Friday, 22 November 2013 07:02
By Ashwin HemmathagamaOur Lobby CorrespondentTissa Attanayake
The Budget deficit has been narrowed by cutting down school uniforms and the fertilizer subsidy. These promises are unrealistic. The reload tax and the supermarket taxes are pushing the public from the frying pan to the fire. This is nothing more than a CHOGM tax. Knowing what is going to happen we kept away from the Budget speech.
This is a Budget that will further promulgate Government inefficiency and bankruptcy. There are no benefits extended from Budget 2014. It is nothing more than a plan that continues to rip you off. The Government lacks clear vision and direction leading to a debt crisis. All in all there is a 16% decrease in the income the Government expects to collect. So, the fertiliser subsidy is reduced by 49% for the first nine months. The subsidy given for school uniforms and textbooks is reduced by 29%. This is how they maintain the budget deficit.
Dr. Harsha de Silva
There is a big disparity between what people expected from the Government and what was given in Budget 2014. This Budget didn’t increase the salaries but an allowance was given of Rs. 1,500. On the other hand the tax on potatoes, onion, and dhal has been increased. If you put a mobile phone reload worth Rs. 100, out of which you can take calls worth of Rs. 75 and the remaining is taken by the Rajapaksa Government as tax. The super market tax will also make life difficult for the ordinary people.
Budget 2014 is a dream, lengthier than a carpet but full of false promises. We will continue to debate highlighting the unfavourable factors in it.
The indirect taxes will continue to rip-off the consumer. This is nothing more than what we saw last year, which allocated funds to ministries but respective fund transfers were held back.
Ajith P. Perera
The inflation is 9.8%. If state employee is receiving a salary of Rs. 15,000 the inflation reduces purchasing power by Rs. 1,500 But the Government is giving the state employees an allowance of Rs. 1,200. The deficit remains Rs. 300. Private sector employees were not considered in this Budget.
The essential food items will go up. The trade unions were looking for Rs. 10,000 increase but nothing was given in return. I don’t know how long this Government could continue to mislead the public. There is no point of having a large Cabinet and extended panel of ministers. They are useless just like this Government.