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Rs 15 lakh claim was based on ‘illustrative’ figures: Govt

Rs 15 lakh claim was based on ‘illustrative’ figures: Govt
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, while replying to questions in Rajya Sabha on black money stashed abroad, said authorities have  so far detected “an income which is evaded to the extent of Rs 3250 crore for which there is a tax impact” and proceedings have been initiated against the defaulters.

“Let me assure the members that nobody which is part of the HSBC list against whom evidence is forthcoming is going to be spared,” he said. On questions about the basis for Modi’s contention that each citizen could get Rs 15 lakh if entire black money stashed abroad was unearthed, Jaitley said, “...it is an illustrative statement which indicates that if any of those versions (of black money stashed abroad) are accepted, then pro-rata that is the benefit which accrues to citizen of India.

“It is a statement which has been made by several people in that context and it must be taken entirely in that context.” Modi had made such a statement during electioneering for last year’s Lok Sabha elections.

Jaitley said all efforts are being made to bring to book those who have been named in the HSBC bank list of black money holders and there are evidence against them.

Govt ready to send Mines bill to Select Panel

Faced with the prospect of an embarrassment in Rajya Sabha, government bowed to the opposition demand for sending the Mines and Minerals bill to a Select Committee after hours of battle of wits between rival sides. The government tried to stonewall the opposition demand for sending the Mines and Minerals Amendment Bill, 2015 to a Select Committee and kept pressing for its passage.

New schemes for EBCs: Minister

Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment, Krishan Pal Gurjar on Tuesday said that there were two new schemes for the welfare of Economically Backward Classes (EBCs) which have been launched in 2014-15. In a written reply to a question in Lok Sabha he said, “ The two new schemes include -  Dr. Ambedkar Central Sector Scheme of Interest Subsidy on Educational Loan for Overseas Studies for Economically Backward Classes (EBCs) and secondly Dr. Ambedkar Post-Matric Scholarship for the Economically Backward Class Students.” “Further, the Government of India through Ministry of Human Resource Development runs a Mid-Day Meal Scheme under which mid day meal is provided on each school day at prescribed norms to children studying in the classes I- VIII,” added Gurjar.

108 Def personnel committed suicide in 2014

A total of 108 personnel from Army and Air Force committed suicide in the last one year and the reasons range from long deployment, domestic problems and inability to withstand stress, the Rajya Sabha or Upper House was informed on Tuesday.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said in a written reply that as on November 21, 2014, 84 personnel from Army and 24 from the Air Force committed suicides. The Navy did not report any such incident. “Reasons for such incidents include long tenures of continuous deployment, domestic problems, perceived grievances, personal issues, mental built, financial problems and inability to withstand stress,” he said. He said government has taken various measures to prevent suicides by personnel such as improved living and working conditions, additional family accommodation, liberalised leave policy, setting up a grievance redressal mechanism and provision for psychological counselling. 

‘Betterment of minorities prime focus’

The Ministry of Minority Affairs has a sanctioned strength of 98 regular officers, out of which 66 deal with the matters relating to the notified and linguistic Minorities in the country efficiently. “Continuous attempts are made to fill up the vacant posts. However, contractua personnel are engaged on need basis to augment the manpower required normal functioning of the Ministry. The computers, printers,fax,machines,and internet connections have been provided to the officers and staff of the Ministry along with backup support from NIC,” Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, the Minister of State for Minority Affairs said in Rajya Sabha on Tuesday.

Meanwhile talking about the improvements in standards of Muslims in the country, the minister said, “The focus of the Government is to improve the educational and skill level of minority communities for their gainful employment leading to improvement in the overall condition of minorities.” He added that for welfare of minority communities, the ministry implements various programmes and schemes.
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