Pranab Mukherjee says UPA is not falling apart

External Affairs Minister Pranab MukherjeeNew Delhi, Apr

Government announces service tax relief for SEZ units

SEZIn a major relief to firms the government has announced to extend tax relief to companies who are providing services from the tax-free export zones. Developers are also entitled to avail the benefits of tax exemptions under the new norms. However, tax benefits would be extended only for permitted activities within SEZs.

A statement by commerce ministry said that government has also decided to exempt the zones from all indirect taxes for authorized operations. The Empowered Group of Ministers has already endorsed the viewpoint of commerce ministry in a meeting held on August 2008 chaired by External Affairs Minister and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee.

Government clears 29 FDI proposals

Foreign Direct InvestmentThe Union Government on Wednesday approved the recommendations of the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearing 29 FDI proposals worth Rs 6.16 billion. The companies, whose FDI proposals have been cleared, include AAPC Singapore, ABG Bulk Handling Poltrona Frau and some media and entertainment houses.

Diplomatic pressure forced Pak to speak out truth: Sonia

United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia GandhiSonepat (Haryana), Mar 1 : The United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi said that diplomatic pressure exerted on Islamabad made Pakistan to divulge the truth and admit that the Mumbai terror attacks were partly planned on its soil.

"Pakistan was forced to speak out the truth due to the diplomatic pressure exerted by India," said Sonia Gandhi while addressing a public meeting here.

Sonia, however, said that some elements were trying to create obstacles in country's progress from time to time.

Sonia Gandhi lays foundation stone of women’s medical college in Haryana

United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi Sonepat (Haryana), Mar 1 : United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi on Sunday laid the foundation stone of a women's medical college in the Bhagat Phool Singh University campus in Khanpur Kalan, Haryana.

She also unveiled a statue of Bhagat Phool Singh on the occasion.

A large number of armed police and security personnel were deployed for the visit.

Duty magistrates monitored the law and order situation.

Govt. relaxes fiscal gap target of states to 3.5 percent

Govt. relaxes fiscal gap target of states to 3.5 percentKeeping in mind the global slowdown, the government on Thursday decided to relax the fiscal gap target of states to 3.5 percent.

Talking to reporters Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram said, "In view of the slowdown and pressure on resources, this gap was first relaxed to 3.5 percent for the present year, 2008-2009. But the slowdown is likely to continue next year. So, the gap has been relaxed to 3.5 percent also for 2009-10."