Centre blinks: Jaitley rolls back controversial EPF tax proposal

Centre blinks: Jaitley rolls back controversial EPF tax proposal: But govt will have to amend Finance Bill, says former Lok Sabha Secretary-General


March 9, 2016
Towards a pensioned society
This refers to the report “Centre blinks: Jaitley rolls back controversial EPF tax proposal” (The Hindu Business Line, March 9).  While making a statement withdrawing paragraphs 138 and 139 of his budget speech, FM mentioned that the government would like to do a comprehensive review of this proposal (mentioned in
paragraphs 138 and 139). In a way, the unusual way in which the proposal has been rolled back denied an opportunity for parliament to take an informed view on the government’s plan to ‘move towards a pensioned society’.
The blame for this should be shared equally by government (for coming forward with measures without considering all implications) and the opposition (which tried to claim credit for defeating a government proposal, without waiting for the debate on the finance bill in parliament for expressing its considered views).
Let us hope, a parliamentary committee supported by expert views will now go into the pros and cons of all initiatives taken since 2003 when New Pension Scheme (the present National Pension System) was introduced through an executive order without any legislative sanction. Of course, there was no opposition to the move, as the NPS was made applicable to employees joining service after introduction of the scheme!

M G Warrier, Mumbai


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