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From the archives- dated May 4, 1965

Accord on ceasefire in sight

India and Pakistan are nearing agreement for a cease-fire in the disputed Rann of Kutch, a Pakistan Foreign Office spokesman indicated to-day [May 3, in Karachi]. He said Pakistani forces, which pushed about 20 miles deep into the Indian lines in the dangerous frontier flareup, are already exercising restraint, and hostilities have almost completely stopped. The spokesman refused comment on the apparent existence now of a de facto cease-fire. He also declined to say flatly that a cease-fire agreement is near, but clearly implied it by saying: “An announcement on the final stages of negotiations is expected to be made in a day or two, possibly to-morrow.”

Wealth tax exemption

Extension of the higher development rebate of 25 per cent to 21 more industries and extension of the scope of the five-year exemption of individuals and Hindu undivided families from wealth tax on the values of their investment in the equities of new industrial venture are the important changes proposed by the Finance Minister, Mr. T.T. Krishnamachari, in the Finance Bill in the Lok Sabha to-day.

He said the latter extension would facilitate the acquisition of shares of new companies by members of the public from the financial institutions which had under-written and were holding new equity issues floated in the recent past. No basic change either in direct or indirect taxes was proposed. While turning down the request that the time of six months allowed for paying tax on unaccounted money disclosed under the voluntary disclosure scheme be extended, Mr. Krishnamachari agreed to shares or debentures of a joint stock company or mortgage of immovable property being furnished as security instead of securities in the form of a bank guarantee or Government securities.

End to towel-spreading

“Towel spreading” in third class compartments of passenger trains leaving Madras Egmore and Central Stations has been effectively stopped, much to the relief of the travelling public. Hitherto, towels were spread over luggage carriers in third class compartments of trains, making, as it were, reservation for sleeping by unauthorised persons.

As a matter of convention, the travelling public accepted this kind of “reservation” allowing one person to sleep over the luggage carrier plank, to the great inconvenience of passengers who travelled in the compartment, which is an un-reserved one.

To put an end to this unauthorised practice, a batch of railway police constables proceed to the station yard and come in the rakes of the different trains up the platform, thus preventing anyone from entering the carriages in the yard.


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