Rest assured. Your PAN will become invalid if you do not link it with Aadhaar, this does not mean that the sorry event will occur on July 1. In fact, the linking becomes mandatory from July 1 and not before that. As to a cut-off-date, the government has not announced one yet. Officials from the Income Tax Department clarified to the media that a date will be notified later and that PAN holders need not panic now.
On June 9, 2017, the Supreme Court passed a verdict favouring the linking of PAN and Aadhaar numbers, settling the issue irrevocably. After July 1, those who have Aadhaar identity documents will not be able to file income-tax returns unless they link the PAN and Aadhaar.
The Supreme Court verdict did offer relief to those who do not have and do not want Aadhaar and also stated that PAN Cards without an Aadhaar number will not be treated as invalid. Nevertheless, considering that over a billion Aadhaar cards have been issued in a country with a population of 1.25 billion, almost the entire base of taxpayers stands to be affected by the verdict.
How to link?
Following the initial announcement in March, there were a lot of issues over people’s inability to link their PAN and Aadhaar numbers owing to a mismatch in name, or other details. Malfunctioning links also added to the pain. However, now the Income Tax Department recently simplified the process.
Step 1: Visit https://incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in/e-Filing/Services/LinkAadhaarHome.html
Step 2: Provide your PAN, Aadhaar number and enter name exactly as given in Aadhaar card (avoid spelling mistakes) and click submit.
The I-T department also clarified that one does not need to login to the e-filing website to complete the above process.
In case there is a minor mismatch in Aadhaar name provided by taxpayer when compared to the actual data in Aadhaar database, an OTP will be sent to the registered mobile number. You should ensure that the date of birth and gender in PAN and Aadhaar are exactly same.
However, where there is a complete name mismatch with the PAN card, the linking will fail. In such a case, you can upload a scanned copy of the PAN Card on the Aadhaar website so as to facilitate the linking. You can also visit the below links to update your PAN and Aadhaar details:
Update PAN Details via NSDL portal
Update Aadhaar details via UIDAI portal
Legal precedent for invalidating PAN
There is a ‘direct reference’ to linking in Sec. 139AA and the consequences of not doing so. “The section says that every PAN allottee, as on July 1, 2017, has to intimate the Aadhaar number to Authority in the form prescribed. Once they intimate the number, it would be linked by the authorities. If the Aaadhar number is not intimated, the PAN will be considered to be invalid,” Vaibhav Parikh, Partner, Nishith Desai Associates, told The Finapolis.
(A version of this article originally appeared in the June 2017 print edition of the Finapolis. Click here to Subscribe)