Taxes, Government Coffers and Welfare Schemes
That the populace is at times carried away by the magnanimity of the government was never in doubt and the interim budget presented by the Finance Minister only goes a step further to reaffirm this hypothetical belief.
Wooing the middle class with a string of tax rebates and concessions, he has given a populist flavour to his proposals with an eye clearly on the ensuing elections. Unmindful of the fact that such measures will not prove beneficial to the financial health of the country, people though have come to except such lavishness from the government on the eve of polls. For a population that never tires of criticising the government at every available opportunity for its acts of omissions and commissions, it comes as a big surprise then that such sops and other gratifications go a long way in placating it. This is the worst flaw in any democracy and especially one that has a quest for popularity deciding the sort of government it has in office. Any government working with an eye on pleasing its people with every legislation that it enacts is sure to lead the nation on a downhill track. With the nation tottering on the brink of an economic debacle due to flawed financial programs brought about partially by global recession and to a degree by unpardonable blunders of successive administrations, how is it that the citizens still hold the view that they should, and will, only vote such a government to power that will bent backwards to please the public. Going by recent trends where people have come to expect the government to go soft on the taxation structures imposed, it becomes exceedingly difficult to understand how the government is supposed to function with its coffers inadequately low to support various welfare schemes. It is time people realized the importance of having a government in place that may at times be demanding to the extent of being strict in implementing its fiscal plans in order to generate better revenues for the state exchequer. It is best left to the public to decide – short time gains or ensuring a healthy economy for the country!
PACHU MENON, Margao
Wall Protection for Golna-Pomburpa Road
At Golna-Pomburpa, Sarpanch ward no 3 near the chapel of Our Lady of Augustias the main road about 80 metres in length is narrow and is fenced with barbed wires. This small stretch has become dangerous for the motoring public. When two wheelers and four heavy wheelers meet each other they cannot not pass freely. If any rider drives in without caution, could be a fatal fall on the barbed wire. Some years back one cyclist had lost his life and many minor accidents have gone unnoticed. Therefore here wall protection is needed for the motoring public. Successive sarpanchs and ward members elected and gone but nobody bothered to give an eye to this accident zone site, only the panchayat works according to their whims and fancies to beautify the village with mercury vapour lamps by installing 2 lights per pole for the road and other for the houses protection where there is a vote bank. Genuine development is neglected. This is all waste of public fund with no accountability. The panchayat minister Laxmikant Parsekar says the Golden Jubilee Fund bestowed on the panchayats should be used judiciously.
BABLUIS PEREIRA, Pomburpa
Rented Village Homes Should be Taxed
It has become a common trend in some villages in Goa that the owners rent out their premises in order to make quick money. Some of them rent out part of their houses whereas others rent out their entire old houses and the owners live in towns. No one is against such business but the innocent villagers have to bear the brunt of the nuisance created by the people living in rented houses due to inadequate facilities. There are problem of electricity, sanitation and inadequate supply of water. One of the worst problems is sanitation. Since they do not have proper toilet facilities they defecate in behind bushes and fields. The house drainage water is deposed in the open area as a result of which it emanate foul odour and it becomes a breeding ground for mosquitoes thereby compounding the problem of spreading water-borne diseases. One wonders how the panchayats, water department, electricity department and the Health department close their eyes on such matters. It is the duty of every village panchayat to check these irregularities in the villages. They must come heavily on the owners for not paying commercial taxes and not providing sanitation facilities. The electricity department must also charge them commercial rates. Finally the owners must pay commercial tax for renting out their premises. If the owners do not abide by the panchayat rules then such illegal activities of renting out their premises must be stopped.
RUI PEREIRA, NAVELIM