SINCE the introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime on July 1 2017, the revenue mop-up has recorded a major high, indicating stabilisation of the One Nation One Tax policy. The GST collection in April recorded a high of over Rs 1.13 lakh crore, which is an increase of 10 per cent as compared to last year’s figures. While tax mop-up before beginning of the new fiscal can be termed as one of the reasons in the high revenue collections, it is also a result of the anti-evasion steps taken by the implementing authorities. Last fiscal saw a plethora of glitches that allowed tax evaders a way out of the GST. Now, the highest collection points to the quickfix that the officials have applied to plug the holes and stop tax evasion. It is again a pointer to the flexible approach of the Central Government in redressing concerns of the business and industry sectors. Making the stakeholders an integral part of policy-making is a viable step for a democratic government. The changes brought in GST mechanism to simplify it further for the business community is indication of a happy integration.
MISUSE OF FUNDS
WITH a view to undertake development works in their constituencies, members of both Houses of Parliament are allotted funds. While there are several noble examples of productive and humanitarian work being undertaken by MPs, complaints of misuse of funds also surface from time to time, defeating the very purpose of earmarking the funds. One such case has surfaced in Gujarat wherein three senior district officers were found to have misused the funds allocated by Union Minister Ms. Smriti Irani. This fact came to surface through a public interest litigation, leading to chargesheet being issued to them. To avoid such instances of misuse of MPLAD funds, the MPs themselves should be alert to proper use of funds and ensure that the projects they have planned are properly executed. They should also see to it that the projects they undertake have larger public utility on an ongoing basis. It is only then that the purpose of earmarking funds under MPLAd would be served.