AAP vs Chief Secy: Police team at CM’s residence
A Delhi Police team was sent to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s residence in the Civil Lines area for collecting evidence related to an alleged assault on Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash by AAP MLAs. “A police team has been sent to the chief minister’s residence for collecting all evidence, including CCTV footage, in connection with the alleged assault on the Delhi Chief Secretary,” Additional DCP, North Delhi, Harinder Singh told PTI.
According to Delhi government spokesperson Arunodya Prakash, 60-70 policemen entered the chief minister’s office. “CM house taken over by police. Huge number of police force enters CM house without any intimation. Police Raj kills democracy in Delhi. Police spread all over inside CM house. If this what they can to do an elected CM, think what they can with poor people!!!” Prakash wrote on Twitter.
Modi, Trudeau discuss terrorism, trade ties
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau held extensive talks on key issues of counter-terrorism and extremism as well as ways to boost trade ties, after which the two sides inked six pacts, including on energy cooperation, reports PTI.
After their nearly two-hour long meeting, Modi said they discussed the entire gamut of the bilateral partnership. Asserting that it is important that the two countries work together to fight terrorism, Modi said there should be no place for those who misuse religion for political goals.
The prime minister also made it clear that those who challenge India’s sovereignty and unity will not be tolerated. Modi’s remarks come amidst criticism of the Trudeau government’s soft approach towards the Khalistan issue.
Sembcorp Industries’ energy arm files Rs 4K cr IPO
Sembcorp Energy India, an independent power producer, filed its draft papers with capital markets regulator Sebi to float an initial public offering (IPO). The company, which has thermal and renewable power assets in India, is promoted by the Singapore Exchange-listed Sembcorp Industries.
The IPO comprises fresh issue of shares worth up to Rs 4,095 crore and an offer for sale (OFS) of up to 146,774,194 equity scrips by the existing shareholders, draft papers filed with Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) showed. This includes sale of 128,941,129 shares by Sembcorp Utilities and up to 17,833,065 equity scrips Gayatri Energy Ventures.
Proceeds from the issue will be utilised towards repayment of certain indebtedness, and for other general corporate purposes, the company said. Sembcorp Energy identifies, develop and operate power generation assets across the thermal and renewable power sectors in India.
Stock exchanges cut ties to foreign bourses after govt nod, say sources
The government fully endorses a dramatic move by domestic exchanges to cut off data to global bourses, sources told Reuters, seeing it as vital to lure foreign investments into the country from Singapore and other financial centres. It was only after receiving the endorsement that India’s three private stock exchanges – National Stock Exchange, BSE and MSEI – proceeded with the joint announcement on February 10 to stop providing data to foreign rivals, said two senior officials at the bourses.
A senior finance ministry official said New Delhi had held “wide consultations” on whether to support the exchanges’ actions, and concluded it was needed to allow a new international finance centre being set up in India “to compete with Singapore and Dubai.” “We have to balance the needs for domestic interests and our image in the global market,” said the official. The move by the exchanges, blasted by index provider MSCI as protectionist, reflects long-held wariness by officials about the trading of Indian derivative products overseas, outside the ambit of domestic regulators.
Nirav Modi & Mehul Choksi’s web of LLP firms under scanner
The Enforcement Directorate, Central Bureau of Investigation and the Income Tax department have started a probe in a string of LLP firms created by billionaire diamond merchant Nirav Modi and his uncle Mehul Choksi in the Rs 11,400 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case, reports Moneycontrol News’ Gaurav Choudhury.
The agencies are investigating whether or not the web of these Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) firms that Modi and Choksi used to run over the last two decades were used to funnel black money.
Moneycontrol accessed the list of these companies and found that in many of these companies both Modi and Choksi have exited as directors/partners over the last few years. In a few cases, they have exited as late as 2016, in one case in November 2017.
USFDA issues 3 observations to Sun Pharma’s Halol unit
The US Food and Drug Administration has issued Form 483 with three observations to Sun Pharmaceutical Industries’ Halol unit. The US drug regulator has asked the company to submit its response to the observations within 15 days. The issue assumes significance as the Halol unit accounts for 20% of the US sales of Sun Pharma.
NSE warns MSCI to stay out of SGX dispute
The National Stock Exchange (NSE), which cut its ties with the Singapore Exchange in an effort to rein in offshore derivatives, warned index compilers MSCI about involving themselves in the dispute, reports Bloomberg. Vikram Limaye, Chief Executive Officer of the NSE, said his company’s relationship with MSCI depends on the New York-based firm telling its clients to not use its data for futures and options contracts based on Indian stocks.
His comments come after the NSE and two other bourses said they would end licensing and market data agreements with foreign exchanges, a move that shocked investors and threatens India’s international financial standing. MSCI said last week the termination was an anti-competitive step and warned that the nation’s market classification could change as a result.
“We will continue to provide all prices and data to MSCI for indexes, provided that data is not used for trading Indian offshore derivatives,’’ Limaye said. “We have had four conversations with MSCI and have explained our position.” The move to end offshore ties is the latest attempt by India to discourage overseas trading of products linked to its markets, as it promotes a tax-free trading zone in Gujarat.
China seizes control of Anbang Insurance as chairman prosecuted
The Chinese government seized control of Anbang Insurance Group Co and said its chairman had been prosecuted, a dramatic move that highlights Beijing’s willingness to curtail big-spending conglomerates as it cracks down on financial risk, reports Reuters. Anbang had violated laws and regulations which “may seriously endanger the solvency of the company”, the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC) said in a statement announcing the seizure.
The CIRC also said Anbang’s chairman and key shareholder, Wu Xiaohui, had been prosecuted for economic crimes. Wu was arrested in June as troubles mounted for one of China’s most aggressive buyers of overseas assets. The Shanghai prosecutors office said in a statement that Wu had recently been charged with fundraising fraud and abuse of his position, and that his case had been forwarded to the city’s intermediate court for prosecution.
ICAI begins probe into PNB fraud case
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI), a state-controlled regulator for the sector, has said it is probing whether auditors played a role in perpetrating the alleged $1.77 billion fraud that Punjab National Bank unearthed last week, reports Reuters. The ICAI has asked the Securities and Exchange Board of India, Punjab National Bank (PNB) and investigating agencies to share their findings about the alleged fraud, including anything related to the involvement of any chartered accountants.
US tells India to cut tariffs as trade friction heats up
US businesses and diplomats are pressing India to cut tariffs, industry and government sources told Reuters, after New Delhi’s move to increase customs duties on dozens of products to help its flagship Make-in-India drive aggravated differences over trade. Ford, which has two plants in India, has sought a reversal of the new tariffs on auto components, while Apple is concerned its iPhones have become even more expensive in the price-conscious $10 billion smartphone market.
The US Congress has been pushing over the past year for greater pressure on India to dismantle economic barriers, and now House Republicans have raised the issue of the new round of duties with New Delhi. “We conveyed our concerns to the Indian government last week to raising tariffs above WTO rates – especially as it relates to information technology,” a Republican aide in Washington said.