The Permanent Account Number (PAN) is a number used by the Income Tax Department to identify assessees.
PAN is a 10-digit alphanumeric number that is printed on a laminated card known as a PAN card, along with other details such as the:
- PAN number
- Name of applicant
- Father’s name
- Date of birth
- Passport-size photo
The PAN number replaces the General Index Registrar (GIR) Number which is given to the assessee by an assessing officer and includes the officer’s details.
Under section 139A of the 1961 Income Tax Act, the PAN number is required for individuals:
- Whose total annual income exceeds the amount that is not chargeable under the income tax act
- Whose income through business or another profession exceeds Rs. 5 lakhs
- Who is filing an income tax return