|B U S I N E S S||
Sunday, September 19, 1999
|Ford unveils Ikon
CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 Ford Indias new mid-size car Ikon was unveiled by Mr John Fink, company Vice-President, here today.
Specifications for rice procurement
NEW DELHI, Sept 18 The Centre today finalised specifications for rice and other kharif coarse grains to be procured for the Central pool during the kharif season 1999-2000.
24-year term for Hoffland director
NEW DELHI, Sept 18 The Director-cum-Chairman of the Hoffland Company Limited has been sentenced to 24 years of imprisonment.
Internet users in India
SBI crosses Rs 1000 crore mark in
From b-business to e-business
Jalandhars Kukkad vs
Make hill tourism in north
Government to frame new auto
CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 Ford Indias new mid-size car Ikon, unveiled by Mr John Fink, company Vice-President, here today, will take on Maruti Udyogs Esteem, Fiats Sienna and Hyundais Accent.
Though the car price is believed to be between Rs 4.5 lakh and Rs 7 lakh, Mr Fink said the actual price would be announced in October. It seems the company is waiting for the Accent price announcement.
Addressing a press conference, Mr Fink said the company targets to sell 20,000 units of the car in the current year.
The car was displayed in the CII complex here by Fords two dealers in this region Bhagat Ford of Ludhiana and Excel Automotives of Chandigarh.
Ford plans to double its marketing network by having 44 dealer outlets by the year-end. The company, which will shortly appoint dealers in Jalandhar and Ludhiana, has invested Rs 1,700 crore at its plant near Chennai which has a capacity of manufacturing one lakh cars a year.
The car is available in both petrol and diesel versions. Ikon 1.62 X1 Rocam petrol version has 1600 cc engine, while Ikon 1.8 Endura diesel version is 1800 cc. Both models have four cylinders, eight valves and five speed manual transmission.
Mr Fink claimed that the car is specially designed for Indian road conditions. It is a three box car and a derivative of Ford Fiesta platform.
for rice procurement
NEW DELHI, Sept 18 The Centre today finalised specifications for rice and other kharif coarse grains to be procured for the Central pool during the kharif season 1999-2000.
It has been decided that rice with maximum limit of 25 per cent broken grains( without small broken), damaged grains up to 2 per cent in raw rice and 4 per cent in par boiled rice, discoloured grains up to 3 per cent in raw rice and 5 per cent in par boiled rice can be procured.
The maximum limit of moisture , beyond 14 and upto 15 per cent there will be full value cut, an official release said. These specifications have been laid down in keeping with the interest of the PDS consumers.
Kharif procurement has
commenced in Punjab and Haryana from September 16, while
in other States Procuring will start from October 1. The
minimum support price for paddy has been fixed at Rs 490
per quintal for common rice and Rs 520 per quintal for
grade A rice for the marketing season 1999-2000 as
against Rs 440 and Rs 470 per quintal respectively,
during the kharif marketing season 1998-99.
term for Hoffland director
NEW DELHI, Sept 18 The Company Law Board has sentenced the Director-cum-Chairman of Hoffland Company Limited, Brij Bhushan Sharma to imprisonment for 24 years on the charges of cheating. A total of 24 cases of cheating were registered against him, a press statement said.
Hoffland Finance Company
had invited deposits from public and offered interest
from 27 per cent to 36 per cent which induced a large
number of people including retired Army officers. A total
of Rs 6 crore were deposited by the people. The CLB
directed Brij Bhushan to pay the amount to the victims
but he failed to comply with the order of the CLB, the
MUMBAI, Sept 18 (PTI) The number of Internet users in India is growing rapidly and in the next two years they can jump up to five million from the current one million, according to Mr Tom Freston, Chairman and CEO, MTV network.
This is a very encouraging level of interest in the new medium, particularly in a country where most people do not have a telephone, Freston said at a programme organised by MTV and Planet M of The Times of India group here yesterday.
He said with 20 million cable households and a burgeoning cell phone market, there may soon be new and different ways for Indians to access the Internet.
To cater to the huge number of netizens, the popular music channel will launch its Indian Website mtvasia.com, next spring on the lines of its existing mtvasia.com, which it brings out in a joint venture with Tricast, produced from Singapore.
crosses Rs 1000 crore mark in SSI advances
CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 The State Bank of India, Chandigarh Circle, has crossed a level of Rs 1000 crore in SSI advances and expect to cross 1300 crore by March 2000, said Mr R.C. Agrawala, Chief General Manager of the circle at a customer relation programme organised by the bank here today.
The meeting was attended by Mr Prabhakar Sharma, Chief General Manager of the Circle and Mr T.S. Bhattacharya, General Manager (Commercial).
The CGM of the bank assured the gathering of industrialists (both customers and non customers) of Mohali and Chandigarh that SBI will go all out to help the industries by taking quick credit decisions and offering loans at the cheapest rate.
Indian Rayon has recorded a lower turnover of Rs 450.68 crore for the first five months of the current financial year as against Rs 458.67 crore in the comparative period of the previous year.
Production of Viscose Filament Yarn (VFY) stood reduced during the period under review at 5,277 MT as against 6,091 MT, while sales stood at 5,534 MT as against 5,814 MT in the previous corresponding period, the company said in a statement here.
The availability of cheaper Polyester filament yarn and alternative products was the major reason for the slump in VFY, it said.
The shareholders of the Aditya Birla group company, at the annual general meeting at Verawal in Gujarat today, approved the companys proposal to buyback upto 25 per cent of the paid-up capital and its decision to sell the sea-water magnesia business.
Indian Rayon shareholders also authorised the Board of Directors to buyback equity at a price not exceeding Rs 90 per share and the board would meet again on September 20 to decide on the final price.
Mr N.R. Narayana Murthy, Chairman and Chief operating officer of Infoys Technologies Ltd has been presented with the electronics man of the year award by the Electronic Component Industry Association (ELCINA) for his outstanding contribution in elevating the Indian electronics industry in the global circuit.
Tata Infotech bagged the ELCINA award for exporting, grabbing a major chunk of the export to the US, UK, West Asian and other European Nations. Faridabad-based Usha India Ltd. won the second prize for export of discrete semiconductors to Korea, Hong Kong, Poland, Australia, US and Taiwan.
Templeton Mutual Fund has declared a 5 per cent dividend on its India Income Fund and 2.5 per cent dividend on its Government Securities Fund for the period ended September 15, 1999.
b-business to e-business
IN the conventional business terms which can be called b-business (bania business) there is a classic supply chain, in which a manufacturer makes a product and sells it to the purchaser in the common marketplace, delivers it and waits to repeat the cycle. This concept is fast vacillating into global networks, or what some call a networked economy as the Internet transforms supply chain into the new demand chain, in which the supplier senses the needs of the customer and responds to them. After the order is filled, the supplier continues to monitor the satisfaction of the client and can update the supply chain on an ongoing basis.
E-business is the future buzzword which is a marketplace where business is done using the Internet/Internet technologies and network computing, to achieve,
streamlining of internal business process strategies and relationships with external and international corporates.
the buying and selling of goods, services and information conveniently with choices never available before.
connection of extended teams by linking communities thematically and not geographically or spatially.
reaching existing and new customers and making the business process far more efficient and cost-effective by cutting inventory cost and eliminating paper based transactions.
building of loyalty through customer service.
increase in top line and bottom line.
In other words, e-business is what happens when you connect your critical business systems directly to your critical constituencies namely customers, employees, vendors and suppliers via intranets, extranets and over the Internet.
Todays economy is a global village with about 60 million people already using the Internet, a concept developed 30 years ago, and it is estimated that this number is going to swell to 500 million before long, perhaps 1 billion.
In 1997 world-wide e-business was $ 10.6b which increased to $ 80b in 1998. By 2001 and 2003 this figure is expected to reach $ 223b and $ 3.2 trillion.
E-business is changing our lifestyle, the way we teach our children, the way we communicate and transact business and the way we make payments, Cyber shopping allows you to order what you want, when you want locally or globally and enables payment cardholders to make secure on-line purchases from home, workplace, Internet kiosks or any other on-line access point and in the process creating hyper growth of wealth.
Although e-business is
the order of the day in western countries, it is still in
a state of infancy in India because of excessive hardware
costs involved to access the Internet. However, with the
expected new tariff of Telecom Regulatory Authority of
India (TRAI) bringing down the monthly rental from Rs 600
to Rs 475 and call charge from Rs 6 to Rs 4 with incoming
calls free w.e.f. 1-11-99, the network of mobile phones
would expand considerably and provide a good alternative
in the from of mobile business or m-business, till such
time we catch with e-business.
Jalandhars Kukkad vs Kentucky chicken
NEW DELHI, Sept 18 (PTI) Kukkad Jalandhari is giving Kentucky Fried Chicken a run for its money and Macchi Amritsari is fast replacing good old Bengali Maccher Jhol as the fish lovers favourite dish, if the crowds thronging the ongoing Punjabi food festival here is any indicator.
Organised as part of the Explore India Year at the ITDC-run Kanishka Hotels Dilkusha restaurant in the capital, the ten-day event is attracting not only sizeable non-Punjabi crowd, but also a good chunk of foreigners.
The rural Punjabi ambience permeates the venue with patangs (kites) hanging down from the ceiling, waiters dressed in traditional attire kurta, jooti et al and live pulsating music by Ashok Khullar and Vinita Nautiyal, specially flown in from the land of five rivers.
And as the buffet dinner unfolds the essence and taste of Punjab, village belles attired in their traditional fineries charm you with their zestful gidda and the naughty tappe song and dance sequences.
The food stalls named Bhaiye di keema and Tikke da dhaba offer not only the delectable Kukkad Jalandhari, Macchi Amritsari and Keema Kaleji but also the ever popular Makki di roti, Sarson da saag and dhaba daal.
If jal jeera lifted straight from an earthen pot warms you up for the gastronomical delight ahead, the desserts including the dry fruit packed pinni and malpua with rabri provide a grand finale to the food extravaganza.
hill tourism in north attractive
CHANDIGARH, Sept 18 At the annual general meeting of the Hotel & Restaurant Association of Northern India (HRANI) at New Delhi members expressed deep concern on the falling occupancy of hotels. Stress was laid on making hill tourism of northern region more attractive. The importance of conserving heritage and maintenance of healthy ecology for promotion of international tourism was also discussed. The membership has touched four figure mark and is the highest in any hospitality body in the country. The areas of Banaras and Gorakhpur districts have been merged in Northern India which, until recent times, were part of East India Hotel and Restaurant Association.
At the meeting Mr B.K. Gupta was re-elected the President of association. Mr Rajinder Kumar also retains his position as the Hony Secy whereas Mr Ajit Butail becomes the Vice-President. Mr Man Mohan Singh, who represents Chandigarh region was unanimously elected as the Joint Secretary of the Association. HRANI shall be organising various events at Chandigarh in its golden jubilee year.
The hotels and
restaurants in Chandigarh are facing with a grim
situation wherein unauthorised guest houses are palming
off the major share of their business. This has resulted
in the occupancy rate of hotels sliding to an all time
low. This problem is further compounded by the fact that,
most of the tour operators on their way to Himachal
generally, bye-pass Chandigarh which could otherwise
offer handsome business to the hotel industry to this
NEW DELHI, Sept 18 (PTI) The Government would frame a long-term automobile policy to give predictability to investments in the sector, Industry Secretary Ajit Kumar said today.
The Industry Ministry does not have necessary expertise for formulating a long-term policy that will have a life span of 10 to 15 years. So we would like to get inputs from industry associations for putting the policy in place, he said addressing the first annual session of the society of the Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), here.
He also asked SIAM to submit a paper that would cover the issues to be dealt with in the long-term policy.
Kumar allayed fears of the Indian industry about the fallout of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) regime where the Indian market would be fully opened up for imports and said the WTO will also offer newer markets to the country.
The Eicher group Chairman and Chief Executive Subodh Bhargava said the Government should do away with ad-hoc changes in policies and refrain from knee-jerk reactions as the entrepreneurial decision in the high investment auto sector was based on the assumption that the policies would remain stable.
Frequent public interest litigation's and judgements by court also threw the auto sector off gear.
He said the automobile sector was likely to cross the five million units sales mark in the current fiscal for the first time mainly due to the spurt in demand in last few months.
He said the sector had become competitive after the entry of many global players, adding that it attracted the largest foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows into the country.
Kumar said the consumers benefited from the increased competition by way of greater variety in choice.
The Budget process for the fiscal year 2000-2001 has already started and the fiscal measures taken has to balance both industrys needs and needs of revenue generation.
SIAM President Venu Srinivasan said the Government should not differentiate between diesel and petrol vehicles if they met the pollution standards laid down.
A RESIDENT of Mumbai placed orders for making jewellery worth Rs 32,000 with a jeweller and paid the full amount. She was asked to collect the jewellery after a week. However, on the appointed day when she went to the shop, she was told that it was not ready and that she should come back after a week. It was the same story the next week. After several trips to the jeweller, the consumer contacted a Mumbai-based organisation, Consumer Guidance Society of India (CGSI) for help. The organisations intervention eventually helped her get her jewellery.
Similarly, a railway passenger who found his baggage left in the cloak room at the New Delhi railway station missing, sought the help of CGSI, when he did not receive a positive response from the Railways for three years. The consumer group took up the issue and soon got back the passengers bag, but minus the valuables worth Rs 60,000. The consumer has now been advised to file a case before the consumer court for recovering the amount.
Consumer groups in India have increasingly begun to intervene on behalf of consumers for redress of their grievances. CGSI, which has a complaints committee to handle such cases, received over, 1,000 complaints last year and dealt with issues ranging from time-share holiday packages, banking, investment and insurance to medical negligence, electricity supply, housing and telephones. Similarly, Ahmedabad-based consumer group, Consumer Education and Research Centre has a well-organised complaints handling cell and deals with a large number of complaints pertaining to shares, debentures, refund orders, etc. It also handles complaints pertaining to defective consumer goods, poor after sales service and deficient public utility services. CERC has also over the years taken up a large number of cases pertaining to insurance claims.
When Mr Parmod Motilal Prajapatis colour television set, for example, went out of order within two months of purchase and could not be repaired despite several attempts, Mr Prajapati sought the help of CERC to get a replacement. In response to CERCs letter, the company, however, said it would only replace the main circuit board of the set. CERC in turn pointed out that even after several attempts, the company had failed to rectify the defect within the warranty period and the consumer was therefore entitled to a replacement. The company finally agreed to give a replacement in April 1999. The TV set had been bought in December 1997 and the consumer had contacted CERC in November 1998.
In another case, Mr Chhaganlal Wadia found his 15 month-old washing machine costing Rs 18,200 corroding at several places and soon the adjustable feet for levelling the machine got separated from the main body of the machine. The company refused to give a free replacement on the ground that it was not covered under the guarantee and asked Mr Wadia to pay Rs 1,412 towards replacement of the body. The company eventually agreed to repair the body free of cost following CERCs intervention, but only after reminders from the consumer group.
These examples highlight the fact that even today manufacturers and service provides do not respond to consumer complaints with alacrity, forcing consumers to either seek the services of consumer groups wherever possible or go to consumer courts. While intervention by consumer groups certainly helps, not every consumer organisation has the wherewithal to pursue cases on behalf of consumers. Many of them also say that the response of the industry or trade depends on the clout that the consumer group wields. Besides, many organisations feel that their limited resources should be utilised for taking up larger issues concerning consumers instead of handling individual complaints.
This brings us to need for the manufacturing sector as well as the services sector to provide not just better after sales service, but also an efficient system of handling consumer complaints. In fact, every large manufacturer and every public utility should provide for a system of ombudsman to handle consumer complaints impartially and quickly. Similarly associations of industries and trade should provide for an independent ombudsman. The work of the ombudsman should be made public through annual reports. Consumer group have already begun to lobby for these measures and one has to see how the industry would respond.
Q: Whether eviction granted on the ground that the suit premises is an old structure and is unfit and unsafe for habitation is based on evidence and liable to be disturbed?
Ans: In Raghunath (Died) through L.Rs v Raghbir Dass Bawa (1999 (1) R.C.J. 585) the P&H, H.C. took the view thus:
The ground for eviction of the premises was that the demised property has become unsafe and unfit for human habitation. The Rent Controller held that if the property has become unfit and unsafe for human habitation the findings were adverse to the landlord. The landlord had preferred an appeal and the Appellate Authority had set aside the findings of the Rent Controller and hence the present revision petition before the H.C.
The H.C. noted that there is no dispute that the suit premises is an old structure. The Appellate Authority has returned the finding of the fact that property in question is unfit and unsafe for human habitation. The court would interfere only in the findings are not based on evidence or contrary to law or are absurd.
Referring to the evidence on record, in the present proceedings, the H.C. noted that the City Engineer has categorically deposed that some portion of the building has already collapsed and fallen. The walls are bulging out. There were cracks therein.
So much so that there were holes at several places in the roof. It is not only the witness of the respondents who made such statements, but the Civil Engineer produced by the petitioner even admitted that certain portion of the walls bad fallen.
Admittedly, there were civil litigation's between the parties. In that case, the Court had appointed one Advocate as the Local Commissioner. In his report, he has shown that walls have been damaged. The roof of the Kothari had fallen and left wall of the said Kothari had completely broken.
Thus, the evidence on record clearly establishes that the property in question has become unfit and unsafe for human habitation. The findings arrived at by the Appellate Authority were based on evidence and not conjectures. It leaves no scope for interference.
Q: I am an employee of a nationalised bank and a shareholder of Cooperative Group Housing Society formed by us, which is duly registered. The Society has been allotted land by HUDA at Panchkula (Haryana) for which construction has already commenced but not yet completed and the flats are likely to be completed by June, 2000. Presently, I am residing in a rented accommodation.
I have availed of housing loan from bank and paying to the society the amount in instalments as per construction schedule, for the financial year ending 31.3.1999, please advise.
Whether the interest accrued on this housing loan taken from my employer and paid to the society for construction can be deducted from my total income for the financial year 1.4.1998 to 31.3.1999 under Section-24 i.e. Income from Housing Property, if not why?
S.L. Gupta, Chandigarh.
Ans: On the facts stated by you, you will not be eligible to claim deduction in respect of accrued interest for the period April, 98 to March, 99 as per Section 54 because the property has yet not been completed. You will be eligible to claim the deduction u/s 24 to the extent of Rs 30,000 per annum for the arrear interest payment only after the construction of the house has been completed in four equal instalments.
Q: What amount of maximum gratuity was eligible for a person retiring from a private limited company, on 31-1-1997 after 31½ years service?
2. What part of CANPEP-1991, encashed during financial year 1998-99, need to be included in income, for tax liabilities?
Som Nath, Panchkula.
Ans: The maximum exempted amount of gratuity is equal to ½ months salary of each year of completed service calculated on the basis of the average salary for the 10 months immediately preceding the month in which such event occurs. However, the maximum exempted limit of gratuity has been raised to Rs 3,50,000 w.e.f. 24.9.1997. The entire amount received by encashing CANPEP 1991 will be added to your income specially if the investment was under such a scheme whereby you were eligible for 100 per cent deduction on the investment in that year of investment.
Q: I am a bank employee working in State Bank of Patiala, Faridkot. My total income for the financial year i.e. 1998-99 is 1,12,000 included Rs 9018/- as a leave encashment of 30 days.
So, advise me whether the leave encashment is taxable or not during the service. As per verdict of Supreme Court of India in the case of Commissioner of Income Tax; West Bengal v Tollygunge Club Limited dated 18.12.1998 vide which it has opined that amount of leave encashment is not income receipt but capital receipt. Hence it cannot taxable under any section of income tax act under any circumstances.
Rakesh Gakhar, Faridkot.
Ans: On the facts stated by you you are hereby advised that the entire amount of money received on leave encashment while in service will be fully taxable as your income. It is not a capital receipt. As per Income-tax Act only leave encashment at the time of retirement is exempted subject to certain limits.
Q: 1. My grandfather left a piece of property in my name in his Will, from which I got rent of Rs 4000 during 1998-99. I consider it as H.U.F. income, so no I.T. is payable as it is not to clubbed with the income from my salary. Please clarify.
2. My son resigned from the job in India and left for job in the USA on 7th July 98. While in India, he earned about Rs 58000 as gross salary during 1998-99 and considering standard deduction his income is below the taxable limit. Therefore, no I.T. return is required to be filed by him. In case of otherwise, please clarify how and where the same is to be filed. For the income in the USA, he is paying I.T. over there.
Tarsem Jain, Patiala.
Out of the piece of property left by your grandfather
from which you are getting rental income, the same cannot
be treated as HUF Income just because you consider it to
be HUF property. This is because of the fact that this
property has been given to you by your grand father in
the Will in you name and not in the name of your HUF.
Hence the income from the property being rent will be
liable to be included in yours salary income and it will
not be treated as the income of your HUF. If your
grandfather in the Will would have mentioned about giving
away the property exclusively to your Hindu Undivided
family only, then it would have been the property of the
HUF but as the same has not been done there is no
question of Income from this property being taxed in the
hands of the HUF. Please start showing the income in you
Income Tax Return. As the net taxable income of your son
is much below the exempted limit of Income Tax after
granting standard deduction, hence, he is not liable to
file income tax return. It is also presumed that he does
not fulfil the economic criteria, namely fulfilling
anyone condition out of six conditions. Therefore he is
not required to file his Income-tax return. If he would
have fulfilled anyone of the six economic conditions even
when the income was below the exemption limit, he was
liable to file the Income-tax return. The income from
earnings in the USA will be shown by him in his
Income-tax return to be filed in the USA.
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