Kalmadi remanded to CBI custody for eight days

The CBI had yesterday arrested Mr Kalmadi, Mr Lal and Mr Prasad for allegedly awarding illegal contracts to a Swiss firm for Timing-Scoring-Result (TSR) system for the Games causing a loss of Rs95 crore to the exchequer

New Delhi: Sacked Commonwealth Games (CWG) Organising Committee (OC) chief Suresh Kalmadi, arrested on charges of cheating, conspiracy and corruption in connection with awarding some Games contracts, was today remanded to Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) custody for eight days by a Delhi Court for custodial interrogation, reports PTI.

The other two arrested OC officials Surjeet Lal, deputy director general (procurement), and A S V Prasad, joint director general (sport), were also remanded to CBI custody till 4th May by Special CBI judge Talwant Singh.

The CBI had yesterday arrested Mr Kalmadi, Mr Lal and Mr Prasad for allegedly awarding illegal contracts to a Swiss firm for Timing-Scoring-Result (TSR) system for the Games causing a loss of Rs95 crore to the exchequer.

The agency had sought 14 days' custody of 66-year-old Mr Kalmadi and his associates contending that they have to be interrogated to unearth the money trail in the scam.

However, the judge granted eight days to the CBI to question Mr Kalmadi and the two other accused.

The agency had submitted that Mr Kalmadi and his associates were not cooperating with the investigators and have been "evasive" in responding to the questions.

"The behaviour of the accused so far has remained evasive and non-cooperative and they are not revealing the true facts and circumstances of the criminal conspiracy leading to the award of TSR system contract to Swiss Timing in a wrongful manner," the CBI alleged.

"Mr Kalmadi as chairman of the Organising Committee of CWG, Mr Prasad as joint director general (sport) and Mr Lal as deputy director general (procurement) during the relevant period were among the main functionaries and key personnel in OC.

"They were deeply involved and instrumental in allotment of TSR contract to Swiss Timing in a pre-planned and premeditated manner at exorbitant rates, thus causing wrongful loss to the government," the agency claimed.

Mr Kalmadi, a Congress MP from Pune, and the two other officials have been booked under section 120B (conspiracy) read with Section 420 (cheating) IPC and other relevant sections of Prevention of Corruption Act.

Mr Kalmadi's arrest has come weeks after his close aide and OC secretary general Lalit Bhanot and director general VK Verma were taken into custody in the same case.

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Nifty still struggling to cross 5,900: Tuesday Closing Report

The Nifty dipped below 5,800 as suggested yesterday, but bounced back. If it doesn't cross 5,900 soon, a decline is on the cards

The market was volatile ahead of the expiry of the April futures and options contract and an expected interest rate hike by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) at its monetary policy meeting next week. Earnings performance influenced stocks of companies that have announced their results. The Nifty is still stuck around the 5,800 level, as seen in the last couple of days. A decline is inevitable if it doesn't cross 5,900 soon.

The local market opened flat, dampened by the Asian markets that were in the red on lacklustre earnings. The Sensex added 12 points to trade at 19,596 and the Nifty was a mere two points higher at 5,877. Selling in IT, metals, auto and consumer durables stocks dragged the indices further southwards till around 10.20 am. Thereafter the market was range-bound for nearly two hours and an institutional sell-off pushed the indices to the day's lows. At the intra-day low, the Sensex shaved off 277 points to 19,307 and the Nifty retraced 83 points to 5,792.

A positive opening in key European markets and US futures trading in the green boosted the domestic indices in late trade, taking them into positive terrain and to the day's high. The Sensex touched 19,626, up 42 points at its intra-day high, and the Nifty was at 5,893, up 18 points. But the gains were short-lived as the markets soon turned negative and ended the day in the red for the second day in a row. The Sensex lost closed at 19,545, down 39 points, and the Nifty finished at 5,868, down six points from the previous close. The advance-decline ratio on the National Stock Exchange was 574:809.

Among the broader markets, the BSE Mid-cap index and the BSE Small-cap index shed 0.03% each. BSE Healthcare (up 0.42%), BSE Fast Moving Consumer Goods (up 0.08%) and BSE TECk (up 0.06%) were the top sectoral gainers. BSE Consumer Durables (down 0.80%), BSE Oil & Gas (down 0.35%) and BSE Realty (down 0.31%) were the major losers.

Bharti Airtel (up 1.65%), Hindalco Industries (up 1.55%) and Tata Motors (up 1.50%) were the top performing Sensex stocks. On the other hand, Hindustan Unilever (down 1.99%), Maruti Suzuki (down 1.91%) and Sterlite Industries (down 1.56%) settled at the bottom of the index.

India's headline inflation is likely to remain high this year too, registering an average of 8.6% in 2011-12, as manufacturers are likely to pass on input costs to consumers, global banking giant Nomura said today.

The banking and asset management behemoth said in its 'Asia Economic Alert' report that it expects the RBI to hike the short-term lending (repo) rate by 100 basis points in 2011, with the purpose of curbing inflationary pressure.

Markets in Asia settled mostly lower on weak earnings reports from across the region. The recent earthquake in Japan has had an effect on Nintendo and Nidec, while auto majors were hurt with the S&P cutting its outlook on the sector on Monday. Rumours about rate-tightening measures for top five banks in China weighed on Chinese investors.

The Shanghai Composite declined 0.87%, the Hang Seng fell by 0.54%, the Jakarta Composite was down 0.36%, the Nikkei 225 tanked 1.17%, the Straits Times fell by 0.50%, the Seoul Composite decreased 0.44% and the Taiwan Weighted shed 0.03%. Bucking the trend, the KLSE Composite added 0.22%.

Back home, foreign institutional investors were net sellers of stocks worth Rs377.59 crore on Monday, whereas domestic institutional investors were net buyers of equities worth Rs236.62 crore.

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UK Sinha elected chairman, Asia- Pacific Regional Committee, IOSCO

UK Sinha, chairman, SEBI has been elected chairman of the Asia-Pacific Regional Committee (APRC) of the International Organisation of Securities Commissions, at the 36th Annual Conference of IOSCO held at Cape Town, South Africa from 17th April to 21 April 2011

UK Sinha, chairman, SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India) has been elected chairman of the Asia-Pacific Regional Committee (APRC) of the International Organisation of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), at the 36th Annual Conference of IOSCO held at Cape Town, South Africa from 17th April to 21 April 2011.   

Prior to Mr Sinha, Mr Bhave was the Chairman of the APRC from June 2009 till he demitted his office as chairman of SEBI.

The members of the Asia-Pacific Regional Committee are Australia, Bangladesh, Brunei, People's Republic of China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Kyrgyz Republic, Malaysia, Republic of Maldives, Mongolia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Chinese Taipei, Thailand and Vietnam.

IOSCO is recognised as the international standard setter for securities markets. The Organization's wide membership regulates more than 90% of the world's securities markets and IOSCO is the world's most important international cooperative forum for securities regulatory agencies. IOSCO members regulate more than one hundred jurisdictions.

SEBI has been an active member of the IOSCO and is one of the earliest signatories to the Multilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MMoU) of IOSCO.

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