Chancellor heeds pleas of Sikhs, Hindus



Chancellor George Osborne has launched a review into crematorium facilities at the 2015 budget to ensure that they are appropriate to the needs of all users and faiths…reports Asian Lite News

PM visits Leamington Spa Sikh TempleThis 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 Government wants to know more about these issues and what steps can be taken to improve existing facilities in line with current law.

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.”

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.

Other measures announced in the Budget that will deliver for British Asians 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.