Lok Sabha approves changes in Debt Recovery Bill amid walkout

The Bill seeks to convert any part of debt into shares of defaulting company by the asset reconstruction Company

New Delhi: The Lok Sabha on Monday approved an amendment bill to make easier recovery of bad loans by banks amid walkout by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Left and some other parties after the government rejected their demand for referring it to the Standing Committee, reports PTI.
The Enforcement of Security Interest and Recovery of Debts Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2011, which was approved by voice vote in the Lower House, seeks to convert any part of debt into shares of defaulting company by the asset reconstruction Company (ARC).
The Bill was introduced in Lok Sabha in December 2011.
While the opposition demanded that the bill be referred to the Standing Committee for scrutiny, Finance Minister P Chidambaram said when the bill was introduced last year the Speaker decided against referring it to the Parliamentary committee.
Referring it to the committee now would delay the process further, he said, adding the then minister wanted it to be passed without delay as amendments were of technical nature.
"The bill was introduced in 2011 and should not be referred (to Standing Committee) now after 12 months...It would defeat the very purpose the bill. In the interest of banking sector, it is necessary to pass the bill in 2012," he said, adding the move would quicken the process of loan recovery.
On the issue of rising non-performing assets (NPAs) of banks, Chidambaram said the banking sector is well regulated and the gross NPA, which is around 3.5% of total loans, was not high and the situation would improve with economic recovery. 
Chidambaram said, "Because of stress in economy, several sectors are not doing well. So gross NPAs has risen. Efforts are to ensure that these sectors come out of difficulty. We must do some handholding to them to bring them out of stress."
Dismissing concerns of members that the bill was against farmers and small borrowers, he said the Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT) law deals with only those persons who had borrowed in excess of Rs10 lakh.
He said that in order to promote financial inclusion, the banks are opening branches at the rate of 20 per day.
Chidambaram said RBI lays down guidelines for ARCs and 64,000 cases are pending before the DRT and that is why it was necessary to limit the number of adjournments to six.
Ideally, he said, these cases should be disposed of in one or two hearings as these are well documented.
Responding to allegations of members that banks refrain from taking actions against large corporates like Kingfisher, Chidambaram said no favour is being shown to anyone and law is taking its own course.
He said tax authorities have taken severe action in attaching property and banks have not given any fresh loan to them.
On concerns of allowing 49% FDI in ARCs, Chidambaram said permission was given by RBI in 2005 for foreign investment as domestic companies did not have any experience in setting up this business.


SEBI allows 12 more alternative investment funds

Since October, 12 AIFs like India Realty Fund, Dar Mentorcap Film Fund, Capaleph Indian Millennium Small & Medium Enterprises Fund and Capaleph Indian Millennium PE Fund have registered with SEBI

Mumbai: Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has allowed 12 entities to set up alternative investment funds (AIFs), a newly created class of pooled-in investment vehicles for real estate, private equity and hedge funds, in the last two months, reports PTI.


The 12 AIFs that have been registered with SEBI since 10th October included India Realty Fund, Dar Mentorcap Film Fund, Capaleph Indian Millennium Small & Medium Enterprises Fund and Capaleph Indian Millennium Private Equity Fund.


SEBI had already allowed nine AIFs to set up shops in the country. As on August 31, 2012, a total of 20 applications were pending with SEBI for registration as AIFs.


The regulator had notified in May this year the guidelines for a new class of market intermediaries named AIFs, which are basically funds established or incorporated in India for the purpose of pooling in of capital from Indian and foreign investors for investing as per a pre-decided policy.


SEBI in August decided that the promoters of listed companies can offload 10% of equity to AIFs such as such as SME Funds, Infrastructure Funds, PE funds and Venture Capital Funds registered with the market regulator to attain minimum 25% public holding.


Under SEBI guidelines, AIFs can operate broadly in three categories. The SEBI rules apply to all AIFs, including those operating as private equity funds, real estate funds and hedge funds, among others.


The Category-I AIFs are those funds that get incentives from the government, SEBI or other regulators and include Social Venture Funds, Infrastructure Funds, Venture Capital Funds and SME Funds.


The Category-III AIFs are those trading with a view to make short-term returns and include hedge funds, among others.


The Category-II AIFs can invest anywhere in any combination but are prohibited from raising debt, except for meeting their day-to-day operational requirements. These AIFs include PE funds, debt funds or fund of funds, as also all others falling outside the ambit of two other categories.


Among other registered AIFs in the last two months are-- Edelweiss Stressed & Troubled Assets Revival Fund Trust, IIFL Private Equity Fund, IIFL Opportunities Fund, IIFL Venture Fund, Quant First Alternate Investment Trust, Fulcrum Venture India Trust, Kedaara Capital and Arcus Opportunities Fund.


Indian science needs a paradigm shift

People can be taken for a ride easily in the name of science. Anything can be sold if it is labelled as scientific. The idea is to make the erstwhile colonies remain subservient to the western thinking. Will our leaders bring in the change or would they still prefer the status quo which is quite lucrative business for them too?

“Fight for what you believe in, for if you don’t you will be forever fighting against yourself”—
Keisha Keenleyside

Indian science, including medical science, needs a complete paradigm shift. We have been deluded by the colonial science for too long to realise that we are being taken for a ride. The king of sciences, western physics, is now coming closer to Indian Sankya wisdom. The latest finding that matter and energy are but the two faces of the same coin in quantum physics, is nothing but the ancient concept of advaita. Unfortunately, even our own people mistake advaita as just a religious thought.  Hans Peter Durr's adualtiy is nothing but the advaita concept of our ancient wisdom.

Western science-based technology might appear to have made our life easier with communication, travel, and in many other areas. Therefore life superficially looks much more comfortable now. What we miss out are the side-effects of all those technological advances. Many of them make life miserable at a later date. Cell phone is an example. Already there is an epidemic of acoustic neurinoma, a tumour of the eighth nerve. People have lost the exercise habit thanks to many of the gadgets that have makes life monotonous and boring in addition to people becoming couch potatoes. Sitting jobs like IT sweat shops have led to increased heart diseases as sitting in one place for prolonged periods of time makes the heart function less and get prone to many ailments. Personal social contacts have become rarer since the advent of communication facilities like telephones, SMSs, and many other facilities leading to depression and many other social illnesses. Healthy large families of the past have all but disappeared to the detriment of the future generation's well-being.

Pesticides and fertilisers have ruined human health. A recent study of cord blood of a new-born in the US showed more than two hundred such chemicals. The earth has lost its normal habitat of earthworms and many other species which were making the earth fertile and allowing it to breathe oxygen. Now the chemicals have destroyed all the eco systems of the earth. In a few more years from now this earth could be totally worthless. Dangerous chemicals in soaps, detergents, lotions and cosmetics have resulted in multiple human ailments. To give one example, triclosan, a deadly chemical used in cosmetics, was found in breast milk. The pro-oestrogens in lipsticks have increased the breast size which is a prelude to breast cancer.

Large-scale deforestation, polluting the rivers with deadly chemicals, nuclear damage from decaying material and leaky nuclear reactors pose a threat to human life all over the globe. Advertisements, most of which are false, have made people want to buy things that they do not really need at the time. It creates an artificial need and economic ruination of the poorer nations to fill the coffers of the richer nations. Kenneth Galbraith in his classic, Affluent Society, written in 1956, showed how this system operates! Monetary economy is one of the leading causes of human ills. The “I-owe-you” economy of the west is percolating down to our thrifty economy of the Indian past where people bought things only when they really needed them.

The pseudo scientific temper makes people absolutists which is not good in the long run. Multivists and critical thinkers are hard to come by. Therefore, people can be taken for a ride easily in the name of science. Poor people get excited about the word ‘science’. Anything can be sold if it is labelled as scientific. Faking science research, especially in the statistical medical science base, has become the rule rather than exception. Science is not sacrosanct; it is only one of the many routes to human wisdom, certainly not the only one. The idea is to make the erstwhile colonies remain subservient to the western thinking. Even in the free democracies, western ideas and thought are better respected than their own innate native wisdom to the detriment of society in general and the literate segment of it in particular.

Modern western medical business can not thrive only in the west as the populations there are shrinking fast. They have to sell their goods in the less developed, thickly populated countries. One of the reasons why they push western science in those poor countries is to make a good business for themselves. The nuclear reactors, multiple scientific techniques, medical devices, pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines can only thrive in the third world countries. It is also easy to influence the leaders of those nascent democracies as most, if not all, of them are corrupt. Democracy, admitted Winston Churchill, was one of the worst forms of government but he felt that there was no better system at that time. Today those democracies have become true banana republics.


“Corrupt pay-offs to foreign officials in order to secure lucrative contracts creates an inherently uneven marketplace and puts honest companies at a disadvantage,” said James McJunkin of the FBI’s Washington field office, in a statement some time ago when some of the giants of US drug companies were under the scanner. In China, for instance, large US drug giant officials rewarded government physicians who prescribed large amounts of the company’s medications by inviting them to meetings and conferences with “extensive entertainment activities”. In Croatia, government doctors were given a portion of the proceeds from company's sales of drugs to the doctors' own institutions.

In Bulgaria, local representatives shelled out $28,000 to invite government doctors on so-called “incentive trips” to Greece, as a way to reward those of them who were the biggest prescribers of their products. They also paid $17,000 to send doctors to medical conferences, once again, in exchange of prescribing their drugs. The case against this drug giant came as the US government probed other drug makers, including Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, AstraZeneca Plc, Bristol-Myers Squibb Co and GlaxoSmithKline Plc for possibly violating an overseas anti-bribery law barring employees or those acting on their behalf from paying bribes to officials of foreign governments to either obtain or retain business.


“These improper payments were variously made to influence regulatory and formulary approvals, purchase decisions, prescription decisions, and to clear customs. The above mentioned drug makers are not alone in the business of bribery. Retail giant Wal-Mart was in the spotlight earlier following a New York Times report that said the company paid out $24 million with bribes in Mexico as a way of streamlining construction projects.

Science is also used to keep the third world poor. Perpetuating poverty is the best insurance against continued exploitation of the poor masses that end up paying for their poverty with their lives! The moon mission in India is an example. While more than 67 million malnourished children were dying by thousands daily for want of nutritious food, we were hell-bent on a moon mission which ate up nearly 1,00,000 crore rupees of the taxpayers’ money. Of course, this amount comes back to many in the game. The government is advised by the western brainwashed scientists who have no touch with reality. They are only bothered about the nano problems of the world while the Giga problems like hunger, illness, illiteracy and ignorance are staring at our face!

Medical claptrap brain washes the medical profession that the western medicine is the best that there is and all other systems are unscientific. This myth was also created by the vested interests to sell their wares in the name of science. Corruption is rampant both in conventional sciences and in medical science, in fact, wherever there is money involved corruption has taken root. In fact, serious studies have shown that the western modern medicine has become the leading cause of death even in the USA. Such studies do not get read by the powers that be and their cronies. The bosses go by the advice of their western masters. Cancer treatment, one of the most expensive industries, is being worshipped by our doctors while the whole truth is that there have been concerted efforts in the past to suppress all good alternate methods of cancer management to sell these deadly reductionist chemicals, mutilative surgery and radiation. A recent study showed that nearly 90% of cancer surgery could be avoided without changing the final outcome!

Real science has changed completely as suggested above and that makes human health and illness get a new meaning. Human body is but an illusion of the human mind. All illnesses are in the mind and their management needs to cater to the mind first with change of lifestyle and a good diet. Medical treatment would then become reachable to the poor as well. Will our leaders listen to this sane advice and bring in the change or would they still prefer the status quo which is quite lucrative business for them too?


 “If you try and take a cat apart to see how it works, the first thing you have on your hands is a non-working cat”—Douglas Adams


To read more articles from the same writer, click here.

(Professor Dr BM Hegde, a Padma Bhushan awardee in 2010, is an MD, PhD, FRCP (London, Edinburgh, Glasgow & Dublin), FACC and FAMS. He is also Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the Science of Healing Outcomes, Chairman of the State Health Society's Expert Committee, Govt of Bihar, Patna. He is former Vice Chancellor of Manipal University at Mangalore and former professor for Cardiology of the Middlesex Hospital Medical School, University of London.)



Ankur Bhatnagar

4 years ago

The biggest problem is not science but corruption. I am sorry but the author, in spite of his best intentions doesn't seem to be recommending anything clearly. If at all, he seems recommending going back to the Stone Age.

Sir, are you suggesting that we should believe in matter-energy equivalence because it is written in some old book, not because we can model it in theory and test it practically (Western physics)?

Third world (at least India) is poor not because of Western science but because of our corrupt leaders.

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