Tata Motors’ appeal assigned to new division bench of Calcutta HC

Appearing for West Bengal government’s industries department, senior counsel Kalyan Banerjee told the division bench comprising justice Sengupta and justice Bagchi that it did not have jurisdiction to hear the case

Kolkata: The chief justice of the Calcutta High Court on Tuesday assigned the appeal of Tata Motors (TML) challenging a trial court order upholding constitutionality of Singur Land Act to a new division bench after the state questioned whether an earlier bench had jurisdiction to hear the case, reports PTI.

Chief justice JN Patel assigned the TML appeal challenging the Singur Land Rehabilitation and Development Act, 2011, to a division bench comprising Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghosh and Justice Mrinal Kanti Chaudhuri.

TML had earlier moved the appeal and another application seeking extension of the stay on the single bench order before the division bench comprising justice KJ Sengupta and justice Joymalya Bagchi.

TML is likely to move the bench on Wednesday as justice I P Mukerji, while passing the order on 28th September, gave an unconditional stay till 2nd November.

The division bench presided by justice Sengupta referred to the chief justice the appeal by TML challenging the earlier order validating the Singur Act after the state questioned whether it had jurisdiction to hear the case.

Appearing for West Bengal government’s industries department, senior counsel Kalyan Banerjee told the division bench comprising justice Sengupta and justice Bagchi that it did not have jurisdiction to hear the case.


Mr Banerjee claimed that the appeal challenging the validity of the Singur Land Rehabilitation and Development Act 2011 should be heard by another bench presided by justice Pinaki Chandra Ghosh as such matters relating to challenge of validity of an act were under his jurisdiction.

Appearing for Tata Motors, barrister S Pal submitted that the bench headed by justice Sengupta had concurrent jurisdiction and could hear the appeal like all others and as such there was no question of lack of jurisdiction.

Hearing both the parties, the bench decided to refer the matter to chief justice JN Patel to clarify whether it had jurisdiction or not to hear the matter.

TML has challenged the order of justice IP Mukerji, who upheld the constitutionality of Singur Land Rehabilitation and Development Act, 2011, by which West Bengal government vested the land leased to the company at Singur, before the division bench.

The court had, after passing the order on 28th September, given an unconditional stay of the judgement till 2nd November to allow any aggrieved party to file an appeal, if it so desired.

Tata Motors, which was to set up its Nano car plant at Singur, had moved to Sanand in Gujarat in 2008 citing law and order problem.

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Reliance’s KG-D6 gas output dips to 42 mmscmd

The Dhirubhai-1 and 3 gas fields and MA oil field in the KG-DWN-98/3 or KG-D6 block are currently producing about 42 mmscmd of gas, according to the status report filed by the company with the oil ministry

New Delhi: Reliance Industries (RIL) has seen natural gas output from its eastern offshore KG-D6 field drop to 42 million metric standard cubic meters per day (mmscmd), reports PTI.

The Dhirubhai-1 and 3 gas fields and MA oil field in the KG-DWN-98/3 or KG-D6 block are currently producing about 42 million metric standard cubic meter per day (mmscmd) of gas, according to the status report filed by the company with the oil ministry here.

The current output is a far cry from 61.5 mmscmd achieved in March last year and is almost at the 2009 production levels.

The Dhirubhai-1 and 3 or D1&D3 fields are producing less than 35 mmscmd of gas and the rest is coming from MA oilfield.

Reliance, the report said, has shut three wells due to high water ingress and sanding issues. Current output is from 14 wells out of the 18 wells drilled and completed so far on D1&D3 fields.

The MA oilfield is currently producing an average of 13,375 barrels of crude oil per day.

The report said 14.8 mmscmd of gas is being sold to the fertiliser plants and 24.59 mmscmd to power plants. The remaining is consumed by other sectors including by the East-West pipeline that transports gas from east coast to consumption centres in the west.

As per the status report, out of the 22 wells to be drilled in the Phase-I of Dhirubhai-1 and 3 field development plan, 18 wells have been drilled and completed so far. Of these, 14 wells were put on production as three wells were kept closed due to high water cut and the other well is not in production.

Minister of state for petroleum and natural gas RPN Singh had in August informed Parliament that output from KG-D6 was short of 70.39 mmscmd envisaged by now as per the field development plan approved in 2006.

While Reliance holds 60% interest in KG-D6, UK’s BP plc holds 30% and Niko Resources of Canada the remaining 10%.

Reliance started natural gas production from KG-D6 fields in April 2009.

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Increase exports to narrow CAD: RBI

Despite galloping merchandise exports this fiscal, the current account deficit has been on an upward spiral on rising oil imports, whose price has been on the rise coupled with a falling rupee. Last year the CAD stood at 2.6% of the GDP and it is expected to be a tad more than that this fiscal

Mumbai: Terming the widening current account deficit (CAD) as a ‘major concern’, Reserve Bank of India deputy governor HR Khan on Tuesday called for special efforts to drive up exports so that this will not deteriorate further, reports PTI.

“We are a current account deficit country and this is a major concern,” Mr Khan told an Engineering Export Promotion Council gathering here late last evening.

“We are a balance of payments stressed country. We have to promote exports to see that this is not going out of hand,” he added.

Despite galloping merchandise exports this fiscal, the current account deficit has been on an upward spiral on rising oil imports, whose price has been on the rise coupled with a falling rupee. Last year the CAD stood at 2.6% of the gross domestic product (GDP) and it is expected to be a tad more than that this fiscal.

The commerce ministry reported a robust 36.3% rise in September exports while the import number rose 17.2% to $24.8 billion and $34.5 billion, respectively, leaving a trade deficit of $9.7 billion.

The government has set target of $300 billion from exports this fiscal.

During the first half (H1), exports grew by 52% to $160 billion from $105.2 billion in the same period last year, while imports expanded by 32.4% to $233.5 billion, leaving a trade gap of $73.4 billion for the half year.

Oil imports grew by 14.62% to $9.2 billion in September, while non-oil imports rose by 18.17% to $25.3 billion in the reporting.

During the April-September period, oil imports grew by 42.39% to $70.34 billion from $49.4 billion in the year-ago period. Non-oil imports were valued at $163.1 billion, an increase of 28.52% from $126.95 billion.

Mr Khan also termed the $318-billion forex reserves as ‘borrowed money’ kept for times of ‘extreme distress’.

Improving exports, he said, will allow the country a greater flexibility for its imports which will in turn give access to the best of goods and services.

On the trade payment issue with Iran, Mr Khan said, “to all those sanctions-compliant exports, we are trying to provide a rupee window. So some money in the rupee account will be available with two three domestic banks and it is going to be available shortly.”

Last December, the RBI had stopped oil payments in dollar payments to Iran due to sanctions by the US. Since then payments have been made over a lengthy period and so far no lasting solution has been worked out as yet.

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