oppn parties Pseudo Agriculturists Must Be Exposed

News Snippets

  • Crude prices fall sharply as Saudi Arabia assures normal production in a few weeks. Prices fall by 5.4% to $65.30 per barrel
  • Sensex tumbles 700 points over fears that rising crude prices will deal a body blow to the tottering Indian economy
  • As Rajeev Kumar fails to appear before the CBI despite several notices, the agency forms a special team to locate and apprehend him
  • S Jaishankar says Pakistan is not a normal neighbour and its behaviour is a "set of aberrations"
  • External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar says PoK in Indian territory and the country hopes to have physical jurisdiction over it one day
  • Barasat Sessions court near Kolkata rejects Rajeev Kumar anticipatory bail application citing lack of jurisdiction as the reason
  • PM Modi celebrates his birthday with Narmada aarti and later has lunch with his mother.
  • All 6 Bahujan Samaj Party MLAs merge with the Congress in Rajasthan
  • Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee to meet PM Modi on Wednesday, state issues on the agenda
  • Pakistan to open Kartarpur corridor on Nov 9
  • Rajeev Kumar, ex-police commissioner of Kolkata and wanted for questioning in the Sarada scam does not appear before the CBI despite the state administration requesting him to do so
  • Supreme Court asks the Centre to restore normalcy in J&K but keeping national interest in mind
  • As Trump accepts the invitation to attend a programme in Houston with PM Modi, India rushes to settle trade issues with US
  • After drone attack on Aramco's Suadi Arabia facility, oil prices jump 19% in intra-day trading causing worries for India
  • Imran Khan raises nuclear war bogey again, says if Pakistan loses a conventional war, it might fight till the end with its nuclear arsenal
Sunni Wakf Board and Nirvani Akhara write to the Supreme Court for a negotiated settlement to the Ayodhya dispute
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Pseudo Agriculturists Must Be Exposed

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
Finance minister Arun Jaitley has said that the government has no plans to tax agricultural income as suggested by Niti Aayog member Bibek Debroy. He did not point out that as the law stands today, the Centre is not empowered by the Constitution to tax agricultural income. This power vests solely with the states. In fact, some states tax income from agriculture heavily, especially for cash crops like tea in Assam. If the Centre is to tax agricultural income, it will have to amend the constitution. But if it taxes agricultural income, then it will lead to double taxation, once by the state and then by the Centre.

One believes that it is not as much a question of taxing agricultural income as it is to plug the loophole being exploited by unscrupulous taxpayers to avoid paying taxes on dubious income being passed off as such. Since agricultural income is at present not taxed in income tax but just clubbed with other income for rate purpose, one can inflate one’s income to any extent and yet pay a small amount of tax. This is resulting in a loss of huge revenue for the department.

The basic problem is that people who are declaring agricultural income are doing so with complete disregard to their land holding. If one were to collate their land holding with the income they show from harvesting crops, one would find that the yield per acre would set world records by huge margins. It is this misuse that has to be first stopped. Taxpayers who declare agricultural income for clubbing purpose must be made to give details of their land holding (both leased and owned), the crop sowed, the yield per acre and the proceeds from sale of such yield. There must be a standard yield per acre and crop price location-wise that must be followed by the income tax department to determine and fix such income (much like the circle rate for property tax). If this procedure is followed, much of the grey areas will vanish and the incentive to fudge income will fall in the face of details to be provided. Pseudo agriculturists need to be exposed.