Union Budget 2019: Why the Budget so scares me
The Budget reminds me each time, every year, how my entire education was a lie and I spent pointless hours chasing thetas and hexagons.
- Total Shares
There’s something about the word ‘Budget’ itself that runs a chill down my spine. I can sit through Annabelle and Conjuring — all parts — without losing even an hour of sleep later, but the very mention of the word ‘Budget’ sends me into panic mode.
Perhaps the juvenile association of the word with my struggle to make ends meet as a student — surviving on a never-enough allowance — can explain the phenomenon a bit. But even then, a lot remains outside the realm of my understanding.
Like the Union Budget itself. Or the interim Budget. Or any other goddamn Budget in-between.
For the Budget suddenly reminds you that your entire school life was a lie. Pages and pages of formulae, theories and graphs mugged up hoping to score decently in exams, the insatiable urge to always find that pesky X (or x) no matter where it hid, the pain it took to find the total surface area of a hexagon, heptagon or any other shape known to humankind, all that is actually worth nothing.
For the Budget reminds you that you were never taught what actually needed to be taught in math class.
If only the very scary Mathematics teacher had spent more time on how to do taxes rather than how to derive theta, today I would not be so dependant on my CA — the first person I am going to call frantically after the Budget is announced, who is obviously going to judge me for my lack of knowledge. He will then throw some incomprehensible jargon at me, confuse me further and leave me at the mercy of either Google or (friendly) mansplainers at the office to help me find out just how much of my money I am losing.
“Nirmala Sitharaman and Modi 2.0 might just increase the tax exemption slab in order to put more money in the hands of the people,” I read somewhere. Obviously, I want to know if that means I get to shop at Zara or Sarojini Nagar. Obviously, if I’m paying less tax — or no tax at all hopefully, thanks to the dream exemption — I’ll have more money to splurge! Heck, I might just buy myself those Steve Madden heels I’ve been eying for so long — if Nirmala ji would have it.
Another article informed me that corporate taxes might go down. To me, that’s as perplexing as the reason behind Kabir Singh’s murderous rage and angst. Corporate taxes might go down? Does that mean my company will save some tax money? Does that, in turn, mean that they will give me that lovely increment?!
Alright, Nirmala Sitharaman may not have the answer to whether I will have a good appraisal this year in her briefcase — but she sure has enough data and numbers and stats and figures in there to make me lose sleep.
Did you know GST does not come under this Budget? Well, I didn’t. So, I still don’t know if I have to continue killing my heart and soul — like I’ve been doing ever since GST came into existence — and refrain from drinking out or going to fancy brunches with my friends. This Budget, however, will ensure if drinking-in will also become unaffordable. And the answer to that is in Nirmala Sitharaman’s briefcase.
As is the answer to whether I should think of investing in a flat and then, a car, or just forget the damn thing and retire to a cave in the hills. There are few things chalked out for you in adult life: Marriage, job, kids, house, car — but not necessarily in that order. You're expected to hit all of these marks in order to be granted that all-important 'adult' status. While I killed the marriage and kids prospect myself — and I'm proud — will I at least be able to conquer the material world of adulthood?
Unfortunately all this overthinking is of no use, for Budget Day is back — along with all the horrors it brings with it every year.
Nope, I have no survival tips. I only have a running Netflix subscription, valid for another year.