Letters

Letters to the editor dated December 29, 2020

| Updated on December 29, 2020

Tax reforms

This refers to the editorial ‘Failed gambit’ (December 29). The Centre’s Vivad Se Vishwas scheme coming as a cropper is not surprising, given that the majority of tax demands are imaginary and made without due diligence. The salaried class, by default, accounts for a major chunk of direct taxes. Moreover, in a country where litigations drag for years, why would the evaders fall in the trap of such schemes? The 2016 Demonetisation has kept IT officials engaged in unproductive work with little success. They are under perpetual pressure to selectively target the opposition parties and adversaries of the government, the latest victim being grain merchants of Punjab.

The IT department can be more prolific, provided it is granted more autonomy and a carte blanche. Last but not the least, let political parties be subject to IT scrutiny as there are allegations that it is mostly funded with black money. Cosmetic changes in IT return forms and schemes are not sufficient per se.

Deepak Singhal

Noida

Digital financial scams

Apropos ‘Loan apps scams: Experts raise concerns about regulatory gaps being exploited’ (December 29). The warnings of the RBI and other organisations are timely, given the growing incidences of financial cyber scams.

Banks/NBFCs use the services of intermediaries/agents/service providers to market cards and loans. These are aggressive and often use questionable methods. The RBI must issue a white list of intermediaries and mandate regulations for them. Given our poor enforcement culture, we need more monitoring.

V Vijaykumar

Pune

Crop movement

This is with reference to ‘PM: Priority for infrastructure, value addition of farm produce’ (December 29). It is heartening to read that small parcels of pomegranate and eggs were transported by the 100th Kisan Rail. One of the reasons for the pathetic condition of our farmers is the lack of storage facilities. Many a times, our farmers are forced to sell their bumper stock to middle-men at cheaper rates. The government should make a sincere effort in building/encourage farmers to build modern storage system. Similarly, the development of good roads to facilitate the movement of food grains/bumper crop will enable farmers to take their bumper crop to far-off markets and fetch good prices. Finally, the movement of food grains should be made easier by removing unnecessary legislation/bottlenecks.

Veena Shenoy

Thane

Call for truce

Apropos ‘Farmers’ protest takes deeper roots’ (December 29). The reported fact that highways are turning into virtual townships and the neighbourhoods around the Delhi border are pitching in with essentials and facilities for the protesting farmers must serve as a wake-up call for the Centre. One also tends to agree with the view that the impasse does not seem to be ending anytime soon, and if the Centre does not withdraw the three contested farm laws and legalise MSPs on December 30, the extant highly fragile situation may worsen. Wednesday’s meet could turn out to be a game-changer for both the protesting farmers and the Modi government.

Vinayak G

Bengaluru

The turn of the year

The pandemic-stricken 2020 will go down in the annals of history as a year in which a microscopically small virus brought the whole of civilisation to its knees. This year has made us conscious of the fragility and uncertainty of life, and vastly tested our resilience and adaptability. Survival instincts overrode the basic human need of contact with other people.

Visited by the scourge of Covid-19, 2020 denied children the joy of learning, playing and exploring the environment in real-world settings. The year saw pandemic-induced lockdowns, collapse of economies and loss of jobs for millions. It hit the impoverished communities the hardest, as starkly demonstrated by the long march of migrant labourers and pleaded the case for a more equal society. Healthcare workers, sanitary workers, ambulance drivers and vaccine volunteers deserve a special mention for their service and dedication.

Now that the pandemic is showing signs of abatement and the vaccination drives have started in some countries and are soon to start in others, we can hope for a gradual return to normality in 2021.

G David Milton

Maruthancode, TN

Published on December 29, 2020

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