Maiden budget speech read by the Madam Finance Minister was innovative on many counts. Like she did not, even once, sipped the water during her 2 hours 10 minutes speech. Budget documents were brought to the house in a red cloth cover like a conventional bahi khata instead of an executive briefcase. Some Urdu shayaris, shloks were recited. A much noised five trillion economy was very much emphasized in the budget. The news and data analysis highlights of the budget speech stole the TV shows discussions.
But there were least discussed changes also. And these changes were the proposal to transfer the surplus find around 3100-3200 crores with SEBI to the consolidated fund of India. SEBI will have to get prior government approvals for its annual expenditure. These proposals will definitely dilute the powers of SEBI and government will dominate SEBI. SEBI is likely to be the proxy of the government if these proposals finally take place.
Is this the case of 3100 plus crores only which is a tiny thing compared to the size of Budget. The way, the proposed changes in SEBI is conspiring in nature. The government is bringing a change through the finance bill, not by an amendment in the SEBI act. These developments irked the SEBI employees and it’s chairman as well. The SEBI employees association and the SEBI chairman wrote separately to the Finance Minister to look into the matter and roll back the proposals. The employees association cited it (if the proposals take place) as an additional tax on the investors. The employees are apprehensive of diminishing of efficiencies and also drawn the attention towards the government commitment of minimum government maximum governance.
If you think the effect of the proposed changes is confined to the extent described above, innocent thinking. CBI, Income Tax and many agencies are used by political parties for different uses. In the future, is it not possible, the SEBI will also become his master’s voice. A backdoor political entry and control over corporate sector by politicians through SEBI cannot be ruled out in the future.
In stock markets, many animals are inculcated for stock market terminologies like bulls, bears, dark horse, bottom fishing, watchdog, etc. You may seldom recall when the bulls and bears were inculcated but can easily remember the deputation of a watchdog (SEBI). In the future, you will see another animal entering the market the FUNK LAMB. Yes, the watchdog (SEBI), will be converted into a funk lamb with budget proposals. Consequently, SEBI, an autonomous body will become a hemorrhaged body.
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