Friday, February 2, 2001,
Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

HP extends tax concessions
Ministers to donate one-month salary
Tribune News Service

SHIMLA, Feb 1 ó Alarmed at the unprecedented destruction caused by the recent earthquake in Gujarat, the Himachal Pradesh Government has decided to take all necessary safeguards for buildings in the eventuality of tremors in the state, which falls in Zone 5 of the active seismic belt.

The decision was taken at a meeting of the Cabinet held under the chairmanship of Mr P.K. Dhumal, the Chief Minister, here last evening. The Town and Country Planning Department was directed to devise suitable safeguards to ensure construction of quake-resistant structures in the state. It was asked to put up a concrete proposal before the Cabinet at the next meeting.

The Cabinet also passed a resolution expressing sorrow over the heavy loss of life and property in the Gujarat earthquake and all ministers decided to donate their one monthís salary towards the relief fund. It also appealed to the people of the state to contribute generously to help the quake victims.

In an important decision to help new industrial units, it decided that units which had taken effective steps before April 1, 1999, but came into production subsequently would be given sales tax concessions, as per the pre-1999 policy. The state government had in the 1999 policy rationalised the sales tax incentives in accordance with national consensus. As per the latest decision, those entrepreneurs who had come forward to set up industrial units on the basis of incentives available under the pre-1999 policy would now be eligible for all those incentives and concessions.

The steps included registration of the industrial unit, taking possession of the land, placing of firm order for 50 per cent of the plant and machinery and investing 50 per cent of the total cost in building. The decision will benefit about 254 industrial units with an investment of Rs 66 crore coming into production between April 1, 1999, and March 31, 2001.

The Cabinet also decided to transfer 42.50 kanals of land along with the building belonging to the Himachal Pradesh Agro Industries Corporation to the Department of Language, Arts and Culture for the construction of a degree college building at Jawalaji.

It also decided to create 26 posts of medical officer (dental) class-1 in different hospitals and community health centres serving the rural areas of Himachal Pradesh and sanctioned purchase of 33 motor cycles, 19 light vehicles and 16 Tata mobiles for the Police Department.


2 pc more IT surcharge levied

NEW DELHI, Feb 1 (UNI) ó In a bid to raise Rs 1,300 crore for relief and rehabilitation work in earthquake-devastated Gujarat, the government today promulgated an ordinance to levy a 2 per cent additional income tax surcharge on those earning more than Rs 60,000 and also on the tax payable by companies for the assessment year 2001-2002.

Stating that the Taxation Laws Amendment Ordinance 2001, would be in addition to any surcharge that was part of last yearís Budget, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pramod Mahajan, while briefing newspersons after a Cabinet meeting, said the revenue earned from it would entirely be used in the reconstruction work in Gujarat.

The Cabinet also decided to amend the Income Tax act to provide 100 per cent deduction on donations made to charitable institutions for providing relief to the quake victims.

Till now 100 per cent deductions were given only on donations made to the Prime Ministerís Relief Fund or the Chief Ministerís Relief Fund.

Mr Mahajan said the benefit of Section 35A(C) of the Act would be available to all assessees, including corporates, who take up relief work.Back

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