Two alumni of the Master of International Development Policy (MIDP) program at Duke’s Sanford School of Public Policy recently released a book, Essays on Tax Policy and Practice.

The book is a collection of 13 essays on contemporary and contentious taxation issues in India, including anti-avoidance rules, taxation of business profits, international exchange of tax-related information and mechanisms for resolving international tax disputes.

Sanjiv Shankar and Nandita Kanchan, both 2013 graduates of the MIDP with a specialization in international taxation, currently work for the Government of India. Shankar is director of the Department of Personnel and Training and Kanchan has served more than 20 years in the Income Tax Department. Currently, they are both based in New Delhi and belong to the Indian Revenue Service (IRS) and are ranked as Commissioners of Income Tax.    

“These essays, which are based on studies undertaken at Sanford, offer policy insights for developing countries in general and India in particular,” Shankar said. “The idea in writing the book was to give readers an insight into the policy behind tax legislation, as it seeks to bridge the gap between the tax policy and its implementation.”

Sri Yashwant Sinha, India’s former minister of finance and external affairs, and Sri Ratneshwar Prasad, former chairman of CBDT and member of the Competition Commission of India, wrote the foreword. Sinha writes that the authors “have not only put in hard and painstaking work in writing on this complex subject [but] have also shown a deep understanding of the subject” that he believes will benefit policy makers in India.

The book is published by Synergy Books India, a unit of Bookwell Publications, New Delhi.

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