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Pranab hints at review of tax proposals
NEW DELHI, Mar 12 (Agencies):
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Published on 12 Mar. 2011 11:48 PM IST
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Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee on Friday indicated that the government will review some of the contentious tax proposals announced in the Budget.
Officials in the ministry said that at least two proposals are going to be revisited. The first one pertains to the levy of service tax on healthcare, including diagnostic tests. Sources said that the 5% levy on diagnostics would certainly be dropped given the pressure from doctors, hospitals and even members of the Congress party. In case of the proposed 5% levy on treatment in centrally airconditioned treatment centres with 25-bed in-patient facility, the ceiling may be enhanced. On March 1, TOI was the first to report that the levy was being reviewed.
In addition, officials said that the proposal to levy 18.5% minimum alternate tax on special economic zones’ developers and units was also being reviewed. While the broad contours of the revised proposal relating to MAT on SEZ, whose implementation has been advanced by a year, has been worked out, a final decision was yet to be taken, a senior official told TOI. The commerce department has already opposed the proposal. Expressing surprise at the move, commerce and industry minister Anand Sharma had lodged his protest with Mukherjee.
As reported by TOI on Sunday, the finance minister had said that he would consult his colleagues on the issue.

 
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