Inspired by her mother’s own return to learning at the age of 48, Lorraine Dalton enrolled in the Sydney Adult Education Centre to make a better future for her son. Ms. Dalton, a second-generation adult learner, completed Grade 10 nearly a decade ago, but went back to school and this year, earned her high school diploma. “It’s hard to believe that I am graduating. I am so glad that I made that first step to a better future for my son and me,” said Ms. Dalton. “My son and my mother are my number one supporters. My family is very proud of what I have accomplished in such a short period of time.” This year, more than 500 adult learners across the province will receive their high school graduation diploma through support from the Nova Scotia School for Adult Learning. Today, June 27, Ms. Dalton is one of 32 students graduating in Sydney. The Nova Scotia School for Adult Learning co-ordinates a range of education programs for adults who want to improve their reading and math skills, or complete their high school diploma. This year marks the school’s fifth anniversary and the graduation of about 2,000 adult Nova Scotians with a high school diploma. “There have been more than 20,000 enrollments in the Nova Scotia School for Adult Learning in five years. It meets a significant need in our province for adults to improve their education, and ultimately, their job skills,” said Education Minister Karen Casey. “I congratulate the graduates for taking steps toward a brighter future for themselves and their families.” The Nova Scotia School for Adult Learning works in partnership with Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC), regional school boards, Université Sainte-Anne, and community-based learning organizations to offer programs at more than 170 sites across the province. The high school graduation diploma for adults was introduced in 2001. “Over the past 10 years, Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board has been very proud to support adult learners in their life-long learning path through the adult high school program,” said Rick Simm, principal of Sydney Adult Education Centre. “To date, our board has seen 505 adults complete their credits and receive their high school diploma. It is so rewarding to see the accomplishments that they have achieved for themselves, their future and for their families.” The Nova Scotia School for Adult Learning is part of the provincial government’s Skills Nova Scotia initiative that involves job skills training, workplace learning, and basic literacy skills upgrading.
The Cape Breton Regional Municipality (CBRM) has issued a request for proposals to study potential future uses of the Tar Ponds and Coke Ovens. A $400-million plan to clean up the two sites is awaiting final approvals from the federal and provincial governments following an exhaustive public environmental review. “Over the next eight years, we will rehabilitate 100 hectares in the middle of Sydney,” said Frank Potter, acting CEO of the Sydney Tar Ponds Agency. “We think this study is a great opportunity for the community to focus on how those lands should be used.” The Sydney Tar Ponds Agency and Public Works and Government Services Canada will contribute $100,000 to the $200,000 CBRM study. CBRM, other federal landholders, and Nova Scotia Lands, a provincial real estate holding agency, are also expected to contribute to the cost. Successful cleanups of similar sites in other communities have been linked to early development of future use plans. The joint environmental review panel that reviewed the Tar Ponds Agency’s cleanup plan made several recommendations about future site use. It urged the municipality and the agency to develop a future use plan that incorporates the municipality’s proposal for the development of a corridor linking the Port of Sydney and the airport, known as the port-to-port plan. The panel said the future use plan should also reflect the public’s desire for active living spaces on the two sites, including the planting of native trees and shrubs. It urged the agency to set aside money to share the future cost of maintaining walking trails and open spaces. A draft report is due no later than six months after the contract is awarded, with the final report due a month later.
Based on new evidence that pregnant women are at increased risk of being hospitalized because of influenza, this year the province is offering free vaccine to pregnant women. Flu vaccine is safe during pregnancy, and while breastfeeding. “Getting immunized is a good example of what we as individuals can do to create healthier communities,” said Health Promotion and Protection Minister Barry Barnet. “When you get a flu shot, you protect not only your own health, but the health of the people around you.” Because health-care providers are often in frequent contact with those at risk of contracting the flu, it is important for them to get flu shots as well. Only about 50 per cent of health-care workers get flu shots. “It’s important that health-care workers get immunized so that we prevent the spread of flu to our patients,” said Dr. Rhonda Church, past-president of Doctors Nova Scotia. “We need to stay healthy so that we can continue to provide care to those who depend on us.” Many people mistake the flu for other respiratory or stomach illnesses. Flu symptoms usually include a sudden high fever, headache, general aches and pains, fatigue and weakness, a runny, stuffy nose, sneezing and sore throat. Proper hygiene, such as hand-washing and covering your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing, are also important to prevent the spread of influenza and many other infections. People with flu symptoms should stay home and minimize close contact with others. The typical flu season in Nova Scotia runs from November to April, sending more than 20,000 people to doctors. About 2,500 people are admitted to hospital during a normal flu season. For more information on the flu, or to find out where flu vaccine clinics are across the province, visit www.gov.ns.ca/hpp . pregnant women people older than 65 people living with, or caring for, those older than 65 adults and children with chronic heart and lung problems and other chronic diseases infants age six months to 23 months all health-care workers and students in health-care education programs police officers and firefighters. Public health officials are reminding Nova Scotians that immunization is our best defence to protect people, young and old, from symptoms of the flu. “Every year, influenza creates a burden on our population, our workplaces, and on our health-care system,” said Dr. Rob Strang, chief public health officer. “But much of the burden can be prevented. Immunization is a simple, safe and effective way to save lives and prevent serious illness this flu season.” The Department of Health Promotion and Protection is providing free vaccine at doctors’ offices and community clinics across the province for the following groups:
Walking throughout Nova Scotia on the Trans Canada Trail just got easier. Premier Rodney MacDonald, Trans Canada Trail National chair Valerie Pringle, Trans Canada Trail president and CEO Deborah Apps and Terry Norman, president of the Nova Scotia Trails Federation, today, Oct. 21, signed a memorandum of understanding to expand the trail system in Nova Scotia to make it the province most connected by trails. The memorandum of understanding establishes a working relationship to complete the trail in Nova Scotia. It also encourages community support and assists community volunteers in the development of trails. Trans Canada Trail National has also agreed to continue its national trail construction funding program, conduct national fundraising programs and support the planning and building of pavilions at visible locations in the province. “The Trans Canada Trail is a wonderful showcase for the natural beauty of our great country,” said Premier MacDonald. “The trail will also provide Nova Scotians with more opportunities for physical activities like, walking, running and biking.” “Trans Canada Trail is currently developing the world’s longest recreational trail, connecting hundreds of Canadian communities said Ms. Pringle. “The trail, when completed, will run from the Atlantic to the Pacific to the Arctic oceans, through every province and territory, linking more than 33 million Canadians. “It will showcase Canada at its best and trails in Nova Scotia will make up an important part of it.” “The signing of the memorandum of understanding is a milestone that shows the province understands the importance of trails and trail building for the communities and people of Nova Scotia,” said Ms. Apps. The province will establish an intergovernmental committee of representatives from departments that are responsible for building trails. The committee will work closely with the Nova Scotia Trails Federation to investigate ways to support the sustainable management of the Trans Canada Trail in Nova Scotia. “Nova Scotia Trails appreciates the strong financial and public policy support that we have received from the government of Nova Scotia over the past 12 years,” said Mr. Norman. “We are also thankful for the financial, administrative and moral support that we have received from Trans Canada Trail National. “The memorandum of understanding we are signing is tangible evidence of the strength of our partnership.”
Premier Rodney MacDonald is encouraging Nova Scotians to support Holocaust Remembrance Day, Tuesday, Jan. 27. It has been over 60 years since the Holocaust. The tragedy saw the lives of six million innocent Jewish men, women and children killed at the hands of the Nazis. “The Holocaust was a brutal genocide that must never be allowed to fade from memory,” said Premier MacDonald. “The murder of millions of people for simply being Jewish was an horrific crime against humanity. It was an incomprehensible event and for that very reason, should never be forgotten.” Canada was instrumental in urging fellow United Nations countries to vote in favour of a resolution to officially mark a day of Holocaust remembrance. Information on Holocaust Remembrance Day events are available by contacting the Atlantic Jewish Council at 902-422-7491, ext 226.
The Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation (NSLC) had a 6.85 per cent increase in net income compared with the same period last year in third-quarter results released today, March 4. The NSLC recorded net income of $57.2 million on net sales of $147.3 million for the period of Sept. 29, 2008 to Dec. 28, 2008, compared with $53.6 million on net sales of $140.4 million net income for the same period last year. A detailed news release on the third-quarter results can be found by following the News Releases link on the NSLC website at www.thenslc.com -30-
Le ministère de la Promotion et de la Protection de la santé, conjointement avec l’Agence de la santé publique du Canada, a confirmé quatre cas de grippe porcine à Windsor, dans le comté de Hants. « Il n’y a aucune raison pour la communauté de Windsor ou pour les Néo-Écossais de trop s’inquiéter, » a dit le Dr Robert Strang, médecin-hygiéniste en chef de la province. « Les personnes touchées par cette maladie ont démontré des symptômes légers et se rétablissent. Personne, jusqu’à présent, n’a été hospitalisé en raison de cette maladie. Toutefois, nous demeurons vigilants et nous continuons notre surveillance dans la région de Windsor et à l’échelle de la province. » Comme les autres régions du Canada, la Nouvelle-Écosse a été mise au courant de ce problème de santé potentiel la semaine dernière. Le ministère de la Promotion et de la Protection de la santé a immédiatement communiqué avec le réseau de professionnels de la santé dans les régies de la province afin de s’assurer qu’ils étaient tous au courant et prêts à réagir rapidement. « La Nouvelle-Écosse est en bonne position pour prendre des mesures concernant cette situation, » a dit Pat Dunn, ministre de la Promotion et de la Protection de la santé. « Nous avons un système de santé publique solide dans cette province, doté de professionnels hautement qualifiés et bienveillants. J’ai entièrement confiance en leur capacité de gérer toute question de santé publique qui pourrait être soulevée. » Le ministère poursuivra ses efforts de surveillance à l’échelle de la province à l’aide des pratiques et protocoles établis en matière de santé publique. Tout cas supplémentaire identifié sera aussi examiné en profondeur. « Nous avons pris toutes les mesures nécessaires pour se préparer en vue de toute situation, » a dit le Dr Strang. « Nous avons réagi rapidement, et le fait que nous ayons identifié ces cas indique que nos efforts supplémentaires sont efficaces. » Il est recommandé que toute personne qui prévoit voyager au Mexique reçoive le vaccin anti-grippal. La prévention est toujours la meilleure approche pour prévenir les maladies. On recommande aux Néo-Écossais de bien se laver les mains souvent, de se couvrir la bouche lorsqu’ils toussent et de rester à l’écart des endroits publics lorsqu’ils sont malades.
Il n’y a pas eu de nouveaux cas confirmés de grippe H1N1 (grippe porcine chez l’être humain) dans la province aujourd’hui, 15 mai. À cause de la diminution du nombre d’appels au numéro sans frais 1-888-451-4222 de la ligne d’information sur le virus H1N1, il y a maintenant un message enregistré qui sera mis à jour à mesure qu’il y aura du nouveau. Les mesures de prévention constituent la meilleure façon de rester en bonne santé. Il faut donc se laver les mains souvent, se couvrir la bouche avec la manche pour tousser ou éternuer et désinfecter souvent les surfaces et articles couramment utilisés tels que les poignées de porte et les comptoirs. Si une personne présente des symptômes de la grippe, elle doit rester à la maison et minimiser le plus possible le contact avec les membres de sa famille. Si les symptômes s’aggravent, il faut consulter un médecin ou visiter une clinique sans rendez-vous. Il est important que les Néo-Écossais comprennent qu’il est sécuritaire de se rendre au travail et à l’école, de participer aux activités scolaires et de faire des sorties sociales s’ils ne présentent pas de symptômes de la grippe. Le nombre total de cas signalés en Nouvelle-Écosse depuis le début de l’épidémie, le 26 avril, est maintenant de 66. Tous les cas sont bénins et les personnes atteintes se sont rétablies ou sont en cours de rétablissement. Pour obtenir plus d’information sur le virus H1N1 (grippe porcine chez l’être humain), consultez le www.gov.ns.ca. -30-
The Amherst Access Nova Scotia Office, Land Registration Office and Geomatics Centre are closed until further notice because of a power outage. Road tests will be conducted as scheduled. Some services are available online at www.gov.ns.ca/snsmr/access/ . -30-
The province introduced legislation today, May 8, to formalize the planned merger of the Nova Scotia Agricultural College and Dalhousie University. “The legislation will enable Dalhousie University to continue NSAC’s mission as a regional, national and international leader in agriculture research, education and innovation,” said John MacDonell, Minister of Agriculture. “Government and Dalhousie will be developing and promoting Nova Scotia’s agriculture and agri-food industries from the Bible Hill campus for many years to come.” The legislation gives authority for a formal merger agreement to be signed later in the spring, consistent with the terms of an agreement in principle announced on March 23. The target date for the merger has been extended from July 1 to Sept. 1 to allow sufficient time to finalize details of the formal agreement and engage the campus in transition preparations. NSAC faculty and staff will officially become employees of Dalhousie on Sept. 1. “The legislation is an important step in NSAC’s formal transition to Dalhousie” said Tom Traves, president of Dalhousie University. “As planned, on Sept. 1 students will enter the merged institution as Dalhousie students with continued access to the programs delivered by NSAC’s current faculty and staff.” The legislation makes NSAC faculty and staff employees of Dalhousie under the terms of their existing collective agreements. They will remain eligible for the province’s pension plan. Dalhousie will be given legal access to NSAC information, contracts and assets needed to ensure university operations continue uninterrupted. The formal agreement, enabled through the legislation, addresses details of the merger such as the transfer of land, buildings and equipment that support the ongoing delivery of academic programs and research. The agreement will be made public before the effective date of the merger. Nova Scotia Agricultural College has an operating budget of $33.5 million. Dalhousie will receive the government funding provided to NSAC in the past, primarily through the Department of Agriculture, which was $17.1 million last year. It will also receive $6.8 million in funding for its educational programs through the university memorandum of understanding with the Department of Labour and Advanced Education, as well as revenues from other sources, such as tuition and fees. The Department of Agriculture will provide a one-time allocation of $7.5 million over three years for transition costs such as IT conversion and urgent facility renewal projects. The Nova Scotia Agricultural College, founded in 1905, will become Dalhousie’s Faculty of Agriculture under the proposed name of the Dalhousie Agricultural Campus, or Dal-AC. The institution employs about 300 faculty and staff and has enrolment of about 1,000 students.
Les jeunes ont démontré qu’ils comprennent bien que les enfants ont le droit d’être protégés et qu’ils peuvent aider les autres, en participant à un concours d’affiches dans le cadre de la Journée nationale de l’enfant. Les élèves de la maternelle à la 7e année ont créé des affiches illustrant leur interprétation du thème de la Journée nationale des enfants cette année, « Par et pour les enfants ». Le Bureau de l’ombudsman a parrainé le concours et a reçu 824 soumissions. Un élève de chaque niveau scolaire a été choisi comme gagnant. « La réaction au concours a été incroyable. Chaque personne a pris le temps de bien penser à ses œuvres, a dit Dwight Bishop, ombudsman de la Nouvelle-Écosse. Il est évident que ces jeunes comprennent bien que tous les enfants ont le droit d’être protégés contre tout préjudice et qu’ils peuvent aider d’autres enfants. Je félicite tout le monde pour leurs efforts considérables. » La Convention des Nations Unies relative aux droits de l’enfant a été adoptée par l’Assemblée générale de l’ONU le 20 novembre 1989. Elle explique les droits fondamentaux auxquels ont droit les enfants de moins de 18 ans. Le Canada a ratifié la Convention en 1991 et célèbre la Journée nationale de l’enfant depuis 1993. Un comité de juges, formé de représentants du Bureau de l’ombudsman et des étudiants du programme de soins aux enfants et aux jeunes du campus de Truro du NSCC, a choisi les gagnants selon le mérite artistique, la créativité et l’interprétation et la communication du thème. En plus des gagnants dans chaque niveau scolaire, un prix a été décerné pour la meilleure participation d’une classe. Pour obtenir plus d’information et voir les affiches gagnantes, consultez le www.gov.ns.ca/ombu (en anglais seulement).
Public libraries across Nova Scotia are inviting kids, teens and families to join them this summer for a series of fun and interactive events guaranteed to keep everyone entertained and happy. “Summer is our busiest time of year. When the kids are out of school they love coming to the library,” said Kristel Fleuren-Hunter, children services librarian with the Pictou-Antigonish Regional Library. “We organize a whole host of programs and activities that are fun and engaging, plus they get to see all their friends and make some new ones.” Some of the things happening this summer include, Lego robotics, computer gaming, family fort nights, storytime in the park, musical zoo, wild science, storytime with a farmer, Minecraft, Camp Overdue (for teens), art programs, nature hunts, reptiles, musicians, crafts, games, colouring, puppet shows, book clubs and summer challenges. There will be contests and prizes, including books and bikes donated by the Adopt a Library Program, and museum passes donated by the Nova Scotia Museum. Studies show students who read over the summer do better in school. Nova Scotia’s public libraries also offer a variety of reading programs to help children explore their interests and foster a love of reading. One club being offered at many libraries is the TD Summer Reading Club, a joint initiative with Library and Archives Canada. This year’s theme is, Wild, and in addition to reading, libraries will be challenging kids to think about nature and get active with programs, contests and activities that engage. “Our public libraries do a wonderful job keeping our kids active and engaged, while also challenging them to explore their interests and imaginations,” said Tony Ince, Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage. This year the TD Summer Reading Club is organizing a nationwide, Get Your Summer Read On Day, launch on June 25, with the Halifax Central Library acting as the national headquarters for the English event, and featuring special programming and activities for kids and families. In 2015, more than 13,800 children and teens registered in library summer reading clubs and read over 112,000 books. More than 43,000 participated in about 1,500 summer programs and activities in public libraries across the province last summer. Summer Reading Program kick-off parties are being planned for public libraries across the province at the end of June and the program runs until the end of August. More information about summer programs and reading club activities are available at local public libraries. A map of Nova Scotia public libraries and links to each region can be found at library.novascotia.ca/map.
Volunteer first responder organizations will be able to purchase necessary safety equipment with help from the Emergency Services Provider Fund. Municipal Affairs Minister Derek Mombourquette announced more than $500,000 in grants today, Oct. 30, for 38 organizations throughout the province. “These organizations are supported by volunteers, who put in countless hours training for and responding to emergencies,” said Mr. Mombourquette. “The Emergency Services Provider Fund enhances the safety of those who give so selflessly to protect our communities.” The announcement was made at the Mira Road Volunteer Fire Department in Sydney, which was awarded $20,000 this year to purchase personal protective equipment and self-contained breathing apparatus. “The Emergency Services Provider Fund grant helps our volunteers stay as safe as possible while helping others in emergency situations,” said Brent Boyle, chief of the Mira Road Volunteer Fire Department. Eligible volunteer fire departments, hazardous materials teams and ground search and rescue organizations can apply for up to 75 per cent of new safety equipment costs, to a maximum of $20,000. For a complete list of 2017-18 grants, visit https://novascotia.ca/dma/funding/community/emergency-services-provider-fund.asp
New Delhi: With a market share of 28.1 per cent in the first quarter of 2019, HP Inc maintained its leadership position in the Indian personal computing (PC) market, which shrunk for the third straight quarter, the International Data Corporation (IDC) said on Thursday. The market witnessed a year-on-year (YoY) drop of 8.3 per cent with shipments reaching 2.15 million units in the first quarter of 2019, said the report. Despite maintaining its leadership position in the market, HP Inc saw a 9.7 per cent YoY decline, mainly due to consumer segment that shrunk 21.3 per cent over the first quarter of last year. Also Read – SC declines Oil Min request to stay sharing of documents Dell Inc retained the second position with a 25.9 per cent market share with a YoY growth of 2.2 per cent and a quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) growth of 26.7 per cent. Lenovo remained at third position with a market share of 25.2 per cent in Q1 of 2019 in India traditional PC market, observing a 6.2 per cent YoY growth and a 29.2 per cent sequential growth. The India PC market remained weak outside big commercial deals due to weak consumer demand, high inventory from previous quarters and supply issues for Intel chips, IDC said. Also Read – World suffering ‘synchronized slowdown’, says new IMF chief The notebook category contributing 61.4 per cent of the India PC market shipments witnessed a 9.8 per cent YoY decline. Within notebooks, ultra-slim category, with a 25.3 per cent share of the market, grew 86.5 per cent. “Spending towards ultra-slim notebooks is increasing due to factors like improved mobility due to thinness of the product and enhanced aesthetics,” Bharath Shenoy, Market Analyst, PCs, IDC India, said in a statement.
New Delhi: Bhaskar Choudhary, the managing director of Delhi-based Pathway Education Services who was arrested on Saturday for rigging the 2019 BITS, Pilani online entrance test, may also be involved in rigging exams like the NEET UG, NEET PG, and even the JEE Advanced, through their remote desktop technology.According to the FIR registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation on May 22, the complainant in the case had recorded a conversation with one of Choudhary’s accomplices in Ahmedabad, revealing details of the exam manipulation nexus. Also Read – Cylinder blast kills mother and daughter in Karawal NagarIn the covertly recorded conversation, Choudhary’s accomplice and owner of Disha Education in Ahmedabad, Ketan Barot, had allegedly said that their “real work” lies in rigging exams like NEET UG, NEET PG, and even the JEE Advanced. Barot also mentioned that they charge somewhere between Rs 80-90 lakh per applicant for rigging the NEET PG and up to Rs 2- 2.5 crore per applicant for helping them clear the JEE Advanced test. During the conversation, Barot also allegedly boasted to the complainant, saying that manipulating entrance examinations for these institutes “is a small matter” for them and that their “real work” lies in rigging exams like NEET UG, NEET PG, and JEE Also Read – Two persons arrested for killing manager of Muthoot FinanceAdvanced. Further, Barot also mentions how easy it is for them to manipulate the BITS, Pilani online entrance test also known as the BITSAT. He allegedly said that exam centre owners in Ahmedabad and Vadodara were also in on the scheme and that they had cyber experts who had designed a way to help applicants through a remote desktop technology. Barot is also heard explaining that while the applicant appears for the exam at the centre, “expert scholars” would access their computers from a remote location and then answer on behalf of them. He had also allegedly told the complainant that they would be able to tell him the exact score of his daughter if he chose to pay for the service, for which he had demanded Rs 10 lakh. The CBI on Saturday arrested six key members, part of the organised operation and carried out searches in Mumbai, Delhi, Ahmedabad, and Vadodara, seizing Rs 33 lakh in cash, several blank signed cheques, and other incriminating documents.
Bangkok: The leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations on Saturday gathered in Bangkok for a summit to discuss economic matters affecting the region amid the ongoing trade tensions between the US and China, as well as to broach an array of policies promoting a path toward greater sustainability. The Prime Ministers and Presidents of the 10-nation bloc – which was founded in 1967 and is currently made up of Brunei, Cambodia, the Philippines, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam – were set to inaugurate later in the day the 34th bi-annual summit’s plenary session, which is scheduled to end on Sunday. Also Read – Maruti cuts production for 8th straight month in Sep The Prime Minister of Thailand, Prayut Chan-ocha – whose country currently chairs the bloc, 10 years after its last chairmanship – had warned on the eve of the gathering of ASEAN leaders that the US-China trade war was creating uncertainty in the global economy, reported Efe news. “We have to alleviate this tension and create a greater balance,” said the head of the Thai government, who took power following a military coup in 2014 and was recently ratified as PM after a controversial general election in March. Also Read – Ensure strict implementation on ban of import of e-cigarettes: revenue to Customs Under the theme of “Advancing Partnership for Sustainability”, the bloc seeks to boost environmental measures as several countries in the region such as Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia are moving toward banning imports of non-recyclable waste. “At a time our region is facing challenges and uncertainty, sustainability is a solution with the aim of creating the best conditions for regional stability and sustained economic growth,” said Thai Foreign Affairs Minister Don Pramudwinai during the opening speech of the ministerial meeting. The bloc’s Foreign Affairs and Finance Ministers were also set to meet on Saturday in an attempt to reach a consensus on advancing toward the so-called Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership with ASEAN’s external partners. The RCEP is a proposed multilateral free trade deal that would make it the world’s largest economic bloc due to the inclusion of Asian giants China, Japan, India and South Korea – the continent’s four leading economies, in that order – as well as Australia and New Zealand. It would cover a territory with a combined population of 3.4 billion people – around 40 per cent of the world’s inhabitants – and represent a similar proportion of the global economy. The agreement’s details are expected to be hammered out before the end of 2019. “In this summit, we aim to conclude it as a single stance of ASEAN that we want to complete the negotiation of RCEP by the end of this year,” Auramon Supthaweethum, Director-General of the Thai Department of Trade Negotiations, had said on the summit’s eve. The President of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, had said before departing Manila that he would include in the agenda the territorial disputes between China and his country over sovereignty in the South China Sea, an issue that also affects other ASEAN members like Vietnam, Malaysia and Brunei. Duterte has in the past repeatedly said that even though the countries are friends, the Asian giant shouldn’t claim “an entire ocean” for itself and has warned of the dangers this stance could imply. “I love China, but it behooves us to ask: is it right for a country to claim the whole ocean?” he rhetorically asked during a speech in Tokyo at the end of May. In early June, a collision between a fishing boat from the Philippines and a Chinese vessel sparked outrage among Filipino nationalist groups, despite the close ties between Manila and Beijing, who have both downplayed the incident’s importance. Around 30 per cent of the world’s maritime trade passes through the South China Sea, home to thousands of islets and atolls scattered over an area that contains important fisheries and potential oil and gas deposits.
Kolkata: Police officials of and below the rank of Deputy Superintendents/Assistant Commissioners of police will now be entitled to get 52 days extra salary apart from their entitled yearly salary. The step is in recognition of their services even on weekly off days and holidays. Till date, these officials got 30 days extra pay. The state Home and Hill Affairs department brought out a notification regarding this on Friday, stating that the Governor has approved “proposal of payment in one lump of cash compensation equivalent to 52 days pay and DA to police officers or personnel of or below the rank of Deputy Superintendents/Assistant Commissioners of police, for deprivation of weekly off days and gazetted holidays, for every completed year ending on June 30 every year.” Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had announced this at the state Assembly on Wednesday. The notification will come into effect on an immediate basis. MPOST
New Delhi: As the GST completes two years in operation, India Inc Sunday said it is time for the tax reform to leapfrog to its second phase by bringing electricity, oil & gas, real estate and alcohol under its ambit and converging the rate structure into 2-3 slabs. “GST 2.0 will take the Indian economy to the next growth level,” CII President Vikram Kirloskar said. Batting for a single registration process pan-India, CII said building on the milestones of the past two years, it is time to implement GST 2.0. Also Read – Maruti cuts production for 8th straight month in Sep”While we acknowledge that the teething troubles related to GST implementation may have been resolved, we now need to move forward to achieve the underlying objective of GST framework of creating a simplified indirect taxation system,” Ficci President Sandip Somany said. The industry body claimed it is generally observed that when members of the Advance Ruling Authority are officers of state tax and central tax departments, they tend to be a revenue-bias while interpreting the provisions of the GST law and pronouncing a ruling. Also Read – Ensure strict implementation on ban of import of e-cigarettes: revenue to CustomsFicci said divergent rulings by different revenue officers in various states has created ambiguity, environment of uncertainty and chaos among taxpayers, suggesting the government should contemplate constituting an independent high-level central body similar to the one under the erstwhile indirect tax regime as ‘Authority of Advance Ruling’ under the GST regime. Veteran industrialist and CII former President Adi Godrej said in just two years, GST has consolidated and is delivering notable outcomes for smoother business, lower logistics costs, and easier payment of taxes in digital mode. “We believe GST will be a forceful instrument for driving economic growth for India in years to come,” he added. CII Director General Chandrajit Banerjee said Indian industry was also really flexible in its approach and that helped in successful roll out of Goods and Services Tax (GST). Ficci chief Somany stated that first step should be immediate inclusion of 5 per cent GST on natural gas. Further, till the time petroleum products are brought within GST net, suitable amendment should be brought in the excise and VAT laws to allow credit of GST paid on inputs/input services and capital goods against payment of excise duty/VAT to the manufacturers/suppliers of petroleum products, he said. With stabilisation of revenues, there is need to further rationalise the category of 28 per cent to only cover de-merit goods. From a medium-term perspective, a rate structure of 2-3 slabs will be welcome and this can also address inverted tax issues, CII said. It further suggested adopting a single registration process, with IGST for the respective states being paid by such centralised registrants and doing away with GST on cross-charge for services. CII recommended that electricity, oil and gas, real estate and alcohol should be included under GST at the earliest, which will lead to seamless input tax credit availability across all sectors. CII added that issues in simplification of GST compliances and filing of returns, matching of invoices and getting seamless input tax credit need to be taken up. The new format of filing of simplified returns released for trials is yet to be tested. Ficci said the GST Council should consider converging the existing band of GST rates to three in line with international standards and highlighted the need for a ‘Zero GST Rating’ for healthcare sector.
Patna: The Bihar Assembly was adjourned till 2 pm on Wednesday amid pandemonium by RJD members seeking debate on the deteriorating law and order in the state through an adjournment motion. As the House assembled at 11 am, RJD member Lalit Kumar Yadav informed Speaker Vijay Kumar Choudhary that he has submitted a notice for an adjournment motion, for a debate on the deteriorating law and order situation in the state, by suspending Question Hour. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity! The Speaker told the RJD leader that he has received the notice for the adjournment motion, which Yadav could raise after the completion of the Question Hour. “This is a long session during which you can raise the issue. It can also be raised during a thre-hour debate on the Home department’s budget for 2019-20,” Choudhary said. After the completion of the Question Hour, the Speaker rejected the RJD MLA’s adjournment motion on the ground that it did not follow the rules of business of the House. Also Read – Encounter under way in Pulwama, militant killed Lalit Yadav and his party members insisted on the debate and rushed into the well of the House, raising anti government slogans and creating ruckus, after which the Speaker adjourned the House till 2 pm. Leader of the opposition in the assembly Tejashwi Prasad Yadav was not present in the House for the fourth consecutive day on Wednesday. The issue of his absence was raised by JD(U) chief whip Ratnesh Sada saying, “Leader of the opposition Tejashwi Prasad Yadav has been absent in the House for past three days.”
Gurugram: Safety for minors still continue to be vulnerable in Gurugram and its neighbouring regions. In a horrific incident, a 12-year -old girl was abducted by three youths, drugged and gang-raped in Nuh. The matter was reported on Sunday afternoon. According to law enforcement officials, the girl had gone out to purchase groceries when two people apparently from her neighbourhood first abducted her, drugged her and then took chance to sexually assault her. They were then joined by one of their other friends. The three then left her at a desolate spot where she then made way to her home and spoke about her ordeal to her relatives. Also Read – Bangla Sahib Gurudwara bans use of all types of plastic itemsThe minor has already lost her mother and father and is staying with her grandparents. The girl is from scheduled caste category and in last four months, this has been a second time where a minor from the scheduled caste category has been sexually assaulted. Gurugram along with its counterpart Faridabad is leading in terms of sexual crimes against minors. In 2018, 120 cases of sexual crimes against minors were reported while it was 110 cases in 2017. Not only sexual crimes but the law enforcement officials also have to deal with increased cases of human trafficking. In 2018, 154 minors were kidnapped from the city out of which 115 were girls. Between 2012 and 2017, over 1062 children have been kidnapped in which 677 are girls. According to Gurugram police, the gangs from Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan are highly active in committing such crimes. In 2019 itself, 45 cases have been registered. In the latest case, a 14-year-old boy was raped by a Gurugram person. The district court in Gurugram had recently pronounced a punishment of 20 years for the person who had raped a minor in 2017.