Citizens' Issues
SC to examine if defaulters' names can be made public

Farmers are committing suicide for their inability to repay small loans

 

The Supreme Court will examine if the Reserve Bank of India and the central government could take shelter behind the confidentiality clause in the RBI Act and other statutes for holding back names of loan defaulters and the total quantum of money in default.
 
The court decided to examine whether this information could be made public, as it noted that rich people take loans for running their empires and on their failure to repay them, go for loans restructuring by BFIR while farmers are committing suicide for their inability to repay small loans.
 
Expressing serious concern after going through the confidential report submitted by the RBI, a bench of Chief Justice T.S. Thakur and Justice R. Banumathi said that the amount of total default is "very large" and wondered whether the information can be made public.
 
The RBI had furnished the information in pursuance to the court's February 16 order seeking to know about debtors in default of payment of amounts more than Rs.500 crore, along with an affidavit in a sealed cover.
 
The court asked counsel Prashant Bhushan appearing for petitioner, NGO CPIL to frame the questions relating to the issue that would be addressed by the court on the next hearing.
 
For "clarity and focused hearing," the court asked Bhushan, "you can formulate the issues and we will hear them." It issued notice to the finance ministry and Indian Banks Association ahead of the next hearing on April 26.
 
The court decided to address the larger issue as it noted that its concern is not that RBI is a regulator only and is meant to be a watchdog. 
 
As the court asked Bhushan to frame the issues, it, in a pointed question asked senior counsel Jaideep Gupta, appearing for the RBI, if not the names of the defaulters, whether the total amount in default could be made public.
 
"You say that amount that are in default are large. What steps you are taking for recovering them, we will like to hear on that," it said.
 
However, Gupta told the court that "these are aggregate figures (and their disclosure) will have an impact on the economy".
 
Section 45E of the Reserve Bank of India Act prohibits disclosure of any information relating to the creditors, saying: "(1) Any credit information contained in any statement submitted by a banking company under section 45C or furnished by the Bank to any banking company under section 45D, shall be treated as confidential and shall not, except for the purposes of this Chapter, be published or otherwise disclosed."
 
As Gupta stressed that under the RBI Act commercial confidentiality had to be maintained, Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar, appearing for the government, also cited the Credit Information Companies (Regulation) Act, 2005 and the Public Financial Institutions (Obligation as To Fidelity and Secrecy) Act, 1983, to buttress the argument of maintaining the commercial confidentiality of the borrowers in default.
 
As RBI's counsel tried to flag issues in support of apex bank's resistance to share information on debtors including that of fiduciary relationship, Bhushan said that the apex court by its December 16, 2015 verdict had addressed all these pleas and had rejected them.
 
In this judgment, a bench of Justice M.Y.Eqbal (since retired) and Justice C. Nagappan, while reminding the apex bank of its statutory duty, had said: "RBI is clearly not in any fiduciary relationship with any bank. RBI has no legal duty to maximize the benefit of any public sector or private sector bank, and thus there is no relationship of 'trust' between them. RBI has a statutory duty to uphold the interest of the public at large, the depositors, the country's economy and the banking sector."
 
The court is hearing a public interest litigation citing loans given by HUDCO in 2003 to some companies with questionable track records. The court has been told that there is a circle where the mortgaged assets of a defaulting company again go back to it when those assets are auctioned to recover the bad loans. 
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Online shopping top reason for accessing internet: Survey

In the survey, 98% respondents voted for online shopping, 96% for social networking, and 95% for banking, emailing and booking tickets

 

Online shopping is the top reason for Indians to access internet followed by social networking, said a joint survey by American Express and Nielsen on Tuesday aimed at gaining consumer insights on online buying habits.
 
Titled "Understanding Online Consumers", the survey undertaken in six cities - Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Jaipur, Ahmedabad and Hyderabad - discovered banking, booking tickets and emailing quickly followed shopping and connecting with friends to access the internet.
 
In the survey, 98% respondents voted for online shopping, 96% for social networking, and 95% for banking, emailing and booking tickets.
 
According to the survey, the main drivers for online transaction include ease of paying online (51% respondents), safety and security (43%) and faster processing (39%).
 
Cash back offers (40 percent), discount coupons (38%) and cheaper prices (36%) are the other major pull factors for virtual shopping, the survey said.
 
"With a booming e-commerce and e-services market, brands have become price-competitive, 60% of respondents cited that they get enticed to shop online during discount days," it said.
 
Growing inclination to pay utility bills online is another trend found by the survey.
 
"Three out of four people pay their utility bills online. Tech-savvy youth (age group 18-30 years) aptly targeted by online recharge and utility bill payment platforms, show higher adoption rates (81%) for online utility bill payments," said the survey.
 
Delhi and Bengaluru (81%) lead in online utility bill payments followed by Jaipur (75%) and Ahmedabad (72%) and Mumbai (69%).
 
Plastic money also beat hard cash as the preferred mode of payment for shopping. "70 percent Indian consumers prefer online shopping with cards over cash on delivery; quick and safe refunds being the key reason for their preference," said the survey.
 
Women are more active in the virtual shopping landscape, leading online transactions above men, with 74% of the female respondents use plastic money for online transactions.
 
"Women are using credit and debit cards to shop on their mobiles (98%) and book flights online (56%). Women participants (98%) also have higher penetration of mobile apps as compared to men (81%)," the statement added.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Which FMCG company is getting hit by Patanjali the most?
Between the two, Hindustan Unilever has more to lose to Patanjali than Dabur 
 
A research report by ICICI Securities says that only 9% of Dabur's portfolio is affected by Patanjali, in contrast to around 45% of Hindustan Unilever's portfolio. Dabur's chyawanprash and honey are directly affected by Patanjali. In contrast, a wide variety of HUL's segments like soaps, shampoos, detergents, dish wash and oral care are directly affected by Patanjali. Hence, ICICI Securities believes that Patanjali is a greater threat to HUL than Dabur. However, the impact on revenues of each segment of HUL may be small. Dabur's suffered a loss of 2% market share in Chyawanprash in Q3FY15-16, while its oral care segment gained 1% market share. HUL's oral care segment, which consists of brands like Pepsodent and Close Up, is losing market share to Patanjali. 
 
Patanjali has revenues of Rs3,267 crore in FY15-16 upto January as per a Brickwork Ratings India Pvt. Ltd report with a target of achieving ending the year with Rs5,000 crore of revenues. Patanjali has a significant market share in honey, ayurvedic medicines and ghee segments. Oral care segment is estimated to contribute to around 10% of its revenues. Patanjali's products are priced at a discount to HUL's products. The price differential is pronounced in the detergents segment, where its products are priced at around 70% premium to Patanjali products. Detergents and dishwashes are among the fastest growing segments for Patanjali and no wonder that HUL's dishwash and detergent segments are impacted drastically by Patanjali, finds the ICICI report. What HUL and others are finding hard to compete with is that Patanjali has positioned itself as a natural/Ayurvedic brand, which has gone well with the Indian consumer. HUL, like other FMCG majors, is trying to counter this threat. It has just completed its acquisition of premium Ayurvedic brand Indulekha from Masons group. 
 
HUL has a much higher dependence on urban demand as compared to Dabur. Around 2/3rd of HUL's revenues come from urban demand as opposed to around half of Dabur's revenues. Thus, HUL will benefit more from urban demand revival as compared to Dabur. With respect to raw materials, palm oil is an important raw material for soaps. Palm oil prices have risen by more than 30% during the last six months. Similarly, sugar prices too have risen by more than 30% in the last seven months, affecting input costs for food products in the FMCG sector. The strategies that FMCG companies adopt if these raw material prices continue to rise, will be keenly tracked by analysts. Just like many of its peers in the FMCG space, HUL trades at premium valuations with a price-to-earnings (PE) multiple of 46 based on trailing 12 months earnings. Similar is the case with Dabur which trades at a PE of 36 based on consolidated numbers, while at 50 based on standalone numbers. It would be interesting to note whether there is a demand revival in the rural segment. Another interesting aspect would be whether FMCG majors increase their advertising spends to counter the threat of Patanjali.

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COMMENTS

Harish Tripathi

11 months ago

Patanjali rack off now a day and no surprise if it ride roughshod over MNCs.

Govindan

1 year ago

Like Baba Ramdev some other spiritual Gurus are started TV channels and they are surviving with outside advertisements and no way different from other commercial channels. But his channel Astha is different from others. He is using TV channel morning and night and remaining period was given to various Spiritual Gurus who are conducting discourses in day time everyday in different places all over north India. Lakhs of people are attending these discourses (Satsang). Patanjali products have become popular among the devotees of all the spiritual Gurus. So he has millions of regular customers. And he need not spent money on advertisement. He is showing the complete manufacturing process using modern equipments on the TV . This will create an impression that Patanjali products are maintaining quality. So multinational companies cannot compete with Patanjali products.

REPLY

Janakiraman Rajalakshmi

In Reply to Govindan 1 year ago

Oh really ? I do not have Astha Channel.

In a way Ramdev Baba's Patanjali products are acceptable to me. Our entire media , hospitals , educational institutions -all are under the vicious grip of various evangelical missionaries. Baba Ramdev I suppose would reverse this unhealthy trend.

Satya

1 year ago

Good to see PATANJALI competing MNCs hope to see some benefit to the consumers because of this instead of MNCs spending more on advertisement. Even PATANJALI to stop advertising and focus more on research and providing more benefits to consumers as they are saying non profit oriented.

J Pinto

1 year ago

Brand "A" Kills 99.9 % of Germs. Brand "B" kills 99.99% of Germs.

Babaji promises to kill all Indians who do not chant B-M-K-J on demand.

Babaji is definitely a more powerful killer than all other brands.

REPLY

Govindan

In Reply to J Pinto 1 year ago

You are an Evangelist and supporter of MNC who have come here to loot the country. The characteristic of Evangelist is to criticize Hindu spiritual Gurus without any reason. One side you will blame NDA Govt for the price rise another side you will blame Baba Ramdev for selling quality products much cheaper than MNC.

Janakiraman Rajalakshmi

In Reply to J Pinto 1 year ago

Soon he is going to come up with "I was misquoted I did not say that".

manoharlalsharma

1 year ago

Which FMCG company is getting hit by Patanjali the most? Ans;Not a single one consumers adopted brands r impossible to change for negligence difference to price and quantity.(see ASHIRWAD AATA & packings of soaps)

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