Budget Expectations: Before the general budget, some non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have suggested steps to be taken for the betterment of the country’s elderly population.
These include measures to increase old age pension, additional income tax relief and exemption of Goods and Services Tax (GST) on products frequently used by older people.
Know which NGO raised this demand
NGO Agewell Foundation said that in view of the increasing gap between old and young generation, changes in the lifestyle of older people in the light of longer life span, favorable provisions should be made in the budget. The Foundation said in a statement that it is necessary to engage with a large number of retired people to keep them continuously active.
The Foundation has appealed to the Finance Ministry and other stakeholders to consider its recommendations and suggestions while finalizing the next budget. The statement said that the old age pension should be revised according to the current inflation.
Demand to increase the share of old age pension to Rs 3000
“The present share of the central government in the monthly old age pension should be increased to Rs 3,000 per month for each eligible old age person. The state government should also be advised to revise its share accordingly,” the statement said. Apart from this, the foundation has demanded an increase in the interest rate on bank, post office and other deposit and investment schemes for the elderly as part of financial security measures. It has been said that more relief should be given in income tax, especially for old people.
GST exemption should be given on these products
The NGO also sought GST exemption on services and products frequently used by the elderly such as audit diapers, medicines, healthcare equipment like wheelchairs and walkers, hospitalization of elderly patients above 70 years, mediclaim policies and medical consultation fees Key’s.