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New labour policy to make Kerala employee-friendly



Thiruvananthapuram: The CPI(M)-led LDF government in Kerala is all set to implement its new labour policy with the state cabinet according sanction for it today.

A cabinet meeting, chaired by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, gave the nod to the Kerala State Labour Policy, which envisages making the state more employee-friendly and ensuring social security and decent wages to all workers.

According to an official release, the new policy advocates stringent action against the “unhealthy practices” that exist in the employment sector.

Strengthening of employer-employee relationship to avoid labour disputes, formation of a labour bank to protect the job and interests of domestic labourers are among the major recommendations in the new policy.

The policy also wants to discourage flash strikes in the state and end the practice of extracting wages without doing any work.

The state labour department’s enforcement wing would intervene to improve the service conditions, wages and other benefits of employees working in shops and other commercial establishments, it said.

Advocating women-friendly measures, the policy also envisages that women employees get all benefits as per law, the release added.


SC lawyer files writ petition, demands CBI probe against Thoothukudi Collector,SP

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New Delhi: Supreme Court lawyer G.S Mani on Thursday filed a writ petition in the Apex Court demanding seeking registration of an FIR and investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) against Thoothukudi Collector, Superintendent of Police and other police officials.

On Tuesday, the police fired at the protest rally demanding the closure of the Sterlite Copper’s smelting unit in Thoothukudi. Around 13 people died in the firing while 60 persons, including police, suffered injuries in stone pelting and have been admitted to the Government Medical College Hospital in Thoothukudi.

In Chennai, The Tamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi (TVK) held a protest in the afternoon today, condemning the police firing during protests in Thoothukudi that lead to the death of 13 people.

Collector Sandeep Nanduri informed that 65 people have been arrested for indulging in violence and 68 have been arrested for causing damage to public property during the protests.

“65 people have been arrested and remanded for indulging in violence during SterliteProtests in Thoothukudi. Another 68 people have been arrested & will be produced in front of the magistrate for causing damage to public property & indulging in violence,” said Nanduri.


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ISA will add a new chapter in Indo-Netherlands bilateral relations: PM Modi

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday expressed his happiness over Netherlands joining the International Solar Alliance (ISA) saying that it will add a new chapter in the Indo-Netherlands bilateral relations.

International Solar Alliance is a dedicated platform for cooperation among solar resource-rich countries where the global community, including bilateral and multilateral organizations, corporate, industry, and other stakeholders, can make a positive contribution to assist and help achieve the common goals of increasing the use of solar energy in meeting energy needs of prospective ISA member countries in a safe, convenient, affordable, equitable and sustainable manner.

“India and Netherlands have shared close relations in the United Nations Security Council and also with respect to multilateral exports. The ISA will add a new chapter” Prime Minister Modi added.

He further informed that both India and Netherlands have conducted three bilateral summits starting from 2015, when Prime Minister Rutt visited India for the first time followed by Prime Minister Modi’s visit to The Netherlands in 2017, and now in 2018.

Prime Minister Modi said “We reviewed the progress in our bilateral relations, shared our view on both regional and global developments and further met the top CEO’s of both countries.”

The Netherlands has advanced technology for energy production and “has gained immense experience in the field of energy and the entire world must be benefited by them”, he added.

“India’s is the fifth highest foreign direct investor in the Netherlands is moving towards to rise to the third highest position with respect to the same” and continued saying that several Dutch companies have been operating in India since years, Prime Minister said.

Prime Minister Modi said “The Netherlands has proven to be an attractive destination for the Indian investors as he reiterated the relevance of agro-processing sectors in the process of developing the Indian economy “which will help to double the farmers’ income.”

He said, “During Indian World Tour, The Netherlands participated as a ‘focused country’. I further expect it to participate in a similar tour in 2019”.
Prime Minister Modi further informed that the first-ever Indo-Dutch Excellence Center has been built in Varanasi to help to create advanced technologies for producing vegetables.

The Netherlands will be participating as a partner country in the India Tech Summit 2019, he informed.

Earlier today Prime Minister Narendra Modi along with his Dutch counterpart Mark Rutte on Thursday discussed various issues, including strengthening Indo-Netherlands cooperation in technology and innovation in the Chief Executive Officers (CEO) Roundtable meeting held at the Hyderabad House in Delhi.

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Maharashtra CM Fadnavis pitch for bringing petrol, diesel under GST




Mumbai: Amid a nationwide outrage over rising fuel prices, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis today pitched for bringing petrol and diesel under the purview of GST, saying it would ensure reduction of rates.

“A task force is already working on reducing the fuel prices. If it (petrol and diesel) can be brought under GST, rates will come down,” he told reporters here.

He said Maharashtra has already given its consent for bringing petrol and diesel under the purview of GST which was rolled out on July 1 last year but “other states have not given their consent yet.”

Fadnavis’ comment came amidst rising prices of petrol and diesel over which the opposition has been targeting the Narendra Modi government.

Talks are going on with finance ministers of all states, Fadnavis said, adding, “Once petrol and diesel are brought under the ambit of GST, its threshold will change, because right now, taxes upon taxes are levied which increases rates. GST will ensure a single tax.”

Noting that petrol and diesel prices are defined by international crude oil rates, the chief minister said the GST Council will also have to look into aspects like revenue losses before taking a decision.

Petrol costs Rs 77.47 a litre in Delhi and diesel Rs 68.53.

Petrol and diesel prices were raised for the 11th day in succession today as the state-owned oil firms gradually passed on to the consumer the increased cost of international oil that had accumulated since a 19-day freeze was imposed just before Karnataka elections.

Since the time the hiatus ended on May 14, rates have gone up by Rs 2.84 a litre in case of petrol and Rs 2.60 in diesel.

The Centre had in June last year junked the 15-year old practice of revising rates every fortnight and introduced daily revisions.

The central government levies Rs 19.48 excise duty on a litre of petrol and Rs 15.33 on diesel. State sales tax or VAT varies from state to state. Unlike excise duty, VAT is ad valorem and results in higher revenues for the state when rates move up.

Meanwhile, praising Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Fadnavis said the Centre has stood behind his state government “like Himalayas” and all stalled projects were given clearance under Modi’s rule.

“Unprecedented funds have been given by the Centre to mitigate drought problems, for irrigation purposes, to build roads. The Centre has given Maharashtra in last four years what was not given in the last 20 years,” he claimed.

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