Customers are able to carry out basic banking transactions through mobile phones and even deposit and withdraw cash at appointed Vodafone m-paisa outlets
Banking major HDFC Bank is looking at completing within 15 months the nation-wide roll-out of the MobileBank account 'm-paisa' facility that it launched recently with Vodafone. The m-paisa was inaugurated last month in Rajasthan. "After Rajasthan, we are looking at Orissa and Bihar for roll out of the m-paisa. In another 15 months, we should complete the national roll-out," HDFC managing director Aditya Puri told PTI.
Under the m-paisa arrangement, customers are able to carry out basic banking transactions through mobile phones and even deposit and withdraw cash at appointed Vodafone m-paisa outlets, without having to go to bank branches. "We will also upgrade the m-paisa scheme to enable EMI repayment, merchant payment, credit disbursement and pre-paid airtime soon," Puri said.
The "first-of-its-kind" national initiative for financial inclusion through mobile banking was unveiled in the presence of the Reserve Bank deputy governor K C Chakrabarty in Chomu, near Jaipur, in late November. In Rajasthan, which is the first state where the partnership has been implemented, over 2,200 retailers across 320 villages and 54 towns are already operational in opening HDFC Bank MobileBank Accounts with Vodafone m-paisa. The transactions include cash deposit, cash withdrawal, money transfer and balance enquiry.
"Our aim is to promote viable financing which will be viable for the individual, viable for the bank and viable for the society," Puri said.
Stating that the ministry had received the views of the law ministry, among others, on the matter, telecom secretary R Chandrashekhar said, “The broad view that is emerging is that it is impermissible”
New Delhi: The Telecom ministry today said it will soon take action against service providers that have entered into roaming agreements for third generation (3G) services, as the pacts violate licence terms and conditions, reports PTI.
Stating that the ministry had received the views of the law ministry, among others, on the matter, telecom secretary R Chandrashekhar said, “The broad view that is emerging is that it is impermissible.”
The ministry will soon take action, he added, but declined to give further details.
He was speaking to reporters on the sidelines of an Assocham event here.
The issue pertains to the pact between major service providers, including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Essar and Idea Cellular, for providing a 3G roaming network on a pan-India basis.
Other service providers, like Tata Teleservices and Aircel, had also entered into similar agreements to offer services in six circles.
The Department of Telecom (DoT) had sought a legal opinion on this matter and the law ministry had also supported the DoT’s view.
In an internal note, the DoT had said the roaming agreement among telecom companies for 3G services would lead to a significant loss of revenue for the government.
There may also be an impact on revenues from spectrum usage charges collected from operators, the note added.
The chiefs of three leading telecom firms—Bharti, Idea and Vodafone—had then sought prime minister Manmohan Singh’s intervention in the dispute over the 3G roaming pact, failing which they said they would surrender spectrum.
Mr Singh, on his part, had assured the industry that the government will look into their concerns and formulate forward-looking policies to sustain growth in the sector.
Retail giant, which wanted to enter the retail space in India, is investigating possible bribe to foreign officials
Global giant Walmart, which has been lobbying for entering organised retail in India, has begun an internal investigation about executives possibly having bribed foreign officials. In a disclosure filed before the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Walmart has said that it is conducting an ‘internal review’ on the allegations of violation(s) of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
“During fiscal 2012, the company began conducting a voluntary internal review of its policies, procedures and internal controls pertaining to its global anti-corruption compliance program. As a result of information obtained during that review and from other sources, the company has begun an internal investigation into whether certain matters, including permitting, licensing and inspections, were in compliance with the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The company has engaged outside counsel and other advisors to assist in the review of these matters and has implemented, and is continuing to implement, appropriate remedial measures,” said Walmart in its Form 10-Q filed on 8 December 2011. However, the company did not give out any other details.
Despite the possibility of a serious violation, Walmart does not ‘believe’ that these matters will have a material adverse effect on its business, financial condition, results of operations or cash flows. “We cannot reasonably estimate the potential liability, if any, related to these matters,” said the company in the disclosure.
Walmart says it has engaged external counsellors and lawyers in this review and it is continuing to implement remedial measures.
In 2011, Walmart has two lawsuits pending—one against gender harassment and another on wage issues. The company has also been pulled up by authorities in USA and Brazil for environmental violations. California authorities initiated an investigation of whether third party contractors hired by the company were engaged in disposal of construction materials at a local landfill. In Brazil, two municipalities are investigating alleged local soil contamination due oil leakage from some stores. Walmart doesn’t believe either of these cases will adversely impact its finances.
Walmart’s revenues last year amounted to $440 billion. It has about 2,000,000 employees.