|B U S I N E S S||
Wednesday, July 7, 1999
|Helicopter service for tourists,
NEW DELHI, July 6 Indian Airlines will soon complete the techno-economic evaluation for replacing its aged fleet of aircraft, Civil Aviation Minister Ananth Kumar said today.
MTNL to get phone charges with bills
NEW DELHI, July 6 Despite a stay by the Telecom Regulatory Authority, Mahanagar Telephone Nigam will implement its proposed scheme of granting new telephones with an Internet connection without first charging registration fee of Rs 3000.
Aptech to enter 22 more countries
Pioneer to pay 35 pc
net profit declines
GIC donate Rs 14 crore
pact to produce fabric filters
Lunar Diamonds in the dock
Helicopter service for tourists, industry
NEW DELHI, July 6 (PTI) Indian Airlines will soon complete the techno-economic evaluation for replacing its aged fleet of aircraft, Civil Aviation Minister Ananth Kumar said today.
Techno-economic evaluation is now on and we expect it to be completed soon, Kumar told mediapersons after launching the Deccan Aviation helicopter charter service here.
Replying to questions on replacement of IAs fleet of Boeing and Airbus aircraft, he said: Any airline would go in for a comprehensive replacement of its fleet.
On IAs plan to buy French-made 50-seater ATR-42-500s, Kumar said the IA Board had decided to acquire this aircraft a year ago and later made representations before the Public Investment Board.
Denying that the Civil Aviation Ministry was pressurising the IA to buy this plane, he said the Ministry only acted as a guardian and there was no controversy over the issue.
Earlier addressing the function, Kumar said it was imperative that more aircraft of different sizes were acquired to cater to the hinterland.
Commerce Minister Ramakrishna Hegde said helicopter tourism could become a profitable venture with the country having a rich and diverse cultural and natural heritage.
US Ambassador Richard F. Celeste, also present on the occasion, said the sale of American aircraft and spare parts formed the third largest segment of the US exports to India.
Capt G.R. Gopinath, Managing Director of Deccan Aviation, which has bases in Bangalore and Hyderabad, sought comprehensive guidelines on rules, routes and facilities for chopper operations which was non-existent at the moment.
The company, having a
fleet of six helicopters, will charter them for corporate
houses and tourists, offering heli-tourism
packages from Delhi to the Himalayas, Taj Mahal and
the deserts of Rajasthan.
Citibank launches Internet
NEW DELHI, July 6 Citibank today announced the launch of Internet banking and debit facility.These are in addition to the existing array of products which include multi-deposits, auto sweep facility, investment services and unfixed deposits.
While Internet banking will enable bank customers anywhere in the world on their Citibanking account, the debit facility will enable the customers to access their bank accounts from merchant establishments and pay for a wide range of goods and services.
Internet banking will also be available to NRI clients and they would be able to use debit cards in India.
Citibanks internet banking, branded as CitiDirect and available at www.citibank.com/India will enable customers to view and print account balances and statements, order cheque books, stop payment on a cheque, pay credit card and utility payments, get latest deposit rates, execute account to account transfer and even order drafts.
The debit card is a
convenient way to make purchases from the bank account.
Accepted in various merchant locations in Mumbai, New
Delhi and Bangalore, it allows customers to enjoy
interest on their account till the time the funds are
MTNL to get phone charges with bills
NEW DELHI, July 6 (PTI) Despite a stay by the Telecom Regulatory Authority (TRAI), Mahanagar Telephone Nigam (MTNL) will implement its proposed scheme of granting new telephones with an Internet connection without first charging registration fee of Rs 3000.
The scheme is only about deferment of a payment. Instead of charging Rs 3,000 at the time of registration, MTNL will collect the amount at the time of payment of the first bill, sources said.
TRAI had asked MTNL to keep its plan to provide new telephones with an Internet connection in abeyance till a final decision is taken.
Normally the first bill comes within one to three months depending upon the billing cycle. MTNL has worked out a plan to serve the first bill within a fortnight of installation of a telephone connection with fixed component of security deposit and installation charges totalling Rs 3,080.
Aptech to enter 22 more countries
NEW DELHI, July 6 (PTI) Aptech today announced initiatives for expanding its computer education to 22 more countries aiming to become the global leader in computer education by 2002.
The companys international network which has 25 centres spread over 18 countries by the close of 1999 will have 100 centres in 40 countries in the next two years, Chief Executive Officer of the company Ganesh Natarajan told reporters here today.
He said Aptech which has over 1,200 centres in India would continue to grow in the same lines of last two years whereby it achieved 24 per cent growth by touching Rs 209 crore.
Aptech estimated the addressable market for career education to be over a $ 1 billion by 2002 and the company planned to capture at least 20 per cent it, he said.
He said the company has chosen computer education as a goal for global leadership and has finalised alliances with major players in university, technology and e-commerce segments to ensure quality of programmes.
India gets $ 386m World Bank loan
NEW DELHI, July 6 (PTI) India today secured the first major $ 386 million World Bank loan after the economic sanctions imposed following the Pokhran nuclear tests in May last year.
Agreements were signed today for a $ 300 million loan for an integrated women and child development project in five States and a $ 86 million loan for the Rajasthan district primary education project.
The agreements were signed here by Edwin Lim, Country Director of the World Bank and Additional Secretary in Finance Ministry V. Govindrajan.
A senior official in the Finance Ministry told PTI that these were the first World Bank loan agreements to be signed since economic sanctions were imposed on India after the nuclear tests in May last.
The $ 300 million women and child development project will be the third to be implemented in the country and taken up in the States of Kerala, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh.
The total cost of the project is $ 422.3 million of which $ 122.3 million will be contributed by the Central and State Governments.
Kothari Pioneer to pay 35 pc
MUMABI, July 6 (PTI) Kothari Pioneer Mutual Fund today declared a 35 per cent tax free dividend on its bluechip fund, the highest ever by any mutual fund in India.
The countrys first private sector mutual fund has over 5-1/2 years, since inception, delivered an annualised return of 25.18 per cent, Chief Executive of Kothari Pioneer Asset Management Company (AMC), Vivek Reddy said, adding the dividend is a reflection of the performance weve shown.
PSB net profit declines
NEW DELHI, July 6 (UNI) Punjab and Sind Bank reported a decline in its net profit as the yield to maturity benefit accrued to it last was not available to the bank in 1998-99.
The banks net profit declined to Rs 60 crore in 1998-99 from Rs 65.09 crore in the previous year. However, the bank managed to contain its non-performing assets despite a difficult year for the industry and business.
While the banks gross NPA was reduced to 16.5 per cent from 19.5 per cent, the net NPA was marginally down to 10.40 per cent from 10.84 per cent. Special thrust on recovery in Delhi, Calcutta and Mumbai is paying dividend, PSB Chairman S.S. Kohli told UNI.
Mr Kohli said net NPAs would be further reduced to 8.5 per cent in the current financial year.
He attributed the decline in the net profit in 1998-99 to the non-accrual of Y.T.M. of Rs 20 crore which was available in the previous year and Rs 3 crore wage revision impact provided for in the balance sheet.
However, the bank has declared a dividend of Rs 5 crore after a gap of 10 years. Mr Kohli handed over the dividend cheque to Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha.
The bank recorded a
growth of 34 per cent in its business turnover which has
gone up to Rs 14000 crore. The aggregate deposits
increased by 24.8 per cent and touched Rs 9496 crore and
advances witnessed a rise of 25.06 per cent and reached
the Rs 4398 crore mark.
LIC, GIC donate Rs 14 crore
NEW DELHI, July 6 (PTI) Insurance companies today contributed over Rs 14 crore to the National Defence Fund.
The cheques were presented to Finance Minister, Yashwant Sinha by LIC Chairman G. Krishnamurthy and GIC Chairman D. Sengupta here.
While LIC contributed Rs 5 crore, the GIC and its four subsidiaries National Insurance Company Limited, New India Assurance Company Ltd, Oriental Insurance Company Ltd and United India Insurance Company Ltd contributed Rs 1 crore each.
The LIC and GIC chairmen also presented a cheque of Rs 2.2 crore and Rs 1.2 lakh respectively which were part payment of contribution of one day salary of the company employees and agents.
Chairman and Managing
Director of New India Assurance, S.K. Kanwar, Chairman of
United India Insurance, K.N. Bhandari and Chairman of
National Insurance, A.N. Podar presented cheques of their
employees contribution of one days salary worth Rs
60 lakh, Rs 45 lakh and Rs 20 lakh respectively to Mr
BHEL pact to produce fabric filters
NEW DELHI, July 6 (PTI) Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) today inked an agreement for technical collaboration with a leading German company to manufacture state-of-the-art pollution control equipment for industries and power stations.
Called Fabric filters, the equipment can collect very fine particulate matter from flue gases that are released into the atmosphere, a BHEL release said.
With the use of these filters in hot gas treatment systems, the dust content of clean gas can be reduced to 10 mg/cubic nm as against emission norms of 50 mg/cubic nm.
They find extensive
application not only in different types of boilers
(stoker fired, pulverised coal fired and fluidised bed
combustion), but were also used in the cement and
fertiliser industries, and metallurgical plants.
Lunar Diamonds in the dock
NEW DELHI, July 6 (UNI) The BIFR has directed for a special investigative audit into the accounts for Lunar Diamonds Limited on allegations by banks and financial institutions that the accounts have inappropriately shown huge losses.
Appointing IDBI as the operating agency, the BIFR laid down July 25 as the deadline for the inquiry report.
The banks and FIs sought
a critical examination of the companys claim of
having incurred Rs 35 crore loss during the extended
financial year of 1996-97 as they suspect it has been due
to lower capacity utilisation, provision of bad debts
amounting to Rs 7.54 crore and an increase in interest
Gold Std Rs 4100
Gold 22-Ct Rs 3950
Silver Ready Rs 7950
Silver delivery Rs 7960
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