Dreamliner taxies out today
Tatas proposed car may hit PIL pothole
Left not convinced with SEZ, mining policies
Dreamliner taxies out today
Seattle, July 7
Boeing is promoting the jet as a super-efficient airplane with new passenger-pleasing features and several airlines around the world including Air-India and Jet have placed orders and firm commitments for an aircraft.
Air-India has placed an order for 27 Boeing Dreamliners and Jet Airways will buy 10 of them.
Air-India chairman and managing director Vasudevan Thulsidas, who is here to take part in the rollout of the Dreamliner, told reporters the company will buy 68 passenger jets from Boeing, of which 27 will be the Dreamliners.
“Boeing plans to invest $185 million in a joint venture with Air-India as part of a deal for the sale of 68 aircraft, including 27 of its latest offering - the Boeing 787 Dreamliner,” he said.
The proposed joint venture between the world’s leading aerospace company and India’s national flag carrier will offer maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facilities for Boeing 777 and 787 aircraft to third parties.
The Boeing investment in the MRO joint venture will comprise $100 million for setting up the unit, $75 million for training and $10 million for general purposes.
The proposed MRO, which will be one of the five strategic business units (SBUs) of the restructured company following the merger of Air-India and Indian Airlines, will cover both airframes and engines with Boeing offering its expertise for airframes. Air-India is looking for a partner for the engines, according to Thulasidas.
Air-India also plans to start six direct flights to the US starting with non-stop flights between New Delhi-New York, Mumbai-Chicago and Mumbai-San Francisco. Subsequently, eight Indian cities, including Kochi, Kolkata, Amritsar and Ahmedabad, will be linked to several US cities via a hub in New York.
Commenting on the robust aviation sector in India, he said: "We are really bullish about growth and we think we have got the right combination of circumstances today in terms of a growing market, a growing fleet, the merger of Indian Airlines with the company and a realisation among the employees".
"This kind of right combination should make us one among the five best airlines in Asia," he said.
Air-India has drawn up plans to start flights to various American cities such as Boston, Dallas Fort Worth, Houston and Washington, New York, Chicago and San Fransisco. The airline expects American operations would contribute the maximum revenue, instead of the Gulf region that currently makes up 35 to 40 per cent of its income.
Boeing claims its latest offering would use 20 per cent less fuel than any other plane of its size. It would carry 210-250 passengers on routes of up to 8,500 nautical miles.
The mid-sized wide-body passenger airliner is scheduled to enter service in 2008 and is being rolled out from Boeing's Everett facility. Boeing has so far received 642 orders from 46 customers. The first delivery of the Dreamliner will be to All Nippon Airways in May 2008. The first flight test of the new plane is scheduled for sometime between August and September this year. — PTI, IANS
Tatas proposed car may hit PIL pothole
Mumbai, July 7
With the city already choc-a-block with new cars in the wake of booming economy, civic officials say excess capacity caused by road expansion plans have already been exhausted.
The situation is expected to worsen when the Tatas launch Rs 1 lakh car next year. T. Chandrashekar, Commissioner, Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), created a flutter when he threatened to file a public interest litigation petition to prevent the introduction of the Rs 1 lakh car in the market.
Chandrashekhar says people who own two-wheelers would be tempted to buy the car instead thereby adding to the pressure on the city's infrastructure. He further called for the rationing of road space so that plying of private vehicles could be curtailed.
Chandrashekar has been responsible for sprucing up Mumbai's roads, which included the project to widen the city's Eastern and Western Express Highways and the creation of link roads to connect the eastern and western parts of the city which is divided by the suburban railway network.
MMRDA has already mooted a proposal whereby those buying a car would first have to show proof of parking space before being given a licence to purchase vehicles.
Left not convinced with SEZ, mining policies
New Delhi, July 7
“In view of the widespread objections and apprehensions about the existing Act and rules, it is incumbent upon the government to ensure a full discussion on the report of the Standing Committee in the forthcoming session.”
The discussions in Parliament can be the basis for bringing about the necessary changes in the Act and rules, the CPM politburo said in a statement.
On the proposed mining policy cleared by the Group of Minister (GoM), it said the politburo disapproves of the proposed mining policy approved by the GoM.
by K.R. Wadhwaney
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's keen interest in the much-neglected civil aviation sector has paved the way for another international airport at Greater Noida (UP).
The new airport will bring cheers to airlines and tourists.
The proposed site is Zewar, which is 120 km from Agra and 70 from Delhi. It will be called Taj international aviation hub. The roads from Agra and Delhi will be so planned that the passengers can reach the airport within two hours by cars and buses. Once the work on the airport commences, more than half-a-dozen hotels of different categories will be raised. The golf course in the vicinity will be an additional attraction for the tourists.
The airport will become world class if the Centre treats it as intensely as the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA). The international airport is more a Centre's `baby' than the state's, regardless of location.
The site chosen has additional land available. Initially, it will be constructed on 1,500 hectares. The airport will have sufficient parking space even for super jumbos and terminal buildings will be ultra-modern.
The GMR group, which is involved in the upgradation of the IGIA, has decided to bid for it. It will get preference over other bidders subject to condition that its bid is not below 90 per cent of the highest bidder.
Since private bidder's equity plan is 74 per cent, quite a few renowned international companies are expected to push GMR out.
Aviation analysts have expressed reservations about GMR's functioning in upgrading the IGIA. It is said that its subsidiary, Delhi International Airport Limited, has not been able to remove bottlenecks and congestion at the airport. According to frequent flyers, the scenario has deteriorated instead of improving.
The remaining equity of 26 per cent will be equally shared between the UP government and the Airports Authority of India. Analysts feel that UP, which projected this plan more than five years ago, should have had larger share than that of the AAI, which lacks in work culture.
For the last two months, UP bureaucrats are working overtime on the project. Their techno-feasibility and project report are rated excellent and the civil aviation ministry had no hesitation in placing it before the expert panel. The ministry is said to have assured the UP government that it will secure the Centre's approval inside of three months.
Air India will initiate Mumbai-New York-Mumbai non-stop flight from August 1, 2007, as the first Boeing B-7770-200 LR lands some time this month. In three configuration, the aircraft, with comfortable seating, will have eight first class, 35 executive class and 195 economy class (three sections) chairs.
The Minister of State for Aviation Praful Patel had stated in the recent MPs Consultative Committee that all AI operations would stabilise by 2008.
by A.N. Shanbhag
Q: I am a salaried employee, having a PAN, currently not liable for tax since I have invested in tax-saving funds. My wife has a mobile company franchisee but the PAN number given for TDS deduction is mine. The commissions paid by the company are after TDS deductions. My query is: Is this additional income going to affect me when I fill up Saral form? How do I show expenses? Is there any method of getting return of TDS?
— M.K. Ayer
A: The basic problem is that your wife is earning the income by using your PAN. Yes, there will be problems. Change this practice as early as possible. There are many assessees who treat themselves and their spouses as one entity. Good in practice but bad for taxes. For tax, the husband and wife are two separate entities.
Given the current situation, you will not be in a position to claim TDS, either as a refund or set it off against her tax liability. On the flip side, it is better that she pays full tax on her income, despite the TDS and in future submits her own PAN.
Q: I have deposited Rs 20,000 in a tax plan (dividend reinvestment option) on February 28, 2006. The scheme has declared dividend and the same have been directly reinvested in units. Can I get tax benefit u/s 80CC for reinvestment in units under same tax plan?
A: Any contribution to ELSS is eligible for the benefit of deduction u/s 80C (and not 80CC). Dividend reinvested partakes the character of fresh contributions and hence each such dividend is eligible u/s 80C. Moreover, each such dividend has a lock-in of three years from the dates of reinvestments.
Fixed maturity plan
Q: My question is regarding fixed maturity plans (FMPs) of mutual funds. I want to know is there any kind of FMPs, which gives Sec 80C benefit? For example, we have FDs for a lock-in period of five years and get Section 80C benefit. Are there any such FMPs. If yes then I would like to know about it. One more query is that I am looking to invest in ELSS Fund for tax saving purposes. I want to know the tax treatment on the gains or profits made out of it.
A: FMPs do not offer 80C benefit. The same is offered only by ELSS funds. About taxation of ELSS funds, there is a three-year lock-in. So whenever you sell, the gain will necessarily be long-term in nature. As the tax policy stands now, long-term gains and dividends paid, if any, are tax-free.
NRI and Saral
Q: I am based in the US but have some Indian income in terms of rent on property, interest etc. So far, I used to file a tax return in the Saral form. However, someone informed me that the form has changed and I was indeed taken aback on seeing the new form. There are some eight of them and they run into pages and pages requiring all sorts of information. Do NRIs like me also have to file these forms as tax returns? And are these newly released forms applicable for the current tax filing or from next year?
A: Yes, it is true that the government has come out with new tax filing forms that replace the old Saral. Different forms are applicable to different categories of taxpayers and though there are eight different forms, only one will be applicable to you as per your category. Yes, NRIs also have to use the new forms and these are applicable for the current tax filing. At first, these new forms do seem like requiring a lot of information as compared to the old one, but if you examine the same carefully, a lot of it are schedules and tables that require the same information that you otherwise would have provided or should have provided, only this is in an organised and systematic manner. Yet, if you so desire, for the first year, you can employ a chartered accountant to do the needful for you, perhaps after the first year, once you get familiarised with the new way of providing information, you can do it yourself. Moreover, it is hoped that by next year, electronic filing would become more of a norm than it is today.
Investment by PIO
Q: I live in India. Recently, my son and his wife, who are in the USA, have been blessed with a baby daughter. I want to put aside some money for her primarily in shares and mutual funds such that she gets a somewhat substantial sum when she grows up. What is the legal way of doing it?
A: Your granddaughter though born in the US will be a person of Indian origin (PIO). There is no ban on PIOs investing in the Indian capital market. You can buy mutual funds on her behalf with either you or her parents as guardians. Stay away from funds or insurance policies offering products specifically designed for children. Invest in a well-managed equity fund that has demonstrated performance. Over time, this would prove to be a good investment. And even if the laws stay as they are currently, 100 per cent of the funds can be remitted abroad when she may require the same.
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