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(From Business Line)
It is essential that the Finance Minister hears those who are likely to be affected by the decisions taken by his Ministry. Hence, various chambers of commerce, industry and trade, as also professional associations should continue to be invited to forward their memoranda before the Budget, says V. K. Srinivasan.
THE news that the Finance Minister, Mr Jaswant Singh, has decided to discontinue the practice of pre-Budget consultations with groups of industrialists, agriculturists and economists, mentioned in the recollections of the former Union Finance Secretary, Mr S. Venkitaramanan (Business Line, December 23), has since been confirmed by another report (Business Line, January 4).
The Finance Minister's letter to 150 experts in agriculture, small-scale industries, economy, and industry, as also representatives of financial institutions indicates that written comments are "far more relevant and useful" than meetings, and that meetings do not provide adequate time or opportunity for individuals to express their views in a focused and satisfactory manner.
With my experience as one among the group of Finance Ministry officials that framed the Budget during the tenure of C. Subrahmaniam and later H. M. Patel …