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Pre-Budget Interview

Sonakshi 
on 06 July 2009

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Interview with Mr. CA Sudhir Halakhandi

CA Sudhir Halakhandi in an Exclusive Talk with CA Nikita Jain for CAclubindia.com

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi having more than 500 Tax Articles to his credit in almost all the top tax journals of the country covering Both direct and indirect Taxes – Income Tax, VAT and Service Tax. The rarest of the rare talent having command on both direct and indirect taxes.

 

We have made him Caclubindia featured personality in JAN 2009. He is on board with us since Nov'08 but in a short span of few months he has made a remarkable contribution to the community. The students love him for his encouragement, professionals respect him for his opinion and we adore him for being with us...

 

Today we have with us CA SUDHIR HALAKHANDI, eminent Tax expert and columnist with me and since we have already seen his Budget blog, comments and articles hence I am with him with some of the questions to be asked from him for Caclubindia.com. Since he is very much busy for his pre-budget schedule hence we are straight forward going for our questions. – CA NIKITA JAIN

CA Nikita Jain

Good Morning Sudhir Sir! So you are very much busy in pre-budget contributions from your side. Now please tell us what are your major expectations?

 CA Sudhir Halakhandi

The political situation has got the stability first time since last 10 years or more and further the Government has almost clear mandate so my expectation is that the tax reforms will get the speed and further there will be a clear indication from the side of the Finance Minister that simplification is also on his top priority.

 

CA Nikita Jain

How the recession will affect the forthcoming Budget?

 CA Sudhir Halakhandi

Nikita, See the signs of revival from recession are now very clear hence recession will have very little effect on this Budget. To boost the economy further the recently reduced rate of central excise and service tax should be maintained.

CA Nikita Jain

Mr. Pranab Mukherjee was the Finance Minister in 1982 also and now he is again after more than 25 years. Is it possible for him to deliver the good in the totally changed financial, technical and economic atmosphere.

 CA Sudhir Halakhandi

Yes, Nikita this seems to be a amazing situation for all the fields except politics and you know politicians specially politicians of this south Asian area of the world have the special capacity . Mr. Mukherjee is also a seasoned politicians and he had been categorized as the Best finance minister of the world by a world class Economic Journal during his first inning as FM.

Further you know he was not out of politics in those years and hold many important posts and also see here there is perfect system in India in the form of a Bureaucratic system to support the Finance Minister.

In my opinion in the present political and economic situation a seasoned Finance Minister Like Mr. Mukherjee is the need of the hour.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

But Sudhir Sir! Why not Dr. Manmohan singh or Mr. Chidambaram?

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

See Nikita , Dr. Singh is the PM so we should not think about him to be FM and regarding Mr. Chidambaram my opinion is that this is not the time for experiments.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

What do you mean Sudhir Sir??

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

Yes, Mr. Chidambaram love experiments. See taxability of gifts, Banking cash transaction tax, Fringe benefit tax are the experiments of Mr. Chidambaram. But at present the trade and industry require some stability on taxation both direct and indirect front so my preference is Mr. Mukherjee.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

Now what do you expect on taxable limit?

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

I think there will be no change or very minor or slight change may be there because the last budget has raised the Limit sufficiently. So I think there is no hope on this side and further we should not have any expectation on tax rate also.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

And tax on agricultural Income Sir?

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

See Nikita at present there is no possibility of taxing the agricultural income though the time has come to think on this front also but at present this is state subject and to be taxed under central government it will require the constitutional amendment. But in my opinion a debate on this matter should be started now at least to tax the farm income.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

Sudhir Sir! Mr. P. Chidambaram has talked about GST in his last continuous 3 Budgets and I think you are connected with concept since then and I read you’re much talked article “Goods and Service tax- An introductory study in ICAI CA Journal. Sir 2010 is the next year now what is your opinion?

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

In my opinion there is a will in the present Government to introduce GST in 2010 but still there is no consensus in with the states so there is a possibility of it’s time being postponement but sooner or later it will be introduced and now it is now only matter of time.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

There is a talk that Standard deduction should again be introduced for the salaried employees. What is you expectation sir?

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

I think this demand of the salaried taxpayers should be accepted and in my opinion the FM will accept this demand. See Nikita, there was a reason for giving the standard deduction and the reason was that the salaried employees has to make and bear certain expenditure for earning the salary and the reason still exist hence for the same reason it should be introduced again.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

I read somewhere you wrote that TDS provisions are becoming tough and tough. Now what do you expect on this front from Mr. Mukherjee.

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

Yes Nikita since I am attached with the ground realities hence I know the difficulties faced by the common and majority of taxpayers on this front. The law makers are making the procedures tough and tough on this front without knowing the ground level realities and difficulties of the taxpayers. Mr. Mukherjee is the seasoned politician and if he understands the difficulty of taxpayers on this front then there will be a relief.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

The ITRs are too big so it their any suggestion from your side on this issue.

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

Yes, the returns forms are too big and complex and here the declared policy of simplification is violated. The maximum size of the return form should be 4 or 5 pages and lot of experts has suggested this to the Government.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

Do you feel that there is a need to make changes in taxation law every year.

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

Yes Nikita, this seems to be an interesting question and in my opinion there is no need. We should have taxation amendment once in five years.

 

 

 

 

CA Nikita Jain

OK sir, Nice talking to you and I am very much thankful to you for sharing so much with Caclubindia . Have a nice day sir.

 

CA Sudhir Halakhandi

Thanks Nikita and good wishes to all the members of CAclubindia.

 




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