“Pay and Resolve” says Supreme Court to Punjab Government

Sand Mining has been the center of focus ever since Capt. Amarinder Singh took charge as Chief Minister of Punjab. In connivance with mining officials, the old sand mafia has continued to excavate sand despite orders from Government and court. From maligning of his minister to being dragged to court over cancellation of mines and then stay over High Court’s order in Supreme Court, the old mining mafia has been his largest pain point.

Wiring High Court’s orders, the Supreme Court rejected the petition of ex-miners and instructs them to surrender the mines. The order instructs Punjab Government to resolve the conflict by paying off the advance profit for the balance term.

While this order solves the long-drawn controversy of ownership of the sand mines, the advance profit will further hit Government of Punjab’s already shallow pocket. This profit to be paid for the balance term of contract will be calculated by multiplying the quantity of balance extractable minor mineral by bid price and subtracting the expenses from it.

What if the quantity of extractable mineral for the total term has already been illegally extracted? May be a lot more, say our sources.

Reference : Supreme Court Order dt 07.05.18

#PunjabMiningRow : Multi-political party backed Sand Mafia

War against sand mafia was one of the key campaign issues during the Punjab Assembly polls. From liquor to stone crushing, mafia cartelization has long root in sand, boulder mining in Punjab. The huge amount received by government through forward bidding indicates how the sand mafia was causing huge losses to the state coffers. The recent order of Honorable High court cancelling 83 mines on the basis of “Reverse Bidding” opens a Pandora box where its apparent that Sand mafia is operative in the state for last two decades and plundered thousand of crores of public exchequers money.

Royalty Theft an unwritten rule – Governed the Punjab

Monopolies flourish in Punjab as party leaders run the state like a “private limited company”. Roots of mafia and cartelization  originate from the system in the past which was managed and manipulated to favour some special groups. These groups penetrate any ruling party through money. Their modus operandi is to grease the palms of all concerned in such a manner that their hold on sand cartelization remains intact and they keep looting the general public and state exchequers simultaneously. According to a 2012 petition filed by lawyer Gurbir Singh Pannu, in Roop Nagar district the total quantity permitted to be taken out in three years was 159,000 tons. There are about 400 crushers in the Roper district and this much quantity of stones will last barely three days.

Reverse bidding – practically no bidding, Just a draw 

Its commented in the High Court order that to control the pit head price the past  government adopted the process of auction through  reverse bidding.  In auction by reverse bidding the state pre-determines various components, which the bidder will pay such as royalty , compensation to land owners, environment clearance expense, weigh bridge expanse etc. The profit of the bidder is also fixed and added to the component. This tool of tie was being used by putting same bid to ensure the draw.

Who controlled the Reverse bidding and How

The sand syndicate consists of

  1. Kuldeep Makkar
  2. Sahibjit Sandhu ( Sambhdhi of Kuldeep Makkar)
  3. Amrik Singh Dhillon
  4. Sukhpal Bhullar-Mohan Pal Pannu ( Brother In law)
  5. Fringe players ( Approved by above four)

Its inconsequential which party is in power, as the cartel governs this trade. With support from some senior civil/police officials, they are having free run starting from allotments to postings of mine officials. All these illegal operations have forced an increase in price of sand in last one decade. The members inter-party allegiance has provided them contacts and easy access in all relevant political parties of the state. Their cog of wheels is so entrenched in mining department that policies are made to suit these players and help them.

How cartelization and bid rigging was done 

Government of Punjab placed 35 rivers for  public auction on 19.12. 2016 in  Ferozpur district and about 625 bids were received which are equal to Government declared Pit head price.  Most interesting thing is that for these 625 bids only 20 IP addresses were used. And out of these 20 , 5 IP addresses logged upto 488 bids.  173 bids were logged in through  same IP of 122.173.165.196 and  193 were logged in through  IP 122.173.237.131.

No draw it was rigging  (same IP and interrelated parties)

There were 12 bidder who placed bids equal to Government declared pit mouth price for Bhawda Azamshah-2 , Hadbast no 222 quarry. Out of 12 bidders, 9 bidder logged in from 122.173.165.196  IP address and 3 from  103.241.242.187 IP address. Hence it was a draw among two group only rather than 12 parties, obvious winner is from 122.173.165.196  IP address.

There were 34 bidders who placed bids equal to Government declared pit mouth price for Ththa, Hadbast no 24 quarry. Out of 34  bidders , 16  bidders logged in from 122.173.165.196  IP address and 18  from 122.173.237.131 IP address. Hence it was a draw among  two group only rather than 34 parties, obvious winner is from 122.173.237.131 IP address.

There were 13  bidders who placed bids equal to Government declared pit mouth price for  Dhandian-2 , Hadbast no 145. Out of 13 bidders , 7  bidders logged in from 122.173.165.196  IP address and 6 from 122.173.237.131 IP address. Hence it was a draw among  two groups only rather than 13 parties , Winner is from  122.173.237.131  IP address.

There were 15  bidders who placed bids equal to Government declared pit mouth price for  Chugetwala , Hadbast no 139 quarry . Out of 15 bidders , 7 bidders logged in from 122.173.165.196  IP address, 6 from 122.173.167.251 IP address and 2 from 27.255.223.64. Hence it draw among three groups and not among 15 parties. Winner is from  122.173.167.251 IP address.

There were 8  bidders who placed bids equal to Government declared pit mouth price for  Masteke, Hadbast no 36 quarry. Out of 8  bidders , 4  logged in from 122.173.165. 196   IP address and 3 from 122.173.167.251 IP address. Hence it draw among 3 group and not 8  parties.  Winner is from 122.173.165.196  IP address

There were 17  bidders who has placed bids equal  to Government declared pit mouth price for  Burrewala,  Hadbast no 04 quarry. Out of 17  bidders , 5   bidders logged in from 122.173.165.196  IP address and 5  from  122.173.237.131 .  Winner is from 122.173.165.196  IP address

It  is conclusive that it was only four groups which were playing all this game of draws by cartelizing. Bidding from same IP address and related companies, is a direct indication of cartelization and bid rigging.  State Government must accept the role of this mafia, incidentally it doesn’t even require hi-tech abilities like tweeting an aerial view from chopper.

Mining mafia exposed as court cancels 83 sand mines in Punjab

Last week, Litmus News highlighted how sand mines were allotted to mafia at rock bottom prices through reverse bidding by earlier Punjab Govt. We exposed how illegal mining and collection of Goonda Tax was still going on, citing the stay order from the Hon’ble High Court. On 12th January, the court gave relief to the ruling Punjab Govt. by dismissing the appeal of sand mafia and cancelling 83 mines. Further, in its order the court took the reply of State Government into consideration,  – that the action of cancelling these mines has been taken to curb the menace of illegal mining, rationalisation of supply and prices and maximisation of State revenue.

The newly adopted progressive auction of 53 mines fetched an estimated revenue of Rs. 1,000 Crores to the present Government, whereas hundreds of old sand mining contracts were allotted to the cartel of contractors headed by mafia at an approximate average of just Rs. 40 Crores per year during the last 10 years. Adding up, the revenue loss to the state in last 10 years was more than 10,000 crores.

Our investigations reveal that the mafia is headed by Kuldeep Makkar, Mohan Pal Singh Pannu, Sahibjit Singh Sandhu, Sukhpal Bhullar (Congress MLA) and Kanwaljit Singh Dhillon (son of Amrik Singh Congress MLA).  It would be interesting to note that Sahibjit Singh Sandhu’s daughter is married to Kuldeep Singh Makkar’s son. By creating cartel of all sand mining contractors, during last 10 years they controlled the sand business in Punjab.

In the ‘reverse bidding method’ cartelization was highly probable due to low cost of auction. In coming times, the cartelization would be reduced if not completely eradicated, because a contractor has to pay 25% of the annual contract amount as security deposit plus the contract money for first quarter of the ensuing year in advance. It would, therefore, be difficult to obtain contracts of large number of mines owing to the cost factor.

To regain their stronghold, the mafia is discouraging the new bidders/entrants in sand mining business in Punjab. They have financed and supported campaigns to stop the new entrants in this business. The mafia would want these mines to be re-auctioned quickly, so that with connivance of mining officials their monopoly could be retained. The new entrants are afraid of this cartel and may not like to participate in the auction if these mines are put to auction in the immediate near future.

File Form TRAN-I to avail Input Tax Credit

Transition to GST provided for trust based transition of input tax credit of the existing taxpayers.  A tax payer could file Form TRAN-1 and avail input tax credit on the basis of closing balance of the input tax credit declared in the last return under the pre GST regime.  The last date for filing of Form TRAN-1 is 27th December, 2017.  In keeping with the philosophy of voluntary compliance, revision of Form TRAN-1 has also been provided.  The last date for revision of TRAN-1 is also 27th December, 2017.

It has been noted that some taxpayers have availed extraordinarily high transitional credit of CGST which is neither commensurate with the trend of input tax credit of the industry nor as maintained by the taxpayer himself in the past.  Some of these high transitional credits may have a bonafide explanation or may be a case of bonafide mistake.  However, it has been noted that high transitional credit has been claimed in many cases for which perhaps no bonafide explanation exists.  Analysis to identify such units is underway.  Such behavior leads to breach of trust between the taxpayer and the tax-administration, which is the bed-rock of self-assessment regime in GST.

Taxpayers who have claimed transitional credit erroneously are advised to avail of the opportunity to revise Form TRAN-1 by 27th December, 2017 and ensure that only correct and bonafide credit is availed in transition, failing which the tax administration would be constrained to initiate audit and enforcement action against the identified units.

Source : Press Relase, 12-12-2017
Issues by : Ministry of Finance, Government of India

RSS registers nationwide protest against the communist rule in Kerala

As announced earlier, on 1st March 2017 the world’s largest paramilitary force Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) registered a nationwide protest. The objective is to draw attention towards recent killings of 11 RSS workers in one year of CPI rule in Kerala. In trademark RSS way, the protest didn’t show any intent to affect public commute or trade. All regional, state and city level offices observed this protest within the sangh premises and during the morning shakhas.
 #FACT (Forum Against Communist Terrorism) has been reignited as per saffron groups. 

What Ram Madhav thinks and why it matters

He is a known and popular face of Saffron, and he is the Chief Strategist deputed to fix J&K region agonies faced by India for 70 years. Ram Madhav, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) national general secretary, is not a very visible person on News Channels but this must not be comprehended as not being actively engaged.

It is believed that he is an architect playing leading role in transformations happening in North East to Foreign Policies.

Last Midnight India Declares Its Taxation Reform

Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 1999 coined this term Goods And Services Tax as the solution to multiple indirect taxes prevailing in India. While the need of such reform was envisioned by Vishwanath Pratap Singh in 1986 inside Indian Parliament, it took India 21 years to fix the problem of taxes. After Demonetization, the India Prime Minister Narendra Modi has yet again proven that he is not here to escape tough steps.

We are reporting from the city of Varanasi, where there is no chaos as showcased by most of the Indian National Media.

Here are seven quick facts about #GSTREFORM :

  1. Goods and Services Tax, in short GST, made most of its progress during three years of Pranab Mukherjee as Finance Minister.
  2. Apart from Manmohan Singh and Chidambaram, almost all past Governments have partially contributed to the reform.
  3. CGST is the paid directly to the Central Government.
  4. SGST is the tax paid to the State Government for products bought within the state.
  5. IGST is the tax paid to the Centre, in case the product is sold outside the state.
  6. Once IGST is paid the products can cross as many Indian State borders.
  7. This reform fractures the very backbone of illegal stocking, cross state harassment by authorities and black money trading.

Litmus News sources have predicted that the Financial Year calculations shall start from January from coming year. This gives the ideal six month run to test this new tax reform. We are calling it a test not because it can in any case fail but give the economy around six months to get accustomed to new taxation structure.

Every buyer would prefer to buy from an entity that has a GSTIN, from individuals to large corporates and even Government. The benefit is clearly the refunds that would come back from the Central and State Governments. GST comes in a relief for most of the unstructured industries producing indigenous goods but only selling locally. Early adopters of GSTIN registration, shall find themselves being preferred over other players, thus opening the doors to sell across states and even internationally.

Congratulations to all fellow Indians on this historic moment of implementation of Goods and Services Tax.

Edit : We recommend our readers to be aware of rumours spread by large industrialists, communists and other anti-national sources.

This Mahashivratri gearBoB opened its doors in Varanasi

gearBoB Consultants is a CRISIL rated NSIC partner service sector enterprise, founded in April 2014. This Public Relations Agency was incepted in Gurugram by Gaurav Bajpai and his friend Moiz Ul Haq. The company started its operations from its first office in Sector 63 Noida in April 2014. gearBoB offers a 30,000 sq ft IT incubator facility in its head quarters in Sector 17 Chandigarh – The City Beautiful.

While gearBoB already has a strong online presence and unique digital reach, this new satellite center situated right in the heart of Varanasi shall further resonate our reach in the market, says Gaurav. He added that gearBoB Varanasi shall offer all our services including research on demand, media buying agency, software consulting and training.

Varanasi, despite being one of the oldest cities, is the new center of global film, media and political attraction also. While Varanasi is not new to advertisers, event managers or startup consultants, gearBoB fixes that gap of a complete 360° branding solution provider. The office located within 50 steps from Luxa Thana on the Aurangabad Road, shall also be used to impart Journalism and Digital Marketing skill training.  The new training center is named Kaushal Vikas Kendra in association with Digital India Club and Linguis Institute, Ambala.

gearBoB exclusive INstead certification in Public Relations intends to digitally literate people so that they can create their digital identities to sell online and take digital payments. While the online training can be taken from anywhere in the world over internet, the office workstations are available for learning to the residents of Varanasi.

Not just websites, complete eBusinesses are setup, managed and branded here, says Yukta Mathur, the Chief Content Analyst of gearBoB Consultants. She is also the Co-founder of Digital India Club, another gearBoB initiaitive that is a unique crowdsourced digital servicing platform. The annual plan offers a dedicated PR officer working on your end to end digitization, branding and marketing plans.

Chandigarh based investors of gearBoB Consultants iterated full support to this third new branch, after Noida  and Chandigarh. He added, Varanasi is also the hub of global tourism for research and devotion. Our long term business plans to offer cost effective publicity management to the global market can soon be realised from Varanasi.

Over the years, gearBoB Consultants along with BholeyKiFauj have mastered the art of Regional eTargeting. They have contributed to the hindi ecosystem through projects like wikipedia, domain names and SEO in regional languages. For example, हरहरमहादेव.com, जयश्रीराम.com and महावीरहनुमान.com

Team Litmus News congratulates everyone behind the setup of this new office and wish all the success in the times to come. Here is a sneak peek inside the facility.