Morning briefing: E-governance makes income tax refunds quick and easy

GN Bureau | September 14, 2015



The Income Tax Department will now process and send refunds in a short time of 7-10 days as its latest technology upgrade of electronic and Aadhaar-based ITR verification has begun. The department's Central Processing Centre (CPC) as on September 7 processed 45.18 lakh returns and issued refunds to 22.14 lakh tax payers relating to assessment year 2015-16.

Air India pilots’ union vote in favour of strike
Air India is facing a strike threat as one of its pilot unions has voted in favour of striking work, in a secret ballot conducted by the Indian Commercial Pilots’ Association (ICPA) on whether to declare a strike or not. The ICPA, which consists of 660 members, is protesting a notification issued by Air India, removing pilots from the workman category. The notification, issued last month, bars commanders working with the airline from being a part of any union and effectively takes away their rights to go on strikes.

Decision on quantum of punishment in 2006 Mumbai train blast case
Twelve men convicted for the 2006 serial blasts on Mumbai's local trains are expected to be sentenced by a court today. The prosecution has said it will seek the strictest punishment, the death sentence or a life term, for those charged with murder. Last week, a special Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court convicted 12 of the 13 people arrested in the case. One was acquitted. Seven blasts had ripped through first class compartments on Mumbai's local trains in 11 minutes on the evening of July 11, 2006. 189 people were killed and more than 800 people were injured.

Facebook invites Narendra Modi to next townhall Q&A With Zuckerberg
Facecbook has 1.49 billion users and prime minister Narendra Modi will visit the Facebook headquarters in California on September 27 to hold a town hall interaction with its CEO Mark Zuckerberg, only the second for the Facebook founder with a world leader. The first was with US President Barack Obama in April 2011. India has the largest Facebook users (125 million) outside the US. The prime minister invited questions for the Townhall session. Modi's announcement came after Zuckerberg wrote in his Facebook post: "I'm excited to announce that Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India will be visiting Facebook HQ later this month for a Townhall Q&A." Prime Minister Modi and I will discuss how communities can work together to address social and economic challenges."

Vacuum toilets on trains from today
The Railways will begin the trial run of vacuum toilet from today. The facility has been fitted in the first AC coach of Dibrugarh Rajdhani Express at an estimated cost of about Rs 3 lakh. The vacuum toilets are equipped with the bio-digester system that help prevent corrosion of rail tracks and 80 such toilets will come up is Shatabdi services. The environment-friendly vacuum-based toilets consume much less water than conventional ones despite improved efficiency of the flush, aiding water conservation efforts. Vacuum toilets are currently operational in aircraft.

Quota leader Hardik Patel likely to meet Gujarat CM today
Leader of the quota agitation Hardik Patel is likely to meet Gujarat chief minister Anandiben Patel on Monday. He had postponed his 'reverse Dandi March', scheduled for Sunday, to September 15, saying that he had been invited by a Cabinet minister for a meeting with the state CM on the issue. He has said that if their issues are not resolved, then the march will take place on September 15.

After Meat Ban, Controversy in Rajasthan Over Government Order on Bakr-Id
Days after announcing a meat ban, Rajasthan has ordered schools and colleges to prepare for blood donation camps on September 25, to mark the birth anniversary of Deen Dayal Upadhyaya, an icon of the BJP and its ideological mentor Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. September 25 also happens to be Muslim festival day of Bakr-id, but the Vasundhara Raje government has instructed colleges not to declare a holiday on the day. After strong reactions, the government said Muslim teachers will be allowed to take leave.

Kashmir's half marathon rocked by allegations of sexual harassment
Kashmir's international half marathon was marred by alleged molestation of several girl participants by the miscreants. The went on a rampage, unfurled Pakistani flag, pelted stones and vandalised the venue on the banks of Dal Lake on Sunday. Police have launched a massive crackdown and arrested 12 miscreants so far for molesting and eve-teasing the girl marathoners.

Paytm plans to start India’s first payments bank
Paytm wants to launch the country's first payments bank by the end of this financial year and is counting on its mobile wallet experience to give it a clear advantage over established business houses that will be its main rivals. Paytm was among the 42 applicants who got approval for starting payments banks. Paytm has more than 104 million mobile wallets and expects that to touch 150 million by March 2016.

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