Cabinet nod to reduce Additional Goods Tax on iron, steel, yarn and plastic goods, approves Subsidy for roof top solar power plants, put blanket ban on manufacturing, stocking, sale and use of thermocol product

Shimla: The State Cabinet accorded approval to withdraw tax on all fruits and all vegetables under H.P. Taxation (on Certain Goods Carried by Road) Act, 1999 to provide great relief to the farmers and horticulturists of the State. Besides, transporters would also be relieved from inconvenience for paying the CGCR tax at Parwanoo/ Chakki Mour barrier for carrying fruits and vegetables.

The cabinet, presided by Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, gave nod to reduce/revise the existing rates of Additional Goods Tax (AGT) under Himachal Pradesh Passengers and Goods Taxation Act, 1955 on iron and steel, yarn and plastic goods to benefit the general public.

It decided to reduce the electricity duty on existing small industries from 4 percent to 2 percent and in case of medium industrial units from 10 percent to 7 percent in accordance with the budget announcement. It was also decided to reduce per unit rate from Rs. 1 to 35 paise to agriculture consumers as per budget assurance.

The Cabinet approved the guidelines for providing assistance for installation of anti-hail nets as per budget assurance. The scheme will primarily benefit small and marginal farmers of the State to reduce qualitative and quantitative losses to their horticulture produce. Under the scheme, 80 percent subsidy would be provided to the farmers for purchase of anti-hail nets with the target to bring 30 lakh square meter area under protection of anti-hail nets during the current financial year.

The Cabinet also approved the guidelines for implementation of Mukhya Mantri Greenhouse Renovation Scheme under which 70 percent assistance will be provided for the replacement of polysheet subject to maximum of Rs. 44.80 per square meters as back ended subsidy to the beneficiaries. Pradhan Mantri Matri Vandana Yojna was also approved by the Cabinet under which ‘Rajya Kaksh’ and ‘Zila Kakshas’ would be established.

It gave its approval to the guidelines for implementation of Himachal Pushpa Kranti Yojana for promoting floriculture in the State. The scheme will push forward the State as pioneer in production and marketing of commercial flowers and ornamental crops at National and International level.

Cabinet stamps transportation guidelines for school vehicles

The Cabinet approved the transportation guidelines for safe plying of the school vehicles. According to guidelines, all school vehicles would have first aid box, emergency number displayed, no curtains or music system and inflammatory items in vehicles and the school vehicles should not be more than 15 years old. It should have speed governor and special provision for specially abled students etc.

Subsidy for installing solar power plants at roof tops

It accorded its approval to provide subsidy of 10 percent or Rs. 4000 per kilowatt, whichever is less, to all the domestic consumers, institutions (registered under Society and Trust Act) and Social Sectors (Ashrams run by the Government) for installation of solar power plants at the roof tops of the buildings to encourage use of solar energy.

Cabinet nod to ban manufacturing, stocking, sale and use of thermocol product

The Cabinet gave its consent to impose ban on manufacturing, stocking, sale and use of thermocol cutlery i.e. thermocol cups, plates, glasses or any other item used for serving or consuming food in the State to protect the fragile environment. It was decided that three months’ time would be given to the businessmen to clear their stock and promote patals.