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Russia, upping pressure on Telegram app, says terrorists use it

Russia's FSB security service said on Monday that the Telegram messaging app had been used by terrorists to plot atrocities on Russian soil, increasing pressure on the service days after the authorities accused it of violating Russian legislation.

Russia's communications regulator Roskomnadzor said on Friday it would block Telegram unless it handed over information about the company that controlled Telegram, something it said Telegram had so far refused to do.

COAI opposes plan for mandatory testing of telecom products

Cellular operators body COAI has opposed a proposal for mandatory testing of telecom products, saying the move will "cripple" the debt-ridden sector and increase cost of telecom services hurting end-consumers.
In a letter to the Telecommunication Engineering Centre, which is proposing compulsory testing and certification of telecom gears, the COAI said the proposal should be "abolished" as it may act as a "technical barrier to trade".

Financial year likely to be changed from 2018; Budget in Nov?

Come 2018 and the financial year in India could commence from January instead of April as the Centre appears set to make the historic transition to end the 150-year-old tradition.
Accordingly, the next Budget could be presented by the Centre in November this year, high level government sources told PTI here today.
The sources said the government is working on aligning the financial year with the calendar year after Prime Minister Narendra Modi pitched for a change.
This would be another historic change after advancement of the Budget

Banking sector pay gap flabbergasting

Bank of India (SBI), one of the world’s 50 largest banks, pays only a small fraction to its top management compared with private sector players like ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank.
Former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan had flagged the low remuneration issue last August saying it makes difficult for state-owned banks to “attract top talent, especially a lateral entry”.

Will NASA-ISRO satellite pass the Trump test?

Space scientists in India and America are on tenterhooks as Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald J Trump meet for the first bilateral in Washington on Monday.
At stake is the world's most expensive earth-imaging satellite till date being jointly made by the NASA and the ISRO.
Climate change seems to be a red rag for the current American administration. If there is one thing that divides India and America big-time today, it is climate change. In all likelihood climate change would be a point that would figure in the Trump-Modi discussions.

Leniency in GST laws for genuine mistakes initially: Adhia

With the countdown to GST rollout underway, government today promised leniency in enforcing penal laws for violations during the initial period of implementation of the new national sales tax regime.
Revenue Secretary Hashmukh Adhia said a distinction would be made between genuine mistakes in filing of returns and deliberate attempts to evade taxes.
"Our intention is to have a smooth landing of GST. Intention is not to harass everyone in the first month," he said at a GST Town Hall.

India eyes breakthrough on U.S. surveillance drones ahead of Modi trip

India is pushing for U.S. approval of its request to buy a naval variant of the Predator drone, officials said, as Prime Minister Narendra Modi tries to revitalise relations with Washington when he meets President Donald Trump for the first time.

Securing agreement on the purchase of 22 unarmed drones is seen in New Delhi as a key test of defence ties that flourished under former President Barack Obama but have drifted under Trump, who has courted Asian rival China as he seeks Beijing's help to contain North Korea's nuclear programme.

SEBI tightens rules for offshore derivatives

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) on Wednesday tightened regulations on offshore derivatives by increasing fees and banning the sale of certain products, while at the same time easing registration rules for foreign portfolio investors.

SEBI said its board had decided to impose a fee of $1,000 every three years, starting from April 1 this year, on each offshore derivative instrument (ODI) subscriber to be collected by the issuer.

GST enforcement not to be harsh during initial period: Teaotia

To allay the fears of the exporting community, the commerce ministry today said that enforcement would not be harsh during the initial period of GST implementation from July 1.
"Any transition will require some adjustment. Exporters will get an extended two months time for filing returns under the new tax regime. And also enforcement will not be harsh during the initial period," commerce secretary Rita Teaotia told exporters at a session organised by EEPC, FIEO and GJEPC here.

Media companies are getting sick of Facebook

When Facebook Inc wants to try som- ething new, one of its first calls is to CNN. It was a key partner when Facebook introduced its news-reading app, Paper, in 2014. When the social network shuttered Paper soon after, transmogrifying it into a series of fast-­loading News Feed stories called Instant Articles, CNN remained on board. And last year, when Facebook began focusing on hosting live video, CNN was one of the few parties to which it paid a nominal fee to produce clips of, say, election results being projected on the Empire State Building.

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