News Update

Taxes are best collected through entrepreneurial freedom: Punjab FM

By TIOL News Service

CHANDIGARH, SEPT 28, 2020: MR Manpreet Singh Badal who took oath as one of the Ministers in the New Cabinet for Punjab, is back to his favourite charge - Finance, Taxation, Governance Reforms & programme Implementation. While assuming his charge, he said, "For me it is a matter of exceptional pride that I assume this charge on the birth anniversary of Shahid Bhagat Singh. While my new responsibilities provide some continuity to my previous position, I shall now have the added responsibility of commercial taxation. i.e. GST,VAT and other misc. levies on Petroleum Products.

We have done well, rather exceptionally well, so far despite a near bankrupt treasury that we inherited in 2017 from the previous regime. However for a Finance Minister the situation is always challenging, never providing a minute of rest or comfort."

Mr Badal pointed out that he looks at taxes as an integral part of the overall policy of the government to usher progress, economic development, social well-being, employment generation equity and justice. Taxes, seen merely a revenue requirement, can cause imbalances in overall priorities. He wishes to maintain this delicate balance while taking future policy decisions.

He has proposed that over the next fortnight he would meet all major sections of our trade industry, commerce and service sector and ensure that all their legitimate concerns are understood and, wherever needed, brought before the GST Council or other appropriate authorities for appropriate resolution. He further added, "I don't wish to see a situation where any section of our business feels that its concerns have not reached the right person in policy making. Those that need actions at my end will be settled with urgency and concern."

He further underlined that the taxes are best collected through business progress and entrepreneurial freedom. Contact with businesses for tax enforcement should be minimal. The State already has state-of-the-art IT infrastructure that has automated most of the processes. "We shall strengthen these further to make tax collection and scrutiny processes remote, faceless and trouble free," he added.