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Kerala bar bribery case: KM Mani vacates official residence


New Delhi: Kerala Congress(M) Chief KM Mani, who was allegedly an accomplice in the bar bribery case, which led to his forced resignation as the Finance Minister, vacated his official residence today.

Prior to his vacating his official residence, he asserted that he would be back once the allegations on him were proven wrong. The Congress leader vacated his authorised house- ‘Prashanti’ this morning.

Mani also expressed satisfaction on the work he has done in the past 50 years of his social and political life. He has full faith in god and believes he would bring justice to him.

“When I look back to see what I could have done for the poor during the 50 years of my public life, I am satisfied. God is with me. There is no need to fear when God is with you. The almighty has said ‘I am leaving you for some time. You will be weak for a while. I will make you stronger’,” said Mani in an interview with a news channel.

KM Mani was one of the most the extensive working associate of Kerala assembly and also the senior-most minister in the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF).

The former Finance Minister was accused in the Kerala bar bribery case and an FIR was filed against him, which compelled him to resign on November 10 once the pressure mounted on him. The ruling Congress-led United Democratic Front asked him to quit, once the High Court supported an advance enquiry into the case and made harsh comments against him.

Even after his party insisting on his resignation, Mani had put up a firm fight to remain in power. He was then forced by Congress party leaders who are the lead partners to the UDF. This compelled him to quit as the party stood firm that the resignation was inevitable.

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Finance Minister Appeals To Insist On Bill For Every Purchase

the government would start a three-digit consumer helpline number

Finance Minister Appeals To Insist On Bill For Every Purchase
Finance Minister Appeals To Insist On Bill For Every Purchase. Flickr

Seeking consumers’ participation in curbing tax evasion, Finance Minister Piyush Goyal on the eve of completion of one year of GST rollout on Saturday appealed to them to insist on bill for every purchase saying it would help the government check evasion and reduce tax rate on each item by as much as 4-5 per cent. He further said the government would start a three-digit consumer helpline number to enable them to lodge complaint against erring traders or any other kind of tax evasion.

Touted as the biggest indirect tax reform since Independence, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) was rolled out last year on July 1. “I want to appeal to the people that they should demand a bill whenever they go to purchase any goods. If you start asking for a bill…if there’s awareness about this, then we can reduce rates by 4-5 per cent for every item (under GST),” Goyal told reporters here.

He said if any shop says that they will sell at a lower price if the consumer does not demand a bill, then the consumer should immediately file a complaint, he said. “We will soon provide a three-digit simple number which will work as a call centre where customers can complain. We will ensure full confidentiality of the complainant,” Goyal said. The endeavour will be to start the helpline number within 15-20 days, he said. A nationwide campaign too could be launched for creating consumer awareness about demanding bills for purchases made. “If everyone starts giving bill then competition will be on quality and customer service and not on ability to cheat the system,” Goyal said. He further said the government wants to reduce the burden of taxation on consumers but revenue needs to increase and support of states is also needed to cut rates where it is essential.

bills owing. Flickr

With formalisation of economy, the government will have more elbow room to reduce rates, he said.

Also read: Out of Total Tax Fine of $15 billion, Apple Pays $1.77 billion to Irish Government

Goyal also assured small businesses if they face any trouble, then they can write to him and it would be resolved. He said amendments would be introduced to the GST law in monsoon session to increase composition scheme threshold from the current Rs 1 crore. The GST Council had last year decided to increase the threshold to Rs 1.5 crore and also decided to amend the law to increase the statutory threshold to Rs 2 crore. (IANS)