Finance minister Arun Jaitley addressed a press conference on Monday, a day after asserting that India’s economy is getting back to normal two months after the scrapping of high-value banknotes.
In a Facebook post, he also attacked opposition parties for siding with what he called a “black money-friendly” status quo. Jaitley said the long-term gains of the government’s demonetisation move would outweigh the pain when the exercise was being implemented.
The scrapping of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 banknotes – which made up 86% of India’s economy by value – saw a nationwide cash crunch and millions of people line up outside banks and ATMs to deposit, exchange or withdraw money.
The move was aimed at draining illegal cash from the economy, but opposition parties and some economists have argued that the move has adversely affected farmers and the poor with large-scale job losses and a hollowing-out of the rural economy.
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* This data is real, not an estimation, the FM says.
* For most states, VAT collections have increased, says Jaitley.
* In December --- compared to last December, the customs has declined because the gold imports have come down, says Jaitley.
* Overall increase in indirect taxes for the month of April to December compared to same figures last year is 25%, says Jaitley.
* Central Excise increased 31.6% in December 2016 as compared to December 2015, the FM says.
* The big picture is direct taxes have increased in the first three quarters, indirect taxes too significantly moved up, says Jaitley.
FM @arunjaitley briefing media : April to December Direct Tax Growth Rate 12.01% and Indirect Tax Growth Rate 25% over last year.— Ministry of Finance (@FinMinIndia) January 9, 2017