ECONOMY - 2017 APRIL

April 1

India's April-Feb fiscal deficit rises 6 per cent at Rs. 6.05 lakh crore (YoY).
The Centre's fiscal deficit for April-February 2017 came in at Rs. 6.05 lakh crore, reflecting 113.4 per cent of the full year target of Rs. 5.34 lakh crore.
For the current fiscal, the Centre had pegged the fiscal deficit target at Rs. 5.34 lakh crore, lower than the revised estimate of Rs. 5.35 lakh crore for 2015-16.
At the same stage last fiscal, the Centre's fiscal deficit had surpassed the Budget target to the tune of 107.1 per cent.
Meanwhile, revenue deficit for April-February 2017 came in at Rs. 4.44 lakh crore, reflecting 142.8 per cent of the targeted Rs. 3,10,998 crore for 2015-16, the official data released by the Controller General of Accounts (CGA) showed.

Japan commits 371 billion Yen assistance for infrastructure projects in India.
Japan will provide 371 billion Yen or Rs.21,590 crores as official development assistance (ODA) to India for various infrastructure projects, including the dedicated freight corridor.
Notes in this regard were exchanged between S. Selvakumar, Joint Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs; and Kenji Hiramatsu, Ambassador of Japan to India.
The total commitment of Japan International Cooperation Agency ODA during two financial years 2015-16 and 2016-17 is 761.40 billion yen, which is 43.50 per cent of the total target for five years.

NTPC crosses 50 GW generation capacity mark.
State-run NTPC has crossed the milestone of 50 GW power generation capacity which will help the country realise the goal of power for all.
According to a company statement, with commissioning of 500 MW unit at Unchahar in Uttar Pradesh, the total installed capacity of NTPC has increased to 50,498 MW.
In FY17, NTPC's annual generation topped 250 BU (billion units). The company also commenced coal mining at Pakri Barwadih. Besides, it commissioned the first high efficiency 800 MW unit at Kudgi and has steadily added to its renewable portfolio.
Ranked the third-largest power company in terms of coal based power generation capacity, second in Plant Load Factor, third in machine availability and seventh in terms of electricity generation, NTPC is among the top 20 coal based power generating companies globally.

NPPA increases stent prices by around 2 per cent.
Drug price regulator, the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA), has increased price of stents by around 2 per cent effective on 1st April after taking into account wholesale price index.
The prices of bare metal stents have gone up to Rs. 7,400 from the earlier announced prices of Rs. 7,260. Similarly, price of drug-eluting stent has increased to Rs. 30,180 from Rs. 29,600 earlier.
In February, the NPPA brought stents under price control and capped ceiling price of coronary stents at Rs. 7,260 for bare metal stent and Rs. 29,600 for drug-eluting ones.
The corresponding average MRPs before the price control stood at Rs. 45,100 and Rs. 1.21 lakh, respectively.

April 2

Indian economy expected to grow at 7.2 per cent in 2017-18.
Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is expected to grow at 7.2 per cent in 2017-18 and 7.7 per cent in 2018-19 according to IMF estimates.
Delivering the keynote address at the opening ceremony of the second New Development Bank Annual Board of Governors' meeting in New Delhi,
Though emerging markets and developing economies show better growth prospects, they also face newer challenges.
Most notably a possible shift towards inward-looking policy platforms and protectionism, a sharper than expected tightening in global financial conditions that could interact with balance sheet weaknesses in parts of the euro area and increased geopolitical tensions, including unpredictable economic policy of USA.

Oracle looking to acquire Accenture: Reports.
American computer software major Oracle is looking to acquire management consulting company Accenture. Oracle is also hired consultants to look into a possible deal.
While Accenture has a market cap of over $77 billion and employs around 4 lakh people worldwide, Oracle has a market cap of $184 billion.
The rumour of Oracle eyeing Accenture surfaced on The Register’s website, which cited sources that Oracle has hired global specialists to explore the feasibility of buying Accenture, which has a market capitalisation of $77.17 billion.

IIT Madras, Indian Army sign MoU.
The Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (IITM) and the Indian Army have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to identify the critical technological areas that can be enhanced in the armed forces.
IITM Director Bhaskar Ramamurthi and Deputy Chief of Army Staff (P&S) Lt. Gen. Subrata Saha signed the MoU in this regard.
The objective was to facilitate prestigious institutions such as the IITs to achieve a better understanding of the critical technology requirements of the Indian Army through seamless interaction between the IITM faculty and the Army officers.
As per the MoU, the Army will sponsor four officers for doctoral programmes besides a five-day Technology Development Programme for 15 officers on a biannual basis.

Govt collects over Rs. 2 lakh crore from levies on petrol, diesel.
The government total collection through excise duty on petrol and diesel has been Rs. 2,01,935 crore for the first 11 months of FY 2016-17.
The excise levy on petrol earned Rs. 64,509 crore and while that on diesel garnered Rs. 1,37,426 crore.
According to Minister of State for Finance Santosh Kumar Gangwar an additional duty of excise of Rs. 6 per litre is levied and collected on Motor Spirit (petrol).

Tata Motors sets up joint venture with Jayem Auto.
Tata Motors announced a joint venture with Jayem Automotives for the manufacture of special performance vehicles of Tata cars that incorporate customised design and technical features by the Coimbatore-based firm.
The 50:50 joint venture - JT Special Vehicles - will develop a range of special performance vehicles for its passenger car customers in a phased manner at a dedicated line, currently being planned in Coimbatore.
This Partnership was a step towards creating long-term relationships as a part of the ''transformation journey of Tata Motors to bring exciting performance variants to its product range''.

April 3

Under GST, tax evasion over Rs. 5 crore will be a non-bailable offence.
Tax evasion exceeding an amount of Rs. 5 crore under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime will be a non-bailable offence with the police having the authority to arrest persons without a warrant.
The Central GST (CGST) Act provides that if the offences relating to taxable goods and/or services where the amount of tax evaded or the amount of input tax credit wrongly availed or the amount of refund wrongly taken exceeds Rs. 5 crore, then they will be cognizable and non-bailable.
In a 223 page FAQ (frequently asked questions) on GST, the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) has also stated that other offences under the act are non-cognizable and bailable. The government has set a target date of July 1 for roll out of the GST, which will subsume central excise, service tax, VAT and other local levies.

Temasek invests Rs. 200 crore additional capital in Fullerton India.
Fullerton India has received additional capital infusion of Rs. 200 crore from its parent, Fullerton Financial Holdings Pte. Ltd, a step-down subsidiary of Temasek Holdings Private Limited.
The capital infusion will primarily support future business growth of Fullerton India's housing finance arm - Grihashakti.
Fullerton India Home Finance Company Limited was launched in 2016. It operates under the brand name Grihashakti, provides retail and affordable home finance solutions, and operates out of 41 branches across the country.

PE investment in office assets to hit $3.5 billion: C&W.
Private equity funding in Indian office assets in 2017 will surge four-fold to $3.5 billion - beating the 2014 peak, pointing to unabated interest of global and domestic institutional investors in commercial real estate.
Buoyed by stability in the commercial sector as well as potential to list under REITs, institutional investors have been keen to plough in funds in leased office assets.
Some large office deals currently underway include DLF's rental arm stake sale to GIC, K. Raheja Corp's commercial portfolio stake sale to Blackstone Group and Hiranandani Group's office portfolio stake sale to Brookfield.

April 4

Govt clears proposal to buy Barak missiles for Navy.
The government approved procurement of a fresh batch of Barak surface-to-air missiles for naval warships from Israel to enhance India’s maritime capability in view of the changing security dynamics in the Indian Ocean region.
A meeting of the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), chaired by Defence Minister Arun Jaitley, approved capital acquisition proposals totalling over Rs. 860 crore, including for the purchase of Barak missiles.
The DAC, which is Defence Ministrys highest decision making body for capital acquisition, also accorded Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) for procurement of equipment such as underwater robot to counter mines in the sea.
The equipment is being procured as a repeat order with buy global categorisation at a cost of approximately Rs 311 crore.

MoUs worth Rs. 2.3 lakh crore signed between Indian, and Malaysian firms.
Indian and Malaysian firms have signed 31 pacts expecting investments of about $36 billion (around Rs. 2.3 lakh crore) in several sectors including construction, pharma, and education.
The MoUs were exchanged in the presence of Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak. The Malaysian PM is currently on a six-day tour to India.

Ola integrates with UPI to simplify payment options.
Cab aggregator Ola has integrated with Unified Payment Interface (UPI) to simplify digital payment options for its customers.
This integration will allow Ola customers to use their unique UPI IDs to pay for all their rides on the Ola platform.
Payments through UPI will be much faster and convenient; and it will continue to innovate and adopt similar integration with other platforms to create a robust payment mechanism.
While making payments for their Ola rides, a customer will now have an option called 'Pay by UPI' along with cash, debit/credit card and Ola Money wallet option.

WhatsApp mulls foray into digital payments with India launch.
Instant messaging app WhatsApp, owned by Facebook Inc, is mulling a foray into digital payment services in India, its first such offering globally, and has advertised to hire a digital transactions lead in the country.
A WhatsApp move into digital payments in India, its biggest market that is home to 200 million of its billion plus global users, would replicate similar moves by messaging apps like Tencent Holdings Ltd's WeChat in China.
WhatsApp is working to launch person-to-person payments in India in the next six months.

April 5

Amazon.in launches 'Classroom' for new sellers.
To make on-boarding easy for new sellers, Amazon India has launched an initiative called Amazon Classroom, a virtual training programme to help teach them the nuances of online selling.
The programme focusses on areas such as order processing, adding products and managing returns that are required to operate a successful online business.
According to the company, new sellers can now perform demos of their seller account dashboard through interactive courses at their own pace.
They get the flexibility to redo the steps, clear their doubts and get trained by Amazon experts on how to use the seller portal, in real-time while doing the course.

WTO sets up panel to resolve steel dispute with India, Japan.
The WTOs dispute settlement set up a panel to resolve the dispute between Japan and India over imposition of safeguard import duty on iron and steel products. As both the sides failed to resolve the issue in the bilateral consultation process, Japan had sought formation of dispute resolution panel.
The dispute settlement body of the WTO has agreed to establish the panel.
Japan in December dragged India to the WTO against certain measures taken by New Delhi on imports of iron and steel products.
Japan, which is the second largest steel producer in the world, had alleged that duties imposed on steel imports by India violate WTO trade norms.

ICICI Banks arm plans to acquire stake in Theobroma for $20 million.
ICICI Venture will invest $20 million to acquire a significant stake Theobroma. The alternate investment arm of top private sector lender ICICI Bank and the leading bakery chain will ink a deal to formalise the transaction.
The investment will mark the third transaction from the home grown PE firm's latest fund, 'India Alternate Fund 4'.
Early last year, ICICI Venture announced its first close of $190 million, subsequently reached $350 million with the participation of a large global sovereign wealth fund and a leading European institution. Candle Partners was the exclusive financial advisor in the deal.

Nitin Gadkari announces Rs. 40,000 crore expressway project in northeast.
The first express highway project in the northeast region will be developed along the Brahmaputra river in Assam at an estimated investment of Rs. 40,000 crore,. This 1,300-km-long express highway is likely to incur an investment of Rs. 40,000 crore.
Making the announcement at the closing ceremony of the 'Namami Brahmaputra' festival, the minister requested the Assam Chief Minister to carry out land acquisition work for the modern road.
The Centre will dredge the Brahmaputra river from Sadia in Upper Assam to increase navigational channels up to Chittagong port in Bangladesh.
In Gadkari's presence, a tripartite agreement was signed for dredging and construction of the express highway in Assam. The agreement was signed between the Assam government, the National Highways Authority of India and the Inland Waterways of India.

April 6

Paytm may buy Freecharge at 50% discount for $200 million.
SoftBank-backed digital wallet Freecharge, which is owned by Snapdeal, is up for sale for as low as $150-200 million.
The Alibaba-owned Paytm is one of the frontrunners to buy Freecharge if both parties agree to the terms.
SoftBank's priority at the moment is to sort out the shareholder discord at Snapdeal and get a toehold in Flipkart, after which it will finalise the sale of Freecharge.
Japanese investor SoftBank is believed to be re-working its plan for sale of e-commerce platform Snapdeal and a final decision is likely to be made in the next few weeks.

BHEL bags order from Railways for solar power plant.
State-owned power equipment major BHEL has bagged an order from Indian Railways for installing 2 MW roof-top solar photo voltaic systems at Diesel Locomotive Modernisation Works (DMW) in Patiala.
The contract agreement was signed between BHEL and Indian Railways Organisation for Alternate Fuels (IROAF).
It envisages design, supply, installation, testing and commissioning of grid connected roof top solar photo voltaic power plant with all electrical and associated equipment including civil works.
It also includes operations and maintenance for 5 years.

India allows duty-free import of 500,000 tonnes of raw sugar.
India, the world's biggest sugar consumer, allowed duty-free imports of 500,000 tonnes of raw sugar, as a drought curtailed the country's production below consumption levels for the first time in seven years.
The duty-free imports will be allowed until June 12. The imports will harden global prices as India was an exporter of sugar until last year.
The country's sugar output in the 2016-17 year that started on October 1 is likely to fall to 20.3 million tonnes, compared to annual demand of around 25 million tonnes a year ago.

Inflation to average at 5 per cent in FY'18: Crisil.
CPI inflation is likely to average higher at 5 per cent in the current fiscal on expectations of increasing pressure on food prices as well as uptick in global oil and commodity rates.
Consumer price index (CPI)-based inflation averaged 4.6 per cent in the first 11 months of 2016-17 and could be about 4.7 per cent for the entire fiscal ended March 31, 2017.
Inducements to inflation are indeed many in the road ahead. To wit, pent-up demand after demonetisation, lower bank lending rates, the second tranche of payments based on the Seventh Pay Commission recommendations, and an uptick in global oil, metals and agri-commodity prices after about 3 benign years.

April 7

India & Israel sign defence deals worth over 2 billion dollar.
India and Israel signed mega defence deals worth over 2 billion dollar for advanced surface-to-air missile (SAM) systems, to further tighten the bilateral strategic partnership ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Israel in July.
The SAM systems are designed to destroy hostile aircraft, missiles and drones at a range of 70 km.
The major deal was for the joint project between the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) for the Barak-8 medium-range SAM systems to initially include one regiment of 16 launchers and 560 missiles for the Indian Army.

India's growth to accelerate to 7.4 per cent in 2017-18: ADB.
Shrugging off the impact of demonetisation, the Indian economy is estimated to grow by 7.4 per cent in 2017-18 and 7.6 per cent in the next fiscal.
The impact of the demonetisation of high value banknotes is dissipating as the replacement banknotes enter circulation. The economy is estimated to have grown by 7.1 per cent last fiscal.
Stronger consumption and fiscal reforms are also expected to improve business confidence and investment prospects in the country.
It also expects inflation to rise this fiscal from 4.7 per cent in 2016. It has pegged inflation at 5.2 per cent in 2017-18 and 5.4 per cent in 2018-19.

IFC plans to invest up to $25 million in LeapFrog's priority sector fund.
International Finance Corporation or IFC is planning to invest up to $25 million in the UK-based LeapFrog Investments's emerging consumer fund with priority sector focus, which is seeking to raise funds to invest into financial services and healthcare in South Asia and Southeast Asia and African markets.
The fund will make equity and quasi-equity investments averaging $25 to $30 million, with one-third of it focusing on the healthcare segment and two-thirds on financial services investments.
LeapFrog Emerging Consumer Fund III, a 10-year closed-end private equity fund that focus on the emerging consumer.

April 8

India, Bangladesh sign 22 agreements in various sectors; Teesta agreement elusive.
India and Bangladesh signed 22 pacts in key sectors including defence and civil nuclear but the long-pending Teesta waters sharing agreement remained elusive though Prime Minister Narendra Modi conveyed his government's commitment for an ''early solution''.
The two countries also agreed to confront challenges of terrorism with deeper security and defence cooperation with Modi terming spread of radicalism as a ''grave threat'', not only to the two countries but to the entire region.
Modi announced a Line of Credit of Rs. 3,213.5 crore for Bangladesh's defence procurement and Rs. 28,921 crore for projects in priority sectors.
The two PM's launched the Maitree Express train that will run between Kolkata and Khulna in Bangladesh and bus services between Kolkata and Dhaka via Khulna.

NPCI disburses Rs. 245 crore in prize money under Niti Aayog's Lucky Draw scheme.
National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), the umbrella organisation for all retail payment systems in the country, has disbursed over Rs. 245 crore worth of prize money to about 18 lakh winners under the NITI Aayog's Lucky Draw schemes for consumers and merchants. This initiative was announced to encourage people to carry out more digital transactions.
The transaction repository of the first draw on December 25, 2016, which was at 6.39 crore, increased to 28.32 crore on the 97th draw. The 98th draw is scheduled in Goa and 99th in Allahabad.
The 100th and final mega draw is likely to take place during the period from April 9 to April 14, 2017. The date and venue is being finalised by Government of India.
There are three mega prizes for consumers worth Rs. 1 crore, Rs. 50 lakh and Rs. 25 lakh. For merchants too there would be three mega prizes worth Rs. 50 lakh, Rs. 25 lakh and Rs. 12 lakh. It will be declared in the 100th Mega draw.

April 9

Global crude oil prices hit 1 month high.
Global crude oil prices hit a 1 month high, after the US fired missiles at a military base in Syria, raising concerns that the conflict could spread in the oil-rich region.
Brent crude oil futures rose 68 cents, to 55.57 dollars a barrel, after reaching an intra-day peak of 56.08 dollars a barrel, the highest since 7th of March. U.S. crude rose 70 cents, to 52.40 dollars a barrel.
Although Syria has limited oil production, its location and alliances with big oil producers in the region mean any escalation of the conflict has the potential to increase supply-side fears.

India's foreign exchange surges to 369.95 billion US dollars.
India's foreign exchange surged by a whopping 2.02 billion US dollars to 369.95 billion US dollars, in the week that ended on 31st of March 2017.
A RBI press release has informed that foreign currency assets, a major part of the overall reserves rose by 2.08 billion US dollars to 346.32 billion US dollars.
In the previous week too, the reserves had shot up by 1.15 billion US dollars to 367.93 billion US dollars. Gold reserves, on the other hand moved down by 45 million US dollars to 19.87 billion US dollars.
India's special drawing rights with the International Monetary Fund also fell 5.1 million US dollars to 1.45 billion US dollars, while the country's reserve position too dropped by 10.7 million US dollars to USD 2.32 billion US dollars.

April 10

Flipkart Buys eBay India, Closes $1.4 billion Funding Round From Tencent, Microsoft, eBay.
India's largest e-commerce player, Flipkart, appears to have struck two deals in one shot, buying EBay's India business, and closing a $1.4 billion fund-raising round from Tencent, eBay and Microsoft.
In exchange for an equity stake in Flipkart, eBay has agreed to make a $500 million cash investment in and sell its eBay.in business to Flipkart.
EBay.in will continue to operate as a separate entity from Flipkart and the two companies plan to tap in each other's inventory to expand sales, giving Flipkart customers and sellers access to eBay's global marketplace.
EBay India began operations in India in 2005.

Home-grown PE firm True North acquires Religare Health Insurance for Rs. 1,300 crore.
Religare Enterprises Ltd (REL), promoted by Malvinder and Shivinder Singh, is selling its entire 80 per cent stake in Religare Health Insurance Co (RHI) to a consortium of investors led by private equity firm True North.
The deal, which values the health insurance firm at Rs. 1,300 crore, will help bolster the net worth of publicly listed REL's non-banking finance arm Religare Finvest Limited (RFL). Some of the proceeds will be used to repay REL's debt.
The consortium includes domestic investors such as Gaurav Dalmia and Faering Capital. "Since commercial launch in July 2012, RHI has reported steady progress and emerged as a leading standalone health insurer in India'', REL and True North.
State-owned Corporation Bank and Union Bank of India own 5 per cent each in RHI while the management has 10 per cent in the form of employee stock options.

April 11

India, Australia sign 6 MoUs.
India and Australia signed six memorandums of understanding (MoUs), including on cooperation in fighting international terrorism and on civil aviation security, following delegation-level bilateral talks headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull.
One MoU was signed on cooperation in fighting international terrorism and organised crime. A second MoU was signed on promotion and development of cooperation in civil aviation security.
A third MoU was signed on cooperation in the field of environment, climate and wildlife. Another MoU was signed on cooperation in the field of sports.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) signed an MoU with Geoscience Australia on implementation arrangement on cooperation in earth observation and satellite navigation. A sixth MoU was signed on cooperation in the field of health and medicine.

CBDT allots PAN and TAN in one day.
To further enhance ease of doing business, the income tax department has tied up with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) to issue Permanent Account Number (PAN) and Tax Deduction Account Number (TAN) in one day.
Applicant companies submit a common application form SPICe (INC 32) on the MCA portal and once the data of incorporation is sent to the Central Board of Direct Taxes by MCA, the PAN and TAN are issued immediately without any further intervention from the applicant.
The CBDT has also introduced the Electronic PAN Card (E-PAN) which is sent by e-mail, in addition to issue of the physical PAN Card, to all applicants including individuals where PAN is allotted.
The move is expected to significantly improve India's ranking in the Ease of Doing Business Study of the World Bank by reducing the number of processes of registration for companies as well as making it simpler to set up businesses.

Centre releases Rs. 12,230 crore to States for MGNREGA.
The Centre has released Rs. 23,443 crore to the states under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) as part of the it's early spending push. Funds released would be used to undertake priority work under water conservation measures.
The amount released also includes all pending liabilities as on March 31, 2017. The government had allocated Rs. 48,000 crore to MGNREGS in this year's budget. It has also declared drought in eight states, allowing them to offer 50 days of extra manual work under MGNREGS in 2017-18.
All states have been advised to ensure that such works are taken up wherever required with appropriate technical and scientific scrutiny. States have also been asked to ensure that 65 per cent expenditure under MGNREGS is on Natural Resource Management activities.

April 12

Petrol, diesel prices to be revised daily in 5 cities from May 1: Sources.
India's state-owned fuel retailers plan to implement daily revision of fuel price in five cities from May 1 ahead of a nationwide rollout of the scheme.
To begin with, daily revision of fuel prices will be implemented in Puducherry and Vizag in southern India, Udaipur in the West, Jamshedpur in the East and Chandigarh in the North.
State refiners - Indian Oil Corp (IOC), Bharat Petroleum Corp (BPCL) and Hindustan Petroleum Corp (HPCL) - operate 90 per cent of the retail outlets in the country. The three have upto 200 fuel stations in the five cities.
The roll out of "daily dynamic pricing" in five cities will help them identify the problems ahead of a nationwide rollout of the scheme later this year.

India, Georgia exploring options for free trade agreement.
India and Georgia are exploring the option to negotiate a comprehensive free trade agreement to promote bilateral economic ties. Both the countries have decided to set up a group to conduct a joint feasibility study on the free trade agreement (FTA).
A "joint statement" to launch the study on the FTA was signed by the Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia Giorgi Gakharia and Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
The joint feasibility study group consists of the officials of the two countries. The purpose of establishing the group is to provide an opportunity for more in-depth and systematic examination of potential FTA.
It would discuss the possible scope of a potential pact and also analyse the sensitiveness of specific sectors, while recommending possible ways to address them.

Nokia joins hands with Airtel and BSNL to bring 5G network to India.
Nokia is not only set to make a comeback in the smartphone market with its 3310, Nokia 3 and 5, the Finnish giant is also planning to bring 5G network in India.
Nokia has signed a memorandum of understandings (MoUs) with Indian telecom giants Airtel and BSNL. Nokia during the Mobile World Congress 2017 had stated that it would expand their collaborative technology partnership to work on 5G technology standard and management of connected devices.
This was only an introductory phase as the commercial roll out of the 5G connectivity is expected to take place during 2019-2020. Nokia is also setting up an experience centre in Bengaluru to try to better understand the stakeholder requirements for 5G in India.
After 4G, the future is 5G and IoT, which is useful in the concept such as smart cities... The MoU will help BSNL to draw a framework for transition from the current network to futuristic 5G network.

April 13

Cisco launches 5th global cyber range lab in Gurugram.
US-based tech giant Cisco launched its 5th global cyber range lab with an aim to train Indian firms and government agencies on real-world cyber attacks.
The Cisco cyber range lab aims to provide highly specialised technical training workshops to help cyber security professionals build the skills...to combat new-age threats.
The facility was inaugurated by National Cyber Security Coordinator Gulshan Rai. Cisco has four other such labs in Australia. An effective implementation of cyber security requires IT infrastructure and technical expertise for which the industry should play a responsible role.
Cisco will also launch a Security Operations Centre (SOC) in Pune - its 4th after the US, Poland and Japan - in the next few months to provide a broad range of services, including monitoring of threats and its end-to-end management for enterprise needs. It will be linked to other Cisco SOCs across the world.
These centres are part of Ciscos USD 100 million investment commitment to India.

Aditya Birla Nuvo shareholders approve merger with Grasim Ind.
Aditya Birla Nuvo shareholders have approved the proposal to merge with its group company Grasim Industries. Investors voted on the proposal at the National Company Law Tribunal convened meeting.
The resolution was approved by about 99 per cent of minority shareholders. Among the institutional investors, 76 per cent voted in favour, while the remaining opposed the proposal. About 157 members, including institutional investors owning 4,992,846 shares accounting for 4.45 per cent of vote casted, were against the merger proposal.
Overall, the proposal was passed with 96 per cent of shareholders, including the promoter, voting in favour of the resolution.
The proposal will simplify group cross-holdings and deliver value from a diverse range of businesses to shareholders.

eNAM transacts record 15,000 crore business in one year.
The national agriculture market- eNAM has transacted a record 15 thousand crore rupees business in one year. In April last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched National Agriculture Market portal eNAM to connect e-mandis in several States.

In last 6 months eNAM recorded very good growth and more than 160 markets were added in the portal. Currently 417 markets are working in 13 states. In coming time government will add more markets in eNAM.
Government targets to double the income of farmers by 2022 and for this government are improving the marketing policy and the Agriculture market.

April 14

10 countries whose GDP is equal to that of an Indian state.
India's over $2 trillion economy is the world’s fastest growing. In fact the GDP of several Indian states is equal to that some countries. Here’s a look at 10 states with the highest GDPs and the country their economy matches
There are Ten Indian States whose Gross Domestic Product (GDP) matches with that of countries. The most populous state in the country Uttar Pradesh has a GDP of $553 billion, which is similar to Algeria. Tamil Nadu's GDP is similar to that of the United Arab Emirates while Maharashtra's GDP of $961 billion is similar to that of Poland.

India's exports grow by 27.6 per cent in March.
India's exports grew by 27 point 6 per cent to 29 point 23 billion dollars in March this year as compared to same period in last year. It grew on account of robust performance by sectors like petroleum, textiles, engineering goods and gems and jewellery.
For the full fiscal 2016-17, exports witnessed a growth of 4.71 per cent at 274.64 billion dollar against 262.3 billion in 2015-16.
According to Commerce and Industry Ministry, imports too jumped 45.25 per cent to 39.66 billion dollar last month from 27.3 billion in March 2016. a huge spike in gold imports pushed the trade deficit to 10.43 billion dollar during the month under review from 4.4 billion dollar a year ago.
This is an indication of the robust growth of the Indian Economy an indication that the trend in growing export may continue and drive economic growth.

I-T CPC in Bengaluru gets new pin code for taxpayers benefit.
Taxpayers wanting to send their paper ITR acknowledgement forms or documents related to refunds and others to the I-T departments CPC in Bengaluru can now send it to a "unique" pin code.
The Department of Post has allotted the pin code to the Central Processing Centre (CPC) to ensure that letters and emails sent by taxpayers and assessees are not lost and reach the centre without delay.
The CPC is the central database centre of the department which receives all Income Tax Returns (ITRs), both e-filed and sent through post, and processes them for issuance of refunds and also deals with other tax related documents of a taxpayer.
The new pin code is-560500-while the CPC earlier used to sport the old pin code of-560100. The older pin code was marked for the entire Electronic City area in Bengaluru, where the CPC facility is based.
There used to be grievances where taxpayers complained that they have sent their ITR-V (acknowledgement for ITR filing) through post to the CPC but it did not reach the centre. Certain other documents sought by the centre from an assessee to ensure timely refunds also used to get lost or never reach.

Cabinet approves listing of 11 CPSEs on stock exchanges.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved listing of 11 Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs), including Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation, on stock exchanges.
The other CPSEs that will be listed are the Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd, IRCON International Ltd, Indian Railway Finance Corporation (IRFC) Ltd, RITES (earlier known as Rail India Technical and Economic Service), Bharat Dynamics Ltd (BDL), Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE), Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Ltd (MDSL), North Eastern Electric Power Corporation (NEEPCO), Mishra Dhatu Nigam Ltd. (MIDHANI) and MSTC Ltd.
Listing of CPSEs will be through public offer of shares up to 25 per cent of government's shareholding, which may include offer of fresh shares for raising of resources from market.
The CCEA has also approved reservation of shares for the eligible employees of 11 CPSEs in accordance with the extant provisions of Sebi regulations.


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