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News highlights of the day: Siemens bags contract worth Rs 579 cr for Gujarat Metro Link

This blog will keep track of key global and local developments impacting business and markets through the day. Important local and global political developments will also find resonance here

  • Jan 08, 09:13 PM (IST)

    Siemens bags contract worth Rs 579 cr for Gujarat Metro Link

    Siemens on Monday said that it has bagged a contract worth Rs 579 crore for electrification work of Gujarat Metro Link Express.

    "Indian mass-transit operator Metro Link Express for Gandhinagar and Ahmedabad (MEGA) Company Ltd has awarded an order of approximately Rs 579 crore (Euro 76.04 million) to the consortium of Siemens Ltd India and Siemens AG, Germany for electrification of the 39.2-kilometer Metro Express Link in Ahmedabad, Siemens said in a statement.

    According to the statement, the line, currently under construction, will run in Ahmedabad city in two corridors.

  • Jan 08, 09:56 PM (IST)

    That's all for today, readers. Thanks for staying on with our coverage of the day's action. Your enthusiasm encourages us to better our coverage every day. Do come back tomorrow for more news, views and insights.

  • Jan 08, 09:55 PM (IST)

    Nalco eyes Rs 31,000 crore turnover by 2032

    State-owned Nalco on Monday announced formulation of a long-term corporate plan, which envisages the aluminium maker to reach a turnover of Rs 31,248 crore and a PAT of Rs 3,010 crore by 2032.

    With the release of corporate plan, Mines Secretary Arun Kumar “appreciated the efforts of Nalco in formulating a plan that provides a strategic way forward for the company up to 2032…The long-term strategy foresees the company to reach a turnover of Rs 31,248 crore and a PAT of Rs 3,010 crore by 2032,” the company said in a BSE filing.

    The new plan expects the company to reach a turnover of Rs 18,171 crore with a PAT of Rs 1,693 crore by 2024 with the augmentation of the smelting capacity to 1.1 million tonnes and refining capacity to 3.27 million tonnes, it said.

  • Jan 08, 09:53 PM (IST)

    SEBI tells clearing corps to monitor intra-trade losses

    Markets regulator SEBI has put in place stricter norms wherein clearing corporations are now required to keep a close tab on losses made by members during intra-day trades.

    The move follows discussions about the risk arising out of accumulation of crystallized obligations or profit/loss on trade due to intra-day squaring off of positions.

    “The intra-day crystallized losses shall be monitored and blocked by clearing corporations from the free collateral on a real-time basis only for those transactions which are subject to upfront margining. For this purpose, crystallized losses can be offset against crystallized profits at a client level, if any,” SEBI said in a circular.

  • Jan 08, 09:47 PM (IST)

    "Instead of accepting that we are struggling to create jobs, instead of uniting people of all religions and communities together to face the challenge, the govt is busy converting the fear being generated in jobless youth into hatred between communities," Rahul Gandhi said at convention of Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin in Bahrain, reports ANI. 

  • Jan 08, 09:45 PM (IST)
  • Jan 08, 09:44 PM (IST)

    ‘Achhe din’ have arrived in Himachal Pradesh, says Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur

    Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur on Monday said that “achhe din” (good days) had arrived in the state and that his government would not tolerate corruption at any level.

    He also said that there was no scarcity of funds for developmental works.

    “Corruption would not be tolerated at any level and my government would make sincere efforts to fulfil the wish of party leaders to break the jinx and retain power in the next assembly polls,” he said at a gathering in Dharotdhar in his home constituency Seraj.

  • Jan 08, 09:41 PM (IST)

    BMC chief asks hoteliers to strictly follow fire safety norms

    The municipal chief on Monday asked restaurant and hotel owners to strictly follow rules related to fire safety at their establishments.

    Representatives of the Indian Hotel and Restaurant Association (AHAR) had met Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation Commissioner Ajoy Mehta on Monday against the backdrop of the Kamala Mills fire that killed 14 people in the early hours of December 29.

    A senior BMC official told PTI that the stern advice was well received and the AHAR representatives assured the civic chief of full cooperation in making restaurants and hotels in the city safe for its patrons.

  • Jan 08, 09:40 PM (IST)

    Supreme Court stays High Court verdict against 85% pictorial warning on tobacco products

    The Supreme Court on Monday stayed the Karnataka High Court order quashing the 2014 government regulation that packets of tobacco products must carry pictorial warning covering 85 percent of the packaging space, saying that "health of a citizen has primacy".

    A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud was "unimpressed" with the submissions of the Tobacco Institute of India (TII) that the interim stay would harm the fundamental right to do business of tobacco manufacturers.

    "Considering the ...submission advanced at the Bar and keeping in view the objects and reasons of the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) Act, 2003 and the measures taken by the state, we think it appropriate to direct stay of operation of the judgement and order passed by the High Court of Karnataka," the bench said.

  • Jan 08, 09:35 PM (IST)

    Congress attacks govt for scrapping defence projects

    The Congress on Monday accused the government of compromising national security following reports claiming that it has scrapped various defence projects including the Rs 32,000-crore minesweeper project.

    Congress communications in-charge Randeep Surjewala said the scrapping of ‘Make in India’Minesweeper Project and the government’s “opaqueness” on INS Arihant are “two glaring examples of this compromise”.

    “India’s maritime security is compromised by Prime Minister Narendra Modi government as Chinese threats loom large.

  • Jan 08, 09:25 PM (IST)

    Gujarat High Court rejects The Wire's plea against Jay Shah's defamation suit

    The Gujarat High Court on Monday rejected a petition filed by news portal 'The Wire' seeking quashing of a criminal defamation case filed against it by BJP president Amit Shah's son Jay over an article related to his company.

    Justice J B Pardiwala rejected the petition on the grounds that the article, "The Golden Touch of Jay Amit Shah", is per say "defamatory" and the trial court should proceed with the case.

    The High Court, which had earlier directed the trial court to complete the hearing in the case in six months, on Monday withdrew that order.

  • Jan 08, 09:20 PM (IST)

    Urgent need to raise tax base to achieve fiscal target: SBI report

    India needs to urgently raise its tax base to meet the fiscal deficit target without curbing essential expenditure, says a SBI report.
    The country's gross fiscal deficit as percentage of GDP, started shooting up after the 2008 financial crisis, said the report — 'India's Public Finance Trends'.

    However, with economic recovery gaining pace, the government embarked on the path of fiscal consolidation and has brought down its fiscal deficit to 3.5 percent of GDP in 2016-17.

    "The states' fiscal deficit, however, has increased. To reach the combined target of 6 per cent fiscal deficit for the Centre and states an alignment of the policies of the Centre and states is required," it said.

  • Jan 08, 09:10 PM (IST)

    Air India terminates over 400 contractual employees

    Disinvestment-bound Air India has terminated the services of over 400 employees who were hired by the airline on contractual basis after their retirement.

    The employees affected are those hired for non-technical roles and the move follows an order from the airline's Chairman and Managing Director Pradeep Singh Kharola. The latest directive follows a similar order issued in August, which put on hold proposals for employing recently retired officials as well as renewing contracts for those former employees who were due for an extension.

    "The CMD has directed that contract of the retired employees under non-technical category (i.e. excluding pilots, flight dispatchers, service engineers, OPT, OTT instructors, flight safety) be terminated with immediate effect," as per a circular issued by Executive Director-Personnel on January 5.

  • Jan 08, 09:07 PM (IST)

    Bitcoin is an asset, not a currency: Israel’s central bank

    Israel’s central bank said on Monday it would not recognize virtual currencies such as bitcoin as actual currency and that it was difficult to devise regulations to monitor the risks of such activity to the country’s banks and their clients.

    Deputy Governor Nadine Baudot-Trajtenberg said there had been public complaints Israeli banks were making it difficult for some customers to transfer money from their accounts to buy bitcoin. But this was something the central bank would not be able to address. Other central banks faced the same problem.

    “The Bank of Israel’s position is that they should be viewed as a financial asset,” Baudot-Trajtenberg told a meeting of Israel’s parliamentary finance committee, noting that there was no government responsibility for investors in bitcoin.

  • Jan 08, 09:06 PM (IST)

    Congress’ Karan Singh Yadav files nomination for Alwar Lok Sabha bypoll

    Accompanied by former Union minister Bhanwar Jitendra Singh and supporters, Congress candidate Karan Singh Yadav today filed his nomination for Alwar Lok Sabha bypoll to be held on January 29.

    The last date for filing of nominations is January 10. The scrutiny of the nomination papers will take place on January 11 and the last date of withdrawal of nomination is January 15.

    After filing his nomination, Yadav said, “There is resentment among the public due to bad governance in the state and the Congress is going to win the bypolls.”

  • Jan 08, 09:05 PM (IST)

    Supreme Court to hear on February 6 plea to bring CBI under ambit of RTI Act

    The Supreme Court on Monday fixed February 6 for hearing a plea challenging the government's 2011 decision to keep the CBI out of the ambit of the Right to Information Act.

    A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud posted the matter for final hearing after the parties said that they need time to make detailed submissions on the issue.

  • Jan 08, 09:04 PM (IST)

    Supreme Court to hear on February 6 plea to bring CBI under ambit of RTI Act

    The Supreme Court on Monday fixed February 6 for hearing a plea challenging the government's 2011 decision to keep the CBI out of the ambit of the Right to Information Act.

    A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud posted the matter for final hearing after the parties said that they need time to make detailed submissions on the issue.

  • Jan 08, 09:00 PM (IST)

    G-sec investment limit oversubscribed, FPIs bid for Rs 12K crore

    Government bonds attracted bids worth nearly Rs 12,000 crore from foreign investors in Monday's auction, as against the debt investment limit of Rs 6,666 crore on offer, exchange data showed.

    The auction for investment limits for such securities has been receiving a good response from foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) in recent past.

    The auction was conducted on BSE’s ebidxchange platform from 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm, after the close of market hours.

  • Jan 08, 08:58 PM (IST)

    Rahul Gandhi meets Bahrain Crown Prince; discusses bilateral issues

    ​Rahul Gandhi on Monday met with Crown Prince of Bahrain Shaikh Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa here and discussed a variety of bilateral issues of interest during his first foreign trip after becoming the Congress chief.

    Gandhi, who is here as a state guest of Bahrain, is also expected to meet King Hamas bin Isa Al Khalifa. He will address a convention of NRIs and meet the Gulf country’s Prime Minister Prince Salman bin Hamas Al-Khalifa.

    “Had a good meeting with Crown Prince of Bahrain, HRH Shaikh Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa. We discussed a variety of issues of interest to India and Bahrain,” Gandhi said in a tweet.

  • Jan 08, 08:56 PM (IST)

    ‘Expect hike in minimum pension to Rs 7.5K per month under EPS-95’

    Pensioners under EPS-95 may get a minimum of Rs 5,000 a month as interim relief, and Rs 7,500 eventually, in view of the assurances by the Labour Ministry, the organisation pushing for the cause said on Monday.

    The pension is Rs 1,000 a month at present, provided under the Employees’ Pension Scheme 1995 (EPS-95) managed by the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO).

    The All India EPS-95 Pensioners Sangharsh Samiti said in a statement that the Labour Minister had assured its delegation, on December 6, 2017, of meeting its demands.

  • Jan 08, 08:51 PM (IST)

    Supreme Court to hear on February 6 plea to bring CBI under ambit of RTI Act

    The Supreme Court on Monday fixed February 6 for hearing a plea challenging the government's 2011 decision to keep the CBI out of the ambit of the Right to Information Act.

    A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud posted the matter for final hearing after the parties said that they need time to make detailed submissions on the issue.

    The case was first filed in the Delhi High Court, but later transferred to the top court after the Centre had said that several petitions in this regard have been filed in different high courts across the country.

  • Jan 08, 08:48 PM (IST)

    JUST IN | RBI seeks SC permission to initiate insolvency proceedings against Jaiprakash Associates Ltd

    RBI on Monday approached the Supreme Court to seek permission for initiating insolvency proceedings against JAL. Homebuyers worried that if insolvency proceedings against JAL is allowed, who will deposit Rs 2000 crore with the Supreme Court registry: Sources

  • Jan 08, 08:41 PM (IST)

    Lalu Prasad Yadav to move Jharkhand High Court for bail

    Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav, who is lodged in a jail here after his conviction by a CBI court in a fodder scam case, would move the Jharkhand High Court for bail within the next few days, his lawyer said.

    Prasad's lawyer Prabhat Kumar told PTI that Prasad's lawyers will move the high court either on Friday or next Monday.

    An official of Birsa Munda Central jail said certified copies of the CBI court's judgement sentencing the 16 fodder scam convicts, including Prasad, were handed over to them on Saturday.

  • Jan 08, 08:34 PM (IST)

    ED seeks bail cancellation of Misa Bharti's CA in PMLA case
    The Enforcement Directorate on Monday sought cancellation of the bail to a chartered accountant, accused in a money laundering case and alleged to have links with RJD chief Lalu Prasad's daughter Misa Bharti.

    The ED's counsel alleged before Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva that CA Rajesh Agarwal laundered money for various persons through shell companies.

    The counsel said Agarwal, the main accused in the case, was wrongly granted bail by the trial court while co-accused — two Delhi-based businessmen brothers Surendra Kumar Jain and Virendra Jain — are in jail under judicial custody.

    It sought cancellation of the bail granted to Agarwal, saying since it was an economic offence he should not have been granted the relief.

  • Jan 08, 08:29 PM (IST)

    Iran says it might reconsider cooperation with UN nuclear watchdog
    Iran said on Monday it might reconsider its cooperation with the UN nuclear watchdog if the United States failed to respect its commitments in the nuclear deal Tehran struck with world powers in 2015.

    US President Donald Trump must decide by mid-January whether to continue waiving US sanctions on Iran's oil exports under the terms of the nuclear pact that eased economic pressure on Tehran in exchange for limits on its nuclear programme.

    In October, Trump refused to certify that Iran was complying with the deal, also known by its acronym JCPOA, even though the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said it was.

  • Jan 08, 08:26 PM (IST)

    Bengaluru fire update:  A case has been registered against 4 persons under the section 304 IPC in connection with fire incident at Kailash bar restaurant in Kumbaara Sangha building that killed five people last night. FSL, Electrical Inspectorate and fire services team inspected the spot of the incident, reports ANI. 

  • Jan 08, 08:24 PM (IST)

    Bankers invited to Saudi Arabia to pitch for Aramco listing roles
    Saudi Aramco has invited banks pitching for roles in its stock market listing, including Citi and Goldman Sachs, for meetings in the kingdom in the coming weeks to make their case, according to three banking sources familiar with the matter.

    The meetings are an indication that preparations for a 2018 initial public offering, which could be the biggest IPO in history, are progressing despite market speculation it could be delayed or even shelved.

    Executives from Citi, Goldman and Deutsche Bank, which are all bidding to be global coordinators for the share sale, are among the teams invited to present their pitches in person, said the three sources, including two bankers who expect to attend the meetings.

    The talks will be held at the end of January or beginning of February in the Eastern Province city of Dhahran, where the state oil company is headquartered, they added.

  • Jan 08, 08:23 PM (IST)

    South Africa trounce India by 72 runs, Vernon Philander wrecker-in-chief with six wickets.

  • Jan 08, 08:21 PM (IST)

    Punjab govt's debt waiver scheme a 'massive fraud': Punjab's Former Dy CM Sukhbir Badal
    A day after Punjab's Congress government launched its farm debt-waiver scheme, the opposition Shiromani Akali Dal on Monday accused the ruling party of defrauding farmers by waiving only a part of their loan.

    "Debt-waiver (scheme) is a massive fraud with the farming community. There cannot be a bigger fraud than this," SAD president Sukhbir Badal told reporters here.

    The opposition party has decided to meet Punjab Governor V P Singh Badnore on January 12, seeking the dismissal of the Amarinder Singh government. It will also hold a meeting of the core committee of the party on the same day on the issue.

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