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RIL, Bajaj Auto and Coal India may witness some action today

After protracted wrangling, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) will begin the second round of audit of Reliance Industries (RIL) spending on the flagging eastern offshore KG-D6 gas block. CAG officials are scheduled to reach RIL's Navi Mumbai office on January 9 to begin the scrutiny. The audit was initially scheduled to begin on January 2 but was deferred to January 9. RIL had insisted that government can appoint any auditor including CAG to do a financial audit of its spending in KG-DWN-98/3 or KG-D6 block in Bay of Bengal but the Production Sharing Contract (PSC) does not allow a performance audit. CAG on the other hand believed that its constitutional mandate does not provide for any restrictions on the nature of audit.

Bajaj Auto has launched yet another 100 cc motorcycle, the Discover 100 T, at the upper end of the mass market segment priced at 50,500 (ex-New Delhi showrooms). The Discover 100 Tourer will take on the likes the Hero MotoCorp's Passion and Honda Motorcycle & Scooters India's (HMSI's) Dream Yuga. Currently, Bajaj Auto controls a fifth of the mass market space with 100 cc versions of the Discover and the Platina Powered by Bajaj Auto's patented 4-valve DTS-i technology, the Discover 100 T delivers 10.2 ps of power; the company claims that the new bike is 30% more powerful than other motorcycles in this segment, and that it delivers a fuel efficiency of 87 kilometres to the litre. On the styling front, the new Discover comes with a muscular tank and macho-looking headlamp, along with 10-spoke alloy wheels. The Discover 100 T quite clearly marks Bajaj's entry into the A3 sub-segment. The company hopes to sell 40,000 to 45,000 units per month.

Kick-starting the process of restructuring of Coal India (CIL), the government has invited bids for appointment of advisors to restructure the nation's largest coal producer. The development follows the Coal Ministry informing the Prime Minister's Office of the appointment of consultants with international expertise and frame timeline to take forward the proposal on restructuring of the state-owned miner. The Planning Commission and many high-level panels, including Expert Committee on Road Map for coal sector reforms - also known as T L Shankar Committee - recommended restructuring of CIL keeping in view the rapidly increasing demand of coal and the need for enhancing coal production and to make the coal sector competitive. The Planning Commission has earlier suggested spinning off CIL subsidiaries into separate entities so that each one of them can pursue its own goals, amid growing supply deficit of coal.

Lenders to bankrupt Kingfisher Airlines have decided to take legal action against the airline company for its failure to repay over 7,000-crore debt despite repeated reminders. Lenders had been pursuing a soft approach so far in the hope that the company, which has not paid interest on its loans for more than a year now, can be persuaded to come out with a revival plan. But their patience seems to be running out now. This is the first time that lenders are discussing recovery measures. The company began showing signs of weakness in November 2011 when it ran out of money to operate most of its flights and started reducing its flights to cut cost. The airline, which has never made a profit, also failed to pay salaries to its employees for a long time following which the employees went on an indefinite strike. Its flying licence was finally suspended in October 2012.

GMR Infrastructure's subsidiary - GMR Kishangarh Udaipur Ahmedabad Expressways has terminated the concession agreement entered into with National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for six laning of 555 Km Kishangarh - Udaipur - Ahmedabad highways. In 2011, GMR Infrastructure bagged NHAI's biggest project, the Rs 7,200-crore Kishangarh-Udaipur-Ahmedabad highway project, by quoting an aggressive premium of Rs 636 crore. GMR had reportedly sent a notice for termination of contract to NHAI due to the latter's failure to get an environmental clearance for the project and to notify the revised toll rate on this stretch being widened from four to six lanes. GMR Infrastructure is the infrastructure holding company formed to fund the capital requirements of various infrastructure projects in the Group's Energy, Highways and Airport and SEZ sectors. It undertakes the development of the infrastructure projects through its various subsidiaries.

Jet Airways has cut fares for a limited period on select Dubai flights as part of its New Year offering. The airline will also add a second flight to Dubai from New Delhi from the middle of this month. The special fares will be valid for five days from January 07, 2013 on select Gulf routes. The new fares are part of the Dubai Shopping Festival. These special Economy fares will be applicable on flights operating from Mumbai to Abu Dhabi, Bahrain and Kuwait, while there will be attractive fares from Kochi to Muscat, Doha, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi. These fares are also available from Delhi to Abu Dhabi and Thiruvananthapuram to Muscat. While a Mumbai-Abu Dhabi two-way ticket comes at as low as Rs 16,775, a one-way ticket is available for Rs 8,272, inclusive of all taxes. Similarly, a two-way Kochi-Muscat ticket is priced at Rs 21,790, and a New Delhi-Abu Dhabi two way ticket is up for grabs for Rs 24,773. As a part of its expansion into the Gulf sector, Jet will introduce a second daily frequency on the Delhi-Dubai route from January 18, 2013. The airline will deploy its new generation Boeing 737-800 on the route.

Cardiac Science Corporation, a group firm of Opto Circuits, will supply Powerheart G3 automated external defibrillators (AEDs) to all Chicago-area Metra commuter trains and other Metra facilities by end of this month. External defibrillators are medical devices that diagnose life-threatening abnormal heart rhythms, or cardiac arrhythmia, and deliver electrical energy to the heart to restore its normal rhythm. Opto Circuits India is a multinational medical device company headquartered out of Bengaluru, India. The company designs, develop, manufacture, market and distribute a range of medical products that are used by healthcare establishments in more than 150 countries.

Tata Motors, part of Tata business conglomerate, has introduced a warranty of 4 years on its entire range of heavy trucks with 25 tonnes and higher GVW (Gross Vehicle Weight). The 4-year standard warranty is applicable on vehicles sold after 6th January, 2013. Tata motors is the first company in India to offer standard warranty of 4 years on heavy trucks which includes  full range of tractor trailers, multi-axle trucks & tippers of 25 tonnes GVW & above and covers the vehicle's driveline (engine, gear box & rear axle) as a standard offer. Further, the warranty on rest of the product range has been enhanced from 18 months to 24 months. The company has designed the 4-year standard warranty based on the lifecycle cost study of over 15 lakh Tata trucks and tippers operating all over the country, in varied terrain and loading conditions. The 4-year warranty is supported by Tata Motors' extensive dealership and service network of over 1,300 touch points.

Mahanagar Telephone Nigam (MTNL), state owned telecom firm which operates in Delhi and Mumbai, has delisted the company's American Depository Shares (ADSs) from New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) with effect from December 31, 2012. Besides, the same has now been listed on OTCQX International Market and the trading of ADSs on OTCQX International Market has commenced with effect from January 02, 2013. MTNL was set up by the Government of India to upgrade the quality of telecom services, expand the telecom network, and introduce new services and to raise revenue for telecom development needs of India's key metros -- Delhi and Mumbai.

Gujarat-based Elecon Engineering Company's material handling equipment and transmission division has procured two orders worth Rs 18.36 crore. The company has bagged Rs 12.21 crore order from NMDC for the supply, erection and commissioning of lump ore reclaimer including initial spares to client's Bacheli Complex Project and second of Rs 6.15 crore from Madras Cements for supply of material handling equipment and other spares for grinding unit project. 

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