Bonds, Currencies & Commodities
Muttemwar panel seeks CBI probe in future trade irregularities

Powerful traders, who indulged in malpractices, neither have any fear of the FMC, nor are they bothered by the fine that can be imposed upon them, which has caused irregulatities of about Rs4,000 crore, the parliamentary panel said

Nagpur: A Parliamentary Committee on Food, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution, headed by Vilas Muttemwar, Congress MP from the city, has recommended a CBI probe into alleged irregularities and malpractices in the national and regional commodity exchanges across the country, reports PTI.

The standing committee, which placed its 18th report in the Parliament last week, said that those powerful traders, who indulged in malpractices, neither have any fear of the Forward Market Commission (FMC), nor are they bothered by the fine that can be imposed upon them.

"Therefore, The committee recommended that the FMC should seriously consider that cases of malpractices noticed in the national and regional commodity exchange should be handed over to the CBI for proper and thorough investigation, which will help in bringing offendeRsto justice,"  Muttemwar told PTI.

Sources close to the standing committee said that the alleged irregularities and malpractices is to the tune of nearly Rs4,000 crore.

Mr Muttemwar, who is also the AICC general secretary, said that despite the regulatory mechanism in the FMC in place, there were reported cases of trading irregularities and market manipulations.

The standing committee received complaints in December 2010 regarding the irregularities in National Multi Commodity Exchange (NMCE), Ahmedabad and was investigated and certain malpractices of the anchor promoter of NMCE were detected.

In its report, the Muttemwar Panel said that after the malpractices were detected, appropriate directions were given to the Board of Exchange for taking further steps as per the law. Recently, the FMC barred five brokers for a period of one year for allegedly indulging in irregularities in guar gum and guar seed trade that led to two-fold price rise since November 2011.

FMC, under the aegis of Consumer Affairs Ministry oversees the functioning of five national and 16 regional exchanges. The combined turnover of the commodity exchanges is to the tune of Rs181.26 lakh crore, which is 52% higher than the last fiscal.

Committee sources further said that four known companies are invovled in the scam running into more than Rs4,000 crore. The report said that about 4,490 traders minted money and about 9,254 suffered losses. These companies manipulated prices up and down between October 2011 and March this year.

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Public Interest Exclusive
Is anyone keeping eye on ammonium nitrate movement in India, asks EAS Sarma

A truck carrying 30 tonnes of the chemical, also used as an explosive, is missing since the last 20 days. The Visakhapatnam Port alone imports over one lakh tonnes of the chemical. Is there any check on why such large quantities are being imported in the country, asks the former secretary

EAS Sarma, former secretary of the Government of India, has again raised serious questions on the uncontrolled import and movement of ammonium nitrate (AN) in the country. Mr Sarma, in a letter written to the home secretary, said, "As a result of the negligence and procrastination on the part of the government, AN is available readily to the extremists and the acts of terrorism taking place frequently."

Last week, one truck carrying 600 bags or about 30 tonnes of AN went missing while on its way to Singrauli from Indore. The truck left Indore on 19th April and has become untraceable since then. Police from Madhya Pradesh have launched a hunt, but till date there is no news on the whereabouts of the truck and its driver.

Ammonium nitrate is commonly used in agriculture as a high-nitrogen fertilizer. It is also used as an oxidizing agent in explosives, including improvised explosive devices (IEDs). It is the main component of ANFO, a very popular explosive, made by using AN and fuel oil. In the last few years, ultras have been using this chemical to carry out blasts, following which, the government has categorised it as an explosive material. Ammonium-nitrate-based explosives were used in the Oklahoma City bombing and in the 2011 Delhi bombing and the bombing in Oslo in 2011.



"For quite some time, I have been cautioning the home ministry about the large scale import of ammonium nitrate taking place through Visakhapatnam and other ports and the inadequate oversight that is exercised on the storage and distribution of this explosive that moves to different parts of the country," said Mr Sarma.

Large quantities of this chemical are stored in prohibited areas around Vizag and transported to interior places. Much of it may be going for legal and illegal quarrying and mining operations, allowing anti-social social elements to get hold of it, he said.

Since 2006, the former secretary has been writing letters to the home ministry, the National Security Agency (NSA), the ministry for industrial development and the Andhra Pradesh government about the possible misuse and uncontrolled movement of AN in the country.

"I had sent the US and European standards for keeping surveillance over AN to the ministry of industrial development. These standards include regulation of its indigenous manufacture and imports, strict surveillance over the quantities imported, manufactured, stored, transported and sold on a random as well as regular basis, mandating GPS tracking of all the trucks and mandating their route approval combined with the trucks reporting to all the intermediate police outposts," Mr Sarma said.

"In the past, there were instances of AN trucks missing but there is no information on the outcome of the cases registered! It is possible that the chemical has gone into the hands of the extremist groups. Even one kg of AN in the hands of an extremist could cause havoc and lead to loss of innocent lives as it has been the case with most instances of terrorism  during the last several years," he added.

"I am not sure whether anything tangible has been done to scrutinize the unusually escalating demand for ammonium nitrate, the antecedents of those that import, store and distribute the chemical and the bonafides of those that receive the consignments," the former secretary added.
 
Mr Sarma, in his letter to the Home ministry, also raised several issues related with the recent incident of the missing truck that was carrying AN. "In the latest case of the missing AN truck between Indore and Singrauli, will the home ministry assure the country that the precautions suggested by some of us were implemented? For that matter, has your ministry issued clear instructions to the ministry of industrial development that every vehicle carrying AN in the country should comply with the standards? Is there any monitoring whatsoever over the import, storage, transport and sale of AN?" Mr Sarma asked.

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COMMENTS

Shantharam Shenai

5 years ago

Ammonium Nitrate was used in war. Between wars with logic of keeping their factories working, innovative use was developed for chemical farming. Better understanding of nature chemistry has confidently conveyed that vastly increased irrigation is needed, early spoilage of grain & vegetable occurs. Also, understanding of how quality but reduced production with organic processes actually reduce food consumption while promoting good health needs to be seriously considered.

Ratanlal Purohit

5 years ago

TRACEABILITY BY GEO TAGGING AND ACCOUNTING ALL TRANSACTIONS MAY REDUCE THE RISK. CHEMISTS MAY FIND SOME SOLUTIONS TO DISABLE THE CHEMICAL FOR EXPLOSIVE UNLESS REQUIRE IT AS SUCH.
ALL THE DESPATCHES SHOULD BE IN SEALED CONTAINERS AS PER ISO SPECS AND TO BE CONSIGNED TO THE AUTHORITIES AND DISTRIBUTED BY THEM TO AUTHORISED END USER.

REPLY

Ratanlal Purohit

In Reply to Ratanlal Purohit 5 years ago

ISO 28000 ADDRESSES THIS CONCERN EFFECTIVELY.

Java

In Reply to Ratanlal Purohit 5 years ago

Excellent ideas. You were able to come up with these great suggestions by giving some thought to the problem. This kind of application of mind and quick research to come up with practical and low cost solutions is beyond the capability of today's masters of India, who are supposed to have the responsibility for security of the country.

Ratanlal Purohit

In Reply to Java 5 years ago

I don't think no body in Government doesnt know about ISO STANDARDS and ISO 28000. I only brought to the knowledge of Aam Admi. If you think the idea is great please compliment ISO. BIS copies ISO and renames it ISI.
How many know that ISI 1 is the specification of our National Flag. All electrical house hold equipment should have ISI for SAFETY. But BIS cant enforce compliance for so many reasons. It is a nodal agency for Technical Barrier Tarif. It allows imports of Sub Standard goods from China. LEAD PAINTS ON TOYS a glaring example. If a country says their products meet ISI BIS simply accepts. Another famous example is Cell Phones and towers. BIS doesn't enforce SAR norms for safety to be shown on all cell phones. None of the giants Nokia Samsung Sony Blackberry gives these values which is mandatory in other countries.
IT IS NOT ONLY ABOUT AMMONIUM CHLORIDE TO BE MONITORED FOR SAFETY. Its about Governance and POLITICAL WILL VALUES AND GREED.WHICH HAS TO BE ADDRESSED.
Any way I am flattered. Thank you Mr Java. In Marathi I say yava.

Java

5 years ago

The problem is total incompetence in the government. They no longer have the brains or the capability to anticipate and draw up sensible control systems, leave alone implement them. Federal structure has nothing to do with implementing a good system. One explanation may be our fake socialism with its quotas and reservations that actively promotes mediocrity in administration as state policy and a constitutional obligation.

CITIZENINDIA

5 years ago

i dont think its got anything to do with upa or nda OR 3rd front. there are systemic issues and the country needs systems where decision making is expidited and accountability fixed. what we must understand is india is a very complicated country to run, with the worlds best neighbours , its almost a continent made up of different countries. and govts in delhi have been reduced to 272 managers. regional satraps have their own kingdoms and there is no unified law as the country stands divided, something i dont think our constitution envisions. hence id say our system is pressurised to the hilt, almost collapsing or on auto pilot. we need an emergency kind of situation where things are fixed no questions asked. this federalism is doing a lot of damage in current scenario and things are going to get worse if some much needed reforms arent effected soon. as abhi sab chalta hai as there is no way system can enforce itself.

renu

5 years ago

This in itself is an explosive news But all our mainstream media is busy carrying irrelevant information. Though the truck went missing 20 days back, I have not heard any news channel covering this story or asking the home ministry about their plan of action. Everyone in this govt along with their favourable media people are busy minting money out of citizens' life. Who cares about all these innocent citizens of India. As and when another blast would happen, all news channels along with home ministry would be all over places on these channels counting the lost lives. Till then why would they respond to Mr Sarna? After all this is the USP of this UPA Govt.

I really wonder that MOneylife is so different from the Mainstream Media and perhaps that is why I am a Fan and follower of Moneylife. Pls carry on this good work.

Dena Bank Q4 net profit soars 62% at Rs255 crore

For FY12, Dena Bank reported a net profit of Rs803.14 crore, up 31%, as compared to Rs611.6 crore of previous fiscal

New Delhi: Public sector lender Dena Bank on Tuesday posted 62% jump in net profit at Rs254.79 crore for the fourth quarter (Q4) ended March 2012. The bank had a net profit of Rs157 crore during the January-March quarter in the previous financial year.

Total income of the bank in fourth quarter rose to Rs2,166.36 crore, compared to Rs1,588.2 crore in the same quarter a year ago, Dena Bank said in a filing on the BSE.

The bank has proposed a dividend of 30%, or Rs3 per share for FY2011-12, it said.

For the full financial year ended March 2012, Dena Bank reported a net profit of Rs803.14 crore, up 31%, as compared to Rs611.6 crore of previous fiscal. Total income of the lender rose to Rs7,376.30 crore in the financial year 2011-12 from Rs5,567.3 crore in the last fiscal.

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