NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday cautioned tax-evaders in the country during his ‘Mann Ki Baat’ radio address, asking them to comply with the tax regime or be prepared to face the music.
Citing statistics of high-income group tax-payers in the country, the Prime Minister said in a country of 1.25 billion people, only 1.5 lakh were accounted for as earning an annual income beyond `50 lakh.
“This is preposterous,” he said, adding that in big cities, there were lakhs of people who earned beyond the income limit. “This is evident when you look at the houses they live in,” the PM said.
“After 30 September, if people come to grief on account of non-compliance with the tax regime, the government cannot help,” he said categorically.
Explaining the reason behind taking up this issue in his monthly radio address, Modi said that he wanted to give people a chance to show their willingness to comply with the law.
“I assure you that if you comply with the regime before 30 September, you will neither face any inquiry nor will you be asked about your source of income,” the Prime Minister said.
Significantly, Modi was all praise for people belonging to the lower income category. He referred to some cases in particular, to highlight their contribution in nation-building.
The Prime Minister referred to Chandrakant Kulkarni, who contributes `5,000 to the Swachh Bharat programme from his monthy pension of `16,000. Quite clearly, Modi was emphatic in his assertion that higher-income groups need to fall in line — the sooner the better.
Modi said his government was determined to bring those not complying with the tax-regime to book. He also suggested launching a nationwide campaign, if the exemption scheme till 30 September fails to bring the desired results.
The Prime Minister referred to the International Yoga Day celebrated on June 21. Modi also mentioned the recent induction of three women as fighter pilots in the Indian Air Force.