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Mumbai building collapse toll rises to 34, rescue efforts continue

The death toll in Thursday's collapse of an old, dilapidated five-storeyed building in the Bhendi Bazaar area of Mumbai rose to 34 on Friday with the recovery of more bodies from the debris in search and rescue efforts that continued throughout last night.

 
Mumbai building collapse: Death toll reaches 34
The death toll in yesterday's collapse of an old, dilapidated seven-storeyed building in the Bhendi Bazaar area of Mumbai rose to 34 with the recovery of more bodies from the debris in search and rescue efforts that continued throughout last night.
 
At least 12 others suffered injuries in the incident and have been admitted to the nearby J. J. Hospital for treatment, where the condition of some of them was stated to be serious, official sources said.
 
Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) Assistant Commissioner J S Ghegadmal told NetIndian over the telephone from the scene that 46 victims had been extricated from the debris, of whom 34 were found dead.
 
With at least two more persons feared trapped under the tonnes of rubble,  scores of men from the Mumbai Fire Brigade, the Municipal Corporation, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and local residents continued to be engaged in massive search and rescue efforts at the scene of the disaster.
 
Cranes, gas cutters and other equipment were being used to clear the debris and cut through the mangled steel and concrete to look for possible survivors.
 
The structure, Husaini Building, was 117 years old, sources said. It was located in a heavily congested area in south Mumbai's C Ward, near the J. J. Junction, and rescue teams with their big vehicles and heavy equipment had a tough time reaching the spot.
 
The building had a playschool on the premises which would have opened at 10 am as usual. However, the building came down at about 8.30 am yesterday, much before the children were scheduled to arrive.
 
This is the third major incident of building collapse in the metropolis in recent weeks. On July 25, at least 17 people died and 11 others suffered injuries when a four-storeyed residential building collapsed in the suburban area of Ghatkopar. On August 26, six people lost their lives when a part of a seven-storeyed under-construction building collapsed at Chandivali while some unauthorised portions of the structure were being demolished.
 
Municipal officials said they received a call about the collapse of the building around 8.40 am yesterday and the fire brigade was immediately rushed to the spot. Police have cordoned off the area to facilitate the smooth conduct of the search and rescue operations.
 
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The incident occurred two days after Mumbai experienced its heaviest rainfall since the July 2005 floods on Tuesday.
 
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis expressed grief over the loss of lives in the incident and is personally monitoring the situation. He visited the site yesterday and announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs. 5 lakh to the next-of-kin of those who had lost their lives in the collapse.
 
He also ordered a detailed inquiry into the incident by a committee headed by the Additional Chief Secretary (Housing).
 
Mr. Fadnavis has asked the Municipal Commissioner to submit a detailed report on the tragedy. He also asked the Municipal Commissioner to focus on ensuring immediate medical assistance to the injured persons. State Minister Subhash Desai visited the spot and later briefed Mr. Fadnavis about the situation.
 
In Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed sadness over the loss of lives in the tragedy.
 
“Collapse of a building in Mumbai is saddening. My condolences to the families of those who lost their lives and prayers with the injured," he said on Twitter.
 
Civic officials said the building had been declared unsafe for living six years ago. The residents had been served with evacuation notices in 2011 and ordered to vacate the building to enable redevelopment of the area under the Saifee Burhani Upliftment Trust (SBUT) project.
 
"We are extremely saddened and concened about this unfortunate incident, and our thoughts and prayers are with the affected families," a statement from the SBUT said here yesterday.
 
"All the necessary support from SBUT and the disaster management teams, including MCGM, Mumbai Police, Fire Brigade and MHADA are being mobilized towards ensuring the safety of all tenants in the affected area," it said.
 
The SBUT said the ground+six building housed a total of 13 tenants -- 12 residential and one commercial. Out of these, the Trust had already shifted seven families in 2013-14 to the SBUT transit homes.
 
"MHADA notices dated 28-03-2011 and 20-05-2011 declaring  the building dilapidated were issued along with offer of transit accommodation to the remaining tenants and occupants," it said.
 
The 150-year-old Bhendi Bazaar is home to more than 20,000 people. More than 80 percent of the 250 buildings in the locality are old and wornout and have been declared dilapidated and unfit for living by MHADA, the release added.
 
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16 dead, 15 injured, several trapped as five-storeyed building collapses in Mumbai

At least 16 people died and 15 others suffered injuries when an old, dilapidated five-storeyed building collapsed in the Bhendi Bazaar area, near J J Junction, in south Mumbai here this morning, official sources said.

 
16 dead, 15 injured in Mumbai building collapse
At least 16 people died and 15 others suffered injuries when an old, dilapidated five-storeyed building collapsed in the Bhendi Bazaar area, near J J Junction, in south Mumbai here this morning, official sources said.
 
Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai Assistant Commissioner J S Ghegadmal told NetIndian over the telephone from the scene that 31 victims had been extricated from the debris, of whom 16 were found dead.
 
The injured were rushed to the nearby J. J. Hospital, where the condition of some of them was stated to be serious, sources said.
 
With several more people feared trapped under the tonnes of debris, scores of men from the Mumbai Fire Brigade, the Municipal Corporation, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and local residents were engaged in massive search and rescue efforts.
 
Cranes, gas cutters and other equipment were being used to clear the debris and cut through the mangled steel and concrete to reach the victims and look for possible survivors.
 
The structure was more than a hundred years old, sources said. It was locted in a heavily congested area in south Mumbai's C Ward, and rescue teams with their big vehicles and heavy equipment had a tough time reaching the spot.
 
The building had a playschool on the premises which would have opened at 10 am as usual. However, the building came down at about 8.30 am, much before the children were scheduled to arrive.
 
This is the third major incident of building collapse in the metropolis in recent weeks. On July 25, at least 17 people died and 11 others suffered injuries when a four-storeyed residential building collapsed in the suburban area of Ghatkopar.
 
On August 26, six people lost their lives when a part of a seven-storeyed under-construction building collapsed at Chandivali while some unauthorised portions of the structure were being demolished.
 
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Municipal officials said they received a call about the collapse of the building around 8.40 am and the fire brigade was immediately rushed to the spot. There was no immediate word on the number of people living in the building and how many of them were trapped under the debris. Police have cordoned off the area to facilitate the smooth conduct of the search and rescue operations.
 
The incident has come two days after Mumbai experienced its heaviest rainfall since the July 2005 floods.
 
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis expressed grief over the loss of lives in the incient and is personally monitoring the situation.
 
He has ordered a detailed inquiry into the incident by a committee headed by the Additional Chief Secretary (Housing).
 
Mr. Fadnavis has asked the Municipal Commissioner to submit a detailed report on the tragedy. He also asked the Municipal Commissioner to focus on ensuring immediate medical assistance to the injured persons. State Minister Subhash Desai visited the spot and later briefed Mr. Fadnavis about the situation.
 
Civic officials said the building had been declared unsafe for living six years ago. The residents had been served with evacuation notices in 2011 and ordered to vacate the building to enable redevelopment of the area under the Saifee Burhani Upliftment Trust (SBUT) project.
 
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RBI modifies rules yet again on deposit of banned notes

Two days after specifying that deposits exceeding Rs. 5000 in demonetised Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 bank notes can only be made once before December 30, 2016, the Reserve Bank of India on Wednesday modified the rules once again, saying that the restrictions would not apply to those with KYC-compliant accounts.

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Two days after specifying that deposits exceeding Rs. 5000 in demonetised Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 bank notes can only be made once before December 30, 2016, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) today modified the rules once again, rsaying that the restrictions would not apply to those with KYC-compliant accounts.
 
In a notification sent to all banks on December 19, the RBI had said that, on a review of the provisions dealing with credit of the value of specified bank notes (SBNs) into bank accounts, it had been decided to place certain restrictions on deposits of SBNs into bank accounts while encouraging the deposits of the same under the Taxation and Investment Regime for the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, 2016.
 
"Tenders of SBNs in excess of Rs. 5000 into a bank account will be received for credit only once during the remaining period till December 30, 2016. The credit in such cases shall be afforded only after questioning tenderer, on record, in the presence of at least two officials of the bank, as to why this could not be deposited earlier and receiving a satisfactory explanation. The explanation should be kept on record to facilitate an audit trail at a later stage. An appropriate flag also should be raised in CBS to that effect so that no more tenders are allowed.
 
"Tenders of SBNs up to Rs. 5000 in value received across the counter will allowed to be credited to bank accounts in the normal course until December 30, 2016. Even when tenders smaller than Rs. 5000 are made in an account and such tenders taken together on cumulative basis exceed Rs. 5000 they may be subject to the procedure to be followed in case of tenders above Rs. 5000, with no more tenders being allowed thereafter until December 30, 2016," the earlier notification had said.
 
In the latest notification sent today to all banks, these provisions would not apply to fully KYC compliant accounts.
 
"Please refer to our circular DCM (Plg) No. 1859/10.27.00/2016-17 dated December 19, 2016. On a review of the above, we advise that the provisions of the above circular at sub para (i) and (ii) will not apply to fully KYC compliant accounts," the notification said.
 
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The Ministry of Finance had, explaining the December 19 decision, said on that date that more than five weeks had elapsed since the November 8 announcement on demonetisation. 
 
"It is expected that, by now, most of the people would have deposited such old notes in their possession," it had said.
 
"Further, an opportunity has been given to the public to make the payments towards tax, penalty, cess/surcharge and deposit under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY) 2016 with the old bank notes of Rs.500 and Rs.1000 denomination upto 30th December, 2016," it had said.
 
The decision had attracted a lot of criticism from Opposition parties as well as people at large in view of the fact that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had said that there was no reason for people to rush to the banks to deposit their old notes because they had time till December 30 to do so.
 
The demonetisation has led to a huge shortage of cash in hand for people across the country and has severely affected businesses. There continue to be long queues outside banks and ATM kiosks all over the country, which have been running out of cash every day.
 
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RBI cuts repo rate by 25 bps to 7.25%, keeps CRR unchanged at 4%

The Reserve Bank of India on Tuesday reduced its policy repo rate by 25 basis points from 7.5 per cent to 7.25 per cent with immediate effect and kept the cash reserve ratio of scheduled banks unchanged at 4.0 per cent, saying there was a case for a cut in the rate.

 
RBI cuts repo rate by 25 bps to 7.25%
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) today reduced its policy repo rate by 25 basis points (bps) from 7.5 per cent to 7.25 per cent with immediate effect and kept the cash reserve ratio (CRR) of scheduled banks unchanged at 4.0 per cent, saying there was a case for a cut in the key rate.
 
"With low domestic capacity utilization, still mixed indicators of recovery, and subdued investment and credit growth, there is a case for a cut in the policy rate today," RBI Governor Raghuram G. Rajan said in his Second Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Statement 2015-16 here.
 
He also said that banks should pass through the sequence of rate cuts into lending rates.
 
Dr Rajan said the central bank would continue to provide liquidity under overnight repos at 0.25 per cent of bank-wise NDTL at the LAF repo rate and liquidity under 14-day term repos as well as longer term repos of up to 0.75 per cent of NDTL of the banking system through auctions.
 
It would also continue with overnight/term variable rate repos and reverse repos to smooth liquidity, he said.
 
Consequently, the reverse repo rate under the LAF stood adjusted to 6.25 per cent, and the marginal standing facility (MSF) rate and the Bank Rate to 8.25 per cent.
 
Dr Rajan noted that banks had started passing through some of the past rate cuts into their lending rates, headline inflation had evolved along the projected path, the impact of unseasonal rains had been moderate so far, administered price increases remained muted, and the timing of normalisation of US monetary policy seemed to have been pushed back. 
 
"With low domestic capacity utilization, still mixed indicators of recovery, and subdued investment and credit growth, there is a case for a cut in the policy rate today," he said.
 
"Yet, of the risks to inflation identified in April, three still cloud the picture. First, some forecasters, notably the IMD, predict a below-normal southwest monsoon. Astute food management is needed to mitigate possible inflationary effects. 
 
"Second, crude prices have been firming amidst considerable volatility, and geo-political risks are ever present. Third, volatility in the external environment could impact inflation. 
 
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"Therefore, a conservative strategy would be to wait, especially for more certainty on both the monsoon outturn as well as the effects of government responses if it turns out to be weak. With still weak investment and the need to reduce supply constraints over the medium term to stay on the proposed disinflationary path (to 4 per cent in early 2018), however, a more appropriate stance is to front-load a rate cut today and then wait for data that clarify uncertainty," he said.
 
"Assuming reasonable food management, inflation is expected to be pulled down by base effects till August but to start rising thereafter to about 6.0 per cent by January 2016 – slightly higher than the projections in April. Putting more weight on the IMD’s monsoon projections than the more optimistic projections of private forecasters as well as accounting for the possible inflationary effects of the increases in the service tax rate to 14 per cent, the risks to the central trajectory are tilted to the upside," he said.
 
"Reflecting the balance of risks and the downward revision to GVA estimates for 2014-15, the projection for output growth for 2015-16 has been marked down from 7.8 per cent in April to 7.6 per cent with a downward bias to reflect the uncertainties surrounding these various risks," he noted.
 
Dr Rajan said strong food policy and management would be important to help keep inflation and inflationary expectations contained over the near term. 
 
"Furthermore, monetary easing can only create the enabling conditions for a fuller government policy thrust that hinges around a step up in public investment in several areas that can also crowd in private investment. This will be important to relieve supply constraints and aid disinflation over the medium term. A targeted infusion of bank capital into scheduled public sector commercial banks, especially those that implement concerted strategies to clean up stressed assets, is also warranted so that adequate credit flows to the productive sectors as investment picks up," he said.
 
The statement said that, since the first bi-monthly monetary policy statement of 2015-16 issued in April 2015, incoming data suggested that the global recovery was still slow and getting increasingly differentiated across regions. 
 
It said global financial markets had also been volatile, with risk-on risk-off shifts induced by changing perceptions of monetary policies in the advanced economies. Global currency markets continue to be dominated by the strength of the US dollar, with the G3 currencies reflecting the asynchronicity of their monetary policy stances. 
 
The statement noted that, as anticipated, the Central Statistics Office had revised downwards its estimate of India’s gross value added (GVA) at basic prices for 2014-15 by 30 bps from the advance estimates. 
 
"Domestic economic activity remains moderate in Q1 of 2015-16. Agricultural activity was adversely affected by unseasonal rains and hailstorms in north India during March 2015, impinging on an estimated 94 lakh hectares of area sown under the rabi crop. Reflecting this, the third advance estimates of the Ministry of Agriculture indicate a contraction in foodgrains production by more than 5 per cent in relation to the preceding year’s level," it said.
 
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The statement said successive estimates have been pointing to a worsening of the situation, with the damage to crops like pulses and oilseeds – where buffer foodstocks are not available in the central pool – posing an upside risk to food inflation. 
 
It said that, for the kharif season, the outlook is clouded by the first estimates of the India Meteorological Department (IMD), predicting that the southwest monsoon will be 7 per cent below the long period average. This has been exacerbated by the confirmation of the onset of El Nino by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, it said.
 
"What is clear is that contingency plans for food management, including storage of adequate quantity of seeds and fertilisers for timely supply, crop insurance schemes, credit facilities, timely release of food stocks and the repair of disruptions in food supply chains, including through imports and de-hoarding, need to be in place to manage the impact of low production on inflation. Inflation control will also be helped by limiting the increase in agricultural support prices," it said.
 
The statement said industrial production had been recovering, albeit unevenly. The sustained weakness of consumption spending, especially in rural areas as indicated in the slowdown in sales of two-wheelers and tractors, continued to operate as a drag. Corporate sales have contracted. 
 
"The disappointing earnings performance could have been worse if not for the decline in input costs. Capacity utilisation has been falling in several industries, indicative of the slack in the economy. While an upturn in capital goods production seems underway, clear evidence of a revival in investment demand will need to build on the tentative indications of unclogging of stalled investment projects, stabilising of private new investment intentions and improving sales of commercial vehicles," it said.
 
The statement said that, in April, output from core industries constituting 38 per cent of the index of industrial production declined across the board, barring coal production. 
 
"The sustained revival of coal output augurs well for electricity generation and mining and quarrying, going forward. There is some optimism on gas pricing and availability. The resolution of power purchase processes has to be expedited and power distribution companies’ financial stress has to be addressed on a priority basis. Some public sector banks will need more capital to clean up their balance sheets and support lending as investment revives," it said.
 
The RBI said leading indicators of services sector activity were emitting mixed signals. 
 
"A pick-up in service tax collections, sales of trucks, railway freight, domestic air passenger and air freight traffic could augur well for transport and communication and trade. On the other hand, the slowdown in tourist arrivals, railway traffic and international air passenger and freight traffic could affect hotels, restaurants and some constituents of transportation services adversely. The services PMI declined in April 2015, mainly on account of slowdown in new business orders. Community and personal services are likely to be held back by the ongoing fiscal consolidation," it said.
 
In April, retail inflation measured by the consumer price index (CPI) decelerated for the second month in a row, supported by favourable base effects [of about (-) 0.8 per cent] that moderated the rise in the price index for the fourth successive month. 
 
"Food inflation softened to a contra-seasonal four-month low, with the impact of unseasonal rains yet to show up. Vegetables inflation continued to ease, along with that of other sub-groups such as cereals, oil, sugar and spices. On the other hand, protein items, especially milk and pulses, continued to impart upward inflationary pressures," it said.
 
It also said fuel inflation rose for the fourth successive month to a twelve-month high, driven by prices of electricity and firewood. 
 
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"Inflation in these components was accentuated by base effects – the recent price uptick coming on top of muted increases a year ago. Inflation excluding food and fuel rose marginally. House rent, education, medical and transport expenses were among the major drivers of inflation in this category. Rural wage growth, although still moderate, picked up. Inflation expectations remain in high single digits, although they may adapt further to current low inflation. Yet, both input and output price pressures remain muted as reflected in the Reserve Bank’s industrial outlook survey," it said.
 
The statement said merchandise export growth had weakened steadily since July 2014 and entered into contraction from January 2015 through April, with a recent shrinking of even volumes exported. 
 
"The deterioration in export performance affected economies across Asia as global demand fell and the fall in commodity prices impacted terms of trade for commodity exporters. From December 2014 onwards, merchandise import growth also turned negative, led by a sharp decline in the volume of oil imports as inventory build-up by refineries subsided. 
 
"Gold imports spiked in the month of March and remained elevated in April owing to festival demand and regulatory relaxations. Notably, the volume of imports has been recording increases, despite the value decline. Given these developments, the reduction in the current account deficit resulting from the sharp decline in oil prices has begun to reverse, though the size of the deficit is expected to be contained to about 1.5 per cent of GDP this year. 
 
"Net exports are, therefore, unlikely to contribute as much to growth going forward as they did in the past financial year. Consequently growth will depend more on a strengthening of domestic final demand. While portfolio and direct foreign investment flows were buoyant during 2014-15, with net foreign direct investment to India at US$ 36.6 billion and net portfolio inflows at US$ 41 billion, the year 2015-16 has begun with net portfolio outflows in the wake of a reduction in global portfolio allocations to India. Foreign exchange reserves are around US$ 350 billion, providing a strong second line of defence to good macroeconomic policies if external markets turn significantly volatile," the statement added.
 
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Aruna Shanbaug, in vegetative state for 42 years after being raped in 1973, dies

Aruna Shanbaug, a nurse who remained in a vegetative state for nearly 42 years after being brutally raped in1973, died on Monday morning in Mumbai's KEM Hospital after a bout of pneumonia, hospital sources said.

 
Aruna Shanbaug dies after 42 years in vegetative state
Aruna Shanbaug, a nurse who remained in a vegetative state for nearly 42 years after being brutally raped in1973, died this morning in Mumbai's KEM Hospital after a bout of pneumonia, hospital sources said.
 
Shanbaug, 67, was put on ventilator support in the intensive care unit of the hospital for more than a week, they said.
 
She breathed her last at around 9.30 am today, they said. She would have turned 68 in the first week of June.
 
Shanbaug had been in a semi-comatose condition after the horrific incident of November 23, 1973 in which her assailant, Sohanlal, used a dog chain around her neck to pin her down during the assault, resulting in serious damage to her brain cells.
 
Her colleagues at the KEM Hospital had been caring for her for the past four decades, meeting her every need and ensuring, among other things, that she did not have even a single bedsore during this period.
 
On March 7, 2011, the Supreme Court had, in an important ruling, dismissed a petition filed by Ms Pinki Virani, who claimed to be the next friend of Shanbaug, seeking permission for euthanasia since she was in a vegetative state for more than 37 years at that time.
 
A bench comprising Justices Markendey Katju and Gyansudha Misra  held that active euthanasia is illegal but passive euthanasia is permissible with the permission of the concerned high court in appropriate cases.
 
The bench in its 110-page judgement held that the real next friend of Shanbaug was the staff of the K E M Hospital, Mumbai, who had een looking after her for decades.
 
The apex court while permitting passive euthanasia in appropriate cases with the permission of the concerned high court, however, put a rider that the high court will have to set up a medical court before permitting passive euthanasia and it will be the law of the land till Parliament enacts appropriate law on the issue of mercy killing.
 
The Central Government as well as the KEM Hospital had vehemently opposed the petitioner.
 
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Salman Khan given 5 years in jail in 2002 case, HC extends his bail by two days

Bollywood star Salman Khan was on Wednesday convicted and sentenced to five years in prison by a court in Mumbai for causing the death of a pavement dweller in a 2002 hit-and-run case in which he was accused of driving under the influence of liquor, but got bail for two days from the Bombay High Court a little later.

 
Salman Khan gets five years in jail in 2002 hit-and-run case
 
 
Popular Bollywood actor Salman Khan was today convicted and sentenced to five years in prison by a sessions court here for causing the death of a pavement dweller in a 2002 hit-and-run case in which he was accused of driving under the influence of liquor, but got bail for two days from the Bombay High Court a little later.
 
Sessions judge D W Deshpande held that all the charges against the actor, including culpable homicide not amounting to murder, had been proven.
 
Since the quantum of sentence was more than three years, Khan could not have applied for bail in the sessions court and, therefore, approached the High Court. Khan was already on bail in the case, and the High Court extended it by two more days until Friday, when it will hear his bail application.
 
Khan's lawyers had sought bail on the ground that the detailed order of the sessions judge had not been made available yet.
 
Once the copy of the High Court's order reached the session court, he left for home around 7.15 pm after completing various formalities. Hundreds of his fans and well-wishers had gathered outside his residence in Bandra to greet him on his arrival.
 
The sessions judge accepted the prosecution's case that Khan, 49, was at the wheel at the time of the accident, rejecting the defence plea that it was his driver Ashok Singh who was actually driving the vehicle then.
 
Khan and members of his family present in the court room were visibly upset after hearing the verdict.
 
During the argument on the quantum of sentence, lawyers for the actor pleaded for a lesser term, citing his philanthropic work and the fact that he had paid Rs 19 lakh as compensation to the family of the victim. They also said he was prepared to pay more if ordered to do so. "We are not running away from responsibility," his counsel said.
 
The prosecution, on the other hand, argued for the maximum sentence of 10 years.
 
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The case related to the incident, nearly 13 years ago, on September 28, 2002 when the actor's Land Cruiser went out of control and ran over five persons sleeping on a pavement outside a bakery in the Bandra area of the city. One person died and the four others suffered injuries in the incident.
 
The prosecution said Khan was driving the vehicle when the mishap occurred, that he was driving without a licence and that he was drunk at that time. They also accused him of fleeing from the scene. The actor, on the other hand, said he was not driving, that he was not drunk and that he had not run away from the spot.
 
The prosecution produced eyewitnesses, those who were injured in the accident, employees of the bar where the actor had consumed drinks, doctors who examined his blood samples and forensic experts, among others, as witnesses.
 
In a surprising development, Khan's driver Ashok Singh turned up in court recently, after more than 12 years, and deposed that it was he who was driving the car on that day. He said the front left tyre of the car had burst, leading to the mishap
 
Large crowds of Khan's fans, mediapersons, lawyers and others had gathered outside the court at Kalaghoda to find out about the judgement.
 
The judge pronounced his guilty verdict within minutes after arriving in court and later prounced the quantum of sentence, about two hours later, at 1.10 pm.
 
Khan was charged with culpable homicide not amounting to murder, rash and negligent driving, causing hurt by act endangering life,  causing grievous hurt, causing damage to property, driving vehicle in contravention of rules and driving at great speed after consuming alcohol.
 
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Modi urges RBI to set targets for financial inclusion for banks, FIs

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday urged the Reserve Bank of India to take the lead in encouraging financial institutions to set concrete targets for financial inclusion over the next 20 years, to help transform the quality of life of the poor.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressing the Financial Inclusion Conference organised by the Reserve Bank of India, in Mumbai on April 2, 2015.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressing the Financial Inclusion Conference organised by the Reserve Bank of India, in Mumbai on April 2, 2015.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi today urged the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to take the lead in encouraging financial institutions to set concrete targets for financial inclusion over the next 20 years, to help transform the quality of life of the poor. 
 
"I come as a representative of the poor, underprivileged, marginalized and tribals; I am one among them; I seek on their behalf and trust you will not disappoint me," he said at the RBI Conference on Financial Inclusion here, which also marked the completion of 80 years of the central bank.
 
Mr Modi encouraged RBI to set goals on intermediate targets: of 2019, when the country will celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi; 2022, 75 years of independence; 2025, 90 years of RBI, and 2035, 100 years of RBI. 
 
He said the success of the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) and the Direct Benefit Transfer of LPG subsidy (DBTL), had shown the potential of the enormous role that the banking sector can play in ensuring financial inclusion. 
 
Calling for making financial inclusion a "habit", Mr Modi asked banks to take inspiration from the success of women self-help groups. He asked banks to keep in mind the requirement of youth who needed either knowledge or skills. He also gave the example of the soon-to-be-launched Micro Units Development Refinance Agency (MUDRA) Bank in this regard and urged banks to come up with creative financial inclusion instruments to help prevent farmer suicides. 
 
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The Prime Minister said that, along with economic and social parameters, there was need to think of a geographical parameter as well for financial inclusion. He said eastern India had immense economic potential, and the banking sector should recognize and plan for this. 
 
Appreciating the role played by RBI over the last 80 years, the Prime Minister complimented the RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan for his grasp and clarity on economic issues. 
 
As part of the Make in India initiative, the Prime Minister urged RBI to take the lead in ensuring that India starts to manufacture the paper and ink that are used to print currency notes. 
 
Apart from Dr Rajan, Maharashtra Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley were amongst those present on the occasion.
 
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RBI cuts repo rate by 25 bps to 7.5%, keeps CRR unchanged at 4%

Acting for the second time within two months outside the policy review cycle, the Reserve Bank of India on Wednesday, in a surprise move, reduced the key policy repo rate under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) by 25 basis points from 7.75 per cent to 7.5 per cent with immediate effect.

 
Acting for the second time within two months outside the policy review cycle, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) today, in a surprise move, reduced the key policy repo rate under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) by 25 basis points (bps) from 7.75 per cent to 7.5 per cent with immediate effect.
 
RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan said in a statement on monetary policy that the central bank had also decided to keep the cash reserve ratio (CRR) of scheduled banks unchanged at 4.0 per cent of net demand and time liabilities (NDTL).
 
He said the RBI would continue to provide liquidity under overnight repos at 0.25 per cent of bank-wise NDTL at the LAF repo rate and liquidity under 7-day and 14-day term repos of up to 0.75 per cent of NDTL of the banking system through auctions.
 
He said it would continue with daily variable rate repos and reverse repos to smooth liquidity.
 
Consequently, the reverse repo rate under the LAF stood adjusted to 6.5 per cent, and the marginal standing facility (MSF) rate and the Bank Rate to 8.5 per cent with immediate effect, he said.
 
The RBI had, on January 15 this year, reduced the repo rate by 25 basis points to 7.75 per cent, stating then that the momentum of inflation had significantly reduced.
 
However, in its Sixth Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Statement 2014-15 on February 3, the RBI decided to keep the repo rate unchanged at 7.75 per cent, saying there had been no substantial new developments on the disinflationary process or on the fiscal outlook since January 15.
 
Today's decision has come just four days after Finance Minister Arun Jaitley presented his General Budget for 2015-16 to Parliament on February 28.
 
On February 20, the Central Government and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had signed a landmark agreement on Monetary Policy Framework under which the RBI will aim to bring inflation below 6 per cent by January 2016.
 
The target for financial year 2016-17 and all subsequent years shall be 4 per cent, with a band of +/- 2 per cent.
 
The agreement, made public on March 2, is a shift towards inflation targeting that Dr Rajan had been advocating for some time.
 
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Dr Rajan said in his statement today that the need to act outside the policy review cycle was prompted by two factors.
 
"First, while the next bi-monthly policy statement will be issued on April 7, 2015 the still weak state of certain sectors of the economy as well as the global trend towards easing suggests that any policy action should be anticipatory once sufficient data support the policy stance. Second, with the release of the agreement on the monetary policy framework, it is appropriate for the Reserve Bank to offer guidance on how it will implement the mandate," he said.
 
He said that, going forward, the RBI would seek to bring the inflation rate to the mid-point of the band of 4 +/- 2 per cent provided for in the agreement with the Governmnt, that is, to 4 per cent by the end of a two-year period starting fiscal year 2016-17.
 
He said the guidance on policy action given in the fifth-bi-monthly monetary policy statement of December 2014 was largely unchanged. 
 
"Further monetary actions will be conditioned by incoming data, especially on the easing of supply constraints, improved availability of key inputs such as power, land, minerals and infrastructure, continuing progress on high-quality fiscal consolidation, the pass through of past rate cuts into lending rates, the monsoon outturn and developments in the international environment," he said.
 
Dr Rajan recalled that, in its statement on monetary policy of January 15, 2015, the RBI had reduced the policy repo rate by 25 basis points and indicated that “Key to further easing are data that confirm continuing disinflationary pressures. Also critical would be sustained high quality fiscal consolidation…”.
 
"While maintaining the interest rate stance in its sixth bi-monthly monetary policy statement of February 3 in the absence of new developments on inflation or on the fiscal outlook till then, the Reserve Bank indicated that it will keenly monitor the revision in the consumer price index (CPI) with regard to the path of inflation in 2015-16 as well as the Union Budget for 2015-16," he said.
 
The statement said the new CPI, rebased to 2012, was released on February 12. Inflation in January 2015 at 5.1 per cent as measured by the new index was well within the target of 8 per cent for January 2015. 
 
"Prices of vegetables declined and, hearteningly, inflation excluding food and fuel moderated in a broad-based manner to a new low. Thus, disinflation is evolving along the path set out by the Reserve Bank in January 2014 and, in fact, at a faster pace than earlier envisaged," it said.
 
"The uncertainties surrounding any inflation projection are, however, not insignificant. Oil prices have firmed up in recent weeks, and significant further strengthening, perhaps as a result of unanticipated geo-political events, will alter the inflation outlook. Other international commodity prices are expected to remain benign, given still-sluggish global demand conditions. Food prices will be affected by the seasonal upturn that typically occurs ahead of the south-west monsoon and, therefore, steps the government takes on food management will be critical in determining the inflation outlook. Finally, the possible spill over of volatility from international financial markets through exchange rate and asset prices channels is also still a significant risk," it said.
 
The RBI said that, perhaps, the most significant influences on near-term inflation would be the strength of aggregate demand relative to available capacity. Two recent developments pertaining to the demand-supply balance are the recently-released GDP estimates and the Union Budget for 2015-16.
 
"The Central Statistical Organisation is to be commended on the changes it has made to the methodology of estimating GDP, bringing India up to international best practice. Yet the picture it presents of a robust economy, with growth having picked up significantly over the last three years, is at odds with still-low direct measures of growth of production, credit, imports and capacity utilisation as well as with anecdotal evidence on the state of the economic cycle. Nevertheless, the picture of a steadily recovering economy appears right," Dr Rajan said.
 
"The fiscal impulses in the Union Budget then assume importance. There are many important and valuable structural reforms embedded in this Budget, which will help improve supply over the medium term. In the short run, however, the postponement of fiscal consolidation to the 3 per cent target by one year will add to aggregate demand. At a time of accelerating economic recovery, this is, prima facie, a source for concern from the standpoint of aggregate demand management, especially with large borrowings intended for public sector enterprises," he said.
 
"Some factors mitigate the concern. The government has emphasized its desire to clean up legacy issues which gave a misleading picture of the true extent of fiscal rectitude, and has also moderated the optimism in its projections. To this extent, the true quantum of fiscal consolidation may be higher than in the headline numbers. Also, the government is transferring a significantly larger amount to the states, without entirely devolving responsibility for funding central programmes. To the extent that state budget deficits narrow, the general fiscal deficit will be lower. 
 
"Furthermore, supported by lower international energy prices, there is a welcome intent to shift from spending on subsidies to spending on infrastructure, and to better target and further reduce subsidies through direct transfers. Finally, the central government has signed a memorandum with the Reserve Bank setting out clear inflation objectives for the latter. This makes explicit what was implicit before – that the government and the Reserve Bank have common objectives and that fiscal and monetary policy will work in a complementary way. In sum, then, the government intends to compensate for the delay in fiscal consolidation with a commitment to an improvement in the quality of adjustment," he said.
 
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Dr Rajan noted that all these mitigating factors had a fair component of intent. The realised net fiscal impulse will depend on both central and state government actions going forward, he said.
 
"Finally, the rupee has remained strong relative to peer countries. While an excessively strong rupee is undesirable, it too creates disinflationary impulses. It bears repeating here that the Reserve Bank does not target a level for the exchange rate, nor does it have an overall target for foreign exchange reserves. It does intervene on occasion, in both directions, to reduce avoidable volatility in the exchange rate. Any reserve build-up is a residual consequence of such actions rather than a direct objective," he said.
 
The RBI said that softer readings on inflation are expected to come in through the first half of 2015-16 before firming up to below 6 per cent in the second half. 
 
"The fiscal consolidation programme, while delayed, may compensate in quality, especially if state governments are cooperative. Given low capacity utilisation and still-weak indicators of production and credit off-take, it is appropriate for the Reserve Bank to be pre-emptive in its policy action to utilise available space for monetary accommodation," it added.
 
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Bollywood personalities take a stand, urge people to vote for "secular party"

In an unprecedented move, a group of well-known people from the film and entertainment industry, including filmmakers such as Vishal Bhardwaj, Mahesh Bhatt, Govind Nihalani and Zoya Akhtar, singer Shubha Mudgal and actor Nandita Das, on Wednesday issued an appeal, urging people to vote for the secular party which is most likely to win in their constituency.

Nandita Das
Nandita Das
In an unprecedented move, a group of well-known people from the film and entertainment industry, including filmmakers such as Vishal Bhardwaj, Mahesh Bhatt, Govind Nihalani and Zoya Akhtar, singer Shubha Mudgal and actor Nandita Das, today issued an appeal, urging people to vote for the secular party which is most likely to win in their constituency.
 
"The best thing about our country is its cultural diversity, its pluralism - the co-existence of a number of religions and ethnicities over centuries, and hence the blooming of multiple streams of intellectual and artistic thought," the appeal said.
 
"And, this has been possible only because Indian society has prided itself on being essentially secular in character, rejecting communal hatred, embracing tolerance," it said.
 
The signatories, who also included filmmakers Imtiaz Ali, Kabir Khan and Vijay Krishna Acharya, writer Anjum Rajabali, and actors Swara Bhaskar, Jyoti Dogra and Joy Sengupta, said that the very sense of India was vulnerable today.
 
"The need of the hour is to protect our country's secular foundation. Undoubtedly, corruption and governance are important issues, but we will have to vigilantly work out ways of holding our government accountable to that. However, one thing is clear: India's secular character is not negotiable! Not now, not ever. 
 
"As Indian citizens who love our motherland, we appeal to you to vote for the secular party, which is most likely to win in your constituency," they added.
 
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Other signatories to the appeal include filmmakers Anand Patwardhan, Kundan Shah, Hansal Mehta, , writer-diector Saket Chaudhary, documentary filmmaker Rakesh Sharma, actor Aditi Rao, writer-director Vinay Shukla, writers Sanjay Chhel, Kamlesh Pandey, Robin Bhatt, Rajesh Dubey, Vinod Ranganath, Imteyaz Husain, 
 
Tabla maestro Aneesh Pradhan, lyricists Sameer Anjan, Kauser Munir and Jalees Sherwani, film editors Amitabh Shukla and Nishant Radhakrishnan, art director Sukant Panigrahi, producer Anusha Khan, sound designer Bishwadeep Chatterjee, screen writers Manasee Palshikar, Rukmini Sen, Priyanka Borpujari and Mazahir Rahim, documentary filmmaker Surabhi Sharma and screen writer Sharad Tripathi also signed the appeal.
 
The signatories also included cinematographers Anil Mehta and C K Muraleedharan, producer Preety Ali, filmmaker Sona Jain, theatre activist Sameera Iyengar, playwright Shivani Tibrewala Chand and activists Tushar Gandhi, Teesta Setalvaad and Javed Anand.
 
This is the first time that Bollywood personalities have come out collectively to take a stand during elections in the country, though many of them have been individually associated with political parties. Many have also contested and won elections and also served as Ministers at the Centre.
 
Writer Rajabali, whose brainchild the appeal is, told mediapersons that he was surprised at the readiness with which the younger lot signed the statement and took a stand at a time when they might justifiably be more obsessed with their careers.
 
Actress Nandita Das, who has been involved in a variety of causes, said that she owed whatever she was today to the secular and pluralist upbringing that she had.
 
Without naming any party, she said there was a couple of them which are playing a divisive role. She said that, by laying emphasis on development and governance, these parties were seeking to underplay their divisive record.
 
According to her, there was enough evidence in the public domain about the role these parties had played. She said it was not just about communalism and Muslims, but about all other religious, linguistic and regional groups. In this context, she pointed out the stand taken by various parties on criminalisation of private and consensual sex between adults of the same sex.
 
"I am what I am because of the varied influences that I have experienced. I want my son to grow up with all these many influences," she said. She said the country could not be reduced to a monolith or a homogenous entity. "In our differences lie our unity," she said.
 
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Nine killed in fire on Mumbai-Dehradun Express near Dahanu in Maharashtra

Nine passengers including a woman, were killed when a fire broke out in the speeding 19019 Mumbai-Dehradun Express near Dahanu in Thane district of Maharashtra in the early hours of Wednesday.

Fire kills nine on Mumbai-Dehradun Express
Nine passengers including a woman, were killed when a fire broke out in the speeding 19019 Mumbai-Dehradun Express near Dahanu in Thane district of Maharashtra in the early hours of today.
 
Western Railway sources said the fire broke out in S3 coach of the train and then spread to the adjoining coaches S2 and S4, taking the passengers, most of whom were asleep, unawares.
 
The cause of the fire, which broke out at around 0235 hours today while the train was running between Dahanu Road and Gholwad stations , could not be ascertained immediately, the sources said.
 
According to them, the fire was noticed by a gateman at a level crossing, and he alerted the station master of Gholwad station, who quickly contacted the driver and asked him to stop the train.
 
Fire tenders and ambulances rushed to the spot and the blaze was brought under control soon. The affected coaches were detached and the rest of the train was later brought to Gholwad station, about 145 km north of Mumbai, on the Maharashtra-Gujarat border, around 0530 hours.
 
Accident and medical relief vans were rushed to the spot from Mumbai and Valsad in Gujarat to assist in the relief efforts.
 
Five persons who felt suffocated due to the smoke were given first aid in the acident relief vans and later discharged, te sources said.
 
The Divisional Railway Manager of Mumbai Central Division and other top railway officials rushed to the spot to supervise the relief operations.
 
Five of the deceased have been identified by the Railways as Ms Deepika Shah , 65, Mr Dev Shankar Upadhyay, 48, Mr Surendra Shah, 68, Mr Nasirkhan Ahmedkhan Pathan, 50, and Mr Feroz Khan, 38. 
 
The bodies of the victims were sent to Civil Hospital, Dahanu Road (Telephone No. 02528 222371) by the Government Railway Police.
 
The  Railways have offered free accommodation in the train to the relatives of the deceased up to Dahanu Road.
 
Railways Minister Mallikarjun Kharge has expressed his grief at the loss of lives and announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs 5 lakh to the next-of-kin of those killed in the fire.
 
He has also announced an inquiry by the Commissioner of Railway Safety, Western Circle, into the incident.
 
Meanwhile, services on the up line resumed at 0640 hours, the sources added.
 
About 500 food packets along with tea and drinking water were arranged for the passengers of the train at Valsad where five more coaches were added to the train before dispatching it for its o­nward journey.
 
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The Railways have opened helplines to provide information to relatives of the passengers.
 
The numbers are:
 
Mumbai: 022 23011853 and 022 23007388
Valsaid: 241903- Valsad; 
Dahanu Road: 022 67649632
Bandra Terminus: 022 26435756
Surat: 0261 2423992
New Delhi: 011 23342954
Dehradun: 0135 2624002, 2624003
 
Just 11 days ago, on December 28, 2013, as many as 26 passengers were killed and eight others suffered injuries when a major fire broke out in an air-conditioned coach of the 16594 Bangalore-Nanded Express shortly after it left the Satya Sai Prasanthi Nilayam station in Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh.
 
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Virat Kohli suffered neck injury during IPL, stint with Surrey ruled out

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India cricket skipper Virat Kohli suffered a neck injury during the Indian Premier League (IPL) and has been ruled out from playing for Surrey in the English County Cricket Championship, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said today.
 
A press release from BCCI said Kohli, the captain of Royal Challengers Bangalore, suffered the injury while fielding during Match 51 of this year's IPL against Sunrisers Hyderabad on May 17 at the M.  Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru.
 
"Kohli, who was scheduled to play for Surrey CCC in the month of June, has been ruled out from participating," it said.
 
"This decision was taken following assessments by the BCCI Medical team, subsequent scans, and a specialist visit.
 
"The Team India captain will now undergo a period of rehabilitation under the supervision of the BCCI Medical team.
 
"He will begin training and subsequently undergo a fitness test at the NCA in Bengaluru from June 15. The BCCI Medical Team is confident that Mr Kohli will regain full fitness ahead of India’s upcoming tours to Ireland and England," the release added.
 
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Equity indices gain on value buying; Tata Motors scrips slump

Value buying lifted the key equity indices on Thursday afternoon, after they slumped around one per cent in the previous session.
 
According to market observers, IT, banking and Teck (technology, entertainment and media) stocks gained the most.
 
However, heavy selling pressure on auto, consumer durables and oil and gas stocks arrested further gains.
 
At 12.28 p.m., the broader Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) traded at 10,477.10 points -- up by 46.75 points or 0.45 per cent -- from its previous close of 10,430.35 points.
 
The barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex), which had opened at 34,404.14 points, traded at 34,528.81 points (12.28 p.m.) -- higher by 183.90 points or 0.54 per cent -- from its previous session's close of 34,344.91 points.
 
The Sensex has so far touched a high of 34,548.98 points and a low of 34,367.83 points during the intra-day trade. The BSE was slightly tilted towards the bulls with 1,194 advances and 1,151 declines so far.
 
Scrip-wise, shares of Tata Motors declined the most so far, after the company on Wednesday reported a standalone net loss of Rs 499.94 crore for the quarter ended March. In terms of financial year, the automobile major reported a standalone net loss of Rs 1,034.85 crore during 2017-18.
 
At 12.32 p.m., shares of Tata Motors on BSE were at Rs 289.35 per share, down Rs 19.90 or 6.43 per cent from the previous close.
 
So far, the major gainers on the BSE were Sun Pharma, Infosys, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Bharti Airtel and Tata Steel while Tata Motors, Tata Motors (DVR), ONGC, Bajaj Auto and Maruti Suzuki were the major losers.
 
On the NSE, the top gainers were Sun Pharma, Infosys and TCS. The major losers were Tata Motors, ONGC and Grasim Industries. 
 
IANS
 
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Global cues, value buying lift equity indices

Broadly positive Asian markets, along with value buying lifted the key Indian equity indices during the morning trade session on Thursday.
 
According to market observers, healthy buying was witnessed in IT, capital goods, consumer durables and banking stocks.
 
Around 9.25 a.m., the broader Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) traded at 10,468.05 points -- up by 37.70 points or 0.36 per cent -- from its previous close.
 
The barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex), which opened at 34,404.14 points, traded at 34,461.75 points -- higher by 116.84 points or 0.34 per cent -- from its previous session's close of 34,344.91 points.
 
Sensex has so far touched a high of 34,495.02 points and a low of 34,399.25 points during the intra-day trade.
 
On Wednesday -- the previous trade session -- both the indices closed in the negative territory as persistent outflow of foreign funds along with weak global cues and a depreciation in the rupee dampened investor sentiments.
 
Consequently, the NSE Nifty50 closed at 10,430.35 points, down 106.35 points or 1.01 per cent.
 
Similarly, the S&P BSE Sensex tumbled nearly one per cent. It closed at 34,344.91 points -- down 306.33 points or 0.88 per cent.
 
IANS
 
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Equity indices slump around 1% on weak global cues, depreciating rupee

Persistent outflow of foreign funds along with weak global cues and a depreciation in the rupee led to the key Indian equity indices plunging on Wednesday.
 
According to market observers, rise in domestic transportation fuel prices as well as renewed global geopolitical tensions and trade disputes between the US and China eroded investor sentiments.
 
Consequently, the wider Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed at 10,430.35 points, down 106.35 points or 1.01 per cent from the previous close of 10,536.70 points.
 
Similarly, the barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE tumbled nearly one per cent. It opened at 34,656.63 points and closed at 34,344.91 points -- down 306.33 points or 0.88 per cent -- from its previous session's close of 34,651.24 points.
 
In terms of intra-day trade, Sensex touched a high of 34,668.47 points and a low of 34,302.89 points. The BSE market breadth was bearish with 1,587 declines and 1,168 advances.
 
"Markets corrected sharply on Wednesday after witnessing a minor bounce on Tuesday. The weakness came on the back of weak global cues as investors were concerned about trade tensions, the possible cancellation of North Korea summit planned in June, economic issues in Turkey and commodity prices fall," said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research at HDFC Securities. 
 
"Major Asian markets have closed on a negative note, barring the KOSPI and Jakarta indices. European indices like FTSE 100, CAC 40 and DAX are trading in the red."
 
Geojit Financial Services' Head of Research Vinod Nair said: "Market edged lower amid pessimism on global trade talks and below par fourth quarter earnings."
 
"Metals sank while PSU banks outperformed and prevented the market from a nose dive correction. Investors expect that the worst is over related to PSU banks NPA with adequate provisions and expectation of recapitalisation from government.
 
"On the other hand, rupee continued to fall and the fear of inflationary pressure may lead the market to consolidate," Nair added.
 
On the currency front, the Indian rupee weakened by 38 paise against the US dollar to 68.43, from its previous close at 68.05 per greenback. 
 
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Besides, provisional data with exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors sold scrips worth Rs 311.11 crore, while the domestic institutional investors bought stocks worth Rs 789.78 crore.
 
Sector-wise, the S&P BSE consumer durables index and the capital goods index gained by 62.06 points and 10.54 points respectively.
 
On the other hand, the S&P BSE metal index plunged by 534.27 points, followed by the oil and gas index, which receded by 491.72 points and the auto index that ended lower by 130.31 points. 
 
The major gainers on the Sensex were State Bank of India, up 3.56 per cent at Rs 263.20; NTPC, up 0.82 per cent at Rs 166.35; Larsen and Toubro, up 0.55 per cent at Rs 1,327.20; Tata Motors, up 0.49 per cent at Rs 309.25; and Mahindra and Mahindra, up 0.05 per cent at Rs 831.25 per share.
 
The top losers were Tata Steel, down 6.57 per cent at Rs 539.25; ONGC, down 4.75 per cent at Rs 175.55; Dr Reddy's Lab, down 2.92 per cent at Rs 1,955; IndusInd Bank, down 2.80 per cent at Rs 1,856.70; and ITC, down 1.92 per cent at Rs 273.45 per share.
 
IANS
 
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Global cues subdue key equity indices; Vedanta scrips fall

Weakness in global markets along with concerns of renewed geopolitical and trade tensions subdued the key Indian equity indices on Wednesday afternoon making the bourses trade on a flat-to-negative note.
 
According to market observers, heavy selling was witnessed in oil and gas and metal stocks.
 
However, healthy buying activity in capital goods, banking and IT stocks arrested futher downslide on the indices.
 
At 12.49 p.m., the wider Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) traded at 10,514.35 points, down 22.35 points or 0.21 per cent from the previous close of 10,536.70 points.
 
Similarly, the barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE, which had opened at 34,656.63 points, traded at 34,626.50 points (12.50 p.m.) -- down 24.74 points or 0.07 per cent -- from its previous session's close of 34,651.24 points.
 
The Sensex has so far touched a high of 34,668.47 points and a low of 34,520.65 points.
 
The BSE market breadth, however, was bullish with 1,358 advances and 1,035 declines so far.
 
"Equity markets opened mixed following Asian indices, after the US markets closed in red following negative reactions by President Trump on the ongoing US-China talks, and sudden change in decisions of not having the peace talks with North Korean leader in Singapore," said Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer, Tradebulls.
 
So far, the major gainers on the BSE were State Bank of India (SBI), ICICI Bank, Tata Motors, Sun Pharma and NTPC while Tata Steel, Dr Reddy's Lab, ONGC, IndusInd Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank were the major losers.
 
On the NSE, the top gainers were SBI, Cipla and ICICI Bank. The major losers were Hindustan Petroleum, BPCL and Vedanta. 
 
Shares of Vedanta declined both on the BSE and NSE as protests against its Sterlite Copper project in Tamil Nadu took a violent turn and nine people died, including a girl, in police firing on Tuesday.
 
At 12.54 p.m., Vedanta's shares on the BSE were trading at Rs 257.5 per share, down 12 points or 4.45 per cent from its previous close.
 
IANS
 
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Key Indian equity indices open flat

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The key Indian equity indices opened on a flat-to-negative note on Wednesday.
 
At 9.18 a.m., the wider Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) traded at 10,525.70 points, down 11 points or 0.1 per cent from the previous close of 10,536.70 points.
 
Similarly, the barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE, which had opened at 34,656.63 points, traded at 34,628.13 points (9.18 a.m.) -- down 23.11 points or 0.07 per cent -- from its previous session's close of 34,651.24 points.
 
The Sensex has so far touched a high of 34,667.78 points and a low of 34,620.67 points.
 
The BSE market breadth was tilted towards the bulls with 584 advances and 535 declines so far.
 
IANS
 
 
 
 
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IPL: Chennai edge out Hyderabad in thriller to enter final

A fighting unbeaten half-century under pressure from Faf du Plessis helped Chennai Super Kings edge past Sunrisers Hyderabad by two wickets in the first qualifier here on Tuesday to enter the final of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
 
Needing 140 runs to win, Chennai made heavy weather of what should have been a comfortable chase before crossing the line with five balls to spare.
 
Chennai have reached the final seven times in the nine seasons they have competed in the IPL. They had missed out on the previous two seasons as they were banned following the spot fixing and betting scandal.
 
Du Plessis batted through the innings to remain not out on 67 runs, with five hits to the fence and four sixes studding his 42-ball knock. The opener kept on playing sensibly throughout even as no other batman clicked at the other end. 
 
For Hyderabad, spinner Rashid Khan, Siddarth Kaul and Sandeep Sharma scalped two wickets each. 
 
Hyderabad will now face the winner of the match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Rajasthan Royals in the Qualifier 2 on May 25 in Kolkata.
 
Chasing a modest total, Chennai lost their first wicket on the fifth ball of the first over. Wicket-keeper Shreevats Goswami took a brilliant catch to dismiss opener Shane Watson (0) off pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
 
In-form Suresh Raina was playing beautifully, hitting four well-timed boundaries on his way to 22 off 13 balls. But he was bowled by pacer Kaul in the fourth over when he shuffled across and exposed his leg-stump.
 
Off the very next ball, Ambati Rayudu (0) was also clean bowled by Kaul. Rayudu's dismissal was largely due to poor shot selection as he misjudged a slow yorker only to see the ball crash into the base of middle and off-stump.
 
Unperturbed by the fall of wickets, du Plessis kept on playing sensibly. New batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni (9), then joined in the middle and the duo rotated the strike perfectly.
 
But just when the duo started timing the ball well, leg-spinner Rashid Khan delivered one that turned the wrong way to dismiss Dhoni.
 
With Chennai struggling at 39/4 after eight overs, all eyes were on the lower-middle order But it failed as Dwayne Bravo (7), Ravindra Jadeja (3) and Deepak Chahar (10) went back to the pavilion in quick succession.
 
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Du Plesis, on the other hand, started unleashing his shots and hammered a few sixes but lacked support from other batters 
 
Harbhajan Singh could only manage two runs off nine balls before being run out. With Chennai in deep trouble, Shardul Thakur gave some much needed impetus to the run rate with three boundaries off the five balls he faced.
 
Thakur, who remained unbeaten on 15 runs, played sensibly and gave the strike to du Plesis.
 
With Chennai needing six runs off the last over, du Plessis brought up the victory in style over the umpire's head off Bhuvneshwar Kumar's bowling.
 
Earlier, lower-order batsman Carlos Brathwaite's unbeaten 43-run knock and some useful contributions from skipper Kane Williamson and Yusuf Pathan helped Sunrisers Hyderabad post a modest total of 139/7 in their allotted 20 overs.
 
Put in to bat, Hyderabad started the proceeding on a poor note, losing opener Shikhar Dhawan (0) on the first ball.
 
Other batsmen Goswami (12), Manish Pandey (8) and Shakib Al Hasan (12) also failed to deliver when needed the most. Brathwaite then came in the middle and played a quick-fire knock and took his team out of troubled waters. He played 29 balls and one boundary and slammed four sixes.
 
For Chennai, Dwayne Bravo scalped two wickets.
 
Brief scores: Sunrisers Hyderabad: 139/7 in 20 overs (Carlos Brathwaite 43 not out; Dwayne Bravo 2/25) against Chennai Super Kings: 140/8 in 19.1 overs (Du Plesis 67; Rashid Khan 2/12)
 
IANS
 
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Q4 results, value buying help equity indices break 5-day losing streak

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Attractive valuations, along with healthy quarterly results, supported the key Indian equity indices closed Tuesday's volatile trade session on a positive note after five consecutive days of decline.
 
After opening on a negative note, the indices rose to intra-day high levels in the early hours of trade, before ceding most of their gains due to weakness in global markets and rise in crude oil prices.
 
Index-wise, the broader Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed at 10,536.70 points -- up by 20 points or 0.19 per cent -- from its previous close of 10,516.70.
 
The barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE, which had opened at 34,601.49 points, closed higher by 35.11 points or 0.1 per cent, at 34,651.24 points.
 
The Sensex touched a high of 34,754.60 points and a low of 34,550.22 points during the intra-day trade. 
 
"After a choppy morning trade, indices firmed up in the afternoon and managed to settle with small gains," said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research at HDFC Securities.
 
Jasani further told IANS: "Broad market indices like the BSE mid-cap and small-cap indices gained more, thereby outperforming the main indices."
 
Both the S&P BSE mid-cap and small-cap ended 0.65 per cent from their respective previous closing levels.
 
Consequently, the BSE market breadth was tilted towards the bulls with 1,405 advances against 1,219 declines. On the NSE, too, the market breadth was positive.
 
On the currency front, the Indian rupee strengthened by eight paise against the US dollar to 68.05, from its previous close at 68.13 per greenback.
 
In terms of investments, provisional data with the exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors sold scrips worth Rs 1,651.63 crore, while the domestic institutional investors bought stocks worth Rs 1,496.83 crore.
 
Sector-wise, the S&P BSE auto index rose the most, by 413.76 points, followed by the metal index which increased by 211.32 points and the healthcare index that ended 143.12 higher from its previous close.
 
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On the other hand, the S&P BSE oil and gas index fell by 59.23 points, followed by the energy index, which ended 11.10 points lower and the FMCG index that fell by 10.97 points. 
 
On the NSE, according to BNP Paribas Mutual Fund's Senior Fund Manager for Equities, Abhijeet Dey, barring the FMCG index, which closed in the red, all other sectoral indices closed the trading day in the positive zone. 
 
Dey further said that auto stocks gained the most among the sectors due to expectation that China may cut import duty on passenger cars.
 
The major gainers on the Sensex were Dr Reddy's Lab, up 6.30 per cent at Rs 2,013.75; Bajaj Auto, up 3.86 per cent at Rs 2,825; Tata Motors, up 3.78 per cent at Rs 307.75; State Bank of India, up 3.69 per cent at Rs 254.15; and Coal India, up 3.23 per cent at Rs 278.45 per share.
 
The top losers were Tata Consultancy Services, down 1.40 per cent at Rs 3,508.05; Asian Paints, down 1.27 per cent at Rs 1,283.5; Axis Bank, down 1.27 per cent at Rs 522; IndusInd Bank, down 1.19 per cent at Rs 1,898.50; and ITC, down 1.17 per cent at Rs 278.8 per share.
 
IANS
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SBI posts Q4 loss of Rs 7,718 cr on provisions, gross NPAs up

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Reflecting the continued pressure on state-run banks, State Bank of India (SBI) on Tuesday posted a loss of Rs 7,718 crore for the fourth quarter ended March, mainly due to increased provisioning, the bank said in a stock exchange filing.
 
The country's largest lender had recorded a profit after tax (PAT) of Rs 2,815 crore in the corresponding quarter of the last fiscal.
 
SBI's fourth quarter loss more than trebled over that of the previous quarter when the bank had incurred a loss of Rs 2,416 crore. 
 
"Bank's net loss is attributable to lower trading income and significant MTM (mark-to-market) losses due to hardening of bond yields; incremental provision during the quarter for NPAs (non-performing assets); higher provisioning on account of wage revision and enhancement in gratuity ceiling," SBI said.
 
Operating profit in the fourth quarter at Rs 15,883 crore declined by 8.24 per cent, from Rs 17,309 crore in the same quarter of last year. 
 
Net interest income during January-March at Rs 19,974 crore declined by 5.18 per cent, from Rs 21,065 crore in the same period a year ago "contributed mainly by reduction in MCLR (marginal cost of lending rate) and base rate and increase in NPAs".
 
"Interest expenses on deposits during the quarter in question at Rs 33,206 crore was down by 6.28 per cent, from Rs 35,431 crore in Q4FY17 despite a growth in deposits by 4.68 per cent," the statement said. 
 
The bank's accumulated problem of gross NPAs, or bad loans, during the quarter in consideration at Rs 2,23,427 crore, worsened at 10.91 per cent, as compared to the 10.35 per cent in the previous quarter, and a gross NPA level of 6.9 per cent registered in the same quarter a year ago. 
 
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The net NPA ratio during the January-March quarter stood at 5.73 per cent, which is a marginal rise over 5.61 per cent on this count in the previous quarter. Net NPAs in the same quarter last year were at 3.71 per cent.
 
Provisioning shot up to Rs 28,096 crore in the fourth quarter, compared to Rs 18,876 crore in the previous quarter.
 
SBI Chairman Rajnish Kumar said at a press conference here that the bank's provision coverage ratio stands at 66 per cent, which reflects the strength of its balance sheet.
 
"Financial year 2017-18 has been a difficult year for the entire industry and SBI is no exception. The loss number may look big but look at the strength of the balance sheet," he said. 
 
Regarding the NPAs, the Chairman said the bank has "put the past behind". Some remnants of the bad loan cycle, however, remain.
 
With results coming in during market hours, the SBI stock closed on Tuesday at Rs 254.15 a share, up Rs 9.05, or by 3.69 per cent, over its previous close on the Bombay Stock Exchange.
 
IANS
 
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130 years of Mumbai's iconic Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus

A view of the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus building in Mumbai. Photo: Central Railway website
A view of the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus building in Mumbai. Photo: Central Railway website
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus, formerly known as the Victoria Terminus, the Central Railway's main station and headquarters building here, completed 130 years of its construction on May 20, 2018.
 
An outstanding example of Victorian Gothic Revival architecture in India, it blends with themes deriving from Indian traditional architecture.
 
The building was originally planned as the office of GIP (Great Indian Peninsular) Railway. The most photographed building after the Taj Mahal, it was designed by Frederick William Stevens, a consulting architect.
 
Stevens designed the monumental Terminus which became famous as the largest building then erected in Asia. The construction started in 1878 and on Jubilee Day in 1887, it was named after Queen-Empress Victoria.
 
Later in 1996, it was renamed as Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus. It was again renamed as Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus in July 2017. In 2004, UNESCO enlisted this building as World Heritage Site for its architectural splendour. From December 2012, this heritage building has been opened for public viewing on working days.
 
The Terminus was constructed at a cost of Rs 16.14 lakh and the C shaped building is planned symmetrically about the east-west axis. The crowning point of the whole building is the central main dome carrying up a colossal 16’-6’’ high figure of lady pointing a flaming torch upwards in her right hand, and a spoked wheel held low in the left hand, symbolizing `Progress’.
 
This dome has been reported to be the first octagonal ribbed masonry dome that was adapted to an Italian Gothic style building.
 
 The station was constructed with six platforms at a cost of Rs. 10.4 lakh and in 1929, the first remodelling took place to expand it to 13 platforms. Further modifications were done to the yard and the station had two more platforms thus making it a total of 15 platforms in 1994.
 
Today it has 18 platforms with a spacious east side entry as well. In April 2018, a heritage gully was inaugurated adjacent to platform no.18, where Sir Leslie Wilson, the GIP Heritage Electric Loco, and other heritage items are displayed.
 
During the centenary celebrations of Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus Building, a postal stamp was released. In 2013, when the building celebrated quasi-centennial (125 years) anniversary, a special postal cover was released on the occasion.
 
NNN
 
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Negative global cues subdue key Indian equity indices

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Broadly negative Asian markets, along with high crude oil prices and caution ahead of key quarterly results subdued the Indian equity indices during the morning trade session on Tuesday.
 
According to market observers, heavy selling was witnessed in metals, automobile and banking stocks.
 
Around 9.30 a.m., the broader Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) traded at 10,497.80 points -- down by 18.90 points or 0.18 per cent -- from its previous close.
 
The barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex), which opened at 34,601.49 points, traded at 34,574.81 points -- lower by 41.32 points or 0.12 per cent -- from its previous session's close of 34,616.13 points.
 
Sensex has so far touched a high of 34,659.63 points and a low of 34,563.76 points during the intra-day trade.
 
On Monday -- the previous trade session -- both the indices closed in the negative territory for the fifth consecutive session, as the formation of a non-BJP government in Karnataka, along with a weak rupee dampened investor sentiments.
 
Consequently, the NSE Nifty50 closed at 10,516.70 points, down 79.70 points or 0.75 per cent from the previous close of 10,596.40 points.
 
Similarly, the barometer S&P BSE Sensex settled in the red. It had opened at 34,873.16 points, closed at 34,616.13 points -- down 232.17 points or 0.67 per cent -- from its previous session's close of 34,848.30 points.
 
IANS
 
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Shweta Bachchan to make screen debut with father Big B

 
Shweta to make screen debut with father Amitabh Bachchan
 
 
Shweta Bachchan, daughter of Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan, will be seen in a jewellery ad in which she will be making her on-screen debut alongside her father.
 
Talking about the new venture, Ramesh Kalyanaraman, Executive Director of Kalyan Jewellers said in a statement: "We believe that audience will love to see the film wherein, both, Amitabh Bachchan and Shweta play the role of a father and daughter, in the ad film for the first time." 
 
"As a brand, Kalyan has always celebrated the bonds of family and relationships and the new film epitomises family values. Shweta's design inputs will also augment Kalyan's chic and trendy signature collections," the statement said.
 
The ad which attempted to capture the value of trust and transparency of a relationship is directed by G.B. Vijay, for the jewellery brand. Big B is the brand ambassador of Kalyan Jewellers since 2012.
 
This is not the first time the brand is featuring members of Bachchan family, as Jaya Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan also featured in a TVC to represent the brand.
 
IANS
 
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Air India Goa flight makes emergency landing in Mumbai

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An Air India flight from Goa made an emergency landing at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport here on Monday following a hydraulic failure, official sources said.
 
The flight AI-662 managed to land safely at 9.18 p.m. on the main runway which was closed for all other operations.
 
All flight operations were diverted to the secondary runway for around half an hour as the passengers were evacuated from the aircraft.
 
There are no reports any injuries to the passengers or the crew on board.
 
Normal flight operations resumed on the main runway by 9.40 p.m.
 
IANS
 
 
 
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Karnataka politics, oil prices depress equity market

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The formation of a non-BJP government in Karnataka, along with weakness in global indices and rising crude oil prices, pulled the key Indian equity indices to close in the negative territory for the fifth consecutive session on Monday.
 
According to market observers, a weak rupee against the US dollar also dampened the sentiments.
 
After opening on a flat note, the key indices rose during the early trade session but were unable to hold on to the gains for long.
 
Index-wise, the wider Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed at 10,516.70 points, down 79.70 points or 0.75 per cent from the previous close of 10,596.40 points.
 
Similarly, the barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE settled in the red. It had opened at 34,873.16 points, closed at 34,616.13 points -- down 232.17 points or 0.67 per cent -- from its previous session's close of 34,848.30 points.
 
The Sensex touched a high of 34,973.95 and a low of 34,593.82 points. 
 
Broader markets like the S&P BSE mid-cap index ended 1.64 per cent lower, while S&P BSE small-cap plunged 2.2 per cent. The overall BSE market breadth was bearish with 2,003 declines against 653 advances.
 
"Sentiments were weak due to the political situation in Karnataka. Private banks, realty and pharma stocks came under selling pressure," said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research at HDFC Securities.
 
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On the currency front, the Indian rupee weakened by 12 paise against the US dollar to 68.13, from its previous close at 68.01 per greenback.
 
In terms of investments, provisional data with the exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors sold scrips worth Rs 166.15 crore, while the domestic institutional investors bought stocks worth Rs 149.58 crore.
 
Sector-wise, the S&P BSE IT, oil and gas and Teck (Technology, Media and Entertainment) indices posted marginal gains, up by only 18.77 points, 13.74 points and 4.72 points, respectively.
 
On the other hand, the S&P BSE auto index fell the most, by 467.06 points, followed by the consumer durables index, which slumped by 445.98 points and the healthcare index that fell by 331.91 points. 
 
The major gainers on the Sensex were State Bank of India (SBI), up 2.47 per cent at Rs 245.10; Tata Consultancy Services, up 1.59 per cent at Rs 3,557.95; Coal India, up 1.26 per cent at Rs 269.75; ICICI Bank, up 1.1 per cent at Rs 289.65; and ONGC, up 0.43 per cent at Rs 185.85 per share.
 
The top losers were Sun Pharma, down 4.50 per cent at Rs 443.80; Dr. Reddy's Lab, down 4.23 per cent at Rs 1,894.35; Yes Bank, down 3.27 per cent at Rs 334.15; Tata Motors, down 2.85 per cent at Rs 296.55; and Tata Motors (DVR), down 2.69 per cent at Rs 175.45 per share.
 
IANS
 
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IPL play-offs: Chennai, Hyderabad look to seal final berth

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As the 11th season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) nears its climax, all eyes will be on the top two sides -- Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK) -- locking horns in the first qualifier on Tuesday at the Wankhede Stadium here for a place in the May 27 final.
 
Both Chennai and Hyderabad finished the league stage on 18 points, but the Kane Williamson-led side got their neck ahead to the No.1 spot with a superior net run-rate and Tuesday's winner will be guaranteed a place in the final at the same venue while the loser gets a second chance in the second qualifier in Kolkata on May 25.
 
Going in to the match, the Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led CSK hold a slight edge as they have got the better of their southern rivals twice in the league stage this season.
 
The yellow brigade have been on a roll since making their comeback to the IPL fold after serving a two-year-ban, and have rarely lost the momentum this season with the old guards and new sensations firing in unison.
 
In their final league game at their adopted home ground in Pune on Sunday, CSK rode on Suresh Raina's gutsy half century to not only romp home by five wickets but also stop Kings XI Punjab from entering the play-offs.
 
On the other hand, the Sunrisers have been on a three-game losing run, having already sealed their play-off spot with a victory on May 10 against Delhi Daredevils.
 
Interestingly, it was the CSK who halted Sunrisers' six-game winning streak with a comprehensive eight-wicket drubbing on May 13 in Pune.
 
Much of the credit for the Orange Army's entry into the playoffs goes to the consistency of skipper Kane Williamson, who sits second in the leading run-getters' list with 661 runs and the bowling unit led by paceman Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Afghan spinner Rashid Khan.
 
Besides Williamson, Shikhar Dhawan (437 runs) has lately come good with the bat but it is the middle order comprising Manish Pandey, Wriddhiman Saha, Yusuf Pathan and Shakib Al Hasan, who needs to share the responsibility of building on the platform set up by the top order.
 
Sunrisers' bowling this season has been extraordinary with Rashid and Shakib as well as the pace trio of Bhuvneshwar, Siddarth Kaul and Sandeep Sharma combining well to defend paltry totals.
 
On Tuesday, Sunrisers will once again hope that their bowling will do the trick against an in-form Chennai top order comprising the likes of Ambati Rayudu, who has been their standout performer with 586 runs and had in fact taken the game away with a scintillating hundred when the two teams last met. 
 
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Rayudu's opening partner Shane Watson has also been in top form, accumulating 438 runs from 13 matches, while Suresh Raina, skipper Dhoni and all-rounder Deepak Chahar have been the backbone of CSK's middle order.
 
In the bowling front, the two-time champions will bank on young South African Lungi Ngidi, who grabbed 4 for 10 to take the man of the match award on Sunday.
 
With Shardul Thakur, Chahar and Dwayne Bravo doing their bit on the pace bowling front, CSK will hope for veteran Harbhajan Singh leading the spin attack with left-armer Ravindra Jadeja in the middle overs.
 
The match timings for the play-offs have been advanced by one hour, which means the match will start at 7 p.m. Ahead of the clash, a women's exhibition game will take place at 2 p.m. with top Indian and foreign players taking part in the contest at the Wankhede.
 
Teams: 
 
Chennai Super Kings: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Captain & WK), Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, Faf Du Plessis, Harbhajan Singh, Dwayne Bravo, Shane Watson, Ambati Rayadu, Deepak Chahar, K.M. Asif, Kanish Seth, Lungi Ngidi, Dhruv Shorey, Murali Vijay, Sam Billings, Mark Wood, Kshtiz Sharma, Monu Kumar, Chaitanya Bishnoi, Imran Tahir, Karn Sharma, Shardul Thakur, N agadeesan, David Willy.
 
Sunrisers Hyderabad: Kane Williamson (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Manish Pandey, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Wriddhiman Saha (WK), Siddharth Kaul, Deepak Hooda, Khaleel Ahmed, Sandeep Sharma, Yusuf Pathan, Shreevats Goswami (WK), Ricky Bhui, Basil Thampi, T Natarajan, Sachin Baby, Bipul Sharma, Mehdi Hasan, Tanmay Agarwal, Alex Hales, Carlos Brathwaite, Rashid Khan, Shakib Al Hasan, Mohammad Nabi and Chris Jordan.
 
IANS
 
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