The only thing certain in life, other than its inevitable end, is taxes. And, if you are an Indian, the cesses, duties, fees, interest, penalties, surcharges, and anything else that the accountants and bookkeepers can come up with.
E.R. RAMACHANDRAN forwards a dummy’s guide (abridged) that offers stunning proof of how in liberalised India, the rich get richer, the poor get poorer, and the middle class get milked more than ever, every Budget day.
1) Q: What do you do?
So you pay: Professional tax
2) Q: What kind of business do you do?
A: Selling goods
So you pay: Sales tax
3) Q: From where do you get the goods?
A: From other state and countries
So you pay: Central sales tax, customs duty and octroi
4) Q: What do you get by selling goods?
So you pay: Income tax
5) Q: Where do you manufacture the goods?
A: At a factory
So you pay: Excise duty
6) Q: Do you have an office/ warehouse/ factory?
So you pay: Muncipal and fire tax
7) Q: Do you have a staff?
So you pay: Staff professional tax
8) Q: Do you do business in the millions?
So you pay: Turnover tax
9) Q: Do you take out over Rs 25,000 in cash from your bank?
A: Yes, to pay salariesy
So you pay: Cash handling tax
10) Q: Where are you taking your client out for lunch and dinner?
So you pay: Food and entertainment tax
11) Q: Are you going out of station for business?
So you pay: Fringe benefit tax
12) Q: Have you taken or given any service/s?
So you pay: Service tax
13) Q: How did you receive such a big amount?
A: It was a birthday gift
So you pay: Gift tax
14) Q: Do you have any wealth?
So you pay: Wealth tax
15) Q: Where do you go to reduce stress, for recreation and entertainment?
A: A spa, cinema or resort
So you pay: Entertainment tax
16) Q: Have you purchased a house?
So you pay: Stamp duty and registration fee
17) Q: How do you travel?
A: By bus
So you pay: Surcharge
18) Q: Any additional tax?
So you pay: Educational, additional educational and surcharge on all the central government’s taxes
19) Q: Have you ever delayed any time in paying any tax?
So you pay: Interest and penalty