Open source vs. proprietary software.
Govt of India has reiterated its policy to prefer open source software over proprietary software as part of its Digital India Initiative which is available here. However when it comes to application, different department behave differently. For over ten years income tax department forces citizens of India to use Window and Excel which is a proprietary software of Microsoft. Few years back they brought out an alternative and introduced a Java version of ITR as well. Though it does not work at all, never the less look at the choice. This time they picked Oracle proprietary version of Java. Why not pick open source? No body seems to know anything. Few months back, I had posted a grievance ticket too on their website. The officer who called up, knew nothing and kept on trying to convince me that I should borrow somebody’s window lap top to do the needful. Arrogance in stupidity.
Now I have asked following questions from Government of India under RTI Act
Kindly provide following Information under RTI Act:
1. Who is officer responsible for checking the functioning of ITR 3 Java Version, Please provide his name address and phone Number? If an entire team is responsible please provide the details of team leader.
2.If the aforesaid Officer is in the service of Govt. of India, please provide the name, designation, address of the disciplinary authority over him.
3. What is policy of Income Tax department about using open source software ? If no policy has been formulated please do state so.
4. Why Income Tax department is using and promoting proprietary software produced by Microsoft and Oracle ?
5. Why Java version of software of ITR 3 uses Oracle proprietary version when it is available in open source?
6. When was the ITR 3 Java was approved for making available to taxpayers? Provide date.
7. Who was the officer (provide name, designation, address) who lastly approved the ITR 3 Java for making available to public?
8. Is it correct that Java ITR 3 does not work?
9. If answer to previous question is No then please provide a youtube or other link to a video demonstrating the working of Java ITR 3 ?
10. Which linux version of OS was used to test the working of ITR 3 Java? Please give name and version.
11. Linux Mint, Debian and Ubuntu are three most popular linux distro as per distrowatch.com. Does Income Tax Department differs with the statistics?
12. In case of non working ITR 3 why income tax department officials insist on using Microsoft Excel instead of rectifying the problem?
13. Does Microsoft and Oracle give royalty to Government of India for using and promoting its software? If yes, How much per year?
13. How a person using open source linux and openjfx can file income tax return?
14. Is Income Tax Department working to provide an open source software to file ITR. If yes when can we expect it to roll out please provide expected date?
15. Is Income Tax Department working on an Android or Iphone app to file ITR 3. If yes when can we expect it to roll out please provide expected date?
16. What is the OS used as Base to create Android and IOS ?
Reply has not been received as yet but don’t be to hopeful. In a typical bureaucratic fashion, these question shall rotate in different offices of Income Tax looking for “who done it” till some ass owns up responsibility or till some genius finds a way to nail and out sourcing is made the devil.