Punjab's draconian tax exemption to be dumped

Last Updated 19 March 2018, 15:11 IST

The tax payer will not have to pay for the Income Tax levied on the Punjab's chief minister, cabinet ministers and MLAs, most of whom are already incredibly rich, anymore.

The VIP legislators in the state  had been  having a smooth, tax-free ride on the state exchequer for several decades.

The  tax exemption to the legislators, who draw hefty salaries, will now cease  as the state government  on Monday proposed  amending the act that provided the tax exemption to MLAs and ministers.

The bill for relevant changes in the act will be presented during the budget session of the Punjab State Assembly that starts on Tuesday.

The move will ensure that the ministers and MLAs will start paying their own tax  from March 2018.  

The decision will provide some relief to the state coffers that are already reeling under colossal debt.

The Punjab government, as of now, pays a whopping Rs 11.08 crore as income tax of  these VIPs.

Out of this, Rs 10.72 crore is  the tax paid for MLAs, while the remaining is that paid for ministers.

The neighbouring states of Haryana and Himachal Pradesh  -  states carved out of Punjab in 1966  - continue to burden their respective state exchequers by letting their legislators be free of paying income tax.

(Published 19 March 2018, 14:44 IST)

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