Getting a Maruti car was difficult even for an IAS officer in the early 1990s, Revenue Secretary Tarun Bajaj said on Wednesday, recalling how he fought for one himself. Bajaj, who was speaking at the 61st SIAM Convention today, told an anecdote from the 90s when he tried to buy a Maruti car.
“I asked Mr Bhargava for a Maruti car in 1994 and he said we only give cars to the co-secretaries and above and you are an undersecretary,” he said.
In addition, at the conference, industry stalwarts RC Bhargava and Venu Srinivasan expressed concerns about the high taxes and regulatory costs contributing to the current decline in demand in the automotive industry.
At the industry’s request for tax relief, Bajaj said such an intervention was unlikely only for the auto sector.
“The government cannot do a simple intervention to reduce taxes. Ongoing borrowing will come back to haunt us, ”the revenue secretary said.
“I want to understand what happened after 2017-2018, car sales have dropped significantly. If the price elasticity is so high in the automotive industry, then why are SUV sales so high,” Bajaj asked at the 61st SIAM Convention.
(Edited by : Ajay Vaishnav)