Monday, 4 April 2016

Making India a Tax Haven ?

Yesterday's leak / report " PANAMA PAPERS ", revealed that some 500 Indians have stashed away abroad , billions of dollars worth of " Undisclosed Assets " , courtesy Mossack Fonseca of Panama , a money laundering law firm with staff of 600 , operating in 42 countries and having a client-base of 300,000

Now Panama is not the only tax haven on earth

There are others such as Switzerland , Cyprus, British Virgin Islands , the Isle of Man , Guernsey , Jersey etc

Nor is Mossack Fonseca the only money launderer. It is only the 4th biggest

Acting unusually fast , Union Government has set up a multi-agency group to investigate and bring to book , the suspected Indian tax evaders

While wishing all luck to this Group , we cannot overlook the terribly disappointing results of the Supreme Court monitored SIT , during the past 16 months ( viz: discovery of illegal assets worth around Rs 6500 Crore )

Experts are clamoring :

*  Tighten existing laws

*  Make illegal , anonymous investments ( eg: Participatory Notes )

*  Pass law to declare all undisclosed foreign assets as " National Property "


*   If you cannot lick them , join them !

*   Abolish Personal Income Tax

*   And , instead of a Tax Return , every existing tax payer ( approx , 4 cr )
     to file , annual DECLARATION  OF  ASSETS ( Movable and Immovable )

*   Introduce Amnesty Scheme under which , no questions will be asked as
     to the source of any amount of CASH deposited in a person's SPV
     INFRASTRUCTURE account ( at any local Indian bank of his choice )

*   Encourage those 500 Indians to liquidate those Undisclosed Assets
     abroad and deposit that CASH in SPV INFRASTRUCTURE accounts

     Of course , all Indian citizens can do likewise !

*   SPV INFRASTRUCTURE accounts can be used ONLY for investing in
     government approved Infrastructure Funds ( especially funds devoted
     to Renewable Energy / Swatchh Bharat / Health / Education / Homes
     costing less than Rs 5 lakhs , etc )

*   Make India a Tax Haven of sorts !

By no stretch of imagination , I am suggesting that India becomes a destination for parking

 *   Drug Mafia money

*    Terrorist Money

*    Bribe Money for international purchase contracts ( defense etc)

All I am saying is :

*    Take away incentive to evade taxes , thereby stopping future generation
      of Black Money

*    Channel all existing Black Money ( locked up in assets , in India or
      abroad ) into the main stream of economy ( Infrastructure Building )

*    Enable current annual inflow of inward remittances from overseas
      Indians to go up from $ 70 Billion to $ 700 Billion

*    Through rapid development of Infrastructure , generate Self
      Employment for 12 million youth every year

*    Drastically reduce FDI requirement for rapid growth of economy

*    By cutting down on government outlay for Infrastructure , reduce govt
      borrowing from market and consequent debt servicing

*    Raise GDP to 10 % by 2018

It is time to stop tinkering when govt has miserably failed to bring out black money stashed abroad (or locally) , nor succeeded in stopping future generation of Black Money

It was good that the NDA Government raised the expectations of citizens

Now , it is time to deliver on those expectations before Assembly Elections get over in 5 States

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

05  April  2016


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