Indirect tax collections rise 5.6% in Apr-Oct

Indi­rect tax rev­enues rose mar­gin­al­ly by 5.6 per­cent in the April-Octo­ber peri­od to over Rs 2.85 lakh crore, main­ly on account of increase in ser­vice tax and cus­toms col­lec­tions. How­ev­er, excise col­lec­tion, which is an indi­ca­tion of eco­nom­ic activ­i­ty, declined by 1.2 per cent dur­ing the sev­en month peri­od to Rs 88,330 crore, an offi­cial state­ment said. Indi­rect tax col­lec­tions so far this fis­cal has been 45.7 per­cent of the bud­get tar­get of full 2014–15. The gov­ern­ment has bud­get­ed to col­lect over Rs 6.24 lakh from indi­rect tax­es in the cur­rent fis­cal, up 20.28 per­cent over the col­lec­tion in 2013–14. Ser­vice Tax col­lec­tions increased 10.9 per­cent dur­ing the sev­en months end­ing Octo­ber to Rs 90,673 crore. This amounts to 42 per­cent of the bud­get tar­get. Mop up from cus­toms rose 7.5 per­cent to over Rs 1.06 lakh crore in April-Octo­ber. This is 52.6 per­cent of bud­get esti­mates. Eco­nom­ic growth, after remain­ing at sub-5 per­cent in last two fis­cals, is esti­mat­ed to be between 5.4–5.9 per­cent in 2014–15. Dur­ing the April-August peri­od of 2014–15, indus­tri­al out­put growth as mea­sured by Index of Indus­tri­al Pro­duc­tion (IIP) grew at 2.8 per­cent, as against flat pro­duc­tion in same peri­od of the pre­vi­ous fis­cal. In the Bud­get, Finance Min­is­ter Arun Jait­ley had hiked excise duty on cig­a­rettes in the range of 11 per­cent to 72 per­cent. The excise duty on pan masala was increased from 12 per cent to 16 per­cent, unman­u­fac­tured tobac­co from 50 per­cent to 55 per­cent and gutkha and chew­ing tobac­co from 0 per­cent to 70 per­cent. Jait­ley has announced a host of mea­sures, includ­ing hik­ing tax exemp­tion lim­it, incen­tives for the hous­ing sec­tor and relief in indi­rect tax­es on auto and oth­er sec­tors to pro­mote indus­tri­al out­put and boost growth.

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