This is in reference to the editorial “Monetising that gold” (May 21). It is a welcome step by the government to curb the import of gold, and simultaneously reduce the burden on the current account deficit. Offering a little higher rate of interest and proposing a reduction in the minimum deposit of gold, from 500 g to 30 g, would to some extent make the scheme attractive, but some vital points are yet to be clarified with full transparency, and this needs to be addressed as well. First, the government must look for adequately compensating the gold depositors for the loss of making charges that they incur while getting their gold jewellery melted, as a sizeable chunk of gold stock with households is in the shape of ornaments. Second, the maturity period of gold deposits should be more or less in line with the various maturity buckets of the normal fixed deposits of banks. The rate of interest needs to be attractive and should vary according to the tenure of the deposit. Third, the various tax laws applicable to the source of income for the acquired stock of gold, and the proceeds of the redemption, need more clarity and transparency as well as assurance from the government that no harassment would come from the taxman. Fourth, the compliance of the KYC shouldn’t in any way become a hurdle for the depositors. Fifth, the government should look at enacting laws, without hurting religious sentiments, to push religious institutions and trusts to deposit the gold stocks that they hold, even those that have been donated by devotees, but other than those used to in the performing of the religious rites. Last, but not the least, the government needs to make the scheme more attractive and safe to get the desired results, as people will hesitate to part with their gold jewellery that they have inherited from forefathers due to reasons of sentiment.
AAP is Delhi’s scourge
By electing the AAP to power for next 5 years, the people of Delhi seem to have committed a blunder which is now impossible to correct. The AAP has now started showing its true colours. It appears to behave like a kindergarten class, where the children have suddenly acquired the big responsibility of running their own school. It is no surprise that they have created a mess and their CM is aimlessly firing shots in all directions without caring about the victims. The kind of immaturity and insensitivity it has shown to the public and the utter disrespect it has exhibited to the Constitution of India in the recent events are really mind-blowing. By the time, the people of Delhi awake from this nightmare, they may find themselves back in time by a few years. It is high time that an independent committee conducts a survey on the functioning of the AAP and submits its report to the President of India. The stakes are very high and the capital of a promising country like India should not be allowed to be converted into the stage for a circus. If required, the President should immediately initiate fire-fighting to prevent further spread of the AAP-lit fire.
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