“Notwithstanding the improvement in core sector growth, IIP growth is expected to decelerate to around 4.2% in February from the 6.8% reading in the previous month. A lower PMI and easing export growth in the month point towards a moderation of manufacturing growth,” ICRA economist Aditi Nayar said
New Delhi: The country’s industrial output growth in February is expected to fall below 6.8% recorded in January even though there are some signs of pick-up in manufacturing and consumer goods, reports PTI.
“As far as the IIP growth is concerned, it will remain flat in February this year and our projection is about 6.14% for the month. Though, this is little less than the previous month, it is still a good number,” Bank of Baroda chief economist Rupa Rege-Nitsure told PTI.
The IIP for the month of February is scheduled to be released on Thursday.
Growth in factory output growth, as measured by the Index of Industrial Production (IIP), grew 6.8% in January 2012, over the previous month, mainly due to improvement in the manufacturing sector. It was, however, higher at 7.5% in January 2011.
“We have seen stronger activities in some core sectors (in February) like manufacturing and consumer goods in which the growth is likely to improve and touch more or less the same number,” Ms Rege-Nitsure added.
IIP growth has been revised upwards to 2.5% in December, from the provisional estimates of 1.8%.
However, DK Joshi, chief economist, Crisil said, “It is difficult to predict at this moment. However, there could a moderation in growth in some of the sectors.”
Echoing similar views, ICRA economist Aditi Nayar is of the view that the IIP growth could further decelerate to 4.2%.
“Notwithstanding the improvement in core sector growth, IIP growth is expected to decelerate to around 4.2% in February from the initial 6.8% reading in the previous month. A lower PMI (Purchasing Managers Index) and easing export growth in the month point towards a moderation of manufacturing growth,” she said.
According to the data released last month, output of the manufacturing sector, which constitutes over 75% of the index, rose 8.5% in January, compared to 8.1% in the same month last year.
During the April-January period of 2011-12, the IIP growth stood at 4%, as against 8.3% in same period in 2010-11.
The major part of business came from trading in bullion, agri commodities, energy and metals, the data released by commodity market regulator Forward Markets Commission on Wednesday showed
New Delhi: Driven by bullion and agri commodities trading, the turnover of 21 commodity exchanges in the country jumped by about 52% to Rs 181.26 lakh crore in 2011-12, reports PTI.
The turnover of the exchanges stood at Rs119.48 lakh crore in the previous fiscal 2010-11.
The major part of business came from trading in bullion, agri commodities, energy and metals, the data released by commodity market regulator Forward Markets Commission (FMC) on Wednesday showed.
Total turnover in bullion trade skyrocketed by 85% to Rs101.81 lakh crore in the last financial year, from Rs54.93 lakh crore in 2010-11.
The turnover in agri-commodities like chana, guar, mentha, etc, rose by 51% to Rs21.96 lakh crore in 2011-12 against Rs14.56 lakh crore in 2010-11.
While, the turnover from commodity trade in metals rose by 8% to Rs28.96 lakh crore in 2011-12 fiscal from Rs26.87 lakh crore in the year-ago period.
Trade in energy rose by 23% to Rs28.51 lakh crore in FY11-12 compared to Rs23.10 lakh crore in last fiscal.
In bullion, turnover in silver surged by more than two-fold to Rs58.26 lakh crore in 2011-12, from Rs27.93 lakh crore in 2010-11, while the business from gold rose by 61% to Rs43.55 lakh crore in FY11-12, compared to Rs27.01 lakh crore in last fiscal.
Similarly, in agri commodities, the rise in turnover was mainly contributed by chana, guar, soyabean seed, refined soyabean oil and mustard.
The turnover in rapeseed/mustard rose by 92% to Rs2.15 lakh crore in 2011-12, whereas chana (gram) turnover jumped by 143% to Rs3.06 lakh crore in the fiscal.
In refined soyabean oil, the turnover rose by 56% to Rs5.38 lakh crore in the last fiscal, while that of soyabean seed increased by 37% to Rs1.48 lakh crore in FY11-12.
The turnover from guar seed rose by 33% to Rs3.38 lakh crore in 2011-12, from Rs2.54 crore in 2010-11.
For last couple of months, soyabean and some other farm commodities like chana, mustard, guar, etc, have come under the lens of the regulator as their prices have risen sharply in view of demand-supply mismatch.
Earlier this month, FMC had banned commodity exchanges from offering new futures contracts in soyabean to curb price volatility and speculation in the oilseed.
That apart, the commodity market regulator had enhanced the deposit amount that buyers have to keep with exchanges for trading in soyabean, pepper and cardamom by 10% of the value of these commodities.
It has also reduced open position limits—a restriction on the quantity of commodities that can be traded in the futures market—on soyabean, mustard seed, chana and refined soyabean oil contracts to curb excessive price volatility.
At present, there are five national and 16 regional commodity exchanges in the country.
An RTI activist from Pune, Col Suresh Patil (retd) remarked, “Dr Rajendra Prasad donated his land to Vinoba Bhave and here we have Pratibhatai Patil taking away the land for of her own men
Consider this: Eight hundred jawans of the Territorial Army (TA) are presently posted in Pune but there is residential accommodation for only 14. This being a family posting (a bonanza offered after a harsh field station posting), each jawan desires to bring his family, otherwise left behind in his hometown, when he is guarding the nation’s frontiers, often in a challenging geographical terrain. However, due to lack of official accommodation, a jawan is asked by his seniors to refrain from getting his family to Pune. Those jawans who decide to get their families to Pune nevertheless, live in slum-like conditions in one-room dwellings, near the Pune cantonment, with no drinking water facility. In addition, paucity of residential accommodation for hundreds of soldiers and officers in the Indian Armed Forces in Pune is causing great inconvenience to the families.
Now consider this: Pratibha Patil, president of India and the supreme commander of the armed forces is building a palatial home for herself on a whopping 261,000 sq ft of land in Khadki Cantonment in Pune (out of which the bungalow occupies about 4,500 sq ft). The land belongs to the defence. It will now have a fortified home, the construction of which is nearing completion.
The president is eligible for only 2,000 sq ft bungalow in any part of the country if he/she wants the government to hire a home for him/her, after retirement. Otherwise, he/she is entitled to a government-owned Class V bungalow (around 4,500 sq ft) if it is available. He/she is not eligible to build a home on government land. Some former defence personnel from Pune who are campaigning against this illegality are taking strong objections to the fact that Ms Patil is constructing her house on government land, when hundreds of jawans and officers are facing official accommodation crisis.
This revelation under the Right to Information (RTI) Act was procured by Col Suresh Patil (retd) and founder of Justice for Jawans (JFJ), RTI activist Anup Awasthi and Indian Ex-servicemen Movement (IESM) who are campaigning against Ms Patil’s ‘snatching’ away land meant for soldiers and officers.
The RTI application was sent to the president’s office. As per the reply, under the President’s Emoluments and Pension Act, 1951 and rules framed under the President’s Pension Rule, 1962, “where suitable government residence is not available for allotment to a retired president, the size of the residence to be taken on lease to be provided to a retired president shall have a living area not exceeding 2,000 sq ft”.
“A place where government-owned accommodation is allotted to a retired president, the size of the residence is comparable to a residence allotted to a minister in the Union council of ministers and if the highest type of government residence available as a particular place is less in size than a residence allotted to a minister in the Union council of ministers, the highest type of accommodation available at that place shall be allotted to the ex-president. At present, a minister is entitled to a plinth area of the bungalow as 4,498 sq ft”.
The reply under RTI also stated that she is eligible to drinking water and electricity supply, free of cost, throughout her life.
States commander Ravindra Pathak, member of the IESM and who invoked the RTI, “taking away more than 2.5 lakh sq ft of defence land is sheer looting by Ms Patil. We are sending a letter to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court to take up the case suo moto. We have no money to pay for lawyers’ expenses.”
Col Suresh Patil (retd) elaborates, “Two defence bungalows have been pulled down to make way for Ms Patil’s bungalow and the vast expanse of land, over 2 lakh sq ft has been fortified for her. We are saying that let her keep the 2,000 sq ft she is entitled to and give away the remaining land for constructing official accommodation for soldiers and officers. Otherwise, there are numerous bungalows in the three cantonments of Pune and she could have been given accommodation in one of these.”
No other president has made such claims for personal gains, alleges Col Patil. He adds says, “Dr Rajendra Prasad donated his land to Vinoba Bhave and here we have Pratibhatai Patil taking away the land for of her own men—after all she is the supreme commander of the armed forces.”
RTI in this case provided information but who’s going to tie the proverbial bell round the cat? Hence, we need a strong anti-corruption law.
(Vinita Deshmukh is consulting editor of Moneylife. She is also an RTI activist and convener of the Pune Metro Jagruti Abhiyaan. She is the recipient of prestigious awards like the Statesman Award for Rural Reporting which she won twice in 1998 and 2005 and the Chameli Devi Jain award for outstanding media person for her investigation series on Dow Chemicals. She co-authored the book “To The Last Bullet - The Inspiring Story of A Braveheart - Ashok Kamte” with Vinita Kamte. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)
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