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Congress mocks Modi over promise to reform taxation system

PTI | Last Updated: Tuesday, January 7, 2014 - 21:03

New Delhi: Congress on Tuesday took potshots at Narendra Modi over his remarks on reforming taxation system, saying all countries of the world have income tax and the BJP leader was adding economics to the list of subjects he knows nothing about.

Union Minister Jairam Ramesh also mocked the BJP`s Prime Ministerial candidate for listening to people like yoga guru Ramdev, who had demanded abolition of all kinds of taxes and pitched for a single `Banking Transaction Tax` if Modi forms the next government.
"So far Mr Modi has shown lack of knowledge of geography and history and if he is going to listen to Swami Ramdev, ... all the people of economics... What can I say...? Mr Modi is now adding economics to the list of subjects he knows nothing about. First it was geography, history and now it is economics," Ramesh said.

The Rural Development was reacting to a question on Modi advocating tax reforms at an event organised by Ramdev on Sunday.
Promising reform in the taxation system in the country, Modi had said that the present system had become a burden on the common man.

Ramesh pointed out that the 1957 budget presented by then Finance Minister T T Krishnamachary had an expenditure tax and it was abandoned very soon.

"Then the idea was discussed in 1980s...Because (former Union Minister and Congress leader) Vasant Sathe was its greatest champion. L K Jha committee was set up and they rejected the idea.

"When Manmohan Singh was the Finance Minister (in Narasimha Rao government), again Sathe pedelled the idea. Then Dr Raja Chelliah examined. This has been well examined. All countries of the world have income tax," the Minister said criticising Modi`s statement.

He also alleged that Modi`s aim was "to help the rich and a few people" in the country.

The Congress strategist`s statement came at a time when BJP has been talking about abolition of taxes. Former BJP President Nitin Gadkari had last month said that he was contemplating incorporating a proposal to abolish income, sales and excise taxes in the vision document of his party.

First Published: Tuesday, January 7, 2014 - 21:03

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