Indian Economy Growing At a Faster Rate: Sitharaman

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Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday dismissed all talks about economic slowdown saying that India’s economy is growing at a faster rate than any other major world economy.

Addressing a press conference, Sitharaman said that the banks have been asked to transfer the benefits of repo rate cuts by the RBI to the borrowers saying that the move will bring the home and auto loan rates down.

Sitharaman said that the labour law has been enforced, web-based jurisdiction, scrutiny, compounding of offences, self-certification are in place. She said that faster and quicker approval has been given for acquisitions and mergers and that they are moving with a more human approach than the penalty.

Sitharaman further stated that GST will soon come up with fewer number of forms and ensures the free flow of refund so that it do not affect the people. She said that all pending GST refund due to micro, small and medium enterprises will be paid within 30 days.

She said that the budget announcement of the surcharge had pushed the effective income tax rate for individuals with taxable income of Rs. 2-5 crore up to 39 percent from 35.88 percent and for those above Rs. 5crore to 42.7 percent. She said that the Pre-Budget position is restored.

The finance minister said that to address the liquidity crunch, the government will infuse upfront Rs. 70,000 crore into public sector banks adding that the move will enable release of Rs. 5lakh crore in the market.

She also reiterated that all tax notices to be issued from centralized system to end harassment of taxpayers. All old tax notices will be decided by October 1 or will be uploaded again through the centralized system.

The finance minister also announced revoking ban on the purchase of vehicles by government departments which will now replace their old vehicles with new ones. She said that the auto sector is facing its worst crisis in almost 20 years and that sale of cars, tractors and other vehicles have been declining for months.

Another announcement made by Sitharaman regarding non-compliance of corporate social responsibility said that violations of CSR norms under the companies law will not be a criminal offence and will be treated as a civil liability.

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