Spectrum saga: Reliance ADAG says CBI examined group officials

Following a Supreme Court directive, the CBI is probing telecom companies and their officials with regard to various matters that happened during 2001-08

New Delhi: The Anil Ambani group said on Friday that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has examined some of its officials as part of the ongoing probe into various matters relating to telecom companies from 2001 to 2008, reports PTI.

Following a Supreme Court directive, the CBI is probing telecom companies and their officials with regard to various matters that happened during 2001-08.

"As part of this process, (the) CBI has also examined a few officials of the Reliance ADA Group (ADAG), and we are fully cooperating with the authorities in this regard," a Reliance ADAG spokesperson said in a statement late on Friday.

The CBI is investigating the 2G spectrum allocation during 2001-09. The government auditor CAG had estimated a revenue loss of up to Rs1.76 lakh crore due to alleged irregularities in the sale of spectrum in 2008 by the telecom ministry under former minister A Raja.

Besides issuing 122 new licences, Mr Raja had also allowed dual technology licences under which Reliance Communications was allocated start-up GSM spectrum at the rate of
Rs1,658 crore for a pan-India licence.

Highlighting the irregularities in the 2G spectrum allocation, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in November last year had alleged that Swan Telecom, one of the companies that got the licence, appeared to act as a "front company" on behalf of Reliance Telecom.

The claim had been denied by the Anil Ambani-led Reliance Communications.

In November, Reliance Communications had said that the firm was in full compliance with all applicable laws, rules and regulations, and there has been no violation of their licence conditions at any stage on account of cross-holdings in excess of 10 percent.


Kalmadi aide arrested in CWG overlays scam

The CBI had earlier registered a fresh case under various sections of the law for award of contracts for overlays at different venues for Commonwealth Games at exorbitant rates

New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) today arrested Deorukhkar Shekhar, a close aide of former Commonwealth Games (CWG) Organising Committee chairman Suresh Kalmadi, in Pune in connection with multi-crore rupee overlays scam in the mega sporting event held last year, reports PTI.

The agency had registered a fresh case under various sections of the law for award of contracts for overlays at different venues for Commonwealth Games at exorbitant rates, a CBI spokesperson said here.

Personal assistant of Mr Kalmadi, Mr Shekhar was produced before a court in Pune for a transit remand. Nearly Rs600 crore of contracts relating to the overlays project are under the scanner.

Overlays works included supply of tents, marquees, prefabricated units, portable toilets, containers, security fences, furniture, public display LED boards, floor finishes, material handling equipment, gensets, cabling, UPS, air-conditioners, lighting, civil construction, athletic exercise equipment and grandstands.

The agency had conducted a number of searches in certain premises across the country early in January in connection with the scam in the Games, including those of an officer under Union sports ministry.

The overlays contracts are also under the scanner of the income tax department and the Enforcement Directorate.

The CBI had earlier registered three first information reports (FIRs) for alleged corruption in the projects and events in the run up to the sporting extravaganza.

Two of these cases were in connection with alleged irregularities in the Queen’s Baton Relay.


Sensex, Nifty—a short rally may have started: Friday Closing Report

The market made a new low today but ended in the positive. It had to cross a previous day high to be bullish

The Sensex opened in the green while the Nifty had a flat opening today. The market witnessed some upmove as investors resorted to bargain hunting. However, lower IIP numbers for December led the indices into the red in morning trade. The indices touched the day’s lows around noon, after which select buying led to a bounce-back.

Buying continued in the post-noon session, giving a further thrust to the market. After being mauled for a couple of days, the broader markets were in the limelight today, outperforming the Sensex with a huge gain. The market closed with gains of over 1.5%.

Yesterday, we had suggested that if yesterday’s low holds we could see a short rally. The market made a new low today and then rose. It was the second day the market has tried to rally from around the same level. The Sensex opened with a gap up of 56 points at 17,519, while the Nifty opened with a negative gap of six points at 5,220. The Sensex immediately slipped below yesterday’s closing. The Sensex and Nifty continued to decline, touching new eight-month lows at 17,296 and 5,178 respectively. However, after hitting these lows the market started gaining strength.

Although the Sensex couldn’t cross yesterday’s high, the Nifty managed to surpass its Thursday high to reach 5,319. Both the Sensex and Nifty ended in the positive with the Sensex gaining 266 points at 17,729 while the Nifty settled 84 points higher at 5,310. Reversing the trend seen in the last few days, the advance-decline ratio on the National Stock Exchange was 1326:397.

The market breadth on the key benchmarks was in favour of the gainers. The Sensex closed with 21 stocks in the green and nine in the red. The Nifty went home with 32 gainers, 17 losers while one remained unchanged. The broader markets closed with good gains. The BSE Mid-cap index surged 2.92%, while the BSE Small-cap index jumped 2.94%.

BSE Bankex index (up 3.50%) was the top sectoral gainer, followed by BSE Consumer Durables (up 2.58%), BSE Auto (up 2.56%), BSE Capital Goods (up 2.04%) and BSE Realty (up 1.75%). BSE IT (down 0.12%) and BSE TECk (down 0.08%) were the only two losers today.

Jaiprakash Associates (up 7.35%), Reliance Infrastructure (up 5.20%), ICICI Bank (up 4.17%), Larsen & Toubro (up 3.99%) and HDFC (up 3.89%) were the major gainers on the Sensex. The losers were led by Hindalco Industries (down 2.27%), Tata Power (down 1.59%), Bharti Airtel (down 1.08%), Hindustan Unilever (down 1.03%) and Tata Steel (down 0.79%).

Industrial growth slowed even further to a dismal 1.6% in December 2010, from 2.7% in November and 18% in the same period a year ago. The decline in the Index of Industrial Production (IIP) has been attributed to the poor performance of the manufacturing sector.

Industrial growth during April-December this fiscal stood at 8.6%, unchanged in comparison to the corresponding period of the previous year, according to official data published today.

Markets in Asia settled mixed on Friday as political developments in the Middle East and its ramifications on the global economy spooked investors. Protestors in Egypt decided to pursue their campaign to force president Hosni Mubarak to resign, as they were not satisfied with his move to delegate powers to the country’s vice-president.

Earlier in the day, the Bank of Korea kept the seven-day repurchase rate unchanged at 2.75%, even as inflation breached the central bank’s 4% cap. However, investors felt that the pause was temporary and that the central bank would soon move to hike key rates.

The Shanghai Composite gained 0.34%, the Hang Seng gained 0.53% and the Jakarta Composite rose 0.54%. On the other hand, KLSE Composite fell 0.63%, the Nikkei 225 shed 0.11%, the Straits Times declined 0.84%, the Seoul Composite tanked 1.56% and the Taiwan Weighted tumbled 2.57% in trade.

Back home, foreign institutional investors were net sellers on Thursday, offloading stocks worth Rs954.87 crore. On the other hand, domestic institutional investors were net buyers, pumping in Rs637.30 crore in the equities segment.

Essar Shipping Ports & Logistics (up 9.21%) has informed the BSE that the company has entered into a memorandum of understanding with the Port of Antwerp International for strategic collaboration in the areas of consultancy, investment, training and enhancing commercial relations in the fast-growing ports sector in the India and abroad.

Lanco Infratech (up 1.13%), as a part of its integrated business strategy, is setting up India’s first integrated Solar PV manufacturing Special Economic Zone (SEZ) project in Rajnandgaon district of Chhattisgarh. The SEZ project is being developed in phases and will have integrated facilities for manufacture of polysilicon, ingots, wafers, PV cells and PV modules with capacities of 250MW/year equivalent. The state-of-the-art project is the first such integrated solar facility coming up in India, putting the country and the state of Chhattisgarh on the global map for polysilicon production units.

Tantia Constructions (up 0.31%) has informed the BSE that the company has received a project from Eastern Railway, Kolkata, for construction of a steel structural shed with foundation, building, pathway, drains, heavy-duty flooring, pits, washing apron and other ancillary works inside the Liluah Workshop, in connection with the modernisation of the workshop (Phase-I). The project is valued at Rs24.10 crore.


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