Budget 2017: 5 key tax announcements Arun Jaitley made in budget speech
BT Online February 1, 2017
To compensate for the hardships endured by the middle class during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's demonetisation drive, the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in his budget speech on Wednesday announced a 5 per cent reduction in the existing rate of taxation for individuals with income between Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs 5 lakh from the existing 10 per cent.
While beginning the tax part of his speech, the finance minister emphasised that the direct tax collection in the country is not commensurate with income and expenditure pattern. Of 3.7 crore individuals who filed tax returns in 2015-16, 99 lakh showed income below exemption limit, the Finance minister said in his speech.
The Finance Minister also reduced basic customs duty on LNG from 5% to 2.5% in 2017-18. To tackle the menace of black money in funding of political parties, FM Arun Jaitley announced that Income Tax Act will be amended so that no transaction above Rs 3 lakh is be permitted in cash.
The finance minister said that the net revenue loss on the tax exemption would be at Rs 20,000 crore. Goods and Service Tax (GST), which will subsume central and state levies like excise duty, service tax and VAT, is scheduled to be rolled out from July 1. The tax slabs decided for the GST are 5, 12, 18 and 28 per cent.