 crore.
As many as 5,430 individuals paid income tax of over Rs 1 crore. Out of this, the tax range was Rs 1-5 crore for more than 5,000 individuals, resulting in a total outgo of Rs 8,907 crore.
As per the overall data, total income tax collections rose nine-fold to Rs 2.86 lakh crore in 2015-16, from Rs 31,764 crore in 2000-01.
The data further said that the bulk of individuals who filed returns for the assessment year 2012-13 earned an annual salary between Rs 5.5 lakh and Rs 9.5 lakh.
Over 20.23 lakh taxpayers earned Rs 5.5-9.5 lakh, while their cumulative salary earnings stood at Rs 1.40 lakh crore in the financial year 2011-12.
Further 19.18 lakh individuals earned salary of Rs 2.5-3.5 lakh that year.
Six individuals fell in the high-end earning bracket of Rs 50-100 crore of salary income.
In the salary range of Rs 1-5 crore, there were as many as 17,515 individuals.
Nearly 2.87 crore salary earners filed their I-T returns in assessment year 2012-13.