The 5,300-5,400 points area is proving a bottleneck for the bulls and the 5,130-5,185 area for the bears. A breach of either of these ranges (in close) would result in a swift move in the direction of the break
S&P Nifty close: 5,209
Short Term: Sideways Medium Term: Sideways Long Term: Down
The Nifty opened flat and sold off on the very first day of the week (we had envisaged a top on 23rd-24th) itself. A breach of the weekly support of 5,272 saw the Nifty dip marginally below the S1 level in a matter of a couple of hours. However, it continued to drift aimlessly within band and finally closed 81 points (-1.55%) in the red thus wiping out all the gains of the previous week.
The sectoral indices which outperformed were CNX IT (+1.55%) and CNX FMCG (+0.02%) while the gross underperformers were CNX Reality (-6.22%), CNX Infra (-5.32%), CNX Metal (-2.97%), CNX PSE (-3.22%) and CNX MNC (-2.78%). The weekly histogram MACD turned lower, below the median line, which is a warning sign for the bulls that they have to pull back things at the earliest. The volumes during the fall were flat typically signifying the dull sideways movement witnessed for the past few weeks.
Here are some key levels to watch out for this week
1. The Nifty is facing stiff resistance in the 5,300-5,340 area which has to be taken out in close for further upsides.
2. Weekly averages have become positively phased and the price has managed to claw back above them, keeping the bulls’ hopes alive, though whisker thin.
3. Unless and until the 5,378-5,385 points range is taken out in close the bears would hold the edge and a break of the recent low of 5,135 points (in close) would set the cats amongst the pigeons.
The dullness continued as expected and there are not tell-tale signs as yet that we might be readying for a significant directional move as yet. Broadly the 5,300-5,400 point’s area is proving a bottleneck for the bulls and the 5,130-5,185 area for the bears. A breach of either of these ranges (in close) would result in a swift move in the direction of the break. Till then just trade keeping these levels as references and wait for a trending move to begin. Volatility is likely to increase on the 2nd-3rd May but would provide opportunities only for the very short-term traders.
(Vidur Pendharkar works as a consultant technical analyst & chief strategist at www.trend4casting.com)
The Food Safety and Standard Act, 2006, has been introduced to replace the Prevention of Adulteration Act, 1954. “Ironically, the major challenge of the menace of adulteration has not been dealt with in the new Act but rather more emphasis has been laid down on ‘mis-branded’ food,” the Confederation of All India Traders said
A traders association has urged the union health ministry to constitute an expert committee to look in to the provisions of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006, and has also announced nationwide protest against it. Calling the provisions as draconian, unrealistic and impracticable, the association feels that it will impact the businesses of small and medium traders. The Act proposes separate licences for each enterprise and separate audit reports for various products.
BC Bhartia, secretary general, Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) said, “The Act in question prescribes the traders to prepare an audit report, obtain clearance from state pollution control board, get a no-objection certificate from the municipal corporation, medical certificates of workers, graduate technologist and a separate audit report for products made from milk, which is not possible under the Indian food conditions. The Act is framed is in utter disregard of the ground realties and will promote big corporate houses to enter into food business.”
It further added that, “This would trigger further corruption and would allow government machinery to harass the traders-said CAIT,” he added.
The traders association has called upon union health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad to constitute an expert committee of food policy analysts, government officials and representative of trade to review the provisions of the Act.
The Food Safety and Standard Act, 2006, has been introduced to replace the Prevention of Adulteration Act 1954. “Ironically, the major challenge of the menace of adulteration has not been dealt with in the new Act but rather more emphasis has been laid down on ‘mis-branded’ food, which does not fall under the ambit of ‘adulteration’. Adulteration is a heinous crime which cannot be misbranded because of distinction in implications of classification. Such a provision will encroach upon the rights of the consumers in the country. The Act will promote adulteration or demote it, is a question?” CAIT said in a release.
CAIT is conducting a national conference of trade leaders on 10th and 11th May at New Delhi to discuss a national agitation. Earlier, traders from Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh had already held a trade bandh for four and three days, respectively. On 25th April, Madhya Pradesh-based MP Sumitra Mahajan has also raised the issue in the Lok Sabha.
The story of President Pratibha Patil’s palatial home was doing the rounds for quite sometime. However, it was only when Moneylife first wrote about it on 11th April and then followed it up with nine other articles that it triggered off a national debate in the media and social networking sites—a remarkable example of what the RTI, Internet, Twitter and Facebook combine can do what the largest of media companies cannot and will not do. A recap by Moneylife columnist Vinita Deshmukh
I happened to meet Col Suresh Patil (retd) at a felicitation function of Pune’s Padma awardees about four weeks back, when he mentioned about President Pratibha Patil building a palatial post retirement home in Pune. It was a short conversation but I kept this at the back of my mind and decided to follow it up, especially because he mentioned he had procured some documents under the RTI (Right to Information) Act.
Immediately the next day, I called him up and asked him to meet me along with the documents he was talking about the previous evening. When I went through the documents I was shocked to note that as against the home ministry rules wherein a retired president of India is eligible for maximum 4,498 sq ft of an ‘existing’ government accommodation, documents showed that she was building a mansion on a whopping 2,42,000 sq ft land. I wondered why the Pune media had not gone to town with this story, despite the fact that he had held a press conference. News items though had appeared, on an issue which was too potent to be tamed/silenced.
Three press conferences were held since July 2011 but there was tame reaction from the media in Pune. Col Suresh Patil (retd) who took up the campaign against this “land grab” not only held press conferences but visited newspaper offices to tell his story, but no one was listening. By any standard of journalism, it was a mind-blowing story for any journalist—of the President of India, Pratibha Patil who holds the highest office in the country, building a palatial post retirement mansion on a sprawling 2,42,ooo sq ft prime defence land in Khadki.
I penned this story with all relevant details in my RTI column of 11th April, which appears in Moneylife every Wednesday (and of which I am also the Consulting Editor).
Sucheta Dalal, the firebrand journalist who broke the Harshad Mehta scam in April 1992 and is the Managing Editor of Moneylife and Debashis Basu, the Founder Editor and Publisher, immediately sensed the importance of this story. They not only gave it the prominent place of on www.moneylife.in but used the social networking sites to good effect. Sucheta, who has more than 20,000 followers on the Twitter, tweeted the story link and so did Debashis. They also uploaded it on the Facebook. Lo and behold, by the morning of 12th April, it had gone viral and my story titled “President Pratibha Patil grabs 2,61,000 sq ft of land meant for soldiers and officers” had aroused the entire nation. In these days of the Internet, the marriage between an Internet website and social media networking can be formidable, as proved by the editors of Moneylife in first uploading the story prominently and then transmitting it in cyberspace.
Thereafter, the electronic and the print media followed up the story, with CNN IBN managing editor Rajdeep Sardesai giving credit to Moneylife and taking up the issue first in electronic media. And then everyone else picked up the story and highlighted it in their respective channels/newspapers. Even then, Indian Express tried to side with the powerful by blowing up the story on Col Suresh Patil who was being maliciously targeted by the Defence Estate Office for encroachment on some temporary sheds of his outhouse. This newspaper had nothing to say about one of the largest and shocking cases of irregularity done by none other than the President of India.
Thereafter, Sucheta and Debashis welcomed every story I wrote on the issue, based on additional documents under RTI by activists Col Suresh Patil (retd), Comm Ravindra Pathak and Anoop Awasthi, a formal naval officer and well known RTI activist (who was the one who procured vital documents under RTI).
I filed 10 stories between 11th April and 27th April. In these times when editors across newspapers prefer to be status quo-ists and don’t take chances with stories that take on the establishment, it was the courage of conviction of Sucheta and Debashis that brought the truth to tens of thousands of readers across the country and the globe. Each of my stories was placed on top of the website and each one was posted on Facebook and Twitter to a large body of followers.
Of course, we never expected the story to reach the logical end so soon. It is an example of how democracy can win if the media plays it strong and powerful, the way Moneylife consistently did. There is also one bigger lesson to learn from the outcome of this story. That, every journalist should make RTI as an integral and mandatory part of his or her professional career. As it is—even with the ‘proof’ through RTI that land was illegally given to Ms Patil, the President of India’s official press release on Friday mentioned about vilification campaign against Pratibha Patil. However, the fact is, the black and white documents made her defence-less and she was compelled to surrender the land, within four weeks of Moneylife having broke the story.
Last but not the least, hats off to the three soldiers—Col Suresh Patil (retd), Comm Ravindra Pathak (retd) and Anoop Awasthi, a naval officer of short service commission. All three of them tenaciously fought the battle against all odds, with a mission to pursue it to the logical end. The next week, they had planned for a PIL in the Supreme Court, with Sucheta playing the mediator between them and the best lawyers.
However, good sense prevailed upon the President and she surrendered the land. So, it is apt that she be given due credit for upholding the highest tradition of democracy wherein peoples’ sentiments and laws are respected.
A very big lesson from this story is that, please do not be cynical. I kept questioning myself, “Will anything happen?” It happened, and really fast. Long live democracy. Long live spirited journalism and activism. Long live peoples’ voices. Long live RTI and may it be used in the service of public-interest journalism.
(Vinita Deshmukh is a consulting editor of Moneylife. She is also an RTI activist and convener of the Pune Metro Jagruti Abhiyaan. She is the recipient of prestigious awards like the Statesman Award for Rural Reporting, which she won twice in 1998 and 2005, and the Chameli Devi Jain award for outstanding media person for her investigation on Dow Chemicals. She co-authored the book “To The Last Bullet - The Inspiring Story of A Braveheart - Ashok Kamte” with Vinita Kamte. She can be reached at [email protected])