Letter to Editor, Financial Express, Published on 13th Feb.
Tax breaks still lure savingsThe Financial ExpressPosted online: Tuesday , February 12, 2008 at 2354 hrs IST
The article (‘Self-sustained savings’, Feb 11) argues that it’s time to do away with tax breaks or bring pension products in line with tax treatment of small savings. But savings, investments and returns are not synonymous. As a safely regulated stockmarket is a myth, it’s irresponsible to suggest that we leave senior citizens and small investors at the mercy of bulls and bears. We have had enough bad experiences with NBFCs. Every investor would like security and returns, in that order, and not as mutually exclusive benefits. Also, private sector life insurers’ clamour for tax rebates (under Sec 80C) for their products, and the demand to grant a separate exemption upto Rs 1 lakh for insurance policies, defy the contention that tax breaks don’t affect investment decisions. Note how the extention of 80C cover to equity-linked schemes has improved their desirability at the retail level.
—Subhashree Kishore, New Delhi