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RIL net drops 11.53 pc
Mumbai, July 24
Mukesh Ambani-promoted Reliance Industries today reported 11.53 per cent decline in net profit at Rs 3,636 crore for the first quarter ended June 30, 2009, over the same period last year.

3G spectrum auction this year, says IT Minister
New Delhi, July 24
As the confusion over the auction of the third generation (3G) spectrum continues, the government today made an attempt to salvage some situation by saying that the auction would take place this year.

Cheating case against Maytas Properties
Hyderabad, July 24
The Andhra Pradesh police has registered a cheating case against a real estate company, owned by family members of the disgraced former chairman of Satyam Computers B Ramalinga Raju, for duping the customers of a mega housing project.



EARLIER STORIES





A B-747 Supertanker drops water during a demonstration at the Frankfurt Hahn airport, 100 km west of Frankfurt, on Friday. The B-747 fire-fighting aircraft is capable of dispersing 20,500 gallons of retardant. — Reuters

US team in Hyderabad to probe Satyam scam
Hyderabad, July 24
A high-level team from Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the market regulator in the US, flew down to Hyderabad and held discussions with CBI officials about the progress of investigation into the Satyam scandal.

Corporate Results
Jet Airways posts net loss of Rs 225 crore
Mumbai, July 24
Faced with intense competition and high interest cost, private carrier Jet Airways India today reported a net loss of Rs 225.33 crore during the first quarter ended June 30, 2009. The airline had a net profit of Rs 143.38 crore in the same period last year.

SBI cuts deposit rates
Mumbai, July 24
Public sector behemoth State Bank of India today slashed its deposit rates across certain maturities above six months by 0.25-0.5 per cent effective from Monday.

 

 





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RIL net drops 11.53 pc

Mumbai, July 24
Mukesh Ambani-promoted Reliance Industries today reported 11.53 per cent decline in net profit at Rs 3,636 crore for the first quarter ended June 30, 2009, over the same period last year.

The refining major had a net profit of Rs 4,110 crore in the first quarter of last fiscal, RIL said in a statement.

Total income fell by 21.64 per cent to Rs 32,757 crore in the June quarter from Rs 41,805 crore in the corresponding period a year-ago.

"Timely completion with safe and stable start up of the new SEZ refinery and the deep-water, oil and gas KG D6 block are noteworthy accomplishments.

"These projects will not only play a significant role in shaping the future growth at RIL but more importantly will help change the energy landscape of India and the industry globally," RIL chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani said.

The company commenced gas production from KG D6 basin from April 2 this year.

RIL's revenue from petrochemical business stood at Rs 11,540 crore in the first quarter, down by 22.4 per cent from Rs 14,871 crore in the year-ago period.

Revenue from the refining business also dropped 22.72 per cent to Rs 25,180 crore during the quarter from Rs 32,587 crore in the corresponding period in previous fiscal.

The company's gross refining margin stood at $7.5/bbl for the quarter ended June 30, 2009, the statement added.

However, revenue from oil and gas segment doubled to Rs 1,864 crore in the first quarter from Rs 787 crore in year-ago period.

Shares of RIL closed at Rs 2,013.75, down by 1.20 per cent over previous close on BSE. — PTI

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3G spectrum auction this year, says IT Minister
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, July 24
As the confusion over the auction of the third generation (3G) spectrum continues, the government today made an attempt to salvage some situation by saying that the auction would take place this year.

Addressing the Assocham Telecom Summit on the second day here today, Minister of State for Communication & IT Gurudas Kamat said 3G spectrum auction would take place within this year.

The clarification from the government comes in the wake of reports that due to the prevailing differences between the Telecom Ministry and the Finance Ministry over stipulating the base price for the auction and the number of players per circle the auction could be put off till next year.

The specially created GoM was still to hold any meeting on the issue and even after the GoM takes a decision, the issue would go to the Union Cabinet for the final clearance. The GoM, set up last month is headed by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee and is the second time that it has been set up to tide out the differences between the two ministries.

Kamat also said the government plans to raise Internet subscriber base to 100 million and provide Internet connectivity to all villages by 2014.

He characterised the government programme in extending broadband connectivity across the country as a “revolution in data connectivity 2009-14” that would follow the revolution in the voice connectivity that brought over 400 million people into the telecom network as subscribers.

Common Service Centre with broadband connectivity have been planned in one lakh panchayats in three years of which 70,000 are already set up, he said.

The data revolution would create over three lakh jobs in the interior. The Minister recalled that the broadband connectivity at present was only two per cent of the population and personal computer penetration just three per cent.

According to Subodh Kumar, Additional Secretary, Department of Telecommunications (DoT), lots of spectrum could be released from the frequencies now allotted to broadcasting for commercial use.

He said spectrum allotment policy should also ensure that economic efficiency of the service provider was not affected.

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Cheating case against Maytas Properties
Suresh Dharur
Tribune News Service

Hyderabad, July 24
The Andhra Pradesh police has registered a cheating case against a real estate company, owned by family members of the disgraced former chairman of Satyam Computers B Ramalinga Raju, for duping the customers of a mega housing project.

Maytas Properties Limited (MPL), promoted by Raju’s son Rama Raju and other family members, came under scanner after hundreds of customers of its Rs 1,000-crore residential complex “Maytas Hill County” alleged that the project had been abandoned after collecting deposits from them.

The MPL had launched the prestigious project in 2006 on 300 acres of land near Bachupalli on the city outskirts, promising to construct 326 independent bungalows and villas, besides 800 apartments.

The company has already collected about Rs 600 crore from customers. However, soon after the Satyam scandal came to light, the project ran into rough weather with promoters halting all works mid-way, leaving the customers in a lurch.

Based on complaints filed by the customers, the city police registered a case under Sections 406 (criminal breach of trust) and 420 (cheating), Deputy Commissioner of Police (Detective Department) R S Praveen Kumar said.

Maytas Properties is a sister concern of Maytas Infra, also promoted by Ramalinga Raju’s family members. The state government had recently scrapped the Hyderabad Metro Rail project deal awarded to Maytas Infra following its failure to achieve the financial closure and mobilize funds.

It was revealed after the recent Maytas Board meeting that the Rajus had diverted Rs 220 crore from the housing project to their personal accounts, which resulted in the delay of the project. The buyers were made to cough up much higher prices than the prevailing market rates of comparable properties.

“Some of us paid the entire cost of the house, ranging from Rs 65 lakh for a three-bed room apartment of about 2,000 sq ft carpet area to Rs 1.5 crore for a villa, after the company offered us a discount of five per cent on an outright payment. We were promised that the houses would be delivered in March 2008 with all facilities, but none of the promises were fulfilled,” said B V Ramaraju, an Air India officer who purchased an apartment in the complex.

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US team in Hyderabad to probe Satyam scam
Tribune News Service

Hyderabad, July 24
A high-level team from Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the market regulator in the US, flew down to Hyderabad and held discussions with CBI officials about the progress of investigation into the Satyam scandal.

The five-member SEC team also met officials of the rechristened “Mahindra Satyam” and discussed about the financial aspects of the software giant including the ongoing process of re-statement of company accounts.

The visit of SEC officials came in the backdrop of several class action suits filed in the US against Satyam Computers, which is listed in the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). A large number of Satyam shareholders had filed suits in the local courts against Raju and the SEC will have to report to the courts on the progress of investigation.

The SEC team requested the Indian investigation agencies to furnish details about the progress of probe into the Rs 7,800 crore fraud.

The official sources said the SEC team had a closed-door interaction with CBI officials for a couple of hours and collected all the details about the progress of investigation done by the multiple agencies including CBI, SEBI, ED and SFIO.

In what is seen as the biggest fraud in India’s corporate history, Raju had, in January this year, confessed to falsifying the company’s accounts for years and creating fictitious assets.

The case was handed over to the CBI in February. In April this year, the investigating agency filed a charge-sheet against Raju and eight others under various sections of the IPC for cheating and forgery.

Meanwhile, the CBI Director Ashwani Kumar is also in town to review the progress in the investigation.

He held a meeting with the officials of the agency’s economic offences wing which is investigating the case. Several aspects of the probe including conducting lie detector tests on Raju and other accused and the progress made in tracing the foreign accounts and beneficiaries of the scam figured at the meeting.

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Corporate Results
Jet Airways posts net loss of Rs 225 crore

Mumbai, July 24
Faced with intense competition and high interest cost, private carrier Jet Airways India today reported a net loss of Rs 225.33 crore during the first quarter ended June 30, 2009. The airline had a net profit of Rs 143.38 crore in the same period last year.

Total income declined to Rs 2,371.21 crore during the quarter from Rs 2,867.16 crore in the same quarter last fiscal, the private carrier said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

"The company during the quarter ended June 30, 2009 suffered losses mainly on the account of lower yields due to intense competition and over capacity in the market besides high interest cost," the company said.

Ranbaxy profit soars over 28-fold

Pharma major Ranbaxy today reported over 28-fold jump in its standalone net profit at Rs 675.45 crore for the quarter ended June 30 compared to the same period last year. The company had a net profit of Rs 23.73 crore in the year-ago period.

Total sales during the second quarter, however, fell by 12.99 per cent to Rs 1,121.59 crore compared with Rs 1,288.99 crore in the same period last year, the company said.

HCC profit Rs 18.19 crore

Hindustan Construction Company (HCC) today reported a net profit of Rs 18.19 crore for the first quarter ended June 30. The profit was Rs 30.84 crore during the corresponding period a year ago.

The Mumbai-based company posted net sales of Rs 964.09 crore in the latest quarter of current fiscal (2009-10), while the same was at Rs 894.88 crore during the same quarter a year earlier.

Ceat net at Rs 60 crore

Tyre maker Ceat today reported a net profit of Rs 60.20 crore for the quarter ended June 30, 2009, against a loss of Rs 10.67 crore in the first quarter of the previous fiscal. Total income rose 2.36 per cent to Rs 679.62 crore during the quarter from Rs 663.95 crore in the same period a year-ago, Ceat said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Info Edge net up

Info Edge (India), the owner of leading job portal naukri.com, has posted a 2.5 per cent rise in net profit at Rs 13.30 crore in the first quarter of this fiscal, although its sales were hit due to a fall in corporate hiring. Total income of the Internet firm saw a fall of 7.75 per cent to Rs 61.93 crore in the first quarter as against Rs 67.14 crore in the corresponding quarter last year. — PTI, TNS

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SBI cuts deposit rates

Mumbai, July 24
Public sector behemoth State Bank of India today slashed its deposit rates across certain maturities above six months by 0.25-0.5 per cent effective from Monday.

The rate cut came shortly before the Reserve Bank's quarterly review of the annual monetary policy on Tuesday and is expected to put pressure on other banks to follow suit.

With today's reduction, interest rate for deposits having a maturity of one year to less than two years, would stand at 6.5 per cent against 7 per cent earlier, an SBI release said.

Rates for deposits in 2 years-1000 days maturities have been revised to 7 per cent (7.25 per cent) and 7.25 per cent (7.5 per cent) respectively, the bank said.

Similarly, deposits having 1001 days to less than 3 years will now offer 7 per cent (7.25 per cent). The bank will offer 7.5 per cent (7.75 per cent) and 7.75 per cent (8 per cent) rates for 5-8 years and 8-10 years maturity deposits, it said.

Also, 181 days to less than 1 year maturity deposits will now attract a rate of 6 per cent against 6.25 per cent earlier, the bank said. The reduction will be applicable for deposits below Rs 1 crore, SBI said. — PTI

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BRIEFLY

SC allows Daiichi open offer for Zenotech
New Delhi:
The Supreme Court on Friday allowed Japanese pharma firm Daiichi Sankyo to go ahead with the public offer for an additional 20 per cent stake in Zenotech Laboratories. A Bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan stayed the Madras High Court interim court that granted an interim injunction in connection with the offer. — PTI

Microsoft net dips 29 pc
New York:
Software giant Microsoft has reported a 29 per cent drop in net income at $3.04 billion in the fourth quarter ended June 30, with declining sales in global PC market impacting its revenues. Revenue plunged 17 per cent to $13.09 billion in the latest quarter from $15.83 billion in the same quarter previous year. — PTI

Engg exports down 22%
New Delhi:
Engineering exports plunged by about 22 per cent to $2.8 billion in May as compared to $3.6 billion in the same month last year as demand weakened in major global markets like the US and Europe. According to the Engineering Export Promotion Council (EEPC), exports were down 26 per cent in April 2009. — PTI

Vodafone revenue climbs 9 pc
London:
British telecom major Vodafone on Friday reported a nine per cent rise in revenue at 10.74 billion pounds in the first quarter ended June 2009, primarily helped by good performance in some markets, including India. The company's revenue increased by 9.3 per cent to £10.74 billion in the first quarter ended June 30, 2009, it said. — PTI

Shriram Transport to raise 500 cr
Chandigarh:
Shriram Transport Finance Company will raise Rs 500 crore through a debt programme with option to raise an identical amount if demand for its non- convertible debentures was overwhelming. The company has filed the prospectus for debt programme with Registrar of Companies. The NCD issue, with yield on redemption of up to 11.50 per cent (per annum), opens on July 27 and would close on August 14. — TNS

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