Tax* is an amount that you are required to pay, basis your income and consumption of goods and services. This amount paid by you is used by the government to support critical aspects of a nation's development, such as infrastructure, healthcare, education and defence.
A basic understanding of tax* planning and the taxation system is important for effective financial management and being a responsible citizen.
Meaning and Types of Taxes
There are two main categories of taxes, which are further subdivided into other categories.
Direct taxes are applied directly to individuals or organisations. They are generally applied directly to the taxpayer's income or wealth.
Indirect taxes are not directly applied to individuals or businesses. Instead, they are passed on to them through the prices of goods and services. Taxpayers pay these taxes when they make a purchase. Indirect taxes are divided into categories, such as customs duty, central excise duty, service tax, sales tax, Value Added Tax (VAT), Goods and Services Tax (GST) and more.
Benefits of Taxes
Below are some key benefits of taxes:
1. Controlling inflation:
When the government increases tax rates, individuals and businesses have to use more of their income towards paying taxes. This leaves them with a lesser amount in hand, thereby making them spend less. The lower demand for goods and services brings down prices and helps control inflation.
2. Addresses income inequalities:
Progressive tax systems, where higher-income individuals are taxed at higher rates, enable the government to collect more tax revenue from those who can afford to pay more. This helps bridge the income gap and improves the well-being of the overall society.
3. Development of the nation:
Taxes provide a steady income for the government. Taxes fund essential public services such as healthcare, education, sanitation, transportation and utilities. They are also used for infrastructure development, public services, national defence and administrative costs.
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*Tax benefits may be available as per prevailing tax laws. Tax benefits under the policy are subject to prevailing conditions and provisions of the Income Tax Act, 1961. Goods and Services Tax and Cesses, if any, will be charged extra as per applicable rates. The tax laws are subject to amendments made thereto from time to time. Please consult your tax advisor for details