INLD wants special House session to oppose farmer wealth tax



Chandigarh: The main opposition Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) party in Haryana on Saturday demanded that the state government should convene a special session of the Assembly against the Centre's proposed wealth tax on farmers.

INLD MLA Abhay Singh Chautala said the Centre's move would put additional burden on the farmers who are already reeling under a load of problems, including high debt.

"The Centre's decision to impose wealth tax will ruin the peasantry...We demand a special session of the Assembly...The Haryana Assembly should pass a resolution against the proposed anti-farmer Bill," Chautala told a press conference here.

The bill proposes one per cent tax on the collector's rate on agricultural land falling within eight km radius of urban areas.

Chautala noted that the proposed tax would hurt farmers throughout the country but "in particular it will ruin the Haryana farmers (as) in our state municipal or corporation limits change after every 10-15-km".

"The proposed wealth tax is to be levied on farmers whose land falls within 8 km of municipal or corporation limits. Once it is implemented, farmers within the prescribed limits would have to pay an annual tax ranging anywhere between Rs 30,000 and Rs 1 lakh per acre.

"From where will a poor farmer, who manages to earn just about Rs 30,000-35,000 from each acre of land, pay this tax. This is yet another anti-farmer step taken by the Congress-led government at the Centre," Chautala alleged.

He demanded that Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda should convene the Assembly on this serious issue.

INLD state president Ashok Arora said they would start an awareness campaign to warn the people about this anti-farmer step unless the state government announced a special session as demanded by his party.

Neighbouring Punjab has already decided to have a special Assembly session on May 3 on the proposed wealth tax on farmers.

PTI