Watch dog mechanism to check irregularities in coal sale

New Delhi, May 17 | Updated: May 18 2006, 05:30am hrs
Watchdog mechanism on coal sale instituted

Coal India Limited (CIL) has instituted a watchdog mechanism to ensure that there are no irregularities in the sale of coal by the National Consumers Federation of India Limited (NCCF), the House was informed.

Coal minister Shibu Soren said NCCF was allocated coal for distributing it to small and tiny consumers who did not have linkage or sponsorship and found it difficult to directly approach the coal companies.

Taxation Bill passed by a voice vote

In a bid to give relief to tax payers, the House passed a Bill to exempt payments made to scientific research organisations and public sector companies among others from tax deduction.

The Bill takes note of major lacunae and bottlenecks.

There are problems of paying taxes but we have to change the culture, Mr Chidambaram said replying to a debate on the taxation laws (amendment) Bill, 2005.

Bill to regularise private courier cos soon

The government would soon bring a Bill amending the Indian Post Office Act, 1898, in Parliament seeking regularisation of private courier companies. Communication and IT minister Dayanidhi Maran said in the the Lok Sabha.

Replying to a question, Mr Maran said since courier companies are not registered, no information regarding their business is available with the department of posts. He also informed the House that DoP was looking at all options to expand the operations of Speed Post in every part of the country.

2,000 Indians working in Afghanistan

Around 2,000 Indian nationals, are working in Afghanistan , the House was informed.

Minister of state for external affairs E Ahamed said Indians engaged in government projects are provided security by governments of Afghanistan and India under the bilateral agreement.

While the Indians working with international agencies and private companies are provided security by their employers, he said.

Check prices of essential commodities, says BJP

Concern was expressed on Wednesday over rising prices of essential commodities like wheat, pulses, vegetables and cooking gas.

Girdhari Lal Bharagava (BJP) said prices of all essential commodities have risen and asked government to take steps to check inflation.

Wheat prices have increased to Rs 10 a kg from Rs 7.50 while the high-graded wheat was costing as high as Rs 15-20 per kg, he said.

Sugar prices have also gone up considerably to Rs 25 a kg from Rs 18 and rice is costing Rs 25 per kg, the member said.

PTI