Anna’s fast enters 12th day, Parliament set to discuss Lokpal

In a late night meeting between the government and Team Anna, law minister Salman Khurshid conveyed to the Gandhian's emissaries that a consensus should be built around the note struck by prime minister in his speech in Parliament on the Lokpal issue

New Delhi: Social activist Anna Hazare's fast entered into the 12th day Saturday as Parliament is all set to discuss the Lokpal (anti-corruption ombudsman) issue which could lead to the Gandhian calling off his hunger strike, reports PTI.

Concerns over his health were raised on Saturday morning after doctors said they were more worried than Friday night as the 74-year-old Gandhian's blood pressure has dipped while heart beat has increased.

"Anna is continuing his determination. But next few hours are decisive both ways. He is looking forward to the resolution of Parliament. Dr Naresh Trehan has examined him.

He looks cheerful and determined. But there are concerns," Team Anna member Kiran Bedi said.

Team Anna will be looking at the Parliament debate and adoption of a resolution would lead to the end of the fast.

The issue will now come up in Lok Sabha (Lower House of Parliament) when finance minister Pranab Mukherjee makes a statement on the Lokpal issue, setting the stage for a debate.

In a late night meeting between the government and Team Anna, law minister Salman Khurshid conveyed to the Gandhian's emissaries that a consensus should be built around the note struck by prime minister Manmohan Singh in his speech in Parliament on the Lokpal issue.

Asked whether the government had received any commitment from Team Anna, he said, "There are expectations but not a commitment."

The government hopes that "emergence of any form of consensus or convergence" during the day will persuade Mr Hazare about its "seriousness and willingness" to ensure there is good and strong Lokpal Bill.

As the fast crossed 260 hours, the Ramlila ground witnessed a thin presence of supporters.

The absence of the usual wave of umpteen number of supporters took the crew of TV news channels stationed at the ground and Hazare's supporters by surprise.

However, the volunteers said they expected strong numbers as the day progresses. Since it is a weekend, the number of supporters would increase, they said.

Security at the ground has been strengthened by police after a group of people clashed with cops in the wee hours of yesterday and created a ruckus.

The VIP gate, where the incident occurred at around 3am yesterday, has been secured by a strong posse of police and CRPF personnel. A Delhi Police videographer armed with a handycam has also been stationed there.


Share prices to fall further: Friday Closing Report

Nifty may see the lows of 4,680 again after 19 months

Worries about domestic economic growth following a cut in the growth forecast for the current fiscal by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and global concerns resulted in the market closing in the negative for a third day. Today, the Nifty broke the support of 4,750 which we have been suggesting for the past few days. With this drop, the Nifty dipped to the level last seen on 6 February 2010, which means that we are trading at nearly a 19-month low. The downtrend is expected to continue and we may see the index fall to 4,680.

The market opened flat this morning on domestic concerns, as the RBI noted in its annual report for 2010-11 that was released yesterday that economic growth could moderate to 8% during the current fiscal, from 8.5% recorded a year ago, due to unfavourable developments. Near double-digit food inflation for the week ended 13th August also weighed on the sentiment. The Nifty opened one point lower at 4,839 and the Sensex resumed trading at 16,156, up 10 point from its previous close.

The market gained in the first hour, registering an intra-day high of 4,872 on the Nifty and 16,526 on the Sensex. But, continuous selling by institutional investors dragged the indices lower by noon. The market extended its losses through the post-noon session, dipping to the day’s low in the last 30 minutes of trade. Both the benchmark indices dropped to below their psychological levels, the Nifty to 4,720 and the Sensex to 15,756.

However, the market closed off these lows, on a marginal pull-back. The Nifty declined settled at 4,748, down 92 points, while the Sensex ended the day at 15,849, a loss of 298 points.

The advance-decline ratio on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) was a dismal 263:1447.

The broader indices underperformed the Sensex today as the BSE Mid-cap index tanked 2.25% and the BSE Small-cap index tumbled 2.65%.

All sectoral indices settled in the negative with the BSE Realty (down 4.09%) emerging as the biggest loser. It was followed by BSE Metal (down 3.69%), BSE Oil & Gas (down 3.19%), BSE PSU (down 2.58%) and BSE Bankex (down 2.50%).

The gainers on the Sensex were Hero MotoCorp (up 2.70%), Mahindra & Mahindra (up 1.20%) and Infosys (up 0.68%). The losers were led by Jaiprakash Associates (down 7.58%), DLF (down 5.76%), Tata Steel (down 4.77%), Reliance Industries (down 4.61%), and Coal India (down 3.90%).

The major gainers on the Nifty were Hero MotoCorp (up 3.14%), M&M (up 1.23%), Infosys (up 1.13%), Jindal Steel (up 0.13%) and TCS (up 0.03%). The main losers on the index were Reliance Capital (down 12.33%), Reliance Communications (down 11.11%), JP Associates (down 7.42%), Reliance Infrastructure (down 6.53%) and DLF (down 6.25%).

Markets in Asia settled mostly lower as investors awaited announcements by US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke, who is expected to chalk out the road ahead for the world’s largest economy in a speech later tonight. Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 rose 0.3% in volatile trade as prime minister Naoto Kan announced that he was resigning 14 months into the job.

The Shanghai Composite lost 0.12%, the Hang Seng fell 0.86%, the Jakarta Composite shed 0.07%, the KLSE Composite declined by 1.36% and the Straits Times slipped 0.63%. On the other hand, the Seoul Composite surged 0.81% and the Taiwan Weighted rose 0.46%.

Back home, foreign institutional investors were net sellers of stocks worth Rs1,440.55 crore on Thursday. On the other hand, domestic institutional investors were net buyers of equities worth Rs385.01 crore.

Indian drugmaker Indoco Remedies has entered into agreement to make generic products sold by South Africa’s Aspen Pharmacare in Australia. With this new development, the company’s existing relationship with Aspen will be strengthened. Indoco ended 5.08% lower at Rs386 on the NSE.

Private sector carrier Kingfisher Airlines has received its board’s nod to raise up to Rs2,000 crore through a rights issue. The board has also amended the terms for the issue of optionally convertible debentures that were issued on 3rd January. The stock plunged 6.40% to end at Rs23.40 on the NSE.

Diversified industrial company Ingersoll Rand today announced its entry into the cold chain consultancy segment in India. The company plans to provide a host of services and solutions to address issues of storage, transportation and delivery of perishable products. The stock closed at Rs438.10, down 3.17% on the NSE.


Lifestyle & leisure segment notches up another good quarter

Out of the 29 major sectors that Moneylife tracks, lifestyle & leisure showed the highest growth, registering a 43% growth in revenues in the June 2011 quarter, on a year-on-year basis

It looks like the slowdown in the economy and rising inflation have not dampened the spirit of consumers willing to have a good time. In the lifestyle & leisure sector, as many as 34 out of the 53 companies in this segment listed a sales growth of 10% (and more) for the June quarter, on a year-on-year (y-o-y) basis. The operating profit growth for the sector was an impressive 28% and net profit was up 21% for the same period.

Despite rising gold prices, the growth was led by four jewellery manufacturers, Shree Ganesh Jewellery House, Thangamayil Jewellery, Shrenuj and Company and Gitanjali Gems. Each of these manufacturers registered robust quarterly sales growth of over 60% y-o-y, with an average operating profit margin (OPM) of 6%. Titian Industries also registered an impressive sales growth of 61% with an operating profit growth of 66% and net profit growth of 76%. Just a tad lower was Jubilant Foods with a revenue growth of 60% for the June quarter on a y-o-y basis. It exhibited strong profit growth as well, with operating profit and net profit registering a growth of 65% and 52% respectively. It also had a strong OPM of 19%.

Sales of United Spirits grew by 32% in the June 2011 quarter (y-o-y) whereas that of United Breweries Ltd grew by 23% in the same period. United Spirits had an OPM of 17% with OP growing by 18% and NP by 14%. For United Breweries, profits did not impress, with OP and NP falling below the level of the June 2010 quarter. United Breweries, however, maintained an OPM of 14%

Among the travel support services, the revenues of Cox & Kings grew by 30%, due to the holiday season. OP and NP grew by 29% and 38% respectively for the June quarter on a y-o-y basis. The company also had the highest OPM in the lifestyle & leisure sector with a margin of 56%. Competitor Thomas Cook, however, didn't capitalise on the holiday season, registering a revenue growth of just 19% and an OPM of 40%.

Cinemax must have been the favourite destination for moviegoers. The company's revenues increased by 29% from Rs38 crore in the June quarter of 2010 to Rs49 crore in the June 2011 quarter. Operating profit grew by 15% with an OPM of 12%. PVR registered a growth of 20% in sales with an OPM of 14%. Operating profit grew by 55% from Rs11 crore (Q1 FY2011) to Rs17 crore in Q1 FY2012. Fame Adlabs registered a sales growth of 17% with an OPM of 16%.

Media production houses were some of the worst performers. UTV Software Communications, Balaji Telefilms and Reliance MediaWorks registered negative revenue growth with a decline of 34%, 7% and 6% respectively. All three registered an operating loss in the June 2011 quarter.


We are listening!

Solve the equation and enter in the Captcha field.

To continue

Sign Up or Sign In


To continue

Sign Up or Sign In



The Scam
24 Year Of The Scam: The Perennial Bestseller, reads like a Thriller!
Moneylife Magazine
Fiercely independent and pro-consumer information on personal finance
Stockletters in 3 Flavours
Outstanding research that beats mutual funds year after year
MAS: Complete Online Financial Advisory
(Includes Moneylife Magazine and Lion Stockletter)