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Key Indian equity market indices open in green

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Despite a muted trend in Asian markets, the key Indian equity market indices on Thursday opened higher as the second phase of the Lok Sabha elections began with voting in 95 seats in the morning.
 
The Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE, which had closed at 39,275.64 points on Tuesday, opened higher at 39,420.04 points. The markets remained closed on Wednesday on account of Mahavir Jayanti.
 
Minutes into trading, it was quoting at 39,407.17 points, up by 131.53 points, or 0.33 per cent.
 
At the National Stock Exchange (NSE), the broader Nifty 50 was quoting at 11,821.80 points, up by 34.65 points or 0.29 per cent.
 
As many as 34 stocks advanced in the Nifty 50 index while 16 stocks declined. In BSE Sensex, 20 stocks including those of Reliance and Tata Motors were trading in the green while 10 stocks including NTPC, ITC were trading in red at 9.21 a.m.
 
Jet Airways shares were down 9.99 per cent in early trading season after the carrier announced to temporarily suspend all flight operations from Wednesday night as it failed to secure an interim funding of Rs 400 crore for maintaining bare minimum operations.
 
On Thursday, Asian indices were showing mostly a negative trend. 
 
Japan's Nikkei 225 was quoting in the red, down by 0.79 per cent, while Hang Seng was down by 0.59 per cent, South Korea's Kospi was also down by 1.06 per cent. China's Shanghai Composite was also quoting in the red, down by 0.07 per cent.
 
Overnight, Nasdaq closed in the red, down by 0.05 per cent, while FTSE 100 was up marginally by 0.02 per cent at the closing on Wednesday.
 
IANS
 

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Lenders 'reasonably hopeful' of Jet stake sale success

Hours after denying a lifeline to Jet Airways, which suspended its operations for want of cash, the airline's lenders led by the State Bank of India on Thursday said they are "reasonably hopeful" that the stake sale process would succeed and determine a fair value of the enterprise.
 
"Lenders are reasonably hopeful that the bid process is likely to be successful in determining the fair value of the enterprise in a transparent manner." a statement said.
 
The official statement said the lenders after due deliberations decided that the best way forward for the survival of Jet Airways was to get the binding bids from potential investors who have shown expression of interest (EOI) and have been issued bid documents on April 16.
 
Late on Wednesday night, Jet Airways in a regulatory filing to BSE had announced temporary suspension of its domestic and international operations. The decision was taken by the airline as no emergency funding came from its lenders.
 
"Since no emergency funding from the lenders or any other source is forthcoming, the airline will not be able to pay for fuel and other critical services to keep the operations going. Consequently, with immediate effect, Jet Airways is compelled to cancel all its international and domestic flights," the airline said in its filing.
 
Over the last few weeks, the crisis-hit airline tried to secure interim funding to keep the business going but its request did not find favour with its lenders. 
 
Unable to meet expenses, the airline gradually scaled down its operations and was flying just 6-7 aircraft from the peak of 119 a few months back.
 
It finally shuttered down on Wednesday night, leaving its 16,000-plus employees in the lurch.
 
Saddled with debt and losses, the airline is unlikely to come back to its feet any time soon. The airline's total liabilities are said to be about Rs 20,000 crore which includes Rs 8,400 crore owed to banks.
 
IANS

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Jet fails on interim funding; ops to be suspended

Jet Airways will temporarily suspend all flight operations from tonight after it failed to secure interim funding of Rs 400 crore for maintaining even bare minimum operations, sources said on Wednesday.
 
The airline currently only operated five aircraft with over 25 flights.
 
The development assumes significance as just a day before the airline's lenders had said that they remained committed to its revival.
 
"As per the current financial situation, it is not possible to maintain operations without any further funding. Operations will cease from tonight," sources told IANS here in Mumbai.
 
The airline will operate its last flight for the day at around 10.30 p.m.
 
Jet has already folded up most of its operations due to the grounding of over 90 percent of its fleet by lessors.
 
Awaiting the outcome of the lenders' meet with the government, the cash-starved airline had extended cancellation of international flights till April 18 (Thursday) after last week suspending them till April 15 (Monday).
 
Jet owes over Rs 8,000 crore to the SBI-led consortium of lenders. Its only ray of hope is an immediate injection of interim funding and the completion of the stake sale process initiated by lenders.
 
IANS
 

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Mitsui O. S. K. Lines to acquire strategic stake in six group companies of RIL

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Mitsui O. S. K. Lines (MOL) of Japan and a strategic minority investor have signed binding definitive agreements for strategic investment by them in six special purpose limited liability companies (SPVs), part of the Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) group.
 
Each of the SPVs owns a Very Large Ethane Carrier (VLEC), a press release from Reliance said.
 
The agreement has been signed by MOL and the strategic minority investor with Reliance Ethane Holding Pte. Ltd. (REHPL), incorporated in Singapore and a wholly owned subsidiary of RIL, which has 100% holding in the six limited liability companies (LLCs).
 
"Transaction closing is subject to regulatory approvals. Post-closing, SPVs shall be jointly controlled by REHPL and MOL," the release said.
 
P.M.S. Prasad, Executive Director, RIL, said “Given MOL is currently the operator of all the six VLECs, investment by MOL will deepen our relationship with them and ensure continued safe and efficient operations of the VLECs. We welcome MOL as a strategic partner into the SPVs as they move beyond the current operator role to joint owner and operator role in the SPVs."
 
Takeshi Hashimoto, Member of the Board, Executive Vice-President, MOL said, “This investment would enable MOL to add six unique VLECs, which we have been operating for some time now, as owners to its existing fleet of over 850 vessels which include LNG carrier, other tankers, dry bulkers, car carriers, ferries, and coastal RoRo ships and cruise ships. We also have container ships which are chartered by ONE. MOL has detailed knowledge about these assets having supervised the construction and delivery of the six VLECs and subsequently operating them since their delivery. We are therefore happy and look forward to using this strategic opportunity to be a joint owner and to significantly strengthen our existing relationship with Reliance."
 
MOL is one of the largest shipping companies in the world and owns and operates a fleet size of over 850 vessels. It is also the largest LNG carrier in the world. 
 
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RBI to issue Rs. 50 denomination banknotes bearing signature of Governor Shaktikanta Das

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The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has said that it would issue Rs. 50 denomination banknotes in the Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series bearing the signature of its Governor Shaktikanta Das.
 
The design of these notes is similar in all respects to Rs. 50 banknotes in Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series, a press release from RBI said.
 
"All banknotes in the denomination of Rs. 50 issued by the Reserve Bank in the past will continue to be legal tender," the release added.
 
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Jet asks for Rs 400 crore; fleet down to 5 aircraft

Financially-challenged Jet Airways has reportedly requested lenders for interim funding of Rs 400 crore to stave off a temporary closure, even as its current operational fleet further shrunk to five aircraft.
 
According to the Civil Aviation Secretary Pradeep Singh Kharola, the airline on Tuesday operated only five aircraft down from seven yesterday. Under the current regulations, the airline is required to operate five aircraft to save its air operating permit.
 
He said Jet's airport slots are vacant and that they are being re-allocated to other airlines on a temporary basis.
 
The ministry is expected to meet airport operators and airlines to sort out the slots issue.
 
However, the airline's lenders said they remain committed to its revival.
 
Punjab National Bank (PNB) Managing Director and CEO Sunil Mehta said discussions were on to provide interim funding.
 
"Lenders are committed to Jet Airways' revival. SBI and SBI Capital are working on a package but it has not been finalized," he said.
 
Earlier in the day, industry insiders said that Jet has asked lenders to provide immediate interim funding of Rs 400 crore else the airline might be forced to temporarily suspend overall operations.
 
Earlier in the day, the airlines' board meeting ended inconclusively as the airline awaited the lenders' decision on its plea for interim funds to stay aloft.
 
A day before, the airline presented a plan for interim funding to its lenders.
 
"The Board meet was inconclusive. We are awaiting for the lenders' reply. It is of paramount importance that we receive a clarity on interim funding," an airline source told IANS in Mumbai.
 
The development assumes significance as the airline has almost run out of funds to pay for fuel and other operational expenses.
 
Industry insiders say that, without extra funds, the airline might have to temporarily suspend operations.
 
It has folded up most operations due to the grounding of over 80 percent of its fleet by lessors.
 
Awaiting the outcome of lenders' meeting with the government, the cash-starved airline has extended cancellation of international flights till April 18 (Thursday) after last week suspending them till April 15 (Monday).
 
Jet's woes have intensified as the airline that once operated around 120 aircraft is now left with just a 16-plane fleet.
 
It owes over Rs 8,000 crore to the SBI-led consortium of lenders. Its only ray of hope is an immediate injection of interim funding and the completion of the stake sale process, initiated by lenders.
 
IANS
 

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Sensex, Nifty hit record closing high

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Major Indian equity indices -- Sensex and Nifty -- closed at their highest ever on Tuesday riding strong and sustained foreign fund inflows and bets of yet another rate cut over a near-normal monsoon forecast.
 
Both indices touched their all-time highs -- Sensex at 39,364.34 and Nifty 11,810.95 -- during the early trade and mostly held on to the gains throughout the day, led primarily by banking stocks, but closed slightly lower from the peaks. 
 
The BSE Sensex advanced by 369.80 points or 0.95 per cent to 39,275.64 and the broader Nifty jumped 96.80 points or 0.83 per cent to 11,787.15.
 
"The sentiment got a fillip due to the near-normal monsoon forecast. The (Dalal) Street is also anticipating further rate cuts to reverse the economic slowdown and sensing a return of consumption demand post elections," said Devang Mehta, Head - Equity Advisory, Centrum Wealth Management.
 
"The banks continue to have a lion's share in the ongoing rally and the onus to lead the earnings for Nifty will lie with the private banks. With two good primary market listings in two days and an upbeat mood, all eyes are now on the ongoing fourth-quarter earnings season."
 
Jet Airways witnessed a steep decline and closed 7.62 per cent lower as the struggling-to-stay-afloat airline awaits operational funding from the lenders. However, Jet's competitor Indigo marched higher to end 7.35 per cent up. 
 
SpiceJet also finished on a strong note, up 11.19 per cent after it informed the exchanges that it will induct five 90-seater Q400 Bombardier aircraft in the next 10 days.
 
IT major Wipro ended 2.45 per cent lower. It reported a 38 per cent rise in its year-on-year net profit for the fourth quarter of 2018-19.
 
IANS
 

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Indian equity indices open in green, Sensex up 230 points

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The key Indian equity indices opened on a positive note on Tuesday, with the BSE Sensex gaining over 200 points, on the back of a "near normal" monsoon forecast and positive trade data.
 
The Indian Metereological Department on Monday said that the south-west monsoon rains in 2019 will be near-normal with an expected rainfall of 96 percent.
 
The Nifty50 on the National Stock Exchange traded near its all-time high level and at 9.35 a.m., it was at 11,757.70, higher by 67.35 points or 0.58 percent from its previous close of 11,690.35 points.
 
The Sensex traded at 39,137.52, higher by 231.68 points or 0.60 percent from the previous close of 38,905.84 points.
 
It had opened at 39,040.30, and so far touched an intra-day high of 39,154.54 and a low of 39,038.81 points.
 
Rise in exports from the country also boosted the investor sentiment. India's merchandise exports grew 11.02 percent, on a year-on-year (YoY) basis in March, to $32.55 billion from $29.32 billion reported for the corresponding month of last year, official data showed on Monday.
 
IANS
 

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Hardik Pandya's cameo hands Bangalore another defeat

Hardik Pandya's quickfire cameo (37 unbeaten off 16) down the order handed Royal Challengers Bangalore their seventh defeat this season as Mumbai Indians won their Indian Premier League (IPL) tie at the Wankhede Stadium here on Monday by five wickets.
 
Despite a great start, Mumbai faltered during the slog overs but Pandya rescued his side as they clinched the contest with an over to spare.
 
Chasing a competitive 172 for victory, Rohit Sharma (28 off 19) and Quinton de Kock gave a perfect start to Mumbai's innings, taking them to 52 for no loss in the initial five overs.
 
Moeen Ali was the first to strike as his off-break delivery clattered Sharma's stumps, leaving Mumbai at 70/1 in the eighth over.
 
Just three balls later, Ali once again jolted the hosts as he picked de Kock (40 off 26) in front of the wickets.
 
Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav then forged a 33-run partnership as they repaired the major damage but Yuzvendra Chahal packed both of them back in short time to leave Mumbai reeling at 129/4 in the 16th over.
 
It seemed Mumbai would suffer a batting collapse but it was Pandya who made sure to help his team cross the line as the all-rounder and his brother Krunal Pandya (11 off 21) took Mumbai to 148 before the latter became a victim of Mohammed Siraj.
 
With 22 needed off the last couple of overs, Pandya showed his cameo with the bat as he smashed Pawan Negi for the required runs in just an over to help Mumbai register their fifth win this season.
 
For Bangalore, Chahal and Ali picked up a couple of wickets each.
 
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Earlier, AB de Villiers' scintillating knock (75 off 51) with Ali's 50 off 32 propelled Bangalore to 171/7.
 
Despite some early blows, de Villiers and Ali anchored Bangalore's innings with a valiant 105-run partnership for the third wicket before Lasith Malinga (4/31) rattled the middle order.
 
The visitors lost their skipper Virat Kohli (8) with just 12 runs on board. Kohli was trying to force a Jason Behrendorff delivery through the off-side, got cramped, and ended up giving an inside edge to de Kock behind the wickets.
 
Parthiv Patel (28) showed some resistance, taking his side near the 50-run mark before he was sent back by Hardik Pandya in the seventh over. De Villiers was then joined by Ali and the duo denied the hosts any further wicket, anchored the innings and took the team past the 100 run mark.
 
Enroute, they also notched up their respective half-centuries with the team looking comfortable at 144/2 in 17 overs.
 
Malinga finally shattered the partnership by packing Ali back in the 18th over. The Sri Lankan pacer went on to rock the lower middle order, sending back Marcus Stoinis (0), Akshdeep Nath (2) and Negi (0) to the hut in quick succession. 
 
De Villers finally departed trying to convert a single as he fell short of the crease. The South African superstar's knock was laced with six boundaries and four maximums.
 
Behrendorff and Pandya also picked a wicket each.
 
Brief scores:
 
Mumbai Indians: 172/5 in 19 overs (Quinton de Kock 40, Hardik Pandya 37 not out; Moeen Ali 2/18) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore: 171/7 in 20 overs (AB de Villiers 75, Moeen Ali 50; Lasith Maling 4/31) by 5 wickets.
 
IANS
 

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AB de Villers, Ali help RCB post 171/7 vs Mumbai

A B de Villiers' scintillating knock (75 off 51) with Moeen Ali's 50 off 32 propelled Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) to 171/7 against Mumbai Indians in an Indian Premier League (IPL) match at the Wankhede Stadium, here on Monday.
 
Despite some early blows, de Villiers and Ali anchored Bangalore's innings with a valiant 105-run partnership for the third wicket before Lasith Malinga (4/31) rattled the middle-order.
 
The visitors lost their skipper Virat Kohli (8) with just 12 runs on board. Kohli was trying to force a Jason Behrendorff delivery through the off-side, got cramped, and ended up giving an inside edge to Quinton de Kock behind the wickets.
 
Parthiv Patel (28) showed some resistance, taking his side near the 50-run mark. He was sent back by Hardik Pandya in the seventh over. de Villiers was then joined by Ali and the duo denied the hosts any further wicket, anchored the innings and took the team past the 100-run mark.
 
Enroute, they also notched up their respective half-centuries with the team looking comfortable at 144/2 in 17 overs.
 
Malinga finally shattered the partnership by packing Ali back in the 18th over. The Sri Lankan pacer went on to rock the lower middle-order and sent Marcus Stoinis (0), Akshdeep Nath (2) and Pawan Negi (0) to the hut in quick succession. 
 
de Villers had to finally depart trying to convert a single as he fell short of the crease. The South African superstar's knock was laced with six boundaries and four maximums.
 
Behrendorff and Pandya also picked a wicket each.
 
Brief scores:
 
Royal Challengers Bangalore: 171-7 in 20 overs (AB de Villiers 75, Moeen Ali 50; Lasith Malinga 4/31) vs Mumbai Indians
 
 

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IPL: Mumbai asks Bangalore to bat first

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Mumbai Indians' skipper Rohit Sharma won the toss and opted to field first against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in an Indian Premier League (IPL) tie at the Wankhede Stadium here on Monday.
 
While the visitors' squad remained unchanged from their previous match, Lasith Malinga replaced Alzarri Joseph in the Mumbai team.
 
Mumbai is currently placed fourth while Kohli's team lies at the bottom of the league points table.
 
Playing XI:
 
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Parthiv Patel (wicket-keeper), Virat Kohli (Captain), AB de Villiers, Marcus Stoinis, Moeen Ali, Akshdeep Nath, Pawan Negi, Umesh Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Navdeep Saini, Mohammed Siraj
 
Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (Captain), Quinton de Kock, Suryakumar Yadav, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Krunal Pandya, Rahul Chahar, Jason Behrendorff, Lasith Malinga, Jasprit Bumrah
 
IANS
 

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Karthik beat Pant on wicket-keeping skills: Prasad

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BCCI chief selector M. S. K Prasad on Monday made it clear that wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik will not automatically start in the playing XI in the World Cup and will only get a chance when M. S. Dhoni gets injured.
 
Announcing the 15-member India squad for the prestigious quadrennial event to be held in England and Wales, Prasad said that Karthik's wicket-keeping skills and ability to handle pressure resulted in him being picked over Rishabh Pant.
 
"We were all in unison that either Pant or DK will come in only when Mahi is injured. In an important game, wicket-keeping is also important. That's the reason we went with Dinesh Karthik," he said. 
 
The chief selector also heaped praises on Pant and said that the left-handed batsman is full of talent. "Pant is full of talent. There's a lot of time for him. It's just unfortunate that he's missed out. Under pressure, we have seen Dinesh Karthik finishing matches. That scored for him," Prasad stated.
 
Vijay Shankar has been included in the squad as the number four batsman instead of Ambati Rayadu while Ravindra Jadeja has been picked as the third spinner instead of a fourth pacer. 
 
Speaking over Shankar's inclusion, Prasad said that the 26-year-old all-rounder from Tamil Nadu gives "three dimensions" to the team. 
 
"After the Champions Trophy, we have tried quite a few middle-order batsmen, which also included Karthik, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey. We did give a few more chances to Rayudu but Vijay Shankar gives three dimensions. He can bat, if the conditions are overcast he can bowl, plus he is a fielder. We are looking at Vijay Shankar as a number four batsman. Now we have plenty of options for that slot."
 
K. L. Rahul, who has been included as the reserve opener, can bat in the middle order, too, if the team management needs, stated the BCCI chief selector. 
 
Four additional medium pacers will travel to England with the team as practice net bowlers, said Prasad. 
 
India will begin their World Cup campaign against South Africa on June 5.
 
Squad: Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, K.L. Rahul, Virat Kohli (c), M.S. Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav, Vijay Shankar, Hardik Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Ravindra Jadeja, Dinesh Karthik.
 
IANS
 

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Sensex up on easing trade tension, monsoon forecast

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Signs of easing US-China trade tension and expectation of cooling inflation following Met department's forecast of near-normal monsoon aided the benchmark Sensex to close 138 points higher on Monday.
 
The Nifty IT and metal index led the gains on the bourses. While metal stocks rose on cooling US-China trade tension and encouraging China's trade data released over the weekend, the export-oriented IT stocks gained owing to the weakening rupee.
 
TCS led the gains on the Sensex as the investors reacted positively to its fourth quarter earning outcome of Friday. It finished nearly 5 percent higher. Infosys, on the contrary, fell steeply after it missed Dalal Street's earning expectations.
 
The S&P BSE Sensex advanced 138.73 points or 0.36 percent to 38,905.84. The broad-based Nifty gained 46.90 points or 0.40 percent to end at 11,690.35.
 
"Market traded on a positive note as expectation of US-China trade agreement and a likely turnaround in domestic earnings steered the sentiment. IT index outperformed due to weak rupee and optimism in earnings growth," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services.
 
"WPI inflation inched to 3.18 percent in March due to rise in food prices, while India Meteorological Department (IMD)'s forecast of near-normal monsoon may ease the concerns over inflation." 
 
IT heavyweights reacted on expected lines, with Infosys falling due to guidance cut, while TCS rose after posting strong numbers. SpiceJet continued its upward move seemingly benefiting from the woes at rival Jet Airways, said Deepak Jasani of HDFC securities.
 
"Rail Vikas Nigam seemed to have attracted institutional buying after its debut last week. The stock rose almost 20 percent."
 
IANS
 

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Sensex, Nifty open marginally higher

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Key equity indices opened marginally higher on Monday led by gains in metal and auto sector stocks.
 
All the sectoral indices on the BSE traded in the green.
 
The Sensex of the BSE opened at 38,805.54 from its previous close at 38,767.11 on Friday.
 
At 9.31 a.m., the Sensex traded at 38,845.89 higher by 78.78 points or 0.20 percent.
 
The Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) opened at 11,667.00 after closing at 11,643.45 on Friday.
 
The Nifty traded at 11,668.15 during the morning trade session, up 24.70 points or 0.21 percent.
 
IANS
 

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Buttler shines in Royals' 4-wicket win over Mumbai

Rajasthan Royals finally managed to script their second victory of the 2019 Indian Premier League (IPL) as Jos Buttler clattered 89 off 43 balls before Shreyas Gopal (13 off 7) rescued his side with the bat to beat Mumbai Indians by four wickets in yet another edge-of-the-seat contest at the Wankhede Stadium, here on Saturday.
 
Chasing a competitive 188 for victory, the visitors were comfortably placed at 147/1 in 13.1 overs. However, Krunal Pandya and Jasprit Bumrah rocked the Rajasthan middle-order as they tumbled to 174/6 in the 19th over before Gopal came to their rescue.
 
Rajasthan openers Ajinkya Rahane and Buttler were off to a watchful start and maintained a decent run-rate as the scorecard read 28/0 after three overs. The duo added another 31 runs in the next three overs before Krunal struck to send back skipper Rahane for 37 (21 balls, 4x6, 6x1).
 
New batsman Sanju Samson, along with Buttler, kept the scoreboard ticking as they took Rajasthan past the 100-run mark in the 10th over. Buttler slowly shifted gears as he smashed medium pacer Alzarri Joseph for 28 runs in the 13th over with Rajasthan placed at 146/1.
 
Rahul Chahar then gave Mumbai the much-needed breakthrough, as he got rid of the dangerous Buttler in the 14th over. While trying to clear the fence, Buttler (89; 43 balls, 4x8, 6x7) holed out to Suryakumar Yadav at the long-off fence.
 
Samson kept the runs flowing before Bumrah packed him back in the 17th over with Rajasthan needing 18 off the last three overs.
 
Things turned ugly for the visitors as Krunal struck twice in the 18th over, accounting for Rahul Tripathi (1) and Liam Livingstone (1), before Bumrah made the situation worse for Rajasthan by dismissing Steve Smith (12) in the next over.
 
With six needed off the final over, Shreyas Gopal held his nerve to pick a couple of runs in the first ball before smashing Hardik Pandya for a boundary in the third delivery to help Rajasthan clinch a thriller.
 
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For Mumbai, Krunal (3/34) and Bumrah (2/23) were the picks of the bowlers.
 
Earlier, put in to bat first, Mumbai piled up 187/5 in their 20 overs.
 
Quinton de Kock stole the show with the bat as he hit a 52-ball 81 (4x6, 6x4) to set the tone for the home team. While de Kock was dismissed in the 19th over, Hardik Pandya carried forward the onslaught to finish with an unbeaten 28 off just 11 balls (4x1, 6x3).
 
The common adage goes that morning shows the day, and the MI innings was a perfect testimony to that. With regular skipper Rohit Sharma back in the XI, he opened the batting with de Kock and the two took the Royals bowling to the cleaners right from the word go.
 
Such was their domination that MI raced to 57 without losing a wicket in just six overs. They played smart cricket and latched onto the bad balls to ensure that the RR bowlers paid the price when they erred in length. The two were in such good form that even the otherwise economical Jofra Archer went for 12 off his first over of the game.
 
But Archer had something to celebrate when he dismissed Rohit for a 32-ball 47 (4x6, 6x1). Looking to up the ante after reaching a comfortable 92/0 after 10 overs, Rohit perished as he looked to hit Archer out of the park in the 11th over. Jos Buttler completed an easy catch at long-on as Sanju Samson wore the wicketkeeping gloves again.
 
Coming in at No. 3, Suryakumar Yadav too looked to build on the strong start, but managed to score just 16 off 10 balls before Dhawal Kulkarni cleaned him up. Kieron Pollard too failed to make much of the opportunity as he was dismissed by Archer, with the batsman looking to hit the West Indies-born English player out of the park.
 
De Kock though held the fort and kept picking the timely boundaries before Archer finally dismissed him as the southpaw looked to clear the long-off boundary in the penultimate over, only to be caught by Buttler who took a brilliant running catch.
 
Losing wickets at regular intervals as they tried to finish with a flourish, MI managed to score 61 runs in the last five overs for the loss of three wickets.
 
Brief scores: Rajasthan Royals 188/6 in 19.3 overs (Jos Buttler 89, Ajinkya Rahane 37; Krunal Pandya 3/34) beat Mumbai Indians 187/5 (Quinton de Kock 81, Rohit Sharma 47; Jofra Archer 3/39) by 4 wickets.
 
IANS
 

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IPL: Mumbai ride De Kock's 81 to post 187/5 against Rajasthan

It was a good toss to lose for Mumbai Indians (MI) at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday as they piled up 187/5 against Rajasthan Royals (RR) after being put in to bat first in their Indian Premier League (IPL) clash on Saturday.
 
Quinton de Kock stole the show with the bat as he hit a 52-ball 81 (4x6, 6x4) to set the tone for the home team. While de Kock was dismissed in the 19th over, Hardik Pandya carried forward the onslaught to finish with an unbeaten 28 off just 11 balls (4x1, 6x3).
 
The common adage goes that morning shows the day, and the MI innings was a perfect testimony to that. With regular skipper Rohit Sharma back in the XI, he opened the batting with de Kock and the two took the Royals bowling to the cleaners from the word go.
 
Such was their domination that MI raced to 57 without losing a wicket in just six overs. They played smart cricket and latched onto the bad balls to ensure that the RR bowlers paid the price when they erred in length. The two were in such good form that even the otherwise economical Jofra Archer went for 12 off his first over of the game.
 
But Archer had something to celebrate when he dismissed Rohit for a 32-ball 47 (4x6, 6x1). Looking to up the ante after reaching a comfortable 92/0 after 10 overs, Rohit perished as he looked to hit Archer out of the park in the 11th over. Jos Buttler completed an easy catch at long-on as Sanju Samson wore the wicketkeeping gloves again.
 
Coming in at No. 3, Suryakumar Yadav too looked to build on the strong start, but managed to score just 16 off 10 balls before Dhawal Kulkarni cleaned him up. Kieron Pollard too failed to make much of the opportunity as he was dismissed by Archer, with the batsman looking to hit the West Indies-born English player out of the park.
 
De Kock, though, held the fort and kept picking the timely boundaries before Archer finally dismissed him as the southpaw looked to clear the long-off boundary in the penultimate over, only to be caught by Buttler who took a brilliant running catch.
 
Losing wickets at regular intervals as they tried to finish with a flourish, MI managed to score 61 runs in the last five overs for the loss of three wickets.
 
Brief scores: Mumbai Indians 187/5 (Quinton de Kock 81, Rohit Sharma 47; Jofra Archer 3/39)
 
IANS
 

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India’s forex reserves rise by $ 1.876 billion to $ 413.781 billion

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Continuing an uptrend for the eighth consecutive week, India’s foreign exchange reserves rose by $ 1.876 billion to $ 413.781 billion during the week ended April 5, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said here today.
 
The country’s forex reserves had soared by a whopping $ 5.237 billion to $ 411.905 billion during the previous week.
 
In its weekly statistical supplement issued here today, the central bank said that foreign currency assets, which constitute a major chunk of the forex reserves, had gone up by $ 2.062 billion to $ 386.116 billion during the week.
 
Foreign currency assets expressed in US dollar terms include the effect of appreciation or depreciation of non-US currencies such as the euro, pound and yen held in the reserves.
 
According to the bulletin, the country’s gold reserves decreased by $ 182.6 million to # 23.226 billion, while its special drawing rights (SDRs) went down by $ 0.1 million to $ 1.4555 billion.
 
India’s reserve position in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) decreased by $ 2.5 million to $ 2.984 billion, the bulletin added.
 
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Confident Mumbai to host lacklustre Rajasthan

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A confident Mumbai Indians will look to consolidate their position in the Indian Premier League (IPL) points table when they host a lacklustre Rajasthan Royals at the Wankhede Stadium here on Saturday.
 
Mumbai have won their last three games and are placed third on the table with four wins from six games while their opponents have managed to win just one game so far and lie in the seventh place.
 
In the absence of regular skipper Rohit Sharma, Kieron Pollard led Mumbai from the front and came up with two match-winning performances. He was ably supported by Alzarri Joseph, who has been the find of the tournament.
 
A leg injury had forced Rohit to miss their game against Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) and it remains to be seen whether the skipper has fully recovered or not. In the game against Punjab where Mumbai were chasing a mammoth 198 for victory, Pollard smashed a 31-ball 83 to ensure another victory for the three-time champions.
 
Joseph, who had a dream debut after returning with the best IPL figures of 6/12 against Sunrisers Hyderabad, played a crucial cameo down the order against Punjab to help Mumbai cross the line in time.
 
On Saturday, all eyes will once again be on Pollard and Joseph, who are currently in top form.
 
If Rohit comes back to the playing eleven, it will further strengthen Mumbai's batting line-up, which features some dependable names like Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Quinton de Kock and Ishan Kishan.
 
Coming to Rajasthan, it seems nothing is going their way as they lost a nail-biter against defending champions Chennai Super Kings on Thursday, thanks to Mitchell Santner's last ball six which kept the yellow brigade at the top of the table.
 
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Rajasthan would once again bank on Jofra Archer, who conceded just 19 runs from his four overs, giving his team a chance to defend a modest 152 against the star-studded Chennai team.
 
Shreyas Gopal has also been amongst the wickets after picking up eight from six games. The leg-spinner, however, failed to perform against the yellow brigade and would have to step up in another high-profile class.
 
Rajasthan's batting includes skipper Ajinkya Rahane, Sanju Samson, Steve Smith and Jos Buttler and with the league reaching the half-way mark, this would be the right time for them to deliver.
 
Rajasthan pacers Jaydev Unadkat and Dhawal Kulkarni, along with Shreyas also need to come out with something special if they want to stay alive in the tournament.
 
Overall, looking at the recent past, Mumbai will be the favourites on Saturday. However, with some stars in their ranks, Rajasthan could also cause an upset.
 
Squads:
 
Mumbai Indians: Rohit Sharma (Captain), Quinton de Kock (wicket-keeper), Suryakumar Yadav, Yuvraj Singh, Kieron Pollard, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Mitchell McClenaghan, Jason Behrendorff, Mayank Markande, Rahul Chahar, Jasprit Bumrah, Alzarri Joseph, Anmolpreet Singh, Siddhesh Lad, Ankul Roy, Evin Lewis, Pankaj Jaiswal, Ben Cutting, Ishan Kishan, Aditya Tare, Rasikh Salam, Barinder Sran, Jayant Yadav
 
Rajasthan Royals: Ajinkya Rahane (Captain), Steve Smith, Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, Jos Buttler, Ashton Turner, Ish Sodhi, Oshane Thomas, Liam Livingstone, Sanju Samson (wicket-keeper), Shubham Ranjane, Stuart Binny, Shreyas Gopal, Sudhesan Midhun, Jaydev Unadkat, Prashant Chopra, Mahipal Lomror, Aryaman Birla, Riyan Parag, Dhawal Kulkarni, Krishnappa Gowtham, Varun Aaron, Shashank Singh, Manan Vohra, Rahul Tripathi
 
IANS
 

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Sensex ends higher ahead of Q4 results, macro data

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Ahead of the fourth quarter results of IT heavyweights Infosys and TCS, and key macro data release, major equity indices ended the week on a higher note led by gains in banking stocks.
 
The BSE Sensex closed 160.10 points or 0.41 percent higher at 38,767.11. The broader Nifty finished 46.75 points or 0.40 percent higher at 11,643.45.
 
"Market turned positive despite a weak rupee as investors remain focused on earnings (season) which will kick-start today with IT heavyweights. Banks outperformed as today's CPI inflation data is expected to be under RBIs targeted level and is likely to pick up in credit growth," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services 
 
"Earnings season will give direction to the market while investors are also keen on the ongoing election to gain confidence."
 
SpiceJet stocks surged over 10 percent after SpiceJet said it is set to induct 16 Boeing aircraft on lease in the next 10 days.
 
Ahead of the fourth quarter results, Infosys and TCS ended on a flat note. DHFL fell 3 percent after Brickwork's ratings downgrade. ITC finished as the top gainer on the Sensex.
 
On the week gone by, Sanjeev Zarbade, VP - PCG Research, Kotak Securities, said that Indian markets are steady as investors remained hopeful of a decent 4QFY19 earnings season and a favourable outcome of the general elections. 
 
He further added that "at the same time, risks in the form of higher crude oil prices have increased".
 
IANS
 

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Equity indices open in green, Sensex up 95 points

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The key Indian equity indices opened on a positive note on Friday, with the Sensex gaining around 95 points.
 
Healthy buying in the oil and gas and IT stocks helped the indices rise, while a largely negative global market capped gains in the domestic market, analysts said.
 
At 9.41 a.m., the BSE Sensex traded at 38,702.46, higher by 95.45 points or 0.25 per cent from the previous close of 38,607.01 points.
 
It had opened at 38,692.06, and so far touched an intra-day high of 38,721.01 and low of 38,635.76 points.
 
The Nifty50 on the National Stock Exchange was at 11,624.75, higher by 28.05 points or 0.24 per cent from the previous close of 11,596.70 points.
 
IANS
 

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Shrinking Jet cancels international departures for one night

With its fleet size further shrinking to 14 aircraft, debt-ridden Jet Airways on Thursday suspended long-haul West-bound flight departures for one night and invited government scrutiny over the airline's regulatory compliance.
 
The development came after the once-premier airline was left with only 14 aircraft from around 120 last year, triggering speculation over its survival as a lengthy stake sale process continued.
 
On Thursday, senior government officials said that they were closely monitoring the operational situation at Jet to ensure its compliance with overseas flying rules. 
 
But by the end of the day, the airline itself cancelled long-haul West-bound international departures for one night.
 
According to airline insiders, only long-haul West-bound international departures have been called-off from Thursday night to Friday morning.
 
"Long-haul international departures have been called-off for one night. The situation is dynamic but the majority of the current operations remain intact," an airline official told IANS in Mumbai.
 
Earlier in the day, official sources said that the airline was currently operating only about 14 aircraft -- down from 26 last week -- and this might lead to suspension of its international operations.
 
As per rules, an airline needs to have a minimum of 20 aircraft to be eligible to operate international flights.
 
Till recently, the airline operated 26 aircraft, including Airbus A330s, Boeing 777s, 737-800 and ATRs, to various destinations like London, Toronto, Singapore, Amsterdam, Paris, Bangkok and domestic sectors like Mumbai-Delhi, among others.
 
It apparently owns 16 out of these 26 aircraft.
 
In another development, some aircraft lessors on Thursday withdrew their de-registration request with the government. 
 
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If these aircraft came back to operation, aviation experts said that Jet could again have 21 aircraft in its fleet, the bare minimum required for overseas services.
 
On its part, the airline has cancelled operations to and from Singapore and its flights to Kolkata and the Northeast.
 
"#ADVISORY: @jetairways (9W) has suspended its services to and from Singapore until further notice. Passengers are advised to contact their booking agent or the airline directly (info@jetairways.com) for available options," the Changi Airport in Singapore tweeted.
 
Jet said in a statement: "Jet Airways' flight 9W 615 Mumbai to Kolkata and 9W 675 Kolkata to Guwahati of tomorrow April 12, 2019, has been cancelled due to operational reasons.
 
"Similarly, 9W 676 Dehradun to Kolkata via Guwahati has been cancelled on the same date until further notice. Guests have been duly informed and refunds are being processed. Jet Airways sincerely regrets inconvenience caused to its guests."
 
Jet Airways is in the midst of a severe liquidity crisis that has affected its operations and resulted in the grounding of several of its aircraft.
 
The latest development came a day after lenders of the debt-ridden airline tweaked the terms for stake sale and also extended the submission deadline for expression of interest (EoI) bids from prospective buyers.
 
At present, the airline owes over Rs 8,000 crore to a consortium of lenders led by the State Bank of India.
 
Last Tuesday, the airline was served a legal notice by a section of its pilots demanding payment of salaries, due since January 1, 2019, by April 14.
 
Subsequently, its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Vinay Dube said that the company is working with the lenders on the balance sheet restructuring plan and will inform the employees about the progress of the process by early next week.
 
Besides the employees, the airline's aircraft lessors, too, are upset with the current financial situation, with some of them requesting the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to de-register their aircraft leased to the company.
 
The de-registration request section on the DGCA's website on Thursday showed that lessors have applied to de-register 14 aircraft owing to unpaid dues. However, some lessors have also withdrawn their de-registration request. 
 
IANS
 

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Etihad, Goyal likely to bid for Jet, NIIF interested: Sources

Even as former Jet Airways' Chairman Naresh Goyal is expected to submit initial bids to purchase stake in the airline, the state-run National Investment and Infrastructure Fund Limited (NIIF) has shown interest in the cash-strapped carrier's stake sale initiated by the lenders' consortium, sources privy to the development said on Thursday.
 
According to industry insiders, the UAE-based Etihad Airways has also shown interest in the Jet stake sale and is in touch with SBI Caps, the firm mandated to carry out the sale on behalf of the banks' consortium. 
 
"It is very likely that Goyal will participate in this particular process. However, an NCLT (National Company Law Tribunal adjudicating in insolvency cases) process will not allow ex-promoters to participate in the stake sale," an industry source told IANS in New Delhi. 
 
"Etihad is also expected to put in their bid by Thursday evening. NIIF has been in touch with the lenders. They are an exempted entity and they do not need to send in their EoI (expression of interest) to participate in the process," he said. 
 
Current regulations exempt NIIF or wealth funds from going through the initial process of stake sale, like submission of EoIs. 
 
"As qualified bidders, they (NIIF) have been given the right under the current regulations," another source said. 
 
"Till yesterday (Wednesday) there were 5 bids. Lenders are confident of getting a total of around 10 bids by the end of the EoI submission deadline on Friday." 
 
On Wednesday, the lenders of the debt-ridden airline tweaked the terms of the stake sale and also extended the submission deadline for EoI bids from prospective buyers. 
 
As per a clarification document issued by investment banking major SBI Capital Markets (SBI Cap) on Wednesday, prospective buyers can acquire the company or effect a change in its management control. 
 
The prospective buyers would also be required to furnish solvency certificates. 
 
Through another 'clarification' document, the last date for EoI submission was extended from 6 p.m. on Wednesday to 6 p.m. on Friday (April 12).
 
The issue of further fund infusion into the airline also hangs in the balance, as the lenders will decide whether to pump in more capital based on their assessment of the response to the EoI. 
 
According to the document, the last date for submission of queries has also been extended to April 11. 
 
"While all soft copies of the EoIs are required to be submitted by the due date, the hard copies may be submitted by April 16, 2019," it said. 
 
The lenders have offered stake ranging from 31.2 to 75 percent of the company on a fully diluted basis. 
 
Currently, the airline owes Rs 8,000 crore to the lenders' consortium led by the state-run State Bank of India (SBI). 
 
Goyal had stepped down from the board of the airline and ceded majority control to the SBI-led consortium on March 25. 
 
IANS
 

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Markets end flat over growth concerns

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Key equity indices closed on a flat note on Thursday over concerns of global growth after the International Monetary Fund cut the global growth forecast. Caution was also seen in view of the first phase of general elections.
 
Besides, analysts said that markets were largely dull as investors were cautious ahead of the beginning of the fourth quarter results.
 
Banking sector stocks witnessed heavy selling pressure while the IT sector also declined. However, auto stocks gained. 
 
The BSE Sensex settled 21.66 points or 0.06 percent higher at 38,607.01 while the Nifty finished 12.40 points higher or 0.11 percent at 11,596.70.
 
"Market was range bound and finally settled with minor gains as investors stayed cautious at the start of the initial phase of polling and remained watchful ahead of the announcement of CPI and IIP data on Friday. Pick up in auto sales aided the sector to gain investor's attention," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services.
 
On the global front, Nair said economic growth remains a concern but Fed minutes reiterating the dovish view on rates will provide support to emerging markets like India.
 
TCS and Infosys both finished lower ahead of its earnings results on Friday. With the two results, fourth quarter results will begin.
 
IANS
 

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Key Indian equity market indices open in green

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Despite a muted trend in Asian markets, the key Indian equity market indices on Thursday opened higher as the first phase of the Lok Sabha Polls began with voting in 91 seats.
 
The Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE, which had closed at 38,585.35 points on Wednesday, opened higher at 38,621.58 points.
 
Minutes into trading, it was quoting at 38,574 points, down by 11.35 points or 0.03 per cent.
 
At the National Stock Exchange (NSE), the broader Nifty 50, which had closed at 11,584.30 points on Wednesday, was quoting at 11,581.60 points, down by 2.70 points or 0.02 per cent.
 
As many as 28 stocks advanced in the Nifty 50 index while 22 stocks declined. In the BSE Sensex, 16 stocks including Tata Motors, ONGC, ITC were trading in green while 14 stocks including HDFC, TCS were trading in red at 9.20 a.m.
 
Indian equities fell sharply on Wednesday after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) revised down the global growth forecast fuelling fears of a global slowdown. Investors were also cautious ahead of the polls which began on Thursday morning.
 
Caution was also seen among investors ahead of the start of earnings season and for fresh trade tensions between the US and the EU.
 
The Sensex was down by 353.87 points, or 0.91 per cent, at the Wednesday's closing. In the day's trade, the barometer 30-scrip sensitive index had touched a high of 38,950.45 points and a low of 38,542.28 points. The Nifty, too was down by 87.65 points, or 0.75 per cent.
 
On Thursday, Asian indices were showing mostly a negative trend. Japan's Nikkei 225 was quoting in red, down by 0.22 per cent while Hang Seng was also trading in red, down by 1.09 per cent and South Korea's Kospi was down by 0.22 per cent. China's Shanghai Composite was also quoting in red, down by 1.20 per cent.
 
Overnight, Nasdaq closed in green, up by 0.69 per cent while FTSE 100 was down by 0.05 per cent at the closing on Wednesday.
 
IANS
 

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Never thought SOTY sequel will happen so soon: Varun Dhawan

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Actor Varun Dhawan, who made his Hindi film debut with 'Student of The Year', said he never thought that the sequel of his romantic-comedy drama film will happen so soon.
 
Dhawan was interacting with the media to promote 'Kalank' along with his co-actors Alia Bhatt, Aditya Roy Kapur and Sonakshi Sinha in Mumbai on Wednesday.
 
Dhawan, Bhatt and Sidharth Malhotra made their Hindi film debut with 'Student of The Year', which released in 2012.
 
On Wednesday, the makers of 'Student of The Year 2' released posters of the film and the film is going to release in May.
 
Talking about the film, Varun said, "I think Tiger (Shroff), Ananya (Panday) and Tara (Sutaria) are looking superb in the film. Alia, Sid (Sidharth Malhotra) and I are equally proud and happy about it. We never thought that there will be a sequel to our film and that too really soon. People still call us 'student' and I don't think that tag will go away from us and we never know in 'Student of The Year 3' we might go back to school."
 
Talking about audience response to the trailer and songs of 'Kalank', Varun said, "This is one of the biggest films of our film career and only seven days are left for the release of the film, so we are very nervous and excited about it. We haven't seen the film yet."
 
"I feel audience have huge expectations from this film because it has a huge cast and it's huge in its scale. People have appreciated the trailer and songs of the film so, hopefully on April 17, they will like the film as well," he added.
 
Talking about his character in the film, Varun said, "Zafar is a very interesting character and it is one of the important characters of my film career. I think we all have done justice to our respective characters. I hope we have stayed true to the vision of Abhishek Verman, Karan Johar, Sajid Nadiadwala and Fox Star Studios."
 
'Student of the Year 2' is directed by Punit Malhotra and produced by Karan Johar, Hiroo Yash Johar and Apoorva Mehta under the banner of Dharma Productions. The film will be distributed by Fox Star Studios.
 
The film stars Tiger Shroff, debutants Tara Sutaria and Ananya Panday.
 
It is set to release on May 10, 2019.
 
IANS
 

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