The Central Board of Direct Taxes on Monday said that the number of Income Tax Returns filed in 2017 had risen by at least 25%. The department attributed this increase to the demonetisation drive, claiming it had curbed the circulation of black money.

“The growth in returns filed by individuals is 25.3%,” the CBDT said, adding that they had received more than 2.79 crore returns till August 5, the last day to file them. Overall, more than 2.82 crore ITRs were filed, which is a 24.7% increase as compared to 9.9% in 2016.

“This clearly shows that a substantial number of new taxpayers were brought into the tax net subsequent to demonetisation.” the CBDT said.

There was also a rise in the amount of direct tax collected in 2017. Advance tax collections of personal income tax saw 41.97% growth as compared to that the last financial year. “Personal income tax under self-assessment tax grew at 34.25% over the corresponding period in FY 2016-17,” the CBDT said.