The pension regulatory authority was set up in 2003, but legislation laying down its structure and responsibilities has not been instituted till now for various reasons
New Delhi: Taking forward financial sector reforms, the government on Thursday introduced the long-pending Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority Bill in the Lok Sabha to give statutory status to the interim pension regulator and promote old age income security.
The Bill, which was introduced by finance minister Pranab Mukherjee, provides for establishing a statutory regulatory body to be called the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) that will undertake promotional, developmental and regulatory functions with respect to pension funds, reports PTI.
The principal opposition Bharatiya Janata Party supported the proposal, even as the Left parties pressed for a division at the introduction stage. The Bill was introduced after a division of votes, as 115 members backed the proposed legislation, 43 opposed it and one member abstained from voting. As many as 159 members were present in the 543 member House.
According to the statement of objects and reasons, foreign investment policy for pension sector intermediaries, including pension funds and the central record-keeping agency, would be determined and notified outside the proposed legislation under the Foreign Exchange Management Act.
The Bill also contains provisions for empowering the PFRDA to regulate the National Pension System (NPS), as amended from time to time. Moreover, it authorises the PFRDA to levy fees for services rendered by it, towards meeting its expenditure. The pension fund regulator can also impose penalties for any violation of the provisions of the legislation, rules, regulations, etc, once the Bill is passed.
The Bill also provides for the establishment of the PFRDA consisting of a chairperson, three whole-time members and three part-time members.
"The New Pension System, as provided in the PFRDA Bill, 2005, would be renamed as the National Pension System," the Bill says.
The government had constituted an interim pension sector regulator in 2003. The PFRDA Bill was earlier introduced in the Lok Sabha in 2005, which was then referred to the Standing Committee.
The government proposed amendments in 2009 to give effect to certain recommendations of the Committee, but amendments could not be moved and the PFRDA Bill, 2005, could not be considered and passed, and the same lapsed due to the dissolution of the 14th Lok Sabha.
Though the PFRDA does not have statutory powers at present, it is regulating the New Pension System. The government had launched the New Pension System for central government employees entering service from 1 January 2004. Later it was extended to all citizens from 1 May 2009.
The new commercial is Cadbury’s attempt to slip in to the dessert plate. The creative is quite boring and lifeless, but it still is a brave marketing move to try and change a very deeply entrenched Indian habit
If there's one brand we can all learn from, in terms of how to expand the market, it's Cadbury Dairy Milk. They are forever looking to find new occasions for chocolate consumption, even if that means trespassing age-old, well-entrenched consumer habits.
I recall only till about two decades ago, Cadbury Dairy Milk was targeted purely at children. The commercials at the time used to always feature parents gifting the chocolate to their kids. Since then, the Cadbury guys have consistently (and successfully) broken the age barrier, and the brand is now pitched at even the geriatrics. And in terms of consumption occasions, they have been giving the traditional mithai a serious run for its money (remember 'Pappu pass ho gayaa'?).
The latest attempt is to make Cadbury Dairy Milk a substitute for dessert. To satisfy the craving for a post-dinner sweet, the space which, in typical Indian households, is usually occupied by ice creams, custards, gulab jamuns, jalebis, kheer, etc. This is a brave marketing move, but a commendable one nonetheless. Agreed, this will be a long haul effort as it may take a long time for consumers to change their habits, but it's worth a try for sure. Kuchh meetha post dinner is a huge market.
However, and quite surprisingly I might add, the commercial is very laid back and un-engaging. Considering that one would expect the ad to be really hot, given the challenging marketing assignment on hand. The commercial features a family at a dinner table. A little girl fusses over her food. When the grand dad wants to know what sweet dish is lined up for the evening, someone mentions Cadbury. The little girl tries to quickly eat her choc bar, so that it becomes jhootha, and therefore others won't have it. But they do. From a new plate that arrives with Cadbury Dairy Milk pieces displayed like sweetmeats. The family shares a laugh as the voice-over says: 'Khaane ke baad meethe mein kuchh meetha ho jaaye.'
Yes, the commercial is quite boring and lifeless. Still, it's a 'sweet' marketing strategy, and the creative renditions can change and improve with time. A good case study material for marketing schools to keep a sharp eye on, if Cadbury Dairy Milk can actually achieve some degree of success in smashing a very deeply entrenched Indian habit.
The Janata Party leader, who had sought a probe into scam, had also raised concern about the possible threat to national security arising out of allocation of spectrum to Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless, which had sold off their major shares to two foreign firms Etisalat DB and Telenor, respectively
New Delhi: A Delhi court today transferred the private complaint of Janata Party chief Subramanian Swamy in the second generation (2G) spectrum allocation case to the special court constituted by the Supreme Court to deal with all cases related to the scam, reports PTI.
District judge Pratibha Rani asked Mr Swamy to appear before Special CBI judge OP Saini, who is dealing with all the cases related to the 2G spectrum allocation.
Swamy appeared before the court and requested the district judge to transfer his case to the special court.
The Janata Party leader, who had sought a probe into scam, had also raised concern about the possible threat to national security arising out of allocation of spectrum to companies which had sold off their major shares to foreign firms.
Mr Swamy had also sought the court's direction to appoint him as a public prosecutor to help the agency probe the case.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had earlier said it was investigating the angle of possible threat to internal security as per the concerns raised by Mr Swamy.
The agency had told the court that it had been probing the 2G scam within the confines of the first information report registered by it.
Mr Swamy, in his petition filed before the court, had said Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless, which were allotted licences, had sold their major shares to two foreign firms Etisalat DB and Telenor, which is "a major threat" to national security.
"The first two licencees, Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless, soon after the allocation of spectrum to them sold their controlling shares respectively to Etisalat DB and Telenor. The national security risks from these companies are highlighted by the Union home ministry as their connections go right into Pakistan," he had said.
Mr Swamy had earlier sought the court's direction to the CBI to ask the Union home ministry, Research and Analysis Wing and other intelligence agencies to find out the bearings of the 2G scam on national security.