n18
NEWS|Current Affairs 
   |

The Empowered Committee of state finance ministers today unanimously decided to keep petroleum and alcohol out of the proposed Goods and Service Tax stating that these were the main sources of income for states. "There is total unanimity that these (petroleum and alcohol) should be kept out of GST," Abdul Rahim Rather, chairman of the empowered committee of state finance ministers, told reporters here. Rather, who is also the finance minister of Jammu and Kashmir, said that the decision to exclude these two items from the proposed GST was based on an appeal made by states. The central government, in its revised draft of the constitution amendment bill, had proposed that fuel and liquor should be brought under the ambit of GST. "These are the main sources of income for the states and if they (petroleum and alcohol) are included in the GST the states will stand to lose a lot," he said. Among the other core issues tackled on the first day of the two-day meeting here were regarding setting up of an independent mechanism to pay compensation to states that stood to lose with the introduction of the GST, the chairman of the empowered committee said. He said the provision of Rs 9,000 crore in the last budget signified that the compensation would be paid to states. Rather also said that the committee had decided that there should not be a 'reprovision' about declared goods and that the Centre should not have powers to declare certain goods as 'goods with special importance'. States were also opposing subsuming of entry taxes levied on goods entering from other states and that the original draft be incorporated in the new draft to offset revenue losses. Opposing the proposed incorporation of 92 D and 54 A in the proposed bill, Rather said, "The Committee felt that these are not needed at all because proposed Article 246 A of the Amendment Bill gives powers to Government of India as also to the states to introduce GST." The Committee also expressed reservation on restriction of powers of the proposed GST council to recommend any special provisions, like an exemption from tax to a state without the Centre's consent. "There was total consensus that since our country is essentially a federation, nothing should be done that will go against the states," the chairman said. Among the other issues resolved were the acceptance of the recommendations of the Committee constituted by the Empowered Committee on September 19.

Ukraine rebels say they are poised to recapture Donetsk airport

from firstpost

Ukraine rebels say they are poised to recapture Donetsk airport

BRUSSELS/DONETSK Ukraine (Reuters) - EU officials proposed sanctions on Tuesday to starve Russian firms of cash as punishment for Moscow's role in Ukraine, where rebels said they were storming Donetsk...


EU proposes tough sanctions on Moscow as Ukraine rebels advance

from firstpost

EU proposes tough sanctions on Moscow as Ukraine rebels advance

BRUSSELS/KIEV (Reuters) - European officials proposed sweeping new sanctions on Tuesday to starve Russia's companies of capital and technology as punishment for Moscow's intervention in Ukraine, where...

Islamic State group may have beheaded another US journalist

from firstpost

Islamic State group may have beheaded another US journalist

Beirut: An Internet video purports to show the beheading of US journalist Steven Sotloff by the Islamic State group.Sotloff, who freelanced for Time and Foreign Policy magazines, had last been seen in...

Madras HC exempts Nithyananda personal appearance in court

from firstpost

Madras HC exempts Nithyananda personal appearance in court

Chennai: The Madras High Court today exempted self-styled godman Nithyananda from a personal appearance before a court in Coimbatore.Justice KBK Vasuki, who passed the order on a petition filed by Nit...

Pakistan should improve internal situation, says Omar Abdullah

from firstpost

Pakistan should improve internal situation, says Omar Abdullah

Jammu: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah today hit out at Pakistan saying it should try toimprove its internal situation rather than resort to firing and shelling villages here."Thei...

PM Modi displays skills as a drummer with Japanese percussionists

from firstpost

PM Modi displays skills as a drummer with Japanese percussionists

Tokyo: Prime Minister Narendra Modi's skills as a drummer were today on full display here as he joined the Japanese percussionists to perform a 'jugalbandi' with them.The 63-year-old leader gave tough...

Government aims to eradicate Kala-azar by 2015, says Harsh Vardhan

from firstpost

Government aims to eradicate Kala-azar by 2015, says Harsh Vardhan

Patna: The government aims to eradicate the dreaded disease 'Kala-azar' or Visceral Leishmaniasis,also known as 'Black Fever' and 'Dumdum Fever' from India by 2015.The central government has formulate...