Friday, March 30, 2001, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Politics behind communal riots: accused

Mumbai, March 29
In a surprise move, an accused in the serial blast case has alleged before a TADA court that the communal riots of 1992-93 were “politically motivated” and the explosions that followed were a fallout of these disastrous events.

Intiaz Gawte, deposing before Designated Judge P.D. Kode, volunteered to say yesterday that only political parties had benefited from the communal riots and the subsequent serial explosions which rocked parts of Mumbai eight years ago.

The main accused in the serial blasts were absconding while small timers had been caught and were facing trial in this court, the accused told the judge who was recording his statement under Section 313 of Cr.PC at the end of the trial.

Gawte is the 13th accused to step into the box. The CBI has alleged that Gawte had parked a scooter laden with RDX at Dhanaji Street here. However, the scooter did not explode.

The court is engaged in the marathon exercise of recording the statements of all the 120 accused, including film actor Sanjay Dutt. PTI



IT service booths to be set up
Tribune News Service

Patiala, March 29
The Income Tax Department is in the process of establishing service booths all over the country to facilitate the filing of returns besides developing a system whereby people can file their returns through e-mail.

The department is also aiming at restructuring the department by reducing the staff by around 5 per cent. It will take the help of computers to tackle the increase in workload.

Disclosing this here today after inaugurating a facilitation-cum-receipt counter at Aayakar Bhavan here, north western region Chief Commissioner, Income Tax, J.S. Ahluwalia, said both steps were designed to develop the department into a service organisation and provide more facilities to the public.

He said once the e-mail service was started, assessees could file their returns from anywhere in the world. He said similarly the department wanted to open service booths all over the country for the collection of returns so that people were not inconvenienced by being made to wait while filing their returns in the department office.

Mr Ahluwalia said the department was thinking of developing an Internet service to ensure efficient inter-office connectivity. Once this was achieved, the department would be put on the Internet. He said a computerisation drive was also being started as the department had been given a target of increasing the number of assessees from 2.5 crore at present to five crore by 2003. He also disclosed that there were 21 lakh assessees in the north west region and that a 30 per cent increase in the assessees was envisaged this year.

Earlier, Mr Ahluwalia inaugurated the special counter in the department office here. Speaking on the occasion, Commissioner, Income Tax, Patiala B.M. Singh said the counter had been opened with the aim objective of giving better facilities to the assessees, to improve productivity of the employees and to shorten the delivery period of various services given by the department. Mr B.M. Singh said the counter would be linked with a number of computers which would be directly linked with the Regional Computer Centre. He said the centre would house a permanent PAN Enquiry Counter where assessees would be able to get information about their PAN from the receipt counter itself.

He said as a special courtesy to senior citizens, a special counter had been set up so that they did not have to wait for long to get information. He said now it would also be possible to process the returns at the receipt counter itself which would again save time.Back

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