No new tax on the middle class so far under Modi govt: Says Nirmala Sitharaman ahead of Budget 2023
Speaking during the function organized by RSS mouthpiece Panchjanya, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said that she is sensitive about the pressures faced by the middle class, as she too is from the same class of society.
The function was organized to mark the publication’s 75th year on Sunday.
Her comments have come just days before she is scheduled to present the Union Budget for 2023-24 on February 1.
Sitharaman said that being from the middle class herself, she was aware of the pressures on it and therefore the government has not imposed any fresh taxes on them.
“The Modi government has not levied any new tax on the middle class in any budget so far. No tax has been imposed on people who earn up to Rs.5 lakhs,” Sitharaman said during the event.
Responding to a question on freebies during an interactive session, the Finance Minister said that everybody tries to trap each other on this issue.
She said, “People try to trap each other by talking about freebies. The issue is not what is a freebie. The issue is whether you will be able to give that freebie or not. If anybody claims to give freebies, then they must show it in the budget, and they should get the budget scrutinized at the end of the year.”
She added that if the budget or the accounts are found to be clean, then that expense cannot be termed as a freebie.
Launching an attack on the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) over freebies, Sitharaman said that the Delhi government gives free power to citizens up to a certain limit. She added that many states give freebies to people, but don’t show them in their budgets.
“They just leave it to Modi ji to manage what they had spent. If you had sought votes in the name of freebies, then why does the Centre have to manage the burden?” she questioned.
[With Inputs from IANS]
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