A Norwegian Diplomat vehicle held for Artifacts Smuggling in Israel

IAA confirmed the amount of antiquities as 10 kilograms, releasing a picture that “showed a mound of small coins and around a dozen small figurines.”

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Antiquities found in a Norwegian diplomatic vehicle at the Allenby border crossing, May 31, 2016. (Israel Tax Authority). Image source: Timesof Israel.com
  • Antiquities smuggling is a recurrent problem in Israel
  • Most of the coins recovered were from the Hellenistic and Roman eras
  • The valuables were seized while a senior Norwegian diplomat was in the car

A Norwegian diplomat vehicle carrying a haul of antiquities consisting of coins, sculptures, statuettes, and other artifacts concealed in cardboard boxes was arrested at Allenby Bridge on Monday, June 6.

The valuables were seized while a senior Norwegian diplomat was in the car, travelling between Jerusalem and Jordan. “Following Norway’s permission to the Israeli MFA for the custom authorities to search the vehicle, custom officials stated to have found artifacts in the car. A locally employed driver was detained by Israeli authorities,” reported Jerusalem Post.

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The officials along with the driver were arrested at the scene but were later granted conditional release by the Jerusalem Magistrate Court after posting bail. The Israeli Tax Authority named the driver as Issa Nagam, a resident of Beit Hanina in east Jerusalem.

Israeli Tax Authority officials handed the artifacts over to the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) for furthering details on the items. Initially, it was reported that the articles found were of “great value”, with no further information on the origin of the precious figurines.

The Allenby Bridge border crossing seen from the Jordanian side. Image source: Wikimedia Commons
The Allenby Bridge border crossing seen from the Jordanian side. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Antiquities smuggling is in fact a recurrent problem in Israel, where precious items are sold illegally to collectors both inside and outside the region. They are often used to launder money in villages near West Bank and Bar Kochba-era tunnels.

IAA later confirmed the amount of antiquities as 10 kilograms, releasing a picture that “showed a mound of small coins and around a dozen small figurines.”

“Most of the coins were from the Hellenistic and Roman eras. The bulk was minted by Judea’s Hasmonean Kings and by King Herod,” said an IAA spokesperson.

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The Norwegian Embassy in Tel Aviv told the Times of Israel, “Norway takes this incident very seriously.” An internal probe has been launched by the Foreign Embassy to investigate how a diplomat vehicle was used for an illegal activity.

“We are aware that diplomatic vehicles from other missions have been subject to similar incidents. In addition to the handling by Israeli authorities, we have initiated an internal process,” said the Norwegian Embassy.

-by Maariyah Siddiquee, an intern at NewsGram. Twitter: @MaariyahSid

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Term Insurance – The Antidote to the Fear of Family Financial Health

Complete all your family responsiblities

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family insurance
There is a fine line of balance to be maintained between mental health and financial health. Pixabay

With power comes responsibility. If you are the center of your family, you must take care of them. You know that it is essential that you are present for them at their best, as well as their worst. It is all about making them feel that there is someone whom they can rely upon at their lowest.

There is a fine line of balance to be maintained between mental health and financial health. Though you are always available to pick your loved ones when they fall, it is as imperative that you are prepared for any such circumstances that could jeopardize their happiness. While you are taking care of family and making all their needs yours first, thus it is crucial l that you secure their future financially with term life insurance.

To make sure that you have the best term life insurance protection for your loved ones, look for policies that offer the following features and benefits:

A Protective Umbrella

Presently, you are in your prime years and are trying to meet all your and your family’s needs. They depend on you to make the right decision for them. It is your responsibility to help them achieve their goals and dreams. They trust you blindly, especially in the matters of financial stability. You are there to support them in all their endeavours, which to them, is their biggest strength.

Though life is very unpredictable, anything can happen, and nothing is certain. Have you given a thought to what will happen to them if some unforeseen situation occurs in the future? How well your family who is entirely dependent on you to manage the financials?

Precaution is always better than cure. Having the best insurance plans to secure your family is perhaps the best solution to all your worries. The best term life insurance will protect your family. It will provide them with a lump-sum amount for solving their urgent financial requirements.

Investing in insurance plans will help in maintaining the lifestyle that you provided them by providing a regular income for the household expenses with aparticular choice of a specific plan. This will provide them with the security that you provide them with, even in your absence.

severed-arms
Every family muist be prepared for unpredictable situations like Accidents. (Representational Image). Pixabay

Protection against Emergencies

There is a set and daily routine for everyone. You also have a routine that you and your family are comfortable with. There is an ease with which you can fulfill your family’s desires. It is possible only because you have a set and secured budget that equips you in providing for all their requirements.

Though there can come a time when unpredictable situations can take place, it is better than you are prepared for them beforehand. What if you get affected by a lifetime illness, or an accident takes place? It might make a difference in your earning capacity.It will create a gap that might end up affecting your family.

A term insurance policy will ensure that such a situation is prevented. The best term insurance policy will offer you the option of adding a disability benefit. This will ensure that your family would not require to make life-changing decisions.

Flexibility to Modify Coverage

With being the decision-maker for the family, you must always be there to protect your family. They look up to you as their security blanket. You single-handedly solve all their problems, making you the most critical person in their lives. Therefore, protecting yourself should be considered as protecting their interests.

Many challenges come across in life, which might create problems for you and your family’s future. You should be cautious about such circumstances. There is term life insurance that helps you prevent such situations.

The best term life insurance can help you with benefits such as high maturity age. This offers a life-cover for the highest age bracket. With this, you are prepared for the most uncomprehensive conditions.

income-tax
Term life insurance plans helpsave tax up to Rs 1.5 lakhs. Pixabay

Tax-Saving Benefits

With a growing family, the requirements also increase. There is an increase in living costs and a rise in expenses. It would be a benefitting factor if some money could be saved. One such way would be investing in term life insurance plans as they provide tax benefits. Term life insurance plans helpsave tax up to Rs 1.5 lakhs as provided under Section 80C. These minor benefits count for significant differences in life.

Read More: Keto Diet Can Increase Bad Cholesterol

There can be a dilemma to determine the best term life insurance plan due to a variety of options. It would be beneficial if you go through all the plans and choose the one which is right suited for you and your family.

Term life insurance plans offered by reputable insurers such as Max Life Insurance enable you to strengthen your coverage with the help of features such as protection against accidental dismemberment and critical illnesses. Remember, the more you are prepared for the future,the more are the chances of a happy life for you and your family.

[Disclaimer: The article published above promotes links of commercial interests.]

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Increased GST on Smartphone to Affect Industry and Consumers: Experts

GST hike to make mobile phones costly, hit sales

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GST mobiles
Increasing the GST on mobile phones from 12 per cent to 18 per cent, industry experts feel it would hit the industry and the consumers hard. Pixabay

With the GST Council, headed by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, increasing the GST on mobile phones from 12 per cent to 18 per cent on Saturday, industry experts feel it would hit the industry and the consumers hard.

Brands are in no position to absorb this impact. “They will, most certainly, decide to pass it on to the consumer, at least in case of high-selling models,” said Navkendar Singh, Research Director, IDC India.

The India Cellular and Electronics Association (ICEA) stressed that the move would stymie consumption.

“The 6 per cent GST increase will be detrimental to the vision of ‘digital India’. Consumption will be stymied and our domestic consumption target of $80 billion (Rs 6 lakh crore) by 2025 will not be achieved. We will fall short by at least Rs 2 lakh crore,” said Pankaj Mohindroo, ICEA Chairman.

GST mobiles
It also said the GST hike on mobile phone might adversely affect localisation of manufacturing as well as popularisation of the country’s digital payments objectives. Pixabay

In a letter to the Finance Minister on March 12, the ICEA had said the mobile handsets sector was in deep stress because of the supply chain disruption due to coronavirus outbreak. It was the most inappropriate time to consider GST hike on mobile phones, the industry body said. It also said the GST hike on mobile phone might adversely affect localisation of manufacturing as well as popularisation of the country’s digital payments objectives.

According to ICEA, 31-32 crore Indians who buy phones in the country will be impacted by the move.

Terming the move counter-intuitive and detrimental to the ‘digital India’ vision, the IDC India Research Director said, “This is a textbook case of missing the wood for the trees. This will stunt any hope of growth in the near-term, which anyway looks challenging now due to coronavirus issue at both supply and demand ends,” Singh told IANS.

Also Read- Facebook Donates $20 Million to Fight Coronavirus Pandemic

The coronavirus outbreak, which has hampered global tech giants’ 2020 plans leading to cancellation or postponement of global flagship conferences, is set to hit supplies of smartphone components from China to India at least till the second quarter of this year.

According to Tarun Pathak, Associate Director, Counterpoint Research, India smartphone market will see at least 15 per cent shortfall in shipments in the first quarter (January-March period). (IANS)

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Know About the Financial Impact of Abolishing DDT

Why was DDT abolished? How does it affect finance and business? Find out here?

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DDT budget
Earlier effective Dividend Distribution Tax (DDT)was 16.995 per cent on the dividend declared. Lifetime Stock

BY ASHOK SHAH

Earlier effective Dividend Distribution Tax (DDT)was 16.995 per cent on the dividend declared. The tax was then grossed up in Budget 2014 and the current effective DDT rate was 20.56 per cent on the dividend declared. Further resident (non-corporate) shareholders were liable for an additional tax at 10 per cent (plus applicable surcharge and cess) on dividend exceeding Rs 10 lakh. The effective tax rate for Individuals falling in highest tax slabs was 14.248 per cent.

In the Budget 2020, DDT in the hands of the company has been abolished and has been simultaneously substituted with a tax in the hands of the shareholders at applicable tax rate. Additional tax of 10 per cent also has been done away with. The companies declaring such dividend will have to now deduct tax at source (TDS) at 10 per cent on the amount distributed as dividend.

DDT budget
In the Budget 2020, DDT in the hands of the company has been abolished and has been simultaneously substituted with a tax in the hands of the shareholders at applicable tax rate. Wikimedia Commons

Small tax payers would definitely benefit as their effective rate of tax is much lower and would result in substantial saving. Impact on taxation of large retail investors may be negative, as dividend is expected to be taxable at the maximum slab rate in their hands. The effective tax rate for individuals falling in highest tax slabs is 42.74 per cent i.e. there will be an additional burden of 28.492 per cent.

Also Read- Fiscal Budget To Upscale FDI Inflow, Job Creation in Mobile Industry: Experts

However, this will promote foreign investment since the foreign investors would now claim benefit under the double tax treaty where the tax rates ranges from 5 to 15 per cent and the same will be available as credit in their home countries. This will result in direct saving of 20.56 per cent for these entities. (IANS)