BlackBerry finally sets up server in Mumbai

After much controversy, BlackBerry has finally set up its server in Mumbai following intense pressure from the government to provide a mechanism for lawful interception of its messenger services and Nokia has been asked to follow suit

New Delhi: After much controversy, BlackBerry has finally set up its server in Mumbai following intense pressure from the government to provide a mechanism for lawful interception of its messenger services and Nokia has been asked to follow suit, reports PTI.

During a high-level meeting at the home ministry recently, officials of the security agencies were informed that Canada-based Research in Motion has installed the servers in Mumbai.

The servers have been inspected by a team of officers and permission for direct linkage for lawful interception was expected to be issued shortly, a presentation made at the meeting held in the office of the home secretary said.

About the Nokia Push Mail, the Department of Telecom (DoT) also prescribed a similar policy as in the case adopted by the BlackBerry, the presentation said.

The government and BlackBerry manufacturers were in a logjam over its services in India as security agencies had raised a red flag over its operations citing non availability of method to intercept its messenger service and enterprise mail.

However, there was a climb-down by the government on intercepting mail sent through BlackBerry Enterprise Services (BES) which decrypts the messages and sends it to the email server of the service provider where it remains stored in decrypted form. Then the message is pushed to the BlackBerry device in encrypted form.

DoT secretary informed that currently there are about 5000 enterprise servers for BES. Director Intelligence Bureau Nehchal Sandhu noted that these are communications between the employees of the enterprise only and, therefore, are not of "high concern" for security or Intelligence agencies.

"However, it was decided to obtain list and location of the servers from telecom service providers," the presentation said.

RIM representatives had explained that BlackBerry mobile device sends the encrypted email which is sent to BES located with the service provider.

The government had said the onus of giving access to security agencies to monitor the information on these smart phones lies with the service providers.

According to the licensing conditions, the service providers are liable to put in a mechanism to allow security agencies to intercept any conversation or message of any subscriber whenever required.

As telecom service providers like Airtel, Vodafone, RCom, the Tatas and the government-run BSNL and MTNL are offering BlackBerry services, it is the responsibility of these operators to ensure that the security agencies get access to all services they offer.

RIM has its operations in 175 countries.

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First all India retail inflation data tomorrow

Welcoming the new index, experts said it will take time, may be few years, before the CPI will replace WPI as benchmark for the government decision making and RBI's monetary policy

New Delhi: Starting Tuesday the government will release the nation-wide Consumer Price Index (CPI) on a monthly basis for better reflection of retail price movement and to help the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) take effective monetary policy steps to deal with inflation, reports PTI.

The new CPI, according to experts, will eventually replace the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) for policy actions to deal with the price situation.

The monthly CPI will be in addition to the three retail price indices-for agricultural labourers, rural labourers and industrial workers-prepared by the ministry of labour.

The new data will be prepared by the ministry of statistics and programme implementation (MOSPI).

"CPI uses defined basket of goods and services that represents purchasing pattern of a particular household. Since this is driven from the consumption side, it provides a relatively realistic view on how consumers are affected," Deloitte, Haskins & Sells director Anis Chakravarty said.

He said that for these reasons a reliable indication of demand side pressures and inflation is received from utilising CPI as a measure.

Welcoming the new index, experts said it will take time, may be few years, before the CPI will replace WPI as benchmark for the government decision making and RBI's monetary policy.

WPI, as per Mr Chakravarty, "poorly reflects the cost of living because it does not focus on the prices at which the consumer is purchasing the goods".

The WPI measures the price changes from the production side and not from the consumption side and hence it provides a skewed picture, he added.

Globally also the consumer price index is taken as the main benchmark.

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Bajaj Allianz Women Critical Illness Plan – Does gender-specific cover help?

While the concept is appealing, most of what is covered is also available in a regular critical illness product. The new product is neither inexpensive nor does it offer lifelong renewal

Bajaj Allianz Women Critical Illness Plan is touted as the first-of-its-kind to cover women specific illness. It does offer some benefits that are not offered in regular critical illness products like paying 50% of sum insured (SI) on birth of a child with any one or more congenital disabilities, covers burns and lump-sum payment of Rs25,000 each as children's education bonus and loss of job within three months of diagnosis of a critical illness.

The drawback is that the women specific critical illness like breast cancer, fallopian tube cancer, cervical cancer and so on are already covered by regular critical illness products along with other type of cancers. Moreover, the regular critical illness product covers many others like coronary artery bypass surgery, first heart attack, kidney failure, stroke, multiple sclerosis and so on.

The premium pricing is comparable to Bajaj Allianz's own regular critical illness product, but gives less value due to restricted illness covers and the maximum SI is only Rs2 lakh. The cover is only for age group 21 to 55 years whereas some regular critical illness products in the market allow lifelong renewal (subject to conditions).

Advantage  

  •   Covers children education bonus of Rs25,000 and loss of job within three months of diagnosis of a critical illness pays Rs25,000 (both subject to conditions)
     
  •  Covers 50% of SA on birth of a child with any one or more congenital disabilities like Downs' syndrome, cleft palate, spina bifida and so on. Only for first two children and not available if birth happens after policyholder attains the age of 40 years
  •   Burns - 40% or more of the body surface area

Disadvantage  

  •  Product premium not expensive, but less value for money. E.g. Gives list of different women specific cancer, but regular critical illness product covers all types of cancer
     
  •   Covers restricted number of critical illness. Regular critical illness product covers wider range of illnesses like first heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, etc.
     
  •   Product is available till 55 years of age and maximum SI is Rs2 lakh
     
  •    The premium for Bajaj Allianz Women Critical Illness for 35 year old woman buying Rs2 lakh insurance cover is Rs938. The premium for regular Bajaj Allianz Critical Illness product for 35 year old person buying Rs3 lakh insurance cover is Rs900.
 
Critical illness policy provides for a lump-sum amount on being diagnosed with any of the named critical illnesses. The claim will be settled on the basis of critical illness diagnosis proof and the necessary survival period. It does not require any proof of hospitalization or treatment. The policy terminates with payment of critical illness benefit. It excludes critical illness arising due to pre-existing disease.

Critical illness products have gained importance due to lowered age when critical illnesses like cancer, heart attacks strike, which can be attributed to stressful schedules and sedentary lifestyles. Surging healthcare costs and expenses other than hospitalisation which are not covered by mediclaim have made critical illness products important. Critical illness product premium just like mediclaim premium is eligible for tax exemption up to Rs20,000 under section 80(D) of Income Tax Act.

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COMMENTS

Zabin

5 years ago

I would like to know whether it has tax benefits.

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