Citizens' Issues
AJL shareholders meet, decide to resume National Herald publication
Lucknow : The Associated Journals Ltd (AJL) that published National Herald, Navjivan and Quami Awaz newspapers has decided to resume their publication following an extraordinary general meeting of its shareholders here on Thursday.
 
It was also decided that difference in compensation given to workers in Lucknow and Delhi, when the newspapers were closed, will be removed.
 
AJL managing director Motilal Vora had a given notice in Lucknow-based newspapers last month for an extraordinary general meeting of the AJL on January 21. 
 
Among other things, the notice proposed to seek the approval of the shareholders for turning the AJL into a Section 8 company (non-profit company) under the Companies Act, 2013. 
 
While the National Herald was published in English, Qaumi Awaz was published in Urdu and Navjeevan in Hindi.
 
The notice had come a day before Congress president Sonia Gandhi and party vice president Rahul Gandhi appeared before a trial court in Delhi in the National Herald case on the complaint of BJP leader Subramanian Swamy. Vora, who is also Congress treasurer, was among those summoned in the case.
 
The National Herald newspaper was launched during the freedom struggle in 1938 by Jawaharlal Nehru, who went on to become independent India's first prime minister.
 
The paper originally served as a mouthpiece of the Congress. However, over the decades, circulation dropped and finances dried out, and it finally closed in 2008 with a debt of Rs.90 crore.
 
In a bid to keep AJL afloat, the Congress party gave the company unsecured, interest-free loans for some years up to 2010. On November 23, 2010, the AJL was taken over by a newly-floated company called Young Indian Private Limited (YIL) with the Gandhi family loyalists Suman Dubey and Sam Pitroda as directors.
 
The All India Congress Committee allegedly decided to assign the nearly Rs.90 crore debt owed to it by AJL to YIL, thus making it the owner of the debt in the books.
 
In December 2010, the AJL is said to have decided to transfer its entire equity to Young Indian in lieu of the Rs.90 crore debt. Young Indian paid Rs.50 lakh for this acquisition.
 
The AJL, which originally owed Rs.90 crore to the Congress, became a fully-owned subsidiary of Young Indian by virtue of this decision and transaction.
 
In December 2010, Rahul Gandhi was appointed its director and in January 2011, Sonia Gandhi also joined the board as a director. Motilal Vora and Oscar Fernandes too were appointed to the Young Indian board on the same day.
 
As per documents, Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi have individual shareholdings of 38 percent each in the company while Vora and Fernandes hold the remaining 24 percent in equal parts.
 
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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Five hurt as Mercedes climbs on Mumbai pavement
Mumbai : Four women and a child sleeping on a pavement were injured as a speeding Mercedes car ran over them in Mumbai early Friday, police said here.
 
The driver of the vehicle was reported absconding as the police made investigations.
 
The five were rushed to Sir J. J. Hospital for treatment.
 
The speeding Mercedes rammed into two other vehicles before climbing on the pavement and running over the persons sleeping near Masjid Bunder.
 
However, the police managed to trace the driver and have detained him for hit-and-run accident.
 
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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A generous Maharashtra govt returns 70% of dal and oil seized from hoarders
In Aurangabad, Amravati, Pune and Nashik divisions, the state government returned 100% of commodities it seized from hoarders, reveals an RTI reply
 
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led Maharashtra government has returned about 70% of stocks of dal and oil seized from hoarders, reveals a reply received under the Right to Information (RTI) Act. According to the reply received by RTI activist Anil Galgali, state government carried out its much publicised raids on 5,592 hoarders of commodities across the seven divisions. This resulted in seizing 1.23 lakh metric tons of dal and oil, worth Rs539.50 crore from the hoarders. However, the state government has returned about 70% or 85,547.8 metric tons of dal and oil to the hoarders and has a balance stock 37,480.61 metric tons, reveals the reply received under RTI.
 
Galgali had to file the first appeal to receive this information. While the maximum raids were conducted in Mumbai and Thane divisions, commodities worth Rs458.55 crore with the quantity being 67,065.810 metric tonnes in total of 35 raids that were conducted in the region, followed by Konkan, where commodities worth Rs55.73 crore, comprising of 36,146.57 metric tons were seized.
 
In Mumbai and Thane division, the state government has returned stocks of 56,574.45 metric tons out of 59,732.89 metric tons seized. In Nagpur division out of the 7,255.52 metric tons seized 4,939.25 is in stock, and 2,316.27 metric tons was returned. In Konkan division out of the 52,747.26 metric tons seized, 23,362.94 were returned, leaving 29,384.32 metric tons as stock.
 
However, what is shocking, according to Galgali is, the government returned 100% stocks seized in four divisions, Aurangabad, Amravati, Pune and Nashik. A total of 1,860 metric tons was seized from Amravati, 1,110.47 metric tons seized from Aurangabad, 144.99 metric tons was seized from Pune and 181.67 metric tons was seized from Nashik, which was returned back to the hoarders.
 
Expressing suspicion on the activities of the government officials in returning the 70% of the seized stock to the hoarders, Galgali demanded an investigation in to this mater. "...the government should investigate and publish the actual facts and true report of the situation. The manner in which the raids were largely publicised, similarly the government acted very swiftly in returning the seized quantities to hoarders. This raises suspicion and too many unanswered questions, which should be explained by the government," the RTI activist said.   
 

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COMMENTS

Meenal Mamdani

2 years ago

The question is were the commodities owned legally by the traders.

A shopkeeper is entitled to purchase and store quantities of food grains, oil, sugar, salt, etc that she/he sells in the shop. When does this constitute hoarding?

Similarly a shopkeeper will naturally want to maximize profits. When does that cross the line of legitimacy and become extortionate and illegal?

As consumers we see things from our perspective only. But there is also another perspective and that is of the trader. Are there clear rules about when a shopkeeper crosses the line from a prudent shopkeeper stocking supplies to one who is deemed a hoarder?

I request the readers to explain the law on hoarding.

B. Yerram Raju

2 years ago

Raids for the public consumption and release for the hoarders - a great strategy!
The raids were conducted when there was hue and cry on sky-rocketing prices of dals and oils in the country. Why these stocks could not have been released for public consumption? It speaks of the nexus between the politics and trade.

Dahyabhai S Patel

2 years ago

Hindutvawaalee BJP government is proving worst as compared to Congress and coalition government!!!Ultimately what matters is colured (black) monies!!!!! In my city for awarding a contract for a flyover Rs.two crores in cash were demanded by the highest autority and as it was not affordable to the contractor, it went to other one.

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