A country like India is poised to become the next superpower. We are a rapidly developing nation because of our readiness to adapt and grow under any and all circumstance. While there is a more significant transformation happening to become a developed nation soon, revenues from tax receipts are severely low, almost appalling.
Only 1.97% of our population are taxpayers. Even if we take out children along with retired people as 50% of our population and unemployed people as another 20% of the population, more than 28% of earning community in our country is not paying tax.
However, this does not stop them from enjoying civic amenities like roads, power, buses, railways, parks and all other public services.
When we see a dug up road that takes a long time to patch up, we see the apathy of an irresponsible bunch of citizens who have the time to complain but not so much to bring their earnings into the system. The tax obtained from even just half of these individuals can help shape the nation’s growth, but these people lack the long-term vision required to understand that a better nation cannot be achieved by building walls around ourselves.
In a way, it can be said that the 1.97% of the responsible population is feeding these irresponsible citizens. As the tiny percentage of taxpayers slowly begins to grow, either through their willingness or government force, the balance will tilt the other way; people themselves will self-police and bring the evaders to task. That said, force measures can yield results only for some time, and people always find a way to evade tax no matter what norms are put into place. What is needed is a change in moral conduct, much like the Japanese who value their time immensely. To see this difference, we must educate our children and set the right examples for them to emulate. Remember, evading tax is a lot like living on the alms provided by responsible citizens, and no one wants to be a rich beggar.