Citizens' Issues
Advanced signalling system commissioned for Khurja railway station
New Delhi : Indian Railways on Thursday commissioned a state-of-the-art computerised signalling system at Khurja junction in Uttar Pradesh which will enable 256 possible train movements at the railway station, a statement said.
 
"This work of signal wizardry will help in quicker movements of trains since the train path will be cleared by a central operator with click of a mouse on the visual display unit (VDU)," said a railways ministry statement.
 
The VDU will display the position of each train at the 4.5 km long Khurja yard including adjoining track positions and avoids train traffic disruption.
 
The Indian Railway Project Management Unit (IRPMU), an arm of North Central Railway in association with the construction and open line units of the railways commissioned the system, the statement said.
 
The re-signalling work was a part of Modernisation of Signalling and Telecommunication System on Ghaziabad-Kanpur railway section costing Rs.440 crore.
 
The project included replacement of worn out signalling gears at 47 railways stations, enabling automatic signalling at multiple station and a setting up a captive Global System of Mobile (GSM) communication between driver, guard, station master and controllers.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Nifty, Sensex may struggle – Thursday closing report
Bulls may be in control as long as Nifty is above 7,100
 
We had mentioned in Wednesday’s closing report that Nifty, Sensex might rally and that if Nifty stayed above 7,100, it could head higher. There was a healthy rally in the Indian stock markets and the major indices closed with gains of over 1% over Wednesday’s close. 
 
 
After the sharp corrections of the recent past, the stock markets rallied in line with global cues and good buying was observed in capital goods, healthcare, IT and TECK sectors. 
 
US agency Moody's Investors Service on Thursday forecast for India a "stable GDP growth at around 7.5% in 2016 and 2017", saying the country is relatively less exposed to external headwinds, like the Chinese slowdown, and will benefit from lower commodity prices. India is relatively less exposed to external factors, including China slowdown and global capital flows. Instead, the economic outlook will be primarily determined by domestic factors, Moody's said in its report "Global Macro Outlook 2016-17 - Global growth faces rising risks at time of policy constraint". "Together with Turkey and China among the G20 emerging markets, India benefits from lower commodity prices: In 2014, net commodity imports amounted to 5.9% of India's GDP, compared with net exports worth 1.3%, 3.3% and 4.3% for South Africa, Brazil and Indonesia respectively," it said on Thursday. "In the five years to the end of the decade, we expect GDP per capita (at market exchange rates) to increase by 34% in real terms in India, compared with only 3.6% in the G20 emerging markets, excluding China and India," the report added. Moody's said overall growth will fail to pick up steam over the next two years as the slowdown in China, lower commodity prices and tighter financing in some countries weigh on the economy.
 
Japan posted a goods trade deficit of 645 billion yen (about $5 billion) in January on weak exports amid poor economic situation around the world, the government said on Thursday. The finance ministry said that the value of exports fell 12.9% year-on-year to about $46 billion, marking the fourth straight month of decline, while imports also dropped 18.0% to $52 billion for the 13th consecutive month.
 
Drug major Cipla has acquired two US-based firms -- InvaGen Pharmaceuticals and Exelan Pharmaceuticals -- for $550 million, the company said in a regulatory filing here on Thursday. "The acquisition was made by Cipla's UK arm through a wholly-owned special purpose vehicle which would merge into InvaGen Pharmaceuticals after the acquisition. The combined revenue for the two companies for the year-ended 2015 is over $230 million," the company said in a statement. The company had informed Bombay Stock Exchange on Sep 4, last year that the cash consideration payable for Invagen is $500 million and for Exelan it is $50 million. Cipla shares closed at Rs525.35, up 1.09% on the BSE.
 
US stocks surged for a third straight session on Wednesday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 177.16 points, or 1.09%, to 16,373.57. The S&P 500 jumped 26.80 points, or 1.41%, to 1,922.38. The Nasdaq Composite Index surged 76.64 points, or 1.73%, to 4,512.59. Investors were encouraged by a strong rebound in oil prices. Oil prices rocketed on Wednesday as Iran supported output freeze deal proposed by top producers Russia and Saudi Arabia. In response, the energy sector surged 2.92 percent as the biggest advancer among the S&P 500's 10 sectors. The Fed minutes released on Wednesday afternoon were also in focus. According to the minutes released, in discussing the appropriate path for the target range for the federal funds rate over the medium term, policymakers agreed that it would be important to closely monitor global economic and financial developments and to continue to assess their implications for the labour market and inflation. "The actual path of the federal funds rate will depend on the economic outlook as informed by incoming data," the minutes said.
 
The top gainers and top losers of the major indices are given in the table below:
 
 
The closing values of the major Asian indices are given in the table below:
 
 

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Bank employee union INEBEF to hold dharna at Jantarmantar on 4th March
While demanding action by government on several long pending demands, INBEF, the banking unit of INTUC, has also proposed a loan restructuring scheme for farmers
 
The Indian National Bank Employees Federation (INBEF), banking wing of INTUC said it will hold a day long dharna at Jantarmantar in Delhi on 4 March 2016 for several long pending demands as well as for introducing an agriculture loan restructuring policy for farmers.
 
"Contrary to introduction of 5:25 policy for big corporate houses, INBEF has demanded introduction of 2:10 and 3:12 policy for restructuring of agricultural loans of farmers. Poor farmers are suffering year after year due to bad weather conditions and do not have any income for repayment of their loans. Thousands of farmers are committing suicides as no one is taking serious interest in resolving their problems," says Subhash S Sawant, General Secretary of INBEF in a statement.
 
INBEF says it is on the path of agitation since long on the burning issue of non-performing assets (NPAs), writing off of huge quantum of bad debts, one time settlement of mounting bad debts in a throw away price in the banking industry, which are paving the way to big corporates to enjoy the public funds at their whims and caprices.
 
"As per the latest statement made by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor, the NPAs of public sector banks (PSBs) will reach Rs3.15 lakh crore by March, 2016 and the percentage of NPAs will be over 6% of loans. Over 80% of the NPAs are by corporate houses. NPA culture is built to make loot of public money in absence of stringent action against bad borrowers. A total of 27 PSBs have written off a staggering Rs1.14 lakh crore of bad loans during 2012-15, with the last fiscal alone witnessing a steep 53% rise in write-offs as part of the balance-sheet clean up. The bad debts written-off between 2004 and 2015 were Rs2.11 lakh crore, a huge loot of public money," INBEF said.
 
It further said, "The RBI, instead of taking strong action against the wilful defaulters has allowed flexible structuring of long term project loans to infrastructure and core industries in the name of 5:25 policy. Under this policy loans can be restructured for repayment up to 25 years or more. This policy is framed with a view to help large corporates. This facilitates misappropriation of public money and RBI may lose surveillance over the big ticket borrowers after scheduled commercial Banks exercise their powers to reconstruct such loans. We oppose this reconstruction policy and demand its withdrawal immediately, and take immediate steps for recovery of such loans."
 
Calling the government's decision to infuse capital in selected eight banks as discrimination, the employee union said that this will adversely affect existence of weak bank, who are in dire need of capital. "The Government in September 2015, has infused Rs13,955 crore capital in eight banks, including State Bank of India (SBI), Bank of Baroda (BoB), Punjab National Bank (PNB), Canara Bank, Dena Bank, Andhra Bank and Corporation Bank. The weak banks will not be provided capital by the government. This decision of the government is against the weak banks which are in need of support. The decision will adversely affect the existence of weak banks. It is indirectly aimed at merger or closures of the weak banks or privatising them," it added.
 
INBEF said it strongly feels that the onus of decreasing net profit of the nationalised banks despite huge increase in gross profit shouldn't be transferred on the shoulder of the crores of depositors as well as the bank employees. The income of the senior citizens who are carrying on their livelihood out of the interest earned by them from their Bank deposits are decreasing steadily due to decrease in interest rates, it said.
 
The bank union also demanded updation of pension for employees, and implementation of government guidelines on transfer of female employees. "We strongly oppose the moves of the management to victimise the trade union activists as well as withdrawing the trade union rights of INBEF," it further said.
 
Here is the scheme proposed by the union on re-structuring of agricultural loans for farmers...
 
 

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COMMENTS

B. Yerram Raju

10 months ago

Banks amply demonstrated that they are lending to agriculture and MSEs only under compulsive direct lending portfolio. There is nothing public now among public sector banks excepting Jan Dhan and Mudra which they are doing forced by circumstances and under the CGTMSE guarantee mechanism. They have never achieved the targets under the Agriculture at 18% of ANBC and over 7% under MSEs. There is continuous pressure on various committees and RBI to widen the scope of priority sector to camouflage the targets. It is time that RBI accepts the reality and innovate funding options for the farm and non-farm rural sector through non-deposit based banking - or donor based lending when the increased supply of credit for these sectors would find market based interest mechanisms and prompt recycling mechanisms. Natural calamities are of various types and same type of formula for restructuring does not help. In the case of cyclones, soil becomes saline and need treatment to regain their lost strength while in the case of floods crop is lost and cattle may have been washed out. But the crop during the next season will be bumper crop compensating in multiple times by nature itself due to silt accumulation on the soil after waters recede. But in both the cases the restructuring formula is same for the farm credit. Where the asset is totally lost and even dwelling house is lost like in either HUd Hud or other typhoons, the Government should write off the loans and pay up the banks so that credit for the next season would be made available in time. there is need for fresh thinking on the subject.

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