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US camera pioneer Kodak files for bankruptcy

The company, which dates back more than a hundred years, was a pioneer in popularising photography. But it has been struggling to keep pace with the digital age and years of poor performance had already forced it to lay off 47,000 employees and close 13 manufacturing plants since 2003

New York: US camera pioneer Eastman Kodak, which brought photography to the masses over a century ago, filed for bankruptcy early today, reports PTI.

“After considering the advantages of Chapter 11 at this time, the board of directors and the entire senior management team unanimously believe that this is a necessary step and the right thing to do for the future of Kodak,” CEO Antonio Perez said in a statement, referring to US bankruptcy proceedings.

“Our goal is to maximise value for stakeholders, including our employees, retirees, creditors, and pension trustees. We are also committed to working with our valued customers,” he added.

The company, which dates back more than a hundred years, was a pioneer in popularising photography.

But it has been struggling to keep pace with the digital age and years of poor performance had already forced it to lay off 47,000 employees and close 13 manufacturing plants since 2003.

“Now we must complete the transformation by further addressing our cost structure and effectively monetising non-core IP assets,” Mr Perez said.

“We look forward to working with our stakeholders to emerge a lean, world-class, digital imaging and materials science company.”

In its heyday Kodak shares topped $80 in 1996—just at the outset of the digital photo revolution that eventually replaced the need for consumers to buy Kodak film, once a virtual monopoly in the US market.

The bankruptcy filing places the jobs of Kodak’s 19,000 remaining employees in question. At its height in the 1980s, it had 145,000 workers.

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CWG scam: HC grants bail to Kalmadi, Verma

While granting them bail, justice Mukta Gupta directed them to furnish before the trial court a bail bond of Rs5 lakh each and two sureties of the like amount. Justice Gupta said, “There is no allegation that the petitioners are likely to flee from justice and will not be available for the trial”

New Delhi: After remaining behind bars for nearly nine months, former Commonwealth Games (CWG) Organising Committee (OC) chairman Suresh Kalmadi was on Thursday granted bail by the Delhi High Court in a 2010 Games-related graft case, reports PTI.

The court also granted bail to OC former director general and co-accused V K Verma.

While granting them bail, justice Mukta Gupta directed them to furnish before the trial court a bail bond of Rs5 lakh each and two sureties of the like amount.

Justice Gupta said, “There is no allegation that the petitioners are likely to flee from justice and will not be available for the trial.”

The court directed them not to leave the country without prior permission of the trial court.

Mr Kalmadi was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation CBI on 25 April 2011 while Mr Verma was arrested on 23 February 2011 in the Timing, Scoring and Result (TSR) system scam.

While allowing their plea for bail which cited Supreme Court’s judgement in 2G spectrum case wherein it was held that “bail is rule and jail is exception”, justice Gupta said, “There is no allegation of money trail to the petitioners.

There is also no evidence that the petitioner is threatening witnesses or interfering with evidence during investigation or trial.”

Mr Kalmadi had moved the high court in January, seeking bail citing the Supreme Court’s judgement in the second generation (2G) spectrum case and said it has been held that “bail is rule and jail is exception”.

Mr Kalmadi said only a charge-sheet has been filed against him and there was remote possibility of commencement of the trial in the near future.

The CBI had, however, opposed the bail pleas of Mr Kalmadi and Mr Verma and referred to the trial court’s 4th January order submitting that it has been decided that the case would be heard on a day-to-day basis soon after scrutiny of documents.

It had also said that there was nothing new in the “bail-is-rule-and-jail-an-exception” remark of the apex court while granting bail in the 2G case.

Mr Kalmadi, MR Verma and nine others have been accused of allegedly awarding a contract to a Swiss firm to install a TSR system for the Games at an exorbitant rate, causing a loss of over Rs90 crore to the state exchequer.

The CBI had in its charge-sheet filed in May 2011 described Mr Kalmadi as main accused in the case.

Besides Mr Kalmadi and MR Verma, others who are accused in the TSR scam include OC former secretary general Lalit Bhanot, OC director general (procurement) Surjit Lal, joint director general (sports) ASV Prasad, treasurer M Jayachandran, managing director AK Reddy of Hyderabad-based AKR Constructions and promoters AK Madan and PD Arya of a Faridabad-based firm Gem International.

Two companies AKR Constructions and Swiss Timing are also accused in the case.

The Special CBI court had on 23 May 2011 given a go-ahead for their prosecution under various provisions of the IPC dealing with criminal conspiracy, forging documents and using fake documents as genuine and the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The contract was illegally awarded to Swiss Timing which further sub-contracted it to Gem International. Gem International then sub-let the TSR work to AKR Constructions.

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