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India News

Corporate tax, basic customs duty cut, service tax increased

New Delhi : Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Saturday proposed to cut the corporate tax rate by five percent to 25 percent over next four years while increasing the service plus education cess from 12.36 percent to a consolidated 14 percent.

Presenting the budget for 2015-16 in parliament, Jaitley said the direct taxation should match the transformation in indirect taxes expected to be brought in by the introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST) April 1, 2016 onwards.

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Loans, scholarships to help needy students

New Delhi : The government will set up an authority to administer and monitor scholarship as well educational loan schemes, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said Saturday.

"With a view to enabling all poor and middle class students to pursue higher education of their choice without any constraint of funds, I propose to set up a fully IT-based Student Financial Aid Authority to administer and monitor scholarship as well educational loan schemes, through the Pradhan Mantri Vidya Lakshmi Karyakram," Jaitley said.

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Nothing for us in budget, rues farmers' body

Nagpur : Farmers leaders here Saturday criticized the Union budget saying Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has "failed to give the much-needed healing touch" to the agriculture fraternity.

"There is no announcement to fulfil Prime Minister Narendra Modi's pre-poll promise of farm loan waivers and giving minimum support prices as per a proposed formula of investment plus 50 percent returns...," Vidarbha Jan Andolan Samiti President Kishore Tiwari said.

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Over 80,000 secondary schools to be upgraded

New Delhi : Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Saturday said the government was committed to providing quality education and planned to upgrade over 80,000 secondary schools in the country.

Presenting the Union Budget 2015-16 in the Lok Sabha, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said educating and skilling the youth to enable them to get employment is the "altar before which we must all bow".

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Air India to get Rs.2,500 crore of fresh equity

New Delhi : Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Saturday proposed infusion of an additional equity of Rs.2,500 crore in the cash-strapped national passenger carrier Air India for 2015-16 fiscal.

According to the expenditure budget document, a budgetary support of Rs.2,500 crore has been earmarked for equity infusion in Air India.

Indian-origin man sues Canadian government over wrongful conviction

Ottawa : An Indo-Canadian man has sued the Canadian federal government over his wrongful conviction in a sexual assault case, a media report said.

Gurdev Singh Dhillon, a former Surrey resident who spent three years in jail for a rape he did not commit and who was subsequently deported, is now suing the provincial and federal governments, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Crown prosecutor Don Wilson and his former defence lawyer Sukhjinder Grewal, Canada's South Asian Observer reported Friday.

Budget 2015 aims for Green India

New Delhi : Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Saturday said Clean Energy cess on coal will be increased by Rs.100 per metric tonne to fund clean environment initiatives.

"In indirect taxes, I propose to increase the Clean Energy cess from Rs.100 to Rs.200 per metric tonne of coal to finance clean environment initiatives," Jaitley said while presenting the union budget for 2015 in the Lok Sabha.

He said the excise duty on sacks and bags of polymers of ethylene other than for industrial use is being increased from 12 to 15 percent.

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Consolidated Budget Highlights

New Delhi: Highlights of the budget for 2015-16 presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in the Lok Sabha on Saturday:

* Personal income tax rates unchanged

* Increase in limit of deduction in health insurance from Rs.15,000 to Rs.25,000

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Goa CM implores against communally sensitive comments

Panaji: No one should make statements which can disturb the communal harmony in Goa said Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar, even as the VHP Friday commented that it would make efforts to re-convert Goan Christians to Hinduism.

Parsekar, however, said that no action could be taken against the Vishwa Hindu Parishad spokesperson because free speech was a fundamental right.

"I feel as chief minister that nobody should make any statement that would disturb or affect the communal harmony?" Parsekar told IANS late Friday.

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Shutdown over ban on Togadia hits normal life in Kandhamal

Bhubaneswar: The day-long shutdown called by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) to protest against the ban on the entry of its top leader Pravin Togadia hit normal life in Odisha's Kandhamal district Saturday, police said.

People and commercial vehicles stayed off the roads in most places including the district headquarter town of Phulbani. Shops, hotels and business establishments also downed shutters, district superintendent of police Kanwar Vishal Singh told IANS.

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