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Bhushan Power fraud: Allahabad Bank down 11%

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In reaction to the Rs 1,774.82 crore Bhushan Power & Steel Ltd (BPSL) fraud that Allahabad Bank reported at the weekend, its scrips fell by over 11 per cent during the early trade on Monday.
 
At 9.22 a.m., the state-run Allahabad Bank was trading 11.24 per cent lower at Rs 41.85 on the BSE.
 
After the Punjab National Bank, Allahabad Bank on Saturday informed the stock exchanges that it has been defrauded by Bhushan Power & Steel Ltd (BPSL) to the tune of Rs 1,774.82 crore.
 
"On the basis of forensic audit investigation findings and CBI filing FIR, on suo motu basis, against the company and its directors, alleging diversion of funds from banking system by the bank's borrower, namely Bhushan Power & Steel Ltd (BPSL), a fraud of Rs 1,774.82 crore has been reported by the bank to the Reserve Bank of India," the company said.
 
Allahabad Bank, however, added that it has already made provisions amounting to Rs 900.20 crore against the exposure in BPSL.
 
"It has been observed that the company has misappropriated bank funds, manipulated books of accounts to raise funds from consortium lender banks. At present, the case is at the NCLT which is in advanced stage and the bank expects good recovery in the account," the bank added.
 
The Allahabad Bank fraud came to light within a week of another public sector bank, PNB, reporting that it has been cheated by Bhushan Power to the tune of Rs 3,805.15 crore.
 
IANS
 

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Allahabad Bank says defrauded of Rs 1,775 cr by Bhushan Power & Steel

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After Punjab National Bank, Allahabad Bank on Saturday said that it has been defrauded by Bhushan Power & Steel Ltd (BPSL) to the tune of Rs 1,774.82 crore.
 
The bank said in a regulatory filing that "on the basis of forensic audit investigation findings and CBI filing FIR, on suo motu basis, against the company and its directors, alleging diversion of funds from banking system by the bank's borrower, namely Bhushan Power & Steel Ltd (BPSL), a fraud of Rs 1,774.82 crore has been reported by the bank to the Reserve Bank of India".
 
The state-run bank said that it has already made provisions amounting to Rs 900.20 crore against the exposure in BPSL.
 
"It has been observed that the company has misappropriated bank funds, manipulated books of accounts to raise funds from consortium lender banks. At present, the case is at the NCLT which is in advance stage and the Bank expects good recovery in the account," the bank added.
 
The Allahabad Bank fraud has come to light within a week of another public sector bank reporting that it has been cheated by Bhushan Power. Last week, Punjab Nation Bank reported another fraud worth Rs 3,805.15 crore by Bhushan Power & Steel Ltd to the RBI.
 
IANS
 

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Films Division to have fortnightly public screenings of acclaimed documentary films

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Film-lovers now have an opportunity to watch acclaimed documentary films at public screenings, as well as interact with the director/curator of the films with the launch of Kshitij, a documentary film club by the Films Division, in association with Indian Documentary Producer’s Association (IDPA).
 
The public screenings will be organized on the 2nd and 4th Friday of every month from 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm at Films Division Complex, followed by a short interaction of the audience with the director/curator of the film.
 
Films Division, established in 1948, has been relentlessly striving to maintain a record of the social, political and cultural imaginations and realities of the country on film. For more than seven decades, it has been actively working in encouraging and promoting a culture of film-making in India that respects the individual vision and social commitment. It holds more than 8000 titles including priceless INRs (Indian News Review), documentaries, short films and animation films.
 
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India’s forex reserves soar by $ 2.232 billion to record high of $ 429.911 billion

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India’s foreign exchange reserves rose by $ 2.232 billion to touch a record high of $ 429.911 billion during the week ended July 5, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said here today.
 
The country’s forex reserves had gone up by $ 1.262 billion to $ 427.678 billion in the previous week.
 
In its weekly statistical supplement issued here, the central bank said that foreign currency assets, which constitute a major chunk of the foreign exchange reserves, had risen by $ 906.8 million to $ 400.809 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 increased by $ 1.346 billion to $ 24.304 billion, while its special drawing rights (SDR) decreased by $ 4.7 million to $ 1.4515 billion.
 
India’s reserve position in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) went down by $ 15.3 million to $ 3.3465 billion, the bulletin added.
 
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KPR Mills withdraws share buyback proposal

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Garment exporter KPR Mills on Friday became the first company to have withdrawn its buyback proposal due to the 20 per cent tax proposed on buyback obligations in the Finance Bill.
 
The company had proposed a buyback offer (one of the preferred ways of paying shareholders as against dividends) of up to 37,50,784 equity shares.
 
The buyback route would help companies avoid dividend distribution tax (DDT) until recently when an additional tax of 20 per cent in case of buyback of shares by listed companies was proposed in the Finance Bill.
 
"We hereby inform you that we have today (Friday) filed with SEBI our communication conveying that the increase in the amount of buyback obligation due to the tax proposal in the Finance Bill 2019 was neither contemplated nor prevailing at the time of the consideration and the approvals of the Board and Shareholders," the company said in a BSE filing.
 
"We are not permitted to meet the buyback obligations beyond the amount approved by the Board of Directors and Shareholders of the Company and the same can also be effected only with the borrowed funds, which is prohibited by law. In the above circumstance, we are unable to file the 'Letter of Offer ' and go forward with the proposal, which has been intimated to SEBI," KPR Mills added.
 
IANS

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BSE Sensex down 40 pts ahead of CPI, IIP

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The Sensex and the Nifty traded slightly lower during the early trade on Friday ahead of the release of key data points, Consumer Price Index (CPI) and Index of industrial production (IIP).
 
IIP data for May and CPI inflation for June will be released on Friday. Investors will also take cues from the trade data to be released by China later in the day.
 
At 9.39 a.m., the Sensex traded 39.91 points lower at 38,783.20 while the Nifty was down 4.60 points at 11,578.30.
 
Sensex opened at 38,941.10 from its previous close of 38,823.11.
 
Besides, investors on Friday will await the quarterly results of IT major Infosys.
 
Markets were in buoyant mood on Thursday as US Fed Chairman Jerome Powell gave his strongest indication yet that the Federal Reserve will slash interest rates at the July 30-31 meeting, said Deepak Jasani of HDFC Securities.
 
IANS
 

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Shah Rukh Khan shares glimpse of 'his' Simba

File photo of Shahrukh Khan
File photo of Shahrukh Khan
Superstar Shah Rukh Khan on Thursday shared a video presenting his son Aryan Khan as Simba from the film "The Lion King".
 
Shah Rukh tweeted the promotional video of the Hindi version of Disney's live-action film, where Aryan is heard introducing himself as Simba, son of Mufasa. 
 
"Mera Simba," Shah Rukh, who will be voicing Mufasa, captioned the image. 
 
The 53-year-old star's close friend and filmmaker Karan Johar tweeted that he got excited hearing Aaryan's voice.
 
"Pardon my excitement! But Aryan is the firstborn in our family! And even just hearing his voice has made me so so excited! And without a bias he sounds amazing," Karan tweeted.
 
"The Lion King" follows the adventures of Simba, who is to succeed his father Mufasa, as King of the Pride Lands, and narrates a tale of how he rises to the occasion despite several attempts to bring him down by his villainous uncle Scar.
 
"The Jungle Book" fame director Jon Favreau has re-imagined the world of Disney's classic to bring alive the new live-action version. He has stayed true to the classic story of Simba and used pioneering filmmaking techniques to bring the iconic characters alive on the big screen in a new way.
 
The film will release in India on July 19 in English, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.
 
IANS

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Sensex ends 266 points higher on Fed's dovish comments

Indian equity markets edged higher on Thursday as US Federal Reserve's dovish comments helped ease the negative sentiments owing to disappointment over the Union Budget.
 
Sensex closed 266.07 points higher at 38,823.11, while the Nifty advanced by 84 point to 11,582.90.
 
"US Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell's dovish comments on Wednesday cemented hopes of an interest rate cut this month in the US and soft interest rate policies across the globe," said Deepak Jasani of HDFC Securities. 
 
"This boosted global stocks, pulled down bond yields and weakened the US dollar. Fears of FPI selling due to the adverse provisions in the Union Budget has abated for the time being," Jasani added.
 
InterGlobe Aviation, the parent company of Indigo, the largest private airline in India slipped 3.07 per cent lower as investors continued to fret over the likelihood of operations getting affected by the conflict among its promoters.
 
Meanwhile, Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) have sold Rs 1,768 crore, in 5 sessions, since the Budget proposals on July 5.
 
IANS

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Sensex up 139 pts, Nifty above 11,540

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The Sensex and the Nifty opened higher on Thursday after US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell hinted at a rate cut.
 
Earlier, strong job data from the US had reduced hopes of an aggressive rate cut.
 
Analysts said that a rate cut would be positive for the emerging markets like India.
 
At 10.08 a.m., the Sensex was trading 138.50 points higher at 38,695.54 from it's previous close of 38,557.04.
 
Sensex opened higher at 38,751.62.
 
The broader Nifty was up 49.90 points or 0.43 per cent to 11,548.80.
 
IndiGo stocks were trading with heavy selling pressure for the second day after the rift between the promoters came out in the open.
 
The scrips of the largest private airline, on the NSE, traded 8.35 per cent lower at 1,281.25 apiece.
 
IANS

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ICICI Securities diversifies its business model; enters digital distribution of assets segment

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ICICI Securities Limited (I-Sec), a technology-based securities and financial products distribution firm, has announced the diversification of its business model by entering the retail asset (loans) distribution business, thereby opening a new revenue stream for the organization.
 
This service is inclusive of products such as personal loan, home loans, loan against property, auto loans, and credit cards offered by ICICI Bank, a press release from the company said.
 
I-Sec, a subsidiary of ICICI Bank, will earn a distribution commission for selling these products through its online (ICICI Direct platform) and offline channels (network of about 200 branches).
 
“With our entry into the fast-growing retail loan distribution space, we have marked our presence in the entire financial planning journey of our customer’s lifecycle - from investment to protection to assets. This is a new revenue stream for us and we are confident that given the robustness of our platform and strength of our distribution, we will provide a lot of value to both our customers as well as principal,” said Mr. Vijay Chandok, MD & CEO, ICICI Securities.
 
"Over 0.5 million I-Sec customers are already pre-approved and credit cleared who can avail of personal loan through the ICICI direct platform without any documentation, which will get credited into their account within 3 seconds. For other categories too like auto and home loans, there are pre-approved offer available to the customer," the release said.
 
Retail credit is a fast growing market in India, worth about Rs. 22 lakh crore, growing at about 17% annually. ICICI Securities’ distribution business covers mutual funds, insurance (life, health and general), corporate FDs, NPS, SGBs, and now retail credit. These products are sold through the trading platform icicidirect.com and also through I-Sec’s 200 branch offices spread across the country. 
 
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Karnataka slug fest peaks; rebels move SC, 2 more Congress MLAs quit

Karnataka's political slug fest intensified on Wednesday, with the rebel Congress and JD(S) MLAs approaching the Supreme Court against the Assembly Speaker's decision not to accept their resignations and the BJP urging Governor Vajubhai Vala to direct a floor test by the H D Kumaraswamy government.
Karnataka Minister D. K. Shivakumar and Congress leaders Naseem Khan and Milind Deora under detention at the University rest house at Kalina in Mumbai on July 10, 2019. (Photo: IANS)
Karnataka Minister D. K. Shivakumar and Congress leaders Naseem Khan and Milind Deora under detention at the University rest house at Kalina in Mumbai on July 10, 2019. (Photo: IANS)
Karnataka's political slugfest intensified on Wednesday, with the rebel Congress and JD(S) MLAs approaching the Supreme Court against the Assembly Speaker's decision not to accept their resignations and the Opposition BJP urging Governor Vajubhai Vala to direct a floor test by the H D Kumaraswamy government.
 
Meanwhile, two more Karnataka Congress legislators, M. T. B. Nagaraj and D. Sudhakar, submitted their resignations on Wednesday, taking to 13 the number of party MLAs who have quit since July 1.
 
If the resignations are accepted, the party's strength in the Assembly will reduce from 79 to 66, including the Speaker.
 
According to sources, 3-4 more party legislators are likely to resign before the 10-day monsoon session of the state legislature beginning Friday here.
 
The Congress, desperate to save its government in Karnataka, raised a storm in Parliament and protested on the roads of Bengaluru, where senior party leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad and K. C. Venugopal were detained along with several party workers while taking out a protest march.
 
High drama was also witnessed in Mumbai where some Congress leaders, including Karnataka Minister D. K. Shivakumar, were detained by the police after they tried to enter a hotel to meet the rebel legislators, who hooted them away.
 
The government's woes increased when a lone legislator of a regional party KPJP and an Independent also resigned and withdrew their support to the ruling coalition, which has a slender majority in the Assembly.
 
After resignation by KPJP MLA and Independent legislator, the combined strength of the ruling allies will be reduced from 117 -- 115 of the Congress-JD-S and one of BSP -- to less than 113, the halfway mark for a simple majority.
 
If all the resignations are accepted, the strength of the Assembly will go down to 209 and the new halfway mark will be 105.
 
However, Speaker K. R. Ramesh Kumar has refused to accept the resignations of the MLAs, saying eight of them were not in the prescribed format and five others needed to explain why their action did not fall under the purview of Anti-Defection law.
 
The 10 MLAs, who have resigned, approached the Supreme Court against the Speaker's decision and sought an urgent hearing on the matter.
 
In their plea filed through senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, the rebel legislators alleged the Speaker was not performing his constitutional duty and deliberately delaying the acceptance of their resignations from the Assembly.
 
A bench, headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, assured Rohatgi that the plea would be heard, but at some later date. The apex court is most likely to hear the matter on Thursday.
 
The MLAs, in the petition, have made two specific prayers before the top court --direct the Speaker to accept the resignations tendered and restrain the Speaker from proceeding with the application on disqualification of the MLAs.
 
The petitioners have also requested the court to pass an order which it may deem fit in connection with the facts and circumstances of the present case.
 
The petition claimed that the Speaker's actions were "vitiated by mala fide as evident in his actions."
 
"Notwithstanding the same and fearing that the Chief Minister may have to tender resignation for want of confidence of the house, the Speaker is acting in a partisan manner to frustrate the will of the house", the petitioners contended.
 
The petitioners contended that the Chief Minister despite being reduced to a minority is refusing to seek a vote of confidence. "And, as a result of the concerted acts between the Speaker and the government, a minority government which does not enjoy the confidence of the House, continues in power illegally. A purposive interpretation of article 164 r/w principles of Parliamentary Sovereignty mandate that the Chief Minister should always command the confidence of the house", said the petition.
 
Referring to the current political situation as extraordinary, the petitioners sought "the court to invoke its extraordinary jurisdiction for upholding the democratic principles as enshrined in the Constitution".
 
The petitioners said they were seeking the court's intervention in the matter to keep all Constitutional authorities within their limits and to ensure that there is no fraud on the Constitution.
 
Attacking the "deliberate delay" caused by the Speaker, the petitioners said his actions are not in compliance with Constitutional democracy.
 
"Any elected Member of the Legislature is entitled, in consultation with his conscience or other attendant circumstances to resign his membership of the Legislature. It is stated that the MLAs disenchanted with the mal-administration under the present dispensation wish to resign," said the petitioners.
 
In Bengaluru, a delegation of Karnataka's BJP met the Governor and urged him to direct the Assembly Speaker to conduct floor test, saying the Congress-JD(S) coalition government has 'lost' majority.
 
"We have petitioned the Governor to direct the Speaker to hold a floor test in the Assembly on Friday when the monsoon session begins as the coalition government lost majority and its Chief Minister H. D. Kumaraswamy has no moral right to continue anymore," BJP's state leader B. S. Yeddyurappa told reporters here.
 
High drama played out in Mumbai, too, where the police detained senior Karnataka Congress leader and minister D. K. Shivakumar and Mumbai Congress leader Milind M. Deora and others outside the Hotel Renaissance, officials said.
 
Shivakumar and Deora were intending to meet the rebel MLAs who have lodged themselves in the hotel after resigning.
 
The Mumbai Police said it had imposed prohibitory orders around the hotel premises and detained these leaders for allegedly flouting the restrictions and took them away in waiting vans.
 
Earlier, Shivakumar, made an emotional appeal to the rebel party MLAs after being hooted by them.
 
"I won't go without meeting my friends. They will call me. Their hearts will break. I am in touch already with them, both our hearts are beating," Shivakumar told reporters.
 
Calling the rebels his "brothers", he termed the crisis as "a family problem", with all of them loving and respecting each other.
 
Referring to the apprehensions of threats expressed by the 10 MLAs in a letter to Mumbai Police Commissioner Sanjay Barve late yesterday, Shivakumar said "there is no question of threatening anyone".
 
IANS
 

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Sensex ends 174 points lower, Indigo loses 10%

The Sensex and the Nifty ended lower after the weak auto sales figures and surging oil prices dampened investor sentiments on Wednesday.
 
The Sensex closed 173.78 points or 0.45 per cent lower at 38,557.04 while the Nifty settled at 11,498.90, down by 57 points. 
 
"Consolidation continued as weak auto sales have dimmed growth expectations while surge in oil prices further impacted the sentiment," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services. 
 
The focus remains on the earnings season where the preliminary subdued results in IT stocks have triggered gradual downgrade in earnings expectations, he added. 
 
Meanwhile, as the higher surcharge on the super-rich, announced in the Budget, roiled the markets as it could affect foreign portfolio investors (FPIs), Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman defended the move in Parliament. 
 
Central Board of Direct Taxation Chairman P. C. Mody, however, said that FPIs and alternative investment funds can opt for a corporate structure to avoid paying the additional surcharge. 
 
Besides, investors reacted to the brewing trade tension between the US and India as US President Donald Trump, for the second time, on Tuesday said that India's tariffs on American products was "no longer acceptable!" 
 
Shares of IndiGo closed over 10 per cent lower after falling as much as 17 per cent on the BSE as the dispute between its promoters came out into the open. 
 
Airline co-promoter Rakesh Gangwal, in his letter to market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) Chairman Ajay Tyagi and other top officials, lamented that IndiGo has started veering off from the core principles and values of governance and sought regulatory intervention from SEBI to resolve the issues. 
 
SpiceJet, Indigo's competitor, gained over 2 per cent to end at Rs 119.60 apiece. 
 
Tata Motors fell 2.66 percent lower at Rs 151.65 as Jaguar Land Rover sales fell 9.6 percent on a yearly basis to 47,060 units.
 
IT major TCS, which declared its quarterly results on Tuesday, ended 1.11 per cent lower, at Rs 2,107.70 apiece as it missed street estimates. 
 
"Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose on Wednesday, as market participants counted on US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell to stay accommodative in his congressional testimony later in the day," said Deepak Jasani of HDFC Securities. 
 
IANS
 

Karnataka: Congress leaders Shivakumar, Deora detained in Mumbai

Amidst high drama, senior Congress leaders D. K. Shivakumar and Milind Deora were on Wednesday detained by the police outside a hotel in Mumbai where rebel MLAs from the ruling coalition in Karnataka are holed up after resigning their seats and plunging the H. D. Kumaraswamy government into a crisis.
D K Shivakumar (File photo: IANS)
D K Shivakumar (File photo: IANS)
Amidst high drama, senior Congress leaders D. K. Shivakumar and Milind Deora were today detained by the police outside a five-star hotel in Mumbai where rebel MLAs from the ruling coalition in Karnataka are holed up after resigning their seats and plunging the H D Kumaraswamy government into a crisis.
 
Shivakumar, the Congress' main troubleshooter and a man of great persuasive skills, had landed up outside Hotel Renaissance in Powai here early this morning but was stopped by the police from entering the hotel.
 
As Shivakumar insisted that he would wait outside the hotel -- where he said he had booked a room for himself -- and a crowd of people, including Congress workers, media persons and others started gathering, the authorities imposed section 144, banning the assembly of four more than four persons, and then detained the Karnataka Minister.
 
Deora, who was until recently the president of the Mumbai Regional Congress Committee and was among those who reached the spot, was also detained by the police.
 
As they were taken away in a police van, Shivakumar shouted to journalists that this was a "misuse of power" by the BJP, which is in power at the Centre as well as in Maharashtra.
 
The Congress and the JD (S) have accused the BJP of engineering the resignations of its MLAs so as to capture power in Karnataka.
 
Police officers who stopped Shivakumar outside the hotel said they were doing so because the rebel MLAs had written a letter saying they feared him.
 
"They are frightened of you. We cannot allow you to enter the hotel because of the letter they have written," a police officer told Shivakumar.
 
Shivakumar, on his part, told the officer and journalists that he would not turn back and would stay there till he was allowed into the hotel and given a chance to meet his colleagues. "I won't go. I will wait here all day," he said.
 
Meanwhile, a group of protesters raised slogans in support of the rebel MLAs and against Shivakumar and shouted, "Go back".
 
"Allow me to go to my room. I want to meet my friends, sit, relax, have coffee with them," Shivakumar said, adding that he was not going to be deterred by the slogans or protests.
 
He also showed to the police and media persons the confirmation of the booking made by him for a room in the hotel.
 
Shivakumar said the manner in which the police had been deployed to prevent him from going into the hotel and meet the MLAs was clear evidence that the BJP was behind their resignations and their travel to and stay in Mumbai.
 
The resignations submitted by the 13 MLAs, including an independent, has brought  the Congress-JD(S) government in Karnataka headed by Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy to the brink of collapse. The Speaker, however, is yet to accept the resignations and has asked the MLAs for explanations and clarifications. 
 
The rebel MLAs had written a letter late last night to the Commissioner of Police, Mumbai alleging that they faced a threat due to the possible visit of Kumaraswamy, Shivakumar and others to Mumbai.
 
"We the following elected members of the legislative assembly of the state of Karnataka are staying at Hotel Renaissance Powai in Mumbai. 
 
"We have heard that Shri Kumaraswamy and D K Shivakumar and others are going to storm in the hotel premises, we feel threatened for the same. We do not want to meet him, kind request to help us in this matter and do not allow them to enter the hotel premises," they said in their letter.
 
The letter was signed by Shivram Hebbar, Pratap Gowda Patil, B. C. Patil, Byrati Basavraj, S. T. Somshekar, Ramesh Jharkiholi, Gopalaiyya, H. Vishwanath, Narayan Gowda and Mahesh Kumutali. 
 
Following this, security in the hotel and around it was tightened and scores of policemen were seen outside its gates.
 
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Congress leader D K Shivakumar stopped outside Mumbai hotel where rebel MLAs are staying

Amidst high drama, senior Congress leader and Karnataka Minister D K Shivakumar was on Wednesday prevented by the police from entering a five-star hotel in Mumbai where several MLAs who have resigned from the ruling Congress-JD (S) coalition in the state are staying.
D K Shivakumar (File photo: IANS)
D K Shivakumar (File photo: IANS)
Amidst high drama, senior Congress leader and Karnataka Minister D K Shivakumar was today prevented by the police from entering a five-star hotel in Mumbai where several MLAs who have resigned from the ruling Congress-JD (S) coalition in the state are staying.
 
Shivakumar, who said he had a room booked in the hotel in his name, was stopped outside the gate of Renaissance Hotel in Powai by the police who said the rebel MLAs had written a letter saying that they feared him.
 
"They are frightened of you. We cannot allow you to enter the hotel because of the letter they have written," a police officer told Shivakumar.
 
Shivakumar, on his part, told the officer and journalists that he would not turn back and would stay there till he was allowed into the hotel and given a chance to meet his colleagues. "I won't go. I will wait here all day," he said.
 
Meanwhile, a group of protesters raised slogans in support of the rebel MLAs and against Shivakumar and shouted, "Go back".
 
"Allow me to go to my room. I want to meet my friends, sit, relax, have coffee with them," Shivakumar said, adding that he was not going to be deterred by the slogans or protests.
 
He also showed to the police and media persons the confirmation of the booking made by him for a room in the hotel.
 
Shivakumar said the manner in which the police had been deployed to prevent him from go into the hotel and meet the MLAs was clear evidence that the BJP was behind their resignations and their travel to and stay in Mumbai.
 
The resignations submitted by the 13 MLAs, including an independent, has brought  the Congress-JD(S) government in Karnataka headed by Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy to the brink of collapse. The Speaker, however, is yet to accept the resignations and has asked the MLAs for explanations and clarifications. 
 
The rebel MLAs had written a letter late last night to the Commissioner of Police, Mumbai alleging that they faced a threat due to the possible visit of Kumaraswamy, Shivakumar and others to Mumbai.
 
"We the following elected members of the legislative assembly of the state of Karnataka are staying at Hotel Renaissance Powai in Mumbai. 
 
"We have heard that Shri Kumaraswamy and D K Shivakumar and others are going to storm in the hotel premises, we feel threatened for the same. We do not want to meet him, kind request to help us in this matter and do not allow them to enter the hotel premises," they said in their letter.
 
The letter was signed by Shivram Hebbar, Pratap Gowda Patil, B. C. Patil, Byrati Basavraj, S. T. Somshekar, Ramesh Jharkiholi, Gopalaiyya, H. Vishwanath, Narayan Gowda and Mahesh Kumutali. 
 
Following this, security in the hotel and around it was tightened and scores of policemen were seen outside its gates.
 
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Indian equity markets open on positive note

The 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) on Wednesday after opening on a negative note turned positive soon after.
 
The Sensex of the BSE opened at 38,701.99 points and touched a high of 38,854.85 points. The Sensex touched a low of 38,610.29 points.
 
On Tuesday the Sensex closed at 38,730.82 points.
 
The Sensex was trading at 38,753.39 points up by 22.57 points or 0.06 per cent in the morning.
 
On the other hand, the broader 50-scrip Nifty at National Stock Exchange (NSE) opened at 11,536.15 points after closing at 11,555.90 points.
 
The Nifty was trading at 11,560.05 points in the morning.
 

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IndiGo stocks crash 17% over promoters' dispute

Shares of IndiGo fell 17 per cent during early trade on Wednesday after the dispute between its promoters came out in the open.
 
At 9.47 a.m., the budget passenger carrier was trading at Rs 1,379.65 apiece, down by Rs 186.10 before hitting an intra-day low of Rs 1,291. 
 
Airline co-promoter and former US Airways Chief Executive and Chairman Rakesh Gangwal came on record to lodge his grievances against various issues pertaining to IndiGo. 
 
In his letter to Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) Chairman Ajay Tyagi and other top officials, Gangwal lamented that IndiGo has started veering off from the core principles and values of governance that made IndiGo what it is today.
 
He raised serious objections to related-party transactions in the company, stating that various fundamental governance norms and laws were not being adhered to. He warned that this will lead to unfortunate outcomes if effective measures are not taken. 
 
Gangwal has sought regulatory intervention from market regulator SEBI to resolve the issues. He, along with his affiliates, hold 37 per cent stake in IndiGo while the other co-promoter, Rahul Bhatia, has 38 per cent equity stake. 
 
SEBI has sought a response from IndiGo on the alleged grievances raised by Gangwal. 
 
IndiGo in its BSE regulatory filing said: "... We inform you that the Board of Directors of lnterGlobe Aviation Limited has received a letter dated July 8, 2019 from Rakesh Gangwal, the copy of which is already with the Stock Exchanges, informing the company that he has written a letter to SEBI seeking regulatory intervention on his alleged grievances". 
 
"SEBI has in the meantime asked the company to give its response to this letter by July 19, 2019, with which the company will comply." 
 
IANS
 

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Rebel Karnataka MLAs in Maharashtra disperse

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In an apparent move to hoodwink their parties, rebel Congress-Janata Dal (S) legislators from Karnataka have spread out in different parts of Maharashtra since Monday, party sources revealed here on Tuesday.
 
A batch of 12 legislators had reached here by a chartered flight on Saturday from Bengaluru, followed by one MLA each on Sunday and Monday, including an independent, and were staying at the Sofitel Hotel in Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC).
 
Late on Monday, all 14 quietly were said to be headed for Goa by road, but midway a few more rebel legislators joined them in Satara.
 
From that group, around a dozen returned to Mumbai and are now staying in the Renaissance Hotel in suburban Powai, while the remaining ones are still in Satara, but may shift to Goa anytime.
 
In another development, senior Congress leader D.K. Shivakumar is likely to come to Mumbai and meet the legislators at the Renaissance Hotel.
 
Though the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has denied any role in the Karnataka political developments, at least two of its local leaders have been seen going in and out of both the Mumbai hotels, adding to the mystery.
 
All the legislators currently on the move now are expected to reach Bengaluru by Friday.
 
IANS
 

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SBI reduces its MCLR by 5 bps from July 10 across all tenors

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State Bank of India (SBI), the country's largest lender, today said it had reduced its Marginal Cost of Funds Based Lending Rate (MCLR) by 5 basis points (bps) from July 10 across all tenors, with the 1-year MCLR coming down from 8.45% to 8.40% per annum.
 
As a result, interest rates on all loans linked to MCLR stand reduced by 5 bps with effect from tomorrow, a press release from SBI said.
 
This is the third rate cut by SBI in the current financial year. With today’s MCLR cut, the reduction in the home loan rates since April 10, 2019 is 20 bps, the release added.
 
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Markets end flat, TCS 2% down ahead of earnings outcome

The BSE Sensex and the NSE Nifty finished on a flat note on Tuesday after heavy selling in the last two sessions over disapointment over the Budget proposals.
 
The Sensex gained 10.25 points to end at 38,730.82 while the Nifty settled at 11,555.90, lower by 2.70 points. Tata Consultancy Services closed 2.05 per cent lower at Rs 2,131.45 per share ahead of its earning announcement. 
 
The proposals for increase minimum public shareholding of listed companies to 35 per cent, tax on buybacks, and especially the surcharge on foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) have not been received well by the investor community.
 
"Lack of real growth in the economy while equity is at premium valuation is impacting the market. IT bellwethers slid ahead of earnings season as anxiety over global growth and trade disputes cast cloud over revenue estimate," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services Ltd.
 
Titan lost 12.25 per cent, the most among the Nifty50 stocks after the company said that its growth, particularly in the jewellery segment, was lower than planned, owing to tough macro-economic environment and very high gold prices "particularly in June".
 
A small positive candle was formed on Tuesday with a long lower shadow. Technically, this pattern indicates a high wave type candlestick pattern. Normally, a formation of such high wave type candle patterns after a reasonable weakness could be viewed for a minor upside bounce, said Nagaraj Shetti, Technical Research Analyst, HDFC Securities.
 
IANS
 

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Sensex down 209 pts, Nifty at 11,481

The Sensex and the Nifty fell during the early trade on Tuesday as the streets continued to react negatively to some of the government's Budget proposals.
 
This is the third straight session of loss after the Union Budget was proposed on Friday.
 
The proposal to increase minimum public shareholding of listed companies to 35 per cent, tax on buybacks, and especially the surcharge on foreign portfolio investors has not been received well by the investor community.
 
At 9.16 a.m., the Sensex was trading 209.24 points lower at 38,511.33. It opened at 38,754.47, from its Monday's close of 38,720.57, when the markets logged record fall and the Sensex ended 792 points lower.
 
The Nifty declined by 77.35 points or 0.67 per cent to 11,481.25.
 
Except for metal and pharma stocks all the sectoral indices were trading in the red.
 
Tata Consultancy Services, set to announce its quarterly results later in the day, was trading 1.52 per cent lower during the early trade.
 
"Equity markets were expecting some kind of fiscal stimulus from the budget but there has been a big disappointment," said Rusmik Oza, Head of Research, Kotak Securities.
 
IANS
 

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Sensex logs heaviest fall in 7 months as Budget fails to deliver

Disappointment over the Budget proposals and muted global markets led the Sensex to log the heaviest fall in seven months on Monday. Both the key equity indices -- Sensex and Nifty -- fell over 2 per cent.
 
Global markets traded lower after US reported strong job data, which faded hopes of an aggressive rate cut by the Federal Reserve.
 
"Equity markets were expecting some kind of fiscal stimulus from the budget but there has been a big disappointment," said Rusmik Oza, Head of Research, Kotak Securities.
 
Oza added that housing was the only segment to get some kind of a stimulus and that the budget had been taken positively by the bond market due to curtailment of the Fiscal Deficit.
 
The 30-scrip Sensex closed 792.82 points or 2.01 per cent lower at 38,720.57 and the broader Nifty50 declined by 252.55 points or 2.14 per cent to 11,558.60.
 
Investor sentiment also took a beating as the second-largest public sector bank, Punjab National Bank's (PNB) on Saturday admitted that it had been defrauded of Rs 3,805.15 crore by Bhushan Power and Steel Ltd (BPSL).
 
This is the second time in 12 months that the state-run bank has been duped. Last year, jeweller Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi had defrauded it of Rs 14,000 crore in one of the biggest bank scams in the country.
 
PNB declined by 11.25 per cent to Rs 76.30 apiece dragging the PSU Bank index, which closed 5.90 per cent lower.
 
Heavy selling was seen in PSU banks such as Bank of India, Union Bank of India and Canara Bank, which were trading over 8 to 10 per cent lower.
 
Canara Bank, Syndicate Bank, Indian Bank and Bank of Baroda declined in the range of 5 to 8 per cent.
 
Auto companies were also major contributors to the fall. Hero MotoCorp Limited and Maruti Suzuki India declined over 4 per cent, the most among the 15 constituent companies on the NSE Auto index.
 
IANS
 

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Heavy rain hits flights at Mumbai airport

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Flight operations were severely hit due to heavy rains and poor visibility at the Mumbai airport on Monday.
 
A Mumbai International Airport Ltd. spokesperson said that on account of fluctuating visibility issues, there were no flight movements.
 
Alhough there were no cancellations, at least three flights were diverted to other airports.
 
In a different rain-related incident, eight persons were hurt when a ground-plus-one-floor tenement crashed in Shivaji Nagar. While three women are admitted to Rajawadi Hospital, five others were already treated.
 
Large parts of the city and suburbs, besides Palghar, Thane and Raigad, were lashed with heavy rains since early Monday morning.
 
Road traffic was affected with snarls at various locations, while suburban trains were working normally.
 
IANS

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Sensex down 420 points; auto, banks stock lose

The Sensex and Nifty lost over 1 per cent during the early trade on Monday following the tabling of the Union Budget on Friday.
 
Nifty PSU Bank index and Nifty auto index fell the most among the 11 sectors.
 
At 9.47 a.m., the Sensex was trading 421.89 points down at 39,091.50.
 
It opened at 39,476.38 from its Friday's close of 39,513.39 when the markets fell after the Budget failed to cheer the investors.
 
The Nifty was down by 116.65 points at 11,694.50.
 
IANS

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Mumbai Congress chief Milind Deora quits

Milind Deora (File photo: IANS)
Milind Deora (File photo: IANS)
In a surprise move, Mumbai Congress President Milind M. Deora abruptly quit from his post on Sunday, barely three months before the crucial Maharashtra Assembly elections.
 
He has recommended a provisional set-up of a collective leadership of three senior leaders to oversee the city unit until the upcoming polls.
 
On his part, Deora is likely to move to New Delhi for a national role in the Congress.
 
According to an aide, Deora had expressed his desire to quit shortly after meeting outgoing Congress President Rahul Gandhi in New Delhi on June 26.
 
"The same was conveyed to Mallikarjun Kharge and K. C. Venugopal, General Secretaries, All India Congress Committee," a statement from Deora's office said.
 
Gandhi had submitted his resignation last month, triggering waves of protests and resignations from all over the country.
 
Deora, a former Union Minister, was appointed President of Mumbai Congress on the eve of 2019 Lok Sabha elections, replacing Sanjay Nirupam.
 
His move is seen as "an expression of solidarity and collective responsibility with outgoing Congress President Gandhi's resignation".
 
However, Deora organised and oversaw Gandhi's visit to Mumbai on July 4.
 
The time that he was given to prepare for the elections was too little and too late, said the aide.
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Nevertheless, during his brief tenure, he united the rank and file of the party and put an end to identity politics in Mumbai Congress, in the hope that the party once again returns to its multilingual, multicultural and socio-economically inclusive ideals.
 
The party, under his leadership, gave a decisive fight to the BJP-Shiv Sena combine in Mumbai, the statement said.
 
"In spite of many constraints, including his own election campaign, Deora was able to support Lok Sabha candidates to put up a strong fight."
 
Deora reiterated that he was "always available to serve the party as a trusted and resourceful lieutenant and looks forward to playing a more important role nationally".
 
He added that political realities have changed since 2019 results and all have to get ready for roles that these times demand.
 
IANS
 

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Mumbai braces for steep parking penalties from Sunday

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Parking will get more difficult than driving from Sunday after the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and Mumbai Traffic Police implement new rules for vehicles parked in no-parking zones with fines ranging from Rs 5,000 to Rs 23,000.
 
This would apply to all vehicles parked within 500 metre radius of the 26 authorised public parking lots and 20 designated BESTS depots in the city.
 
The penalty will comprise the actual fine for illegal parking and towing charges, which will come to a whopping Rs 5000 to Rs 8,300 for two-wheelers and Rs 15,000 to Rs 23,250 for heavy vehicles.
 
BMC's notices proclaiming the new parking fines-cum-towing charges went up in different areas of the city on Friday warning potential offenders, a civic official told IANS, requesting anonymity.
 
The new penalties for medium vehicles shall be Rs 11,000 to Rs 17,600, light motor vehicles Rs 10,000 to Rs 15,100 and for all types of three-wheelers Rs 8,000 to Rs 12,200 per violation.
 
From the minimum amounts, the fines will keep increasing progressively daily for late payment charges till the maximum rates.
 
Mumbai has an estimated vehicle population of around three million comprising all categories.
 
Anticipating brawls between drivers and implementing officials, the BMC has requisitioned services of ex-service personnel and even private security guards to help the traffic police, said the official.
 
Initially, the new parking rules shall be implemented in dense traffic areas and in localities with already sufficient alternative parking facilities. Gradually, it will be extended to all other areas.
 
"This will curb instances of people simply parking anywhere, disappearing for brief to prolonged periods to complete some work before returning, but by that time, traffic is already in chaos, especially on main roads," the official said.
 
IANS

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