Money & Banking
Demonetisation woes due to bank officers' role: Panagariya
In implementing demonetisation what did not go as planned was that "a lot of bank officials really played it in the way that they should not have played it" and it was on a scale not anticipated, according to Arvind Panagariya, Vice Chairman of Niti Aayog.
 
He defended the demonetisation of the Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes calling them a part of an overall strategy to fight black money and to introduce developments like digitisation of currency.
 
"Remember this was not a step taken in isolation," he said. "It sent a very strong signal, 'Look the government's strategy is to combat the black money'."
 
He was answering students' questions after a lecture on India's economic policy and performance organised by the Deepak and Neera Raj Centre on Indian economic policies at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs.
 
"It is a gigantic operation," he said. "Those who have been critical of the RBI have not understood what a gigantic task it was to remonetise the economy.
 
"The money that was completely out of the system, a substantial part of the cash that was in circulation was not in circulation, was not in the formal economy," he said. 
 
"A lot of these the RBI (Reserve Bank of India) knew was not coming through the banking system at all. So they all needed to come back.
 
"Demonetisation sends a very, very strong signal that the day when the central government was complacent was over, that if you are going to misbehave we are going to see to it that you pay for it," he added.
 
The demonestisation is being followed up by a number of other things like restrictions on contributing funds for elections, and "the digitsation of the transactions, big time," Panagariya said. "So all in all it was a necessary step in the process."
 
He also praised the RBI for the "admirable role" it paid in keeping the rupee stable in November through two international developments - Brexit and the election of Donald Trump as the US President - that made an adverse impact on most developing country economies.
 
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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COMMENTS

Kunal Singh

4 months ago

What does he even mean by “a lot of bank officials really played it in the way that they should not have played it”? Weren't the banks being played by continuous directions and notifications from the North Block and Mint Street? Was it the bank officials who were responsible for printing and circulating money or is it the RBI which is the authority responsible for this exercise?

The banks worked overtime and on holidays while the RBI (holy be thy name) enjoyed their holidays. Currency Chests filled with specified bank notes and there was no sign of the new notes making its way to the banks from the currency press. The MoS Finance apparently instructed banks to open currency chests overnight. Who's clueless here?

The goals were conveniently shifted from black money to digital. A former RBI Governor said on record that he wouldn't take up the job in the current environment. Trump's election win saved Govt the blushes of DeMo.

Where's the black money? The pseudo-intellectuals gave a huge bounty of dividend from the RBI even as the DeMo exercise was underway. Alas, it looks like Central Bank accounting doesn't work that way.

Gopalakrishnan T V

4 months ago

Implementation has miserably failed is a fact which cannot be ignored and which ever institutions have failed to implement needs to be fixed mercilessly. Lots of expectations were there from Demonetisation and a casual approach to implement the same defeated the whole purpose of it.

Pradeep Kumar M Sreedharan

5 months ago

My apartment, out in the market since September fetched only two enquiries, that too after Dec 31st, both from bank staff - strange, I said and strange it is.

jaideep shirali

5 months ago

Quite obviously, Mr Panagariya, like all the concerned Ministers and bureaucrats, RBI or otherwise, is clueless about the DeMo exercise. Maybe a simple calculation should have helped him. A day's bank strike costs the economy between Rs 25,000 to 50,000 crores loss. Multiply that figure by 50 and even compared to Rs 15 lakh cr in currency, it shows how stupid the exercise was. Goalposts shifted, even till now, as each goal was evidently ambiguous. Add to that the cost of printing new notes, recalibration of ATMs, logistics cost and the fact that the Govt was short of currency notes from Day 1. And yes, the innumerable rule changes by people who think they knew all but are ignorant. DeMo is a failure, but bureaucrats like him will continue to get their DA hikes and benefits, how does it matter who is affected ?

REPLY

Govinda Warrier

In Reply to jaideep shirali 5 months ago

I'm reminded of Kapil Sibal of 2G SCAM days. He used to multiply any alleged loss to GOI by zero! Now demonetization loss is equal to number of days since November 8, 2016 multiplied by "X" where X is number representing my enemity to....

Beena Kothari

5 months ago

Who can say with confidence that this entire exercise was successful? No one not even govt officials with the proof.. Now the data analysis by the IT department is going to create another set of problems for commoners.. Black money still remains illusive and only for talking reference.. Most of the hoarders have gone laughing away...

Rahul Pande

5 months ago

Very interesting.A bad workman always blames his tools.

S Santhanam

5 months ago

In a way to put restrictions on withdrawal by RBI or government does not stand the test of the courts. In other words such instructions are illegal.

S Santhanam

5 months ago

When you are given a loan by a bank it is expected to be repaid either on demand or as per terms of loan contract agreement signed by the borrower. Similarly if a customer deposits money in his savings account it is a contract signed by the bank to the customer that it will pay
any amount to him or her to the
extent of balance available in the account. It is similar to the customer lending his money to the bank on conditions mutually agreed upon.
Now to put conditions for withdrawal of money from
the savings account is violation of the contractual obligation by the bank and it should compensate the customer by paying higher interest on the savings account. Mutadis mutandi it is applicable to current accounts too.

S Santhanam

5 months ago

When you are given a loan by a bank it is expected to be repaid either on demand or as per terms of loan contract agreement signed by the borrower. Similarly if a customer deposits money in his savings account it is a contract signed by the bank to the customer that it will pay
any amount to him or her to the
extent of balance available in the account. It is similar to the customer lending his money to the bank on conditions mutually agreed upon.
Now to put conditions for withdrawal of money from
the savings account is violation of the contractual obligation by the bank and it should compensate the customer by paying higher interest on the savings account. Mutadis mutandi it is applicable to current accounts too.

US Vads

5 months ago

It is a thoroughly disappointing reading from none other than Vice-Chairman of Niti Ayog kind of body - highly coloured and absolutely lacking objectivity. It is simple - every task , more importantly a task like demonetisation that destabilises and plays on common man emotions - has to show case the clear cut objectives. This one does not. Till date, the RBI , the internal arm of government, and the government together could not come out with a complete picture what it attained or number analysis like - how much this exercise cost , how much black money out of how many the raids conducted and who are all searched is projected to be entering the exchequer ultimately - let it take decades though. Go to any ATM even now, you just stare at the message that önly Rs.2000 notes are dispensed" and the bankers coldly say "we dont have other denominations" and so on. Is this continued harassment the objective? By saying it is a part of larger set of actions that follow is only to fool the public who just dont have any means to question the government on any inconvenience. Is the goal to have a universe of people as database to target in future? If digitisation is a part of the game, is this the only way to kick start? Today we go to any small time shop keeper or an upcoming clinic, they say it costs 1% + surcharge on the amount swiped - it is real and not fiction like the one we hear from this article. Carry a Rs.2000 note and feel eternally shaky if the merchant would accept or deny for want of change. As against every inconvenience one quotes, there is only one answer - it is all to attack the black money! but we see the municipal authorities , police, every government officer who has been given the power to serve you - all of them want bribes and now in multiples of 2000. This is not a political view . we dont care a damn for any party that supports or opposes. The problems in the small rural areas and even in cities at odd places regarding the currency availability is real. Million bullets fired in all directions to hit a bunch cash hoarders who ultimately escaped or would escape in the crowd of common people who received the bullets for no reason - this is what has been achieved. A non-stop political narratives can be spun for another few years around this act - this another add on. Whom are we blaming - bank officers? the government came up with so many changes every now and then . Will these not cause hardship to people and disruption to the administrative process of the banks? Net , net it has been a big political game causing harm to the innocent public irreparably.

MOHAN SIROYA

5 months ago

Being a part of the Government , it is but natural that Mr. Panagariya is defending demonetization. He did not say how and what way it has helped economy or the common people of India. Although ,he mentions that the Bank Officials did irregularities not expected of them, he has not mentioned what action the Government has taken against such truant
officials. What use this piece ? Is anyone convinced by what he said ?

REPLY

Panna Thakkar

In Reply to MOHAN SIROYA 5 months ago

Yes what Mr Panagariya said is right some corrupt bank officials have done wrong things and it is also true that NPA in banks are because of political hands and these corrupt bank officials but no Govt till date not even Narendra Modi govt has taken any step against them Why Why . The properties & assest should be confiscated instaed the corrupt bank officials have retired and are enjoying pensions . Is Narendra modi listening?

US Vads

5 months ago

It is a thoroughly disappointing reading from none other than Vice-Chairman of Niti Ayog kind of body - highly coloured and absolutely lacking objectivity. It is simple - every task , more importantly a task like demonetisation that destabilises and plays on common man emotions - has to show case the clear cut objectives. This one does not. Till date, the RBI , the internal arm of government, and the government together could not come out with a complete picture what it attained or number analysis like - how much this exercise cost , how much black money out of how many the raids conducted and who are all searched is projected to be entering the exchequer ultimately - let it take decades though. Go to any ATM even now, you just stare at the message that önly Rs.2000 notes are dispensed" and the bankers say coldly say "we dont have other denominations" and so on. is this continued harassment the objective? By saying it is a part of larger set of actions that follow is only to fool the public who just dont have any means to question the government on any inconvenience. Is the goal to have a universe of people as database to target in future? If digitisation is a part of the game, is this the only to kick start? Today we go to any small time shop keeper or an upcoming clinic, they say it costs 1% + surcharge on the amount swiped - it is real and not fiction like the one we hear from this article. Carry a Rs.2000 note and feel eternally shaky if the merchant would accept or deny for want of change. As against every convenience one quotes, there is only one answer - it is all to attack the black money! but we see the municipal authorities , police, every government officer who has been given the power to serve you - all of them want bribes and now in multiples of 2000. This is not a political view . we dont care a damn for any party that supports or opposes. The problems in the small rural areas and even in cities at odd places regarding the currency availability is real. Million bullets fired in all directions to hit a bunch cash hoarders who ultimately escaped or would escape in the crowd of common people who received the bullets for no reason - this is what has been achieved. A non-stop political narratives can be spun for another few years around this act - this another add on. Whom are we blaming - bank officers? the government came up with so many changes every now and then . will these not cause hardship to people and the bankers. Net , net it has been a big political game causing harm to the innocent public irreparably.

SuchindranathAiyerS

5 months ago

Panagariya blames the Bank Officers. I say Most Bank Officers are Government Officers and, therefore, no different

SuchindranathAiyerS

5 months ago

The demonetization in India was drastic but essential. The vital element of surprise was remarkable. The difficulties arose out of the need for surprise.

For example the new 2,000/- notes, and large quantities of 100s were to be available, with the ATM re calibration done, a month before the Prime Minister's announcement. However the Reserve Bank and the Banking system are as lackadaisical as any other Police Station, Government Office or Court after Seventy Years of Quota-Corruption Raj by the Constitutionally Certified Congenitally Impaired, and took their time. Any time pressure applied on this rusty machinery would have spiked the secrecy.
The Banks, like the RBI became corrupt when they came under the control of the Politicians and Bureaucrats (RBI 1947 and Banks in 1969)
There was an enormous over hang of corruption and other criminal money eliminated by this. The various insurgencies and the Chinese backed Maoist operations have been brought to a dead halt. More importantly, the forged currency being injected by Pakistan and China to destabilize the Indian economy and foment terrorism and insurgency have been wiped out. The most telling demonstration of this is the manner in which the forged currency funded violence and rebellion in the Kashmir Valley came to a dead halt.

There has been a seventy year accumulation of black cash and black cash funded wealth in the country. The ten years of the Manmohan Singh "Coalition Dharma" that enabled the "Family that loots together to stay together" to chalk up scam after scam with enormous profligacy and pork built up a spurious inflation funded GDP without underlying employment or wealth distribution rather like what is happening in the West owing to war profligacy.

Huge non productive capital investments enforced by foreign inward investments with nothing else to buy was drowning the country with excess capacity.

In addition, the inflation funded "wealth" economy had inflated housing out of reach of even the upper middle class let alone the poor.

The enormous private currency hoardings of judges, police men, bureaucrats and other corrupt cogs of the state have also been wiped off.

This will reduce the deficit and release staggering sums for infrastructure, defence, education and health, all of which have been starving during Manmohan's ten years but have been fasting like a Gandhi for sixty years before that.

Remarkably, while the opposition and their paid media make much ado about the inconvenience, the ordinary man on the street is thrilled with this darkness before dawn. They have a better grip on monetary economics than the "Economists". Probably because, unlike the politicians, jounralists and economists, they have been forced by penury to a lifetime of monetary economy.

Despite these enormous advantages, black cash may soon return because the fundamental processes of non accountability, incompetence and corruption that generate this have not been addressed. Nor has the accumulations of black wealth in the form of land, bullion, and precious stones (particularly diamonds) been addressed. But it will take several decades to build up again into the menace that it had become, threatening the fundamental sovereignty of the Nation. This will give Mr. Narendra Modi's Government the time to take even sterner and more long lasting measures that it was mandated to do by the Indian voters in 2014.


The real enemy is India's failed Constitution and Policies that created the Quota (reservations)-Extortion (Corruption) Raj.

India is now home to 30% of the World's poor (World Bank 2016), 135 out of 172 countries in Human and Social Development and 143 out of 172 countries in Internal Peace and Stability (UNDP 2015). For amending this failed constitution and ending the failed policies of the last seven decades, Mr. Modi will require a much larger mandate than a mere Parliamentary Majority.

REPLY

S Santhanam

In Reply to SuchindranathAiyerS 5 months ago

One is doing what is within the reach called plucking low hanging
fruits ...in that respect Modiji did not show that conviction... He could have removed removed donations by cash for political parties. Instead he went ahead making it more opaque by introducing bearer bonds scheme thus protecting both the corporate and the recipient of political parties.

Though a few sting Operations showing political parties helped in currency exchange fraud no action is taken.
Reddy house marriage expenditure reportedly 500 crore rupees . Nothing seemed to have happened to get at the truth.

S Santhanam

In Reply to SuchindranathAiyerS 5 months ago

One is doing what is within the reach called plucking low hanging
fruits ...in that respect Modiji did not show that conviction... He could have removed removed donations by cash for political parties. Instead he went ahead making it more opaque by introducing bearer bonds scheme thus protecting both the corporate and the recipient of political parties.

Though a few sting Operations showing political parties helped in currency exchange fraud no action is taken.
Reddy house marriage expenditure reportedly 500 crore rupees . Nothing seemed to have happened to get at the truth.

Govinda Warrier

5 months ago

As Simple Indian has repeated some 'political' arguments against withdrawal of legal tender status of high value currency notes from November 8, 2016(it was not demonetization), some clarifications may be in order. Whatever be the immediate impact on the economy, mainstreaming of huge quantities of money which was with people before November 8, 2016 will have a long term positive impact on the Indian financial sector. Like money, other domestic assets including gold and jewelry need to be mapped and accounted. There are several areas including agricultural income and real estate, where GOI's own approach is lax. Corrective measures had to have a beginning and ensuring assets held in the form of currency was brought back to banking channel was a right step, in the right direction. It's comforting to see that vested interests could not delay the process. Now, let debates resume and let legislative bodies proceed with corrective measures, wherever there had been lapses in implementation.

Laws approved by parliament take 261 days to be enforced
It takes an average of 261 days for a parliamentary law to come into force, according to a report by Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy, a think-tank.
 
The report analysed 44 laws enacted by Parliament between 2006 and 2015 and calculated the average number of days between a law receiving presidential assent and coming into force.
 
More than half of the laws analysed entered into force within six months.
 
After receiving presidential assent, implementation of the law requires two more steps. First, the government must bring it into force through notification in the Official Gazette. The second step -- which is not essential but integral to the practical working of the law -- is the framing of rules. Most laws require rules in accordance with the law -- for its implementation -- approved by the legislature, before they are presented to each house of parliament.
 
"Most members of Parliament (MPs) are unaware of how long it takes for rules to be framed for bringing a law into force," Shashi Tharoor, MP from Thiruvananthapuram, said in an email interview to IndiaSpend. "Though the rules are supposed to be tabled in Parliament, they are almost never discussed. So, they pass by unnoticed among the welter of other papers laid on the table by ministers."
 
As many as 92 hours of Lok Sabha disruption cost India Rs 144 crore during the 10th session of the current Lok Sabha, which ended on December 16, 2016.
 
The delay in implementing the laws is an issue of betraying public expectations rather than wasting taxpayer's money, added Tharoor.
 
"The public sees from media reporting that a law has been passed or changed, and naturally expects that what they have read in the newspapers is the new reality. It is wrong to keep them waiting for 261 days to adjust to what they are told is the law of the land," Tharoor said.
 
The Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act 2015 took 311 days (more than 10 months) to get implemented.
 
The Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha on 11th May, 2015 and the Rajya Sabha on 13th May, 2015.
 
As many as 644 declarations of undisclosed foreign income and assets were received under this act, and Rs 2,428 crore was collected in taxes. Ninety per cent of the collection came from five per cent of declarations, according to reports.
 
Another important bill, the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016, was passed in the budget session of the Parliament (in March 2016) but the notification of its provisions began only in September after the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) received statutory backing and the regulations under the Act were notified.
 
The UIDAI was constituted in 2009 but that was through an executive notification issued by the erstwhile Planning Commission. It received statutory backing after the Aadhaar Act, 2016, was enacted.
 
The bill was introduced as a money bill by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which generated outrage among the opposition parties.
 
A money bill can only be introduced in the Lok Sabha, or the lower house. The Rajya Sabha, or the upper house, can recommend changes to a money bill. However, these aren't binding and, if the lower house rejects the suggestion, the bill is automatically passed.
 
Supreme Court judge Madan B. Lokur had criticised the government in March 2016 for delaying the implementation of the Juvenile Justice Act 2015.
 
"I would imagine that before you come out with the Act, you have to have the rules in place," Justice Lokur told The Hindu. "Such a view would apply to any law. You have got to get everything in place."
 
Of the five laws that took the longest time to be implemented, 1,249 days elapsed between the Carriage By Road Act 2007 receiving presidential assent and the first set of rules being framed.
 
It was introduced in the Parliament in December 2005 but got approval from the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha in September and August 2007, respectively, according to PRS Legislative, a think-tank.
 
The Manual of Parliamentary Procedure in India has recommended a time limit of 15 days for framing rules, after publication of approval in the official gazette. Such rules are called subordinate legislation and may be referred to as rules, regulations, bye-laws, orders, and notification
 
However, only 34% (15 of 44 laws analysed) adhered to the time limit, while 49 per cent of laws took 15-60 days in the Lok Sabha and 56 per cent in the Rajya Sabha.
 
The time taken to present the rules before each house was calculated from the date they were published in the official gazette (if the house was in session) or from the date the next session began (when the house was not in session).
 
"Once a bill is passed, political leaders tend to move on to the next urgent issue, leaving such issues of detail to officials to work out. It is possible that the bureaucrats tasked with the writing of rules are themselves overburdened or distracted by other duties -- I don't know -- but if so, remedies must be found to increase their number and ensure that the completion of this task is accorded due priority," said Tharoor.
 
Two rules (National Commission for Protection of Child Rights Rules, 2006 before the Lok Sabha and Science and Engineering Research Board Rules, 2010 before the Rajya Sabha) faced delays of 174 and 166 days, respectively.
 
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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COMMENTS

Avinash Murkute

5 months ago

Yes, rules should be complimentary to laws and that will also reduce corruption and ignorance amongst all stakeholders. Such rules (administrative laws) may also be available in a central / state repository online and needless to say, only competent authorities can amend them. Otherwise even a Sarpanch or village serving officer try to be judicial authority. That is the agony of laws.

GLN Prasad

5 months ago

Yes. Hon Justice is absolutely right in his comments: I would imagine that before you come out with the Act, you have to have the rules in place," Justice Lokur t""I would imagine that before you come out with the Act, you have to have the place," "Such a view would apply to any law. You have got to get everything in place." But unfortunately the implementing agency itself overlooks the facts of earlier rules and regulations, and hesitate to act stating that they are unable to take any action as bill has not taken the shape of act (Ex: Citizen charter, most disappointingly dealt by DOPT)

Despite dismal record, Jharkhand readies for Global Investors Summit
Despite a dismal track record in implementing projects -- 74 of 125 MoUs have fallen through since 2005 -- Jharkhand is readying for its first Global Investors Summit on February 16-17, with the opposition Congress charging the Raghubar Das-led BJP government of spending "more than Rs 100 crore" on the event.
 
The 74 MoUs of projects that fell through would have brought in Rs 2.93 lakh crore ($43 billion) of the approximately Rs 5 lakh crore promised, and would have catapulted Jharkhand from a tottering rural economy to a vibrant, industrialised state.
 
Of the projects that got off the ground, only one -- that of Jindal Steel, with an investment of Rs 10,000 crore -- is actually up and running, while the others have been stalled largely due to problems relating to land acquisition or have shut down due to a variety of reasons.
 
Most importantly, two ultra-mega power projects (UMPPs) -- Hazaribagh and Deoghar -- are hanging in balance. Between them, they would have generated slightly less than 8,000 MW of power.
 
In sum, had all the projects fructified, urbanisation would have gathered pace as they would have seen the growth of 100 townships and the creation of 600,000 new jobs.
 
Arcelor Mittal, owned by steel king Laxmi Niwas Mittal, had proposed an investment of Rs 40,000 crore for a 12 million tonnes per annum steel plant. However, the ambitious project has been stuck for a while now as the company managed to acquire just 10 acres of land in Petarwar block of Bokaro district.
 
Moreover, it did not show any interest in inking the second-level MoU as the earlier agreement inked with the company was cancelled after the state government came out with the new industrial policy in 2012. The company, on its part, has merely hinted that it would look into the project after it manages to bag iron-ore mines.
 
Mega projects of Adani, Vedanta and Tata Steel are also stuck due to land-related issues. The Adani group needs 1,600 acres for its Rs 20,000 crore power plant, and also 2,000 acres more for its coal and gas project.
 
Jindal's proposed power plant in Pathargama of Godda district has also failed to see any progress as there is a dispute over the land needed for the project. The Tatas, too, are facing various land-related hurdles to expand their projects in the state.
 
Others, including Vallabh Steel (Gamharia), Pawanjay Steel (Lohardaga), Adhunik Steel (Gamharia), Kanti Steel (Galudih), Neelanchal Steel (Kandra) and Abhijeet Group (Saraikela) have shut their plants due to one reason or another.
 
Now, to make state investor-friendly, the Jharkhand government has amended two land acts to ease the acquisition process.
 
Little wonder, then, that the opposition is not amused.
 
"More than Rs 100 crore will be spent on the investors summit. The state government has failed to create a proper environment for investors. Many industries have been closed after the BJP government led by Raghubar Das came to power in the state," Jharkhand Congress General Secretary Kishore Sahdeo told IANS.
 
"Instead of making efforts to avoid closure of the industries, Raghubar Das spent crores of rupees on holding road shows and touring foreign countries. Jharkhand is one of the states where criminals have a free hand. Every day rape and murder cases are reported in the state. On an average, two to three girls are raped in the state," he added, maintaining that the dismal law and order situation was showing the state in poor light.
 
The BJP, however, is having none of this.
 
"We have to move forward from past experience. Now Jharkhand has a stable government and the political situation has changed. Jharkhand's rating has improved. In the current political scenario, there is an environment in favour of investors," Jharkhand BJP spokesperson J.B. Tubid told IANS. 
 
It's a different thing that Jharkhand's ranking in ease of doing business and luring investors has slipped from the third to seventh position, according to an October statement by the Union Commerce and Industry's Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP).
 
Undeterred, the state government is wholeheartedly backing the "Momentum Jharkhand" investors summit that is being promoted in a big way on TV by former India captain M.S. Dhoni, and has as its logo a pink elephant. Critics are hoping the projects its brings do not turn into white elephants.
 
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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