"We want to give the message that they will be received and treated with respect. Internally we have educated all our staff to create a change in attitude.
"We want to get the message to the public that paying taxes is an act worthy of respect and praise (gaurawaneeyai, prashansaneeyai). We are committed to providing a friendly service."
The agency will have exhibitions and open days in Colombo and key cities from November 01 to 08 when a budget for 2013 would be presented.
Samarasekera said seminars will be held at district level from November 01. Handbills will be distributed. People could ask questions and ask for advice. A 'one stop shop' will also allow the public to open a tax file.
Sri Lanka, a country of 20 million people had 897,000 income tax payers, including 530,000 people who paid payroll taxes through pay as you earn (PAYE) deductions made by the employer.
"We are targeting both tax payers and who do not pay taxes," she said.Samarasekera said they hoped to add about 50,000 more to the number.
Officials said there were moves to close tax files of people whose only source of income was salaries employment.
A salaried employee would be taxed from 600,000 rupees and others from earnings of 500,000 rupees a year.
"We have a tax system of self-assessment where you can calculate and submit your own returns," Samarasekera said.
"We hope people will come forward voluntarily to come and pay tax."
She said the agency wanted to stop a perception that a few income tax payers were constantly hounded.
Samarasekera said the highest rate for personal income tax was brought down to 24 percent in the budget 2012. Corporate tax was brought down to 28 percent from 35 percent. Exporters were taxed at 10 percent.
"The tax system was simplified in the last budget and taxes like the debit tax (on financial transactions) were repealed," she said.
The ruling classes in post-feudal states originally imposed income taxes in the style now prevailing as a temporary measure to pay for war in the 18 and 19th centuries but the rates were late ratcheted up as they expanded the state at the expense of citizens.
In earlier ages it was difficult to track income effectively without proper accounting systems.
In 1798 Britain brought income tax at 0.8 percent to 10 percent as a temporary measure to pay for the wars with Napoleon. The tax was repealed in 1816 but later re-imposed.
The United States brought Federal income tax at 3.0 percent in 1862 to cover the cost of its civil war.
The interventionist administration of Franklin Roosevelt which also depreciated the dollar, and made it illegal for American to hold gold in a fascist-style move, pushed up the maximum rate of personal income to an unbelievable 97 percent.
PAYE tax was introduced in Britain in 1944 to fight World War II. But the elected ruling classes of most countries kept taxes going as state expanded after the war.
In Sri Lanka now more than 50 percent of all taxes collected (including customs and excise) go to pay state worker salaries and pensions.
Income tax came to Sri Lanka in 1932. Under Sri Lanka's ancient kings when ordinary citizens had virtually no property rights, the sovereign was entitled to a production share like in other feudal regimes and there was also a tax on water.
Sri Lanka's post independent elected ruling class through an administration that came to power in 1977 passed a fascist-style law freeing themselves and state workers from income tax.
The discriminatory law was changed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, under the watch of the current Treasury secretary P B Jayasundera.
Critics say Sri Lanka's constitution has weak absolute guarantees of equality and unjust 'laws' can be legislated by absolutist parliaments. The ruling classes frequently claim that the parliament is sovereign rather than the citizen.
Meanwhile tax holidays have been given to large corporations.
Sri Lanka has also intervened and imposed multiple rates and given exemptions to cater to special interest groups to undermine value added tax which operates on a simple rule of law of one rate in liberal countries.
Unlike consumption taxes, income taxes undermine investible capital formation hurting employment creation and was opposed by liberal people's representatives in the 18th and 19th century who pressed for its temporary status.
The United Arab Emirates, still a feudal state, which employs people equal to many times the native Emirati population, has no income tax.
The International Monetary Fund has been pressuring Gulf state to start income tax, which the countries have so far successfully resisted allowing citizens and non-citizens more economic freedom in the desert.