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Salman advocates tax benefits for cosmopolitan societies

Sunday, August 09, 2009 11:51:28 AM, UNI

Minister for Minority Affairs

Salman Khurshid

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New Delhi: Minister for Minority Affairs Salman Khurshid favours providing disincentives for those residential colonies which do not have a cosmoplitan character.

''You can have incentives and disincentives in the form of more or less taxes for these colonies to encourage them to accommodate people from every caste and religion,'' he said.

Khurshid expressed these views in an informal interaction with media here this week during which he was asked about his Ministry's reaction to the refusal by the Nibbana Cooperative Housing Society to give film actor Emraan Hashmi a no objection certificate to allow him to buy a flat in Pali Hill in Bandra  allegedly because of his being a Muslim.


He was asked whether the Equal Opportunities Commission, which was soon to come into being, could redress the grievances like the one faced by the film actor.


Khurshid said there were other commissions which looked into cases of individual grievances, as the Equal Opportunities Commission would deal with larger grievances, and not only of  minorities.

The Minister, however, said the Commission could do things like asking the Government to impose heavier taxes on those colonies which do not reflect the diversity of the country. Such incentives and disincentives exist in some countries of the world like Singapore, he said.

He said the Commission would have a statutory status and would act like a forum where people could register their complaints if they felt they were denied any benefits on grounds of their religion, sex, religion, caste, race, descent or language.

Hashmi has taken his compliant to the Maharashtra State Commission for Minorities. He is reported to have said that it was not just a question of Muslims, as he knew people of other communities who faced a similar kind of discrimination, which should not be tolerated.

The managing committee of the housing society has, however, denied all charges made by the actor. A written statement issued by the society said, "There is no minority or majority but only Indians and we are proud of the fact.''





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