The Summer Budget

Conservative Friends of India welcomes the Summer Budget in which the Chancellor launched a review into crematorium facilities to ensure that they are appropriate to the needs of all users and faiths.

This follows representations to the Chancellor from British Hindus and Sikhs, who are concerned that current facilities are often too small, and not equipped to meet their needs. The consultation will be led by the Department for Communities and Local Government and launch in due course. It is intended to take into account the views of all faiths and members of the community.

Trupti Patel, President of Hindu Forum of Britain said, ‘We at the HFB have been campaigning for culturally sensitive crematorium facilities for many years. It is indeed good news that the present Conservative Government has recognised this very important issue and will be conducting a major consultation exercise that we hope will result in meeting the needs of our community’.

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne said:

“This is a Budget that delivers for British Hindus and Sikhs: backing business, supporting aspiration and standing behind families that work hard.

“Over the past year a number of British Hindus and Sikhs have also raised with me their concerns about cremation facilities for their communities. They’ve told me that often the facilities are not large enough for everyone from the community to pay their respects and don’t always pay enough regard to cultural sensitivities.

“So this Budget announces a review into these facilities. We want to know more about concerns people from all faiths and none have about these facilities, so we can do more to ensure everybody can mark the passing of their loved ones appropriately. That’s why we’ve launched this consultation and I’d urge everyone to make their views known on this important issue.”

Other key measures announced in this budget include:

– A new residence allowance that will effectively take the family home out of inheritance tax for all but the very rich – ensuring parents can pass on their family home to their children and grandchildren.

– Increases in the personal allowance so that work is rewarded in the tax system – the government is helping people keep more of the money they earn by increasing the tax free personal allowance to £11,000 from April 2016, taking 570,000 extra people out of paying income tax altogether and benefitting a basic rate taxpayer by £80.

– Backing aspiration and small business by cutting the cost of hiring new people through raising the employment allowance to £3000. This means a small business could hire 4 people on £12,500 without paying any National Insurance.

– The new National Living Wage, starting at £7.20 next April and rising to £9 an hour by 2020

– Corporation tax to fall to 18% by 2020

– Dividend tax credits will now be replaced by a tax-free allowance of £5,000 of dividend income for all taxpayers.

– A further £8bn committed to NHS spending by 2020, on top of £2bn already committed, showing that the NHS is only “truly safe in Conservative hands”.

Co- Chairman Alok Sharma MP said:

“This is an extremely comprehensive Budget which demonstrates our commitment to delivering our manifesto promises and can be seen as the beginning of the end for Britain’s high tax, high welfare and low wage economy. I particularly welcome the increase in the personal allowance and the introduction of the mandatory National Living Wage which will put more money into the pockets of hard working and people. Businesses will also welcome the further cuts in Corporation Tax and National Insurance, which will help continue to boost business confidence and further reduce unemployment. The Government’s long term economic plan is working for Britain”

Co-Chairman Ranjit Singh Baxi also welcomed the budget, calling it “a budget that rewards hard working families, strengthens the aspirations of SME’s, promotes growth and employment and supports the needs of all Inter faith communities.”

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