SBI says need for more equity investment and raising exports

According to SBI chairman there is a need for more equity investment in the country and enhancing capabilities for raising exports


Bhopal: State Bank of India (SBI) chairman Pratip Choudhary has emphasised the need for enhancing equity and foreign investment in the country, besides taking measures for raising exports, reports PTI.

"There is a need for more equity investment in the country and enhancing capabilities for raising exports as at present we import more and export less," the SBI chairman told reporters while commenting on the measures taken by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to arrest the slide of the rupee.

Choudhary, who earlier addressed SBI officers at its regional headquarters, said, "These are short-term measures while the country needed steps for a long-term growth."

Refusing to comment on the Indian economy, he said that government only could say anything about it but he insisted on raising foreign investment in the country.

Referring to the ongoing merger process of associate banks with the SBI, he said it will be done in a gradual manner, one every year and not all of them together.

The associate banks slated to be merged with SBI are State Bank of Patiala, State Bank of Hyderabad, State Bank of Mysore, State Bank of Bikaner and State Bank of Travancore.

On the issue of appointments in SBI, he said the process would be completed by Dussehra and added that this year the bank would make 9,500 clerical level appointments and appoint nearly 1,000 probationary officers.


Now, crippled Kingfisher losing engineers over non-payment of salaries

Some 60-80 engineers have already quit debt-ridden Kingfisher Airlines in the last 4-5 months over non-payment of salaries


Mumbai: About 80 engineers have quit beleaguered Kingfisher Airlines during the past four months due to non-payment of salaries by the near-bankrupt carrier, sources said, reports PTI.

"Some 60-80 engineers have already quit the carrier in the last 4-5 months, as they could not sustain non-payment of salaries. And more are planning to do so," airline sources told PTI.

Some more engineers are in the process of bidding good-bye to the carrier, they said, adding that "if the trend continues, the airline may face severe shortage of engineers."

Also, around 200 engineers reported sick in April this year protesting delay in salaries.

Unfazed by the large exodus, Kingfisher, however, maintained that it has 'sufficient number' of engineers to maintain its fleet.

"We have sufficient number of engineers to support our operations," a Kingfisher Airlines spokesperson said in a text message.

Relegated to the bottom of the market pie with its share nose-diving to a mere 5.2% in May from as high as 20% last year, on account of a truncated flights, the airline has not paid salary to its employees since February.

The airline, which has not posted profit since its inception in May 2005, made a loss of Rs1,151.5 crore in the March quarter, has debt of over Rs7,500 crore and an equal amount of accumulated losses.

The Bangalore-based carrier, which has also been defaulting on tax payments as well as bills to its vendors, has been seeking fresh bank funds since last December apart from trying to raise overseas funds unsuccessfully.

But bankers have been resisting the demand saying the promoters, including chairman Vijay Mallya himself, have to bring in at least Rs2,000 crore in fresh capital to consider the demand.

Kingfisher had pledged assets ranging from its brand to office furniture for Rs6,400 crore bank loans, according to the Finance Ministry.

This includes a luxury villa in Goa, two helicopters, a building in Mumbai and shares have also been used as collateral for loans as of November 2011, Minister of State for Finance Namo Narain Meena had told Parliament last December.


Business events veil prostitution rackets in Goa, alleges NGO

There is a new phenomenon in which girls are recruited through event management agency by the companies holding their conferences in Goa, Anyay Rahit Zindagi alleged


Panaji: Business conferences and commercial events are serving as a new front for flesh trade with girls from various states being trafficked for these events in Goa, a city-based non-government organisation (NGO) alleged, reports PTI.

Of late, the trend of trafficking girls in the name of business conferences in Goa has been an area of grave concern said, Anyay Rahit Zindagi (ARZ), an NGO working towards rescue and rehabilitation of victims of flesh trade and commercial sexual exploitation.

"There is a new phenomenon in which girls are recruited through event management agency by the companies holding their conferences in Goa. They are also indulged in prostitution during the conferences," ARZ director Arun Pandey alleged while talking to mediapersons on Tuesday.

Several girls from a film city in Andhra Pradesh were rescued by police from Anjuna when they were brought by Andhra Pradesh-based fertilizer firm for their conference in Goa. The conference was to entertain the distributors, Pandey further alleged.

In the recent past, two raids were conducted by Goa police on similar conferences where girls were employed for prostitution, he said.

In collaboration with Goa Directorate of Women and Child Development, ARZ today began a two-day long consultation to formulate strategy to check human trafficking for sexual exploitation in Goa.

The government and NGO representatives from Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, West Bengal, Assam, Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram, which are considered as a source states for trafficking, are participating in consultation programme.

Police officials, who raided few conferences, said they were surprised during their investigations that a new front has been emerging in the state.

"The girls were found to have been brought with the proper knowledge of what they have to do during the conference in the guise of event management," police inspector Gurudas Kadam, who cracked down the racket run by an Andhra Pradesh based company, told a gathering in Panaji.

Women and Child Development department Director Sanjiv Gadkar said the state government will network with the source states to verify whether the event management companies organising conferences in Goa have valid registrations.

Consultations with the source states will help the state government in their efforts to ascertain the background of the girls who are usually employed in the event management during the conferences, Gadkar said.


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