The Great Debate (India)
The annual budget, to be unveiled on Feb. 28, is likely to be the last ahead of the 2014 elections and is perhaps the government’s final chance to announce steps to improve India’s investment climate.
Reuters India asks its readers to share their views on the budget and what they would do if they were in the finance minister’s shoes this year.
What is your budget wishlist for this year? What should the income tax slabs look like? Which investment products should be added or removed from the exemption list?
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Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee will present the annual budget in parliament on March 16.
The Direct Taxes Code (DTC) will be in focus this year. Individuals will seek more clarity on income tax slabs and the investment instruments eligible for tax exemptions. Options like tax-saving funds (ELSS) may no longer be eligible for tax breaks going ahead.
Railways Minister Mamata Banerjee unveiled a populist budget on Friday that froze both passenger and freight fares, disappointing hopes for major reform in a lagging sector key to the country’s infrastructure growth.
For Railway budget highlights, click here
Did the Railway budget meet your expectations? Share your views.
The government has freed up state-subsidised petrol prices and also hiked the prices of diesel, cooking gas and kerosene.
Petrol prices would be market driven and have been raised by 3.50 rupees per litre, while kerosene prices were hiked by 3 rupees a litre. Diesel prices saw an addition of 2 rupees per litre and will be freed up in the future. Cooking gas prices were raised by 35 rupees a cylinder.
The government raised personal income tax slabs for 2010/11, which could result in a net tax saving of 20,000 to 50,000 rupees for those earnings above 300,000 rupees.
Fuel prices — Petrol (by 2.71 rupees) per litre and diesel ( 2.55 rupees a litre) — would be raised from Friday midnight.Are you happy with Budget 2010/11?
Mukherjee’s budget announcements include provisions that will see an increase in the take-home component of an individual’s salary.
By iTrust Financial Advisors (www.iTrust.in)
When it comes to our personal finances, the annual budget is not really worth that much attention. Every year expectations build up that major tectonic shifts will happen that will impact our personal finances.
This year is no different. In fact, the expectations are even higher given the outcome in the general elections. The usual items populate the wish list of changes that are being talked about by pundits.
The task before the finance minister is tricky as the Congress-led government gears up to present the annual budget for 2009-10 on July 6.
Reuters India asks its readers to don the FM’s cap and tell us what shape they would give to the budget to keep a country of over 1 billion people happy.