Staying fit and healthy gets cheaper in Jammu and Kashmir: Drabu

Srinagar, May 30 :  Healthcare is set to get cheaper in Jammu and Kashmir. The state government on Monday proposed tax exemption not only for hospitals but extended it to health clubs, gymnasiums, fitness, wellness and slimming centres also.

Presenting his second budget in the state assembly here, Finance Minister Haseeb Drabu said “the category of new exemptions” was being introduced to promote “overall wellbeing — health, entertainment, environment — of our people”.

“I propose to exempt all services rendered by the health clubs, gymnasiums, fitness, wellness centres, slimming centres from the levy of tax,” the economist-politician said.

He also proposed tax exemption for “all medical services provided by hospitals and nursing homes” to make “private health-care affordable” in a state known for its bad state of affairs of healthcare.

Drabu said the government also proposed reducing the rate of Value Added Tax (VAT) on “medical imaging equipments, X-ray machines, scanners, X-ray films and plates from 13.5 percent to five percent rate category”.

Tax exemption was also extended to those industries and sectors “that are in the throes of a crisis” and “these include carpets and agriculture”, the minster said.

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