This budget, to be held on the 25th and the 29th of February, proves to be a very crucial one for the present government, not just for the fact that a billion hopes are pinned on them, but also because they are no longer under the shadow of the previous government's policies.
A lot rests in the NDA government's shoulders. People would watch them deliver and not-deliver and that would be deciding their fate in the next general elections.
'People as Partners'
To involve the general public in the process of budget making, the government has launched a forum called the "People as Partners". This is a platform for the people to discuss their expectations from the government and suggestions for th eupcoming budget.
Apart from that, the government has also set up a special committee led by Justice R.V Eswar to simplify the Income-Tax Act, 1961. Changes have been reccommended, which include timely payment of tax returns.
The government is also expected to act more upon personal taxes. An extension of exemption limit of taxes or rehashing the tax slab to suit the rising inflation is also something that common man looks forward to.
It is believed that the government may raise the tax exemption from Rs 2.5 lakhs to Rs 3 lakhs.
Salaried people may rejoice
Salaried employees may expect some relief as the government may allow deduction for expenses. Right now, the deduction of expenses is allowed on several other heads of income other than the salary.
For instance, under the head income from house property, an individual may claim a deduction of flat 30% from the net annual value of the house property to cover all expenses.
The government may revive the standard deduction to address the issue. It is expected that the government may set a reasonable amount as a standard deduction to bring relief to the salaried individual.
Real estate sops
The government may also address the delay in real estate projects that causes extreme anxiety in investors who depend on personal loans and they get possession after 3 years. The expected relief may come in the form of an extension of time from 3 years to five years for claiming a deduction for mortgage interest on self-occupied house property.
Currently, the deduction of a house built within 3 years from the date of loan acquirement will get a tax exemption of Rs 200,000 (subject to certain conditions), anything beyond that would entite a deduction of only Rs 30,000. This 3 years will be extended to 5 years.
Bringing down TDS from 10% to 5% for most types of income is another expectation for the year.