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Petitioner requests tax exemption for those making less than Rs 8 lakh, citing EWS criteria.

A Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) official filed a petition with the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court asking for an exemption from income tax for those making less than Rs 8 lakh per year.


In response to the Supreme Court decision designating families with a gross annual income of less than Rs 8 lakh as belonging to the economically weaker section of society, Kunnur Seenivasan, a member of the Assets Protection Council of the DMK, filed a petition claiming that a provision of the Finance Act, 2022, requiring individuals with an annual income of more than 2.5 lakh to pay income tax, is ‘ultra vires’ (EWS).


According to Bar and Panel, a bench of Justices R Mahadevan and J Sathya Narayana Prasad sent a notice to the Center and the Ministries of Law and Finance, requesting a response within four weeks.


The argument says that, ‘The government should not be allowed to collect income tax from individuals having income up to limit of Rs 7,99,999 as there is no rationality and equality in it’. ‘When the government fixed income criteria that a family having gross income up to the limit of Rs 7,99,999 is an economically weaker family for availing benefits under Economically Weaker Section (EWS) reservation.’


The 2019 announcement explains, a person would be considered EWS for the purpose of reservation if they were not eligible for the SCs, STs, or OBCs quota programme and their family’s gross annual income was less than Rs 8 lakh. In addition to defining ‘income’ and excluding some people from the EWS group if their families had certain specified assets, the government announcement provided specific definitions of ‘ income.’


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