Naresh Goyal, wife deboard Jet; lenders take control

Naresh Goyal, wife deboard Jet; lenders take cockpit control

Giving up chairmanship after more than 26 years, embattled Jet Airways’ founder Naresh Goyal on Monday quit as a board member, with the lenders taking control of the cockpit and deciding to infuse Rs 1,500 crore immediately into the ailing airline.

Struggling to stay afloat amid a debt burden of over Rs 8,000 crore, the board of the country’s first private full service carrier also approved conversion of banks’ debt into equity and induction of nominee directors of the lenders, who would become majority stakeholders.

Image result for Naresh Goyal,

Expressing happiness over the lenders’ decision, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said India needs more airlines, “otherwise airfares would rise”.

“Banks have kept self interest in mind by trying to keep it as a going entity so that they can recover their dues,” he said in Delhi hours after the airline’s board cleared the debt resolution plan.

Bringing an end to weeks of uncertainty over the future of the cash-strapped carrier, the board has approved immediate fund infusion of up to Rs 1,500 crore by lenders as well as conversion of debt into equity.

Naresh Goyal, his wife Anita Goyal and Etihad Airways’ nominee director Kevin Knight have quit the board.

Gulf carrier Etihad, a strategic partner, holds 24 per cent stake in Jet Airways while Naresh Goyal has a shareholding of 51 per cent.

Goyal’s stake would come down to 25 per cent while that of Etihad would reduce to 12 per cent. The consortium of Indian lenders, led by State Bank of India (SBI), would become the majority shareholders of Jet Airways, the airline said in a statement.

The airline said two nominees of the promoter and one nominee of Etihad Airways would continue on the board, which would also see induction of two people nominated by the lenders.

SBI Chairman Rajnish Kumar said Naresh Goyal would be eligible to bid for the airline when the lenders auction it next month.

The board approved conversion of “Re 1 of lenders’ debt into equity by the issuance of 11.4 crore equity shares”, in accordance with RBI circular issued on February 12, 2018.

As per that circular, lenders have to start resolution process under the insolvency law if a borrower fails to repay in 180 days after the first default.

Shares of Jet Airways, which has been operating for over 25 years, zoomed 15.5 per cent on Monday after reports of Naresh Goyal’s exit poured in. The official announcement about the revamp came soon after the markets closed.

“The company will also engage with payment intermediaries for release of trapped cash. The airline will leverage the funding to partly clear pending dues towards lessors, vendors, creditors and employees in a phased manner.

“The move will see Jet Airways re-deploy several of its grounded aircraft back into its network, helping renew many of the routes it had temporarily suspended, which will help restore normalcy of operations,” it noted.

Financial crunch has forced the airline to ground more than 80 of its total 119 planes. At least 54 aircraft have been grounded due to non-payment of lease rentals.

An Interim Management Committee (IMC) has been constituted to oversee the overall financial and operational performance of the airline. The panel would be  under the overall supervision of the board of directors with the support of McKinsey & Co.

“As part of the resolution plan, the lenders will also begin the process of sale/issue of shares to new investors which is expected to be completed in the June quarter,” the statement said.

Naresh Goyal, who became chairman of the company in April 1992, said no sacrifice is too big for him to safeguard the interest of the airline and the families of its 22,000 employees. In a letter to employees, Goyal said the decision to step down from the board is not the end of the journey but the start of a brand new chapter.

Approval of the debt-recast plan will put the carrier on a “sounder and sustainable” financial footing, he said.

Against the backdrop of salary payments being delayed, the airline said the promoter and all stakeholders “remain fully committed to ensure deferred salaries and dues to external vendors and aircraft lessors are cleared on priority in the foreseeable future”.

SpiceJet Chairman and Managing Director Ajay Singh said, “Today is indeed a sad day for Indian aviation”.

 “By launching a truly world class airline, Naresh and Anita Goyal made India proud. This is also a wake-up call for Indian policy makers. We urgently need to address structural challenges that make India’s airlines uncompetitive to airlines around the world,” Singh said

According to Jet Airways, the board unanimously and unequivocally lauded Goyal’s vision in giving birth to the iconic brand and also averred that he has always been way ahead of the times. The board also appreciated Goyal’s sterling role in IATA, resulting in the innumerable airline codeshare partnerships he built for the airline.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is a grouping of around 290 airlines, including Jet Airways.

“The board also took particular and deeply grateful cognisance of the Chairman’s noble, large-hearted self-sacrifice in graciously stepping down from all that he held dear for the sake of the 22,000 employees of the company,” the statement said.

-PTI | 26 March 2019 | Mumbai/New Delhi

Rafale deal: Jaitley says Hollande contradicted himself

Rafale deal: Arun Jaitley says Hollande contradicted himself; Dassault chose Reliance on its own

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Sunday said former French President Francois Hollande contradicted his own statement with regard to the Rafale deal and that neither the Indian nor the French government played any role in selection of Reliance as offset partner by Dassault.

A political controversy has erupted over Hollande’s statement that the Indian government wanted the Anil Ambani-led Reliance Defence to be chosen as offset partner of Dassault, the manufacturer of the Rafale fighter jets.

“The French Government and M/s Dassault Aviation have categorically denied the correctness of the former President’s first statement.

“The French Government has stated that the decision with regard to the offset contracts of Dassault Aviation are taken by the company and not the Government,” Mr. Jaitley said in a Facebook post.

“Dassault Aviation itself has suggested that they have entered into multiple contracts with several public sector and private sector companies with regard to the offset contracts and the decision is entirely theirs,” he added.

Union Minister Arun Jaitley. File photo.The partners (Dassault and Reliance) selected themselves as former President Hollande now says, Mr. Jaitley said in the post titled ‘A Questionable Statement Which Circumstances & Facts Demolish’

“This contradicts his first questionable statement which the French Government and Dassault have denied. The facts contradict the same. His second statement in Montreal, Canada to AFP (news agency) makes the veracity of his first statement even more questionable,” the minister said.

AFP reported that Hollande told it on the sidelines of a meeting in Canada Friday that France “did not choose Reliance in any way”. When asked whether India had put pressure on Reliance and Dassault to work together, Hollande said he was unaware and “only Dassault can comment on this”.

Full text of Mr. Jaitley’s statement

A controversy is sought to be created on the basis of a statement made by the former French President Hollande, that the Reliance Defence ‘partnership’ with Dassault Aviation was entered at the suggestion of the Indian Government. In a subsequent statement the former President has sought to suggest that Reliance Defence emerged on the scene after the agreement with the Indian Government was entered into. He has, in a subsequent statement, said that he is ‘not aware’ if Government ever lobbied for Reliance Defence and that ‘the partners chose themselves’. Truth cannot have two versions.

The French Government and M/s Dassault Aviation have categorically denied the correctness of the former President’s first statement. The French Government has stated that the decision with regard to the offset contracts of Dassault Aviation are taken by the company and not the Government. Dassault Aviation itself has suggested that they have entered into multiple contracts with several public sector and private sector companies with regard to the offset contracts and the decision is entirely theirs.

Without commenting on the correctness or otherwise of a controversy in the French media, it may be mentioned that the former French President, Hollande, is countering statement made against him with regard to a conflict of interest in his dealing with the Reliance Defence.

The accuracy of the statements made by the individuals may be questioned but circumstances never lie. This is evident from the following facts:

  • There is no ‘partnership’, as suggested by the former President, with regard to the 36 Rafale aircrafts to be supplied by Dassault Aviation to the Government of India. It was a Government to Government agreement under which the complete weaponised aircrafts are to come to the Indian Air Force. No manufacturing is to be done in India. It is, therefore, erroneous for anybody to suggest that there is a ‘partnership’ in the supply of the 36 Rafale aircrafts.
  • M/s. Reliance Industries Ltd., in February, 2012, had entered into an MoU with Dassault Aviation. This was reported by the PTI on 12.2.2012. This was at a stage when the contract relating to 126 Rafale aircrafts, of which 18 were to be manufactured in France and 108 in India, was at an advance stage of consideration by the UPA Government. Rahul Gandhi’s misplaced criticism could equally apply to the 2012 MoU.
  • The offset contract ensures investment by the original equipment supplier i.e. Dassault Aviation, in India, in as much as they make purchases from Indian companies to the extent of fifty percent (in this case). The choice of the offset partner under the 2005 offset policy is of M/s Dassault Aviation and they have selected several public and private sector companies to make the supplies.
  • The offset partner is selected entirely by the Dassault Aviation, the original equipment manufacturer, and neither the French Government and nor the Indian Government has any say in the matter.
  • It is no coincidence that on 30.8.2018 Shri Rahul Gandhi had tweeted that “Globalised corruption. This #Rafale aircraft really does fly far and fast! It’s also going to drop some big bunker buster bombs in the next couple of weeks.”

The former French President’s first statement rhymes with Rahul Gandhi’s prediction.

  • The Congress Party’s official handle on 31.8.2018 had carried the tweet of one of its leader “It is evident that Anil Ambani bribed President Hollande through his actor-partner to get the Dassault partnership.” For the Congress Party to allege that a former President had been bribed by an Indian business group and then use him as a primary witness, particularly when he is facing criticism for an alleged conflict of interest within his own country.
  • The former French President’s first statement that the Indian business group’s name was proposed by Government of India has now been substituted by him to the effect that the suggestion he is ‘not aware’ of the Government of India ever lobbied for Reliance Defence. He further said that the ‘partners’ chose themselves (AFP Report dated 22.9.2018).
  • Rahul Gandhi has made an absurd suggestion that the interest of Indian soldiers has been compromised with. By whom? The UPA which delayed the acquisition which would have added to the Military’s combat ability or the NDA which expedited the same at a lower cost.

The conclusion

One Reliance Group was a part of this deal since 2012. It dropped out of defence production. The other Reliance Group was already in defence. They are not partners in the Rafale deal. They have no contract with either Government of India or Government of France. They were not selected as one of the many offset partners by any Government. ‘The partners (Dassault and Reliance) selected themselves’ as former President Hollande now says. This contradicts his first questionable statement which the French Government and Dassault have denied. The facts contradict the same. His second statement in Montreal, Canada to AFP makes the veracity of his first statement even more questionable.

NEW DELHI, SEPTEMBER 23, 2018

Telugu Desam Party Ministers to quit Modi Cabinet

Telugu Desam Party Ministers to quit Modi Cabinet at the Centre

Telugu Desam party of Andhra Pradesh pulled out its ministers from being part of the NDA cabinet late on Wednesday night, just a couple of hours after Finance Minister Arun Jaitley ruled out the possibility of grant of Special Category Status (SCS) for the State.

TDP Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju and Minister of State Y.S. Chowdary will resign from the government on Thursday, TDP President and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu announced.

However, Mr. Naidu clarified that TDP will not be quitting NDA just yet.

Telugu Desam Party“The Centre has been taking one sided decisions and our patience has run out now. When the purpose of joining the union cabinet hasn’t been fulfilled, it’s best to resign now,” Mr. Naidu tweeted after announcing the decision, adding that he had tried reaching out to Prime Minister Narendra Modi but the latter had been “unavailable”. “It’s a crucial time. We have to stand, we have to fight, we have to get it done,” he added.

Continuing agitation

TDP has been agitating both inside and outside Parliament since the union budget was announced on February 1, claiming that none of the State’s demands were met. Things came to a head on Wednesday after Mr. Jaitley, in a press conference in the capital, shifted the blame on the Andhra Pradesh government and TDP. Without mincing words, he said that the Centre was “committed”  to giving financial assistance to Andhra government, but said they had been modifying their demands.

Soon after Mr. Jaitley’s press conference wrapped up, the party went into a huddle. Mr. Naidu had a teleconference with TDP MPs who were in Delhi for the ongoing Parliament session, in addition to consulting legislators in Andhra Pradesh. The overwhelming view was to pull out of NDA.

Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajpathi Raju who was attending council of ministers meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi was kept out of loop. “He was told only after he came out of the meeting,” a senior TDP MP said.

“We are committed to give monetary equivalent of a special status to Andhra Pradesh. We are awaiting response from Andhra Pradesh government,” Mr. Jaitley said in his briefing, adding that just because it was a political issue, the quantum of assistance could not be increased.

The move came just hours after Finance Minister Arun Jaitley ruled out the possibility of grant of Special Category Status (SCS) for the State.

Citing the 14th Finance Commission, the Finance Minister said that category of “special status” no longer existed. Therefore Andhra Pradesh could no longer be categorised as such.

He also cited technical reasons for the delay in the releasing assistance to the State. The AP government, Mr. Jaitley said, initially wanted the assistance to be routed as loans through external agencies like World Bank, Asian Development Bank and so on. Under this, the Union government would have paid 90% of the loans.

“This year [in] January they modified the request; instead of externally aided projects, they asked us to provide it through NABARD loan,” Mr. Jaitley said, adding that it was almost as if union government was waiting to pay the funds but was waiting for a bank account number.

Uneasy equation

For over a year, the two allies have shared an uneasy equation. In January, Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Mr. Naidu after a gap of a year.  Mr Naidu, in his speech in Andhra assembly, said that he visited the capital 29 times with no results to show.

As a last ditch effort, on Monday evening a delegations led by TDP minister Y.S. Chowdary had scheduled a meeting with BJP President Amit Shah.  Mr. Shah however left for Guwahati before the meeting. The delegation which included Andhra Pradesh Finance Minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu had to leave without any concrete assurances.

Storm clouds over the alliance

BJP leaders who had seen the storm clouds over the alliance building were watching the developments with an air of resignation. Senior office bearers of the party said that the BJP had “tried till the last minute” to salvage the alliance and added that they “knew” that TDP Chief N. Chandrababu Naidu did not “really” want to break the alliance.

“He (Mr. Naidu) is under a lot of pressure as YSR Congress Chief Jagan Mohan Reddy is exerting great pressure on the implementation of the Special Category Status and TDP’s continuance in the government is a sign that he is not putting enough pressure on the Centre,” said the source. YSRCP MPs have threatened to resign their seats in Parliament on April 6 if the SCS is not granted.

The party leader said that “neither of us wants to break the alliance but the pressure on Naidu to take precipitate action is great, with elections just a year away.”

-MARCH 07, 2018

Union Budget 2018: Largest health programme announced

Union Budget 2018: World’s largest healthcare programme announced 

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday announced two new initiatives under the Ayushman Bharat Program in the Union Budget 2018. Under the programme, Mr. Jaitley announced a new Flagship National Health Protection Scheme, providing health insurance cover of ₹5 lakh per family per year. The Scheme will cover 10 crore vulnerable families, with approximately 50 crore beneficiaries.

The Union Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs, Shri Arun Jaitley departs from North Block to Rashtrapati Bhavan and Parliament House, along with the Minister of State for Finance and Shipping, Shri P. Radhakrishnan, the Minister of State for Finance, Shri Shiv Pratap Shukla and the senior officials to present the General Budget 2018-19, in New Delhi on February 01, 2018.
The Union Minister for Finance and Corporate Affairs, Shri Arun Jaitley departs from North Block to Rashtrapati Bhavan and Parliament House, along with the Minister of State for Finance and Shipping, Shri P. Radhakrishnan, the Minister of State for Finance, Shri Shiv Pratap Shukla and the senior officials to present the General Budget 2018-19, in New Delhi on February 01, 2018.

“We are slowly progressing towards universal health coverage,” Mr. Jaitley said in his speech, adding that the Scheme will be the “world’s largest healthcare programme”.

Mr. Jaitley also announced the creation of Health and Wellness centres, which will “bring healthcare closer to home”. These centres, 1.5 lakh in number, will provide free essential drugs and diagnostic services.

Rs. 1200 crores have been allocated for this.

Milind Kothari, Managing Partner, Head-Tax and Regulatory services, BDO India said, “The announcement in the area of healthcare is clearly path-breaking for the sheer size, coverage and the amount committed per family. This ushers India firmly in the next generation of social security as India moves aggressively towards a progressive developing economy.”

Mr. Jaitley also announced the creation of Health and Wellness centres, which will “bring healthcare closer to home”. These centres, 1.5 lakh in number, will provide free essential drugs and diagnostic services. Rs. 1200 crores have been allocated for this. Milind Kothari, Managing Partner, Head-Tax and Regulatory services, BDO India said, “The announcement in the area of healthcare is clearly path-breaking for the sheer size, coverage and the amount committed per family. This ushers India firmly in the next generation of social security as India moves aggressively towards a progressive developing economy.”

-FEBRUARY 01, 2018

GST rates on 29 goods, 53 services cut

GST rates on 29 goods, 53 services cut

The Goods and Services Tax- GST Council has reduced the rates on 29 goods and 53 categories of services, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said following the Council’s meeting. Against the backdrop of declining GST collections and waning compliance, the Council also discussed in detail various approaches to ease the return filing compliance burden, and the need for the implementation of anti-evasion measures.

GSTSome of the services for which the rates have been cut include tailoring (18% to 5%), admission to theme parks (28% to 18%), and petroleum and natural gas mining and exploration (18% to 12%). The goods on which the rates have been reduced include biodiesel buses used for public transport (28% to 18%), sugar boiled confectionery, biodiesel, drinking water packed in 20 litre containers (all from 18% to 12%), and LPG supplied to domestic consumers by private distributors (18% to 5%). The new rates would come into effect on January 25.

“Rates have again been rationalised on few items, which is a step in the right direction,” Pratik Jain, Leader, Indirect Tax at PwC India, wrote in a note. “One would expect that over the next few months, this process would continue, particularly with respect to 28% category, which should only be for select luxury and demerit products,” he wrote.

Mr. Jaitley said that while the latest round of rate reductions would have an affect on the Centre’s revenues, the impact would be small.

“It was the opinion of the Council that so far we have relied on unilateral declarations by traders,” Mr. Jaitley said. “It was agreed that there is a need to build in anti-evasion measures. The e-waybill system [to be rolled out on February 1] will be one of these. As these anti-evasion measures are implemented, the revenues should start picking up again.”

Regarding easing the compliance burden, Mr. Jaitley said that the Council was considering systems where the invoices of the buyers and sellers could be matched easily. “The suggestion was that the filing of the form 3B should continue,” Mr. Jaitley said. “The sellers or suppliers should also load their invoices and give the details of whom the supplies were made to. This should act as a deterrent [against evasion] that the details in the invoices and the form 3B must match. Initially, the system would be of the form 3B and a suppliers’ invoice. It will be a very easy system.”

Mr. Jaitley, however, said that no decision had been taken in this regard and that the Council would take it up during its next meeting, the date for which had not been decided as yet. The inclusion of key sectors like petroleum and real estate in GST was not taken up in this meeting, according to him.

NEW DELHI, JANUARY 18, 2018

Political funding; Govt opens for further cleanse

Govt open to proposals to further cleanse political funding:  Arun Jaitley

The electoral bonds mechanism is a substantial improvement in transparency over the present system and the government is open to suggestions to further cleanse Political funding, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said today.

In a Facebook post, Jaitley said the conventional practice of funding the political system was to take donations as well as undertake expenditures in cash.Govt open to proposals to further cleanse pol funding: Jaitley

The sources are anonymous or pseudonymous. The quantum of money was never disclosed and the system ensures unclean money coming from unidentifiable sources.

“It is a wholly non-transparent system. Most political groups seem fairly satisfied with the present arrangement and would not mind this status-quo to continue.

“The effort, therefore, is to run down any alternative system which is devised to cleanse up the political funding mechanism,” Jaitley said.

The finance minister had last week announced the contours of the electoral bonds, which will be sold by country’s latest lender SBI and will have a tenure of just 15 days. The bonds are being pitched as an alternative to cash donations made to political parties.

Jaitley said the choice has now to be “consciously” made between the existing system of substantial cash donations involving unclean money and other transparent options like cheque, online transactions or electoral bonds.

“While all three methods involve clean money, the first two are totally transparent and the electoral bonds scheme is a substantial improvement in transparency over the present system of no-transparency,” he said.

“The government is willing to consider all suggestions to further strengthen the cleansing of political funding in India. It has to be borne in mind that impractical suggestions will not improve the cash denominated system. They would only consolidate it,” Jaitley wrote.

He said India, despite being the largest democracy in the world, has not been able to evolve a transparent political funding system in the last seven decades.

“The round the year functioning of the political parties involves a large expenditure… These expenditures run into hundreds of crores. Yet there has not been a transparent funding mechanism of the political system,” he said.-07 January 2018 | PTI | New Delhi

Bangladesh signs $ 4.5 bn loan deal with India

Bangladesh signs $ 4.5 bn loan deal with India

Under the agreement, Bangladesh will have to purchase 65 to 75 per cent of the services, goods or works from the Indian market with the money to be provided under the new LoC.

Bangladesh signed a $ 4.5 billion third line of credit (LoC) agreement with India for its infrastructure and social sector development.

The agreement was signed in the presence of Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and his Bangladeshi counterpart A.M.A Muhith after the two leaders held talks here.

BangladeshEconomic Relations Division Secretary Kazi Shofiqul Azam signed the deal on behalf of Bangladesh, while Managing Director of the Export-Import Bank of India (Exim) David Rasquinha signed for India.

To fund 17 major projects

The new Indian line of credit, worth a staggering $ 4.5 billion, will be used to fund 17 major projects in Bangladesh, which include electricity, railroads, roads, shipping and ports.

As with previous LoC agreements, Bangladesh will pay an interest rate of 1 per cent a year. It will have 20 years to pay back the loans, with a grace period of five years.

“Bangladesh has developed significantly on the socio-economic front in the past seven years,” Mr. Jaitley said after the signing of the deal. “We have stood by Bangladesh’s attempts to develop and we will do so in the future. This significant agreement is a continuation of that effort,” he said.

Mr. Muhith said, “Bangladesh and India have excellent relations at the moment.” “They stood by us during our independence. We hope they will continue to do so in the future,” he was quoted as saying by bdnews.

The $ 4.5 bn deal was announced during Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visit to India in April. Mr. Jaitley’s trip to Bangladesh was used to finalise the agreement.

Under the agreement, Bangladesh will have to purchase 65 to 75 per cent of the services, goods or works from the Indian market with the money to be provided under the new LoC following the precedence of the previous two nearly identical agreements.

Bangladesh has two other LoCs open with India: the first one was signed in 2010, and the second one in 2016. These LoCs are collectively worth Tk3.06 billion, but till last year, the Bangladesh government has been able to use only $ 576 million.

Some projects under the first LoC of $ 862 million faced delay in implementation while the physical works of the 14 projects under the second LoC of $ 2 billion were yet to start.

– PTI, DHAKA, OCTOBER 04, 2017 

Arun Jaitley tears into Yashwant Sinha

Arun Jaitley tears into Yashwant Sinha, terms him a ‘job applicant at 80’ 

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday tore into former finance minister and BJP veteran Yashwant Sinha for his criticism of the government’s handling of the economy. Without mentioning Mr Sinha, Mr. Jaitley referred to him as a ‘job applicant’ who appeared to be working in tandem with another ex-finance minister P. Chidambaram and had the ‘luxury of being a columnist’.

Arun Jaitley“I have some very distinguished predecessors in my present job, one of whom is a former president (Pranab Mukherjee), one is a former Prime Minister (Manmohan Singh) — and I am certainly not referring to them. The others have decided to act in concert. Speaking on persons and then bypassing the issues is very easily done,” the Minister said after launching a book co-edited by the Chairman of the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Council and Niti Aayog member Bibek Debroy and Press Secretary to the President, Ashok Malik.

“Probably, a more appropriate title for your book would have been ‘India at 70, Modi at 3.5 and a job applicant at 80’,” Mr Jaitley told Mr Debroy and Mr Malik, whose book is titled ‘India at 70, Modi at 3.5 – Capturing India’s transformation under Narendra Modi.

Stressing that the government’s efforts over the past three years have been focused on ensuring that the benefits of growth percolate to the poor and improve their quality of life while dispelling the policy paralysis, Mr. Jaitley red-flagged the abandonment of the centrist space by the Congress and the emergence of an ideological polarisation in the country caused by a convergence between the ultra-left and extreme Jihadi elements.

The decisive nature of the government will help revive private investments, Mr. Jaitley said, contrasting it to the ‘indifference in dealing with that problem when it was taking place during 2012-14.”

“Just looking the other way is not the approach of the government. …It’s a situation I am sure we will be able to respond to appropriately. India at 70 is an India which we look up to, where we want to continue to occupy the space of a fast growing economy.”

“We want each village to be connected by road by 2019, electrified by early next year, and each house to get a power connection by 2018-end… The entire additional resources that come from growth are blended with the needs of this section. This is how we visualise India at 70. Obviously, when India is at 70, there are always attempts to change the narrative,” he said.

“I must confess that I do not have the luxury as yet of being a former finance minister; nor do I have the luxury of being a former finance minister who’s turned columnist. Therefore, I can conveniently forget a policy paralysis, I can conveniently forget the 15% NPAs (non-performing assets) of 1998-2002, I can conveniently forget the $4 billion forex reserves left in 1991 and I can switch over and change the narrative,” Mr Jaitley said, in an oblique reference to Mr Sinha’s article questioning the Finance Minister’s performance.

Recalling BJP veteran L.K. Advani’s advice to him after his first intervention in Parliament in 1999 over the Bofors case, Mr. Jaitley said: “He made an interesting comment: ‘When you speak in Parliament or outside, speak on issues. Avoid speaking on persons.’ I have breached this rule once in a while, but I try to follow it as far as possible.”

NEW DELHI, SEPTEMBER 28, 2017

PAN card may become invalid without Aadhar

Your PAN card may become invalid without Aadhaar by December 31

PAN card

After making Aadhaar number mandatory for filing of Income Tax returns and compulsory linking it with your Permanent Account Number (PAN) card, there could soon be a deadline.

As per a report in the Hindustan Times, government has “arrived at the tentative cutoff date of December 31”.

“People with existing PAN cards will either have to link them to Aadhaar or show proof of having applied for the 12-digit ID by December 31,” HT quoting a source added.

 Aadhaar may become the only card required to identify a person, replacing Voter ID and PAN, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley recently said in the Lok Sabha.

The unique identification number Aadhaar may become the single identify card in future, he added.

-March 24, 2017, New Delhi

India has largely welcomed demonetisation: Jaitley

India has largely welcomed demonetisation: Jaitley

India has accepted the decision to demonetise higher value currency and are cooperating in transforming the country’s economy and society, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said on Friday.
“People have been cooperating immensely with the demonetisation exercise and the country by-and-large has welcomed the decision,” Jaitley said at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit here.
“I don’t find any social unrest… The queues are by-and-large disciplined,” he said, referring to the lines outside banks and ATMs after the November 8 announcement.
“If you ask the person standing in queue about demonetisation, he or she is likely to say — I’m troubled, but am happy this decision has been taken,” Jaitley said.
India

He said that this patience being shown was guided by the long term benefits that would come from the decision. Jaitley also called the demonetisation “the new normal” confronting black money which was the norm in India for seven decades. “Black money has been a norm in India for seven decades, we want to confront it and create a new normal,” Jaitley said. He said the demonetisation move would ensure that political funding to become “transparent”.  He said “We are at the cusp of change and the battle between the taxman and the people who try to beat the system will continue.”

He said that this patience being shown was guided by the long term benefits that would come from the decision.
Jaitley also called the demonetisation “the new normal” confronting black money which was the norm in India for seven decades.
“Black money has been a norm in India for seven decades, we want to confront it and create a new normal,” Jaitley said.
He said the demonetisation move would ensure that political funding to become “transparent”.
He said “We are at the cusp of change and the battle between the taxman and the people who try to beat the system will continue.”
-02 December 2016 | IANS | New Delhi