New Delhi: At the start of the new financial year on April 1, a major revenue collection department of the government is going to instal a 'chowkidar' (watchman) that is expected to cut tax evasion to zero.  

With the general election just round the corner, political parties have been fighting over Chowkidar-Chor slogans, and this initiative by the government is significant given the extent of tax evasion that happens in the country at present. It will help to shore up the Indian economy by stopping tax leakage. 

The ministry of finance has installed a tax tracker software in the computers of the income tax department. The software, installed at the cost of Rs 1,000 crore, will calculate the income and expenditure of the registered taxpayers. The tax tracker software will use a technology like artificial intelligence. 

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According to sources, the tax tracker software was produced after years of research. The software was handed over to the income tax department on March 15, 2019 so that its installation on the computer network of the department could be completed within the set deadline. 

Notably, the government had introduced the goods and services tax on July 1, 2017 and undertook 100% computerisation of collection of a tax that is one of the biggest sources of revenue for the government. 

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With this software, the government plans to nab tax evaders, increase the number of taxpayers and fix the tax responsibility of those not filing returns. The information collected with the help of the tax tracker software will be verified by the tax authorities before being made a part of a tax database. 

The software will also help in the establishment of a pan-India Integrated Management System for income tax collection. Significantly, the tax tracker software is able to find out full information about the income and expenditure of any individual through the internet and payments network. 

The tax tracker software will put India among those few countries that have been able to fully prevent tax evasion. Belgium, Canada and Australia have cut tax evasion by 100% with the help of similar software. 

According to a report, England installed a similar tax tracker software in 2010, with the help of which it has been able to prevent tax evasion to the tune of four billion pounds till date. The report claims that if the tax tracker software had not been used, the English revenue department would not have got a whiff of a large of the four billion pounds saved.