Moving beyond text-based literature, awareness seminars, and workshops, the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has adopted a novel approach to spread tax literacy through ‘learn by play’ methods.
The CBDT has brought out products to introduce concepts related to taxation, often perceived to be complicated, to high school students through board Games, puzzles, and comics.
Nirmala Sitharaman Started the Initiative
Kickstarting the initiative, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman launched a series of communication and outreach products. This aimed at spreading financial and tax awareness at the Closing Ceremony of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav Iconic Week in Panaji last evening.
She termed the next 25 years as Amrit Kaal. She said the youth would play a major role in shaping New India. Sitharaman also distributed the first sets of the games to select school students present at the event.
The novel products brought out by the CBDT are:
Snakes, Ladders, and Taxes: This board game introduces good and bad habits in respect of tax events and financial transactions. The game is simple, intuitive competitive; and educational with good habits rewarded through ladders and bad habits penalized by snakes;
Building India: This collaborative game introduces the concept of the importance of paying taxes through the use of 50 memory cards based on infrastructure and social projects. The game aims to convey the message that taxation is collaborative in nature and not competitive.
India Gate – 3D Puzzle: This game consists of 3. Q pieces, each containing information about various terms and concepts related to taxation. The pieces when connected together will build a 3-dimensional structure of India Gate conveying the message that taxes build India
Digital Comic Books – The Income Tax Department has collaborated with Lot Pot Comics to spread awareness about concepts of income and taxation among children and young adults. The messages are given by the immensely popular cartoon characters of Motu-Patlu, through their bone-tickling dialogues.
These products will initially distributed to schools through the network of Income Tax offices spread across India. A proposal to distribute these games through bookstores also worked out.