Editors Column

War on corruption will have to extend far and wide given the innovations that fraudsters make to evade and dodge taxation sleuths. The recent raids that resulted in over Rs 85 crore being ferreted out by the income tax department from private vaults is a grim reminder of the misdeeds of greedy businessmen who break the law with a vengeance for personal gain.

As reported by this paper on Tuesday, the government is considering bringing a comprehensive universal health insurance scheme that will cover vulnerable sections of society and workers from the unorganised sector. The premium would be subsidised by the government depending on the income of the individual concerned.

Time is ripe for the finance minister Arun Jaitley to wind down the steep increase in excise duties on diesel and petrol and pare the spurt in crude prices globally. Financial Chronicle in its January 15 edition reported the possible slash of the excise duty, a likely Rs 2 per litre, that is being considered by the finance ministry on both diesel and petrol.

The Biggest crisis post independence hit the Supreme Court like a tornado last Friday with four senior most judges of Supreme Court breaking ranks with Chief Justice of India. Not only have they differed with the Chief Justice Dipak Misra, but they have also raised several questions that have no easy answers.

Time is ripe for the finance minister Arun Jaitley to wind down the steep increase in excise duties on diesel and petrol and pare the spurt in crude prices globally. Financial Chronicle in its January 15 edition reported the possible slash of the excise duty, a likely Rs 2 per litre, that is being considered by the finance ministry on both diesel and petrol.

The Indian Railways will have to be allowed the flexibility to exploit their full potential for expansion and for moving up the value chain. While high-speed rail networks and bullet trains are dream projects to shake up the system, real reforms will have to happen with the support infrastructure that is virtually reeking and moribund.

Aggressive reforms have become the new political norm. Foreign investment policy has now morphed into a vehicle for economic growth, industrial expansion, improving services and providing mass employment. Otherwise, there’s no reason why this government should announce big bang reforms in foreign investments three weeks ahead of the last full budget in its present term.

Fittingly for a progressive and liberal society, Indians are asking whether those in the LGBT community should be treated as criminals and if Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code that criminalises same sex relations is relevant any more. The three-member Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra has done just that.

It has kind of become an annual ritual that every time budget is approaching and there is any decline in stock markets, it is attributed to the possibility of long term capital gains coming back in equity investment.

Biggest clog in the economic growth wheel is the muted private investments. Though there’s a pick up in the fixed gross capital formation, this is not enough to support the 7 per cent plus growth estimated by finance minister Arun Jaitley in 2017-18 budget speech.

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