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Sunday, April 21, 2024

Tax terrorism slur

In recent days, India has witnessed a troubling trend that strikes at the heart of democratic principles. Allegations of tax terrorism, selective targeting of opposition parties, and the detainment of prominent leaders have raised serious concerns about the state of governance and political fairness in the country. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government finds itself embroiled in controversy following revelations of coercion and intimidation tactics aimed at extracting funds from businesses and corporations. The recent exposure of undisclosed donors and recipients under the Electoral Bond Scheme, mandated by the Supreme Court, has shed light on the murky depths of political finance in India

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In recent days, India has witnessed a troubling trend that strikes at the heart of democratic principles. Allegations of tax terrorism, selective targeting of opposition parties, and the detainment of prominent leaders have raised serious concerns about the state of governance and political fairness in the country. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government finds itself embroiled in controversy following revelations of coercion and intimidation tactics aimed at extracting funds from businesses and corporations. The recent exposure of undisclosed donors and recipients under the Electoral Bond Scheme, mandated by the Supreme Court, has shed light on the murky depths of political finance in India. Reports of businesses feeling compelled to donate to the ruling BJP under duress from investigating agencies raise troubling questions about the integrity of the electoral process. Furthermore, the actions taken against opposition parties, particularly the detention of leaders like Arvind Kejriwal and the freezing of Congress’s bank accounts, smack of political vendetta. These incidents, coupled with exorbitant fines and tax demands conveniently timed on the eve of the Lok Sabha election, paint a picture of a government willing to go to any lengths to maintain its grip on power.

The international community has taken notice, with countries like Germany and the United States, along with the United Nations, expressing concern over the deteriorating state of democratic norms in India. The characterization of these actions as “tax terrorism” by opposition leaders underscores the gravity of the situation. The timing and nature of the penalties imposed on opposition parties raise legitimate questions about the impartiality and competence of the Income Tax Department under the Modi government. The sudden detection of discrepancies, coupled with hefty fines and penalties spanning several years, smacks of political manipulation rather than genuine tax enforcement. The selective targeting of specific parties further erodes public trust in the impartiality of governmental institutions. The detention of Arvind Kejriwal, a prominent opposition figure known for his electoral victories against the BJP in Delhi, is particularly troubling. His incarceration on seemingly dubious charges reeks of political retribution and undermines the principles of democratic governance. The curtailment of his powers as Chief Minister and the centralization of authority in the Lieutenant Governor’s office represent a dangerous deviation from established norms of federalism.

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Moreover, the intertwining of financial penalties with political motives, as evidenced by the pardoning of individuals associated with the ruling party after substantial donations, further underscores the erosion of ethical boundaries within Indian politics. Such actions not only tarnish the reputation of the government but also undermine the very foundations of parliamentary democracy. As we approach the Lok Sabha election, it is imperative that the ECI and the SC uphold the integrity of the electoral process. Political parties must be held accountable for their finances, and transparency should be paramount to ensure a level playing field for all contestants. The allegations of tax terrorism and political oppression must be thoroughly investigated, and those responsible held accountable to restore faith in democratic institutions. The recent developments in Indian politics serve as a stark reminder of the fragility of democratic values in the face of unchecked power. It is incumbent upon all stakeholders, from political leaders to civil society, to safeguard the principles of accountability, transparency, and fairness that form the cornerstone of a vibrant democracy. Anything less would be a disservice to the ideals upon which our nation was founded.

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The Hills Times
The Hills Timeshttps://www.thehillstimes.in/
The Hills Times, a largely circulated English daily published from Diphu and printed in Guwahati, having vast readership in hills districts of Assam, and neighbouring Nagaland, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur.
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