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Lok Sabha passes Taxation Laws (Amendment) Bill with 4 govt amendments

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman moved the Taxation Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2019 for consideration and passage in Lok Sabha. The Bill seeks to replace the Ordinance which was promulgated by the President in September. The government through the ordinance reduced the corporate tax rate from 30 per cent to 22 per cent, and for new manufacturing companies to 15 per cent. Sitharaman said the government’s decision to reduce corporate tax rate was aimed at attracting investment and creating jobs. The companies opting for lower tax rates, however, will not be entitled to claim any rebate or deductions.

The government said there is no proposal to reduce taxes on petrol and diesel. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman told the Lok Sabha that no where in the world do the prices of petrol and diesel remain steady for a particular period of time She said there is an increase of 5 per cent in the gross direct tax collection till November this fiscal, adding that the govt has maintained tight fiscal discipline.

In the Lok Sabha, BJP demanded Cong leader Adhir Rajnan Chaudhary take back his controversial remarks on PM Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah.

BJP also sought unconditional apology from him. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said the remarks hurt the soul of the constitution. The Minister said, Congress leader termed Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah as infiltrators and this was an insult to voters as PM Modi is not just the leader of a party but he is the Prime Minister of the country.

Prohibition of Electronic Cigarettes Bill, 2019 was passed in the Rajya Sabha. It has already been passed by the Lok Sabha. The members supported the bill but also expressed concern at the rising cases of deaths due to consumption of tobacco and deemanded more measures to be taken by the government.

Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan said there is a need to take steps to prohibit tobacco altogether.

Leaders of various parties raised many issues in the Rajya Sabha including expensive treatment in private hospitals, adverse impact of chemicals and fertilisers on manure and other issues of public importance.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said in Rajya Sabha that the strike by trade unions of Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd was in the process of being called off following meetings between the management and labour unions and a pact in this regard is likely to be signed on December 5. The minister informed the workers had gone on a strike from October 14 to October 22 to press for their demand of 15 per cent fitment benefit and 35 per cent perks with effect from January 1, 2017 on par with executives and that they had resumed work on the direction of the High Court.

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