Kolkatta: The ruling Left Front in West Bengal on Sunday agreed to renew the licence issued to Metro Cash and Carry India Pvt Ltd, subsidiary of German wholesaler Metro AG, to trade in farm products. The licence under Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee Act was issued in 2005, but wasn’t renewed last year because the Forwar Bloc party, which controls the state’s agriculture department, was opposed to entry of foreign players in wholesale of farm products.
Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee had on Friday issued an order to the district magistrate of South 24 Parganas district to renew the licence, despite resistance from the Forward Bloc, which said its ministers in the government would stop attending office on protest. However, the dispute between the Bloc and the Communist Party of India on renewal of the licence was resolved at a meeting of the Left Front on Sunday. It was also decided on Sunday that the licence would be renewed by 10 October.
- A Staff Writer
‘No differences with govt on pay panel’
New Delhi: The Armed Forces on Sunday said they had no differences with the government, amid reports that defence minister A.K. Antony had conveyed his unhappiness over their unprecedented refusal to implement the pay commission notification and got them around to accept the revised salaries temporarily.
“I just want to clarify that this talk of differences between the Armed Forces and the government...I think that is not right,” army chief Gen. Deepak Kapoor said. “The fact that the defence ministry, defence minister and the Prime Minister are with us shows that he (Antony) is also part of the government, as we are. So there are no differences. I think it has been played up a little incorrectly.”
86% drop in funding through QIP in 2008
New Delhi: Companies fund-raising activity through qualified institutional placements (QIPs) route has witnessed a significant slump on account of adverse market conditions, with the total capital raised so far this year declining by 86%.
Funds raised through the QIP route have reduced substantially to $530 million (Rs2,459 crore) so far this year, compared with $5 billion in 2007, according to the latest report of Nexgen Capitals, the merchant-banking arm of brokerage firm SMC Global Securities.
So far this year, only four qualified institutional placements deals have been announced, while there were 29 deals in 2007.
Speedy notification on derivatives
New Delhi: Amid the global financial pressures, the ministry of corporate affairs wants expeditious notification on standards on financial instruments such as derivatives so that companies make proper disclosure of such exposures in their account books.
“The ministry has asked the National Advisory Committee on Accounting Standard (NACAS) to speed up the work on the notification of AS 30, 31 and 32 and probably within a month’s time it will have its final meeting on these standards,” a senior ministry official said.The ministry has sought the Reserve Bank’s advice on the transition period because banking and non-banking financial companies and financial institutions will be the most-affected after the notification of standards, the official added.
Land purchase is biggest reason for project delays
New Delhi: With the row in Singur, land acquisition has emerged as a big impediment for industrial projects, particularly for those in the infrastructure sector, an overwhelming 81% chief executive officers (CEOs) said in a Confederation of Indian Industry survey. These CEOs of infrastructure developers and financiers felt land acquisition was the biggest hurdle in implementation of infrastructure projects, the survey said.
Other factors cited for project delays by majority of the respondents are environment clearance, government approval and lack of coordination among various implementing agencies.
Further, the report says, rising input and interest costs also lead to cost overrun for infrastructure projects, which was a cause of concern for both developers and financiers.
BJP plans to launch portal for Advani
Chennai: The Bharatiya Janata Party, or BJP, the main opposition party, is planning to launch a portal for its prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani as it puts emphasis on information technology ahead of the upcoming general election. According to Prodyut Bora, convenor-IT (information technology) cell of the BJP, the party is focusing on IT for three reasons—to automate the party, attract IT professionals and scrutinize the ruling government on e-governance policy matters. The party is planning to introduce a number of IT initiatives such as an interactive website with videos and online communities, a chat messenger for BJP members, separate websites for each state unit and networking of 500 BJP offices across the country.
Hoax call now a non-bailable offence
New Delhi: Pranksters who want to have fun by making hoax calls in the national capital, beware!
With Delhi Police receiving over 80 fake messages so far this year, it has started charging these offenders under a non-bailable offence making it difficult to get away with such pranks.
The city police have started charging such troublemakers for creating fear or alarm among general public under section 505-B of the Indian Penal Code which is a non-bailable offence.
For the first time, Delhi Police invoked section 505-B last month against a Noida-based teacher, Rose Dehb, who allegedly sent SMSes to a lawyer on 2 August that blasts would take place in Patiala House and Supreme Court.
Dehb allegedly wanted to implicate two lawyers, Atif Hussain and Akhlaq Hussain because of personal enmity and sent several SMSes threatening to blow up India Gate and courts in the city.
Of late, there has been an increase in the number of bomb hoax calls after the serial blasts in the national capital, that kept cops on their toes.
Soon after the blasts, there were bomb scares at Barakhamba Road, Rajiv Chowk metro station and several other places in the Capital.
DoT may offer nominal fee for extra spectrum
New Delhi: Already under attack for distributing spectrum at a throwaway price to new operators, the government may invite another barrage of criticism as the department of telecom (DoT) is likely to propose a nominal fee for radio frequency allegedly hoarded by existing GSM service providers beyond 6.2 MHz.
According to sources, DoT is likely to recommend a one-time charge of about Rs250 crore per MHz of spectrum beyond the contracted 6.2 MHz along with additional 1% annual usage charge.
Sources said if implemented, this recommendation may result in huge revenue loss ranging between Rs6,000 crore to Rs10,000 crore every year.