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Demonetisation: India has immorally harmed its people, says Steve Forbes

  • This article is available online and will be published on the January 25 edition of Forbes magazine.
  • The article criticises the demonetisation and called it 'a shocking move for a democratically elected government'.
  • Forbes also suggested few other measures that can work better than demonetisation.
India has immorally harmed its people says Steve Forbes
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Finally, someone has honestly spoken about demonetisation and what exactly the central government has done to its citizens. No political correctness, no playing around words, no humdrum around the suffering of people, and no trying to find solace in nationalism talks.


However, these honest words about the demonetisation have come from Steve Forbes, the editor-in-chief and chairman of Forbes Media. On an article, titled 'What India Has Done To Its Money Is Sickening And Immoral', he has pointed out many important unspoken aspects of demonetisation. 


Steve Forbes, who was nominated twice as a Republican Party presidential candidate in 1996 and 2000, pointed out that the new currency ₹500 and ₹2000 notes come in different sizes than the old banned as well as legal currency notes in India and that it has created huge problems in the ATMs. 


Forbes also mentioned that many sectors in India runs on cash as they operate informally to avoid 'excessive rules and taxes'. 


He also added, 'The government bureaucracy is notorious for its red tape, lethargy and corruption, forcing people to get by on their wits.'


The Modi government push for the cashless digital economy has been termed as 'force-marching India into a digitized credit system' by Forbes in this article


He has rightly pointed out that if free markets are accommodated digitization will shape up on its own. Similarly, flat tax or simple, low tax rates will make all the efforts to evade tax redundant, so people will end up paying their simple taxes. If the red tapping and procedural roadblocks are removed, people will do their business legally. 


India has immorally harmed its people says Steve Forbes


For example, in real estate and property deals there are a nth number of formalities and taxes to be paid to different authorities, so to avoid these taxes much of the deals are done through cash and demonetisation has hit real estate badly due to cash crunch. 


The article further rightly says money represents what we produce and 'What India has done is commit a massive theft of people's property without even the pretence of due process--a shocking move for a democratically elected government.'


Rather than demonetisation, here is what Steve Forbes suggests to stop black money hoarding, counterfeiting currency, and income tax evasion:


1. Reduce income as well as business tax rates and simplifying the tax structure in favour of taxpayers.


2. Make rupee powerful by stabilising the government and the financial system.


3. Simplify the rules of setting up business at a low cost and in lesser time.


4. Also, cut down the rules related to infrastructure that pushes back the projects for many years slowing down the overall process of economic development. 

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