Union Bank of India launches ‘unioninclusions’

Under the ‘unioninclusions’ initiative, Union Bank has launched five financial inclusion schemes

The Union Bank of India has launched ‘unioninclusions’, an initiative to deepen the financial inclusion. ‘Unioninclusions’ is an initiative by Union Bank of India as part of the nationwide Swabhimaan programme.

Under the ‘unioninclusions’ initiative, the bank launched five financial inclusion schemes. This includes opening of 11 specialised financial inclusion branches, biometric card-to-card remittance facility for migrant labour, mobile van banking to extend banking reach to unbanked villages in Odisha, comic book series for spreading financial literacy among rural masses and solar powering of Union Adarsh Gram

Financial Inclusion branches will have one-main branch to which the allotted villages would be attached in such a fashion that a single branch would monitor the working of 20 customer service points each. The branch will drive the implementation of Financial Inclusion projects at the field level while also ensuring good customer service under branchless banking.

The Bank has also launched the facility of biometric card-to-card remittance. Under this, migrants will be able to transfer money from his card to the card of his relative in the village, who can avail cash from the BCs (business correspondents) in the village itself.

The mobile van banking will cover those villages which are remotely located and infrastructure availability is poor. Under this model, banking services would be provided through a van which will move from village to village on specified days. The Van would have the capacity to serve multiple villages each day of the week. The Van would travel to unbanked villages to provide various range of banking services.

The Bank has come out with three comic books in Hindi language ‘Surakshit Bhavishya’ on deposits, ‘Khushhaali’ on loans and ‘Swayam Sahayata Samooh Aatmnirbharta ki ore’ on SHGs.


BHEL annual profit up 40% at Rs 6,053 crore

Company directors recommend share sale of 5% of government equity that could raise Rs4,500 crore

NEW DELHI: State-run Bharat Heavy Electricals (BHEL) today posted a nearly 40% jump in consolidated net profit at Rs6,053.36 crore for the year ended 31 March 2011. The company had a profit of Rs4,326.92 crore in the corresponding period a year ago.

The company's total income on a consolidated basis rose to Rs43,678.62 crore in 2010-11 from Rs34,498.51 crore in the previous year, according to a statement to the stock exchanges. These are audited figures.

The bellwether’s board of directors, which met today, recommended a 179% dividend, amounting toRs 17.90 a share for 2010-11. This would be in addition to an interim dividend of Rs13.25 per share, reports PTI.

BHEL also announced today that board of directors has recommended divesting 5% of the equity out of the Government of India’s shareholding. The stake sale in the engineering firm could yield the government about Rs4,500 crore at current market prices.

The government holds 67.72% equity in the company. The company also said that 10% of the equity sale would be reserved for employees.

BHEL shares were down 6.6% at Rs 1,935.60 each in a weak Mumbai stock market on Monday.

Meanwhile, the company also announced splitting of the stock’s face value of Rs 10 into five shares of Rs2 each.

“The impact due to change in the accounting policy for 2010-11 is an increase in turnover by Rs2,772.79 crore, provision for contractual obligation by Rs2,077.31 crore and profit before tax of Rs695.48 crore,” the company stated.

On a standalone basis, the BHEL saw profit in 2010-11 climb 39% to Rs6,011.20 crore. This is in contrast to Rs 4,310.64 crore in the same period a year-ago. Standalone total income was at Rs43,379.89 crore against Rs 34,198.47 crore in the year-ago period.

The company registered a profit of Rs2,798.04 crore for the three months period ended 31st March which amounts to a 46% rise over the year-ago period. In the comparable three months, profit was at Rs1,909.58 crore.


Lokpal panel agree to speed up bill drafting process

The Joint Drafting Committee, which held a three-hour meeting today, agreed on a number of basix principles and to meet more regularly

New Delhi: The negotiations on a draft Lokpal Bill gained momentum on Monday with the government and civil society members agreeing on a number of basic principles for the proposed anti-corruption law and deciding to meet more regularly.

Emerging from a three-hour meeting, union minister Kapil Sibal expressed confidence that the draft Lokpal Bill would be ready by 30th June, as announced in a government notification, in time for introduction in the monsoon session of Parliament. The meeting was chaired by finance minister Pranab Mukherjee, reports PTI.

A few days ago, Shanti Bhushan, co-chairman of the committee, had raised the issue of slow progress on drafting the bill and he expressed doubts whether the 30th June deadline would be met. He said that there was consensus on about half the 40 points brought to the table by Anna Hazare’s five-member team and that the discussions on these issues would continue when the Joint Drafting Committee meets again on 30th May.

Including the higher judiciary and the prime minister within the ambit of the Lokpal are sticking points and these are also expected to be discussed at the next meeting.

Mr Hazare’s team has presented a set of suggestions on the Lokpal Bill, from various civil society groups, which include recommendations for public hearings on the issue to be held at various places across the country. Mr Sibal said suggestions from other civil activists were also welcome.

He said there was complete agreement on the issue that the authority of the Lokpal should be independent, without any interference from the government.


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