PATNA: In a bid to encourage women and physically challenged people to take up transport business, the Bihar government has decided to give cent per cent tax exemption to them on purchase of commercial vehicles.
"The state government will provide 100 per cent tax exemption to women and handicapped people on purchase of commercial vehicles so that they can take up transport business for livelihood," Transport minister Chandrika Rai informed the Assembly while replying to his department's budgetary demand of Rs 55.76 crore for 2016-17.
The beneficiaries must, however, possess driving licence to avail the tax exemption, he said.
The transport department's budgetary demand was later passed by the House by voice vote.
Rai spoke at length on road safety issues and said installation of High Security Number Plates has been made mandatory in new vehicles from the dealers' point.
Painting a robust picture of the transport department, he said it has substantial assets in Bihar, which in the event of being monetised, could fetch a revenue between Rs 7,000 to Rs 10,000 crore.
The transport department has proposed to develop its assets on Public Private Participation mode to develop infrastructure at its disposal to improve transportation network in the state, Rai said.
He stressed on safety of commuters for which the State Road Safety Authority and a Road Safety Fund were proposed.
Rai said the road safety subject would be taught from Class VI to VIII so that the students could take precaution while driving or using public/private transport later in their lives.
The Transport minister said his department's financial health too has shown improvement with its revenue rising to Rs 11,000 crore by 2015-16 against Rs 200 core in 2007-08.
"We seek to generate revenue to the tune of Rs 1,500 crore in 2016-17," he said, adding the revenue growth would be achieved from sustained increase in purchase of new vehicles.
On loss of revenue due to overloading and tax evasion by transporters, he said all check points in the state have been integrated to ensure prevention of leakage in revenue collection and technology has been put to use to check overloading.
Rai added that permission has been granted for rolling out e-rickshaws and e-cars to curtail emission levels.