Joseph Bhaskar Iswariah, 93, a celebrated retired Major General of the Indian Army, is settled in Coimbatore. With years of experience, Iswariah has been investing mostly in traditional fixed-income products. While serving the Army, his finance team would help him with his tax compliance and investment decisions. After retirement, he was living on his pension, which was taking care of his monthly expenses. He did not take much interest in financial matters. When Rowthri Sivashanmugam of RP Investment Services met him, Iswariah’s investment portfolio largely comprised of bank deposits, unsecured Non-Convertible Debentures (NCDs), and high-risk Portfolio Management Services (PMS). With regular fixed income products, Iswariah had a healthy tax bill every year.
Sivashanmugam had several rounds of interactions with Iswariah, which helped her understand his financial needs better. It was evident that Iswariah’s needs were limited. His investments were supposed to be passed on to the next generation - his son, two daughters, and the grandchildren. However, his tax payments were reducing the effective returns on his investments. It was important to devise a suitable strategy to grow the existing investment portfolio. Iswariah was worried about his high tax outgo. To address these concerns, the tax incidence on existing investments was reviewed and switched to more tax-efficient options.
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