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China’s satellites spot possible debris from missing plane

Malaysia Missing plane

There is a ‘glimmer of hope’ after China’s satellites spotted three floating pieces of possible debris in the South China Sea between Malaysia and Vietnam

Malaysia Missing planeBeijing: China today said it would not give up its efforts in searching for the missing Malaysia Airlines plane as long there is a ‘glimmer of hope’ after its satellites spotted three floating pieces of possible debris in the South China Sea between Malaysia and Vietnam.

China will not give up its efforts in searching for the missing aircraft with 154 Chinese passengers aboard “as long as there is a glimmer of hope,” Chinese Premier Li Keqiang told the media at the end of the parliament session.

“We will not give up any suspected clue that is being found,” he said.

“We are also looking very closely at all suspected clues showing on satellite images,” he said.

His comments came after a Chinese satellite found three floating objects at a suspected crash site of the missing Malaysian Airlines plane.

He said that the Chinese government has asked all relevant parties in the ongoing massive international search to enhance coordination to investigate the cause and to locate the missing jetliner as soon as possible.

China’s State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (SASTIND) said early today that the objects were monitored in the South China Sea at 6.7 degrees north latitude and 105.63 degrees east longitude, spreading across an area with a radius of 20 kms.

The satellite images, which were captured around 11 am on Sunday, showed the objects measuring 13 by 18 meters, 14 by 19 meters and 24 by 22 meters respectively.

The images are being analysed, according to the SASTIND.

The plane has been missing for over five days since contact with it was lost early on Saturday. It was flying over the Ho Chi Minh air traffic control area in Vietnam and carrying 227 passengers, including 154 Chinese.

The international search for the missing plane, which has so far involved at least 40 ships and nearly 40 aircraft from 12 countries, entered its sixth day today, but the whereabouts of the Boeing 777-200 remain unknown.

China has employed 10 satellites to provide technological support in attempts to locate the aircraft, which was expected to land in Beijing at 6:30 am local time on Saturday.

China’s state-run Xinhua news agency quoted Malaysia’s Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein as saying that Malaysia has dispatched an aircraft to the site where Chinese satellites photographed the three ‘suspected floating objects’ in the search for the missing jet.

China’s vice minister of transport He Jianzhong said Chinese merchant ships are travelling in the Straits of Malacca and will help provide assistance while Malaysian officials said the plane may have drifted to the Andaman Sea.

Chinese forces, including eight vessels and five helicopters, will cover 19,768 square km of waters today in search of the missing plane, he said.

Forces have searched 23,282 square km of waters so far suspected to be the crash site of the missing jet, China Maritime Search and Rescue Centre said.

He called for all information to be comprehensively analyzed and flexibility in the search operation. He said that China will be in close contact with Malaysian search forces and inform Malaysia of its search plans.

He said the centre will work with relevant Chinese authorities in stepping up satellite surveillance work.

Contact with the aircraft was lost while it was over the Ho Chi Minh City air traffic control area in Vietnam.


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Union Budget for 2015-16 Highlights

* No change in personal Income Tax

* Health Insurance Premium deduction hiked from Rs 15,000 to Rs 25,000; for senior citizens to Rs 30,000

* Transport allowance exemption hiked to Rs 1,600, from Rs 800 per month

* Additional 2% surcharge on people earning over Rs 1 cr; to fetch Rs 9,000 cr

* Wealth tax abolished

* Direct Taxes Code (DTC) dropped

* Rs 50,000 deduction for contribution to New Pension Scheme

* To lower Corporate Tax to 25% over next four years

* GAAR implementation deferred by 2 years to April 2017

* Service Tax rate hiked to 14%, from 12.36%

* Tax free bonds for roads, railways, irrigation projects

* 2015-16 growth between 8-8.5%, double digit growth feasible

* Retail inflation close to 5% by March, room for monetary policy easing

* To achieve fiscal deficit of 3% of GDP by 2017-18

* Fiscal Deficit target 3.9% in 2015-16, 3.5% in 2016-17

* Revenue Deficit to be 2.8% in 2015-16

* Current Account Deficit for 2014-15 to be below 1.3% of GDP

* To introduce comprehensive law to deal with black money

* Benami property transaction bill to tackle black money transaction in real estate soon

* 100% deduction for contribution to Swachh Bharat, Clean Ganga projects

* GST to be put in place by April 1, 2016

* Internationally competitive direct tax regime to be put in place to incentivise saving

* Incentivise use of credit, debit cards; disincentivise cash transaction to curb black money.

* 7 pc surcharge on firm earning Rs 1 crore to Rs 10 cr

* Disinvestment target pegged at Rs 69,500 cr

* Net borrowings pegged at Rs 4.56 lakh cr

* AIIMS to be set up in J&K, Punjab, Assam, Tamil Nadu and Himachal Pradesh

* Indian Gold Coin with Ashok Chakra, Gold Bond, gold monetisation scheme proposed to check gold import

* Forward Markets Commission to be merged with SEBI

* PPP model in infrastructure to be revised and revitalised

* MGNREGA allocation hiked by Rs 5,000 cr

* Nirbhaya Fund allocation hiked by Rs 1,000 crore

* 5 Ultra Mega power projects to be set up at Rs 1 lakh cr

* To create world class IT hub; Rs 150 cr

* States to be equal partners in economic growth

* To bring a new bankruptcy code in 2015-16

* Committed to subsidy rationalisation by cutting leakages

* National Skill Mission to be launched, to develop employability of youth

* Rural infra development fund to have Rs 25,000 cr corpus

* Visa on arrival scheme to be expanded to 150 countries

* PSU ports to be encouraged to become companies

* Non Plan expenditure at Rs 13.12 lakh cr, Plan expenditure at Rs 4.65 lakh cr

* Gross tax mop up at Rs 14.49 lakh cr

* Direct tax proposals will lead to a loss of Rs 8,315 cr; indirect tax proposal gain will be over Rs 23,000 cr

* Tax payers to get income tax benefit of Rs 4.44 lakh

* To introduce 2 pc Swachh Bharat cess on Service Tax

* Customs duty on OLED TV abolished

* Excise duty on leather shoes costing Rs 1,000 lowered to 6 pc from 12 pc

* New tax proposals to bring revenue gain of Rs 15,068 cr

* 50 lakh toilet built under Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, 6 crore toilet targeted.