THE HIMALAYAN TALK: INDIAN GOVERNMENT FOOD SECURITY PROGRAM RISKIER

http://youtu.be/NrcmNEjaN8c The government of India has announced food security program ahead of elections in 2014. We discussed the issue with Palash Biswas in Kolkata today. http://youtu.be/NrcmNEjaN8c Ahead of Elections, India's Cabinet Approves Food Security Program ______________________________________________________ By JIM YARDLEY http://india.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/04/indias-cabinet-passes-food-security-law/

THE HIMALAYAN TALK: PALASH BISWAS CRITICAL OF BAMCEF LEADERSHIP

[Palash Biswas, one of the BAMCEF leaders and editors for Indian Express spoke to us from Kolkata today and criticized BAMCEF leadership in New Delhi, which according to him, is messing up with Nepalese indigenous peoples also. He also flayed MP Jay Narayan Prasad Nishad, who recently offered a Puja in his New Delhi home for Narendra Modi's victory in 2014.]

THE HIMALAYAN DISASTER: TRANSNATIONAL DISASTER MANAGEMENT MECHANISM A MUST

We talked with Palash Biswas, an editor for Indian Express in Kolkata today also. He urged that there must a transnational disaster management mechanism to avert such scale disaster in the Himalayas. http://youtu.be/7IzWUpRECJM

THE HIMALAYAN TALK: PALASH BISWAS LASHES OUT KATHMANDU INT'L 'MULVASI' CONFERENCE

अहिले भर्खर कोलकता भारतमा हामीले पलाश विश्वाससंग काठमाडौँमा आज भै रहेको अन्तर्राष्ट्रिय मूलवासी सम्मेलनको बारेमा कुराकानी गर्यौ । उहाले भन्नु भयो सो सम्मेलन 'नेपालको आदिवासी जनजातिहरुको आन्दोलनलाई कम्जोर बनाउने षडयन्त्र हो।' http://youtu.be/j8GXlmSBbbk

THE HIMALAYAN TALK: PALASH BISWAS LASHES OUT KATHMANDU INT'L 'MULVASI' CONFERENCE

अहिले भर्खर कोलकता भारतमा हामीले पलाश विश्वाससंग काठमाडौँमा आज भै रहेको अन्तर्राष्ट्रिय मूलवासी सम्मेलनको बारेमा कुराकानी गर्यौ । उहाले भन्नु भयो सो सम्मेलन 'नेपालको आदिवासी जनजातिहरुको आन्दोलनलाई कम्जोर बनाउने षडयन्त्र हो।' http://youtu.be/j8GXlmSBbbk

THE HIMALAYAN TALK: PALASH BISWAS BLASTS INDIANS THAT CLAIM BUDDHA WAS BORN IN INDIA

THE HIMALAYAN VOICE: PALASH BISWAS DISCUSSES RAM MANDIR

Published on 10 Apr 2013 Palash Biswas spoke to us from Kolkota and shared his views on Visho Hindu Parashid's programme from tomorrow ( April 11, 2013) to build Ram Mandir in disputed Ayodhya. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=77cZuBunAGk

THE HIMALAYAN TALK: PALSH BISWAS FLAYS SOUTH ASIAN GOVERNM

Palash Biswas, lashed out those 1% people in the government in New Delhi for failure of delivery and creating hosts of problems everywhere in South Asia. http://youtu.be/lD2_V7CB2Is

Palash Biswas on BAMCEF UNIFICATION!

THE HIMALAYAN TALK: PALASH BISWAS ON NEPALI SENTIMENT, GORKHALAND, KUMAON AND GARHWAL ETC.and BAMCEF UNIFICATION! Published on Mar 19, 2013 The Himalayan Voice Cambridge, Massachusetts United States of America

BAMCEF UNIFICATION CONFERENCE 7

Published on 10 Mar 2013 ALL INDIA BAMCEF UNIFICATION CONFERENCE HELD AT Dr.B. R. AMBEDKAR BHAVAN,DADAR,MUMBAI ON 2ND AND 3RD MARCH 2013. Mr.PALASH BISWAS (JOURNALIST -KOLKATA) DELIVERING HER SPEECH. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oLL-n6MrcoM http://youtu.be/oLL-n6MrcoM

Imminent Massive earthquake in the Himalayas

THE HIMALAYAN TALK: PALASH BISWAS CRITICIZES GOVT FOR WORLD`S BIGGEST BLACK OUT

THE HIMALAYAN TALK: PALASH BISWAS CRITICIZES GOVT FOR WORLD`S BIGGEST BLACK OUT

THE HIMALAYAN TALK: PALASH BISWAS TALKS AGAINST CASTEIST HEGEMONY IN SOUTH ASIA

Palash Biswas on Citizenship Amendment Act

Mr. PALASH BISWAS DELIVERING SPEECH AT BAMCEF PROGRAM AT NAGPUR ON 17 & 18 SEPTEMBER 2003 Sub:- CITIZENSHIP AMENDMENT ACT 2003 http://youtu.be/zGDfsLzxTXo

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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

NDA-Left to coordinate in Parliament over price rise, black money!Ideology makes No Difference in Floor adjustment.But this combination has Nothing to Do against Reforms drive meant for Economic Ethnic Cleansing of the Ninety Nine percent Non Brahami


NDA-Left to coordinate in Parliament over price rise, black money!Ideology makes No Difference in Floor adjustment.But this combination has Nothing to Do against Reforms drive meant for Economic Ethnic Cleansing of the Ninety Nine percent Non Brahamin Non Aryan Majority Population.The Parliamentary Nautankee is simply an Exercise to Appeased Vote Bank Equations. Mulnivasi Bahujan Never do understand this and are moved by the Gallery Show!


I will continue the 'drama' of mingling with poor: Rahul Gandhi


Corporate honchos granted bail in 2G scam by SC!2G accused can't be jailed indefinitely: Supreme Court, Kanimozhi, 5 others file fresh bail plea in HC!The Delhi High Court today dismissed a plea seeking a direction to CBI to probe the alleged roles of Reliance ADAG chairman Anil Ambani, Tata Group chief Ratan Tata in the 2G spectrum allocation scam case, saying the apex court was "seized of the matter".


And see, who is speaking for smoothe Functioning of the Parliament? The Man who launched AFRESH Anti Reservation Anti Constition Movement with latest Brand Equity Anti Corruption. Provided, the Gandhian is so serious about Corruption, why does ne NOT voice against Free Market Economy, FDI Raj, LPG Mafia Rule or Economic Ethnic Cleansing?Why does he keeps silence on Occupy Wall Street? Why ? Anna Team may OCCUPY the DALAL Street to protest the Sensex economy, the Root of Corruption! But After Parliament washout, Anna Hazare calls for healthy debates!

No respite in Rupee decline,ends at all-time closing low of 52.35,US dollar ends higher against Rupee!The Economy is Destroyed! Taxation is Overloaded against majorty of the Population. Eighty Five percent Non Aryan Mulnivasi Bahujan. The Ruling class is EXEPTED of Taxation. They enjoy Bailout and Fore Gone Taxes. Foreign Debt and Foreign Capital run the Bottomless Economy. The ideologue Marxists could NOT Resist this during all these six decades. Nad now,External debt rises to USD 317 bn!

The root of Infaltion and Price Rise is the Manusmriti Hegemony and all Brahaminical Parties do defend it in Parliamentary Politics thanks to Poona Pact!! Foreign Direct Investment in India surged by 41 per cent to USD 22.5 billion during the January-September period this year, notwithstanding uncertain global economic environment.

Govt, BJP reach truce, parliament standoff set to end tomorrow!


Baba Ramdev threatens to launch agitation in poll-bound states


The government is likely to approve 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail on Thursday, a decision that will allow global mega chains like Walmart, Tesco and Carrefour to open outlets in India.
Increasing the foreign investment (FDI) ceiling to 100 per cent from the present 51 per cent in single-brand retail is also on the agenda of the the Union Cabinet meeting scheduled for tomorrow, sources said.

Indian Holocaust My Father`s Life and

Time - SEVEN HUNDRED SIXTY SIX

Palash Biswas

http://indianliberationnews.com/

http://indianholocaustmyfatherslifeandtime.blogspot.com/





http://basantipurtimes.blogspot.com/

The government is likely to approve 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail on Thursday, a decision that will allow global mega chains like Walmart, Tesco and Carrefour to open outlets in India.
Increasing the foreign investment (FDI) ceiling to 100 per cent from the present 51 per cent in single-brand retail is also on the agenda of the the Union Cabinet meeting scheduled for tomorrow, sources said.

Most of the ministries, including the finance and the textiles, are in favour of the industry ministry's proposal to open the politically-sensitive sector to foreign players and the Cabinet will take a final call, they said.


Earlier, a panel headed by cabinet secretary Ajit Kumar Seth had recommended 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail with certain riders, like minimum investment of USD 100 million and local sourcing.

The decision on the issue is pending for over two-years as Opposition parties are against foreign investment in this sector. The USD 600 billion segment is dominated by small kirana (mom & pop) shops.

Opposition have expressed concerns that allowing majors global retailers would lead to unemployment among the unorganised sector.
The government had opened the single-brand retail for FDI way back in 2006 and ever since 60 foreign players have entered the country in joint venture with local firms. Several global retailers are waiting in the wings to enter India's multi-brand retail segment.

The Cabinet is likely to take up the new Companies Bill tomorrow, as differences over market regulator Sebi's jurisdictions have been ironed out between the Finance Ministry and Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA).

Cabinet approval on the Companies Bill, 2009 was pending as the Finance Ministry and MCA failed to reach a common ground on powers to be delegated to the Securities and Exchanges Board of India (Sebi) in case of regulatory overlaps.

Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Corporate Affairs Minister Veerappa Moily were asked to discuss and iron out issues. The ministers have come to a consensus on the issue, sources in the know said.

According to them, the Finance Ministry and Sebi have sought review of the provisions which conflicted with the Sebi Act. Apparently, it has been decided that Sebi's view will be upheld in cases where jurisdictions conflict.

The Bill has already been vetted by the Parliamentary Standing Committee of Finance and also by different ministries.

For the first time, the Bill has introduced ideas like Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), class action suits and a fixed term for independent directors.

Among other things, it also proposes to tighten laws for raising money from the public. The Bill also seeks to prohibit any insider trading by company directors or key managerial personnel by treating such activities as a criminal offence.

Further, it has proposed that companies should earmark 2 per cent of the average profit of the preceding three years for CSR activities and make a disclosure to shareholders about the policy adopted in the process.

The Companies Bill, 2008, which lapsed with the dissolution of the 14th Lok Sabha, was re-introduced in August 2009.

*

Moneycontrol.com

Cabinet to discuss FDI in multi-brand retail on Thursday

Moneycontrol.com - ‎25 minutes ago‎


The cabinet on Thursday will discuss allowing 51% foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail and 100% in single-brand retail, a government spokeswoman said on Wednesday.

RelatedFDI »

DoT wants handsets, modem to come under new retail FDI normsHindu Business Line

Cabinet to consider 51 % FDI in multi-brand retail on ThursdayThe Hindu

See all 12 sources »



23/11/2011

India plans 10 new nuclear projects by 2017

New Delhi: Ten new nuclear power projects are planned during the 12th Five Year Plan (2012-17) period, the Lok Sabha was informed Wednesday.
However, no new nuclear power projects will be launched in the remaining period of 11th Five Year Plan ending March 2012, Minister of State in Prime Minister's Office V. Narayansamy said during question hour.
Besides, seven nuclear power reactors with a capacity of 5,300 MW are under construction, he said.
The announcement comes even as government faces opposition from civil society and NGOs over the Kudankulam nuclear plant in Tamil Nadu.
India presently has 19 nuclear power plants, which generate 4,560 MW of electricty.
Source: IANS

No respite in Rupee decline,ends at all-time closing low of 52.35

As expected,Govt, BJP reach truce, parliament standoff set to end tomorrow!


NDA-Left to coordinate in Parliament over price rise, black money!Ideology makes No Difference in Floor adjustment.But this combination has Nothing to Do against Reforms drive meant for Economic Ethnic Cleansing of the Ninety Nine percent Non Brahamin Non Aryan Majority Population.The Parliamentary Nautankee is simply an Exercise to Appeased Vote Bank Equations. Mulnivasi Bahujan Never do understand this and are moved by the Gallery Show!


Clearing the air on coordination among opposition parties in Parliament, BJP today said the NDA had reached an understanding with the Left parties on supporting each other unconditionally on issues of price rise and Indian Black money stashed abroad.
Both the Left parties and the BJP will again move an adjournment motion in Lok Sabha tomorrow on issues of price rise and black money. A similar motion, demanding suspension of Question Hour to discuss these two issues, will also be moved by the two in the Rajya Sabha tomorrow.

The Economy is Destroyed! Taxation is Overloaded against majorty of the Population. Eighty Five percent Non Aryan Mulnivasi Bahujan. The Ruling class is EXEPTED of Taxation. They enjoy Bailout and Fore Gone Taxes. Foreign Debt and Foreign Capital run the Bottomless Economy. The ideologue Marxists could NOT Resist this during all these six decades. Nad now,External debt rises to USD 317 bn!

The root of Infaltion and Price Rise is the Manusmriti Hegemony and all Brahaminical Parties do defend it in Parliamentary Politics thanks to Poona Pact!!
Foreign Direct Investment in India surged by 41 per cent to USD 22.5 billion during the January-September period this year, notwithstanding uncertain global economic environment.

The standoff between the government and BJP in the Lok Sabha appears set to end on Thursday when a discussion on an adjournament motion on the issue of black money takes place following an agreement reached between the two sides tonight.

The agreement was reached after the Leader of the Opposition Sushma Swaraj had a meeting with Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee.

Left parties, pressing for an adjournment motion on the issue of price rise, appeared to be not happy over the development and they could give their own adjournment motion on the issue.

This was because there was a feeling in the Left that BJP has agreed to the language of the motion, which is acceptable to the government.

Sushma also had telephonic talks with Left leaders on the issue.

Government sources said the Lok Sabha will have a discussion on the issue of price rise on Monday.
Sources said the government finally reached out to BJP after the stalemate in Parliament continued for the second day today with the opposition remaining adamant on seeking adjournment motions on price rise and blackmoney.


Corporate India can breathe easy. A proposal in the Companies Bill 2011 which made it mandatory for companies to set aside two percent of their outlay for corporate social responsibility activities has been 'amended' suitably taking the views of corporate honchos in to consideration. The bill which is likely to be tabled in the winter session of the parliament will now make disclosure of CSR spending mandatory and not the actual spending.
Minister for corporate affairs M Veerappa Moily who described this as a new innovative concept as far as corporate India is concerned, told reporters at a meet the press programme organised by D K Working Journalists Association here on Sunday that such a concept is not prevalent in corporate sector in the world. "Earmarking up to two percent for CSR would have immensely helped the local populace who benefit from CSR activities," he said.


During January-September 201O, the country had attracted Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) worth USD 15.97 billion.

Experts maintained that the government should further streamline policies and make the environment more conducive to FDI.

The sectors that attracted maximum FDI during the nine-month period include services (financial and non- financial), telecom, housing and real estate, and construction and power, according to the industry ministry's latest data.


Mauritius, Singapore, the US, the UK, the Netherlands, Japan, Germany and the UAE are the major investors in India.


The FDI inflows totalled USD 19.42 billion in 2010-11 financial year, down from USD 25.83 billion in 2009-10.


Recently, the government further liberalised the FDI regime, allowing overseas investment in bee-keeping and share-pledging for raising external debt.


Besides, the conditions for FDI in construction of old-age homes and educational institutions have been eased. These will not be subject to the minimum and built-up area, capitalisation and lock-in period norms as applicable for the construction activities.

India's external debt rose by 3.4 per cent in the first three months of the current fiscal to touch USD 316.9 billion as on June 30, 2011, on account of an increase in commercial borrowings and trade credit, Parliament was informed today.

"The increase in external debt was largely on account of rise in commercial borrowings and short-term trade credits," Minister of State for Finance Namo Narain Meena said in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha yesterday.

On March 31, 2011, the external debt was about USD 306.5 billion.

The prudent external debt management policy being followed by the government lays emphasis on monitoring of long and short term debt, raising concessional sovereign loans and regulating ECBs, the minister said.

"As a result, the external debt to GDP ratio has declined from 21.1 per cent in 2001-02 to 17.3 per cent in 2010-11," Meena said.

As per the data, India's sovereign debt stood at USD 55.23 billion in 2010-11, up from USD 51.81 billion in the previous year.

The quick estimates for 2011-12 put the sovereign debt on government account at about USD 62.39 billion.

Nomura India has said despite recent massive slump in FDI inflows, the country remains the hottest investment destination in the world after Chinaand that inflows will return to the pre-crisis peak by early 2012.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows plunged 25 percent in April-January period to USD 17 billion Y-o-Y. The figure was more alarming in January when it nosedived 48 percent to USD 1.04 billion.

Attributing the recent decline to primarily global factors, Nomura India Vice-President and economist Sonal Varma said following the 2008 crisis, other emerging markets too saw sharp drop in FDI inflows but picked up steam after two years unlike India.

"Of the USD 12-billion decline in FDI inflows between 2008 and 2010, around 60 per cent was due to weak inflows into services spaces like computer software and hardware, financial services, banking, and construction," Varma said.

"The sharp drop in inflows into banking and other financial services is unsurprising as the crisis led firms to restructure operations. As a result, share of infrastructure in total FDI inflows rose to 24.7 per cent in 2010 from 16.3 per cent in 2007 and that of manufacturing rose to 32.1 per cent from 19.6 percent, despite an fall in the absolute numbers in FY11," he said in his report.

While globally, overcapacity, credit crunch, fragile growth and increased risk aversion led multinational corporations to curtail investment, locally, the environment sensitive policies pursued appear to have affected the investor sentiments, he said.

"Delay in framing a land acquisition law has also hurt. In addition, the country's cost-competitiveness may have taken a hit due to deteriorating quality of infrastructure, elevated inflation, a skilled labour shortage, rising wage costs and corruption," Varma pointed out.

Other factors like tax issues (income tax notice on Vodafone), delay in USD 9.6-billion Carin-Vedanta deal, many corruption cases are also said to be keeping off investors.

Shedding some fresh light into the fall, Varma said in fact the fall is not as hard it is being made out to be as the decline in more of a definitional issue than actual.

Quoting an ISID research report, he said, under 50 per cent of FDI inflows between September 2004 and December 2009 can be termed as FDI in the purest sense. The rest bear a greater resemblance to volatile portfolio flows, these comprise round-tripping, and private equity/venture capital/ hedge fund related inflows.

"For instance, only 13 per cent of inflows into realty and construction can be termed FDI, which helps explain why measured FDI inflows into this sector dropped sharply after the crisis."

Mauritius, Singapore, US, Britain, the Netherlands, Japan, Germany and the UAE are the major investors here.

In April-January 2009-10, USD 22.9 billion flew in as FDI. In FY10, it declined to USD 25.88 billion from USD 27.33 billion in the previous fiscal. The sectors that attracted FDI include services (financials and non-financial), telecoms, housing, realty, construction and power during this period.

Apart from the services, said Varma, the other areas that saw sharp dip include realty, infrastructure and manufacturing, with the deepest fall being into the real estate space.

At present, share of FDI as percentage of GDP is a measly 2.5 per cent in the country. With a view to increase this, and to discourage hot money inflows by way of FII funds, Government recently scrapped a set of cumbersome norms that entailed the foreign partner first getting the NOC from his domestic JV partner if it wanted to enter into a similar business with a new partner.

Meanwhile,Five top corporate executives, accused in the 2G spectrum allocation scam, were today granted bail by the Supreme Court raising the hopes of other accused including former Telecom Minister A Raja and DMK MP Kanimozhi, who have been jail for more than six months.On the other hand,the Delhi High Court today dismissed a plea seeking a direction to CBI to probe the alleged roles of Reliance ADAG chairman Anil Ambani, Tata Group chief Ratan Tata in the 2G spectrum allocation scam case, saying the apex court was "seized of the matter".

"Without going into the merits of the case, we refuse to entertain the petition on the ground that the apex court is seized of the matter. The petition is dismissed," a Bench headed by Acting Chief Justice A K Sikri said.


The Bench, also comprising Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw, refused to comment on the maintainability of the plea of Delhi-based scribe M Furquan saying, "It is a matter of common knowledge that the case is being heard by the special CBI judge on the direction of the Supreme Court."


The counsel for CBI opposed the scribe's plea saying chargesheets have been filed and the trial has already commenced after framing of charges against the 17 accused.


The journalist, in his plea, alleged the agency was "deliberately" suppressing "facts" against Ambani, Ratan Tata and corporate lobbyist Niira Radia in the case.


Earlier, a single judge-bench of Justice Ajit Bharihoke had termed the petition of the scribe as "rubbish" and forced him to withdraw it.


Furquan had also sought to implead as accused DMK chief M Karunanidhi's wife Dayalu Ammal, saying she held 60 per cent stake in Kalaignar TV, an alleged recipient of Rs 200 bribe from beneficiary telecom firm, Swan Telecom.


Earlier, the trial court had also rejected the plea and slapped a fine of Rs 10,000 on Furquan for filing the "frivolous" petition.


In the first bail in the 2G case, a bench comprising justices GS Singhvi and H L Dattu directed the release of the five corporate honchos--Unitech Limited MD Sanjay Chandra, Swan Telecom Director Vinod Goenka and Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani group executives Gautam Doshi, Hari Nair and Surendra Pipara.

The prolonged detention of the accused with Raja alone being behind the bars for more than 10 months had drawn criticism from jurists, who felt that denial of bail was not not proper.

".....But at the same time, right to bail is not not to be denied merely because of the sentiments of the community against the accused," the bench said in a 63-page verdict.

Hours after the apex court judgement, Special CBI Judge OP Saini ordered their release from Tihar Jail after all the five accused furnished a bond with the two solvent sureties, each of the sum of Rs Five lakh.
Buoyed by the judgement, Kanimozhi and five others approached the Delhi High Court for advancing the hearing on theirbail plea which is scheduled for hearing on December 1.

Apart from Kanimozhi, others who have pleaded for bail are former Telecom Secretary Siddhartha Behura, DMK-run Kalaignar TV MD Sharad Kumar and Bollywood filmmaker Karim Morani, Asif Balwa and Rajiv Agarwal, directors of Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetables Pvt Ltd.

Former Telecom Minister A Raja, who is the main accused in the scam, has so far not approached any court for the bail.

No respite in Rupee decline,ends at all-time closing low of 52.35,US dollar ends higher against Rupee!
Falling for the eight day in a row, the Indian rupee today ended at 52.35/36-- its all-time closing low-- against the US dollar amid continuing signs of captial outflows and steep fall in stock markets.

The US dollar ended higher against therupee at Rs 52.35/36 per dollar but the Pound Sterling turned lower at Rs 81.56/58 per pound at the close of the Interbank Foreign Exchange market(Forex) here today.


The Following are the Interbank Forex and RBI rates: (In Rs Per Unit) Unit Interbank RBI Reference US Dollar 52.35/36 US Dollar Rs 52.1005 Pound Sterling 81.56/58 Euro Rs 70.0732 Euro 70.15/17 Japanese Yen (100) 67.85/87.

Dealers said persistent capital outflows amid late dollar buying by importers kept the rupee under pressure despite suspected Reserve Bank of India(RBI) intervention.

Referring to the decline in the value of rupee, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi said, "RBI is closely monitoring the situation and will do the needful as required."

In a see-saw trade at the Interbank Foreign Exchange(Forex) market, the domestic unit opened weaker. However, dollar selling by non-PSU banks as well as suspected intervention by the central bank helped the rupee to bounced back to the day's high of 51.70.

The Reserve Bank's intervention, however, could not be officially ascertained.

The rupee had yesterday plunged to its life-time low of 52.73 intra-day.

Meanwhile, the BSE benchmark index Sensex fell to over two-year low of 15,699.97 today as investors sold heavily ahead of the settlement in this month's derivative contracts amid worries of slow growth in global economies.

"As non-PSU banks entered the forex market, Indian rupee traded strong in first half. However, in the second half it traded weak, mainly taking cues from global markets where dollar quoted strong against the major currencies. Local equities closed down by over two per cent which also weakened the rupee," Alpari Financial Services (Indai) CEO Pramit Brahmbhatt said.

At the fag end, the rupee came under pressure again on dollar demand from importers, mainly oil refiners, to meet their month-end needs and touched a low of 52.60 before concluding weak at 52.35/36, down 6 paise from its last close.

FIIs sold shares worth USD 623.99 million in last six days since November 15.

This Left NDA Floor Exercise, however,is likely to lead to disruptions and adjournments of the two Houses tomorrow as well. Two days of the winter session have been spent without any transaction of business.

Pandemonium over varied issues by ruling party and opposition members in both houses of Parliament on Wednesday resulted in the loss of a second day of the winter session and another Rs 2 crore going down the drain.   In the first two days of this session, Parliament has

related stories

already lost about 17 hours work and over Rs 4 crore cumulatively, considering that rough estimates says each hour of Parliament's work costs the national exchequer Rs 25 lakh.
While the opposition National Democratic Alliance (NDA) boycot of home minister P Chidambaram in the Lok Sabha led to adjournments and loss of four work hours on Tuesday, an aggressive and united opposition again forced both houses of Parliament to adjourn without transacting much business for the second day on Wednesday.
Lok Sabha members from the Telangana region in Andhra Pradesh, including from the ruling Congress, flashed placards demanding a separate state and Shiv Sena members sought a hike in cotton rates for farmers in Maharashtra .
The Left parties have been asking Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar to consider their adjournment motion on price rise even as the government had agreed to have a discussion on inflation under rule 193 that doesn't entail voting.
The Rajya Sabha was also adjourned for the day after the suspension of question hour in the morning due to noisy protests.
Prime Miniser Manmohan Singh, ahead of the Parliament's sitting on Tuesday, expressed the hope that all political parties "realise that we have important legislation to discuss in the winter session" and that it runs smoothly.
The government has indicated it would like to complete the legislative business relating to bills on the Lokpal, whistle blowers protection, judicial accountability, pension fund, direct taxes, and goods and services tax bills in the winter session that concludes Dec 21.


And see, who is speaking for smoothe Functioning of the Parliament? The Man who launched AFRESH Anti Reservation Anti Constition Movement with latest Brand Equity Anti Corruption. Provided, the Gandhian is so serious about Corruption, why does ne NOT voice against Free Market Economy, FDI Raj, LPG Mafia Rule or Economic Ethnic Cleansing?Why does he keeps silence on Occupy Wall Street? Why ? Anna Team may OCCUPY the DALAL Street to protest the Sensex economy, the Root of Corruption! But After Parliament washout, Anna Hazare calls for healthy debates!

The washout of the first two days of the Winter session of Parliament did not escape the attention of Anna Hazare, who said today there should be "healthy" debates between Government and the Opposition.

Hazare, who has threatened to resume his agitation if the Lokpal Bill is not passed in the current session itself, also noted there are a lot of issues before Parliament.

"In the Parliament, healthy debates must happen between the Opposition and the Government," he told reporters at his native village in Maharashtra.
"New debates and discussions give birth to new ideas. Thorough debates on issues must take place for a strong and effective democracy to function," the 74-year-old anti-corruption crusader said.


Similar motions on the same issues were moved by the Left parties and the BJP today as well in both Houses of Parliament. BSP, which gives outside support to the UPA government, had also moved the same motions on price rise in both Houses today.
Asked if BJP-led NDA would support the Left parties even if the latter agree to a debate on price rise without voting (under Rule 193), Deputy Leader of BJP in Rajya Sabha S S Ahluwalia said, "The Left parties will move the motion on price rise. If they concede and agree for a debate without voting we have no objection."

The BJP expects similar support from the Left on the issue of Black money, an issue the party wants to rake up further after its leader L K Advani undertook a 38-day yatra across the country to highlight it.

"We are standing in support with the Left so that there is no breach in opposition unity," Ahluwalia said.
BJP sources maintained that the price rise issue is as dear to the party as to the Left, it agreed to support the latter as it is moving the adjournment motion on black money.

This opposition unity does not augur well for the government which is desperate to run the two Houses smoothly so that several pending Bills can be passed.
BJP quashed rumours that the government had reached out to it today to end the stalemate in Parliament. Sources said the government had held a luncheon meeting with the Left parties yesterday but since the latter got no assurance on holding the price rise debate under Rule 184 (which entails voting) till late evening, it forced an adjournment today.

Ahluwalia said the opposition wanted a debate on price rise though the issue has been discussed in Parliament earlier too as the government had failed in its promise made in the last session that it will take effective steps to check spiralling costs of commodities.

"Now Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia has accepted that there has been a mistake in making estimates and the government has failed in controlling prices," Ahluwalia said.

Similarly, on the issue of Black money the BJP leader said since France has recently shared with our government the names of Indian foreign account holders, it is important to discuss the matter and press for making these names public.

Baba Ramdev threatens to launch agitation in poll-bound states

Yoga guru Ramdev today threatened to launch a nationwide agitation against UPA, starting from five poll-bound states, if it did not take "decisive" steps to bring the Jan Lokpal Bill and repatriate black money stashed abroad in the winter session of Parliament.
In a letter shot off to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the yoga guru, who was bundled out of Delhi during his June agitation at Ramlila Maidan against corruption, underlined his demands and set a one-week deadline for being informed about the measures taken to address his concerns.
He said he was demanding that the Jan Lokpal bill be passed in the Winter session and efforts be made to bring back black money stashed abroad. He also said there was a need for change in the system.
"If the government does not take important and decisive steps on these three issues in the winter session, then I will be forced to organise agitations in the five poll-bound states, including Uttar Pradesh, and later extend it to other parts of the country," he told reporters while releasing copies of his letter to the Prime Minister.

No names before launch of prosecution: Finance Secretary R S Gujral on black money

AGRA: The government today said it cannot disclose the identity of persons involved in black money cases before initiating prosecution proceedings.


"The commitment is regarding secrecy. Secrecy has to be maintained. As and when prosecution proceedings are there, the information (will) come into the public domain before the courts," Finance Secretary R S Gujral told reporters here when asked whether the government would disclose the identity of 700 HSBC account holders in Switzerland, whose names were reportedly given by the French government to India.


As regards prosecution, he said it would be initiated by the Income Tax Department in appropriate cases.


Gujral further said that information about accounts in overseas banks would be shared with theEnforcement Directorate after initiation of prosecution proceedings.


"Once the information is available in the public domain, obviously they (Enforcement Directorate) can take action. But before the information is in the public domain, information cannot be shared even with the ED," Gujral added.


The Income Tax Department is probing a list of 700 Indians with accounts in Geneva-based banks after the government received information in this regard, reportedly from the French government.


However, the government has not disclosed the names of persons who were being probed by the Income Tax Department in connection with their unaccounted wealth in overseas bank accounts.

22 NOV, 2011, 09.32AM IST, RAJEEV DESHPANDE & PRADEEP THAKUR,TNN

Black money probe going nowhere as treaties render ED toothless

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NEW DELHI: Despite the political heat over black money accounts, prosecution of offenders seems distant as French and German authorities hold a veto over Indian income tax department sharing details of accounts and individuals with the Enforcement Directorate (ED).


Treaty conditions that allow India access to information on accounts held in HSBC Bank, Geneva, and at Liechtenstein in Germany, stipulate that Indian tax officials cannot share black money detail with agencies responsible for criminal investigation without clearance by source countries.


"Information cannot be shared with any other agency due to secrecy provision of the DTAA ( Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement) between India and Germany. We requested Germany to allow us to share the information with ED. However, the request is still under their consideration," the government recently informed Parliament's finance standing committee. Sources said the same is the case with France.


This means ED is a spectator more than a year after the Liechtenstein information reached India as it is unable to launch money laundering proceedings. This is despite the government acknowledging that hidden wealth could be the proceeds of "corruption, illegal arms, smuggling, narcotics, human trafficking, ponzi schemes and investor frauds". Another tranche of information from Germany is expected regarding Swiss accounts while the HSBC details have been available with India for over a month.


The finance ministry has promised to begin prosecution in several cases and was pressed hard on this by members of the standing committee who demanded to know whether the black money accounts will be treated as merely tax evasion cases or be considered criminal offences.


So far, the government has said probe in the case of 18 individuals holding accounts with LGT Bank in Liechtenstein have been completed, but proceedings seem restricted to penalty for concealing income. As foreign offshore accounts are also used for money related to illegal acts, prosecution under relevant laws is the next step for agencies.


While the government has consistently claimed names will become public once prosecution begins and matter reaches the courts, treaty conditions that information can be used only for tax purposes specified in the agreements make initiating action a difficult process. The government hopes that "if the litigation in these cases travels to ITAT or higher judicial forums, the names of these people will automatically come out in public".

More stories from this edition of Black Money


http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics/nation/black-money-probe-going-nowhere-as-treaties-render-ed-toothless/articleshow/10825735.cms

Government considering Nandan Nilekani's common software platform suggestion for PDS

UID Chairman Nandan Nilekani- headed task force's report on developing a common software platform for PDS for states is under the consideration of the government, Parliament was informed today.


The task force on reforms of PDS, constituted under the chairmanship of Nandan Nilekani, had submitted its report to Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on November 2, 2011, Food and Consumer Affairs Minister K V Thomas said in a written reply in Lok Sabha.

"The report of the task force is under consideration of the government", he said.


The report mentioned that a common software platform for PDS can be developed for all states with the flexibility to configure policies, prices and administrative structures, he said.


The report inter-alia also said the software will make it possible for state governments to decide on the choice to the beneficiaries in receiving their entitlements in kind (food/kerosene) or cash.


The task force observed that the software will also make it possible to provide a choice of the location from where the beneficiary can get his/her entitlement, he added.


Thomas said strengthening of Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) is a continuous process.


The government has regularly reviewed and has also issued instructions to states/Union Territories to strengthen functioning of TPDS by improving monitoring mechanism and vigilance, adoption of revised model citizen's charter and improving the efficiency of fair price shop operations among others, he said.


Detailed guidelines on end-to-end computerisation of PDS have been framed by the central government and an institutional mechanism has been set up at the national level in this regard, Thomas added.
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2G scam: Law minister downplays granting of bail to corporate honchos

Law Minister Salman Khurshid Wednesday downplayed the bail granted to five corporate honchos in the 2G case, saying it was part of the legal process.
He also said that the world will have a greater faith and confidence in Indian judicial system as the trial proceeds and decisions are taken and reasons for them are given.
"It's a part of the legal process. People are investigated, chargesheets are filed...such matters take time to get complete," he said.
He said as and when courts feel that bail should be granted, they grant bail.
"I think, that is the only context in which we can see this order," he said.
Khurshid said as the matter proceeds and decisions are taken, courts give out reasons for such orders. He said when courts give order and cite reasons for it, "I am sure, the world will have greater faith and confidence in Indian judicial system."
He was asked to comment on his statement that denying bail to corporates could affect investments in the country.




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22/11/2011

Congress to defend Chidambaram, Pranab may make statement

New Delhi: A meeting of the Congress core committee here Monday decided to put up a strong defence of Home Minister P. Chidambaram - whom the opposition has decided to boycott for his alleged role in the 2G spectrum scandal - on the opening day of parliament's winter session Tuesday, sources said.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Defence Minister A.K. Antony and other senior attended the meeting, which discussed the strategy for the month-long session, the sources added.
Mukherjee may make a statement Tuesday pointing out the issue was under the consideration of a Joint Parliamentary Committee and the opposition should wait before they make a judgement and press the demand for resignation of the minister, the sources said.
Earlier, in an escalation of confrontation, the NDA had decided to target Home Minister P Chidambaram by boycotting him and not allowing him to speak in Parliament, also holding him responsible for the 2G Scam.
In a sudden move, the BJP-led NDA demanded the resignation of Chidambaram, who was Finance Minister in UPA-I, and declared that they will boycott him till his resignation was accepted by the Prime Minister.
The NDA decision came on the eve of start of the Winter Session of Parliament at a meeting at senior BJP leader L K Advani's residence which was attended by leaders of BJP and allies Sharad Yadav, Manohar Joshi, Anant Geete, Naresh Gujral and Shivanand Tiwari.

On the opening day tomorrow, Advani will move an adjournment motion on the issue of black money in the Lok Sabha and the NDA has decided to support the Left motion on price rise.
"The then Finance Minister Chidambaram is equally responsible for the 2G Scam as the then Telecom Minister A Raja is. The Prime Minister has taken Raja's resignation, but didn't seek Chidambaram's resignation.
"Till P Chidambaram's resignation is accepted, we will boycott him in Parliament. We will not allow him to speak," said S S Ahluwalia, deputy leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha.
The NDA decision will be a repeat of what the Congress did to George Fernandes after his reinstatement as Defence Minister in the Vajpayee-government on the Tehelka arms expose.
At that time, the Congress members would walk out of the House whenever Fernandes would rise to speak.
When asked if the NDA MPs will stage a walkout when Chidambaram speaks in Parliament, Ahluwalia said, "No. Why should we walk out. We will not allow him to speak."
The BJP has been attacking Chidambaram on 2G issue and has been demanding that CBI question him on spectrum allotment issue, holding that the decision was taken when he was Finance Minister.
Significantly, the BJP leader also claimed that both the Left and the NDA will support each other's motions on price rise and black money in Parliament.
"We have talked to each other on this issue and decided that both will support each other's motions. The opposition will present itself unitedly on the motions," Ahluwalia told reporters.
However, sources in the CPI-M said they were not aware of any mutual agreement between the NDA and the Left, as whatever assurance has been given to BJP leaders may have been given by CPI leader Gurudas Dasgupta. The CPI-M leaders felt that it would be normal to expect the NDA to support the adjournment motion on price rise, to be brought by the Left.

Besides, the NDA will also raise some issues pertaining to rural India during the winter session of Parliament. These include the suicides by cotton farmers in Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra, the shortage and black marketing of fertilisers and the plight of paddy farmers in the absence of adequate procurement.
Ahluwalia said the NDA will also raise the issue of FDI in retail sector, which he charged the government of pushing through despite the Parliamentary Committee opposing it.

Source: IANS/PTI
22/11/2011

Chidambaram in eye of parliament storm, houses adjourned

Parliament got off to a stormy start Tuesday with opposition protests against Home Minister P. Chidambaram forcing adjournment of the Lok Sabha on the first day of the winter session.
The lower house was plunged into chaos soon after the session opened, with opposition MPs disregarding Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's appeal for calm.
The opposition's target was Chidambaram, for his alleged links to the 2G spectrum corruption scandal when he was finance minister from 2004 to 2008. He was prevented from speaking in the Lok Sabha.
As members assembled, Speaker Meira Kumar made obituary references to ex-members, including former union minister Vasant Sathe, who died in the past few months.
Newly-elected member Kuldeep Bishnoi of the Haryana Janhit Congress was also sworn in.
But when the speaker wanted question hour taken up, opposition members were on their feet raising various issues.
The first question of the day was to be answered by Chidambaram, who is the target of the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA).

NDA had vowed to boycott Chidambaram in parliament and prevent him from speaking in the house.
As Chidambaram got up to table the written reply of a question on Maoist violence, BJP members shouted him down. He sat back silently without reacting to the opposition's behaviour.
Before the two houses met, Manmohan Singh appealed for peace to allow parliament to function for the winter session which is expected to debate key bills, including the anti-graft Lokpal bill.
"I sincerely hope that all political parties will realise that we have some very important pieces of legislation which are going to be presented in this session, and our country's sustained development and prosperity demands that many of those bills should be converted as acts of parliament," Manmohan Singh told reporters.
"As far as the boycott (of Chidambaram) is concerned, I sincerely hope that the political parties will resist any such temptation. There is virtually no case for a boycott of the type that has been talked about in the newspapers," he added.
The BJP-led combine wants Manmohan Singh to ask Chidambaram to resign. Chidambaram refused a comment on the opposition strategy and silently walked out of parliament house when journalists sought his reaction.
The home minister was backed by his cabinet colleague, Law Minister Salman Khurshid. "I do not think there is any objective ground for the boycott of Chidambaram," Khurshid told reporters.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister P.K. Bansal regretted the opposition protests saying they were not allowing discussion on crucial issues like price rise.
"Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee had given notice for a statement (on inflation) today. The opposition should allow discussion, not block discussion," he said.
The first 20 minutes of the day were peaceful as Lok Sabha members listened to the speaker expressing grief over the loss of lives in a series of tragedies in India and elsewhere.
Chidambaram's was not the only issue that rocked the Lok Sabha. The proposed division of Uttar Pradesh, the demand for Telangana and the issue of price rise were also taken up by opposition MPs.
Amid the ruckus, the Lok Sabha was adjourned till 12 noon and then, as the din continued, for the entire day.
The Rajya Sabha was adjourned to mourn the death of two members, Ram Dayal Munda and Silvius Condpan.

Source: IANS

Complete Coverage: Manmohan Singh
Complete Coverage: Chidambaram
Complete Coverage: National Democratic Alliance
Complete Coverage: Lokpal Bill
Complete Coverage: Inflation
Complete Coverage: Telangana
21/11/2011

Ishrat Jahan 'encounter' fake: SIT report

Ahmedabad: The Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the 2004 Ishrat Jahan encounter case has come to the conclusion that the Ahmedabad girl and three others were killed in a fake encounter.
The SIT placed its findings in a report before the Gujarat High Court today.
Following the report, the high court ordered a fresh FIR against the police officers concerned.
The SIT also said the four were killed prior to the date of the encounter on June 15, 2004.
19-year-old Ishrat, Javed Sheikh alias Pranesh Pillai, Amjad Ali Rana and Zeeshan Johar were allegedly killed in a police encounter in Ahmedabad on June 15, 2004. The Gujarat police had claimed that Ishrat was a Lashkar-e-Taiba operative.
The police had justified the encounter by saying the four were on a mission to kill Chief Minister Narendra Modi.
Source: PTI
FACTBOX: India's winter session of parliament
Reuters
New Delhi, November 22, 2011
First Published: 14:09 IST(22/11/2011)
Last Updated: 14:14 IST(22/11/2011)
As India's boom gives way to gloom, the government is banking on a brief winter session of parliament that started on Tuesday to kickstart its long-stalled agenda of economic reforms. India's parliament is a rowdy place frequently adjourned by jeering and walkouts, so prospects are slim
for much progress on the more than 50 bills to be considered in the month-long session. Here is some of the proposed legislation:
Anti-corruption Bill
Could be passed. Anti-corruption activist Anna Hazare galvanized middle-class anger against venal public officials with a hunger strike in August. All parties say they support creating a new anti-graft ombudsman, but wrangling over the details could slow things down.
The 74-year-old Hazare has been weakened by allegations of financial misdeeds by his top aides but maintains a strong presence in the political scene. He threatens a new hunger strike if Prime Minister Manmohan Singh does not hasten steps to create a strong citizen's ombudsman, or Lokpal.
Food security Bill
Unlikely to be passed. The food security bill, promoted by Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi, aims to expand the supply of subsidised grain to almost two-thirds of India's 1.2 billion people, a plan that if approved may hurt government finances but help secure voter support.
The government plans to introduce the bill in this session but it is unlikely to be passed until next year.
Expected to cost $20.7 billion annually, the law could also give the government a better idea of how much grain India could export after maintaining comfortable buffer stocks.
It seeks to expand substantially an existing food subsidy scheme that covers about 180 million of India's poorest people who receive about 4 million tonnes of grain every month through licensed "fair price shops".
Land mining Bill
Unlikely to be passed this session. The proposed land mining bill will enable funding of schools, hospitals and roads using profits and royalties from unwilling mining firms.
Despite industry's grumbles, the bill clarifies the rules. It could kickstart stalled projects blocked by protests and broaden rural support for the government.
The bill calls on coal miners to share a maximum 26 percent of their profits with communities in their area and for other miners to pay an amount equivalent to royalties. The government hopes to double revenue from mining royalties if the bill becomes law, from 40 billion rupees ($817 million) now.
The bill has been watered down under pressure from industry.
Initially the proposal said all miners should give 26 percent of profits to local communities where land acquisition is a sensitive matter and many oppose natural resources being exploited by outsiders.
India's mining sector is the source of some of the country's biggest corruption scandals affecting top regional leaders of India's main opposition party.
Pension Bill
Could be passed. The cabinet approved foreign direct investment of up to 26 percent in the pension sector on Wednesday, setting in motion a key reform initiative in the financial sector after years of delays.
The decision needs parliament's go-ahead to become law, and will allow global players access to roughly $12 billion worth of assets, a figure expected to grow rapidly as more people join the workforce of Asia's third largest economy.
The government reintroduced the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority Bill in March this year, after which it was sent to a committee on finance. The panel submitted a report in August with some suggestions after which the government decided to set the amount of foreign investment in the sector at 26%.
The main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party supports pension reforms, but has vowed to disrupt parliament in the session, which could stall all the planned reforms.
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23 NOV, 2011, 05.12AM IST,

Should Parliament set FDI in pensions?

It should be set by the executive

D Swarup, Member-Convener, Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission

Government has done well to allow 26% foreign equity holding in the pension sector and also to keep foreign direct investment (FDI) ceiling outside the PFRDA Bill.

The decision is significant on two counts: one, it is a signal that foreign partnerships in the pension sector are welcome; and two, the flexibility to modify the FDI cap at any time in future has been retained by the executive. The example to follow with regard to the FDI policy should not be that of the insurance sector (where the FDI limit is stipulated in law), but that of all other sectors where it is decided by the executive, as it should be.

The legislative framework in our country is that there is a primary law that lays down the principles and macro policy objectives, and then there are rules framed by the government under the provisions of that law. Finally, there are regulations made by the sector regulator.

In this scheme of things, FDI limit should not fall within the scope of the primary law, but should be within the scope of subordinate laws. In any case, Parliament retains control, as rules and regulations are required to be placed in the Parliament, and can be debated, thereby influencing government policy.

Keeping FDI cap outside the law will also help in providing a dynamic and easy policy instrument to the government to address several key issues such as increasing the availability of long-term funds for infrastructure projects, encouraging capital inflow from overseas to stabilise capital markets and also promoting financial inclusion. It will also provide financial and human resources for spreading consumer education, and increase the awareness for retirement savings.

To further these objectives, it would, in fact, be desirable to increase the FDI limit in the pension and insurance sectors to at least 49%. There appears to be no overwhelming reason as to why the FDI limit in pension and insurance sectors should be limited to 26%, when in the rest of the financial sector, it is higher than even 49%. Government could also consider allowing pension funds to invest a portion of their corpus overseas for better returns and risk containment.
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/opinion/et-debate/should-parliament-set-fdi-in-pensions/articleshow/10837126.cms
21 NOV, 2011, 03.41AM IST, NISHANTH VASUDEVAN,ET BUREAU

Market pins hopes on easier FDI rules in retail, aviation & pension during upcoming winter session of parliament

EDITORS PICK


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MUMBAI: Investors, weary of the eurozone crisis and domestic economic growth concerns dragging down the stock markets in recent weeks, have something else to look forward to this week: the Parliament's winter session, which is expected to decide upon laws to allow FDI in retail, aviation and pension sectors. Investors are hoping the government will push through these decisions in this session starting Tuesday to dispel a perception that slow policy-making is hurting India's economic growth.

"The decisions in the winter session of the Parliament are going to be crucial for the market. More than anything, it will restore the confidence of investors in India especially when there are worries about policy paralysis," said Ritesh Jain, head-investments, Canara Robeco Asset Management.

Financial markets worldwide will closely watch the decision of the US' so-called super committee, which has time till Wednesday to strike a deal that will reduce the economy's budget deficits. Analysts anticipate a decline in stock prices if the committee is unable to agree on the deal as this situation heightens the risk of sovereign downgrades.

"A failure of the committee to propose, or Congress to pass, a package would further elevate the amount of fiscal policy uncertainty weighing on the economy in 2012," said Troy Davig of Barclays Capital in a note. Investors will also watch key US economic readings including Q3 GDP, October home sales and jobless claims to confirm whether recent signs of rebound are sustainable.

At home, volatility could heighten in the run-up to the expiration of the November F&O contracts on Thursday. Mid- and small-cap shares may continue to wilt under selling pressure, as investors trim their holdings on worries higher interest rates and a slowing economy could squeeze earnings.
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/markets/analysis/market-pins-hopes-on-easier-fdi-rules-in-retail-aviation-pension-during-upcoming-winter-session-of-parliament/articleshow/10810241.cms

Former bureaucrats, bankers likely to be on oil PSU boards
The government is likely to appoint former Home Secretary GK Pillai, former Foreign secretary Shyam Saran and former SBI Chairman O P Bhatt and several other bureaucrats as independent director on the boards of oil PSUs.

Sources said Pillai has been shortlisted for Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) board, while Saran has been chosen for Indian Oil Corp (IOC) board.

For the three vacancies in Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), former Expenditure Secretary Susma Nath, Bhatt and IIM-A Director S K Barua have been shortlisted.

The Reserve Bank of India's former Deputy Governor Shyamala Gopinath and Nath will share the board of IOC with Saran.

Gopinath, along with former Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) Secretary, R P Singh, former Minority Affairs Secretary Vivek Malhotra and retired Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) Bank of Baroda Anil K Khandelwal have been chosen forGAIL.

For HPCL, former Revenue Secretary P V Bhide, IIM-A Professor, G Raghuram and Canara Bank CMD A C Mahajan have been recommended besides Pillai.

Sources said names have been approved by government head hunter public enterprise selection board (PSEB) and after the approval from the oil ministry have been forwarded to cabinet committee on appointment (ACC) for formal go-ahead.

ACC is headed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and also comprises Home Minister P Chidambaram.
Governor, not CM has final word on AFSPA: Law Ministry
The debate on who will have the final word on lifting the controversial AFSPA from some areas of Jammu and Kashmir intensified with the Union Law Ministry saying the Governor can overrule the recommendation of the state government.

Reversing its stand, the Law Ministry has informed the Union Government that Governor N N Vohraenjoys the power to overrule any decision of the Omar Abdullah government for revoking the Armed Forces Special Powers Act(AFSPA) in the border state.

The Law Ministry's stand is based on the legal opinion given by Attorney General Ghulam Vahanvati in which he is understood to have said that Governor can exercise discretion according to Section 3 of the AFSPA and that he is "entitled" to keep in mind the will of Parliament.

Official sources said today that the opinion of the Law Ministry on November 18 came after the Union Home Ministry was not satisfied with its earlier opinion which is believed to have stated that the Governor has to act on the advice of the Council of Ministers.

The Home Ministry is learnt to have asked the Law Ministry to seek a fresh opinion from the top law officer of the government.

Both the opinions are based on the interpretation of the provisions of the AFSPA, the sources said.

The partial lifting of AFSPA in J and K is at the centre of a raging debate with Omar pressing for it while the Army has voiced serious reservations.

Omar has argued that his ministers were "authorised to make a recommendation to the Governor who then acts on the basis of that recommendation".

According to Omar, he had the authority to withdraw the law from the state.

Giving another dimenstion on who can take the final call, Defence minister A K Antony recently said a decision on revoking AFSPA can be taken only by the Unified Command Headquarters in J and K. Omar chairs the Unified Command.

"The CCS last year decided to leave it to the Unified Command to take a decision on partial withdrawal of AFSPA in Jammu and Kashmir," Antony had said.


Full coverage

Stormy start to Parliament's winter session, both Houses adjourned

Times of India - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

PTI | Nov 22, 2011, 12.39PM IST NEW DELHI: Winter session of Parliament on Tuesday got off to a stormy start with members raising issues ranging from better price for cotton to a separate Telangana and BJP protesting against home minister P Chidambaram ...

Parliament's winter session generates heat

Moneycontrol.com - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

Published on Tue, Nov 22, 2011 at 22:00 | Source : PTI Parliament's winter session today opened on a note of confrontation with the Opposition forcing adjournment of the Lok Sabha with a boycott of Home Minister P Chidambaram and on a number of issues ...

BJP says it does not want logjam in Parliament, opposed only to Chidambaram

NDTV - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

And if the government does not create problems then we can look forward to a very useful session of Parliament," said BJP leader Yashwant Sinha. On being asked if the BJP's anti-Chidambaram stance will not scuttle the current Winter Session of ...

Cong Core Group Meets Ahead of Parliament Session

Outlook - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

PTI | New Delhi | Nov 21, 2011 With the Opposition closing ranks on issues like price rise and corruption, Congress top brass including Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and party chief Sonia Gandhi today deliberated on the strategy for Winter session of ...

BJP challenges govt to discuss price-rise in Parliament

IBNLive.com - ‎6 hours ago‎

PTI | 04:11 PM,Nov 23,2011 New Delhi, Nov 23 (PTI) Attacking the government over the issue of price rise, BJP today said if the UPA dispensation was sincere in addressing the "burning issue" they should agree on a discussion in Parliament under a ...

SESSION-GOVT 2 LAST

IBNLive.com - ‎2 hours ago‎

Clearing the air on coordination among opposition parties in Parliament, BJP today said NDA had reached an understanding with the Left parties on supporting each other unconditionally on issues of price rise and Indian Black money stashed abroad....

At the AICC briefing, party spokesperson Manish Tewari

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

PTI | 08:11 PM,Nov 21,2011 said while politics is the life-blood of democracy, it alone should not become the business of democracy. Emphasising that the Winter session of Parliament is taking place at a time of important developments in the national ...

2G scam: NDA to target Chidambaram, boycott him in Parliament

Times of India - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

The NDA decision came on the eve of start of the Winter Session of Parliament at a meeting at senior BJP leader LK Advani's residence which was attended by leaders of BJP and allies Sharad Yadav, Manohar Joshi, Anant Geete, Naresh Gujral and Shivanand ...

Lok Sabha to discuss price rise tomorrow

Moneycontrol.com - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

Bansal's announcement is significant given the fact that earlier in the day the Left parties had declared that they are firm on taking up an adjournment motion in Parliament on spiralling prices. The Winter Session of Parliament had got off to a stormy ...

NDA leaders hold meeting at Advani's residence

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

... 21,2011 New Delhi, Nov 21 (PTI) The BJP-led NDA today held a meeting at the residence of LK Advani to chalk out its strategy to take on the government on a range of issues, including price rise and corruption, in the winter session of Parliament ...

Cong core group holds strategy session ahead of Par meet

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

... the Opposition closing ranks on issues like price rise and corruption, Congress top brass including Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and party chief Sonia Gandhi today deliberated on the strategy for Winter session of Parliamentbeginning tomorrow. ...

Left, other non-NDA parties oppose move to boycott Chidambaram

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

Earlier in the morning before the session began, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said there was no case for NDA's call to boycott the Home Minister in Parliament and hoped the opposition political parties would desist from any such move. ...

Lok Sabha may have a brief discussion on price rise on Monday

IBNLive.com - ‎2 hours ago‎

PTI | 08:11 PM,Nov 23,2011 New Delhi, Nov 23 (PTI) With an immediate resolution of the stalemate over the issue of adjournment motion not in sight, Lok Sabha is likely to have a short-duration discussion on price rise only on Monday. ...

PM defends Chidambaram, Congress poses indifferent

Business Standard - ‎22 hours ago‎

As both Houses were adjourned on the first day of the winter session with little or no discussion, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and a handful of colleagues defended Home Minister P Chidambaram who is facing a parliamentary 'boycott' by the main ...

Adjournment motion on rising prices: NDA may support Left

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

Coming on the opening day of the Winter Session, the Left motion on price rise would take the government to task on the regular hikes in the prices of petroleum products and demand reversal of the deregulation of petrol prices. During the session...

CONG-BJP 2

IBNLive.com - ‎4 hours ago‎

PTI | 06:11 PM,Nov 23,2011 Referring to BJP's decision to boycot Home Minister P Referring to BJP's decision to boycot Home Minister P Chidambaram in Parliament seeking his resignation on 2G issue, Alvi said it was an attempt to "create a wrong ...

No Case for Opposition Call to Boycott Chidambaram: PM

Siliconindia.com - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

There is virtually no case for a boycott of the type that has Can Google Music Beat the Popularity of iTunes and Amazon Cloud Player? been talked about in the newspapers," Singh told reporters outside Parliament on the opening day of theWinter Session ...

CPI not to back NDA's call to boycott Chidambaram

Times of India - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

We will expose him inside and outside Parliament," CPI leader Gurudas Dasgupta told reporters outside ParliamentHouse. Denying that his party had a "soft corner" for Chidambaram, he said as a member of the Joint ParliamentaryCommittee ( JPC) looking ...

Govt caught off-guard on NDA's move to boycott Chidambaram?

Moneycontrol.com - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

Published on Tue, Nov 22, 2011 at 21:00 | Source : PTI NDA's move to boycott Home Minister P Chidambaram in Parliament appears to have caught the Government off-guard. "It was unexpected. We did not anticipate it," a senior minister speaking on ...

Amid Protests, Parliament Adjourned

Siliconindia.com - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

By IANS, Monday, 21 November 2011, 23:36 Hrs New Delhi: The winter session of parliament began on a stormy note today as both houses were adjourned for the day, with the Lok Sabha enveloped by protests and bedlam. The Rajya Sabha was adjourned to mourn ...

Decision to boycott HM is 'destructive disruption': Cong

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

"As seasons come and go, when Parliament session comes, this disruptive tactics by BJP/NDA begin with monotonous and recurring regularity. "It is time they get out of this vicious cycle of disruptive disruptions and join hands at least a little in the ...

BJP fears people's anger against price rise may turn violent

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

What can we expect from such a government that on the first day of the session, they have tried to befool the people of the nation on the serious issue of price rise." Sinha, a former Finance Minister, alleged the government was simply ignoring the...

Khurshid backs Chidambaram as NDA decides to boycott him

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

In escalation of confrontation, the NDA earlier in the day decided to target Chidambaram by boycotting him and not allowing him to speak during the Winter session beginning tomorrow, holding him also responsible for the 2G scam.

Rejecting the Finance Minister's statement, Sinha said

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

PTI | 06:11 PM,Nov 22,2011 even though Congress members had voted in favour of a resolution passed in the Lok Sabha on August 4 that the government would initiate effective steps to control inflation, nothing has been done in this regard. ...

Parliament adjourned till tomorrow amid uproar

IBNLive.com - ‎9 hours ago‎

PTI | 01:11 PM,Nov 23,2011 New Delhi, Nov 23 (PTI) Government's efforts to avert a confrontation in Parliament today came to a naught with the Opposition pressing for adjournment motions on price rise and black money, paralysing the Winter session for ...

NDA leaders to submit declaration on assets

Middle East North Africa Financial Network - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

Attacking the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government over inflation and corruption, Advani indicated thewinter session of Parliament, starting on Tuesday, would be rancorous. "The yatra might have ended; until the black money ...

Parliament adjourned till noon amid uproar

IBNLive.com - ‎10 hours ago‎

PTI | 12:11 PM,Nov 23,2011 New Delhi, Nov 23 (PTI) Price rise, black money and Telangana were among a host of issues that disrupted Parliament on the second day of the Winter session today. Amid uproar, the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha were adjourned till ...

LD PARLIAMENT

IBNLive.com - ‎Nov 22, 2011‎

PTI | 09:11 PM,Nov 22,2011 New Delhi, Nov 22 (PTI) The opening day of winter New Delhi, Nov 22 (PTI) The opening day ofwinter session of Parliament was a washout on account of a range of issues including price rise and NDA boycott of Home Minister P ...

BJP-OPPOSITION 2 LAST

IBNLive.com - ‎4 hours ago‎

Ahluwalia said the opposition wanted a debate on price rise though the issue has been discussed in Parliament earlier too as the government had failed in its promise made in the last session that it will take effective steps to check spiralling costs...

2G row: NDA to boycott PC in Winter Session

Bellevision - ‎Nov 21, 2011‎

New Delhi, 22 November 2011: The BJP-led NDA has decided to boycott Home Minister P Chidambaram during the Winter Session of the Parliament till the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh forces him to resign. A decision to the effect was taken at a meeting of ...





21 NOV, 2011, 04.17AM IST, BAKUL CHUGAN TONGIA,ET BUREAU

PM seeking $1-tn investment in infrastructure; policy paralysis, shrinking profitability keep away investors

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Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is seeking a $1-trillion investment in Indian infrastructure, but investors are hardly responding. Indeed, they are turning their back on companies that help build ports, utilities and roads, thanks to policy paralysis and shrinking profitability.


The BSE's Capital Goods Index is among the worst performers, losing 38% this year, when the benchmark equity index, the Sensex, is down 20%. Order inflow for leaders such as Larsen & Toubro and state-owned Bharat Heavy Electricals (Bhel), which were flooding in the past few years has fallen to a trickle. Revenue and earnings estimates are sliced across the board.


"Order inflow has declined largely because investment sentiment is pretty low leading to deferment of several orders," said R Shankar Raman, chief financial officer at L&T, after releasing September quarter earnings. "There's also the situation of several policy initiatives pending for action," he said, cutting annual order forecast by two-third.


High prices, flip-flop on policies, soaring interest rates have put projects in jeopardy. Optimistic entrepreneurs, who borrowed recklessly in the past few years, are holding back investments, pulling industrial output growth. Investors are nursing losses where most stocks have lost a quarter of their value this year and dismal returns from past initial public offerings.


Reflecting the negative outlook for the sector, the valuations investors are willing to offer have shrunk.Bhel trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.5, down from 30 in November 2006. Engines maker Cummins India has fallen to 16 times, from 24 and for L&T, it is 18 from 34. Capital goods, a component the Index of Industrial Production, has fallen 6.8%.


Bhel recorded its lowest sales growth in the September quarter. For BGR Energy, sales fell in from a year-ago period. The company appears to have put cost efficiencies in place as its cost of raw materials to sales was the lowest for Q2 since 2007.


So was the case with L&T which witnessed a dip in sales growth and operating margins. However, unlike BGR, for L&T, the cost of raw material as a percentage to sales turned out to be highest ever since 2008 impacting its margins. The company also reported its lowest order intake for the September quarter since 2008.

*


That the fresh orders are hard to come by is reflected in the additional capacity generation in the power sector. Against the targeted additional capacity generation of 14,500 mega watts in 2009-10, only 66% was achieved. In 2010-11, it was just 57% of the 21,400 megawatt target. This fiscal, it is 42% of the targeted 17,700 mega watt so far.


The big challenges here are land acquisitions, environmental clearances and availability of coal. According to the ministry of coal, the Geological Survey of India has estimated India's coal reserves at more than 276,800 million tonne as of April 2010. This is about 12% higher than its estimates of coal reserves in January 2005. The country, however, produced just 532 million tonne of coal during 2009-10.

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/markets/analysis/pm-seeking-1-tn-investment-in-infrastructure-policy-paralysis-shrinking-profitability-keep-away-investors/articleshow/10810489.cms

Kanimozhi, 5 others file fresh bail plea in HC
DMK MP Kanimozhi and five others accused in the second generation (2G) spectrum allocation case on Wednesday moved the Delhi high court for early hearing of their bail applications. The move comes in the wake of the Supreme Court granting bail to five corporate executives co-accused in
the case -- Sanjay Chandra of Unitech Wireless, Vinod Goenka of Swan Telecom and Reliance Group's Gautam Doshi, Surendra Pipara and Hari Nair. With the five getting bail, nine people are now behind bars.
Besides Kanimozhi, Kalaignar TV chief Sharad Kumar, Cineyug Films' Karim Morani, Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetables Pvt Ltd directors Asif Balwa and Rajiv B. Agarwal, along with former telecom secretary Siddharth Behura have moved bail applications, slated for a Dec 1 hearing.
Their applications are likely to taken up on Thursday.
Citing the Supreme Court order, Kanimozhi stated in her plea that keeping her in custody for some more days would be a violation of her fundamental rights; she should be granted bail as even the investigating agency was not opposing her plea.
Earlier this month, the high court had issued notice to the CBI seeking its response on bail applications of the six by Dec 1.

I will continue the 'drama' of mingling with poor: Rahul Gandhi


With his political opponents dubbing his visits to villages andsharing of meals with the poor as a "drama", Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi Wednesday said in Uttar Pradesh that he would "continue the drama throughout the life".
"Every time whenever I mingle with the poor, visit their houses and share meals with them, senior leaders while sitting inside TV studios mock at me…They call such things a drama of Rahul Gandhi," he told a gathering in Uttar Pradesh's Bahraich district, some 240-km from Lucknow.
"If mixing with the people to understand their problems and issues affecting them is a drama, I will continue with this drama throughout my life. I am not here to win elections…I am not going any where...I am here to change Uttar Pradesh," Gandhi said while giving his third speech of the day.
Gandhi Tuesday embarked upon a five-day mass contact programme ahead of the state assembly polls next year.
"The opposition leaders call me a kid, who has no information about politics," said Gandhi.
"Yes, I don't have that much information, but in the seven years of my political career I have very well understood one thing that there is no question in the entire country for which the people of the country don't have an answer."
"The poor, the farmers and the labourers have an answer to every question," said Gandhi, citing the changes made by the central government for the implementation of a package for the weavers.
"A delegation of weavers only told us that the package should not be implemented through the help of co-operative societies that are governed by the state government. The weavers feared they would not get a single penny if the societies were involved for implementing the package," said Gandhi.
He said he would continue to strive for a better understanding of public problems.
"Those confining themselves to speeches only must start visiting homes of the poor, share food with them and water from their well even if they get an upset stomach," said Gandhi.
"I have suffered indigestion on several occasions, but I will continue to drink the water that is consumed by the public. After all, it helps in understanding the problems that the poor have to face every day," said Gandhi.
Accusing the Mayawati government of working against the farmers, Gandhi said: "Whenever a farmer shouts over the forcible land acquisition, he is shot at…Farmers were shot at in Tappal…Also in Bhatta-Parsaul…Atrocities were committed on the women there."
"It was the Congress party that fought for the farmers…Come what may, we would continue to do it…We will together work for an all-round development of the state," said Gandhi.
Owing to his hectic schedule, Gandhi preferred taking his lunch in the fields of a village in Bahraich.
"He had his lunch in the Dhanuali village under a tree…We all shared the meal in the sugarcane fields. Such an act by Rahul Gandhi clearly gives the message that he doesn't hesitate in experiencing the life of the common man," said Congress state spokesperson Akhilesh Pratap Singh.
2G accused can't be jailed indefinitely: Supreme Court

Granting bail to five corporate executives in the 2G spectrum scam case, the Supreme Court on Wednesday said that the offences they have been charged with were serious because of the huge losses suffered by the exchequer but they could not be kept in jail indefinitely. "We are conscious
of the fact that the accused are charged with the economic offences of huge magnitude. We are conscious of the fact that the offences alleged, if proved, may jeopardise the economy of the country," said the bench of Justice GS Singhvi and Justice HL Dattu.
However, "it is not in the interest of justice that the accused should be in jail for an indefinite period," it added.
Noting that the CBI has already completed its investigation and filed the chargesheet, the court said: "Therefore, their presence in the custody may not be necessary for further investigation", and thus they are entitled to the "grant of bail pending trial on stringent conditions in order to ally the apprehensions expressed by the CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation)."
The five executives -- Sanjay Chandra of Unitech Wireless, Vinod Goenka of Swan Telecom as well as Reliance Group's Gautam Doshi, Surendra Pipara and Hari Nair -- are among the 14 individuals accused in the case, led by former telecom minister A Raja.
The five executives had challenged the earlier judgment and common order of the Delhi high court May 23, rejecting their bail pleas due to the magnitude of the offence and gravity of the accusations against them.
Pronouncing the verdict, Justice Dattu said: "No doubt, the offence alleged against the appellants is a serious one in terms of alleged huge loss to the state exchequer, that, by itself  should not deter us from enlarging the appellants on bail when there is no serious contention of the respondent (CBI) that the accused, if released on bail, would interfere with the trial or tamper with the evidence."
"When the undertrial prisoners are detained in jail custody to an indefinite period, Article 21 of the constitution is violated," the court stressed.
"Every person, detained or arrested, is entitled to speedy trial, the question is whether  the same is possible in the present case," asked the court, noting that were 17 (14 people and three companies) accused, the statement of witnesses runs into several hundred pages and the documents on which reliance was being placed by the prosecution was voluminous.
"The trial may take considerable time and it looks to us that the appellants, who are in jail, have to remain in jail longer than the period detention, had they been convicted," said the judgement.

India | Updated Nov 23, 2011 at 05:07pm IST

Three train mishaps in 24 hours, over 20 injured

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New Delhi: The country has seen three train accidents in less than 24 hours in which atleast seven people have been killed and over 22 others injured. While the first tragedy took place on Tuesday in which seven people were killed in a fire on the Howrah-Dehradun Express in Jharkhand, a train derailed in Anantnag, Kashmir on Wednesday while another collided with a goods train in Odisha.
At least 20 people were injured on Wednesday when a train from Qazigund to Srinagar was derailed in Kulgam district, the first such incident since train services were launched in the Kashmir Valley in 2008.
The engine and two bogies of the train were derailed at Sedura village, 55 kms from Srinagar, as the driver overshot the intended station stop by nearly 200 metres, officials said.
Official sources said preliminary investigations have found that there was some problem with the brakes of the train.
Wednesday's mishap is the third involving railways since Tuesday. Seven persons were killed when two coaches of the Doon Express caught fire in Jharkhand on Tuesday.
Seven passengers, including an Australian woman, were charred to death when a fire broke out in two AC coaches of the Howrah-Dehradun Express in Giridih district early on Tuesday, with Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi stating that involvement of 'miscreants' cannot be ruled out.
In a separate incident, four passengers were injured on Wednesday when the Odisha-bound Samaeshwari Express collided with a goods train at Jharsuguda Station in Odisha.
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#Train Accidents #Doon Express #Anantnag #Train Collision #Odisha #Howrah-Dehradun Express #Jharkhand #Dinesh Trivedi
http://ibnlive.in.com/news/three-train-mishaps-in-24-hours-over-20-injured/205078-3.html

Tendulkar poverty line not to be used: Govt
The poverty line as computed by the Tendulkar Committee estimates is not to be used for defining segments that will be provided assistance under the government's poverty alleviation programmes, Parliament was informed on Wednesday.
In a written reply to Lok Sabha, the minister of
state for planning Ashwani Kumar said, "These poverty lines are not to be used for assisting the poor under different poverty alleviation programmes."

He said a joint statement by the Plan panel Deputy Chairman and Union Minister of rural development in early October had stated the present state-wise poverty estimates based on Planning Commission's methodology will be used to impose any ceiling on the number of households to be included under different government programmes and schemes.
The minister was replying to a question on whether any person earning more than Rs 32 per day in urban areas and Rs 26 per day in rural areas is eligible or not to draw benefits of such schemes. The Planning Commission recently an affidavit in the Supreme Court in this regard.
"The affidavit filed by Planning Commission on September 20 was in compliance of specific direction by the Supreme Court to update the poverty line computed by the Tendulkar Committee for 2004-05 to the latest price level," Kumar said.
In reply to another question in Lok Sabha, he said the on-going Socio-Economic Caste Census (SECC) 2011 would be taken into account for arriving at specific entitlements under the schemes.
By the time the SECC 2011 is completed, the Ministry of Rural Development and the Planning Commission will consult the states, other experts and civil society organisations in this regard.
They will arrive at a consensus on the methodology to determine the eligibility and entitlements under various programmes and schemes, he said.
The government and the Planning Commission had come under a lot of flak for suggesting Rs 32 and Rs 26 per day as the poverty line.
He added that on applying price increase using the Consumer Price Index for Industrial Workers for urban areas and Consumer Price Index for Agriculture Labourers for rural areas, the poverty line at June 2011 price level was placed provisionally at Rs 965 per capita per month in urban areas and Rs 781 per capita per month for rural areas.
But the provisional figure was on the basis of consumption expenditure and not per person earning.

Jaya resumes deposition in disproportionate assets case

Bangalore Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalallithaa on Wednesday resumed her deposition before a special court here in the disproportionate assets case, appearing before it for the fourth time since last month.

She appeared before Special Judge B M Mallikarjunaiah at the makeshift court hall at the Parapana Agrahara Central Jail on city outskirts to reply to the remaining 192 questions out of the 1,339 framed by the judge in the 15-year old case.

Jayalalithaa, who returned to Chennai last evening after the deposition, arrived here by a special aircraft in the morning.

During the inconclusive deposition yesterday, Jayalalithaa had answered questions mainly about the extravagant wedding of her estranged foster son V N Sudhakaran in 1996 that landed her in a major controversy and about transactions by firms in which she was a 'dormant partner'.

In the closed-door hearing held amidst tight security, Jayalalithaa had faced 580 questions taking the total queries answered so far to 1,147.

She deposed in the court yesterday for the third time after Supreme Court rejected her plea for exemption from personal appearance and seeking permission to submit written answers.

The apex court had given two days time to the special court here to complete the questioning.

The AIADMK supremo had appeared before the court on October 20 and 21 when she replied to about 571 questions.

Senior counsel representing Jayalalithaa B Kumar had yesterday said the questioning was incomplete and expressed hope that the process would be completed today.

Jayalalithaa has been charged with accumulation of wealth worth Rs 66 crore disproportionate to her known sources of income when she was the chief minister between 1991-96.

The trial was transferred from a Chennai court to Bangalore in 2003 by the Supreme Court on a petition by DMK General Secretary K Anbazhagan.


23/11/2011

Baba Ramdev takes Anna route for Jan Lokpal

New Delhi: Yoga guru Ramdev on Wednesday threatened to launch a nationwide agitation against UPA, starting from five poll-bound states, if it did not take "decisive" steps to bring the Jan Lokpal Bill and repatriate black money stashed abroad in the Winter Session of Parliament.
In a letter shot off to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the yoga guru, who was bundled out of Delhi during his June agitation at Ramlila Maidan against corruption, underlined his demands and set a one-week deadline for being informed about the measures taken to address his concerns.
He said he was demanding the Jan Lokpal Bill to be passed in the Winter Session and efforts made to bring back black money stashed abroad. He also said there was a need for change in the system.
"If the government does not take important and decisive steps on these three issues in the Winter Session, then I will be forced to organise agitations in the five poll-bound states, including Uttar Pradesh, and later extend it to other parts of the country," he told reporters while releasing copies of his letter to the Prime Minister.
Source: PTI
23/11/2011

Jaitapur n-plant site not immune to quake: Experts

Two leading geologists have warned that a magnitude 6-plus earthquake cannot be ruled out in Jaitapur - the proposed site of India's largest 9,900 MW nuclear power plant on the west coast that has seen protests against it for safety reasons - and that it could occur within the lifetime of the power plant.
"Since Jaitapur lies in the same compressional stress regime that has been responsible for generating both the magnitude 6.3 Latur and magnitude 6.4 Koyna earthquakes in the past five decades, it can be argued that a similar sized earthquake could possibly occur directly beneath the power plant," they say in a report in the latest issue of Current Science published by the Indian Academy of Sciences in Bangalore.
"The probability of this earthquake occurring is low but it is nevertheless possible, and is an important consideration in the analysis of power plant safety," say its authors -- Roger Bilham in the department of geological sciences of the University of Colorado, US, and Vinod Gaur in the CSIR Centre for Mathematical Modelling and Computer Simulation in Bangalore.
According to Bilham and Gaur, the Indian Plate is unique among the world's continental plates in that it is flexed by its collision with the Tibetan Plateau resulting in "belts" of buckling parallel to the Himalaya that extend southward, deep into the plate interior.
This "flexural depression", they say, results in high compressional stresses that are believed to be responsible for the thrust faulting that produced the Latur earthquake, and presumably for the faulting in the Koyna region. "The Jaitapur region lies in this same compressional downwarp," the researchers warn.
"The occurrence of earthquakes of up to magnitude 6.5 on faults near Koyna and Latur at approximately the same latitudes of Jaitapur is of considerable concern, since the stress regime near Jaitapur cannot differ substantially from these two areas when viewed from a 'flexural' perspective," the scientists note.
Moreover, the occurrence of the nearby Koyna earthquake has presumably loaded the Jaitapur region closer to failure as a result of a process called "Coulomb stress transfer", they add.
The Jaitapur site is 110 km from the Koyna earthquake of 1967, which was induced by the impounding of the Koyna reservoir. The authors say the Koyna earthquake signifies a region that was highly stressed prior to reservoir impoundment.
"As the stresses in the region are likely to be similar over hundreds of kilometres, the Jaitapur region must be considered to be similarly stressed," they say.
Jaitapur has no record of local seismicity in the past century. However, moderate events such as the Koyna earthquake at distances less than 30 km and larger ones at distances greater than 100 km can also produce significant shaking, they say.
This level of shaking can be easily accommodated by most nuclear power plants, but considering that Jaitapur lies in a tectonic setting similar to Latur and Koyna, an earthquake of magnitude 6.5 is "not unlikely" there, they say. "It could occur within the lifetime of the nuclear power plant."
The Nuclear Power Corporation that plans to house six French reactors in Jaitapur has said the reactors will not face a seismic risk as the site is in seismic zone three and not four. But Bilham and Gaur note that the historical seismic record near Jaitapur extends reliably back for only 200 years and estimates of risk assessed from a short dataset of only the past few centuries, "may not represent the true risk to the plant", they say.
Bilham and Gaur say the low strain rate and the rare incidence of recent or historical earthquakes in the region means "there presumably exist numerous faults that represent seismic hazards we know nothing about". Many of India's faults do not reach the surface, and their examination using traditional palaeo-seismic methods is not feasible, they say.
"A knowledge of the distribution of surface and subsurface faults near Jaitapur is, therefore, an important factor in characterising local seismic hazards considering that the Latur earthquake occurred on an unmapped surface fault," the report says.
The geologists caution that the apparent "seismic quietness" of Jaitapur does not mean that a severe earthquake cannot occur there. "If stress in the region is sufficiently mature to have brought an existing subsurface fault close to failure, an earthquake may be imminent," they said. "It is our opinion that insufficient data are available to exclude this possibility."
"While this may be considered of low probability, it is nevertheless possible, and as the recent earthquake in Japan has demonstrated, it is relevant to plan for all possible futures in the design of nuclear power plants," the geologists conclude.
Source: IANS
23/11/2011

Cyrus Mistry to succeed Ratan Tata

Mumbai: Cyrus Mistry will be the new chairman of the $71 billion Tata Group, succeeding incumbent Ratan Tata who retires next year, Tatas announced Wednesday.
Cyrus is the younger son of construction tycoon Pallonji Mistry and belongs to a family which is one of the largest shareholder in the Tata Group.
The 43-year-old Mistry scion was appointed deputy chairman of the board of directors of Tata Sons at its meeting Wednesday. He will work in this position for a year till Ratan Tata lays down the chairman's office in December 2012.
"He will work with Ratan N. Tata over the next year and take over from him when Mr. Tata retires in December 2012. This is as per the unanimous recommendation of the selection committee," said the group in its statement.
The group, which was over 100 companies in sectors as diverse as communications, IT, engineering, power, automobiles, cosmetics, air-conditioning and consumer durables, had set up a selection committee in 2010 to look for a successor to Ratan Tata.
Cyrus was the youngest member when in August 2006 he was appointed to the board of Tata Sons, the holding company of the group. He succeeded his father Pallonji Mistry, who retired after a year's extension at age 76.
Ratan Tata, the chairman of the group since 1991, endorsed the appointment of Cyrus and called it a "good and far-sighted choice".
"He has been on the board of Tata Sons since August 2006 and I have been impressed with the quality and calibre of his participation, his astute observations and his humility," said the group's chairman.
"He is intelligent and qualified to take on the responsibility being offered and I will be committed to working with him over the next year to give him the exposure, the involvement and the operating experience to equip him to undertake the full responsibility of the group on my retirement."
Cyrus, currently managing director of the Shapoorji Pallonji Group, has been a director of Tata Sons since August 2006. He is a graduate of civil engineering from Imperial College, London, and has a master of science in management from the London Business School.
Corporate heavyweights too welcomed Cyrus's appointment choice.
"We have had a 25-year-old relation with Shapoorji Pallonji family and I have dealt with him personally. I found him acute, very humble, humane and determined in his visions. I am thrilled for him," said Deepak Parekh, HDFC chairman.
"It is a big job, it is a difficult job, it's an organisation with complex set of industries, it's not going to be easy," the veteran banker added about Cyrus's job profile at the helm of one of the country's industrial giants.
Ratan Tata has been largely credited in making the Tata Group a global conglomerate with revenues for 2010-11 from its international operations at $48.3 billion, which constitutes 58 percent of its total revenues.
He was also at the forefront of big ticket acquisitions like that of Anglo-Dutch steel maker Corus and the legendary luxury auto brands Jaguar and Land Rover.
Source: IANS


22/11/2011

To be number one, vote for Congress: Rahul tells UP

Lucknow: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi Tuesday reiterated that central funds for the development of Uttar Pradesh were being misused by the Mayawati government and, if voted to power, his party would make the state "number one" in the country.
Rahul Gandhi Tuesday embarked upon a mass contact programme ahead of the state assembly polls early next year.
"The poor in the state are not getting the benefits of funds being released for them and the development of Uttar Pradesh. It's because the state government is not bothered about the development of Uttar Pradesh and the poor and downtrodden," Gandhi told a gathering in Uttar Pradesh's Barabanki district, some 30 km from Lucknow.
"Since the last 20 years, the poor are not getting their share... The governments of Bharatiya Janata Party, Samajwadi Party and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) have all been anti-people.
"If the Congress forms the government in Uttar Pradesh, we assure that in five years we would in a big way take up the development of the state, and in 10 years Uttar Pradesh will get to acquire the number one position among all the states in the country," added Gandhi.
Taking on Mayawati "for not accepting MNREGS as the most profitable scheme for the poor", Gandhi said, "Actually, she is right that MNREGS is not of any help for the poor in the state because it is senior ministers, bureaucrats, contractors and middlemen, who actually get the benefits from the MNREGS and other central government sponsored schemes."
"Either the developmental funds are blocked in Lucknow or are made to disappear by bureaucrats. And you all have to suffer... It's not the loss of chief minister, officers or anyone... The public of the state is at the receiving end," said Gandhi.
He said owing to the anti-people stand of the Mayawati government, the Congress-led central government this time made certain provisions so that the Rs.6,234 crore weavers' package can actually be availed of by weavers.
"We were told that the weavers would not get a single penny of the package if it was executed by the state government-controlled cooperative societies. Therefore, this time we made the arrangements so that the money could be deposited directly to the bank accounts of the weavers. I am quite confident that now the weavers would get the benefits of the package."
Calling upon the public, particularly youths, to support the Congress for "changing the future of the state", Gandhi said: "We all can change the future of the state if we stand united. It's not at all difficult... If you want to change the Uttar Pradesh government, you need to support the Congress at the centre."
"With your support Congress can give you 'a government-for-all' in the state... It will work for every section of society, irrespective of caste, creed and religion. We would ensure that the money meant for the public reaches the desired destination."
Citing examples of Congress-ruled states, Gandhi said: "Despite the progress of the country, Uttar Pradesh continues to lag behind... If the situation prevails, you will continue to move to Punjab, Haryana and other states for jobs. We will bring the state on track and work for its progress and development in a real sense," said Gandhi.
In a bid to boost the morale of party workers ahead of the assembly polls, Gandhi said: "Someone told me that unlike our opponents, the Congress party workers don't have enough money... I am of the view that it is not money power that makes one powerful."
"I believe power comes to those who follow the truth... I am confident that Congress workers - the backbone of our party - will make the party victorious in the assembly polls... I am quite confident about it," said Gandhi.
Source: IANS
Full coverage:

Rahul Gandhi
Mayawati
Congress party
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Palash Biswas
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