Address at the Central Excise Day celebrations organized by the Chief Commissioner Central Excise
Address by Shri CH Vidyasagar Rao at the Central Excise Day celebrations organized by the Chief Commissioner Central Exciseat Bhaidas Sabhagriha, Near Mithibai College, Vile Parle (West), Mumbai at 5 pm on 24 February 2016
Shri Sanjeev Behari, Principal Chief Commissioner, Customs Zone I & II, Shri Subhash Varshney, Chief Commissioner, Central Excise, Mumbai Zone I, Shri Devendra Singh, Chief Commissioner, Customs Zone III, Shri Piyush Pattanaik, Chief Commissioner, Service Tax, senior officers and staff of Central Excise and Service Tax, family members of all staff and officers, ladies and gentlemen,
I am very happy to be here to share your joy on the occasion of Central Excise Day celebrations. I extend my warm felicitations to each one of you on this day. I am particularly happy that some of the most efficient members of the staff and officers are being honuored today.
The contribution of the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) to the national exchequer is of a very high order. I was pleased to note that the CBEC collected approximately Rs.Six Lakh crore in taxes in 2014-15 of which the share of Central Excise Duty alone was Rs 2 lakh Crore. You are therefore silent movers of the economy, and contributors to the progress and development of India.
I have come here to congratulate each one of you and to tell you that I am proud of you, and the nation is proud of you for your services to the nation.
Ladies and gentlemen,
We are meeting at a juncture when India’s economy is poised for a quantum leap. From being a developing country, we are marching towards becoming a developed country. The economic transformation that has taken place in the country over the last few years is mind boggling.
‘The Make in India week’ concluded last week provided us a glimpse of the investment that is likely to come. The Make in India Week witnessed a business commitment of Rs.15.20 lakh crore in investment. The State of Maharashtra alone attracted investment worth Rs 8 lakh crore across various sectors.
The Hon’ble Prime Minister has unveiled the Start Up India, Stand Up India programme to give a boost to entrepreneurship. The Hon’ble Prime Minister has announced plans to facilitate and support such ventures that would boost employment generation and wealth creation.
As one of the most youthful nations having an average age of 29 years and having a large pool of professionally educated and skilled manpower, India is in the most enviable position to emerge as the start-up capital of the world.
While the opportunities are exciting, a lot more still needs to be done to improve the ‘ease of doing business’ in India. According to the ranking compiled by the World Bank, India is ranked 130 in the ease of doing business. We need drastic changes in some areas to further improve the ease of doing business in the country. We must have a simple, convenient, fair and non-adversarial tax administration. It would be ideal if your department begins the process to identify and remove bottlenecks and makes maximum use of Information Technology to make tax payment easier.
Among nations of the world, India has one of fastest growing services sector with annual growth rate of above 9%, whose contribution to GDP has been only increasing every year. The growth of services sector offers opportunities as well as challenges to bring under the tax net hitherto uncovered services.
Advances in digital technology have changed the way the world is doing business. E Commerce has emerged as the biggest winner in the shopping revolution. E Commerce giants like Alibaba, Amazon, eBay, Flipkart, Snapdeal and others have changed the dynamics of buying and selling goods.
The Service Tax department collects Service Tax from perhaps the largest number of citizens. It becomes incumbent upon you to provide the best service to the taxpayer. In this connection, I am happy to note that CBEC has already set up the Directorate of Taxpayer Services, which is a step in the right direction.
The proposed Goods and Service Tax is a part of the tax reforms that centre around evolving an efficient and harmonized consumption tax system in the country. I was glad to read from the newspapers that the bill is likely to passed in the current session. I will call upon you to prepare yourselves for this change, so that the transition to the new regime – as and when it is accepted – is smooth and seamless for the taxpayer.
The role of training and refresher training for the updation of knowledge in the core subject and technical knowledge for officers and staff cannot be overstated. I want the Department to stay ahead of all and make your mark in the world through your efficient services to the nation.
With these words, I compliment all of you on this happy occasion and wish you success in your future endeavours. I also wish you a memorable evening of cultural programmes.
Jai Hind ! Jai Maharashtra !!