Size and benefits
This refers to the report “Most salaried Indians have no social security benefits” (March 15). The willingness of organisations to provide social security benefits depends on their employee size.
Bigger firms, conscious of their public image, spend more on employee welfare. Small firms’ staff rarely get media attention.
However, favourable public perception is important for large units for attracting capital and talent. Also enforcement of laws play a key role in ensuring employee welfare.
Widen the tax net
This refers to ‘Individual taxpayers in 30% slab surged by over 25% in AY23’ (March 15). The Union Minister of State for Finance said in the Lok Sabha, that the number of individual taxpayers falling in the 30 per cent tax slab surged to over 60.81 lakh in AY 2022-23, a rise of over 25 per cent. This is no mean achievement. Despite the number of tax payers rising to 7.57 crore during AY 23, this still too small a number in a country of 140 crore people. This only underscores the need to widen the tax base.
The ‘under reporting’ of incomes is also a major problem.
This refers to the editorial “Inflation bugbear” (March 15). Albeit the decline in the wholesale price index to 3.85%, the price level of daily consumable items is still at an elevated level as per the Consumer Price Index of 6.44 %, which is beyond the targeted rate of 4-6% stipulated by the RBI.
The increasing unemployment rate and lending rates are hurting the growth of investment, besides crippling the budget of families. The disruptions in production and the supply of goods are creating scarcity and pushing up prices. It is crucial to address the causes that are contributing to the unemployment and flow of income.
The high lending rates on borrowings for personal and housing loans are taking away a sizable portion of the income. Further hikes in policy rates will hurt investment. The increasing interest rates across the globe are damaging economic activities and leading to a recession.
Rather than synchronising with what other central banks are implementing to tame inflation, the Reserve Bank must implement a policy rate which induces investment as well as keep inflation under control.
The collapse of two US banks in quick succession does not bode well for the global financial ecosystem.
One also wonders how many other US banks are on the verge of collapse. India is no stranger to such bank debacles and is an eye opener for RBI which has proved to be reactive in its approach in the past.
The good part of the entire sordid saga is that the US government has come out to safeguard the interests of bonafide stakeholders.
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