Traders across India to go on strike on Feb 26 against arbitrary GST

Agencies
February 25, 2021

Bharat Bandh on February 26 as 8 crore traders to protest against GST

New Delhi, Feb 25: Going ahead with their protest against arbitrary regulations and changes in the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and alleged norm violations by e-commerce giants, traders across the country will go a day-long strike on Friday.

In a statement, the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) the umbrella body which has called for the strike said that over 8 crore traders belonging to more than 40,000 trade associations across country will observe the 'Bharat Vyapar Bandh' to protest against some of the "draconian, arbitrary and critical" amendments made recently in GST rules.

It will also urge the government to rectify glitches in e-commerce for preventing violation of law by foreign e-commerce companies.

The All India Transport Welfare Association (AITWA) an apex body of 1 crore transporters have already supported the strike and has also announced 'Chakka Jam' of transport sector on Friday all over India.

CAIT Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal said that not only traders but even small industries, hawkers, and women entrepreneurs among others will also join the bandh.

Further, associations of chartered accountants and tax advocates have supported the strike and have informed their clients not to visit their offices on Friday.

Khandelwal further said that on Friday as a mark of protest, 'dharna' will be held in more than 1,500 towns and cities across states and no traders will login to GST portal to register their protest.

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News Network
April 4,2021

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Hyderabad, Apr 4: Former India skipper and Hyderabad Cricket Association president, Mohammed Azharuddin on Sunday offered the state body's facilities to BCCI to host the upcoming IPL matches in case the games are shifted out of Covid-hit Mumbai.

The BCCI has decided to keep Indore and Hyderabad as stand by venues for the upcoming IPL beginning on April 9 following a massive surge in Covid-19 cases in Mumbai, which is scheduled to host 10 games.

The move came after 10 groundsmen of the Wankhede Stadium and a few event managers had tested positive for the deadly virus.

"In these difficult times there is all the more reasons for us to stand by each other. Hyderabad Cricket Association would like to offer its facilities to @BCCI to ensure that IPL2021 is conducted in safe and secure venues," Azharuddin wrote on his twitter handle.

Mumbai reported 9,108 new cases of coronavirus on Saturday and if things spiral out of control there could be a mini-lockdown.

However, a senior BCCI office-bearer on Saturday exuded confidence of hosting the games in Mumbai even if the situation worsens.

"Look, even if there is a lockdown, the teams are in bio-bubble and also it's a closed-door event. So we are still confident that IPL games in Mumbai will be held as per schedule with Delhi Capitals playing Chennai Super Kings on April 10 on the second day of the tournament," he had said.

"But Hyderabad and Indore are there on stand by in case the situation goes out of hand."

As of now, none of the teams currently in Mumbai -- Delhi Capitals, Mumbai Indians, Rajasthan Royals, Punjab Kings -- have access to the Wankhede Stadium.

The first match at the Wankhede is scheduled to be held on April 10, with last year's finalists Delhi Capitals taking on three-time champions Chennai Super Kings. 

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News Network
April 2,2021

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Bengaluru, Apr 2: A massive forest fire has broken out on the campus of Bangalore University located on Mysuru Road in Bengaluru. 

The fire broke out on Friday morning in the shrubbery located near Pariksha Bhavan on the campus, which is 100 metres away from the administrative block. 

Two engines have been sent to the spot to help douse the blaze. An official from the Bengaluru fire department said at 1 pm that fire fighting operations have been going on for two hours. No injuries have been reported so far. Visuals from the spot showed a large patch of dry grass on fire, with officials trying to douse it.

Grass fire and the dry weather and higher temperatures in Bengaluru may have accelerated the fire. Such fires are common in Bengaluru and officials say the fire may have been sparked by a cigarette butt that may have been disposed of at the spot. 

An employee working at the University said that the campus has many eucalyptus trees, which create a lot of dry leaves in the summer, which are susceptible to catching fire. 

The lack of shade also adds to the factors that help the fire spread, the University said, adding that if such incidents need to be stopped, the eucalyptus trees need to be replaced and other trees need to be planted in their place. 

Last year too, a forest fire had broken out at the University's Jnanabharati campus in March 2020, and at that time too, some dried eucalyptus leaves that had piled up at the spot had caught fire.

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News Network
March 31,2021

Bengaluru, Mar 31: In a major political development in Karnataka, Rural Development & Panchayat Raj (RDPR) Minister KS Eshwarappa today approached Raj Bhavan with a formal complaint against Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa’s ‘direct interference’ in the affairs of his department.

Eshwarappa met Governor Vajubhai R Vala with a 5-page letter describing “serious lapses and authoritarian way of running the administration” by Yediyurappa. 

“I would like to quote important decisions taken by the CM recently...by sanctioning huge funds on the request of the MLAs to the tune of Rs 774 crore under RDPR Department by bypassing Minister-in-charge," Eshwarappa stated. 

Apparently, the Chief Minister’s Office exerted pressure on the RDPR principal secretary to issue a government order for the release of funds which was “stayed by me on the advice of State Party President and other senior leaders of the party,” Eshwarappa stated. 

On March 4, Eshwarappa alleged that works worth Rs 460 crore were sanctioned by bypassing him. 

Although the two allocations and another worth Rs 65 crore were stayed by Eshwarappa, it was superseded by the CM. "I have registered my strong objection through a letter highlighting the indiscriminate sanction of funds to various MLAs/persons in violation of rules, but it was of no avail," Eshwarappa stated.

Eshwarappa has also written to BJP national general secretary Arun Singh, who is in charge of the party’s affairs in Karnataka. In that letter, Eshwarappa alleged that “substantial” allocation was made to constituencies headed by non-BJP MLAs. Moreover, the Finance Department, controlled by Yediyurappa, was yet to release Rs 2,398 crore allocated to the RDPR department. 

The Finance department, according to Eshwarappa, was sanctioning huge funds in the form of special grants.

"The above actions...has put me in an embarrassing situation in the eyes of our party MLAs and party workers, who are very critical about the allocation of special grants to the constituencies belonging to opposition party MLAs," he stated. 

The MLAs are complaining that "adequate grants are not being allocated for the development of their constituencies, in spite of having our own party government in the state,” he added.

Eshwarappa said that he had brought this to the notice of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah and other senior party leaders. 

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