A new government decision could boost technical education in India. On Thursday human resources minister Kapil Sibal announced measures that will allow companies to set up institutions for technical education. Corporate houses will now be able to register the institutions as companies under Section 25 of the Company’s Act. Sibal also said the government would now allow private equity firms to partner with the government in setting up educational institutions.
And on the economy, food inflation has accelerated to a ten-week high. The food price index gained 14.44% in the period to 18 December. That’s compared to 12.13% in the previous week. Prices of two staple vegetables, onions and potatoes, have risen in recent weeks, though the government took measures to bring them down.
The government says it’s taking steps to ensure India can continue importing oil from Iran. On Thursday, petroleum secretary S. Sundareshan said authorities were working on a settlement mechanism that would allow them to pay for Iranian oil.
India buys some 400,000 barrels of crude from Iran every day. But those imports are under jeopardy after the RBI said India could not use the Asian Clearing Union for deals with Iran anymore. The US has been asking other countries to reduce their dealings with Iran. On Wednesday, the US government had praised the RBI’s move on the Asian Clearing Union.
And finally, markets shot up on Thursday, with the Sensex hitting a seven-week high. The index gained 133 points to close at 20,389. And the Nifty rose 41 to end at 6,102.