I finally filled up my Income Tax declaration today.. for the first time. I didn’t give it much thought last year, and I paid for it (Pun intended!), so this year, I decided to declare whatever was applicable, which was mainly my house rent. I’ve decided to invest in something this year.. anything as long as it’s not taxable… yes.. that’s the new word I learnt in the past 24 hrs. I know as much about taxes as would Britney Spears about motherhood. All I know is that at the end of the month, I look at my payslip and crib about how much they’ve cut, or be relieved when it’s lesser than I had expected (Not that I know how much they were going to deduct in the first place! If it were that, I’d probably be giving advice to other people rather than taking them!) I’m just glad I’m going to save some this year.
Paying Income Tax is one thing, but having to stand in line to do it is just a pain in the neck. Why don’t they just come to our homes and collect the damn receipts or whatever? And as if that is not enough, we have to deal with not-so-pleasant IT agents while doing it, who would bluntly tell us what’s missing from our form, and even after getting that done, we would have to stand in the same line all over again cos’ no one would let you ahead, no matter how many times you’ve reached the end. Aren’t they paid by the same tax which I’m submitting the form for? How about a little respect here!
We pay taxes so that the goverment can run the country, the state, the locality. I’ve done my part, what about theirs? Indian city roads are pathetic, and the good ones last exactly till the next outbreak of rains. We still face power-cuts 60 years after independence and clean drinking water is only as near as the next grocery shop. Are we simply fattening our politicians’ wallets? Do we pay with our sweat for their so-called “study-trips” abroad to learn new techniques, which are hardly ever implemented because its not feasible in India. I think we have enough technology and brain-power to invent our own ways, we just need to channel more funds in the direction of research, rather than sending overaged pot-bellied officials abroad to learn new ideas. You can’t teach an old dog new tricks. The only place they should be is behind their desks, on time, and ready to serve the public, afterall, they are public servants for a reason.. right?
As the joke goes “A tax is a fine for doing good”, but I don’t think I’ve done enough good to be paying a fine for it. Oh well… what the heck..
PS: Recently with my minimum, nonetheless newfound awareness and knowledge about taxes, I tend to perform complex mental calculations about the tax amount I pay on everything I buy (Excluding beer..hehe) I hope its just a seasonal illness and subsides by the end of the month!