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Lighten taxes

The news item “Don’t want to burden salaried
class: FM
” (November 23) gives an appropriate interpretation of the national tax. With handsome IT having been imposed, especially on employees, ethics demand the residual amount should be free from all tax encumbrances. But unfortunately, an average citizen keeps paying taxes repeatedly in various forms such as manufacturing tax, excise, VAT, luxury tax, road tax, service tax etc on the consumption of every product/service. This multiplicity of taxation costs almost 60% of one's income. If income tax imposition is dispensed with and luxury tax increased, the government will have better income because apart from saving expenditure on maintaining IT offices and employees, by the resultant increase in the purchasing power of citizens, taxation will also rise and the standard of public living go up. The increased luxury tax will bite only the 'haves'. Instead of crushing the common citizen, especially employees who neither have escape nor avenues to maximise their income, the government ought to adopt a rationale approach.

MPS Chadha, Mohali

Simplify tax refunds

Apropos the news report “Jaitley not in favour of burdening salaried, middle class with taxes”, administration-compliance of the income tax on returns filed must be timely, simple and people-friendly. Either refunds are not issued in time or wrongly and illegally adjusted, with demands lying in the files of the Income Tax Department only as they are never sent to the assessee concerned.

Though intimation for such an adjustment is sent and the assessee is given 30 days to raise objections, this time is not sufficient. First, the assessee has to get the demand copy lying with IT Department and then verify whether the demand is right or wrong. If wrong, he has to raise an objection by an application for rectification of mistake to assessing officer concerned and get its final order. All this consumes a lot of time, at times months.

Therefore, the demand details of the assessment order must be sent along with the intimation of adjustment against refunds due to avoid this harassment of taxpayers.

M Kumar, via email

Salaried burdened

“I don't want to burden the salaried class,” stated the FM on November 22. It is the salaried class and pensioners who pay the maximum direct taxes. While other professionals and entrepreneurs cleverly conceal their income, the salaried people have no such avenues as their tax is deducted at source. Therefore, the maximun benefit must be extended to this class. A fair proposal would be to increase the IT exemption limit to Rs 5 lakh for people up to 59 years of age; Rs 7 lakh from 60-64 years; Rs 10 lakh from 65-70; no tax after 70. It must be appreciated that expenses rise drastically as one grows older. Hence, in the absence of any social security offered by the government to the aged, they have to sustain themselves. The FM should be considerate to the salaried classs and pensioners so that they can lead a secure and better quality of life.


IT & black money

One of the reasons of black money generation is the high income tax rates. Though earned legitimately, the money on which tax is not paid, amounts to black money. The income tax rates should not be more than 10%. This will encourage people to abide by the rules and pay taxes. At present, only the salaried class is bound to pay income tax and many among them do not declare their income from other sources.

IPS Anand, Chandigarh

Subsidy for MPs

The Finance Minister's comment of taking back LPG subsidy for rich is commendble, but it would be good to start from the Parliament canteen which still gives a subsidised vegetarian thali for a mere Rs 12.

Vijay Karan, Chandigarh

Quota & income

The Finance Minister is considering to stop subsidy on LPG to the taxpayers. There was also a statement about withdrawal of PDS supplies from taxpayers and pensioners. These moves are good for development. It is also high time that changes be brought in the caste-based reservation system. Stop reservations to all those who come under the tax slab and gradually replace it with quota on financial condition. Also, the amount of pension should be the base and not merely the status of being a pensioner as many old pensioners and widows are getting very meagre amounts.

Lt-Col Ramesh Walia (Retd), Kangra

Burning problem

"A burning problem: Getting rid of stubble" (November 19) is timely as millions of people suffer from various medical problems because of immense pollution caused by stubble burning. If the ban is strictly enforced the farmers will be both forced and motivated to seek cost-effective alternatives. Now that the farmers know that weak, corruption-riddled and votebank-influenced governments are not going to take any action, they go easy on adopting other alternatives. The Pollution Control Board has failed to tackle this menace and as usual passes the buck on other law enforcing agencies. Strict action should be initiated against the offenders and nobody should be allowed to play with the health of common people.

Dr Vitull K. Gupta Bathinda

School a nuisance

Residents of Urban Estate, Phase II, Patiala, are upset over the building of a school in the middle of the residential area. No consent of the local residents was taken while altering the master plan for building the higher secondary level school (earlier, a primary school site). This is unjust and against the norms. The school has been built on a 1.5-acre land, which is against the CBSE norms of affiliation of 2-acre area and the Punjab Government norm of 2.5-acre area. The site for a higher secondary school already exists in the locality, making this permission for upgradation absurd.

Ever since the school came into existence, it has become a source of nuisance. Problems like noise and vehicular pollution, buses using pressure horns, visitors' vehicles parked outside houses, women uncomfortable while going out because of dozens of drivers standing outside the whole day have become commonplace.

Samar Sandhu, Patiala

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