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Budget 2018: FM terms note ban as celebratory reward to honest taxpayers

The finance minister said the Indian economy is getting more formalised post note ban as more and more transactions now happen digitally

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

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Finance Minister Arun Jaitley

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today likened the drive of 2016 to a celebration of honesty, saying honest taxpayers receieved the move to tame black money as 'Imandari Ka Utsav'.

There has been a huge increase in the number of returns filed by taxpayers, Jaitley said while presenting the 2018-19 in Parliament today.

"We are enthused by this success of our measures and we pledge to continue to take all such measures in future by which the black money is contained and the honest taxpayers are rewarded. was received well by honest taxpayers as 'Imandari ka Utsav' only for this reason," he said in his speech, the last full year of government before the general elections next year.

In 2016-17, there were 8.5 million new tax filers as against 6.6 million in the preceding fiscal year, he said.

The number of effective tax payer base increased to 82.7 million at the end of fiscal ended March 2017 from 64.7 million at the beginning of 2014-15, he said further.

The BJP-led government had came to power in May 2014.

The finance minister said the Indian is getting more formalised post as more and more transactions now happen digitally.

"Benefits to the poor have been targeted more effectively with use of digital technology. of high value currency has reduced the quantum of cash currency and circulation in India," he said.

It has increased the taxation base and spurred greater digitisation of the economy, he said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in an address to the nation through television on November 8, 2016, announced phasing out of old Rs 1000 and Rs 500 currency notes from the system to tame black money.

"Massive formalisation of the businesses of MSMEs is taking place in the country after demonetisation and introduction of GST. This is generating enormous financial information database of MSMEs' businesses and finances," Jaitley said.

First Published: Thu, February 01 2018. 15:39 IST