Please refer to “Tax - New Three-page Income-tax Return Forms” (Moneylife, 25 June 2015). The income-tax return (ITR) forms have been revised after public protest on lengthy forms and cumbersome information sought earlier. It is yet to be seen how these forms are simplified; as on date, these are not notified. It is hoped that the new ITR won’t require assistance from professionals to fill up. It would have been better still if the one-page saral form for all taxpayers had been re-introduced. Details of expenditure and all bank details, etc, should have been avoided altogether as these are matters of expenditure tax (which has been abolished). For foreign income in foreign banks and properties outside India, the government should simply ask us to declare, if it is taxable and, if not, let the figures of exempted foreign income be declared in exempted income column.
The full details can be safely asked only in select cases of scrutiny, and not in ITRs. To safeguard against non-declaration of income, the declaration in the form—that all income is truly reflected in the return—is sufficient to prosecute, if not true. The income-tax department has already collected information relating to various financial transactions through various concerned organisations and departments (TDS/ TCS/AIR). The rest of the information must also form the part of Form 26AS and the necessary changes must be made in the existing Form 26AS for this purpose. The system on e-filing of pre-filled I-T forms—as per information with the income-tax department—must continue not only for TDS (Form 26AS) but also for all information which I-T department has obtained from various sources. This is important so that no taxpayer has a chance of non-declaration of such income like on sale of properties, etc.
Mahesh Kapasi, by email
Okada Finger Pressure Therapy
This is with regard to “‘Scientific’ Mumbo-Jumbo” (Moneylife, 11 June 2015) by Prof BM Hegde. My guru, Mokichi Okada (of Japan), had said all this about Western medicine way back in the 1920s, when he discovered an alternative means of healing (Okada finger pressure therapy or Jo Rei).
Suchindranath Aiyer S, online comment
Toothpaste for Children
This is with regard to “Science and Business Reality” by Prof BM Hegde. Please name a few toothpastes for children and for adults without Triclosan.
Narendra Doshi, online comment
Bail is the Rule!
This is with regard to “Bail, not Jail” by Bapoo Malcolm. It was Justice VR Krishna Iyer who had laid down very important principles, like ‘jail is the exception, and bail is the rule’, decades ago and, in his judgements, he gave a very strong human touch to criminal law.
Mohan, online comment
Investors Must Show Patience
This is with regard to “Fortnightly Market View: Disconnected from Modi” by Debashis Basu. The stock market movement is largely dictated by three factors—sentiment, liquidity and fundamentals. Narendra Modi’s election victory suddenly improved the sentiment resulting in rise in stock markets. But, the fundamentals of the economy reflected in the financials of the companies, cannot be ignored for long. The steps taken by this government will take time to show results. Investors must show patience and not become greedy.
Rajat Dhar, online comment
Criminals Will Always Exist!
This is with regard to “What the Essar Diaries Mean” by Sucheta Dalal. Clearly, the mistake is with the Rserve Bank of India (RBI) which appears grossly inefficient and corrupt too.
Essar, Ispat, United Breweries, Sahara, etc, have taken advantage of the system, while being aided, abetted by corrupt bank chairmen, who have gone unchecked by RBI. If governor Dr Raghuram Rajan spells out a policy of sacking of bank chairmen who allow such bad debts, these industrialists will not have the courage to cheat the system. Why is RBI keeping quiet? Controlling inflation is not the only job of RBI. The amounts owed by these defaulters, if recovered, will fund agriculture and, perhaps, we can write off the entire agricultural loans of drought-hit states. Maybe, this will also help reduce interest rates and rein inflation. Perhaps, RBI does not want to antagonise these defaulters and the powers that be. In fact, our focus is to reform RBI. Criminals will always exist. If we can set up a good policing system, we can avoid such crimes.
S Padmanabhan, online comment
Issue to Die a Natural Death?
This is with regard to “Manufactured Hysteria over Maggi” by Sucheta Dalal. Sure. Succinctly summarised. I am wondering why the government did not take cognizance of this revelation when the product was launched? Is it the laxity of the regulator over the past three decades? Or, is it that the firm refused to heed the advice of the regulator? Why is it that regular roadside foodstalls, or even budget hotels/restaurants, are spared? Why can’t the regulator ensure that safe and healthy food is provided to the consumer by any source: be it street-side vendor or packaged food industry or ‘licensed’ restaurants? Again, this whole issue is going to die a natural death, as we have seen in earlier instances.
Srinivas, online comment
Really, Useful Article
This is with regard to “How to Use Your Smartphone, Smartly” by Yogesh Sapkale. This is a really, useful article. Most of the information was new for me.
I would like to thank the author and Moneylife.
Kaviraj B Patil, online comment
Problem with Stocks
This is with regard to “Tough Job for Fund Managers” by R Balakrishnan. I think, the problem with stocks is this: Most of us are under-qualified, with not enough time to gain chartered accountant-level knowledge of finance. We are not able to acquire the in-depth research skills needed to locate great stocks. Many people owning stocks reflect the same ‘herd’ mentality: buy the most popular/talked-about stocks.
Anand Vaidya, online comment
This is with regard to “Dr Subramanian Swamy on black money, hawala, Rafale, taxes and politics”. As Dr Swamy says, he is not part of the government. If he were, the replies would have certainly been very different.
As regards cooperative banks, they are not the source of black money. All the banks work under dual regulation: SEBI, RBI and even the third one, GOI insofar as public sector banks and foreign banks are concerned. The pity is that for cooperatives, the regulators do not understand their domains. The registrar of cooperatives is not accountable for the regulations he is expected to administer which he hardly knows. By the time he gets to know them, he gets transferred.
Governance and management are issues in cooperatives and sensible legislative interventions are not acceptable to any body politic in this country. Cooperatives are in irremediable situation.
The Modi government should do skill-building and knowledge-building of politicians. Simultaneously, skill-building of youth should be taken as top priority. The recent move to give away Rs25 crore as MPLAD fund is the surest route for black money accumulation in this country.
B Yerram Raju
Review The Approach!
This is with regard to “Aadhaar is a disaster, says Dr Swamy”. Aadhaar, like the New (National) Pension System came in without any legal backing; hung around with support from certain vested interests; and, now, is being supported by the government. This is a government which dared to dismantle the Planning Commission. It should have reviewed the approach to Aadhaar and NPS.