Opinion

BELOW THE LINE

Our bureaus | Updated on January 12, 2018 Published on June 11, 2017

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Technical snags

The implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) is facing its own set of hurdles. Though the enrolment window for taxpayers under the GST has been re-opened, the portal has been registering technical snags with assessees finding it difficult to register due to problems such as maintenance of the portal or not getting a one time password to register. The GST Network has been working overtime to address these concerns.

Hot potato?

There is no dearth of high profile ministers in the Union Cabinet. But the Narendra Modi government could not find one on Wednesday to do the customary post Cabinet briefing in which several important decisions were taken. First, the Press Information Bureau sent out alerts to media persons about a briefing at 1 pm, which was soon followed by a message stating ‘briefing stands cancelled’. The cancellation was not unusual, but this time around no reason was given, triggering rumour mills. The buzz was that none of the Ministers was willing to go on record to talk about the Minimum Support Price (MSP) hike decision, when farmers around the country were staging protests in different States.

What made matters difficult was that finance minister Arun Jaitley who usually (and readily) accepts the responsibility of briefing the media was away in Paris and Ravi Shankar Prasad, the other minister who also regularly conducts Cabinet briefings, was away at Noida for a Samsung event.

The bottomline: No one to say whether MSP was actually revised or not, and if so for which crops and by how much.

Here goes Kant

Flamboyant Chief Executive of NITI Aayog Amitabh Kant couldn’t hide his delight when he landed up at a conference organised by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) on early Thursday morning. He opened his chief guest’s address with the remark that it was a “great pleasure” to be in the midst of “young and lively audience”.

Kant did not stop with that but went on to say: “Normally when you come to Taj Hotel you are welcomed by pot bellied men!”. Wonder who Kant was hinting at.

Yet another blueprint

Public sector oil retailers know best that the slightest disturbance in prices or availability of auto and cooking fuel will result in flak from the corridors of power.

To ensure that no such disturbances happen while implementing the latest decision of daily revision of petrol and diesel prices from June 16, the retailers have been wooing petrol pump dealers and convincing customers. Dealers have been crying foul stating that it is a decision is hurried, while the customer is confused. IndianOil came out with a statement on Sunday, with a blueprint for smooth roll out of the dynamic pricing regime: Extensive training of dealers so that customers do not face any pricing misinformation; dealers will be given timely information on effective prices at a pre-designated time, say 20:00 hrs for the next day. At automated fuel stations, daily price can be automatically updated centrally. At the non-automated ones, dealers would get the updated price through customised SMSs, e-mails, mobile apps and the web portal for dealers. For their convenience and assurance, customers would be able to fetch daily updated prices of petrol and diesel at all cities through IndianOil’s mobile app, Fuel@IOC.



Erratum

With reference to the report ‘Idea seeks shareholders’ nod to waive recovery of excess wage paid to MD’(June 9), the company has clarified that Himanshu Kapania was paid ₹10 crore in 2016-17, and not ₹10,040 crore, as published. The error is regretted.

Published on June 11, 2017
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