SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI



THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
B U S I N E S S

Senators reach deal on US stimulus bill
Washington, February 7
Against a backdrop of rising unemployment in the US, Senate Democrats have reached an agreement with Republican moderates to guarantee the approval of President Barack Obama’s $780 billion recovery plan.

Rajus get special prisoner status
Hyderabad, February 7
After experiencing the life of an ordinary prisoner for nearly a month, the disgraced former chairman of Satyam Computers B Ramalinga Raju will now get a special treatment in jail here.

Bailout for media industry soon
New Delhi, February 7
The government will shortly announce a stimulus package for the media industry in view of the difficulties being faced by it due to the financial crisis, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Anand Sharma said today.

Well-trained cabin crew need of hour
It is not within the scope of airlines and ground authorities to ensure 'good behaviour' of passengers on flights. Both cabin and cockpit crews have been trained to handle unruly and drunk passengers tactfully but firmly to maintain peace on flights.


EARLIER STORIES



Lamborghini’s regional manager (Southeast Asia and Pacific) Rocco Basta poses with a Lamborghini Murcielago LP 640 during the launch of a dealership in Jakarta on Friday. A Lamborghini Murcielago LP 640 is estimated to be worth $768,000.
Lamborghini’s regional manager (Southeast Asia and Pacific) Rocco Basta poses with a Lamborghini Murcielago LP 640 during the launch of a dealership in Jakarta on Friday. A Lamborghini Murcielago LP 640 is estimated to be worth $768,000. — Reuters

IMF chief foresees resource crunch
Kuala Lumpur, February 7
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) may be out of resources in the next 6-8 months as the current financial crisis may require more funds, its managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn warned here today.

RNOR’s forex income not taxable in India
Q: I have been working in the UAE and got NRI status for last seven years. If I go back to India in May 2009, I will get RNOR (resident but not ordinarily resident) status for the financial year 2009-10 as total days of being resident of India for preceding seven years will be less than 729 days. Is my understanding correct to get the RNOR status?






Top








 

Senators reach deal on US stimulus bill

Washington, February 7
Against a backdrop of rising unemployment in the US, Senate Democrats have reached an agreement with Republican moderates to guarantee the approval of President Barack Obama’s $780 billion recovery plan.

A group of moderate lawmakers announced a bipartisan agreement yesterday following some tough negotiations on the $780 billion-mega stimulus package. At $780 billion, the legislation would be smaller than the measure that cleared the House of Representatives on a party-line vote last week.

In essence, the Democratic leadership and two centrist Republicans announced they had agreed on about $110 billion cuts to the roughly $900 billion legislation a deal expected to provide at least the 60 votes needed for approval in the Senate and put it for negotiations with the House, which has passed its own version.

The pact, which is expected to be approved early next week, was finalised hours after the Labour Department announced that 598,000 jobs were lost in January. It showed the US unemployment rate surged in January to 7.6 per cent, the highest since 1992, while the nearly 600,000 jobs lost was the worst such number since 1974.

“The American people want us to work together. They don’t want to see us dividing along partisan lines on the most serious crisis confronting our country,” said Senator Susan Collins of Maine, one of three Republican moderates who broke ranks and pledged their votes for the landmark stimulus bill.

Earlier, US President Obama had appealed to the lawmakers to quickly pass the Bill into law lest the economic crisis turns into a catastrophe.

“If we don’t move swiftly to put this plan in motion, our economic crisis could become a national catastrophe. Millions of Americans will lose their jobs, their homes, and their healthcare,” Obama argued.

“There is a winner tonight,” said Senator Joe Lieberman, an Independent from Connecticut and one of the moderates whose support was crucial in building support for the plan.

Robert Gibbs, White House Press Secretary, said the administration was pleased with the progress made in the Senate. — PTI

Top

 

Satyam Saga
Rajus get special prisoner status
Suresh Dharur
Tribune News Service

Hyderabad, February 7
After experiencing the life of an ordinary prisoner for nearly a month, the disgraced former chairman of Satyam Computers B Ramalinga Raju will now get a special treatment in jail here.

Raju, along with his younger brother and former managing director Rama Raju, have been granted special class prisoner status by a local court. They will be entitled to benefits like a special room, cots, separate toilet, mosquito nets and the luxury of home food.

Ever since they were brought to Chanchalguda prison following their judicial remand in connection with the Rs 7,200-crore fraud in the software giant, the Raju brothers have been clubbed with other ordinary prisoners.

Based on a plea by their counsel, the sixth additional chief metropolitan magistrate granted special prisoner status for them.

Under the special prisoner status, they are also entitled for newspapers and a television set in their room.

Meanwhile, a local here today extended the judicial remand of Raju and four other accused till February 21.

Top

 

Bailout for media industry soon
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 7
The government will shortly announce a stimulus package for the media industry in view of the difficulties being faced by it due to the financial crisis, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Anand Sharma said today.

“Representatives of the industry had written to the government and also met me today on the adverse impact of the financial crisis on the media industry. We are going to give some stimulus package to the media industry and we do hope to mitigate the situation,”’ he told reporters here. He was speaking after meeting captains of the media industry.

Noting that the government was sensitive about the impact of the financial crisis on the media industry, Sharma said: “The Information and Broadcasting Ministry has already sent certain recommendations about the package to the Finance Ministry and the government will announce it soon.”

Asked if the package would also cover the electronic media, Sharma said though it was mostly concerning the print media, some aspects of it would apply to the electronic media too. The minister, however, refused to spell out its volume and the nature of the package.

Top

 

Aviation Notes
Well-trained cabin crew need of hour
by K.R. Wadhwaney

It is not within the scope of airlines and ground authorities to ensure 'good behaviour' of passengers on flights. Both cabin and cockpit crews have been trained to handle unruly and drunk passengers tactfully but firmly to maintain peace on flights.

Worldwide, ugly situations, initiated by drunken passengers, surface from time to time on flights but seldom, if at all, the situation gets beyond control. It is mandatory on majority of international routes to serve liquor to passengers. As it is complimentary, some passengers take one too many and become nuisance to co-passengers. There are instances when even VIPs, including ministers and MPs, misbehave and pose serious problems to hostesses.

On February 1, 2009, a lone middle-aged, drunk man aboard the Indigo Goa-Delhi flight indulged in tantrums. In the rigmarole, an inexperienced cabin crew and temperamental commander misread the situation and dubbed him as a 'probable hijacker'. A priority, full emergency landing was demanded and made. The plane was parked at the isolated bay and the 161 innocent passengers were subjected to a harrowing time. The fault in the “hijack farce” was of the crew. They failed to handle an unarmed, drunk passenger.

To say the imaginary hijack drama led to checking air safety preparedness is a far-fetched and unconvincing argument. The truth is that most of the cabin crew, particularly on no-frill carriers, are lacking in training of evacuating and rescuing passengers. According to analysts, the situation will be dicey if and when real emergency occurs.

Top

 

IMF chief foresees resource crunch

Kuala Lumpur, February 7
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) may be out of resources in the next 6-8 months as the current financial crisis may require more funds, its managing director Dominique Strauss-Kahn warned here today.

“Today, the IMF's resources are enough to face the situation but because we are facing a global crisis, the needs may be much bigger than previously. We have to intervene in Asia, Africa and Central Europe, Latin America, may be elsewhere. (So) I can’t promise that in 6-8 months from now, we will have enough resources,” he said.

Earlier, Strauss-Kahn commended central banks across Asia for being alert and acting swiftly by reducing interest rates to stimulate economic activity.

He said the Reserve Bank of India and Bank of Korea had perhaps been most aggressive in cutting interest rates. He admitted that monetary policy alone would not be enough to offset the disruption in financial markets and the severity of the downturn, adding that not every country could undertake fiscal stimulus.

The IMF chief expressed confidence in the Asian banks noting that they were generally stronger than before and would be in a good position when the economy recovered.— PTI

Top

 

Investor Guidance
RNOR’s forex income not taxable in India
by A.N. Shanbhag

Q: I have been working in the UAE and got NRI status for last seven years. If I go back to India in May 2009, I will get RNOR (resident but not ordinarily resident) status for the financial year 2009-10 as total days of being resident of India for preceding seven years will be less than 729 days. Is my understanding correct to get the RNOR status?

Will I get tax exemption for foreign income for April and May 2009 or others foreign income as I will have RNOR status?

Further, I will get gratuity for last seven years and some part for April and May 2009. Will this total gratuity amount will become taxable or only the part for April and May 2009 will be taxable? Also, please confirm that total gratuity amount will be tax-free once I get the RNOR status. — Baburao

A: Resident but not ordinarily resident (RNOR) is a person who satisfies one of the following conditions:

a) He has been a non-resident in India in nine out of the 10 previous years preceding that year, or

b) Has during the seven previous years preceding that year been in India for a period of, or periods amounting in all to, 729 days or less.

The seven-year period has to be computed in respect of each year of your return. For example, since you will return to India permanently in May 2009, the period of seven previous years preceding FY 09-10 will consist of FY 02-03 to FY 08-09. Therefore, if you were in India for 729 days or less between FY 02-03 to FY 08-09, you will be an RNOR for FY 09-10. Similarly, if you were in India for 729 days or less from FY 03-04 till FY 09-10, you will be an RNOR for FY 10-11.

An RNOR is not required pay tax in India on his forex income. He does not have to pay tax on the income, which accrues or arises outside India, unless it is derived from a business controlled in or a profession set up in India. Viewed at it from another angle, the taxability of RNOR is the same as that of a resident with one exception. The income received and accrued outside India from a business controlled from outside India or a profession set-up outside India is not taxable in India.

In your case, if you qualify to be an RNOR for FY 09-10 (as per the above-mentioned provisions) the gratuity accrued to you from FY 02-03 to FY 08-09 when you were an NRI and, therefore, it is tax exempt in India. Similarly, for the gratuity received in respect of April and May 2009 also, if your status is RNOR the same will be tax-free in India.

Premium allocation charges

Q: I was about to purchase an insurance policy when I happened to come across something called premium allocation charges. Since the number was very high every year (in the first year it was as high as 25 per cent), the agent told me that this is like a load for the policy? I was aghast at the fact that any policy can charge a 25 per cent load as against 2.25 per cent average that mutual funds charge. So I have decided not to go in for this policy.

However, with that I am back to square one. Can you let me know what options I have if I want to purchase an insurance policy at this age? Which is best suited for me? — P Venkata Rao

A: You may have a very good look at the term insurance policies of any of the insurers. Term insurance covers the policyholder for a desired number of years against death, accident, and disability etc., same as the other policies. In contrast, it does not have any maturity, paid-up, surrender or loan values.

On occurrence of contingency, the beneficiary gets the sum insured but on survival, the insured gets nothing. In the case of any other policy, with or without bonus, whole life or endowment, the return on security component is also nil. It gets mixed up with the return on the investment component, which is much lower than the market rate. This is where the investor loses.

Term insurance is consistent with the universal policy — ‘Go to insurance companies for life cover and to financial institutions for investment’.

The authors may be contacted at wonderlandconsultants@yahoo.com

Top

 





HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |