Wake up Mr. Finance Minister…
It is almost three years since Modi Government sat in the saddle. The people of India have a lot of expectations from this Government as compared to the previous ones and the whopping majority.
I will, no doubt, give a thumbs up for a number of initiatives the Government has undertaken, viz.,
1) Convincing the upper and higher middle class to give up the subsidy on LPG and making this facility available to poor families
2) Tax reform in the form of GST
3) Swacha Bharath Abhiyaan
4) Jan Dhan Yojana
5) Prime Minister’s Pension and Insurance schemes for the poor
6) Demonetisation drive – a bold step, but, ended up with utter confusion in implementation and totally failure
On the direct tax front, the Government is still sleeping on the suggestions for reforms and continue to trouble the honest tax payer while allowing the tax evaders to enjoy life as usual.
The long awaited and deliberated Direct Tax Code is nowhere to be seen.
In bringing the tax evaders into the tax net, it is clear that the Government lacks sincerity for obvious reasons.
Though the Modi Government pats its back for scrapping age-old, obsolete Acts/Rules, it has done nothing to do the same with the age-old direct tax rules. As a salaried tax payer, the immediate ones that comes to my mind are (1) Tax exemption on Education Allowance of Rs.100/- per month per child, for 2 children, (2) Leave Travel Allowance rules restricting the exemption to domestic travel expenses and only for TRAVEL and that too, twice in a block of four years, (3) Medical allowance up to a maximum of Rs.15000/- pa, (4) tax on Gratuity and Leave Encashment on retirement, etc.
The Government’s treatment of salaried class has always been step-motherly and it continues to be so in comparison to self-employed professionals.
It is high time that the Government realise that its own policies are the biggest culprits in inducing the general public to evade tax. Let the Government opens up itself and be transparent and the common man will be more than happy to part with his hard-earned money as tax.