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Allow CSR in chief minister’s relief funds, Bengal CM writes to PM Modi

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Mamata Banerjee

Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to consider the contribution of business houses to the chief minister’s relief funds (CMRF) as money spent on corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities.

The letter, a copy of which is with PTI, pointed out “one major infirmity in the present CSR framework as provided in the Companies Act 2013”, concerning the interest of the states.

While contributions to the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund (PMNRF) was mentioned as an eligible activity under the CSR in the 2013 Act, the same made to the CMRF was not considered as an activity “eligible for contribution under the CSR”, she wrote in the letter.

“It will indeed be praiseworthy if a contribution to CMRF in the states is also made an eligible activity under CSR. The little contribution would be very helpful to all the states to extend the much-desired assistance and relief to people in need,” the letter read.

Stating that the CMRF is always under financial constraints because of limited donations from the companies, Banerjee has written that if the proposal is accepted by the Centre, the “contributions” will also enable the donors to claim tax breaks.

“You may be aware that West Bengal, like other states of the country, has an established CMRF, similar to the PMNRF. We have been using the fund to provide medical, education and other kinds of relief to the neediest and distressed people in their times of grave financial crisis.

However due to paucity of funds, “we are not being able to fulfill all the requests made for support,” her letter read.

The current regime of the CSR in the country was introduced with the notification of Section 135 of the Companies Act 2013 and the CSR Policy Rules, 2014.

It mandates that from April 1, 2014 every company, private limited or public limited, which either has a net worth of Rs 500 crore or a turnover of Rs 1,000 crore or net profit of Rs 5 crore, has to spend at least 2 percent of its average net profit for the immediately preceding three financial years on corporate social responsibility activities.

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Patidar leader Hardik Patel detained in Ahmedabad

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hardik-patel

Ahmedabad | Patidar leader Hardik Patel on Sunday was detained by the Ahmedabad Crime Branch ahead of his participation in a hunger strike.

Hardik Patel was traveling to the Nikol assembly constituency in Ahmedabad along with other Patidar leaders where he was supposed to hold a 1-day hunger strike demanding reservation for the Patidar community. Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti leader was earlier requested Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani to allow the patidar leader to hold a one day protest. However, the local authorities denied permission to Hardik Patel to observe any kind of protest.

Earlier attacking the BJP government over denial of permission to hold a protest, Patel in a tweet said, “Everyone has the right to agitate in a constitutional way but in Gujarat BJP government prevents us from mobilizing the agitation.We are deprived of our rights by the BJP government but we will not sit quietly, we will fight and win.”


Responding to his arrest, Patel alleged that the state government has deployed more than 200 policemen near his house. “The police arrested more than 130 protesters and 58 agitators were kept under house arrest at his residence just to stop us,” he added.

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Narendra Modi government can’t match the growth rate of UPA-1: Congress

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Congress

New Delhi | The Congress Party on Sunday alleged that the Narendra Modi led NDA government cant match the average growth rate achieved during UPA-1.

Addressing the Press Conference former Finance minister and Congress leader P Chidambaram said, “Congress is a passionate advocate of high growth with equity and social justice.” He further alleged that all three have suffered under the Modi government.”

Criticising the BJP government on the recently released data citing that the Indian economy registered a growth rate of 10.8 percent in 2006-07 under then PM Manmohan singh, the highest since India economy was liberalised in 1991, Chidambaram said that since the advent of BJP-led NDA govt, there has been a determined effort to sow confusion of performance of former PM Dr. Manmohan Singh’s regime. “The back series data is now available. The numbers prove the dictum that truth cannot be suppressed forever and truth has a way of emerging amidst a torrent of lies and distortions,” he added.

Chidambaram stressed that “UPA 1 & UPA 2 delivered the highest decadal growth (8.13% at factor cost) since Independence. It is also a matter of record that during this period 140 million people were lifted out of poverty”. “UPA-1 registered a growth rate of 8.36 while UPA-2 registered 7.68 compared to the growth rate of the NDA government which was 5.58 during the Vajpayee government and 7.33 in the Narendra Modi government,” he added.

Speaking about the achievement of the UPA government, the Congress leader said, “The three best years were 2005-06, 2006-07 & 2007-08. Dr Arvind Subramanian called them the “boom years”. “When the UPA demitted office, economic growth had recovered to 6.39% (at market prices) in 2013-14. The fiscal deficit had been reduced to 4.48% & the current account deficit had been contained at 1.7%,” he added.

Attacking the Modi government for the implementation of economic reforms like Demonetisation and GST, the former finance minister said, “NDA 2 under PM Modi had inherited an economy that was on the upswing. Unfortunately, after the first two years, the govt stumbled & the momentum was lost. The main reasons were demonetisation, flawed implementation of GST and tax terrorism.”

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Gautam Gambhir to join BJP, likely to contest election: Reports

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Gautam Gambhir

New Delhi | Ace Indian Batsman and Delhi Cricketer Gautam Gambhir is set to join Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) and contest the upcoming Delhi election, as reported by Dainik Jagran.

Gambhir, a Delhi native is known for his stand on various political and social issues on Social media. BJP who is currently in opposition of the Delhi assembly wants to utilise the social image of Gambhir in the upcoming election. BJP is eager to include Gautam Gambhir on board for the assembly election and return to the government in Delhi after been sitting in the opposition for more than 20 years.

Gambhir who last played his International Test for India against England in 2016, has scored 4,154 in 58 Tests and 5,238 runs in 147 ODIs. Gambhir is known for his match winning innings during the 2011 ODI world cup final against Sri Lanka where he scored 97 and against Pakistan during the 2007 T20 worldcup final where he scored 75 valuable runs. Gambhir also helped IPL Side Kolkata Knight Riders to win two tittles in 2012 and 2014.

If Gambhir joins BJP he will follow the steps of former cricketer Mohammed Azharuddin who was a member of Parliament from Congress Party in 2009 and Navjot Singh Sindhu who is currently a minister in Pubjab cabinet.

 

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