Sensex, Nifty under pressure: Thursday Closing Report

If the Nifty breaks today’s low, it may slip 5,000 and then to 4,970


The market settled lower as high inflation numbers pulled down rate-sensitive sectors and weakened the likelihood of a rate cut by the RBI in its mid-quarter policy review, slated to be take place on Monday. Today’s loss on the Nifty almost wiped off the gains of past two trading days. If the index closes in the negative tomorrow, we may see the benchmark slipping to the level of 5,000 and then finding its next support at 4,970. The National Stock Exchange (NSE) saw a volume of 53.09 crore shares.

The market opened on a cautious note ahead of the release of the wholesale price index (WPI) inflation numbers for May. Unsupportive global cues also weighed on the market. The Asian pack was lower in morning trade tracking the weak US markets overnight and ratings agency Moody’s downgrade of Spain’s rating by three notches to ‘Baaa3’ from ‘A3’, the lowest level of “investment grade” or just above ‘speculative’ or ‘junk’ grade.

The Nifty opened 16 points lower at 5,105 and the Sensex resumed trade at 16,857, down 24 points from its previous close. Choppiness since the opening bell saw the indices fluctuating mostly in the negative terrain in morning trade.

Select buying in late morning trade enabled the benchmarks emerge into the green and hit their intraday highs. At this point, the Nifty rose to 5,130 and the Sensex climbed to 16,921.

The market saw a sharp fall after the announcement of the WPI inflation numbers, which came in higher at 7.55% in May. The decline continued as the key markets in Europe opened with minor losses following Moody’s downgrade of Spain by three notches. Capital goods, banking, realty and power stocks were on the sellers’ radar.

The indices continued to drift lower in the absence of any positive triggers on the domestic front and on global concerns. The market dropped to its intraday low in the last half hour with the Nifty falling to 5,048 and the Sensex going back to 16,659.

The market closed near the lows as higher inflation as the likelihood of a rate cut by the RBI, on the back of a steep rise in inflation, appeared slim. The Nifty declined 67 points (1.30%) to settle at 5,055 and the Sensex tanked 203 points (1.20%) to end the day at 16,678.

The advance-decline ratio on the NSE was tilted towards the losers at 501:1206.

Among the broader indices, the BSE Mid-cap index tanked 1.27% and the BSE Small-cap index dropped 0.67%.

BSE IT (up 0.33%) and BSE TECk (up 0.13%) were the only gainers in the Sensex list today. The losers were led by BSE Realty (down 2.91%); BSE Bankex (down 2.82%); BSE Capital Goods (down 2.79%); BSE Power (down 2.16%) and BSE Auto (down 1.99%).

Infosys (up 1.09%); Cipla (up 0.58%); ITC (up 0.29%) and Sterlite Industries (up 0.15%) settled higher on the Sensex. The key losers were Tata Motors (down 4.56%); Larsen & Toubro (down 3.92%); NTPC (down 3.76%); ICICI Bank (down 3.50%) and State Bank of India (down 3.06%).

The top performers on the Nifty were Infosys (up 1.15%); ACC (up 0.83%); Cipla (up 0.82%); Sesa Goa (up 0.77%) and Cairn India (up 0.75%). On the other hand, Punjab National Bank (down 5.71%); Tata Motors (down 4.47%); IDFC (down 4.29%); L&T (down 4.07%) and NTPC (down 3.89%) settled at the bottom of the index.

Markets across Asia closed mostly in the negative on reports of Moody’s downgrading Spain’s credit rating by three notches. Besides, signals from the US and Europe pointing towards slowing economic growth also weighed on investors.

The Shanghai Composite declined 0.99%; the Hang Seng dropped 1.15%; the Jakarta Composite tanked 1.78%; the KLSE Composite fell by 0.34%; the Nikkei 225 slipped 0.22%; the Straits Times declined 0.47% and the Taiwan Weighted settled 0.19% lower. On the other hand, the KOPSI Composite surged 0.65%.

At the time of writing, the key European indices were trading with cuts of 0.08% to 0.92% while the US stock futures were in the positive.

Back home, institutional investors, both foreign as well as domestic, were net buyers in the equities segment on Wednesday. While foreign institutional investors pumped in Rs217.68 crore, domestic institutional investors put in Rs76.87 crore.

Carborundum Universal, belonging to the Murugappa group, has inked a techno-commercial pact with Sheffield Refractories and with Anderman Ceramics, both based in the UK. The agreement is for manufacture, supply and installation of a range of high-end refractory solutions for the steel and glass industries and aerospace component manufacturing. Carborundum Universal settled at Rs148.10 on the NSE, up 0.07% over its previous close.

Oil India (OIL) is reported to have shelved its plans to acquire a 51% stake in Mukesh Ambani's Reliance Gas Transportation Infrastructure (RGTIL). OIL has decided to focus on its core business although it had submitted an expression of interest last month. The scrip gained 0.24% to close at Rs463 on the NSE.

Gujarat Minerals Development Corporation (GMDC), a Gujarat government undertaking, on Thursday said it has signed an agreement of sale for non-plant grade bauxite with a Hyderabad-based Anrak Aluminium which would help GMDC earn Rs20 crore. GMDC said it would provide bauxite from its Gadhsisa bauxite mines in Kutch district. The stock closed at Rs174.55 on the NSE, up 0.09%.


RTI reveals that 'Big Fat Indian Weddings' are under scanner

But will the government manage to curb gross wastage in weddings when its own ministers are seen flouting norms?

Since the last several years the “Big fat Indian wedding” may have attained a glamorous tone but the clamour to stop lavishness bordering on vulgarity of wealth display has been making the rounds. Surprise, surprise, steps are being taken by the government itself, whose members of Parliament are also responsible for hosting extravagant weddings.

Recently, Delhi-based RTI (Right to Information) activist Subhash Chandra Agarwal invoked the law to find out the status of the committee meetings and recommendations made to enact a law similar to the Guest Control Order Act which was implemented in the 1960s but was not adhered to. In fact, the central government authorities are unable to find the original document so Assam’s State Guest Control Order Act of 1967 is being used as reference.

What are the repercussions if such a law comes by? Well, you would not be allowed to serve tandoori kebabs, Chinese, Thai, Italian and South Indian—all in one breath—to impress your guests. The plans are to have a Pakistani type law which is being well implemented there since the last 15 years of “one dish, one rule” for everyone.

As per the RTI documents procured by Mr Agarwal, the committee to reduce wastage of foodgrain and ostentatious behaviour witnessed during marriages, parties and meetings was formed on 30 May 2011 for an initial period of two months and extended up to 31 March 2012. (There been no consensus as yet.)

The committee decided to recommend measures on:
•    Launching an awareness campaign through “Jago grahak jago” scheme
•    Explore options to introduce legislative and administrative measures in due course
•    Examine how the government/public sector could set an example by practicing austerity.

Discussion in the first meeting on 30 June 2011 zeroed on:
•    Awareness campaign through audio-visual publicity in schools and colleges
•    Sensitise the student community about avoidable wastage
•    Identify NGOs involved in collection of surplus food for distribution to the poor
•    Ask an expert organisation to conduct a survey on food wastage to assess the magnitude of the problem.

Accordingly, the ministry of consumer affairs, food & public distribution sent a letter dated 25 August 2011 to all state governments and union territories. It has directed them to conduct awareness campaigns in schools and colleges against vulgar expenditure in weddings and other public functions.

On 4 April 2011, even before the central government sent a directive to the state governments, a document procured under RTI shows that Sudarshan Agarwal, former governor of Uttarakhand and Sikkim wrote to prime minister Manmohan Singh stating: “it is with deep anguish that I am writing this letter as a concerned citizen of this country about the colossal wastage of food at weddings and other social functions in the country. It is painful to see 100 dishes being served to 1,000 or more guests at several of these weddings… Last year, a minister in Karnataka had a wedding reception for 30,000 guests in a pandal where he had put 350 air-conditioners. I sincerely feel that we need to revive the Guest Control Order which limits the number of dishes that can be served at dinners/lunches and also limits the number of guests.”

He further wrote: “This will help to embellish the image of the government and show that it cares. Unfortunately, the ministers themselves have not set an example. A couple of years ago, a union minister had his daughter’s wedding at a heritage hotel in Jodhpur and it is reported that 60 private aircraft landed in Jodhpur carrying the invitees for the wedding. People are no fools; they understand everything.” Mr Agarwal has demanded the promulgation and implementation of the “Guest Control Order”.

Thereafter, on 5 August 2011, Prof KV Thomas, minister of state for consumer affairs, food and public distribution sent a letter to Kapil Sibal requesting him to include this subject in secondary schools. The letter states:”as you are aware, large quantities of food served at social gatherings like marriages, parties, etc are wasted while millions of people go hungry in the country. A number of dishes served in such lavish parties exhibit vulgar display of wealth and ostentation… I shall be grateful if you could kindly consider including this subject in the syllabi of the secondary and higher secondary schools through the medium of National Curriculum Framework (NCF) under the NCERT on the same lines as disaster management and environmental awareness.”

However, efforts towards curbing weddings have met with strong objections from various political parties.  Several years back a prominent minister of Maharashtra had invited more than 30,000 people from several villages and towns of his constituency. Being summer time, hundreds of ice blocks were put in the wells for cold, drinking water. While the media carried negative stories on this extravagance, the minister argued that this was the only time he could give back to all the people in whose houses he has had a meal, some time or the other.

food wastage, marriage

Dear readers, we invite you to give your opinion in 100 words about whether you think lavish weddings should be curtailed or not? Write to [email protected].

The picture in Pakistan
•    In 1997, the then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif came up with the slogan “One dish, one rule for everyone” for marriage ceremonies
•    The marriage (prohibition of wasteful expenses) law which was implemented permits only one dish (one curry, with roti, rice and salad)
•    The number of invitees not to exceed 300
•    Rs5 lakh penalty for those violating the norms
•    The law apparently is presently being well implemented and violators penalised
The two main facets of the law:
•    No person celebrating his or the marriage of any other person, shall serve or allow anyone to serve more than one dish to persons participating in the marriage in a club, hotel, restaurant, wedding hall, community centre or any other place except hot and cold soft drinks
•    No person running a hotel, restaurant, wedding hall, community centre or club being the site of marriage ceremony or any caterer shall serve or allow anyone to serve more than one dish to the participants of the marriage ceremony other than hot and cold soft drinks.”

(Vinita Deshmukh is the editor of Life 365 ( She is also the consulting editor of Moneylife, an RTI activist and convener of the Pune Metro Jagruti Abhiyaan. She is the recipient of prestigious awards like the Statesman Award for Rural Reporting which she won twice in 1998 and 2005 and the Chameli Devi Jain award for outstanding media person for her investigation series on Dow Chemicals. She co-authored the book “To The Last Bullet - The Inspiring Story of A Braveheart - Ashok Kamte” with Vinita Kamte. She can be reached at [email protected].)



Dr Sher Singh Sangwan

5 years ago

Wasteful food expenses in marriage was discussed on 26 June 2011 in a seminar conducted by Democratic Forum Rohtak. the convener of the forum Dr S S sangwan elaborated the adverse impact of lavish/ multi-dish on health and food security and neeed fro enacting law like Pakistan. The quest no should be fixed and fine of Rs 10 lakh to both the families of girl and boy be imposed if it exceed 300.

Each family should adopt a unwritten law to invite those only who have earlier visited their house with families.
I myself practiced this in June 2010.

Vikas Gupta

5 years ago

I totally agree with your writeup about Lavish Weddings. I think Pakistan Law in this context is most appropriate. It will help in curbing Black money. In my opinion, whosoever violates this law, There should be complete videography by the Local autorities/ RTI Activist or any other social institution, Each & every expanse of that marriage must be disclosed in the Local Newspaper & thoroughly inspected by the Income Tax Authorities to know the genuineness of source of Funds.

Babubhai Vaghela Ahmedabad 9427608632

5 years ago

1. One welcome change though not much publicised is India Inc big-wigs have reduced their presence in the lavish marriages by politicians.
2. Pakistan Law is excellent and worth emulating.
3. Along with enacting a Law, its enforcement is equally crucial in which We the People can contribute a lot.

Nagesh Kini

5 years ago

Well written Vinita!
The biggest culprits are the sundry mantri-shantri-big babus who indulge in obscenely vulgar marriages. The the marriage in BJP President's house in Nagpur, later in Delhi his rounds at visiting the Congress President to invite her was 'big news'. Then then Civil Aviation Minister a NCP big wig did the same.
The ITeek info. on all expenditure more particularly incurred in cash going backwards from decorators, caterers.
In mumbai suburbs panthers visit Goregoan residential areas to prey on dogs and pigs foraging thrown out food at parties and film shoots.
The measures initiated by Nawaz Sharif in Pakisthan need to be implemented in India more vigorously. Pa rif


5 years ago

interesting article , but at the end of the day . you can't beat of big fat indian wedding , can you now ! . How can the govt deny a girls right to have the wedding SHE WANTS!! If she wants white doves at the wedding , she should get white doves !


5 years ago

A mail sent to your above gmail id bounced.

R Nandy

5 years ago

These socialist era laws are highly illiberal and have no place in todays India.If someone is spending tax paid hard earned money on their family members wedding,I don't think there is any problem.


5 years ago

i don't think law will help. as long as people praise the 'arrangements' and media keeps covering the 'big tamashaas', the need to display will not go away.
the awareness has to come in the society - if people start declining to attend such vulgar wealth display, that would be an adequate start...

regulatory lawyer

5 years ago

Yes, it should be curbed, definitely.

In my own wedding from my side there were not more than 100 guest. My father-in-law did not like this idea.

I told him that, even if you can afford to feed 1000 people on the day of wedding, why waste that money. Instead, you should save that money and create a fixed deposit in the your daughters name (with nominee of your choice), so that money can be utilised as per the her choice upon maturity.


5 years ago

For us in Delhi, the big thing is these huge fancy weddings and other parties held in the lawns and bungalows of Lutyen's Delhi - often occupied by various santris mantris and babus.

A good idea for a series of RTI applications on the subject. Just asking for dates on which special traffic and security arrangements were required for these, for example, would start matters. Or what CPWD permissions are required and taken,if any.



5 years ago

Next is what? Activists will demand everyone should wear khadi because they are wearing the same? Worse, we should be half naked because half our country's population cannot afford decent clothing? Or that we all should go around in bullock carts because people in villages do so?

I think as time goes by, we are getting more and more intolerant and insensitive, in the guise of humanitarian grounds. For example, if I have really worked hard and saved money for my son's or daughter's marriage and out of that money if I decide to throw a feast to my guests, why should it cause a problem to these people? Is the food getting wasted only in weddings and functions? Is it not getting wasted in hotels? Canteens? So will they bring in a regulation that a customer needs to pay double the charge of a dish if he/she wastes it???



Vikas Gupta

In Reply to manoja 5 years ago

I totally disagree with you. If you have really worked hard & saved for your Child marriage, then you must be the first person to part for a more meaningful purpose than to waste for mere Showoff.


5 years ago

excellent points!! the one addition i had was also our media which is complicit in this as proved by the radia episode. as justice katju rightly pointed out, they seem to focus more on film and sports stars rather than on substantative issues with a few exceptions like moneylife :)
the bigger question is how do we fix this? unless we have a bottom up movement by the people that fixes govt. efficiency and accountability we will just continue to be more corrupt and morally bankrupt. blaming the politicians is an easy way out by the middle class. we forget that they are a reflection of we the people and if we do not like what we see, perhaps we should strive to change ourselves.

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