Friday, 19 February 2016

A Laughing Matter ?

Last evening, TV channels showed the traditional " Halwa Ceremony " in the Finance Ministry building

With this , the process of preparing / printing of the Union Budget starts

The people involved will stay " imprisoned / incommunicado " till FM completes his budget speech on 29th Feb , to ensure that the budget provisions do not leak out

That does not stop the experts ( - and some non-experts like me ) , to make predictions such as :

*  Revising limits for personal Income Tax slabs

*  Reducing rates for TDS

*  Rationalizing procedures ( assessment scrutiny / tax refunds / tax litigations etc )

*  Launching new Schemes / Funds for savings and investments

*  Increase / decrease of Excise rates on products ( watch out smokers and drinkers ! )

*  Increase / decrease of Import Duties on products to protect local industries / stop dumping from China

*  Recapitalization of Banks ( to write-off Rs 7 lakh*crore of NPA with tax payers money )

*  Write-off DISCOM debts of Rs 4 lakh*crores by passing the buck to State Governments ( tax payer burden ? )

*  Write off loans to farmers - what with elections looming in 5 States ( but I support this  )

News papers report that the Government have received budget suggestions from some 7,000  persons and that , this time around , Prime Minister himself is closely involved in the budget making exercise

Now , with all this obsession / seriousness / paranoia , surely this secrecy surrounding the budget document , cannot be a laughing matter  !

Unless you ask ,

* some foreign software geeks ( eg: Sundar Pichai / Satya Nadela / Vivek Ranadive / Ray Kurzweil etc )

* some Indian BIG  DATA  ANALYTICS geeks ( Mukund / Krishnan / Sanjay / Srikant / Raj / Anurag etc )

Because , if you do , they will laugh and tell you :

"  Just give us the actual budget documents of the past 60 years ( including the accompanying budget speeches ) and we will process these documents using Big Data Analytics software and predict what will be the provisions in the forthcoming budget ( with a probability of 99.7 % - ie ; plus or minus THREE standard deviation )

And then , we will process those past budget speeches with a PARAPHRASING software ( ala ) and give you an advance print-out of Shri Arun Jaitleyji's speech on 29th Feb  "

But of course , Shri Jaitleyji could cheat the PREDICTIVE ANALYTICS , by announcing following unpredictable  :

*   Total Abolition of Personal Income Tax ( or at least , reducing incremental tax rates in each higher slab )

*   Decreasing Incremental Corporate Tax Rates , linked with each higher slab of " Permanent Employee Number "

*   Perpetual Amnesty Scheme for all CASH deposits made in Jan Dhan Accounts , if invested in tax-free Infra SPVs

*   Transfer of 1.8% of GST (from 18%) into buyers' PPF a/c , to ensure all citizens get PPF a/c for tax-free savings

     This amount to be used for paying premium for COMPREHENSIVE HEALTH INSURANCE to cover all illnesses

*   Introduction of plastic Currency Notes of Rs 500/1000, embedded with micro RFID sensors ( stop Black Money )

     Surest way to ensure that almost all payments are made thru official channels !

*   Introduction of BTT ( Bank Transaction Tax ) @ 2% to yield Rs 15 lakh*crore of revenue ( against revenue loss
    of  Rs 2.5 lakh*crores caused by abolishing Personal Income Tax )

Now such announcements , besides being " Unpredictable " , would meet Shri Narendra Modiji's following announcement at Make in India week on 13th Feb  :

There is no time for incremental changes . We want a quantum jump  "

Dear Shri Jaitleyji  :

How about an " Incremental Quantum Jump " by

*   Announcing these unpredictable on 29 Feb 2016

*   Spreading out actual implementation over the next 5 years

That could be the surest way to win 300 seats in 2019 Lok Sabha elections !

Any other budget provision / announcement , would be a laughing matter  

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- / blogs

20  Feb  2016

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