Monday, May 27, 2024

Rajiv scrapped inheritance tax to save Indira’s wealth’


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Morena/New Delhi, April 25: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday alleged that former PM Rajiv Gandhi had abolished inheritance tax in 1985 after his mother Indira Gandhi’s death to save her wealth from going to the government, as he continued his relentless attack on the Congress over wealth redistribution and inheritance tax.
Modi also claimed at a poll rally in Morena in Madhya Pradesh that after benefitting from the abolition of estate duty–a levy imposed on inherited movable and immovable assets, the Congress now wants to bring back the levy.
As the political slugfest over the issue of inheritance tax escalated on the eve of the second phase of the Lok Sabha polls, the Congress hit back at Modi, calling his remarks on Rajiv Gandhi “lies”. The opposition party also cited the then finance minister V P Singh’s budget speech in 1985 on scrapping of inheritance tax.
If the Congress comes to power, it will snatch more than half of the earnings of the people through inheritance tax, Modi claimed.
A day after Rahul Gandhi’s remark that those who call themselves “deshbhakt” are scared of the ‘X-ray’ of caste census, Modi also said the Congress wants to confiscate people’s jewellery and small savings by conducting an X-ray of their properties and valuables.
“Listen with your ears wide open about the sins that the Congress has committed. I want to put forth an interesting fact. When sister Indira Gandhi passed away, there was a law by virtue of which half portion of the wealth used to go to the government. There was a talk then that Indiraji willed her wealth in her son Rajiv Gandhi’s name,” the prime minister said.
“To save the money going to the government, the then PM Rajiv Gandhi abolished the inheritance tax.”
The Congress wants to reinforce the tax more powerfully now after its four generations reaped benefit of the wealth passed on to them, he said. An adviser to the opposition party’s ‘shehzada’ (referring to Rahul Gandhi) has now suggested imposition of inheritance tax, he said. Modi on Wednesday seized upon Congress leader Sam Pitroda’s remarks on inheritance tax to step up the ruling BJP’s attack on the issue of “wealth redistribution”. The Congress later distanced itself from the comments of the US-based president of its overseas wing and asserted that it has no plan to introduce such a tax.
Modi said that as long as the BJP is there, it will not allow any designs like imposition of inheritance tax to succeed. (PTI)


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