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Thursday, November 02, 2000

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News

Airlines
Till submission of final technical proposal -- AI bidders allowed to change partners
THE prospective bidders for Air India (AI) would be allowed to change their joint venture partners/ consortium members or include new members in the consortium till the time of submission of the final technical proposal. It would be subject to the prior approval of the Indian Government.

SIA crash: AI may not face liability
AIR India is unlikely to face any liability on account of the crash of the Singapore Airlines aircraft, while on a scheduled codeshare flight to Los Angeles in Taiwan late Wednesday night, according to senior AI officials.



No change in Air India, IA divestment plan: Yadav
THERE is no proposal to amend the Cabinet decision on disinvestment of Government equity in Indian Airlines (IA) and Air India (AI), which is on schedule and will be completed within the laid down time-frame, the Minister for Civil Aviation, Mr Sharad Ya dav, has said.

Automobiles
Santro, Accent prices to be hiked
HYUNDAI Motor India Ltd (HMIL) is set to hike the prices of both its passenger car models -- the Santro and the Accent -- later this week.

Ford plans IT centre at Chennai
FORD Motor Company has decided to set up an IT Centre for the Asia-Pacific region in Chennai.

MUL Oct output at 17,000 units
MARUTI Udyog Ltd (MUL) produced approximately 17,000 passenger cars during October this year. It closed the month with the production on Monday, the last day of October, touching 1,100 units and despatches 1,462 units, according to the Managing Director, Mr Jagdish Khattar.

Banking and Finance
Professionals on weak PSU bank boards likely
WHILE ruling out the closure of weak banks, the Finance Minister, Mr Yashwant Sinha, has said that the Government is making efforts to revive and strengthen the banks, including moves to reconstitute their board of directors with the inclusion of profess ionals.

Corporate
SEBI seeks joint hearing in Herbertsons dispute
THE Securities and Exchange Board of India has issued a directive for calling a joint hearing on the share acquisition case of Herbertsons Ltd, involving a row between Mr Kishore Chhabria and Mr Vijay Mallya for the control of the company.

Exide to suspend submarine battery production at Haldia
EXIDE Industries Ltd has decided to suspend the production of submarine batteries at its Haldia factory. The batteries will now be produced at the Kanjurmarg plant near Mumbai.

RPG sees turnover at Rs 100 cr this year
WITH its subscriber base having exceeded the 50,000 mark, RPG Cellular Services Ltd expects its turnover to reach Rs 100 crore this year.

Cos Act may be amended to protect small investors
THE Government plans to amend the Companies Act, 1956 by inserting a new section for the protection of small investors. Under the proposed amendment, the onus will be on the company to intimate the Company Law Board (CLB) of any default made by it in rep ayment of deposits or part thereof or any interest thereupon within 60 days from the date of default.

Courts
HC directive to STUs on service terms
THE Madras High Court has directed the State transport corporations in Tamil Nadu to negotiate with the Tamil Nadu State Transport Undertaking Superintendents Federation regarding the service conditions of the administrative supervisory staff.

HC orders power connection to pump set
THE Madras High Court has held that in the light of the statutory provisions, it was the duty and responsibility, as well as legal obligation, of the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board to provide service connection to consumers, particularly when the board had collected the entire amount payable for such connection.

Economy
Conversion of 3 EPZs into SEZs notified
SEVEN months after the announcement in the Exim Policy that some of existing export processing zones (EPZs) would be converted into Special Economic Zones (SEZs), the Government today issued notifications for the conversion of existing EPZs at Kandla (Gu jarat), Santa Cruz (Maharashtra) and Kochi (Kerala) into SEZs.

CII initiative to hone competitive abilities of cos in eastern region
THE Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Eastern Region, has launched a major initiative to sharpen the competitive abilities and improve operational efficiencies of companies in the region, which have been hit by recessionary conditions.

Information Technology
`Healthy competition in South augurs well'
AN 11-member high-profile delegation from the Japanese Government and industry met the Karnataka Chief Minister, Mr S.M. Krishna, and the Industry Minister, Mr R.V. Deshpande, amidst the ongoing BangaloreIT.com expo here on Wednesday.

HP e-solutions
HEWLETT-PACKARD India is showcasing its e-solutions at the Bangalore IT.COM 2000. The e-solutions include business solutions for different vertical markets such as network and service providers, financial services and extended manufacturing.

Convergence Bill in winter session, says Mahajan
THE much-awaited Convergence Bill 2000 will be introduced in Parliament during the latter part of the winter session, according to the Union Information Technology Minister, Mr Pramod Mahajan.

Education portal
eGurucool.com -- a portal site on learning, education and careers -- intends to exemplify the use of Internet in disseminating education at the Bangalore IT.COM 2000 fair. It is to organise programmes targeted at student visitors. These will include onli ne registrations at the site as well as contests.

Subex skill test
Bangalore-based, Subex Systems Ltd, is to conduct a software skills test for IT professionals and engineering students at the Bangalore IT.COM 2000 fair. Said to be designed to test the proficiency levels of the participants, the test is to be conducted online at the Subex stall.

Aztec IPO subscription
THE fixed price portion of Aztec Software and Technology Services' initial public offer (IPO) will open for subscription on November 2, said a press release.

Petroleum
Excessive role of Bengal Govt blamed for HPL plight
THE Deputy Chairman of Haldia Petrochemicals Ltd, Mr Purnendu Chatterjee, has pointed out that excessive role of the State Government in every sphere of activity was one of the main reasons for the State's present plight.

Policy
It's a new guard at North Block -- E.A.S. Sarma to quit
THE Government's decision to effect a change of guard at the Finance Ministry as part of the major reshuffle of Secretaries of key economic Ministries announced late on Tuesday night is being viewed in official circles as something much more than a routi ne affair.

Winners and losers
A BUREAUCRATIC reshuffle is no big deal. It's a routine affair, in normal course, and any serving senior IAS officer has to face such shake-ups umpteen times till superannuation. To a certain extent, it depends on the stability of the political regime in power -- be it the Centre or the States. For, by and large, whenever there is a change of guard in the political regime, a reshuffle among senior bureaucrats becomes imminent.

Politics
Major reshuffle in top bureaucracy -- Ajit Kumar is new Finance Secretary
IN a major bureaucratic shake-up of key economic Ministries, the Union Government on late Tuesday night announced the appointment of new Secretaries for Finance, Petroleum and Natural Gas, Industrial Policy and Promotion, Shipping, Chemicals, Food and Pu blic Distribution, Coal, Small-Scale Industries and Environment and Forests.

Power
KPTCL bid to reduce interest burden
KARNATAKA Power Transmission Corporation Ltd (KPTCL) has proposed carrying out one more round of debt restructuring designed to shave financing costs.

`SERCs expose utilities to higher risks'
THE setting up of State Electricity Regulatory Commissions (SERCs) has exposed power utilities to higher regulatory risks, according to CRISIL. ``This assumes greater significance in view of the fact that power utilities in the country are operationally not very efficient,'' it said.

States
Postal circle to deliver MTNL bills
NEW DELHI: India Post and Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd (MTNL) signed an MoU for delivery of telephone bills of MTNL in the State.

Tax reforms panel report in Dec
MANGALORE: The Tax Reforms Committee set up by the State Government is to submit its first preliminary report in December.

Pollution control facilities at TTP soon: MD
THE work on the pollution control facilities at Travancore Titanium Products Ltd. (TTP) will begin by the middle of December and completed within 18 months, according to Mr G. Sivaprakash, Managing Director of the company.

Second Zap centre opened in Guwahati
GUWAHATI: Zap Infotech -- a software development and manpower training institute -- has opened its second training centre in the city.

Taxation
Expert panel report on service tax by mid-Nov
THE expert committee on service tax headed by Dr M. Govinda Rao is scheduled to submit its interim report by mid-November. The committee, which was to give its recommendations to the Finance Ministry on Tuesday, had sought a formal extension by a fortnig ht, officials said.


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