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Monthly Archives: December 2012

Dip in FII’s number in India

FII-investment_0In first decline in five years, the number of Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) registered in India has dipped to 1,755 this year, although their investments have grown sharply.As per data available with market regulator Sebi, the total number of registered FIIs stood at 1,755 as on December 21, as against 1,767 at the end of 2011. The number of FIIs has been rising continuously since the end of 2007, when there were a total of 1,219 registered FIIs in the country. At the end of 2010, there were 1,718 registered FIIs, while at the end of the previous year the number was 1,700 and 1,594 in 2008 end.However, the number of FII sub-accounts has risen to 6,350, from 6,278 at the end of 2011. The sub-accounts include foreign firms, individuals and institutions on whose behalf FIIs make those investments. The rate of growth in their numbers has, however, grown at a slower pace in 2012.On the net investment side, FIIs have so far pumped in $23.5 billion into stocks – the second highest figure since the foreign investors were allowed entry into Indian capital markets in 1992.As far as debt is concerned, FIIs have invested $6.4 billion in 2012, with just a week remaining.

 

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World’s longest high speed rail- China’s

China will open the world’s longest high-speed rail line next week when a link between Beijing and the southern metropolis of Guangzhou is inaugurated, underscoring its commitment to a trouble-plagued transport scheme.The 2,298-km (1,428-mile) line, parts of which are already in operation, will begin full service on Wednesday, halving travel time to less than 10 hours on trains which will run at 300 kph (186 mph).The new route offers a chance for China’s railways ministry, which has been dogged by scandals and missteps, to redeem itself.A July 2011 crash of a high-speed train killed 40 people and raised concerns about the safety of the fast-growing network and threatened plans to export high-speed technology.

high speed trainLast year’s accident near the booming eastern coastal city of Wenzhou occurred when a high-speed train rammed into another stranded on the track after being hit by lightning.Rail investment slowed sharply in the wake of that accident and state media reported earlier this year that the government had cut planned railway investment by 500 billion yuan to 2.3 trillion yuan under a five-year plan to 2015.But that may reflect cuts that have already taken place as the Ministry of Railways has raised its planned investment budget three times this year as part of government efforts to bolster a slowing economy.The ministry plans to spend a total of 630 billion yuan in 2012 and has been given clearance to sell more bonds to finance the investments – one of the few outright spending commitments made by the central government in a slew of project approvals worth $157 billion which have not specified how they will be funded.Despite its expanding network, the Ministry of Railways struggles to make money. It suffered an after-tax loss of 8.8 billion yuan in the first half of 2012 in the face of rising operating costs and mounting debts.However, the government says it remained committed to building high-speed railways between its major cities, with China eventually planning to run them into Russia and down to Southeast Asia.China said in May it would open up the railway industry to private investment on an unprecedented scale, but private investors have been skeptical. The need for funding is acute. China still needs billions more in rail investment to remove bottlenecks in cargo transport, ease overcrowding in passenger transport and develop commuter lines in its sprawling mega cities.

 

 
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Posted by on December 24, 2012 in current affairs, Markets

 

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Women fired from job b’coz she is so attractive!!!

Colleagues in the officeThe Iowa Supreme Court ruled on Friday that employers in the state can legally fire workers they find too attractive.In a unanimous decision, the court held that a dentist did not violate the state’s civil rights act when he terminated a female dental assistant whom his wife considered a threat to their marriage.The dental assistant, Melissa Nelson, who worked for dentist James Knight for more than 10 years and had never flirted with him, according to the testimony of both parties, sued, saying she would not have been fired if she were a man.At trial, Knight testified he had complained to Nelson on several occasions that her clothing was too tight, revealing and “distracting.”But sometime in 2009, he also began exchanging text messages with Nelson. Most of these were work-related and harmless, according to testimony. But others were more suggestive, including one in which Knight asked Nelson how often she had an orgasm. She never answered the text.In late 2009, Knight’s wife found out about the text exchanges and demanded her husband terminate the dental assistant because “she was a big threat to our marriage.”In early 2010, he fired her, saying their relationship had become a detriment to his family.Nelson sued, saying that she had done nothing wrong, that she considered Knight a friend and father figure, and that she would not have been terminated but for her gender.Knight argued that Nelson was terminated not because of her gender – all the employees of his practice are women – but because of the way their relationship had developed and the threat it posed to his marriage.The seven justices, all men, said the basic question presented by the case was “whether an employee who has not engaged in flirtatious conduct may be lawfully terminated simply because the boss views the employee as an irresistible attraction.” The high court ruled that bosses can fire workers they find too attractive and that such actions do not amount to unlawful discrimination.

 
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Posted by on December 24, 2012 in Corporate, current affairs

 

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Aside

Ratan tataAs Ratan Tata steps down and Cyrus Mistry steps in at Bombay House Friday, top CEOs of the world have said the USD 100-billion Tata Group is India’s best-known global brand within and outside the country.”Ratan Tata occupies the well-deserved iconic status who has taken the group from largely an Indian family-owned business house into a professionally managed global conglomerate,” a survey by Assocham testifies. About 77% of those who participated in the survey said they are confident Mistry will be able to steer the group well. Assocham said it has surveyed about 78 top CEOs and heads of both domestic and foreign companies in the first fortnight of December.The survey was conducted not only in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Hyderabad, but also in London, New York and Singapore.However, the respondents said the biggest challenge for Mistry would be to ensure that the Tata companies are able to sail through the global slowdown, since the group operates in some 80 countries, several of which are in the grip of difficult times.The group has interests in steel, automobile, chemicals, telecommunication, information technology, beverages and hospitality, among other areas.The Tata story which began in 1868 by Jamsetji N Tata has been the most successful among India Inc. The role played by Ratan Tata and J R D Tata in making the group truly global has been deservedly recognised all over the world. Infosys Technologies, Wipro, Mahindra & Mahindra and Aditya Birla Group were the other major Indian corporate houses listed to have made their mark on the global business landscape, the survey reported. However, it said the brand Tata stood out among all the top Indian corporates and perceived as the truly international brand. It said while the change of guard at the Bombay House, the headquarters of the Tatas later this month, is on the corporate calendar and the event would go down as a landmark occasion among the most watched for several years. Ratan Tata, after being at the helms of affairs for 21 years at Tata Sons, the holding company of the group, will be retiring on December 28.

 

Tata’s : India’s best known Global Brand

 

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No Tendulkar No Cricket : Sachin retires from ODI’s

Type Sachin Tendulkar in Google search and 42,600,000 results pop up in 0.19 seconds. It’s not just numbers but testimony to a following that neither any contemporary nor the old-time cricketers have enjoyed. So the response to the news of his ODI retirement is expectedly colossal and evokes a unanimous response thank you, Sachin. The curtains were pulled halfway down on Sunday on a career that began at a juvenile age of 16 in 1989 and partly ended on a Sunday afternoon in December 2012. “I have decided to retire from one-day format. I feel blessed to have fulfilled the dream of being part of a World Cup wining Indian team,” the statement took India by surprise. Such is the impact of this name on Indian cricket that even though the declaration was expected, it seemed a surprise. That shows how synonymous Sachin Tendulkar and cricket are to Indians. For some, no Tendulkar means no cricket. They started watching cricket for Tendulkar; they may stop it because of no Tendulkar.

sachinA tiny figure, all of 16, walked onto the field for the first time in Pakistan against blood-thirsty Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis. One ball roared and the kid was in a pool of blood. After a little patch work, he stood up, “I’ll bat.” Navjot Singh Sidhu’s jaw dropped right to the ground. The best of his ODI form was probably in the 1998 Sharjah series and the 2003 World Cup in South Africa. That Sharjah series came to be known as a ‘Sandstorm’, when following a desert storm, Tendulkar tore the Aussies apart. Packed to the rafters, the spectators enjoyed a lesson in attacking batting that took India to the final even though Australia won the match. Tendulkar faced the criticism of not being a finisher throughout his career. That notion was put to bed in the 2003 World Cup when India reached the final. It was probably that loss which added fuel to Tendulkar’s burning desire of winning World Cup for India. With 673 runs, including a century and 6 fifties, Tendulkar took India to the final where an assault by Ricky Ponting and Damien Martyn took the match away. India were the co-hosts for the 2011 World Cup Tendulkar’s last on all counts and India’s best chance to win in some time with the team doing well under MS Dhoni. And in the semis against archrivals Pakistan, it was Tendulkar’s 85 that saved the day for India before that six from Dhoni in Mumbai won India another World Cup, which the team dedicated to Tendulkar. There wasn’t a void left now in a glittering career.As he hung his ODI boots on Sunday, the 39-year-old’s figures read 18,426 runs in 463 matches at an average of 44.83. And at a time when the clamour for his head grew, his ODI average of 45.93 since 2010 is only behind Virat Kohli (53.16) and MS Dhoni (45.93).His contribution with the ball, especially in his younger days, can’t be undermined Craig McMillan of South Africa can testify that. At times his 154 ODI wickets put him in spotlight as the elusive allrounder that India still haven’t found. To complete the numbers game, Tendulkar also took 140 catches in the ODIs. Tendulkar never lost his composure and remain dignified both on and off the field. He never questioned an umpire’s call but accepted it with grace. He never abused, never resorted to sledging. Only did what he knew the best, that is play cricket.That’s what makes him stand in elite company. That’s what makes him Sachin Tendulkar. Thank you, Sachin, for entertaining us. ODI cricket will find it difficult to fill the void created by your absence.

 
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Posted by on December 24, 2012 in current affairs, India, Sports

 

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Religions people believe World-wide

A study on Religions estimated that Christianity was the largest faith at 2.2 billion adherents or 31.5 percent of Religionsthe world’s population.The Roman Catholic Church makes up 50 percent of that total, with Protestants — including Anglicans and non-denominational churches — at 37 percent and Orthodox at 12 percent.There are about 1.6 billion Muslims around the world, or 23 percent of the global population. “The overwhelming majority (87-90 percent) are Sunnis, about 10-13 percent are Shia Muslims. Among the 1.1 billion unaffiliated people around the world, 62 percent live in China alone and they make up 52.2 percent of the Chinese population.Japan is the only other country with an unaffiliated majority, at 57 percent of the national population. After that comes the United States, where 16.4 percent of all Americans said they have no link to an established faith.The world’s Hindu population is concentrated mostly in India, Nepal and Bangladesh. Half of the world’s Buddhists live in China, followed far behind by Thailand at 13.2 percent of the world Buddhist population and Japan with 9.4 percent.The study found that about 405 million people, or about 6 percent of the world population, followed folk religions such as those found in Africa and China or among Native American and Australian aboriginal peoples.Another 58 million, or nearly 1 percent of the world population, belonged to “other religions” including Baha’i, Taoism, Jainis, Shintoism, Sikhism, Tenrikyo, Wicca and Zoroastrianism. Most were in the Asia-Pacific region.

 

 
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Posted by on December 19, 2012 in current affairs, India

 

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A story of an Indian Beach & a Man

Unsafe waters made tourists ignore its beaches, till Yathish Baikampady changed the way they are maintained and manned. Till about four years ago, Panambur was just another stretch along the Mangalore beach. The two-km stretch was quite similar to what neighbouring Tannirbhavi is today: A deserted place where you could set up your folding chairs in a shaded grove near the beach, have a picnic, and spend a lazy day.

Mangalore beachBut, today, Panambur is brimming with life. There are three shacks, and six lifeguards on patrol. It is barely 9 am, and at least 200 people have been to the beach in the past two hours. It is not even the tourist season. You could mistake it for Goa. If Mangalore’s beaches had not been exploited for commercial activities earlier, it was not because no one had thought about it, but because its waters are much rougher than that of Goa or Kerala. While everyone knew what the problem was, no one had thought of a solution, until Yathish Baikampady came along. The 48-year-old Baikampady had been a manager at State Bank of India for more than 25 years, when he stumbled upon an opportunity to clean up Mangalore’s beaches. What started as a clean-up exercise quickly led to a larger opportunity that led to Panambur shedding its image of being an unsafe beach. Mangalore may not have been much of a tourist attraction because of its rough waters, but other Indian beaches that draw crowds are not necessarily safe either. In 2011, 28,859 people were recorded to have died due to drowning (not including deaths from capsized boats) in India. It is in this sphere that Baikampady’s company Panambur Beach Tourism Development Project has made a difference. His love affair with the sea comes from his roots: He belongs to a local fishing community called the Mogaveeras. But, for a large part of his life, his tryst with the sea had remained confined to childhood memories. In the 1980s, he found himself a bank job, and continued with it for 25 years. In 2008, Mangalore’s municipal corporation was floating a tender to privatise the beach. This meant the beach would be run by a private organisation that would be responsible for its upkeep. The private player could organise events—such as concerts and game shows—to generate revenues, and run beach shacks. It, however, could not raise parking fees for vehicles and would have to share a portion of the revenue with the municipal corporation.This was when Baikampady decided to look at the new opportunity as a full-time job, and quit his job at the bank. He bid for, and won, the municipal tender. He proposed that the government does not have to spend any money; he would pay the municipality 15 percent if he made profits. Although he is still using a trial-and-error method—he is yet to make profits—he has won a similar tender (for 10 years) for Someshwar beach.

 

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