HDFC Mutual Fund unveils 13 months fixed maturity plan

HDFC Mutual Fund new issue closes on 17th July

HDFC Mutual Fund has launched HDFC FMP 13M August 2011 (1), a close-ended income scheme.

The investment objective of the scheme is to generate income through investments in debt/money market instruments and government securities maturing on or before the maturity date of the respective plan(s). The tenure of the scheme is 13 months.

The new issue closes on 17th July. The minimum investment amount is Rs5,000.

Crisil Short Term Bond Fund Index is the benchmark index. Bharat Pareek and Miten Lathia (for overseas investments) are the fund managers.


Birla Sun Life MF floats 370 days fixed term plan

Birla Sun Life MF new issue closes on 16th July

Birla Sun Life Mutual Fund has launched Birla Sun Life Fixed Term Plan-Series DK, a close-ended income scheme.

The investment objective of the scheme is to generate income by investing in a portfolio of fixed income securities maturing on or before the duration of the scheme.. The tenure of the scheme is 370 days.

The new issue closes on 16th July. The minimum investment amount is Rs5,000.

CRISIL Short Term Bond Fund Index is the benchmark index. Kaustubh Gupta is the fund manager.


Ammonium nitrate stockpile in Vishakhapatnam raises serious questions on naval security

Former power secretary has repeatedly sent letters to the home minister and senior bureaucrats for monitoring the hazardous chemical, but has not received any response so far 

The mysterious case of MV Rak's long wait and the subsequent sinking near Juhu in Mumbai has raised some serious questions about the nation's naval security. The authorities concerned appear clueless about the ship's stay and the managing of the subsequent oil-spill. In such a situation, storage of large quantities of ammonium nitrate at Vishakhapatnam only raises the levels of anxiety.

Former power and finance secretary, EAS Sarma, has written to the home minister, asking for tightened surveillance on the substance. While he has sent many letters to several Union ministers and bureaucrats, there has been no response. "I had written about one specific case of ammonium nitrate storage facility being set up near Visakhapatnam, no attempt had been made by any one in the government to stop it," said Mr Sarma in his letter.

Incidentally, the department of industrial policy and promotion had declared ammonium nitrate to be an 'explosive' after the recent Mumbai blasts. However, the Andhra Pradesh Coastal Zone Management Authority (APCZMA) appears unaware of this fact. With container traffic increasing day-by-day at Indian ports, storage of such huge amounts of the chemical appears risky. "While the navy is very alert, many of these containers go unchecked. Having a system of screening will be very helpful," said Mr Sarma.

Vishakhapatnam has six companies that act as intermediaries in the import and inland distribution of ammonium nitrate, which is used as a fertiliser. There is little knowledge about where the truckloads are delivered. In May 2010, a truck was hijacked by Maoists in the Bastar region of Chhattisgarh, while on its way from Vishakhapatnam to Raipur.

Mr Sarma cited several techniques and norms used globally for monitoring movement of this substance which is often used for making explosive devices by terrorists. In Vishakhapatnam, the most (in)famous storage facility is that of Sravan Shipping, which houses some 20,000 tonnes. There are six such godowns in the port city, and the amount stored in these totals to more than 100,000 tonnes.

Sravan Shipping's warehouse is located near highly hazardous establishments like the Hindustan Petroleum refinery, Hindustan Zinc and major fertiliser units. "It is very close to the airport and public settlements are just a stone's throw away," said Mr Sarma. In case of an explosion, severe damage can be caused in that area.

At the time of setting up of this facility in 2007, there was a furore. After the environment assessment report was presented before the MoEF (ministry of environment and forests), the matter went for public hearing, which saw many local residents protesting storage of this hazardous substance, backed by some political parties as well. "But like in many other cases, public objection was overlooked and the government cleared the project, which is again illegally built on the CRZ (costal regulation zone) area," said Mr Sarma.

"Vishakhapatnam is a busy and an important area," he added, "it is a major Coromandel port, it houses the headquarters of the Eastern Naval Command, is an ecologically sensitive zone and is an industrial and commercial hub. Several incidents—from the 26/11 massacre to the sinking of MV Rak—have shown us how vulnerable our coastlines are. In such a situation, storage of explosive substances like ammonium nitrate is a big risk, especially when there are no checks on it."



P R Kumar

6 years ago

Environmentalists and University Professors has to take proactive roles as to safe guard the Civilians

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