Forthcoming Budget Could Be Harsh

29 January 2008, New Delhi. Mr. P Chidambaram, Finance Minister of India, said on Tuesday that the coming budget could be harsh on the people. He is going to present the union budget in February. Mr. Chidambaram was asked about the tax cuts in the forthcoming budget, when he was attending an award ceremony. Mr. Chidambaram answered, “I have not started working on it (The budget) yet. All I know that you would not be so kind to me on February 29″. Further he said,” year 2007 has been good for everyone, including tax collectors. I hope 2008 will be better”.

Finance minister has been awarded as the Politician of the year award by a private TV channel. After being awarded, finance minister answered the queries. Mr. Chidambaram also said, “I know that politics is a very different and difficult vocation. Yet if so many are (there) in politics, it is because at the end of the day, we believe that something can be achieved through politics”. Further he said, “Politics is not about individual achievements or collective achievements, politics is about bringing everything together so that we can make a great country”. Mr. Chidambaram expressed his feeling and said, “I am quite proud to be in politics and proud to be called a politician”.

Answering the question about volatility in the stock market, Mr. Chidambaram said, “I am not worried about market going up and down.” Replying the query about service tax on lawyers, Mr. Chidambaram said, “no one believes that lawyers render any services. So there cannot be any service tax on lawyers.”