Finance Bill 2023 in Lok Sabha: Finance Minister’s Big Announcement on Pension of Government Employees
The Finance Bill 2023 was presented in the Lok Sabha on Friday by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman amidst chaos caused by opposition MPs’ demands for a JPC to investigate the Adani-Hindenburg issue. However, the bill was eventually passed amid the ruckus. In her speech, the Finance Minister made a significant announcement regarding the pension of government employees.
The Finance Minister proposed the constitution of a committee to look into the matter related to the pension of government employees, which will be headed by the Finance Secretary. Sitharaman also stated that the National Pension System (NPS) implemented for government employees needs improvement. She said that representations have been received that call for reform in the NPS, and the committee will look into the matter.
In addition to the pension issue, the Finance Minister also raised concerns about the acceptance of credit card payments on foreign visits under the Liberalized Remittance Scheme (LRS), and suggested that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) should take a closer look at the matter.
According to reports, the Finance Bill 2023 proposes to exempt debt mutual funds that invest less than 35% of their assets in equity from long-term capital gains tax, with only short-term capital gains tax being applicable. Holders of such mutual fund schemes who invest 35% of their assets in equity shares after getting the approval of the House will be taxed as per the slab.
It is worth noting that the Central and State Government employees have been demanding the restoration of the old pension scheme. Some states like Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, and Jharkhand have already restored the old pension (OPS) scheme. Meanwhile, employees from other states are planning to go on strike to demand the restoration of the old pension scheme. However, a strict warning has been issued by the Central Government, stating that any employee who goes on strike will be sacked.
In conclusion, the Finance Bill 2023 contains several proposals that aim to address various concerns regarding the financial landscape of the country, including the reform of the National Pension System for government employees. The bill is expected to provide significant benefits to the people and boost the economy once it becomes law.