An Open Letter To PM Modi…From A “Frustrated Indian Entrepreneur”

Hon’ble Prime Minister Modi Ji,

I write this in great dismay and deep anguish at the sleight of hand of your finance minister. What is being played out is a joke on Indian Economy and its people. Here are five pointers that reflect badly on you:

1. How is repaying ‘our’ tax refunds ‘your’ stimulus? In fact, the FM needs to answer why they were not refunded earlier and had to wait for a year. And what happens to those refunds above 5 lacs? Imagine if every debtor considers it a favour to even pay off outstanding bills!

2. How is a loan a stimulus package? By a similar measure, can we treat it as income in our books instead of showing it as a liability so that we never have to repay it? Btw, the banks don’t have a choice but to grant an additional loan to ensure that the MSMEs survive and don’t turn sick! It is normal banking practice! As of 2019, the total loans disbursed by all banks increased from 87.46 lac crores to 97.10 lac crores. That would be a 9.64 lac crore ‘Economic Stimulus’ in 2019, going by your accounting!

3. If reclassifying SSIs, Micro Enterprises and MSMEs is such a ‘krantikari’ move, then why did it need a pandemic to decide on it? Reform doesn’t need a pandemic to push you?

4. What is the 25% TDS reduction about? The tax liability doesn’t come down? The tax rates haven’t come down? In fact, with profitability being severely impacted, the TDS itself will have to be refunded very soon.

5. How is it that we saving less is an economic stimulus? It is our income, our savings and our spending. In such case, even withdrawals of about 60,000 crores from EPF account, because we have been driven to eat out our savings, is a stimulus.

Sir, enough of the humiliation. Enough of the accounting jugglery and voodoo economics. There is zero outlay from the government in reviving the economy. You are slowly strangulating the golden goose. Your definition of ‘Atma Nirbharta’ is to leave us in the sea to swim on our own, while you are in a chopper up above.

What you want us to do is to survive by taking loans, increasing liabilities, saving less and eating out of our safety net so that you claim it as your support! All this, while you haven’t spoken a word on the migrant labour, walking silently for thousands of kilometres, without a whimper of protest, as they try to run away from your rule!

Feel our pain. Have a heart. Be true to yourself. Wipe our tears, if you can. And if you can’t, at least don’t treat us like an object to be used, abused and thrown. And if you, beyond using religion for the political theatrics, believe in God, remember that you will be answerable to him, one day!

Regards

— A Frustrated Indian Entrepreneur

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