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Mahinda employs Goebbels theory to tarnish govt :Mangala charges

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Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera has charged that the former President Mahinda Rajapkase was using Goebbels theory of deceit to tarnish the Government and mislead the masses.

He was addressing Parliament on Thursday. During his address, he said: "Goebbels once said that if you repeat a lie continuously, it ultimately becomes the truth. Former President Rajapaksa is using this theory to discredit the Government. His Government practiced  He claims that the cost of living has increased. It is good. At least now he is taking note of the cost of living since during his presidency, he ate off of the people's money. His lackeys, too, are spreading the same lie. However, he still has not even responded to my challenge to debate the country's financial situation now in comparison to it during his Presidency.

When we took over the government, a kilo of red rice was sold at Rs. 91, but today, it is between Rs. 85-86 per kilo. Samba was Rs. 97 and today it sells for Rs. 90. Sugar was Rs. 100, while today it sells at Rs. 108 per kilo. Potatoes was Rs. 104 per kilo earlier and today its Rs. 89, while coconuts have been reduced to Rs. 75. The majority of 90% of the population are not farmers, but we have granted concessions to the farmers.

The former President says he will reduce taxes by 20%; but this would mean that he would have to increase indirect taxes, such as VAT, exponentially. He has not revealed any plans on how he would manage the economy by reducing taxes this way. Rajapaksa should know that prices of many food items are still lower than it was during his time.

Moreover, the Minister said that the Government hopes to reduce indirect taxes by 2.5% and increase taxes by the year 2020. 40,000 new income revenue files have been opened during the first month after implementing the new Income Revenue Act on 1 April. Our aim is to increase direct taxes and reduce indirect taxes by 2.5% by 2020. The Government would bring in new legislation to amend the tax levied on royalties. We accept that the tax imposed on royalties is not fair. We will bring an amendment regarding that soon. If Rajapaksa has concerns, he is always welcome to present his ideas to us."

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