Few days back we did Top 5 Budget expectations based on our own analysis. Assocham yesterday released findings based on a survey done of 500 employees from different sectors and different cities. As is expected, majority of them expect raise in the exemption limit, reduction in tax rates & raise in medical / transportation reimbursements.
Here are the findings of the survey:
- Over 89% of respondents feel that current basic exemption limit of Rs 1.80 lakhs should be increased to Rs 3 lakh because the limit has not increased in line with the high inflation prevalent for last few years.
- 82% of the respondents want reduction in the maximum marginal tax rate; which is at 30% currently, much higher compared to other countries.
- The peak tax rate should be bought down from 30% to 25% and should be at higher income slab of above Rs. 10 Lakh (as compared to currently Rs. 8 Lakh)
- 72% of the respondents said the standard deduction for salaried employees should be revived. They feel that salaried employees should not be deprived of standard deduction from their salaries when professionals/businessmen are eligible for deduction of expenses incurred for earning their income.
- Majority of respondents were of the opinion that in case of healthcare costs, the existing tax free limit of Rs. 15,000 should be increased to Rs. 50,000/-.
- The transportation allowance needs to be revised upwards from existing Rs. 800 per month to at least Rs. 3,000 per month. The current limit was fixed more than a decade ago and needs to be definitely revised considering the current transportation costs.
- The housing loan benefits which permits Rs. 1.50 lakh deduction for interest on loan for a self-occupied property needs to be revised as it has not been revised for a long time while property prices have increased manifold. Majority of them expect this revision to be upto Rs. 3 Lakh. This revision will also give a big boost to housing sector.
- Over 72% of the respondents said the government should also increase the aggregate deductible limit of Rs. 1 lakh to Rs. 3 lakh as the same would encourage long term saving by tax payers.
- Investments in infrastructure bonds currently attract deduction up to Rs. 20,000. Most of the respondents said that this should be revised to Rs. 50,000 as it will also help with funds required for the development of infrastructure sector in India.
The Budget day is just 3 days away – We will have to wait and watch as to how many of these Employee wishes will be fulfilled by our Finance Minister..
What is your take?