New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday extended the ban on the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) for six more weeks.
The order was passed by a bench headed by Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan while hearing a petition filed by the Union government challenging an order passed by a special tribunal set up under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 that lifted a ban on SIMI and its activities.
Justice Geeta Mittal had passed the tribunal order on 6 August. Pursuant to this order, the Union government had approached the apex court, which had ordered a stay on the tribunal ruling on 6 August itself and barred SIMI activities for a period of three weeks till it took up the matter on Monday.
To substantiate its case against SIMI, the Centre had filed an affidavit before the apex court on 20 August and listed around 350 cases registered against the outfit and its members in various states such as Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka, along with depositions of certain witnesses stating that SIMI had connections with international terrorist groups.
The bench set 24 September as the next date to hear the issue.
Ghana to assemble Escorts’ Farmtrac
Accra: Ghana will soon start assembling Escorts Ltd’s range of farm tractors branded Farmtrac at free zone enclaves in Tema.
Ghana was last year given access to more than $500 million (Rs2,180 crore) from the US government’s Millennium Challenge Account and has embarked on a programme to modernize agriculture.
Orkla to double?food sale in India, make purchases
Oslo: Norway’s biggest consumer goods maker Orkla ASA plans to double food sales in India through acquisitions and will expand vegetarian meal production, CEO Dag Opedal said.
The maker of Grandiosa pizzas and Jif cleaner will build MTR Foods Ltd, acquired last year, across India and may sell assets to help fund Asian purchases, Opedal said in an interview at the 354-year-old firm’s Oslo headquarters. “We would like a broader footprint in Asia by building and supporting MTR,” Opedal said. “Our objective is to double the size of operations in India in the coming two to three years. We have more growth opportunities than we could pursue.”
Consumer goods are the company’s second biggest business by sales after aluminium products, and Orkla already has metals and chemicals operations in India. MTR, which exports packaged foods to countries including the US, is mainly present in southern India, and Orkla wants to expand its presence to the north. Indian packaged-food sales stood at $14 billion (Rs61,040 crore), compared with unpackaged sales of $275 billion, according to a Unilever presentation last year.
Former Sebi chairman to head team on MF reform
Mumbai: Capital market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) on Monday announced a 15-member committee that would initiate reforms in the mutual fund (MF) sector. The Mutual Fund Advisory Committee will be headed by former Sebi chairman S.A. Dave.
Some of the others in the high-profile committee are: A.P. Kurian, chairman of the Association of Mutual Funds in India; Milind Barve, managing director, HDFC Asset Management Co. Ltd; Ashu Suyash, chief executive of Fidelity Fund Management Pvt. Ltd; V.P. Chaturvedi, managing director of Tata Asset Management Ltd; N.P. Ghanekar, managing director of JM Financial Asset Management Pvt. Ltd; and S.H. Bhojani, partner at Amarchand Mangaldas.
Piyush Gupta to take over as HT Media CFO
New Delhi: Publisher HT Media Ltd said on Monday that starting first week of September, Piyush Gupta will take over as chief financial officer (CFO) from M.S. Venkataraman.
Chief executive Rajiv Verma said Venkataraman was taking a break from active work life due to health-related issues. Before joining HT Media in December 2007, Venkataraman worked at telecom equipment maker Ericsson in Stockholm. In his last assignment, Gupta was CFO at chewing gum maker Wrigley India Pvt. Ltd. HT Media, which publishes ‘Hindustan Times’ and ‘Hindustan’, is also the publisher of Mint.
Bose named Times group editorial director
New Delhi: Bennett, Coleman and Co. Ltd (BCCL), the publisher of ‘The Times of India’ (TOI) and ‘Navbharat Times’, among others, has made changes in the organization’s top editorial team. Jaideep Bose has been named editorial director, Times group, a position that has newly been created. Bose was earlier executive editor at TOI.
Arindam Sengupta, resident editor (New Delhi), has been elevated to the executive editor’s post and Vikas Singh has been named TOI’s New Delhi resident editor. Bose will “play a key role in guiding the group’s management in the development of our overall editorial strategy across news platforms as the group continues its march towards becoming a 360-degree news and media organization”, BCCL chief executive Ravi Dhariwal said in a memo. Bose declined to comment.
PTC India plans to import coal, diversify
Mumbai:PTC India Ltd, the country’s biggest electricity trading company, plans to import coal and may buy stakes in overseas mines to diversify its business amid increased competition.
PTC is looking to invest in mines in Indonesia and India and has signed agreements to supply 1.5 million tonnes (mt) of coal to generators by December 2009, chairman T.N. Thakur said in New Delhi on Monday. The company could source as much as 15mt of the fuel “in the long run”, he said.
The energy trader faces competition from new power exchanges and is using part of the Rs12,000 crore it raised in a January share sale to invest in power projects and energy assets. PTC will pay generators to use its coal in exchange for assured supply of electricity for its customers, Thakur said.
Ranbaxy falls after Dow news on Daiichi deal
Tokyo: Shares of Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd, India’s biggest drug maker, fell the most in two weeks after ‘Dow Jones Newswires’ said the Indian government will re-examine Daiichi Sankyo Co. Ltd’s bid for a controlling stake.
Shares of Ranbaxy ended Monday at Rs512.10, down 2.05%, on the Bombay Stock Exchange even as the exchange’s benchmark Sensex rose 0.34%.
The finance ministry will likely refer Daiichi Sankyo’s offer to the cabinet committee on economic affairs, ‘Dow Jones’ reported, citing an unidentified finance ministry official. Tokyo-based Daiichi Sankyo had agreed in June to acquire control of Ranbaxy for Rs19,800 crore to enter the generic drug market, where sales are growing twice as fast as branded medicines. India’s Foreign Investment Promotion Board had approved the deal on 4 August.
The country requires a cabinet review of foreign takeovers of more than Rs600 crore.
“Our name is on the agenda for a meeting on 26 August” by the board, Maho Tanabe, a spokeswoman for Daiichi Sankyo, said by telephone. “We don’t know the content of the meeting.”
Industry secretary Ray Shankar doesn’t see any problems related to the purchase, he told reporters on Monday in New Delhi during a meeting of industry groups.