The Indian economy has picked up in the last couple of months and everyone is expectantly looking forward to this year’s budget, which can provide the much needed fillip to take the country towards positive GDP growth rates.
Last couple of years has been pretty tough for the industry which was further enhanced with the lockdown effect post COVID. Now that some little green shoots can be seen, it is an opportune moment for the government to take advantage through its policy announcements in the Budget.
According to Salil Bhandari founder of BGJC associates a Delhi based CA firm, “This is the time to give few but large incentives in the budget to industry and tax payers. This will build the much-needed momentum for the economy to bounce back.” Bhandari is a former President of the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI) and is now a Member of National Executive of the FICCI.
Some of the initiatives suggested by him include:
- Standard deduction for salaried employees should be increased to at least Rs 1 lac.
- To give impetus to MSME, a special Allowance for investments made in Plant and machinery of 33% should be brought in for the period 1 April 2020 to 1 April 2023.
- Employment generation. For Section 80JJAA the salary limit for individuals is fixed as Rs.25,000 per month per employees may be increased to Rs.50,000 per month per employee and the limit of 30% additional deduction may be increased to 100% in case the employees covered under minimum wages and in case of other employees the limit may be increased to 50%.
- The Senior Citizens benefit should be increased both in terms of exemption and medical benefits.
- For senior citizens all medical expenses upto Rs 1 lac should be allowed as deduction subject to bills from hospitals, nursing homes, doctors with PAN, chemist shops registered under GST.
- 100 % deduction on medical insurance of any amount
- Income upto Rs 10 lacs should not be taxable.
- Education allowance per child should be increased to Rs 50,000 per annum.
- With faceless assessments and the covid experience, the government should fix accountability of tax department personnel who are responsible for things like rectification, delay in rectification, delay in refunds etc. No coercive action should be taken without going through the merit of the case.