The state government on Tuesday announced withdrawal of
value-added tax (VAT) on foodgrain, trying to provide
some relief to the skyrocketing prices of essential
commodities and petroleum products a day after the BJP
had suffered a crushing defeat at its power citadel
At present, a VAT of 4% is imposed on foodgrain and the
state exchequer will lose at least a hundred crore every financial year with the
The decision to withdraw VAT on foodgrain was taken by the council of ministers
as deputy chief minister Hemant Soren had announced this in the assembly's
Cabinet secretary Aditya Swaroop said: "VAT on foodgrain has been withdrawn. The
council of ministers decided to withdraw VAT on foodgrain except branded items."
He added that the branded products manufactured in the state would also come
The cabinet also rolled back VAT on towel, bedsheets, napkins and blankets as it
directly affects the weaker sections of the society.
The council of ministers also approved the proposal for recruitment of
engineers, officers and other employees in the Jharkhand State Electricity Board
(JSEB) by outsourcing the work to Faridabad-based National Power Training
"Keeping in mind the future of thousands of students who failed in the
intermediate arts, science and commerce examinations the result of which was
declared by the Jharkhand Academic Council last month the cabinet agreed to make
amendment in rules for 2011 and provide grace marks. A student, who has failed
in one subject, will get up to 10 marks and in case of those who have failed in
two, will get six marks in each subject," said Swaroop.
Another important decision taken by the cabinet was providing accidental
insurance benefit to workers under the MGNREGA. In case of accidental death or
permanent disability, the victim's family will get Rs 75,000.
The long-pending controversy related to payment of consultancy fee to Malaysian
company, Meinhardt, for preparation of a detailed project report of sewerage and
drainage system of Ranchi was also cleared. The payment was held by the state
government after allegations of irregularity in preparation of the project
report and a vigilance inquiry was ordered. The cabinet decided to pay the
consultancy fee of Meinhardt.
"The company had moved court against the decision of the state government to
hold payment. The court has asked the government to pay the consultancy fee,"