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GST may be tweaked if needed, Says Gadkari



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New Delhi, June 30 : The GST may not be perfect and may cause some inconvenience initially but the government will make amendments if that happened, Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Friday.

“I won’t say that it (GST) is perfect or that people won’t face any kind of inconvenience initially. It is a beginning,” Gadkari said at the Aaj Tak GST Conclave.

“Some hard steps are needed to be taken but it will ultimately have a positive impact,” he said.

The Minister urged people to be open to the new tax reform and experience it for two months and promised that the government would make amendments if any problems arose during implementation.

The Minister said the Goods and Services Tax, touted as the single most significant tax reform since Independence, would put an end to black money, end “inspector raj” and bring transparency.

“I hope 99 per cent (transactions) will come under formal economy which would immensely benefit the nation.”

Gadkari added that bringing petrol and diesel under the GST net would increase the revenue of the states and it was for them to decide if they wanted to move in that direction.

He said 17 taxes and 22 types of cess would go due to GST implementation and the taxation system would become more efficient and simplified.

“We said that we would compensate states if their revenue decreases due to GST. But I believe that situation would never arise,” Gadkari said.

“In fact, revenue of the states would increase by 15 (to) 20 (to) 25 per cent.”

Gadkari said the move would also simultaneously boost the revenue of the central government, which would lead to a bigger annual budget, increase GDP and lower tax rates.

“Till now, we increased tax burden on those who paid their taxes honestly. Now (after GST) more people would come under the tax net and tax rates would come down.”



J&K: Two militants killed in Anantnag gunfight




Srinagar, March 24: Two terrorists were killed on Saturday in an encounter with the security forces in Jammu and Kashmir’s Anantnag district, police said.

“Security personnel from the Rashtriya Rifles, Central Reserve Police Force and the Special Operations Group (SOG) of the state police surrounded Shistargam village on Friday evening following information about a group of holed-up militants.

“As the cordon was tightened, the militants fired at the security forces triggering the gunfight,” police sources said.

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Fear that AI will take up both skilled & unskilled jobs: Rajan

We have to make sure Indian capital is available because often it is closest to the ground and understands the financing better




Kochi, Mar 23 : Former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan today expressed fears that Artificial Intelligence would take up jobs–both high skilled and unskilled.

With advances in Machine Learning,Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, this was going to change still further, as they take up the jobs,ranging from those in unskilled sweatshops to high-skilled professions like medicine, the former RBI Governor said.

“What jobs will humans be able to do in 10-15 years that are immune from threat?Jobs that require high intelligence and creativity; jobs that require human empathy and jobs where human working for us bolster our status in some way,” he said, delivering the keynote address outlining his vision for India at #FUTURE Global Digital Summit, organised by the Kerala government.

He, however, India has to embrace technology and become a leader in the digital transformation taking place around the globe without being bogged down by unfounded fears of job losses, incomes or machines replacing humans.

Among the biggest obstacles to technology adoption were fears of man being replaced by machines a fear that has existed since the industrial revolution,but never materialised. “Two hundred years since the industrial revolution, jobs are still around. People and society adapt to do the things that machines cannot do,” he said.

“With technology, across every job there is going to be a restructuring, taking away the routine aspects and leaving the creative and customised aspects of that job,” he said.

Currently Professor, Finance at University of Chicago, Booth School of Business, Rajan said that in every industrial country, more jobs have disappeared in routine skilled and non routine unskilled jobs, which has partly led to the anxieties.

The former RBI Governor said another aspect of the fear was where the incomes would come from; the answer to which was an assured Universal Basic Income.

In the Indian context, he said “we have a huge hunger for capabilities at every level. If we can create incomes at some level, the aspirations of people will ensure their children move up in life and get the opportunities that they did not.”

In terms of business opportunities, the government needs to do far more for start-ups to flourish in India by creating easy paths to incorporation and funding, he said.

Rajan said that one of the big lacunae in India was risk financing and so start-ups go elsewhere because they need risk financing, which was not available in the country.

“We have to make sure Indian capital is available because often it is closest to the ground and understands the financing better,” Rajan said.

“We have to make sure that the companies of our future are incorporated in India, get Indian financing and expand significantly. We cannot miss out on the AI and Robotics revolution,” he said.

Another significant area where India effectively needs a revolution is education and skill building, Rajan said.

“We need to remedy weaknesses in education at every stage, build more world-class institutions domestically and bring the talent back from abroad,” Rajan said.

“We are not as global as we should be even now. Too many of our people are too poorly educated or skilled to compete in a globalised tech-enabled economy,” Rajan noted.

“If we don’t do that we will end up with a two-tier economy of a few “haves” and a vast population of “have-nots”, which is neither socially stable nor desirable,”he said.

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Sonia Gandhi rushed back to Delhi, better now




March 23:  Senior Congress leader Sonia Gandhi, who was rushed to New Delhi from Shimla on Friday due to her ill health, is better now, said sources close to 10, Janpath.

Gandhi was in Shimla along with her daughter Priyanka Vadra, officials said.

She was initially taken to Chandigarh on Thursday night and from there the Congress leader was taken to New Delhi on a special aircraft.

“Since she (Sonia Gandhi) refused to get examined at Indira Gandhi Medical College (in Shimla) and insisted on reaching Chandigarh, she was taken to Chandigarh late in night and from there she was taken to New Delhi,” an official told IANS.

Gandhi and her daughter were staying at the Wildflower Hall, an Oberoi Group luxury resort.

Indira Gandhi Medical College and Hospital’s Medical Superintendent Ramesh Chand accompanied the Congress leader from Shimla to Chandigarh.

“Her condition was stable,” Chand told IANS.

Sonia Gandhi and her family arrived in Shimla on Wednesday and visited Charabra where Priyanka Vadra’s cottage is being constructed.


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