Couple of points I would like to implemented in this budget are
Cut government subsidy - currently standing at 2.2% of Indias GDP, government subsidy is probably the biggest unwanted legacy the UPA government has left the country. But it is good to see that the current government is not just considering it as an elephant in the room but are trying to take active steps in rectifying the issue. The BJPs statement about the government fuel policy including a diesel component lends credence that the budget will contain some steps to curb the $24 billion subsidy bill thereby shrinking the budget deficit. This would free up the funds to boost investment in sectors that create more jobs.
Taxes At a corporate level, my biggest hope from the budget is that the retrospective tax introduced by the previous government gets scrapped. We need to have a stable Tax Policy and cannot be changed to suit the whims of few individuals. While this would lead to a huge hit on the government fiscals, it would send out a strong statement of intent to companies and corporations that the government means business when it says it will make the climate conducive for investment. I would also like to see the service tax imposed on education fees to be rescinded. On a personal front, I would like to see the minimum personal tax slab increased from the current level of 2 lakh rupees to 3-4 lakh rupees as well as the tax exemption increase from to 2 lakh rupees. While this would not affect me over the next one year (with zero income and climbing costs), it certainly would let me look forward to start earning and saving more a year from now when I graduate.
I am just one of millions waiting for the budget with bated breath. If the NDA government can walk the talk and take the hard measures they have promised, it would go a long way in making general public believe that ache din aane wale hain.
By Prasanth Chandramouli, PGP Class of 2015, Indian School of Business (ISB)