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There has been lot of confusion among various NRI’s and expatriates regarding the disclosure of their overseas accounts in the tax return in India. The Income Tax department in a press release on 24th July,2017 clarified this issue.
It is not mandatory for NRI to disclose the detail of their overseas bank accounts while filing return in India.In case of refund,they should mention the bank account held by them in India.It is only in case when they do not have bank account in India and they have to claim refund,they can mention the detail of their foreign bank account to get the credit of such refund.
Therefore, the NRIs who are not claiming refund or who are claiming refund but having a bank account in India are not required to furnish details of their foreign bank account in the return of income.
The refund generated on processing of return of income is currently credited directly to the bank accounts of taxpayers.Providing the details of bank accounts in which the refund is to be credited is mandatory for direct credit of refund in accounts. So the NRI’s who do not have bank account in India and want to claim refund were facing difficulty in getting refund.This is because ; earlier there was no column in the return form for reporting details of foreign bank account held by NRI’s to claim refund.
Thus the Income Tax department ,on the basis of representations received from the NRI’s ,provided the facility for reporting the foreign bank accounts in the return forms in order to claim refunds.