Bengal Inc gives Budget thumps-up, but disappointed over no corporate relief

Kolkata, Feb 1 : Hailing the interim budget proposals by Union Finance Minister Piyush Goyal as "courageous" , Bengal industrialists on Friday said it would provide a growth stimulus through consumption boost, but at the same time, they were disappointed with absence of any rebate in corporate tax.

"The proposal should augur well for the Indian economy by providing a growth impetus through a boost in consumption as well as an inclusive framework designed to benefit agricultural and rural communities, unorganised sector workers as well the middle class, ITC Chairman Sanjiv Puri said.

The budget presentation has been "significant" though it's an interim Budget, as it presents a roadmap for future India which is poised to become a (Dollar) 5 trillion economy in 5 years and aspires to become a (Dollar) 10 trillion economy in the next 8 years thereafter, said Ambuja Neotia Group Chairman Harshavardhan Neotia.

He said they have by and large kept close to the fiscal deficit target and only allowed a slippage of 0.1 per cent primarily to provide the much required support to small and marginal farmers facing distress.

Bharat Chamber President Sitaram Sharma, stated that budget has trended the expected path of "a populist election year budget promising pro-poor, pro-farmer and pro-'middle class without any direct proposal to expand industrial, manufacturing and economic activities" .

"The absence of any rebate in Corporate Tax does not provide any kind of hope for the Industry as no relevant measure has been proposed in favour of industrial development.

Interest subvention of 2 per cent on loans up to Rs. 1 crore will provide modest relief to the MSMEs as the budget remained silent on stating any means for enhancing capital formation," Sharma said.

From real estate's point of view several noteworthy announcements have been made including no tax on notional rent if you own second house, no TDS on rental income up to Rs 2.4 lakh per year, capital gains tax exemption added to new house under Section 54 within limit of Rs 2 crore, Neotia said.

Terming that the budget as a courageous policy statement of the country's long-term development journey, RP Sanjiv Goenka Group Chairman Sanjiv Goenka said, "The budget this year has shown the courage to attack all the ailments simultaneously."

Despite a large number of welfare programmes for different sections of the society, fiscal deficit has not been allowed to go beyond 3.4 per cent of the GDP, he said, adding that sectors such as infrastructure, FMCG and agriculture are to be benefitted.

Indian Chamber of Commerce President Rudra Chatterjee said, Padhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi promising Rs 6000 per year for farmers owning upto 2 hectares of land wouldA help in providing structured income support to poor landholders to procure seeds, machineries and other input.

The PM Kisan Samman Nidhi programme, the move to set up 1,00,000 digital villages and the increase in allocation to rural infrastructural development will indeed go a long way in enabling empowerment of rural communities, Puri said.

According to Sharma, at a point when the government commits to provide direct income benefit to small and marginal farmers on one hand and waive Income Tax on the other, "it remains quite a concern as to how the fiscal deficit target can be reached in the next fiscal".

"The salaried class have been granted full income tax exemption upto INR 5 lakh pa with higher standard deduction.

We consider it to be a bold step to provide more disposable income in the hands of middle class. Interest subvention and government procurement support is definitely a boost to MSMEs," Chatterjee said.A



Source: IANS