NEW DELHI: Industry lobby groups CII and PHDCCI have demanded personal tax benefits for the middle class, with Ficci backing a simplification in the direct tax regime in the budget.
During a meeting with revenue secretary Sanjay Malhotra, CII president Sanjiv Puri pitched for marginal relief in tax for taxable income up to Rs 20 lakh, while seeking lower excise on petrol and diesel, arguing that pump prices in Delhi have fallen Rs 1.8 a litre, although Brent was 40% down.
Besides, he suggested an increase in the annual PM-KISAN payout to Rs 8,000 from the current Rs 6,000, while also proposing an increase in minimum wages under MGNREGA on the grounds that the two moves will increase the disposable income and spur consumption.
“The middle class is currently taxed at a rate of 30%, leaving them with little disposable income for savings and other needs. We suggested that the 30% tax slab should apply only to incomes above Rs 40 lakh,” Mukul Bagla, chair of the direct taxes committee at PHDCCI, was quoted as saying by a news agency.
Ficci has recommended simplification of the capital gains tax structure by rationalising regime in two or three broad buckets of different types of assets, holding period for such assets to turn long term, indexation benefit eligibility. It suggested that assets should be put in three buckets – equity instruments, debt and other assets should – and the rates for long-term and short-term gains should be stipulated, without making a distinction between residents and non-residents.
“Our suggestions have focused on maintaining the growth momentum, while seeking simplification for ease of doing business and reducing litigation. Where litigation has started, the idea should be to find a workable solution for everyone,” said Subhrakant Panda, the chamber’s immediate past president.



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