Over a dozen of people were injured on Tuesday in a violent clash in Bihar during the “Bharat Bandh” called by various groups to protest against reservation policies, police said.Supporters, mostly upper castes youths, blocked roads and forcibly enforced the nationwide shut down in Ara town, Bhojpur district.“More than a dozen people were injured in the clash between supporters of the Bandh and a pro-reservation group comprising OBCs and Dalits,” a district police official said. Additional security have been deployed in Ara.According to reports, hundreds of youths opposing reservation to SC/ST and OBCs and supporting the Bandh, have blocked roads at several places, halted trains and forcibly closed markets in Patna, Begusarai, Lakhisarai, Muzafffarpur, Bhojpur, Sheikhpura and Darbhanga districts.The clash comes a day after the Union Home Ministry issued an advisory to all states to take precautionary measures in view of calls on social media for the “Bharat Bandh” by various anti-reservation groups to protest clashes during the April 2 SC/ST shut down.The Bharat Bandh on April 2 by Dalit groups against the alleged dilution of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act by a Supreme Court order had led to violence and arson in many parts of the country which claimed several lives and left hundreds of civilians and policemen injured.
Ben Stokes played a special knock against Gujarat Lions on Monday bringing up his maiden Indian Premier League hundred and a crucial one that guided Rising Pune Supergiant to a five-wicket victory.After a top order collapse that saw Ajinkya Rahane, Rahul Tripathi and Steve Smith fall with single digit scores and all in span of first two overs, Stokes held the Pune innings and played smart yet aggressive cricket hitting 6 sixes and 7 fours.Steve Smith praised Stokes for his innings and said that he made good use of the wicket.”It wasn’t an ideal start. We have some artillery in the shed. The partnership between MS and Stokes was magnificent; they took it deep. We know we can hit sixes here; one of the easier grounds in India to hit sixes and Stokesy made use of it.”Smith further went on to say that Stokes is a quality player and justified his record price tag of 14.5 crore.”Stokesy is a quality player and he certainly earned his cash. Fantastic player and very proud of him.”Smith also lauded the bowlers for restricting Gujarat to 162.”Great effort from the bowlers to pull it back. One of the balls hit the side of the hoarding, taking a chunk out of it, and the ball started reversing. That made things easier.”Smith hoped that they maintain the momentum and perform similarly ahead in the tournament.”The tournament is about peaking at the right time. Hopefully, it’s not too early. Five or six games in a row here. Hopefully we can keep that up.”advertisement
The American held off a strong comeback from world number one Simona Halep during a thrilling 6-1 4-6 6-4 win on Monday to reach the Australian Open quarter-finals.After being broken in the opening game of the match, Williams won six straight games to claim the set in 20 minutes.Few would have bet on French Open champion Halep fighting back from that mauling but the Romanian conjured up exceptional grit to force a deciding set.That proved to be an interesting experience for Williams, who has won 72 WTA singles titles.”I’m still learning, which is, at my age and my point in my career, I think admirable and exciting that I still have things I can learn from,” she told reporters.”I feel like each day, each match, and each tournament I’m learning something, and I think today I’m just learning that I have to fight for titles. I have to fight for matches.”The 37-year-old took a break from tennis after the birth of her daughter in 2017 and only returned last year. But she showed against Halep she has lost none of her brutal power and athleticism.”I played really good in that. I don’t know if that’s the best I have played. I honestly can’t remember the matches, but probably,” Williams said.”But that goes to show you that you have to play well for two sets. You can’t just play well for one set or six games. You have to bring it every single point, every single game, until the match is literally over.”advertisementWilliams played her first match on Dec. 31 in the Hopman Cup since her U.S. Open final defeat by Naomi Osaka in September.She said her progress to the last eight at Melbourne Park does not reflect poorly on the level of competition in women’s tennis.”I think it says more about me than women’s tennis. I think it says women’s tennis is amazing. It’s at the highest level it’s ever been,” Williams said.”Of course, I’m the biggest advocate of women’s tennis but I really do believe in my heart that everyone is playing well, and it’s tough out here.”
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen has completed the public service punishment imposed on him after last year’s Brazilian Grand Prix by attending a gathering of international race stewards in Geneva.The International Automobile Federation, Formula One’s governing body, said on Sunday that the 21-year-old Dutchman had taken part in interactive case study sessions with race officials over the weekend.”We are doing our job on the track, trying to get the best out of the race, and it’s clear that the stewards are doing their job to find the best way to reach a fair decision,” Verstappen was quoted as saying.”It’s been a good lesson for me and I’ve learned a lot, both in my day in Marrakesh, which I really enjoyed and which gave me a good understanding of the stewards, and now here.”Verstappen, the youngest ever Formula One winner, was ordered to do two days of public service for an angry confrontation with Force India’s Esteban Ocon at Interlagos in November.Verstappen was leading the Brazilian Grand Prix when he tried to pass backmarker Ocon, who attempted to retake the position but made contact and sent the Dutchman into a spin that cost him victory.The Red Bull driver angrily confronted the Frenchman afterwards and gave him a shove, an action for which he was then punished.Verstappen served the first of the two days by joining officials at an all-electric Formula E race in Morocco last month, observing how race decisions were made.The FIA said Verstappen had joined a competitors’ panel discussion in Geneva with triple World Touring Car Champion Andy Priaulx, M-Sport world Rally team Principal Richard Millener and BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt.advertisementThe Dutch driver will be back in the cockpit in Spain in just over a week’s time with pre-season testing starting in Barcelona on February 18.The Formula One season starts in Australia on March 17.Also Watch:
The National Youth Championships had some very special guests today, with the guys from Blue Care coming down to Sunshine Coast Stadium to participate in a Super Clinic with the TFA Staff and a number of representatives from the ACT, Tasmanian and Victorian NYC sides. With plenty of games, skills and drills, the guys from Blue Care had a great time, learning plenty about the game of Touch Football and loved the chance to meet some of the stars of the NYC.The group made up of adults and young adults with intellectual disabilities, were looking forward to seeing some games of Touch Football over the weekend, particularly the State of Origin series. The state pride started early with a couple of the group being from NSW, the cross border rivalry brought out the competitive instincts throughout the clinic.Clinic Participants Grant and Leigh were particularly patriotic which was great to see, both said how much the loved the games and wanted to play more and more, whilst carer Coral was extremely grateful to TFA for the holding of the clinic and the inclusive nature of the sport.Alissa, sister of former NRL Star, Chris Flannery, had plenty of previous experience with Touch Football and loved the chance to show off her skills, and to take on some of the NYC players.With the clinic drawing plenty of interest from spectators and teams preparing for games later in the day, it was particularly special to see the joy the event brought to not only the participants, carers and players but also those who were watching on.Leaving with a couple of special gifts from TFA, the guys are sure to continue to working on the skills, and are looking forward to next year’s event already.Related LinksNYC Special Guests
The mother of an Ohio State linebacker has weighed in on Austin Kendall’s trash talk.Monica Washington, the mother of Buckeyes’ starting middle linebacker Raekwon McMillan, hopes the Buckeyes “light (Austin Kendall’s) ass up!”She tweeted this earlier today at her son.McMillan himself has not tweeted about what Kendall said (he called Ohio State’s defense “basic” and said his team’s starting QB, Baker Mayfield, will light them up) but plenty of his teammates have.It’s safe to say McMillan’s mother isn’t the only one who’s fired up.Do it look like we care #HowSheGoneEat #BIA pic.twitter.com/KG3eyLIMSV— Marshon Lattimore (@shonrp2) September 15, 2016Say no more ?? https://t.co/f0konkq3On— Tracy Sprinkle (@TSprinkle93) September 15, 2016Say less ✍? https://t.co/b3b4gMnsjn— QBKILLA (@JayHolmes_) September 15, 2016Say less ..— samwise (@Sam_Hubbard_) September 15, 2016It might be impossible for Ohio State’s defense to “light (Kendall’s) ass up” considering he’s the backup quarterback, but the Buckeyes will surely be looking to light up everyone’s that is on the field for the Sooners.Ohio State and Oklahoma are set to kick off at 7:30 p.m. E.T. on FOX.[Bucknuts]
SOUTH BEND, IN – NOVEMBER 14: Head coach Brian Kelly of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on the sidelines during the third quarter at Notre Dame Stadium on November 14, 2015 in South Bend, Indiana. The Notre Dame Fighting Irish won 28-7. (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)National Signing Day is coming up on February 6, and Notre Dame is looking to add to its 2019 haul over the next few weeks.Right now, the Fighting Irish have all 21 of their current commits accounted for.10 members of the class have already enrolled and are taking classes in South Bend.That includes eight of Notre Dame’s blue chip commits, led by Top 100 recruit Zeke Correll, the No. 3 center in the country.11 more have signed National Letters of Intent, so as of now, signing day won’t be super eventful.That may change, of course. The most high-profile 2019 recruitment Notre Dame is still involved with is Asa Turner, the four-star linebacker that Brian Kelly’s staff is trying to flip from Washington. The Fighting Irish are considered the new favorite there, after Turner spent months committed to the Huskies.Right now, 247Sports’ composite rankings have Notre Dame at No. 14 overall.Only three of the classes ranked ahead of ND’s—No. 10 Penn State, No. 12 Auburn, and No. 13 Ohio State—are smaller in terms of total players.The Fighting Irish are off to a decent start in 2020 as well.The class is very early in the making, with just three players committed, but the trio is comprised of four-star players. That includes quarterback Drew Pyne, the No. 7 pro style player in 2020.As a group, the three make up the No. 15 recruiting class in the country right now. No class ranked ahead of Notre Dame’s is smaller than four players.
Press Trust of India New DelhiFebruary 7, 2019UPDATED: February 7, 2019 17:48 IST Robert Vadra arrived at ED office after kirti leftThe Enforcement Directorate (ED) was abuzz with activity on Thursday with two high-profile politically-linked persons, Robert Vadra and Karti Chidambaram, appearing before the agency for questioning in separate money-laundering investigations being conducted against them.First to arrive at the ED’s Jamnagar House office in central Delhi was Karti, son of former finance minister P Chidambaram, at about 11 am.The office houses some special investigation and vigilance units of the central probe agency. A posse of Delhi Police and Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) personnel was deployed around the premises and barricades were put up to regulate the media persons waiting outside the complex.Official sources said Karti was being grilled in the INX Media case. The ED had lodged the criminal case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) in May, 2017.The sources said the investigating officer of the case would record Karti’s statement under the PMLA, as was done in the past.The senior Chidambaram has also been questioned by the ED in the case.About 25 minutes after Karti, Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s brother-in-law Robert Vadra arrived at the same office for grilling in a money-laundering case, in which he is facing allegations of carrying out illegal transactions to purchase foreign assets.Vadra, who reached the ED office in a sports utility vehicle (SUV) along with a lawyer, appeared before the agency for questioning for the second consecutive day.On Wednesday, he was accompanied to the ED office by his wife and Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.This is the first time Vadra is appearing before any probe agency in connection with alleged dubious financial dealings.advertisementThe businessman appeared before the ED on the directions of a Delhi court after the probe agency, during the hearing of Vadra’s anticipatory bail plea, informed it that it had received information about various properties in London that belonged to the son-in-law of United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi.Officials said P Chidambaram was also expected to be questioned in a money-laundering case at the same office on Friday.ALSO READ – As Robert Vadra’s grilling continues at ED office, Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi huddle up to win heart of UPALSO WATCH – Enforcement Directorate grills Robert Vadra; No question of shaking hands with any of the parties, says Kamal HaasanFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Robert Vadra, Karti Chidambaram: Two high-profile visitors at ED office on same dayThe Enforcement Directorate was abuzz with activity on Thursday with two high-profile politically-linked persons appearing before the agency for questioning in separate money-laundering investigations being conducted against themadvertisement
Pairing the English Premier League Soccer Teams with Craft Beers from the United States Innovation Brewing. Innovation BrewingCraft beer fans have long been familiar with Asheville, North Carolina, a vibrant, artistically minded town nestled in the Appalachian Mountains of western North Carolina. Breweries like Highland Brewing, Wicked Weed, and Burial Beer are based in Asheville and frequently cited as some of the world’s best. (Burial was our pick for Best Brewery when we visited Asheville for The Manual Awards in 2017.)But just an hour’s drive outside of Asheville you can find Jackson County, an area of quaint small towns that embody that same free spirit and quirky style that made Asheville famous. Also like Asheville, Jackson County is growing its own scene of local breweries. When Nantahala Brewing Co. opens its second facility in the town of Sylva later this year, the county will boast one brewery for about every 10,000 residents — an impressive density for a scene that’s only just getting started.The next time life takes you to North Carolina, check out these independent breweries in Jackson County.Innovation Brewing. Innovation BrewingBalsam Falls Brewing Co. is a husband-and-wife operation that opened in 2017. Located in downtown Sylva, it features up to 20 taps of its beer in the tasting room. The rotating offerings include favorites like Into the Mist Southern IPA and small-batch beers that feature locally harvested herbs, fruits, and vegetables. Balsam Falls isn’t afraid to branch out, with saisons, sour beers and a brut IPA making appearances on its tap list.Innovation Brewing also has its home base in Sylva. Its 7-barrel brewhouse provides the capacity for up to 30 beers on tap at the site. Year-round releases include Hoppy Camper IPA and Phat Chance Amber. Innovation’s owners also run Pie Times Pizza Co., conveniently located next door.Whiteside Brewing. Nick BreedloveIn June, Innovation Brewing opened its Innovation Station outpost in the town of Dillsboro. The taproom there boasts 32 taps and a creekside porch to accompany Innovation’s beer-aging facility and pilot brewing system. Both the main brewery and Innovation Station are dog-friendly.Located about 30 miles away, Cashiers is home to Whiteside Brewing Co. Whiteside opened in June of this year and is on the same property as Laurelwood Inn, creating a unique “bed and beverage” destination. Whiteside crafts a wide range of beers including coffee stouts, pale ales, and altbiers in addition to the ever-popular IPA. It also has a diverse food menu and features an outdoor deck and lawn to take in the mountain scenery. The brewery’s motto is the aspirational “mountain life in a glass.”You can learn more about Jackson’s County beer destinations at Jackson County’s tourism website. The McMenamins Effect: How 2 Brothers Helped Start Beervana Getting to Know the Lithuanian Beer Scene The Best Fresh Hop Beers to Celebrate the Hop Harvest Editors’ Recommendations Why Tea and Beer Go Well Together (and 5 Tea Beers to Try)
New Delhi: Global investment firm Blackstone has bought a majority stake in Aadhar Housing Finance that caters to the housing financing needs of low-income households, a statement said on Tuesday. Blackstone has bought 97.7 per cent stake in Aadhar for about Rs 2,200 crore, sources said.Blackstone announced that private equity funds managed by Blackstone have acquired a 97.7 per cent stake in Aadhar Housing Finance Ltd, including the entire stake held by existing controlling shareholders, Wadhawan Global Capital Limited (WGC) and Dewan Housing Finance Limited. Also Read – SC declines Oil Min request to stay sharing of documentsAs part of the transaction, Blackstone has also infused Rs 800 crore primary equity capital into Aadhar to fund the company for future growth. Aadhar, which has business interests across 20 states and union territories, has asset under management (AUM) of Rs 10,000 crore (USD 1.4 billion), and has average loan ticket size of less than Rs 10 lakh (less than USD 14,000). Kapil Wadhawan, Chairman of WGC and CMD of DHFL said Aadhar has emerged as one of the largest and most trusted entities in the affordable housing segment and hoped the company will continue to give better services.
NEW DELHI: In a unique order, that has raised quite some eyebrows additional DCP (Central district) Anant Mittal has issued a directive stating that all police personnel should wear formal clothes even when in plainclothes while on duty, the logic supposed to be behind this is to maintain dress code decorum under his jurisdiction.The order, issued on July 18, has been circulated in all police stations and different branches of Central district. “It has been noticed that police official, including women staff, even while in plain clothes used to wear jeans, T-shirts, especially women staff tops, sleeveless and western-style dress that does not look proper in office premises or police station and against the dress code (sic),” the order states. Also Read – Gurdwara Bangla Sahib bans single use plastic”Henceforth, all officials, including women staff, are hereby directed to wear the formal dress even when in plain clothes. The wearing of T-shirts, sports shoes, tops, low-waist trousers will not be tolerated.” “The male staff can wear trousers and shirts as usual, while the female staff can wear sarees, salwar suit/kurta, trousers/shirts, etc. The supervisory officers will ensure a proper check of the directions. Non-compliance will be viewed seriously,” it states.
New Delhi: After Chandrayaan-2, the ISRO has planned launch of its solar mission, Aditya-L1, in the first half of 2020 to study the Sun’s corona, according to the space agency. Aditya-L1 is meant to observe the corona, which are the outer layers of the Sun, extending to thousands of kilometres. “How the corona gets heated to such high temperatures is still an unanswered question in solar physics,” the ISRO stated on its website while sharing information about the mission. India on Monday successfully launched its second lunar mission Chandrayaan-2 onboard its powerful rocket GSLV-MkIII-M1 from the spaceport here to explore the unchartered south pole of the celestial body by landing a rover. In a news conference last month, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) K Sivan had said, “It is 1.5 million kilometres from the Earth. It will always look at the Sun and give analysis of the corona because it has a major impact on climate change.” He said the mission is planned for launch in the first half of 2020. Another interplanetary mission to Venus will be launched in the next 2-3 years, Sivan, who is also the secretary, Department of Space, had said. Aditya-L1, with additional experiments, can provide observations of the Sun’s photosphere, chromosphere and corona. In addition, particle payloads will study the particle flux emanating from the Sun, it added.
Laayoune – Public authorities dispersed,Tuesday in Laayoune, an unauthorized gathering of forty women led by a group of topless Spanish women. These behaviors have sparked the disapproval and indignation of the population, as being shocking and a breach of the traditions and values of Moroccan society, said a statement from the province of Laayoune.
Former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno died from lung cancer Sunday. Paterno, 85, who won more college football games than anyone in the history of the sport, passed away in a Pennsylvania hospital just months after a child sex abuse scandal damaged his reputation and led to his removal as PSU’s head football coach. Paterno was a member of the Nittany Lion’s staff for 61 years. “I am deeply saddened to learn about the passing of Coach Joe Paterno,” OSU football coach Urban Meyer said in a statement. “He was a man who I have deep respect for as a human being, as a husband and father, as a leader and as a football coach. I was very fortunate to have been able to develop a personal relationship with him, especially over the course of the last several years, and it is something that I will always cherish.” Editor’s note: Check back with The Lantern for more reaction from Meyer in an exclusive interview.
LKAB says it “is the first industrial company to launch an interactive safety training and certification program. Participants are trained in familiar settings and realistic situations. “At LKAB safety always comes first. We’re very pleased to be able to offer our co-workers an innovative training program that employs gaming technology,” says Jonny Snell, QEW coordinator at LKAB.The stage for the training program is a virtual version of LKAB’s underground mines and processing plants. Participants embark on a journey that takes them from the change rooms through physical plant and workshop areas. During the program participants are faced with a number of different work-environment and safety-related scenarios.“The program is based on situation-based learning in work environment and safety, in a virtual environment. Participants must solve various tasks correctly and safely. They are aided by an audio guide,” says Snell.Before training participants get a chance to try the different scenarios, which deal with, among other things, maintenance and overhead crane work, they must first equip themselves with the right type of equipment in the change room.“That’s where many people begin their working day at LKAB – in the change room. This is a logical way to start the program; by equipping your character, or avatar, as it is called in gaming language, for work at surface level or underground,” explains Snell.The proposal for a virtual gaming environment, of which the aim is to support and strengthen work-environment and safety efforts, was presented to LKAB’s internal innovation council. What began as an idea presented by a committed, innovative and responsible employee is now a finished product – ready to be launched.“We contacted the game developer to begin collaboration. It has been a long process and has involved both mining experts and chief safety officers to create as realistic an environment as possible,” says Snell.EducateSmart has developed the interactive training program, which is called SafetyBASE.“Existing training programs are perceived as containing too much unnecessary text. It is simply too much to read in preparation for practically oriented tasks,” says Matti Larsson, Developer at EducateSmart.The program is based around a so-called serious game, i.e., it is a training program in game form that takes place in familiar environments and realistic situations. Gaming technology is the core of the program. According to international research, this is the best training form for effective learning through increased motivation.“Work environment and safety issues are more important than anything else at LKAB. If we can highlight issues effectively, in a way that increases awareness of risks and contributes to making LKAB safer, we must do so,” says Snell.Initially the training program will be implemented in a full-scale test, where 60 LKAB- employees will get an opportunity to try the program.“After the trials an evaluation will be conducted and statistics from the test will also be presented. Then, we will be able to see what we do well and, above all, what we need to be better at,” concludes Snell.LKAB is an international high-tech minerals group that mines and upgrades the unique iron ore of northern Sweden for the global steel market.
Pinterest Twitter Live Podcast: Reviewing and discussing WWE Clash of Champions from Charlotte Wrestleview Live #65: Reviewing and discussing WWE Clash of Champions from Charlotte Facebook WWE Clash of Champions Results – 9/15/19 (Rollins vs. Strowman, Kingston vs. Orton) WhatsApp Google+ Adam Martin RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Former NXT Champion Aleister Black is currently out of action after suffering an undisclosed injury at an NXT live event in Las Vegas last weekend.According to a report by F4WOnline, Black suffered the injury while wrestling new NXT Champion Tommaso Ciampa. He was reportedly crotched at some point during the match. No details are known at this time, but it’s possible he will miss TakeOver in Brooklyn.New rule for NXT UK talent bookingsF4WOnline is also reporting that any wrestlers part of the new UK division are no longer being allowed to take any bookings over a seven day period prior to any WWE event.Southside Wrestling seemed to confirm this new rule when they announced Joseph Conners and Dan Moloney were off the upcoming August 19 event.
Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., has begun construction of a facility that will be a part of the proposed space force, the Associated Press reported.The $128 Space Control Laboratory, a part of the Air Force Research Laboratory, will consolidate space combat research and technology development that is now performed at six different facilities at the base.“Space is now a war-fighting domain,” said Col. Eric Felt, director of the Space Vehicles Directorate at Kirtland. “If our adversaries attempt to counter us in that domain, we need to have the capabilities and the tools for our nation to counter that.”The Space Vehicles Directorate conducts space technology research and develops technologies for space use. Several installations are now conducting research into space defense and space-based intelligence and surveillance.The new facility will include office and lab space for 65 military and civilian contractors with completion expected in December 2020.Air Force photo by Senior Airman Eli Chevalier ADC AUTHOR
Alaska Congressman Don Young has co-sponsored a bill to end the federal ban on medical marijuana in states that have chosen to make it legal.Download AudioThe bill would also allow VA doctors to recommend marijuana use to their patients and require the government to start issuing marijuana research licenses.Young said in a written statement that he considers both medical and recreational marijuana a matter of states’ rights.The bill is known as the CARERS Act, an acronym of “Compassionate Access, Research Expansion and Respect States.” Its prime House sponsor is Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn. It is the twin of a Senate bill sponsored by Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J. The legislation could give marijuana entrepreneurs an alternative to operating in an all-cash environment. In states that allow marijuana commerce, the bill would allow those businesses to use banks, without subjecting the banks to charges of money laundering.
Call 550-8422 (Anchorage) or 1-800-478-8255 (statewide) during the live broadcastPost your comment before, during or after the live broadcast (comments may be read on air).Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org (comments may be read on air)LIVE Broadcast: Tuesday, October 30, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. on APRN stations statewide.SUBSCRIBE: Get Talk of Alaska updates automatically by email, RSS or podcast. Alaska has been in recession for more than three years. Our unemployment rate is currently the highest in the nation. Will the recession continue into next year or are there signs that job loss is slowing and stability may return? Are recovery and growth are on the horizon?Listen nowHOST: Lori TownsendGUESTS:Mouchine Guetabbi – Economist with ISERNeil Fried – state economist
Union Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs Arun Jaitley chairs the 22nd GST Council meeting in New Delhi on October 6, 2017. Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla is also seen.Press Information BureauAfter facing strong criticism, is the Central government at last planning to bring to real estate under the Goods and Services Tax (GST)? We don’t have a definite answer to that, but there has been some indication from the union finance minister.Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is currently on a week-long tour to the US. While speaking at Harvard University on Thursday, he indicated that the real estate sector might be brought under the ambit of the new tax regime, Business Standard reported.GST Council, in its next meeting in Guwahati in November, would consider bringing the sector under the new indirect tax regime, Jaitley said.Economists and market analysts opined that real estate has seen the highest tax evasion among all the business sectors and need to be regulated in a structured manner.”The one sector in India where maximum amount of tax evasion and cash generation takes place and which is still outside the GST is real estate. Some of the states have been pressing for it. I believe that there is a strong case to bring real estate into the GST,” BS quoted Jaitley as saying.However, without the rate, it is difficult to understand how much the consumer will be benefited if the sector comes under GST taxation. Moreover, it is not just the rate, rules applicable under the service tax regime and the input tax credit facility for developers will determine if the move is beneficiary.Nevertheless, with the real estate sector under the ambit of GST, consumers would pay one final tax on the whole product. And builders are expected to pass on the benefits to home buyers, which is expected to bring down the cost of the property.”The builders are expected to pass on the benefits of lower tax burden under the GST regime to the buyers of property by way of reduced prices/installments … It is advised to all builders/construction companies that in the flats under construction, they should not ask customers to pay a higher tax rate on installments to be received after imposition of GST,” PropTiger reported quoting a government statement.Jaitley while speaking on India’s tax reforms, said, the taxation system in India one of the least efficient in the world with a very small tax base.The new tax system was rolled out at midnight on July 1, which replaces a number of indirect taxes to bring in one comprehensive tax structure. At the present form, GST has five rates for different goods and services, although petroleum, real estate, and alcohol were kept out of its ambit.The finance minister is scheduled to attend the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.He also spoke on Aadhaar card. Taking cues from the recent Supreme Court judgment, he hinted that the government may make Aadhaar mandatory for buying a car and for booking international air tickets in the future.While speaking at the university, Jaitley described the note ban exercise in November last as a fundamental reform necessary to make India a more tax-compliant society.He added that the government is making systematic efforts to challenge the “shadow economy.”