Crosshairs by Sucheta Dalal

FSLRC's Approach Paper is impractical to implement

Even before India embarked on...

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Kejrival ends stir, to start fresh campaign against Khurshid

Kejriwal also alleged that there was a quid pro quo between the Congress, which is supporting Khurshid, and SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav who is facing a disproportionate assets case in the Supreme Court

New Delhi: Social activist Arvind Kejriwal and a group of disabled people on Monday called off their four-day-old protest in Delhi against Union Law Minister Salman Khurshid and announced a fresh campaign against him in his Uttar Pradesh constituency Farrukhabad from 1st November, reports PTI.


Kejriwal also alleged that there was a quid pro quo between the Congress, which is supporting Khurshid, and SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav who is facing a disproportionate assets case in the Supreme Court.


Announcing the end of his protest at Parliament Street, Kejriwal claimed that they have not received a response from Prime Minister's Office (PMO) for an appointment and now they are shifting their battle to Farrukhabad.


"Now the volunteers will go to Farrukhabad. We are getting more documents against Khurshid. Public will make a disabled person fight against him in the next elections and defeat him," he said.


Claiming that Congress and other parties like BJP and SP have been "exposed" in the fight against corruption, he also targeted Manmohan Singh.


"He too has been exposed. He does not speak. Congress and BJP are hand in glove. In a couple of days, (BJP chief Nitin) Gadkari will be exposed," he said.


He said if the country has Right to Reject as Anna Hazare demands, then these people will not get elected.


"During this Dussehra festival, we should not burn the effigies of mythical Ravan (and Meghdhoot and Kumbhakarna).


Let us not burn their effigies. Let us select three people who are Ravans of the present," he said.


He also said that they will participate in a Mahapanchayat of farmers where they will expose alleged links between Robert Vadra, DLF and other companies in land deals.


He appealed Delhiites to switch off their lights for an hour in the evening on November two to protest against power tariff hike in the capital.


On Uttar Pradesh government's probe into the alleged irregularities of Dr Zakir Hussain Memorial Trust run by Khurshid and his wife Louise, he said the Minister and the father-son duo of Yadav and Akhilesh will bail out each other.


Khurshid has denied the allegations of irregularities in his NGO.


"There is enough evidence building up but the question is who will conduct an investigation. Akhilesh Yadav? A case of disproportionate assets is pending against his father Mulayam Singh in Supreme Court. Who will appoint the government lawyer against Mulayam? The Law Minister will do.


"Now Khurshid will save Mulayam Singh and Mulayam's son will save Khurshid," he said addressing IAC activists on the fourth day of their protest at Parliament Street demanding Khurshid's resignation.


Kejriwal presented a disabled person who alleged that he was not provided any help as claimed by the NGO.


"Why is the Congress defending Khurshid's NGO? What is the relationship? Is it Khurshid's NGO or is it the Congress party's NGO? The party is definitely involved somewhere," he said.


Levelling fresh charges against Khurshid, Kejriwal alleged that one Pankaj Kumar from Mainpuri whose name figures in the list of beneficiaries did not get any help from the NGO.


"The document given to government says he has been provided with a hearing aid. But he has problems in his legs.


He was not given any hearing aid," Kejriwal claimed in the presence of Kumar.


Kumar also said he had not received any hearing aid though he did not need it. "I have problems with my legs and not ears," he said.


Vivek Yadav, an activist from Mainpuri, claimed that they had searched for beneficiaries in the locality of Dewar block but they could not locate two names -- Santosh Kumari and Sasi Mohan -- who were provided with wheel-chairs.


The name of another beneficiary Dayaram, who had an eye surgery and is not a handicapped person, also figures in the list, he alleged.


The activist also claimed that he had spoken to one of the officers whose signature has been allegedly forged by the NGO and asked him to join his group.


"The officer now says he does not remember what exactly happened. This is UP politics. One by one all evidences are being erased. Give ten more days and there will be no proof.


The enquiry has already been done. Why we need one more enquiry?" Kejriwal said.




4 years ago

Kejriwal Vs Khurshid

Mango Vs Banana !

Sensex, Nifty still directionless: Monday Closing Report

A small recovery is possible tomorrow but the trend is sideways to down

The market settled in the positive amid choppy trade on support from fast moving consumer goods, oil & gas and realty stocks and a optimism from the European bourses. As we mentioned in our Friday’s closing report, today the Nifty moved in a narrow range of 5,651 and 5,694. The market is still to find a direction and we continue to maintain that the market may probably take 2-3 trading days to form a clear picture. The National Stock Exchange (NSE) saw a lower volume of 55.76 crore shares and an advance decline ratio of 870:865.


The market opened near its previous closing levels on cautiousness ahead of the announcement of the headline inflation data for September and corporate earnings reports from Reliance Industries and Axis Bank.  A subdued trend in the Asian pack also added to the local woes.


The Nifty opened two points down at 5,674 and the Sensex resumed trade at 18,691, 16 points above its previous close. The market stayed in the negative in the morning session on pressure from banking, consumer durables and capital goods sectors.


The Sensex touched its day’s low at around 10.50am while the Nifty fell to its low in noon trade. At the lows the Nifty fell to 5,651 and the Sensex dropped to 18,597.


Bargain hunting by investors at the lows helped the indices recover and emerge into the positive around 1.00pm. A green opening by the key European indices also supported the sentiment.


The buoyancy saw the benchmarks hitting their highs around 1.15pm wherein the Nifty went up to 5,694 and the Sensex climbed to 18,726. The market stayed in the green in the remainder of the trading session, however, nervousness capped the gains.


The Nifty closed 11 points up at 5,687 and the Sensex settled at 18,714, a gain of 38 points over its previous close.


Among the broader markets, the BSE Mid-cap index added 0.06% and the BSE Small-cap climbed 0.43%.


The gainers in the sectoral space were BSE Fast Moving Consumer Goods (up 0.75%); BSE Oil & Gas (up 0.53%); BSE Realty (up 0.52%); BSE Bankex (up 0.37%) and BSE Power (up 0.35%). The losers were led by BSE Consumer Durables (down 0.84%); BSE IT (down 0.76%); BSE TECk (down 0.49%); BSE Auto (down 0.30%) and BSE Capital Goods (down 0.24%).


Eighteen of the 30 stocks on the Sensex closed in the positive. The key gainers were Hindalco Industries (up 1.83%); BHEL (up 1.55%); Cipla (up 1.44%); Bharti Airtel (up 1.15%) and Tata Power (up 1.12%). The major losers were Maruti Suzuki (down 2.46%); Infosys (down 1.25%); Sterlite Industries (down 1.02%); Larsen & Toubro (down 0.88%) and Coal India (down 0.74%).


The top two A Group gainers on the BSE were—Syndicate Bank (up 4.47%) and Godrej Industries (up 3.83%).

The top two A Group losers on the BSE were—TTK Prestige (down 5.08%) and Maruti Suzuki (down 2.46%).


The top two B Group gainers on the BSE were—Somi Conveyor Beltings (up 19.72%) and Minaxi Textiles (up 18.57%).

The top two B Group losers on the BSE were—Paradip Overseas (down 19.97%) and Vinayak Polycon International (down 19.83%).


Out of the 50 stocks listed on the Nifty, 27 stocks settled in the positive. The top gainers were Siemens (up 1.91%); BHEL (up 1.77%); Hindalco Industries (up 1.74%); Cipla (up 1.62%) and Ranbaxy Laboratories (up 1.58%). The main losers were Maruti Suzuki (down 2.64%); Infosys (down 1.32%); Sesa Goa (down 1.29%); Jaiprakash Associates (down 1.19%) and Lupin (down 1%).


Markets in Asia reversed early losses but closed with minor gains on concerns about earnings and the global slowdown.


The Hang Seng added 0.06%; the Jakarta Composite rose 0.05%; the KLSE Composite rose 0.07%; the Nikkei 225 climbed 0.51% and the Straits Times closed 0.04% higher. On the other hand, the Shanghai Composite dropped 0.30%; the Seoul Composite declined 0.40% and the Taiwan Weighted fell 0.24%.


At the time of writing, the CAC 40 of France was 1.26% higher, DAX of Germany gained 0.72% and UK’s FTSE 100 rose 0.48%. Simultaneously, the US stocks futures were trading in the positive, indicating a positive opening of US stocks.


Back home, institutional investors—both foreign and domestic—were net buyers in the equities segment on Friday. While foreign institutional investors pooled funds worth Rs201.16 crore, domestic institutional investors pumped in Rs188.28 crore in stocks.


ITeS major Mahindra Satyam today signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Dehradun-based University of Petroleum & Energy Studies (UPES) to facilitate joint research and development projects and consultancies in the oil and gas industry.


Under the agreement, the engineering students of UPES will gain industrial exposure and acquire practical competencies through training from Mahindra Satyam’s experts. Satyam Computer declined 2.36% to close at Rs107.55 on the NSE.


Engineering and construction firm Unity Infraprojects on Monday said it has received orders worth Rs 315.8 crore. It has received a Rs197.8 crore order from the Bihar Agriculture University and another worth Rs 118 crore for composite work for construction of data centre complex at Bengaluru. The stock gained 0.73% to close at Rs48.05 on the NSE.


Micro Technologies (India), developer and marketer of security devices and solutions has, bagged an order from its Israel distributor to provide its Micro Trolley Management System (Micro TMS) for swifter and safer trolley movements and baggage clearances for Maior International Airports. The stock declined 1.51% to settle at Rs39.25 on the NSE.




4 years ago


As predicted, the Indian government has started its divestment drive. The govt. is behaving like the corrupt and bankrupt zamindar in a Tagore novel, who has to go to the old r a n d i (prostitute) to satisfy his private needs because the younger fresher one is too expensive. As outlined earlier, this is part of its plan. It is talking up the markets, announcing reforms that can never be developed on, and then selling its paper. It will recover Rs 40000 cr. from divestment and Rs. 30000 cr. from spectrum auctions. They say, the money will be applied towards the deficit. In reality it will be used to fund further sops and giveaways in the next budget. The deficit will be kept at 6 % of GDP and they will take their chances with the rating agencies like S and P later. SELL ALL STOCK. ( post below)

India. Reforms. Really?

Much has been made of the “burst of reforms” unleashed by Finance Minister Chidambaram in recent weeks. The stock market has rallied and animal spirits it seems are back. Everybody’s babbling about how the UPA, after eight years in power, has found religion ie “reforms”.

The market is now at 21 times price to earnings (trailing twelve month free float adjusted as per the National Stock Exchange). Once more the mood swings violently. More interestingly the India VIX , the fear index is at 3 year lows of 15. This is usually an indicator of complacency, and historically such lows have signified a massive sell off. The combination of the stretched price to earnings and the VIX means the market is ripe for a big sell off. My two bit as an Ivy educated fund manager in Bombay who has worked internationally on some of the world’s major structural adjustment and economic reform programs.

In reality, the reforms amount to bureaucratic tinkerings with percentages – of a sort that only tax mavens and accountants can comprehend. Witholding taxes go down by a percentage point or two. FII margin percentages change. Service tax percentages for insurance companies change. Now an attempt's been made to increase the percentages foreigners can hold in insurance and pensions. (This last will never pass through Parliament given the unanimous opposition to it). Blah Blah Blah.

The Indian economy, in fact, requires Parashurama’s ax and not the surgeon’s scalpel. The reference is to the mythical woodcutter of Indian mythology who wields a massive axe when needed. Wholesale violence will have to be committed on large areas of India’s economy with Parashurama’s axe, if we are to resume a decent growth rate.

The government had no choice but to unleash this wave of tinkering and call it “reform”. It is trying to keep the capital markets buoyant because it needs to sell or “chipkao” (i.e. stick, as we say in the business) close to Rs 40,000 crores worth of equity. This with spectrum auctions, hopefully plug the budget deficit a little by March. More crucially, it will also free up resources for massive election giveaways in next March’s budget. This is especially needed if the Food Security Bill –Madame Sonia’s chosen strategy for reelection – is to be passed.

Real reforms for India will not happen for a long time. These include financial sector reform, and an end to the financial repression signified by the statutory liquidity ratio. Privatization of the banking system that’s put an end to the ridiculous spectacle of 75 % of the banking system being owned by the government in a market economy. Bankruptcy and exit laws will have to be introduced. Labour market liberalization and the freedom to hire and fire labour will have to be allowed.

The collapsed state of Indian cities will have to be addressed by building 30 to 40 cities to accommodate massive rural urban migration. Land acquisition which is impossible now will have to be addressed. This list does not even include the sector changes required in real estate and infrastructure and sugar, and so on and so on. None of this is happening ever, it seems.

Everybody’s babbling in the media about how crucial the February budget is going to be for the UPA because it will be packed with big ticket sops like the Food Security Bill. Remember game theory however. It is crucial to take your opponent’s reaction into account. The Opposition also knows that the budget will be crucial to the UPA’s reelection chances ! Why then will they allow the UPA to present the budget at all. Especially when they have the numbers and the government is already on life support and in a minority. !!!

The government therefore, will, in all likelihood, fall in November-December, during the winter session of Parliament. Elections will take place in March-April as India needs the school system for a general election. This will allow the Opposition the chance to deny the government’s attempt to pass a budget full of sops and giveaways. The February budget will consequently be a vote on account. This scenario will suit all parties except the Congress and hence it will happen.

Is the market discounting the possibility that in a few weeks, all these guys PC etc. etc. will be gone ? Looking at the way its going up, I think not.

The logical conclusion also is that this is the high point of the markets move this year. India has gone from having the most incompetent FM (Pranab) to the most cunning FM (Chidambaram). The later is deliberately doing all he can to talk up markets to implement his plan. There is little need to oblige him and his plans of using the stock market as a financing vehicle, by buying high and losing one’s hard earned capital.

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