Companies & Sectors
NPPA demands Rs130 crore from drug makers for overcharging: Jena

NPPA has issued demand notices in 885 cases so far involving Rs2,577.28 crore for selling medicines at a price higher than the prices fixed under DPCO

 
New Delhi: The National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) has raised a fresh demand of nearly Rs130 crore from various drug makers, including Claris Life Sciences, for overcharging during the current year till October 2012, Parliament was informed on Thursday, reports PTI.
 
In a written reply to the Lok Sabha, Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers Srikant Kumar Jena said "...a number of drug companies have been found to be selling some of their medicines to the consumers at a price higher than the ceiling price notified by NPPA".
 
"During the year 2012, (upto October 2012), NPPA has raised fresh demand for overcharging amounting to Rs129.71 crore," Jena added.
 
The companies, which have been issued fresh notices by the NPPA, include Intas Pharmaceuticals, Ind-swift Ltd, Aventis Pharma and IPCA Lab, the minister said.
 
In reply to another question, Jena said since inception NPPA has issued demand notices in 885 cases involving an amount of Rs2,577.28 crore for selling medicines at a price higher than the prices fixed under  the Drugs (Prices Control) Order (DPCO, 1995).
 
"Out of which, Rs232.52 crore has been realised till 31 October 2012 leaving a balance of Rs2,344.76 crore to be realised," Jena said.
 
He added that that primary reason for non-realisation of the major portion of the overcharged amount is that the demands have been contested by various companies in different courts of law, including the Supreme Court.
 

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Government convenes all-party meeting on FDI on Monday

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath has convened a meeting of all party leaders of both Houses of Parliament on Monday to discuss FDI in retail

 
New Delhi: With major Opposition parties like Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Left demanding discussion on foreign direct investment (FDI) in retail under rules that entail voting, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath has convened a meeting of all party leaders of both Houses of Parliament on Monday to discuss the issue, reports PTI.
 
"The Parliamentary Affairs Minister informed us in the Rajya Sabha Business Advisory Committee (BAC) that he will convene an all-party meeting on Monday. He also said he will talk to all party leaders in Lok Sabha and meet them separately on that day. Then a final call will be taken on the issue," CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury told reporters here.
 
CPI leader D Raja also said Nath had assured BAC that he would meet leaders of all parties on Monday.
 
However, Yechury made it clear that the Left parties would not budge from their position of seeking a debate on government's decision to open up multi-brand retail to foreign investment under rules entailing voting.
 
Left parties have already moved notices under Rule 184 in Lok Sabha and Rule 168 in Rajya Sabha seeking disapproval of the government's decision on the issue. Under both rules, a debate is followed by voting on an issue.
 
Yechury accused the government of "violating" its assurance given in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha respectively by then Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee and Commerce Minister Anand Sharma in December last year that "FDI in retail would be implemented after consultations with all stakeholders, including political parties and state governments." 
 
In this context, he said CPI (M) MPs today submitted a notice of breach of privilege against Sharma for "contravention" of his assurance that the government had suspended allowing 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail trade "till a consensus is developed through consultations among various stakeholders".
 

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Government detects cases of tax evasion by Cadbury India

The Directorate General of Central Excise Investigation has detected two cases of tax evasion of Rs213 crore by Cadbury India 

 
New Delhi: The Union government on Thursday said that Directorate General of Central Excise Investigation (DGCEI) has detected two cases of tax evasion amounting to Rs213 crore by the different units of the confectionery major Cadbury India Ltd, reports PTI.
 
"Two cases of tax evasion by Cadbury India has been detected by DGCEI during the years 2009-10 to 2012-13 (up to 31 October 2012)", Minister of State for Finance SS Palanimanickam said in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha.
 
The Minister said central excise duty evasion by Cadbury India, Baadi (Himachal Pradesh) involved an amount of about Rs200 crore and was under investigation.
 
On service tax evasion case against Cadbury India, the Minister said it involved an amount of Rs13.43 crore and that the case had been adjudicated and a demand of Rs11.75 crore was confirmed along with a penalty of equal amount.
 
The Minister said a sum of Rs12.08 crore tax with Rs0.53 crore interest was realised.
 
When contacted Cadbury India spokesperson said, "We are fully cooperating with the authorities on this enquiry. Since the investigation currently is under way, it will be inappropriate on our part to discuss the details at this time".
 

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