It refers to out-of-proportion media-reporting about celebrity cricket-icon Sachin Tendulkar donating his entire salary of rupees ninety lakhs received as Rajya Sabha member to Prime Minister Relief Fund (PMRF). Perhaps, not much higher amount could purchase such an enormous media-publicity as was there by simple donation of a meagre sum of just rupees ninety lakhs. Real donation would be some percentage of his annual income regularly to PMRF. Big question is who leaked news of rupees ninety lakh donation to media. Donations made also for publicity are in fact promotional expenses rather than charity.
It is noted that there was also a case of tax-evasion in respect of Ferrari car where ultimately the government provided relief by bringing about an amendment to section 25(2) of the Customs Act giving government sweeping powers to allow customs duty exemptions on a case-to-case basis, with reasons to be recorded in every case. Earlier, Fiat company offered to pay the tax to avoid cricket-icon from paying the tax.
It would have been better if Sachin Tendulkar in view of his poor attendance-record in Rajya Sabha would have made a public statement requiring government not to nominate celebrities in Rajya Sabha just to add one more feather in their caps. Such a timely statement would have saved nation crores of rupees on a nominated Rajya Sabha member which in fact is much-much higher than a nominal salary-amount of just rupees ninety lakhs.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)