March 6, 2021 3:20:02 am
The Railway Minister, Kedar Pandey, announced a series of concessions to railway passengers’ fare from 10 per cent to 5 per cent. He was replying to a general discussion on the railway budget in the two Houses of Parliament. Pandey also said that there would be no surcharge on rail travel up to 200 km. In his budget speech, he had proposed a surcharge of 10 per cent onys rail journies of more than 150 km. The surcharge on travel beyond 200 km has been reduced to 5 per cent. He said the more than 2,400 casual labour would be made permanent in the Railways over the next few months. The minister exempted medicines from the 15 per cent surcharge announced in the budget. In addition, medicines booked as parcels, as also betel leaves, will attract a reduced levy of 5 per cent.
Govt Firm On Quotas
The home minister Giani Zail Singh said that he was prepared to sit with the Opposition party members to find ways and means of resolving the Gujarat crisis. He also said that the Lok Sabha should also condemn those involved in the anti-reservation agitation. The government was firm on reservations, he said, and told the House that a committee has been constituted to look into the ways of implementing them.
Open To Third World
West Germany is opposed to any fall-back on protectionism by the industrialised countries since it will hurt developing countries like India. This was stated by the visiting West German Foreign Minister Dietrich. He said that not only the Western industrialised countries but also the communist industrialised countries should open their markets to products of the Third World.
The Indian and Eastern Newspaper Society has urged Finance Minister R Venkataraman to withdraw the proposed 15 per cent duty on imported newsprint.
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