Indian news on March 18, 2016

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Friday, March 18, 2016

  • NEW DELHI: KVP rate cut including NSC, MIA and Sukanya Samriddhi Account rates:: The Government has on Friday slashed interest rates on small savings schemes including Public Provident Fund and Kisan Vikas Patra. The new rates will come into effect on April 1, 2016 and will be valid till June 30. The rate under the PPF will be cut to 8.1 per cent for the period from April 1 to June 30 and from 8.7 per cent said Finance Ministry. The rate of interest will be cut from 8.7 to 7.8 per cent on KVPs and the five year NSC will be cut from 8.5 to 8.1 per cent. A five year Monthly Income Account will fetch 7.8 per cent as of from 8.4 per cent. Sukanya Samriddhi account will have an interest rate of 8.6 per cent as against 9.2 per cent while senior citizen savings scheme will earn 8.6 per cent compared to 9.3 per cent.
  • Supreme Court allows publication of pictures of Union Ministers, CMs, Governors and State Ministers:: The Supreme Court on Friday modifying its earlier order allowed that the pictures of Union Ministers, Chief Ministers, Governors and State Minister can now appear in government advertisements. The judgement came on pleas by Centre and States that had sought a review of the Supreme Court judgement barring publication of leaders’ photos in advertisement except those of the President, Prime Minister and Chief Justice of India saying it infringed fundamental rights and federal structure.
  • Indian Railways to drop second panty car on shorter routes:: The Railway Ministry will soon do away with one pantry car in eight Rajadhani trains that have two pantry cars and will eventually offer passengers an option to opt out of the meals provided on board the Shatabdi, Rajdhani and Duronto trains. As of now, 21 pairs of Rajadhani trains are offering the services. The Rajadhani trains that will have one pantry car instead of two will be August Kranti Rajadhani, Mumbai Rajadhani, Patna Rajdhani, Ahmedabad Rajdhani, Howrah Rajdhani, Sealdah Rajadhani, Guwahati Rajdhani and Dibrugarh Rajdhani.
  • MUMBAI: Maharashtra government allocates Rs.25,000 crore for agriculture sector:: The Maharashtra Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar on Friday presented the State budget with a Rs.25,000 crore allocation for agriculture sector. This is the second budget of the BJP government in the Assembly with an estimated revenue deficit of Rs.3,757 crore but revised to Rs.9,209 crore mainly due to relief packages for drought affected farmers in over 15,000 villages.
  • BENGALURU: Karnataka Government abolishes agriculture income tax:: Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah in his State budget speech for 2016-17 on Friday proposed to abolish agriculture income tax. The total budget is pegged at Rs.1,63,419 crore of which the plan size is fixed at Rs.85,375 crore an increase of 17.6 per cent over the last year. He proposed to set up a Karnataka State Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Committee headed by the Chief Minister. The budget proposed to develop 100 villages in four districts across four revenue divisions as Model Agricultural villages under the ‘Suvarna Krishi Grama Programme’. The budget exempted from the tax handmade paper and hade made paper boards. The VAT on office files made of paper was reduced to 5.5 per cent. Outstanding loans with interest of Rs.473 crore lakh by fisheries cooperative societies to be waived, Karnataka State Warehouse Corporation will convert 20 per cent capacity into cold storage facilities, Skill Development and Livelihood department would be set up, Bengaluru One centres in each ward of city are among others.

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