Economy
Monsoon deficit likely to impact kharif output, prices: RBI

In terms of the RBI's production weighted index, the monsoon deficiency was 24% and is likely to impact kharif crops, especially coarse cereals and pulses  MDT/PTI

 
Mumbai: Expressing concern over the weakest monsoon since 2009, the Reserve Bank of India on Tuesday said rainfall deficit of 21% is likely to hit production of kharif crops, mainly coarse cereals and pulses, and could put pressure on prices of these commodities, reports PTI.
 
Though monsoon risks to overall economic growth could be limited due to small share of agriculture output in GDP, the impact may be significant because it affects the poor through inflation and income, RBI noted in its 'First Quarter Review of Monetary Policy 2012-13'.
 
"Until 27th July, the monsoon was deficient by 21% compared with the long period average. In terms of the Reserve Bank's production weighted index, the deficiency was 24%. This is likely to impact kharif crops, especially coarse cereals and pulses," RBI said.
 
"The progress of the monsoon so far has been unsatisfactory. Some price pressures could emerge in coarse cereals, pulses and edible oils," it said.
 
Poor monsoon so far has resulted in the slow progress in sowing of kharif crops during June. However, there has been improvement in sowing during July for most crops but area sown under pulses and coarse cereals declined sharply, it added.
 
"The crop situation is likely to worsen further if El Nino conditions emerge during later part of the season," it said.
 
Noting that the impact of the monsoon will emerge more clearly in the coming weeks, RBI said that monsoon rains during this year have been slightly better than they were during the drought year of 2009.
 
It noted that Indian agriculture's dependence on monsoon has come down over the years and in recent episodes of deficient monsoons the output impact has been limited.
 
RBI also held that the current level of foodgrains stock is comfortable should farm output be adversely impacted.
 
Foodgrains output in 2011-12 crop year (July-June) stood at record 257.4 million tonne.
 

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Rs5 lakh claim against HSBC, Citibank dismissed

The Consumer Forum dismissed the claim of Rs5 lakh since the complaint was not filed within specified time limit

 
Thane: A claim of Rs5 lakh filed by a Belapur resident against HSBC and Citibank, for their alleged deficiency in services, was dismissed by the Thane Additional District Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum, following expiry of claim period, reports PTI.
 
Consumer Forum President MG Rahatgaonkar and Member Jyoti Mandhale observed in their order that the complainant had not filed the complaint within the specified time frame (the case pertains to 2006), and hence, it was being disposed off.
 
Belapur Resident Manish N Sharma informed the Consumer Forum that he possessed two credit cards: one of HSBC and the other of Citibank. As he had to fly to Cochin, he tried to book flight tickets for three persons on the Mumbai-Cochin route, along with return tickets, by Kingfisher Airlines. He tried to do so through the online booking facility but the tickets could not be booked using both the cards.
 
He further said that HSBC had shown a sum of Rs10,050 as expenses on the tickets and the Citibank had shown Rs1,04,000 under the same head. In addition, ABN Amro card showed a sum of Rs20,100 and Standard Chartered Bank card showed a sum of Rs10,050 as expenses.
 
He told the forum that even when the tickets could not be booked, both the banks made the demand for the money from him. He also said that the entire confusion came to light from the statements of the banks for the period 14/06/2006 to 13/07/2006.
 
Later, Citibank refunded the amount of Rs60,000, he told the forum. However, both HSBC and City Bank started chasing him for the pending amount.
 
He further told the Forum that the banks informed the Credit Information Bureau India Ltd (CIBIL) about his outstanding, as a result of which, when he applied for a credit card with the Punjab National Bank (PNB), for business purpose, it was refused.
 
On account of the humiliation he had to face, he demanded Rs5 lakh as compensation from banks.
 
The complainant, following the refusal by PNB, took up the issue with both the banks on 24 January 2011. He wanted a resolution which did not come through, and hence filed a complaint with the Consumer Forum.
 
The Consumer Forum, while discussing the complaint, opined that the complainant was aware of the mess-up in 2006.  He had time up till 2008 to file a complaint, which he did not do.
 
However when CIBIL had reflected his outstanding it affected the issue of a new credit card to him. At that stage, he preferred to make the complaint, which cannot be entertained.
 
It is time-expired and hence needs to be dismissed, the Forum said.
 
The complainant argued that the date of occurrence be taken as 24 January 2011, when he had sent a notice to the banks. However, the Consumer Forum dismissed his suggestion and held that the complainant was well aware of the issue way back in 2006. Hence, the complaint is time-barred.
 
Kingfisher Airlines and CIBIL were also made respondents in the case.

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HC raps Maharashtra and Centre over PoK man's stay in India

Khan, who claims to be a native of Pakistan occupied Kashmir, entered Indian territory in 1995 when he was nine-year-old and is already married and has children

 
Mumbai: Citing national security, the Bombay High Court on Tuesday pulled up the Union and Maharashtra governments for allowing a man from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), who claimed to have accidentally crossed into India 17 years ago, to stay on in the country for so long, reports PTI.
 
"You have registered case against the petitioner in 2009. We are now in 2012. Trial is still pending. So you (government) have given him (petitioner) licence to stay here," a division bench of justices AM Khanwilkar and AR Joshi said while hearing a petition filed by Siraj Khan seeking his deportation.
 
"This is a matter having ramifications on national security. What is the state government's policy? How do you propose to handle this situation?" Justice Khanwilkar asked.
 
According to Khan, who claims to be a native of Pakistan occupied Kashmir, he had entered Indian territory in 1995 when he was nine-year-old. He has petitioned the court to direct the government to send him back to PoK.
 
The bench was today informed by the lawyer appearing for the Union government that the state government has not yet forwarded Khan's proposal for deportation to the Ministry of Home Affairs.
 
"Someone enters the country illegally and you let him stay here? The petitioner has married and already has children. You (government) have let him establish his next generation here," the court said and suggested making offences under the Passport Act non-bailable.
 
"In this case the petitioner got bail and is now mingling with citizens of this country," the court said.
 
Directing the Advocate General to appear in the matter, the court asked the concerned department to brief the state's top law officer regarding the government's policy in such matters.
 
The matter was adjourned for resumed hearing on 6th August.
 
According to Khan's lawyer Ejaz Naqvi, the petitioner was born in 1985 at Manshera in PoK. As his parents insisted on his going to school every day, he got fed up and decided to run away. One day he bunked school and caught a train which brought him to Attari border where he saw people cross the barbed wire fence. He too joined them and landed in India.
 
The petition claims that Khan reached Delhi in December 1995. After a few days he went to Varanasi where he worked as a waiter in a restaurant before reaching Mumbai.
 
However, in 1998, when he tried to return to PoK, he was caught by a railway ticket examiner in Ahmedabad who handed him over to police. Khan then spent a year at a juvenile home in Gujarat from where he was released in 1999.
 
Thereafter he came back to Mumbai and got a job with a catering company. Once again he attempted to go to PoK through Wagah border but the authorities denied him entry and threatened to put him behind bars, Khan has said in the petition.
 
Khan returned to Mumbai where he met Sajida and they married. The couple has three kids and stay in Wadala.
 
Khan said he approached Maharashtra CID in 2009 to seek their help in going back to PoK but was arrested under Passport Act and Foreign Citizen Act. He was later enlarged on bail.
 

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