So bitter was the opposition to income tax that 17 years after it was introduced, England’s Chancellor of the Exchequer (the equivalent of India’s finance minister) publicly burnt all income tax records. While the tax would be back, public irritation at the concept of taxes itself would survive. In India, it tends to peak annually at budget time.
As Finance Minister Arun Jaitley rose to present his budget speech, Twitter ensured a steady stream of sarcasm.
In fact, the budget had a marked emphasis on taxing the urban middle class.
The budget also had a marked tilt towards the populist, introducing a long term irrigation fund and Rs 5,500 crore for crop insurance, irritating some of the more free market supporters of the government and being a possible reason for the stock market tanking.
There were some potshots for the ruling party and the finance minister as well.
But, as every year, corporate India fell over itself in trying to praise the budget – making for some humour.
All of it was summed up by this marvel of sardonicism.