#MyVote2019 – ‘GST Helpful In Long Run’

Prashant Rawat, 24, Footwear Shop Owner, Uttar Pradesh   The Modi government’s policies and initiatives have benefited me. There have been a few initial hiccups, but then life has only become easier. Take demonetisation for example. In the early days of demonetisation, people from all walks of life, and not just businessmen like me, faced problems. The move had brought our everyday lives to a standstill. But in hindsight, I feel it was a blessing in disguise for me. The move helped me switch to digital money. I started electronic payment facility in my shop. Now about 50 percent of my customers prefer e-payment over cash. The Goods and Services Tax (GST) also came with its own package of initial hiccups. Once we understood the tax slabs, things got easier for us and helped us in our business. Earlier a service tax of 12 percent was charged on all footwear products. Now, goods up to Rs 500 come under a tax slab of 5 percent; and footwear above costing Rs 500 come under the 12 percent bracket. My shop is frequented more by people from lower middle and middle class. And they prefer buying products that are cheaper and priced below Rs 500. So a good chunk of sale in my shop is of products priced below Rs 500 and the benefit of a lower GST of  5 percent is thus, passed on to the customers. There is also an additional benefit – we also make it a point to inform our high-end customers (who purchase goods priced over Rs 500) about the tax slab and the benefit of buying a product worth Rs 500 or less. Some of them happily agree and buy a pair of slippers or sandals in addition to what they have already bought. The Modi government has also been successful in implementing the Swachha Bharat campaign. My shop is located in a busy market with all kind of shops such as, eateries, groceries, wholesale, etc. Earlier there was no provision for dumping garbage. Heaps of garbage would pile up right at the entrance of the market. Also an open nallah (sewage canal) passing adjacent to the market used to drive away customers. Now you can see these dustbins — both for wet and dry waste installed around the market. Representatives from the municipality too, visit us on a regular basis to make sure the market is cleaned up properly. I would give Modi, eight out of 10 marks for the Swachha Bharat campaign. Modi should be given another term since I do not see a better candidate to fit the bill.]]>

#MyVote2019 – ‘I Have Full Faith In Modi’

Pawan Kumar Mandal, 34, Furniture Store Owner Deoghar, Jharkhand   I started taking an active interest in politics after Modiji came to power. I heard his speeches and I felt that he was speaking to me directly. He made me feel that my voice mattered too. His voice resonates with the masses and that is the reason why I would want him to become the Prime Minister once again. The Modi government’s Swachha Bharat campaign has worked, at least in my mohalla at Tiwari Chowk in Deoghar. There has been a marked difference in the way the waste is managed here now. Earlier, garbage would be left on the roadsides to rot and would be picked up after a gap of many, many days. But now, the municipality workers come every day at a fixed time to pick up the garbage. The street lights here are working and the women in my family feel safe to venture outside at night. I’m a shop-owner and I was pretty inconvenienced by the Goods and Services Tax (GST) when it was introduced. I suffered losses in the beginning because nobody was really able to understand the sudden rise in the prices of goods, the new billing invoices etc. But the sales tax officer of our area turned out to be a saviour. He helped all the shop owners in my area get acquainted with the process. In turn, we were able to explain the new tax structure to our customers. I am a happy man now and have no regrets about voting for Modiji. He wishes the good for the country and his actions mean business. Detractors often argue about the ‘disastrous demonetisation’ but I believe the decision was a step in the right direction. People will now think twice before hoarding money. I am not going to get into the other details of demonetization because, frankly, it is a vast topic and I am not really an expert. Petrol prices of late have definitely been bothersome. But I do not let that bother me. I like how Modiji is leading the country and would want him to continue. I don’t hate the leaders of the Opposition parties, but you can say that I love Modiji’s personality more. He has the qualities of a true leader. I sometimes wish I could be as decisive as he is. Rahul Gandhi, I feel, still has a long way to go before he can even think of leading the country. His heart is in the right place, but he lacks the spark.]]>