Union Budget India 2018

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6 people are having a discussion on the topic (Amit, Varun, Sameera, John, Jyoti, Kabir). The GD topic is Union budget India 2018.


Category: Business, Economics


Group Discussion Starts

Amit : Hey everyone, today we are here to discuss about the Union Budget India 2018. The budget was presented in the parliament by the Finance Minister Mr. Arun Jaitley. It was presented on 1st Feb, 2018.


Varun : Yes, it was a very important one as it was right after the GST rollout last year which is an another topic of debate. Another reason it was very important was that it was last budget before 2019 elections. The expectations were quite a lot from this union budget.


Sameera : There were lot of expectations and I think it was a decent budget specially with the health protection care scheme announcement. It can be one of the biggest healthcare scheme in the world.


Varun : It sounds very good as an Idea but we need to wait and see how it can be executed as it would require lot of money and planning. India has still lot of catch up in terms of basic healthcare as compared to developed countries.


John: Yes I agree with that, Also there were lot of expectations with this budget by the salaried middle class but there was nothing special for them. Most of the salaried class expected tax slabs revision and/or increase in 80 C exemptions but nothing happened on those two fronts.


Jyoti: Yes even cess on tax was increased from 3% to 4%


Kabir: But if you see Medical and Travel allowance were made very easy with straight 40000 as standard deduction instead of previous ways. It is a very good move for salaried class.


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Jyoti: That is fine but changes in tax slab or 80 C would have been something which would have really made the middle class happy and I think that should have been done.


Varun: Let me bring another big discussion point here which really affected a lot of stock market investors across the country i.e. Long-term capital gains (LTCG) 10% taxation. This is something which was not expected. In fact, it was a very good exemption to have which made investors stick to long term investments and not go for riskier short term investment which were already taxed at 15%.


Amit : I don’t completely agree with you here. We are just concentrating on people living in urban areas, stock investors and middle class what about the Rural India. This budget is focused on Rural India especially farmers. There has been tax relaxation for Senior Citizens too which cannot be ignored.


John : I agree on that but budget should be balanced and there should be something for everyone. We should not analyze budget as bad for this section and good for another section. But Yes farmers and Senior citizens will gain from this budget.


Sameera : Bringing back the focus to healthcare scheme, This is one of the biggest single point we should focus on.


Varun : As I said before this is a good step but it is a proposal and we need lot of money to make it happen. Do we have that money and what amount of money would be required? This is something for long term but we cannot say much right now. But as I said, if this becomes successful, this budget would be remembered for long.


Kabir : This budget might be focusing on healthcare but India needs to invest first in raising the standards of basic healthcare infrastructure. Hospitals, Facilities, Doctors, Departments are all required to first to reach a basic level of infrastructure to make sure such a big healthcare scheme as proper support to get executed.

Amit : As I can see, we all agree the budget was different from many people’s expectations but it has brought focus on healthcare, agriculture and senior citizens which is really good.


Conclusion

This budget being a very important given it is the last before the next elections in the country, was received with mixed responses. It had some big points like focus on farmers, senior citizens. Also the announcement of one of the largest healthcare schemes in the world was a big step.

But there were issues like no relaxation for salaried middle class and also the re-introduction of the LTCG tax at 10% was something which were discussed a lot.


Facts

1. Healthcare scheme (National Health Protection Scheme) was announced which would provide healthcare over 10 crore Indians.

2. Income tax cess Health and education increased from 3% to 4%.

3. LTCG Tax was announced at 10% which was not there till last year

4. Salaries of MPs to revised every 5 years

5. Income Tax slabs were not revised

6. Focus on Rural India and Farmers

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