"The present taxation system is a burden on common man. It leads to bureaucratic control. The need of the hour is to look into it afresh and bring reforms. Our party is already working on it,” Modi said at an event organised by yoga guru Ramdev, who has demanded abolition of all kinds of taxes and pitched for a single ‘Banking Transaction Tax’ if the BJP leader becomes Prime Minister. Modi skips reference to PM's attack on him JPN/Agencies
"My party leaders and experts have recently met and considered the issue for over three hours. Some problems may appear in the first sight but we will have a look at it and find new solutions,” he added.
Modi further said: “The expectation and hope, which Baba Ramdev has put in the BJP and me personally, we will try our best to live up to it. If intentions are right, solutions can be found for all problems.”
Modi’s remarks assume significance as the BJP has been talking about abolition of taxes in its internal meetings in the past.
Modi also used the occasion to target the Congress-led UPA government. He blamed the Centre’s "wrong" policies for the economic woes, saying it had resulted in the decline of manufacturing industry, which required an immediate boost if economy was to recover.
Modi said "policy paralysis" had resulted in lack of coal for power industry despite India having vast reserves of it.
“Power projects have stalled, forcing us to import steel as industrialists cannot manufacture it here in the absence of electricity even though we have plenty of iron ore,” he said.
The BJP’s prime ministerial candidate also spoke about recent cases of gold smuggling, invoking decades of 60s and 70s when it was rampant and caused the rise of underworld.
"Even sand is being smuggled these days. We are talking about corruption. State needs progressive policy drive and its execution with transparency. It will remove corruption," he said.
Further blaming the UPA, Modi said Indian had failed to capitalize on the strength of its young population despite having over 65 percent of its population under 35 years of age.
"This demographic dividend could have been an asset but the country's leadership has converted it into demographic disaster," he said, recalling how a high-powered body set up by the Prime Minister for skill-development never met for three years while it was supposed to meet every three month.
Modi said things can be turned around with strong will and intention, stating that the word 'disappointment' was not in his dictionary.
Former BJP president Nitin Gadkari had last month said that he was contemplating incorporating a proposal to abolish income, sales and excise taxes in the vision document of his party.
Gadkari is heading the team that is preparing the vision document for the general elections.
Ramdev earlier said that once Modi succeeds in coming to power, he should declare the black money being held by Indians in foreign banks to be national wealth and bring it back and also set up a National Farmer Income Commission.
Senior BJP leaders, including party chief Rajnath Singh and Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley, expressed support for the proposals.
Jaitley said the life of the common man had become all about paying taxes since his birth to death, listing out numerous taxes levied on using road to house, service, electricity, water besides income tax.
"Whatever a man earns through his hard work, he can finally keep only a small fraction of it and the rest goes out... There is a dire need to simplify the tax regime, to rationalize it," he said, adding he had come to appreciate points made by Ramdev and his aides following his long interactions with them over the years.
The BJP President also seconded the yoga guru's demand, saying there is a need for reform.
“This alternative of transaction tax is very good. We will consider it and do the best we can,” he said.
Highlighting the achievements of Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led NDA government, Rajnath Singh said the former enjoyed ‘current account surplus’ while the UPA regime suffered from current account deficit.
“Only 27 lakh new jobs were added to the economy during the UPA rule while NDA created employment for over six crore youths,” he said.
Narendra Modi chose to ignore Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's sharp attack on him.
"When these days’ people level baseless allegations at me, I look back (at my life) and think how great this country is and how great its people are who have lifted a 'chaiwala' (tea-seller) on their shoulders... There is no place for disappointment for a man who has lived this life," he said.
Manmohan Singh had at a press conference last week said that it would be ‘disastrous’ for the country if Modi becomes the Prime Minister.
Calling Prime Minister’s remarks on Modi as 'laughable', the BJP hit out at Manmohan Singh saying that the nine years of UPA rule were 'disastrous' for the country.
"The present taxation system is a burden on common man. It leads to bureaucratic control. The need of the hour is to look into it afresh and bring reforms. Our party is already working on it,” Modi said at an event organised by yoga guru Ramdev, who has demanded abolition of all kinds of taxes and pitched for a single ‘Banking Transaction Tax’ if the BJP leader becomes Prime Minister.
Modi skips reference to PM's attack on him