The Election Commission today announced that the Lok Sabha election will be held in 7 phases. The elections will start on April 11 and continue till May 19. The counting will be held on May 23. Total numbers of voters are expected to be around 90 crore of which 1.5 crore voters are in the age group of 18-19 years.
The government's FY19 disinvestment proceeds have reached Rs 57,523.32 crore following its decision to sell its entire stake in the Dredging Corporation for Rs 1,050 crore. The government sold 73.44% holding in the company at Rs 510 a share, a premium of 17% over Friday's closing price. The government has targeted disinvestment proceeds of Rs 80,000 crore for the current fiscal.
Indian Institute of Technology-Madras (IIT-M) in collaboration with Teerthaa, a sustainable technology company, will develop a device that can generate 4 to 5 litres of potable water per day from atmospheric air. Called ‘Nero’, the cost efficient device will be offered to the masses at affordable prices. The developed product will have negligible operating costs as its power source will be solar thermal energy and have minimal maintenance cost as there are no moving parts involved in the equipment.
A 2018 study by Swiss investment bank UBS had said that an average employee in Mumbai works 3,315 hours a year, the highest in the world. The report noted that an employee sitting around or staying longer at the workplace is equated with being more productive. Multiple labour laws mandate companies to pay overtime if an employee works beyond 9 hours a day. However, only 20% of companies adhere to this regulation.
Chinese Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen said on March 9 said that China and the United States are working relentlessly to achieve a trade deal that suits the interests of both sides. Wang said he was optimistic about negotiations with the US administration. Trump recently deferred imposing tariff hikes on Chinese imports worth $200 billion on the back of advance deal talks. The increased tariffs were scheduled to kick in from March 2.
US President Donald Trump said that he would sign a trade deal with China only if the deal benefitted the US. However, he expressed confidence in reaching a conclusive trade pact with China. The US and China are locked in a trade war since Trump hiked import tariff up to 25% on $250 billion of Chinese goods in March last year. China, the world's second largest economy after the US, retaliated with tariffs on $110 billion of American goods.
Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said 7 crore free LPG connections have been provided in the last 34 months under the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY). The PMUY scheme was launched on May 1, 2016, with a target to provide 5 crore free LPG connections to women member of poor households by March 2019. Uttar Pradesh has been the biggest beneficiary of the scheme with 1.26 crore connections followed by 78 lakh in West Bengal and 77.51 lakh in Bihar.
India's most wanted and the prime accused in the Rs 14,000 crore Punjab National Bank scam, Nirav Modi, has reportedly been seen in London. A video released by a British daily shows Nirav Modi living in a luxurious 3-bedroom apartment near Oxford Street. Modi has also reportedly started a new diamond business in Soho. A senior government official said all necessary steps are being taken to extradite Nirav Modi.
The country’s foreign exchange reserves increased by $2.599 billion in the week ended March 1 to cross the $400 billion mark. The forex reserves stood at $401.776 billion in the reporting week. In the previous week, the reserves had risen by $944.7 million to $399.217 billion. In the reporting week, foreign currency assets (FCA), a major component of the overall forex reserves, swelled by $2.061 billion to $374.060 billion.
On this International Women’s day, we take you through the three richest women in the country and who have recently featured in Forbes’ billionaire list of 2019. The richest woman in India is Savitri Jindal, chairperson of the Jindal group, with an estimated net worth of $6.5 billion. Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, founder promoter of India’s largest biopharmaceutical firm Biocon is the country’s second richest woman. Smita Crishna Godrej, third generation heiress of the Godrej empire with an estimated net worth of $2.8 billion is the third richest Indian woman.
Grant of patents during April to December period of current fiscal FY19 rose 12% to 10,036 as against the 8,940 patents granted in the year-ago nine-month period. The commerce and industry ministry has taken various measures to streamline the patent examination process including an increase in manpower and making the process paperless. Patent is a legal right granted by a country under which the holder has exclusive rights on the product for 20 years. It prohibits other individual and company from manufacturing, using, and selling of the same item.
Yoga guru Baba Ramdev has called for a complete boycott of HUL and its products after the latter’s Brooke Bond ad in Kumbh Mela drew severe criticism for portraying the ageing parent and child relationship in a bad light. The concerned ad concludes with a statement — “At this holy gathering [Kumbh Mela], many elderly are abandoned by their families.” The ad was posted with the hashtag ‘apno ko apnao’. Ramdev compared HUL with the East India Company and accused the FMCG major of making the country economically & ideologically poor.
BSNL has announced, through its Twitter account, it will credit cashback of 25% to the account of broadband customers if they buy an annual plan. The 25% cashback offer was launched in December last year with December 31 as the last date. BSNL has now extended the validity of the offer until March 31. The existing BSNL broadband customers (including landline and Bharat Fibre subscribers) will also be eligible for 25% cashback on the payment of annual plans. The offer is eligible in all circles except Delhi and Mumbai where the company does operate its services.
The BSE Brokers Forum (BBF) and Association of National Exchanges of Members of India (ANMI) along with the BSE have contributed Rs 54.30 lakh towards ‘Bharat Ke Veer’ Corpus Fund. The employees of the BSE and its group companies have also contributed their one-day salary for this cause. Bharat Ke Veer is a fund-raising initiative by the Ministry of Home Affairs on behalf of members of the Indian Armed Forces. It allows donations of up to Rs 15 lakhs to an individual's account and donations to the "Bharat Ke Veer" corpus.
Water treatment company VA Tech WABAG has bagged a project worth Rs 575 crore, under the National Mission for Clean Ganga Scheme in West Bengal. The scope of the project includes design, builds, rehabilitate and operate sewage treatment facilities and associated infrastructure in Kolkata. The contract from Kolkata Municipal Development Authority (KMDA), includes engineering, supply and construction of sewage treatment plants, renovation and up-gradation of the existing sewage treatment plants.