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Monday, 14 September 2015

Deloitte Study is an alarm to stabilize the weak tax regime in the country

In a recent study conducted by Deloitte, the international consulting firm found that in terms of predictability of tax laws, India's performance is very disappointing in the Asia-Pacific region. Among 800 tax executives in 20 countries 75 percent people were of the opinion that both China and India have poor tax governance.  India frequently change its tax positions in comparison to other countries in the region. Every jurisdiction has some tax challenges, but India is more intensely affected by these negative reviews.

Among majority of respondents, the perception was clear that the complexity and predictability of tax laws in these two big powers - China and India play a  significant role in determining their investment decisions. Many tax executives in China and India thought that the consistency is the most important issue in making business decisions.

Most people have the same opinion that both India and China tax regimes had become more complex. They pointed out that, these tax jurisdictions have become more  complicated than four years back in 2010 at the time of previous surveys. A cumulative 31 percent of these executives feel that,  the consistency of tax regimes across the region had changed in a significant way and it is not a positive change at all, it is going to be more and more become less consistent day by day. Despite poor tax jurisdiction, the study revealed that India in terms of consistency of tax regime had better results than the counterpart China and Indonesia in the last four years.

India is also ahead of China in tax auditing and punishment. People shared their thoughts that tax administrative procedures in countries like Singapore, Japan and Hong Kong is far better than India. The most disturbing outcome of the report highlighted that the effectiveness of the administrative procedures of India to resolve the tax issues is very low and disappointing.

The irony of our system is that who are behind the formation of tax laws are not well versed with the tax system, market and the implication of the proposed or amended law. A weak bureaucratic machinery is also responsible behind delayed procedures, audits and control measures. The majority of people want to evade the tax, despite the possession of valuable assets. People are not in the habit of disclosing their actual annual earnings and whatever part they are liable to pay they had made circumvent ways to deceive the system. All in all a successive tax regime is only possible in an environment of mutual cooperation and transparent policies. 

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Job Creation Is As Important As Economic Growth

The economy is struggling to grow due to unemployment, which must be regarded as the national concern. While there are many socioeconomic issues, unemployment must be our top priority.  The government should focus on generating new employment opportunities, which would help to reduce poverty and inequality and improve the living standard of the masses, both in the rural and urban India. The environment has led to a great deal of discussion about government policies to create jobs. Unemployment can be a miserable experience and during recessions more people suffer it. Jobs provide people with income to fulfill their daily necessities.  

Job creation has slowed down as a result of governments providing greater support to capital intensive industries rather than labor intensive industries. Lower interest rates have borne down on manufacturing equipment and this has increased unemployment. The government can stimulate job creation when it invests in projects that improve or create new services. A change in monetary policies, tax incentives and changes in regulations affects the labour market in the long run. Jobs can be created simply by innovations and executing the novel ideas in the manufacturing and service sector.

The most difficult, but the most effective way of employment generation is to create new industries. It is possible to emulate other developing countries like China and S. Korea. As India is a liberalized economy and we support free market environment where investment options are more transparent and accessible to everyone.  Nothing should be more important than creating jobs to curtail poverty and accelerate economic growth. Unemployment does hamper the country’s economic growth, whereas job creation requires a stable macroeconomic framework coupled with structural policies that encourage innovation, skills and business development.

Creating jobs is crucial for development. Most developing countries struggle with high unemployment or underemployment. Creating new jobs, improving incomes and working conditions are hugely important. Innovations and technologies contribute to economic growth and employment, but also for overcoming other key problems of development. There are around 200 million unemployed people around the world, while a further 900 million earn too little to live from their income. Secure jobs with social benefits and fair pay offer a way out of poverty, which explains why employment is a key pillar of development.

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Nurture the young minds with healthy thoughts not with sick pornography

Banning of pornography material could be the most ideal step taken by the government. The government has been tracking all internet service providers for them to act upon the matter, to stop and to ban pornographic content. This act of government has already choked down more than 800 anti-social websites. There are more than 40 million porn websites that are working from outside the boundaries of India. All the government can do is planning and monitoring the act.

The younger generation of today who will be guiding the world tomorrow is facing various plights. Pornography has entered through all means of communication in this commercialized world. Pornography through internet has become a worldwide problem because this could be obtained by everyone with the knowledge of using internet facilities without any differences of age.

Child pornography has become a new way of earning billions of money. Exposing children in erotic poses or engaging in sexual activities is pornography and this should come to an end for the modesty of our culture and society. Of the total number of pornography websites, one-fifth is child erotica websites and the largest groups of porn viewers are between the age of 12 to 17. This content includes sexual pleasure from observing other sexual activities which leads to unacceptable lifestyle and criminal activities. Cyber-crime has become an issue in almost all the countries. Persons in the young age, including both gender groups continuously induced through porn viewing become slaves to it and they are spoiling themselves.

Closing or blocking porn websites to protect our generation is not the only way out. People engaged in producing and selling porn materials by violating the rules and regulations should be brought to court and shall be charged with severe punishment. Steps should be taken to protect children from unwholesome content which is deviating them from the right path. 

The steps taken by the government to ban pornographic content and websites are very much in favor of young and innocent minds. We should try to inculcate good moral values and principles in the growing age of our children. If we couldn't protect them, then the coming generation falls prey to drug addiction, robbery and disrespect for the women. The nation demands a generation free from mental and physical sickness and psychologically healthy people no doubt will be the drivers of India's growth in the near future.

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Renewable Energy for Sustainable Growth

The consumption of electricity in India is much more than its production and its need has been increasing even more rapidly due to the rising population and industrial growth. India’s energy sector is struggling to meet the massive electricity demand. 

Unreliable supply and energy shortage is impeding India’s economic development. Even a power grid failure of lesser magnitude causes millions of people to stay without electricity for hours. Sometimes these power breaks last for days or even weeks, which lead to the complete shutdown of production in many companies, and other essential infrastructures like hospitals, banks, etc. Every small as well as large power blackouts can have devastating effects on companies which are not prepared for this. There is the need to develop sustainable energy solutions to eliminate wide-ranging power failures in the future that will ultimately help in economic development.  

Indian government should focus on the proper development of renewable energy like solar, wind, biomass and hydro energy to generate electricity. It is the best investment for both long-term economic growth and making a pollution-free environment. Moreover, a constructive energy policy could provide employment to millions of people and in the decentralization of energy distribution, which eventually would help in reducing the load on the grid. This will be a more cost-effective solution to provide affordable energy for everyone. 

India should take maximum advantage of solar energy- the prime source of free and unlimited energy. According to a report, with more than 300 days of sunshine, India has the total capacity of producing electricity from the sun is about 5,000 TWh of solar insolation every year. Even if a tenth part of this energy was utilized, it could mark the end of the India’s present power transmission and distribution issues. In addition, India can ramp up its attempts to develop and implement huge commercial wind and solar farms to meet the nation’s energy requirements and economic development goals.

The present power production capacity of India is about 200,000 MW and it would increase in future if right energy policies are formulated. There is a dire need to develop and execute favourable government policies to improve the exponential growth of renewable energy. Giving renewable energy a boost is not just a choice, but a necessity. 

Currently, India is heavily dependent on fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gas to produce electricity, which are not only expensive, but also pollute the environment. Due to our vast population, India purchase energy from outside to meet the power demands, and that leads to increase in our electricity cost. Moreover, the coal reserves are limited in India therefore the excessive use of thermal energy may lead to the deficiency of such resources. Hence, it is vital to minimize the use of such resources or to use them judiciously, if we want to save something for future generations. And instead of purchasing power from outside, we should make the optimal utilization of natural resources, which will subsequently help us to improve our ecosystem. It will be considerably cheaper if we make a shift from nuclear power to renewable energy. 

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

A Great Loss to the Nation: The Missile Man, Dr. Abdul Kalam Passes Away

Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, the nation’s 11th president, widely acclaimed as the people’s president, passed away, leaving a noticeable void that cannot be filled. It is hard to believe for each of us that we are now in a world without him. It is really a bleak day for India.

Born in a poor Tamil Muslim family in Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu, Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam overcame many obstacles and difficult circumstances to study physics and aerospace engineering. He received India’s top honours including the Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Bharat Ratna.

He started his career as a scientist and science administrator at the DRDO in 1960 after finishing his graduation from the MIT University- Chennai. There, he first designed a small helicopter that he designed for the Indian Army. Later he joined ISRO, where he was the project director of India's first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III) that brought him great laurels and prestige. He played a vital technological and political role in India’s Pokharan-II nuclear tests before he became the president of India. He was closely involved in the military missile development efforts and Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme which developed missiles like Agni and Prithvi. 

Dr. Abdul Kalam succeeded K.R. Narayanan and served as president for complete five years from 2002 until 2007, enjoying the backing of both ruling and opposition parties.

It was a quirk of fate that he breathed his last, while doing he liked the most-educating students- at the Indian Institute of Management-Shillong (IIM-S). He was a top scientist of global reputation, whose contributions to the progression of science and technology are unparalleled. His rise from a science lab to Rashtrapati Bhawan had earned him the sobriquet Missile Man.

A P J Abdul Kalam was a pragmatic educational scholar and visionary, who had opened new opportunities for studies and research in the area of ballistics, aeronautics and aerospace mechanics, and metallurgy. Dr. Abdul Kalam believed that education is the most crucial element for the development and prosperity of a country. He had a notable contribution in the field of education. He loved being amidst children and believed that any education system is good which has the capability to instil five aspects such as inquisitiveness, technology, creativity, entrepreneurial and moral leadership in the students’ minds. An eminent scientist and a great thinker, Mr. Kalam had the inimitable honour of receiving honorary doctorates from 30 universities and institutions.

Despite his immense power and position, he never had any kind of pride about himself. In fact, he led a very simple life and treated everyone with a lot of respect. He was a modest and an iconic personality, who with his phenomenal ability and strong leadership skills brought together people from different distinctions and disciplines to work together. His contributions to education, politics, India’s space and research projects and various other sensitive defence projects are remarkable.

He will be sorely missed and remembered forever.

Thursday, 23 July 2015

Should India Ban Tobacco Products?

It is generally acknowledged that smoking is injurious to health. We also know that people have liberty to speak and eat of their choice in India. Therefore, stopping someone for something is not a right conduct. But the claim of a few ministers that not every person who consumes tobacco has cancer is not acceptable. As it somehow represents that not every accident leads to death. Some people are genetically stronger than others but it does not mean that tobacco does not cause any harm to them in one way or the other. 

Every year, almost six million people worldwide die of Oral Cancer caused by tobacco. And, as per the statement of head and neck surgeon of Tata Memorial Hospital, Tobacco companies all across the country has already admitted that their product is detrimental to health, therefore, they accepted to approve required health warning in their packaging materials as a part of manufacturer liability. People who smoke not only put their lives into risks of cancer but also endanger the lives of people near them. For that reason, smoking is prohibited in public places.

But, is banning tobacco an ideal solution? There was a law passed in the USA in 1920 to ban alcohol, which led to the birth of criminals and black marketers.   As such law creates an environment where culprit can stand in order to make a profit even such things are deemed illegal. Even it will create turbulence among those who are addicted to nicotine. Therefore, banning does not stop people to get the things they want. Government gave a large pictorial warning that is definitely a good move to discourage the use of tobacco.

Moreover, tobacco is one of the biggest and easiest sources of revenue for the Indian Government. It has a major contribution to economy by generating employment for lakhs of traders, farmers and manufacturers. However, regulating tobacco consumption might help.

There are a few things that can be done in order to regulate the consumption of tobacco. Government can increase the price of tobacco and apply heavy taxes on it so that it gets priced out of most pockets. Regulating the production of cigarettes may also help.

Also, if the price of electronic cigarettes gets reduced, then the people who are addicted can gradually control this addiction. In addition, there is need of public figures to campaign against smoking because they influence people the most.

Monday, 20 July 2015

Raise your voice for the tamed and speechless

Known for rich heritage and culture, India always had a special place and respect for animals. Even we can also see the significant role of animals like monkeys, swan, cow, crow etc, in our religious manuscripts. In early times there was no such need of animal welfare society or organization as each home itself was an animal welfare institution.  But the population explosion and urbanization have brought a big change in the society. 

Previously, dead animals’ hides were only used to make leather, today even a large number of healthy, young animals are slaughtered for leather and meat.  Animals have become soft targets for anyone trying to make quick money. Be it a pet dog, a chicken kept in cramped cage for slaughter, cattle packed like sardines in trucks heading for the slaughter house, or the dancing bears or monkeys performing on the streets and in the circuses, all kinds of animals face countless sufferings at the hands of humans. 

People find the community dogs and cats, dwelling in the colonies, as a nuisance and want them expelled. In actual, this is happened because of urbanization, the open spaces which were used to be the shelter of animals like cats and dogs are now changed into buildings and factories, letting these animals roam around the localities. 

It is a well known fact that a large number of failed, injured and old race horses were sold to a knackery, where they are killed for pet food or slaughtered for human consumption, when they were no longer profitable for the horse racing industry.  How biased and ruthless we humans are for these speechless animals as we ourselves avail the pensions after retirement while slaughter these old or injured animals when they deserve the utmost care.

Despite increased awareness about animal rights, cruelty against animals is still aplenty. In such conditions, it is important to make more animal welfare societies in each community. Also, more veterinary physicians and hospitals for the proper treatment of sick and injured animals are required. Government should set clear legal limits to human behaviour relative to animals. A strict legal action should be taken against the person who violates animal rights and disregards the well being of animals. Awareness programs about animal issues and environment should be regularly organized in schools, colleges and social groups. Although Indian Government has made several laws for the welfare of the animals and have taken strict measures against the use of live animals in scientific researches, yet more need to be done in this area, and being human we all know; what they expect from us? Of course, not cruelty.

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

The poor are invoking the people in power

It is the irony of our country that the people of India now struggling for those basic rights which were used to be the major causes of India's freedom struggle. Swaraj was the dream of Mahatma Gandhi, mission of B. G. Tilak and spirit of every Indian during the freedom struggle which ended 68 years ago. But, why the historic speech of Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru 'Tryst With Destiny' which that time enthused every man and woman of the newly emancipated India. Despite 67 years of Independence a large section of society is deprived of the three basic needs; food, clothes and shelter.

More than 300 million people in India are living in extreme poverty, and according to the report by Oxfam, India is the domicile of a third of the world’s poor and hungry population. If we calculate the poverty line using the two dollars per capita income a day on purchasing power parity, then statistics showcase that more than 80 percent rural and almost 70 percent urban population in India is eligible to call poor.

Even after completing 67 years of independence a majority of population in the country is a victim of hunger, poverty, unemployment and inequality. 56 percent of households don’t have any piece of land, and only 9.7 percent of all rural households in total, have a family member with a salaried job. This is the reality of the masses, which portrays that how grim and gloomy is the situation of the people who work on farms to feed the nation, this is the condition of people who work day and night to erect skyscrapers and bridges. Poor labourers who work in freezing winters and hot summers to construct schools and colleges are helpless to enrol their own children.  

Our politicians and policy makers must understand that people in sheer destitute are not seeking or expecting hypothetical democratic sovereignty, they are desperately awaiting an era of good governance, which will bring equality, justice and above all emancipate them from hunger and poverty.

Monday, 22 June 2015

Is our society really civil?

In the contemporary world Civil Society has become an integral part of everyday discussions, entailing from practising positive politics to bring about intellectual revolutions, civil society has become talk of the towns, everywhere. Be it a comfortable coffee shop, an overcrowded bus stop, a busy railway station, a famous book stand, a sophisticated airport lounge or just a tea stall thronged by gossip mongers , everyone seems to be so worried about the society, and as a responsible citizen tends to modify things in a positive manner. Of late, it has been quite evident that most of the civil societies came into existence because of the never quenching thirst of getting attention.  It would be harsh to judge it all but leaving a few exceptions aside, the very honest conviction of Civil Society has failed badly.
The common man is fighting a battle against this pseudo socialism existing in the society today, he tried to convey a message to everyone that nation comes first & humanity should be our priority in every case, no matter how hard the situation becomes. He has always stood tall against every social evil all his life fighting for the rights of human being an institution alone, when needed. Corruption & Communalism have always been his enemies, and he is fighting with them alone. Several times, he decided to take a revolutionary step, to have his cravings for safeguarding human rights of every Indian. It’s high time we must ask ourselves the big questions that, are we civil or even social, to the core of our souls? No, we aren’t, because had we been, The common man would not be fighting his battle alone.

Industrial intervention made Social Work as an emerging sector and it has evolved as the centre of now, business houses came forward to be a part of this, in order to chisel out a good repute for their already functional enterprises. Politicians too, realized the need of being social and hence began to be a part of the social gatherings every fortnight in name of social welfare. Media persons too hunting for some breaking news added glamour to such gatherings, fuelling the Page3 culture amongst the wannabe celebrities. It’s all the same thing as the idioms says, Old Rum in New Bottle. Welfare is absent from most of these party, it has just become a trend & everyone is reaping benefits made available via funding by global agencies. Nobody cares. We need to be more civil in our conducts to reach out and tell the common man that he is not alone.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Solution in Action

Scientists have informed for years about the repercussions of rising Carbon dioxide level in the environment. Today, developed nations are celebrating their industrial and commercial success while most of the third world countries are afflicted by droughts, floods, storms and low agricultural productivity. And, this not the end of a crisis, a large part of the earth is bemoaning on food scarcity, hunger, malnutrition and untimely deaths. Besides, they are forced to leave their homes due to the adversities of nature. As per the 'Migration and Global Environmental Change' report, around 190 million people in Asia and Africa will turn homeless by 2060, just because of natural catastrophes caused by climate change.
Provision of food, education, infrastructure, medical services and sanitation to millions of refugees will be a great challenge to Asian and African countries. The large scale migration can even spark territorial violence between native dwellers and immigrants. Such violent activity arouses the need of more police personnel and fast law and order machinery which can be made effective only after an increase in the public expenditure. Governments now have to choose between infrastructure and security, as both the areas cannot be addressed simultaneously due to the limited public funds. The recent earthquake in Nepal has terribly shaken the economy of a country that was already in crisis. Thousands of people are still unable to find a decent shelter and adequate livelihood. Consequently, they are compelled to migrate to India and other neighbouring countries. Scientists believe that the next 20 to 30 years will be more challenging to the entire world and especially the third world countries.

In the 1960s, carbon dioxide levels rose at a rate of 0.7ppm a year and today it is moving up at a rate of 2.1ppm annually. Environmentalists often say that unplanned urbanisation, unmonitored industrialisation, and uncontrolled sale of automobiles are mainly responsible for the rising pollution problems. Of course, these are the prime contributors, but it is the lack of political will which is unable to put a tab on this global monster. It is the time to take some concrete decision lest nothing shall be left, except guilt and remorse. Being a constitutional matter advocate, I request all to come forward, join hands with active NGOs working honestly in this regard and pursue the authorities to take stern decisions who are violating the laws. Although, it is a tough task, but our unflinching determination and mutual support can once again make this earth a suitable place to live.    

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Women Safety in the Corporate World

Since the earliest human civilizations, women joined men in the establishment of society, trade, commerce and all other productive activities. On an average women comprises about 32% of the workforce in Indian IT Industry, which employs close to three million direct and 10-12 million people indirectly. The contribution of women in the growth of the economy has been immense and it is the responsibility of government and industries to provide a safe and secure working environment for women in the country on the urgent basis because crime against women is severely affecting their social and economic conditions.

The issue of women's safety at the workplace is of prime importance and utmost concern and every big or small firm need to take care of it. Women security should be high on priority for every organization, therefore, it is quite necessary that companies should constantly review the security policy and safety measures. Employers must ensure that the workplace is violence-free for all employees, including women by enforcing zero tolerance policies against verbal or physical abuse, sexual harassment and any other form of violence. 

Things to Remember!
A woman employee must honestly assess her strength as well as weaknesses and based on this self-appraisal she must explore a career option that hones her skills and subdue the limitations. This way she can make a confident entry in the industries and avert potential performance threats from her male counterparts. Confidence makes you strong and prepare you to take workplace challenges in a very positive manner. So, never compromise with your performance and always bang on the critics with your superb records. 

Focus on 3Cs
Coordination, co-operation and communication are the three strong weapons for every employee to protect oneself from all sorts of attacks and conspiracies.  Coordinate well with people in your team, co-operate others at their calls, especially of women workers and communicate with the authorities and other female employees in a state of danger or doubtful circumstances, speak-up, if you ever notice something wrong. Be ready to nip the bud and avail all communication media available at the office premises. Women with their smart EQ and good communication skills can control every situation, practice these 3Cs effectively to avoid workplace problems. 

Education has been a great enabler in the development and empowerment of women. The government has also started mobile apps to ensure safety of women in Metro cities. For example Delhi police has recently started a new mobile app known “Himmat” where women can ask for help at any time anywhere. Women should be educated about the measures and actions to be taken in case of any emergency.

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Human Trafficking is a Blot on Humanity

Gladys Lawson writes in her book Blood Borne Connections, “I know that my future will be better than my past because I believe & will act on my belief.” Human Trafficking in India is not an alarming issue at present, but nobody can deny its embarkation into the Indian lands via Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh & Tibet. Going by definitions, there is a significant difference between migrations and trafficking, the former one being a self-motivated event and the latter being a forced one, but the need of the hour is to realize and act according to the differences as trafficking is going to be a major problem for India due to the fact that it shares open and permeable borders with many neighbors.

 The United Nations Organization (UNO) identifies Human Trafficking in persons as a serious crime and a grave violation of human rights. Every year, thousands of men, women and children fall into the hands of traffickers, in their own countries and abroad. In the contemporary world, almost every country is tackling with this serious problem and is reasonably affected by trafficking, whether as a country of origin, transit or destination for victims.

In India some NGOs have taken a considerably effective stand at the very outset of it, to name a few, Prajwala, Not For Sale, Apne Aap & Bachpan Bachao Andolan, are the front-runners which are working effectively to eradicate this global social evil. Recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons, by threatening,  use of force, coercion, abduction, fraud, deception, abuse of power or vulnerability, or giving payments or benefits to a person in control of the victim for the purpose of exploitation, which includes sexual exploitation, forced labor, slavery or similar practices and the removal of organs. It could be well acknowledged as a fatal issue as it was recently portrayed in a highly acclaimed Turkish television drama Kurtlar Vadisi woven in the backdrop of the infamous Abu Ghareb Prison Scandal. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs.

The sense of respect for humanity is fast disappearing from the evil minds around the world, eyeing the fat profits in the illegal trade through trafficking of humans, these criminals are committing a crime against the entire humanity, which makes it very important for India to put a thorough cap over the shared borders through which trafficking cases have been recorded in order to make this world a better place for humanity to live.