Though it is not mandatory for assesses to use all modules other than the Regn. and Returns, Dept. should insist that officers are bound to use the online applications where the majority of the electronic workflow is distributed within the Dept.officers; for e.g. programs for adjudication and audit versus assessee oriented applications like Refund, Exports, Permissions/Intimations.
On one side, user-officers might have a view that the application software is not user-friendly and the workflow has some hiccups, while on the other hand, the software developer and DG-systems may opine that unless users work on the application and point out the snags or bugs, they cannot improve upon the applications since software developers are not excise officers while excise officers are not software developers.
Since this appears to be a vicious cycle, the initiatives have to be taken from executive commissionerates only, so that the purpose of creation of this huge, prestigious, high-valued ‘e-Gov’ project is not defeated against the lofty intentions and scope for transparency, genuine interface between officers and the assessees, safe storage of all India data in one place, generation of intelligence reports at the top-end instead of existing bottom-level generation, less transaction cost for industry, etc., CBEC needs to give mandate to the field officers to start using all applications.