BR1M seems a favourite topic of discussions in coffee shops because it affected most people: those who are eligible, those who are not eligible, and those in-between, either eligible but did not apply or ineligible but tried their luck. There were much confusion over whether it was meant for those 60 and above only, those who are below 60 but with dependents, and so on. The ambiguous conditions, if not, the lack of or poor definitions of the conditions, together with the poorly trained people in charge, had led to confusion of all and sundry. To those who know each other well, there were jealousies too, as to why some with means were acceptable while those who are genuinely poor and needy were rejected.
This is also the time for completion and submission of Tax Returns. There were some who did not apply for BR1M because of the fear of getting involved with the LHDN since they are not in their record. Some BR1M applicants were successful but got penalized for non-filing of tax returns or under-declared their incomes. Whether there was any connection between the two or mere coincidence, your guess is as good as mine. There were reports of tax officers going from one shop to another in Bercham, Ipoh recently. The LHDN employees must have been really busy these days, not only having to deal with the annual enquiries on tax returns, but those relating to BR1M recently. I believe they are also under pressure to find the money to fund our PM's generosity!
Many people who are employed are subjected to deductions of tax from their salaries. Their incomes are known and there is no room for evasion of tax, unless they have secret side incomes. They are naturally unhappy with those who are obviously making lots of money from their businesses, but judging from their acquisitions of properties and buying of luxury cars, are obviously under-declaring their incomes. It is obvious to those who know them but not necessarily those in LHDN. Some believe it is better not to declare and wait for LHDN to come after them and settle or 'kautim' with the officer in charge!
I believe BR1M appears to be good for the people but there might be an ulterior motive (besides trying to gain popularity for the GE) of adding more people to their database for the purpose of widening the tax net. In a way, this is good for the nation because those who are not paying income tax or under-declare their incomes are being unfair to those honest taxpayers.