Companies & Sectors
Won't go by Kingfisher’s “empty promises”: AAI

The Vijay Mallya-owned airline owes Rs290 crore to AAI towards landing and parking fees and the Authority insisted said that its dues must be cleared before Kingfisher is allowed to fly again

Mumbai: Spelling fresh trouble for beleaguered Kingfisher Airlines, state-run Airports Authority of India (AAI) has said it will not go by the “empty promises” of the airline management and would insist on clearance of its dues before the carrier is allowed to fly again, reports PTI.


“We will not go by the empty promises of the Kingfisher Airlines management. We want our dues to be paid (before the airline is allowed to take off again),” a highly-placed AAI source told PTI.


The grounded airline owes Rs290 crore to AAI towards landing and parking fees.


The airline’s revival plan has already run into trouble with its engineers stating recently that they would file a winding-up petition against the company for non-payment of salaries for the last eight months while a section of its former pilots has already taken the company to the court on the same issue.


Stating that the state-run airport agency will not settle for anything “short of clearing of all dues,” the source said, “despite all their talks of resuming limited operations, no official from Kingfisher has approached us in this regard”.


“We have made our position clear on Kingfisher dues also to the aviation regulator DGCA, which has to approve the revival plan,” the source said.


Kingfisher, which has over Rs15,000 crore in the form of debt, accumulated losses and various dues, has remained grounded since 1st October and its flying licence expired on 31st December.


The airline’s chairman Vijay Mallya had said Kingfisher would be up and flying by the summer with a limited number of aircraft as part of its revival plan.


RIL hits overseas debt markets again, launches over $500-million issue

For the fifth time this fiscal, Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries, which has a surplus cash of over Rs75,000 crore, is raising long-term debt citing historically low interest rates from the overseas markets

Mumbai: Reliance Industries (RIL), which is sitting on over Rs75,000 crore in surplus cash, on Monday launched an issue of bonds in Hong Kong and Singapore markets to raise a minimum $500 million (around Rs2,700 crore), reports PTI quoting company sources.


This is the fifth time that the Mukesh Ambani-led company is raising long-term debt this fiscal. So far, it has raised $4 billion from overseas in the current financial year.


“The company is planning to raise at least $500 million by issuing perpetual bonds. The issue hit the markets today and the final amount will depend on the investor appetite. The initial pricing is 6% over the US treasury,” an RIL official who did not wish to be named told PTI.


Perpetual bonds are those with no maturity date, therefore, it may be treated as equity, not as debt. Perpetual bonds pay coupons forever and the issuer does not have to redeem them. Their cash flows are, therefore, those of perpetuity.


However, he expressed hope that the final pricing will be much below the guidance because of the strong fundamentals of the company.


When asked why it is raising debt despite sitting on over Rs75,000 crore surplus cash, the official said, the interest rates are at historical lows and hence it’s a good time for Reliance to raise long-term money and that the long-term nature of the bond is in line with the long-term assets of the company.


He further said Bank of America, Citi, HSBC, Barclays Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan and RBS are mandated for the issue.


The RIL official also said this first senior long-rated bond issuance by a domestic company.


The funds will be used to meet the capex requirements of the company that runs the world’s largest refinery at Jamnagar.


The senior unsecured perpetual notes have a ‘BBB’ rating from S&P, the rating said in a note.


“The proposed notes will rank equally with all the company's other present and future unsecured and unsubordinated obligations,” S&P said in a note from Singapore.


“The rating on Reliance reflects the company’s strong competitive position and good business diversity. In addition, RIL has low leverage, and strong cash flows and liquidity,” S&P said, adding the positive rating outlook reflects our view that the company has a large cash surplus to protect its financial strength against any potential deterioration in operating conditions.


This bond represents the first senior long dated/perpetual issuance by a domestic issuer after Tata Power’s recent hybrid, the RIL official said, adding only a only a select few Asian issuers have been able to access this market.


The transaction extends Reliance’s maturity profile and establishes Reliance’s credit curve in 10-year, 30-year and perpetual bonds, the official added.


Stating the final pricing will be really tight he said the recent issuances from MNCs like Prudential Plc had 5.25%, Telekom Austria at 5.875%, Banco Do Brasil's at 6.25% and Axa’s a 5.50% among others.


RTI Judgement Series: Display full info about students from EWS on website

The Director of Education, GNCTD was asked to ensure that all information about students from economically weaker sections is displayed in the schools in Hindi and English and also on the department’s website. This is the 28th in a series of important judgements given by former Central Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi that can be used or quoted in an RTI application

Taking a serious note of unavailability of full information about students from economically weaker sections (EWS), the Central Information Commission (CIC), ordered the Director of Education in the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD) to display the full information on its website and send a compliance report. While giving this important judgement, Shailesh Gandhi, former Central Information Commissioner also asked the Director to ensure that its order is implemented in compliance of Section 4 of the Right to Information (RTI) Act.


“The Director will ensure that all information mentioned above will be displayed in the schools in Hindi and English and also on the website of the Department before 25 January 2010. The Director will send a compliance report to the Commission before 30 January 2010,” the CIC said in its order issued on 21 December 2009.


Delhi resident Ritu Mehra, on 1 December 2009, sent a letter to the Commission pointing out that despite an order from the Commission, the information was not available on the Education department's website.


Earlier on 2 July 2009, the Commission had passed an order directing, KS Yadav, DDE to display on the department’s website, the names and father's names of students from the EWS category for past three years for all schools, on or before 15 August 2009. The Commission, said, it received a letter from Mr Yadav stating that the Commission's order had been complied with and the required information had been uploaded on the website of the department.


After receiving the complaint from Ms Mehra, the Commission, perused the website of the Department and found that the information relating to the EWS admissions is not available in totality and the information that is available on the website is not easily accessible.


Ms Mehra pointed out that pointed out that information about the quota in schools for students from the EWS is not widely disseminated. The EWS quota has been created in private schools which have been granted aid by the government and they are under an obligation under Notification No F/DE/15/ACT/2006/424 dated 25/01/2007 to provide seats to EWS students. Information relating to EWS quota is therefore very crucial to ensure that students from EWS get the opportunity to apply to private schools for good quality education, Mr Mehra said.


Mr Gandhi, the CIC, then directed the Director to ensure that the following was implemented in compliance of Section 4 requirements. All schools will, at a prominent place, display on a notice board:


1. The total no of seats in all classes in a school.

2. The total vacancies in all classes.

3. The total no of seats under EWS quota.

4. Seats still available under EWS quota.

5. Total applications received under EWS quota.

6. Information about when the EWS quota applications will be received and date by which the admissions will be given.


“The schools will also update the information on notice boards once every week. The information needs to be put up in both Hindi and English,” the Commission said in its order.


Mr Gandhi further asked the Education Department to show the Commission a copy of the proposed board before 30 December 2009 and also provide details of students admitted on EWS quota giving their names, their parents’ names on the website within one month of the admission.




Decision No. CIC/SG/C/2009/001627/6018

Complaint No. CIC/SG/C/2009/001627


Complainant                                       : Ritu Mehra,

                                                                  Delhi- 110095 


Respondent                                        : Director of Education,

                                                                Directorate of Education, GNCTD                                                                                                           Old Secretariat, Delhi- 110054


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