OPINION, P8 ECONOMY, P2 EDITORIAL Careful with CBI probe of bankers, it could hit lending INTERNATIONAL, P14 BISWAJIT DHAR OIL AND GAS END OF AN ERA The US misrepresents India's agri support at WTO while amping up its own Ben van Beurden-led Shell to exit PMT fields, won’t seek PSC extension Vodafone boss Colao hands over to protege Read MUMBAI, WEDNESDAY, MAY 16, 2018 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK. APP AVAILABLE ON APP STORE & PLAYSTORE WWW.FINANCIALEXPRESS.COM READ TO LEAD VOLUME XXXXXV NO. 359, 20 PAGES, `7.00 P U B L I S H E D F R O M : A H M E D A B A D , B E N G A L U R U , C H A N D I G A R H , C H E N N A I , H Y D E R A B A D , K O C H I , K O L K ATA , L U C K N O W, M U M B A I , N E W D E L H I , P U N E SENSEX: 35,543.94 ▼ 12.77 NIFTY: 10,801.85 ▼ 4.75 NIKKEI 225: 22,818.02 ▼ 47.84 HANG SENG: 31,152.03 ▼ 389.05 `/$: 68.11 ▼ 0.59 `/€: 80.96 ▼ 0.05 BRENT: $78.97 ▲ $0.74 GOLD: `31,342.00 ▼ `85.00 UNPAID DUES ASSEMBLY POLLS Karnataka is left in a state of flux IN THE NEWS April trade deficit rises to $13.7 billion INDIA'S EXPORTS rose by 5.17% year-on-year to $25.9 billion in April on the back of a good show by sectors like engineering, pharmaceuticals and chemicals, according to commerce ministry data, reports PTI. Imports during the month were valued at $39.6 billion, up 4.6% over April 2017. The gap between imports and exports, or the trade deficit, was marginally higher at $13.7 billion during April 2018, compared with $13.24 billion in April 2017, the data showed. Merchandise exports were in the negative zone in March 2018. Oil imports were valued at $10.4 billion, an increase of 41.45% over April 2017. BJP single largest party but short of majority; JD(S) stakes claim to power with Congress support ● ESSAR STEEL BID Arcelor transfers `7,000 cr to escrow a/c SHAMIK PAUL Mumbai, May 15 JOHNSON TA Bengaluru, May 15 KARNATAKAPLUNGED INTO uncertainty and the spotlight turned on the Raj Bhavan in Bengaluruafternosingleparty crossed the halfway mark in the state assembly elections, the results of which was a roller-coaster ride much of Tuesday. The BJPwith 104 seats and eight short of a simple majority emerged as the single largest partybut the Congress, in second position with 78 seats,moved quicklyto extend support to the JD(S) which, with 38 seats, staked claim to form the government. The Congress offered unconditional support to the JD(S) and approached governor Vajubhai Vala to form the new government. The BJP too NCLT admits Ericsson plea for RCom’s insolvency independent MLAs, the BJP was in a bit of a spot this time — the ‘others’ are only three, including one from the BSP. ARCELORMITTAL, ONE of the two key contenders for the bankrupt Essar Steel, is understood to have transferred about `7,000croreintoaStateBankof India escrow account towards paymentofduesofUttamGalva andKSSPetroninanattemptto makeitsbidforEssarSteeleligible,banking sources told FE. A week ago, Essar Steel’s committee of creditors (CoC) had notified the two bidders, ArcelorMittal and Numetal, that theywould be given seven days’timetoclearalloutstanding dues of companies in which they were promoters. The deadline for repaying the dues ended on Tuesday, bankers said.Sources said that the offer for the payment of dues contains certain caveats. Continued on Page 2 Continued on Page 2 Congress’ Siddaramaiah and HD Kumaraswamy of the JD(S) BJP CONGRESS (+75) (-43) 104 78 MAJORITY: 113 222/224 TOTAL SEATS approached the governor and stated that the party had emerged as the single largest one in the polls. But unlike 2008 when it had 110 seats and rode to power after winning over five JD(S) + OTHERS (-2) (-20) 38 2 JD(S)+ includes 1 BSP seat; gain/loss since 2013 in brackets BLOOMBERG Mumbai, May 15 A TRIBUNAL ORDERED Anil Ambani’s Reliance Communications be placed under insolvency proceedings, jeopardising the company’s proposed $3.7-billion asset sale to Reliance Jio Infocomm. The Mumbai bench of the NationalCompanyLawTribunal on Tuesday accepted a petition from the Indian unit of network-equipment maker Ericsson,which is seeking to recover SETBACK TO DEAL WITH JIO ■ Ericsson says RCom and its subsidiaries owe it `1,156 crore ■ In December, RJio had agreed to buy a clutch of wireless assets from RCom ■ RCom had said its debt of `45,000 crore will be reduced through sale to Jio ● NIRAV MODI FALLOUT `1,160 crore in unpaid dues. RCom can appeal the verdict withatribunalinNewDelhi.The company and two of its subsidiaries will decide on the next course of action after studying thedetailedorder,RComsaidin an exchange filing. The court order sets back RCom’s planned sale of airwaves, towers and fibre assets toJio,ownedbyAmbani’solder brother and India’s richest man,Mukesh Ambani. Continued on Page 2 ● BHUSHAN STEEL PNB posts record loss Tata Steel’s resolution plan gets NCLTnod of `13,417 cr in Q4 PUNJAB NATIONAL BANK (PNB) on Tuesday reported a net loss of `13,417 crore in Q4FY18, the largest quarterly loss in Indian banking history,as the withdrawal of restructuring schemes for stressed assets and the Nirav Modi fraud took their toll,reports fe Bureau in Mumbai,against a profit of `262 crore last year.Provisions quadrupled on a y-o-y to `20,353 crore.PNB said liabilities from letters of understanding and foreign letters of credit involving Modi and Mehul Choksi-related accounts that became due up to March 31 came to `6,586 crore. Page 10 Allahabad Bank strips CEO ofall powers, P10 THE NATIONAL COMPANY Law Tribunal (NCLT) on Tuesday accorded approval to Tata Steel’s resolution plan for taking over Bhushan Steel, dismissing a plea filed by the employees of the latter opposing the former’s bid, and also imposed a fine of `1 lakh, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi.The tribunal also dismissed the plea of engineering and construction major Larsen & Toubro,which had sought higher priority in recovery of loan and imposed a fine of `1 lakh on it too.A plea by Bhushan Energy to continue its power purchase agreement with Bhushan Steel was also rejected. Page 6
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