The opinions vary when it comes to P. Chidambaram’s layout of the fiscal year
When you look at P. Chidambaram’s budget plan for the year 2013-2014, it has its positive and negative factors.
For starters, Chidambaram wants to empower the youth by providing funds for education and skills that one needs to maintain a secure future. He also addresses the women and the youth- the two groups that need the most attention. That not all, he taxes the “super rich” and some of the accessories that people use on a daily basis. While these are the positive aspects of the plan, there are just as many loopholes.
Although Chidambaram talks about the youth empowerment, he taxes the same people through the rise in excise duty on products that are used on a daily basis. The demand for SUVs, smartphones, cigarettes, and restaurants is high among today’s generation, and the same have been made pricier. Therefore the youth he supports will in turn be affected by the price hike.
Another loophole that the budget has left unanswered is the economic growth of the nation. The fiscal deficit (excess of government spending, over it’s revenue) is still in question and there were no concrete plans that provided a solution to this issue. In fact, the finance minister was worried as well. The budget of the previous year was exceeded by 67,000 crore rupees and this year it has increased by 16 percent.
This plan has led to higher borrowing and increasing the taxes on the rich and the middle class. Not only does this fiscal deficit put pressure on the economy, it gives no solution for the already existing high inflation rate.
When it comes to women, the finance minister provided 1000 crore rupees for the Nirbhaya fund and Women and Child Development. Throughout the speech he concentrated on women and providing funds for the sectors they want to enter in, be it education, household, or work. But the budget does not mention anything about increasing the safety of women.
Money is not the only thing that is crucial; women of this country need to regain the trust that they’ve lost due to events of past.
Next up were the poor, Direct Benefit Transfer Scheme has been proposed to help 11 beneficiaries with their funds. Scholarships were given to many villages, helping dalit boys and girls with their education. He has also provided the Rashtriya Swasthiya Bima Yojna for poor families like the ones of rickshaw-pullers, auto-drivers, rag pickers, and mine workers. But when it comes to the betterment of the people living on the streets and the ones who do not earn even a day’s wage, there was no fund mentioned.
Despite the shortcomings of the plan, there are plenty of benefits as well. The increase in allocation of funds in the agricultural sector is one of them. Investors and first-time home builders also have a reason to be happy because the taxes have been reduced for their sector. There is a positive side to the increase in taxes as well; it will help the youth with their savings and they will also learn to differentiate between what they need and what they want.
This is what we think, now lets hear what some of the other youngsters have to say about the Budget:
Anamika Chauhan, who works at American Express, worries about the safety of the woman and the taxes on the middle class.[audio:http://theviewspaper.net/wp-content/uploads/anamika.mp3]
Ankit Kashyap, a lecturer at Amity University, believes that the government might achieve the financial goals this year as the Budget concentrates on the economic growth of the country.[audio:http://theviewspaper.net/wp-content/uploads/ankit_kashyap_mp3cut_0.mp3]
Shreya Thakur, an intern at The Hindu, is not happy with the price hike on the different products and accessories that youngsters use on a daily basis.[audio:http://theviewspaper.net/wp-content/uploads/shreya.mp3]
Kshitiz Goliya, a student of Amity University, believes that P. Chidambaram has maintained a balance layout for the budget this year.[audio:http://theviewspaper.net/wp-content/uploads/kshitij.mp3]
Gurveen Kaur, who works as an analyst for an MNC, was very disappointed by this year’s budget especially with the clauses related to education and taxes.[audio:http://theviewspaper.net/wp-content/uploads/gurveen.mp3]
Sudhanshu Vij, a Campaign Manager in an IT firm, believes that the budget was very neutral and not very election-friendly.[audio:http://theviewspaper.net/wp-content/uploads/sudhanshu-vij_0-mp3cut.net_.mp3]
After listening to all the opinions, the budget seems to be quite practical and “safety-first” types. While it focusses more on education, women, and the entire youth of the nation, there are several issues that worries the country.
The tax space hasn’t been widened as only 35 million taxpayers that constitute 3 percent of the entire population, have been taken into consideration. Clearly, the people outside the tax net have not been identified.
And with the next year election in mind, this year’s budget keeps it safe and does not make bold promises. But it’s not that bad because it does look at the bigger picture.
What do you think?
The Viewspaper Team
Image Source [http://images.cxotoday.com/2013/02/budget_2013_DEcmu.jpg]