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Defence minister AK Antony said all wings of the government including the ministry, IAF and SPG had “followed all the procedures. In spite of that one thing is clear that something happened somewhere”
Bracing to face opposition heat over the chopper scam in Parliament, defence minister AK Antony on Tuesday said government has “nothing to hide” and is prepared for a discussion even as he played down reports of his resignation.
“I will do my duty. I am now getting ready for the Parliament session. We will explain everything to Parliament. We have nothing to hide. Our hands are very clean,” Mr Antony told reporters on being asked whether he would resign.
Reacting to BJP’s allegations that the defence ministry was ‘sleeping’ over the reports of corruption in the Rs3,600 crore deal for 12 VVIP choppers, he said, “I cannot wake up anybody who is sleeping”. The defence ministry had started taking action on the issue from day one when first media reports in this regard came in, Mr Antony said.
Addressing the media at a BrahMos Aerospace function, he said there were no differences between different ministries on the process to scrap the deal and the whole government was working together. Mr Antony said he was “sad and upset” over the controversy which had erupted despite all precautions having been taken. “Now we are preparing to face Parliament.”
The minister was asked if he was sad over the whole episode and was resigning on the issue taking a high moral ground. Mr Antony said he was upset over the alleged scam as despite blacklisting six firms in one scam for which he was accused of slowing down modernisation, such an incident has happened as “there was no end to human greed and still greedy people were working around the world.”
Mr Antony said in the procurement process for the AgustaWestland choppers, all wings of the government including the ministry, IAF and SPG had “followed all the procedures. In spite of that one thing is clear that something happened somewhere.” “It is the decision of the government that we must get to the root of the controversy to find out the truth and must find out the culprits. And whosoever is responsible, must be brought to justice at the earliest and then ensure maximum punishment. It is the resolve of the entire government,” he said.
Asked about the reason for the government to take a series of actions in the last one week after it waited for one year for details from Italy and the UK, the defence minister said, “When the report came that the CEO of the company (Finmeccanica) was arrested, we decided to refer the matter to the CBI.”
Last Tuesday, Finmeccanica CEO Giueseppe Orsi and AgustaWestland CEO Bruno Spagnolini were arrested by Italian investigators in connection with the alleged scam in which Rs362 crore have been allegedly paid as kickbacks.
The minister said he has taken a series of actions including referring the matter to the CBI, suspending the deal and payments for it after the reports of the arrest came in.
The minister said efforts were on to get reports from the Italian courts conducting the inquiry into the alleged chopper scam and the Italian government.
Under the scheme, brokers and other market intermediaries will be given incentives for a specified period of time to bring in liquidity and generate investor interest in those securities which have limited trading activity
MCX Stock Exchange (MCX-SX) on Tuesday said it will launch incentive schemes for brokers and intermediaries to enhance liquidity in illiquid securities in the equity and derivatives segments from March 2013.
“MCX-SX will introduce liquidity enhancement scheme (LES) in equity and equity derivatives segments with effect from 6 March, 2013,” the stock exchange said in a statement.
This is the first national exchange in the country to offer incentives for liquidity enhancement in the equity cash market, it added.
Under the scheme, brokers and other market intermediaries will be given incentives for a specified period of time to bring in liquidity and generate investor interest in those securities which have limited trading activity.
There are more than 2,000 illiquid stocks on leading exchanges. The exchange said the scheme would benefit all participants across various segments of the market.
MCX-SX said the market maker performing up to 90% of its obligation during the month in 25 securities would be entitled to receive an additional incentive of Rs21 lakh per month. In case of 40 securities, the member would be entitled to receive an additional incentive of Rs50 lakh per month.
“All passive orders will entitle the member/investor to receive about 50% of the transaction cost received by the exchange from the active order,” it added.
The schemes would offer incentives for contributing to liquidity in all equity and equity derivative instruments at MCX-SX with a special focus on Futures contracts of 50 securities as notified by the exchange.
“Market makers will be obligated to contribute to genuine participation and will be incentivised at a higher rate compared to other participants. Payments to members would be made on a fortnightly basis,” MCX-SX said.
Additionally, incentives would be provided for retail clients, dealers and proprietary traders to create a liquid order book based on genuine end users' participation. These incentives are available for a period of four months, from March to June.
MCX-SX said all retail investors/clients would be entitled to Rs100 per day for trading in equity cash and equity derivatives, while top 10 registered dealers from each region (North, South, East and West) would receive a monthly incentive of Rs1 lakh, with the best performer receiving an additional Rs1 lakh in each region.
Last week, MCX-SX, the third full-fledged equity bourse after BSE and NSE, had begun trading in equities and equity derivatives.
Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) earlier this month had allowed stock exchanges to introduce incentive schemes for brokers and intermediaries to enhance liquidity in illiquid securities in the equity cash segment.