SME Times News Bureau | 06 Sep, 2019
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday said that
there would be no any scaling down of the social sector spending due to any
possible shortfall of tax revenues.
"Any tax collection shortfall will not affect commitments made to social
sector spending", she said after interaction with industry and tax
officials here in her continuing series of meetings with stakeholders.
Her statement comes amid speculation that some welfare schemes may be axed due
to possible shortfall in revenues due to poor tax collections. The Government
has many welfare projects on hand such as giving income support to farmers
among others. The gross Goods and Services Tax (GST) collection in August, 2019
stood at Rs 98,202 crore.
On the usage of the RBI's Rs 1.76 lakh crore surplus transfer to the government
which could be utilised for social welfare projects, she said the government
has not decided how to use the funds.
Earlier she said wealth creators and job creators have to be facilitated,
hinting at a better approach towards the assesses.
"We have given a message to the tax officer that while performing duties,
do not overreach... assessess are well within their right to treat a tax notice
without DIN (Document Identification Number), she said, adding the government
is engaging with tax stakeholders to understand and address any issues they
face. The tax department has to promote faceless scrutiny. It will reduce tax
harassment from Vijay Dashmi day", the FM said.
She further stressed that identification for audits will be faceless,
randomised and use of technology will make assessment process a lot more
On the steps to check slowdown, the FM said the government has addressed
apprehensions of manufacturers and consumers. She said many of the government
responses are in step with recommendations made by stakeholders. "We are
looking at challenges the various sectors are facing, we are speaking to
stakeholders and taking a considered view on the response we can give to
various challenges. We are continuously engaging with all sectors to assess
challenges and formulate responses", she said.
In the last few days , Sitharaman has announced a slew of measures, including
withdrawal of FPI surcharge, merger of banks among the key steps to boost the
economy and take the industry out of slowdown.