Earlier today, the Congress government in Punjab announced that people in Punjab will have to pay tax for having domestic animals. These taxes were in range of Rs 250 per year for having small animals like dogs, cats, pigs, sheep, etc. and Rs 500 per year for bigger animals like buffaloes, cows, camels, horses, elephants, etc.
Apart from the taxes, the state government also announced that an identification mark or number will be given to each animal and a ‘microchip will be installed’ in the animal, though it’s not clear whether it is to track moments of the animals or to detect any ‘tax evasion’.
The step left Twitter users with deep amusement and some anger too. Not only the tax rule didn’t differentiate whether a domestic animal was pet or part of vocation of a poor family, it also didn’t go down well with animal lovers, especially the dog lovers, who didn’t like the idea of a ‘microchip being installed’. There were a range of reactions to this step, such as:
— ECOR RIGHT WINGER (@1LifeYSoSerious) October 24, 2017
Microchip inside animal! What kind of sick, degenerate level cruelty is the Congress govt indulging in https://t.co/cTDy3cxP40
— Hemant (@bija_hem) October 24, 2017
Cows will get Unique ID – ‘kya chutiyaap hai ye Modi’.
Branding Code will be given to each animal – ‘Welcome move by RaGa’. ??✌️✌️ https://t.co/6nQNe376VG
— Baccha Yadav (@sk00monu) October 24, 2017
Some wondered about the categorization of some animals in the tax structure:
How are deer and Elephant domestic animals? https://t.co/YJ7V2aLuPA
— Sai Agarwal (@Imsaiagarwal) October 24, 2017
— Man Key ??? (@HospitalBaba) October 24, 2017
Punjab government was bashed for the proposal, which was seem anti-poor and anti-farmer:
Anti farmer punjab government, now a poor farmer can not own domestic animals. https://t.co/DfEumC5dP4
— Pawan Dutta?? (@drpwndutta) October 24, 2017
— Amit Joshi (@Amit_Joshi07) October 24, 2017
Congress as a political party also drew flak, as only yesterday its Vice President Rahul Gandhi mocked GST as “Gabbar Singh Tax”. So what to call this new tax by Punjab government?
GST = Gai Sheep Tax https://t.co/aj3be7rOHz
— Rahul Roushan (@rahulroushan) October 24, 2017
— The Delhi Lawyer (@delhi_lawyer) October 24, 2017
Congress will have to pay a lot, they have so many “Paltoo”. https://t.co/RSTFVBI3CK
— ग्रामीण (@Graaamin) October 24, 2017
And some Twitter users were already thinking too ahead:
Suppose you have a goat and you kill it for meat, will you get tax refund ? https://t.co/Ju2laWnva0
— Aficionado (@TheAngrezJailer) October 24, 2017
Please donate generously as Mogu & Chotu have to pay Rs 250/year as tax for keeping Ashutosh. pic.twitter.com/ZYELfOh4qz
— PhD in Bakchodi (@Atheist_Krishna) October 24, 2017
Animals should be linked to Aadhar card also by December 31st https://t.co/O27Ldp7HTe
— R ? (@reviewero) October 24, 2017
Update: Following widespread criticism and ridicule, Punjab government has denied reports about taxing domestic animals.