Plan and Policy

Plan & Policy

GoM discusses AI divestment, sans results

In less than a month, the Modi government’s top ministers went into a huddle in North Block again on Wednesday to chart out a disinvestment plan for the ailing national carrier Air India, signalling the urgency to sell it.

The group of ministers (GoM), headed by finance minister Arun Jaitley, is learnt to have taken stock of the progress made so far on selling the airline to private firms.

It was decided by the group of ministers that financial and legal advisors would be appointed at the earliest to speed up the sale process.

No festive cheer for manufacturing

Credit growth in India is unlikely to pick up during the festival season, though improvement is expected in September industrial growth numbers due to restocking by the automobile industry, according to an SBI report on Thursday.

The yearly SBI composite index for September 2017 is at 22-month high of 53.6 (moderate growth) compared with last month’s index of 50.9 (low growth), said the SBI Ecowrap report. The monthly index also jumped to one and half year high of 54.2 (moderate growth) in September, compared with 49.9 (low decline) in August.

Stimulus on cards; focus likely on infra, manufacturing

After wide consultations with his cabinet colleagues and key aides over the past two days, finance minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday hinted at stimulus measures to boost economic growth. The details of measures to bolster the slowing economy would be unveiled after further consultations with prime minister Narendra Modi.

Though he did not say “stimulus measures” in as many words in his interaction with the media, Jaitley said, “We have taken note of all the economic indicators available. The government will take any additional moves which are necessary.”

Centre plans to clear buffer stock of pulses

Concerned over the possibility of pulses rotting at warehouses, the government is planning to sell as much lentil (dal) as possible from the buffer stock, estimated at 18 lakh tonnes. Food minister Ram Vilas Paswan on Wednesday said the government is trying to sell pulses and asked procurement agencies, including cooperative retailer NCCF, to offload them.

Trai asserts IUC maths scientific, no question of favouring anyone

Under attack for allegedly showing ‘favours’ to Reliance Jio through its latest IUC regulation, telecom regulator Trai said on Wednesday that there was no question of any bias.

Trai decided on Tuesday to slash the charge paid by an operator for terminating a mobile call on a rival network — also called the interconnection usage charge (IUC) — to 6 paise a minute, from the current 14 paise. The calculation of 6 paise a minute is a scientifically worked out method and carries no bias for or against any operator.

RBI may continue to buy dollar than cut repo rate

The Reserve of Bank of India (RBI) may continue buying dollars instead of cutting rates to cap rupee gains on back of surplus in balance of payments (BoP) account and use sales of government securities to suck out excess rupee liquidity infused due to forex intervention, experts said.

SC asks Unitech to pay damages to homebuyers

The Supreme Court on We­d­nesday  directed embattled real estate firm Unitech Residential Resorts to pay Rs 80,000 each as compensati­on to 39 homebuyers towar­ds litigation cost and causing harassment to them.

A bench comprising chief justice Dipak Misra and justices Amitava Roy and A M Khanwilkar disposed of the appeal filed by the real estate company against the order of the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commi­ssion (NCDRC) and asked it to pay the cost within eight weeks to the homebuyers.

Job losses accelerate as economy slows

Prime minister Narendra Modi has a jobs problem. He swept to power three years ago promising India’s poor and middle classes he’d restore their “dignity” after years of swelling inequality, with job creation central to his pitch. But now, the jobs market has been slugged by last November’s shock cash ban and July’s imposition of a goods and services tax.