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New Delhi: Reacting to a grim picture of rural India projected by the Socio-Economic and Caste Census 2011, Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley, on Sunday said the passage of bills on Goods and Service Tax (GST) and land acquisition is necessary to create jobs and remove poverty.

As per the latest official data released on Friday, for nearly 75 percent of the 17.9 crore (nearly 180 million) households in rural India, the monthly income of the highest-earning member is less than Rs.5,000 ($83), and 40 percent households are landless, its members toiling as manual casual labourers.

“Improving this situation is the number one priority of this government,” Jaitley said in a Facebook post titled “Message of the Socio-Economic and Caste Census”.

“The government is creating the conditions for greater private investment: implementing the GST and creating a common market, reforming the land law, easing the costs of doing business and unblocking stalled projects are all measures that will improve the conditions for investment,” the finance minister said.

“Passing the GST and reforming the land law will accelerate this investment turnaround,” he added.

While the GST Bill is currently being reviewed by a select committee of the Rajya Sabha, the Land Acquisition Bill has been referred the joint committee of parliament.

The GST is seen as the key to facilitating industrial growth and improving the country’s business climate. By subsuming most indirect taxes levied by the central and state governments such as excise duty, service tax, Value Added Tax and sales tax, the new regime proposes to facilitate a common market across the country, leading to economies of scale and reducing inflation through an efficient supply chain.

The passage of the bill and it becoming a law is a lengthy process.

Being a constitutional amendment bill, which was passed by the Lok Sabha, it needs to be passed by the Rajya Sabha with a two-thirds majority and then ratified by at least 15 state legislatures before it is sent for the President’s assent. (IANS)


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The Centre will launch a pilot project on the use of indigenously manufactured drones for delivering medicines in the undulating landscape of Jammu and surrounding areas from Saturday

The Centre will launch a pilot project on the use of indigenously manufactured drones for delivering medicines in the undulating landscape of Jammu and surrounding areas from Saturday with a focus on vaccines delivery initially. "This is going to be a pilot project for the area. The drone is developed and manufactured entirely by our scientists," Union Minister for Science & Technology, Dr Jitendra Singh told mediapersons. Singh said he himself will be launching the project at Jammu.

The drone is developed by the scientists at Bengaluru's National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL), a constituent of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), an autonomous Society that is headed by the Prime Minister. For now, the delivery would be limited to Covid vaccines and once successful, it would be expanded to be used for regular delivery of medicines in the remote, hilly areas.

drone flying in sky The drone is developed by the scientists at Bengaluru's National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL). | Photo by Jason Blackeye on Unsplash

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According to him Amitabh Bachchan is a great actor in the industry.

Bollywood actor Abhishek Bachchan shares how he feels when people compare him with his father Amitabh Bachchan on the singing reality show 'Sa Re Ga Ma Pa'. He also requests contestant Rajshree Bag to sing a track 'Bahon Mein Chale Aao' featuring his mother Jaya Bachchan.

Abhishek said after looking at the performance of Rajshree, who is often compared with Lata Mangeshkar on the show, that she reminds him of being compared with his father. "Rajshree, whenever I have got the chance to watch the show, I've seen people compare you to Lata didi. It actually reminded me about how people compare me with my father and ask me how I feel about it."

According to him Amitabh Bachchan is a great actor in the industry and this is what he says to everyone making these comparisons. "My answer to them is that there's no greater actor in this film industry than Amitabh Bachchan and if I'm being compared to him, I am sure I must have done something good."

"Similarly, your voice has a different kind of magic like Lata ji and that's why people are comparing your voice with her. I feel you should always take this as a compliment," he concluded. 'Sa Re Ga Ma Pa' airs on Saturday and Sunday on Zee TV. (IANS/ MBI)


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Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Winters in India have always beckoned for that hot, steaming bowl of tomato and pepper rasam or the mellow, millet based Raab.

By IANSlife

Winters in India have always beckoned for that hot, steaming bowl of tomato and pepper rasam or the mellow, millet based Raab. Certain dishes like sarson ka saag, undhiyu, nimona pulao are winter specialites in the country. Seasonal food has always been an Indian speciality -- we switch our choice in fruits, vegetables, sometimes even grains with the onset of different season. The preference of using specific ingredients during certain climates is visible in our sweets as well. It's common to find local and traditional delicacies made of jaggery, instead of sugar during the winters. Case in point -- the Nolen Gur Rasgulla, a speciality made in Odisha and West Bengal between November to February.

Sarson Ka Saag | Sarson ka saag is traditional Punjabi dish Certain dishes like sarson ka saag, undhiyu, nimona pulao are winter specialites in the country. | Flickr

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