OPINION, P6 ECONOMY, P2 MARKETS, P10 EDITORIAL FARM BILLS STRESSED ASSETS Harsimrat Kaur Badal, lone SAD member, quits Modi Cabinet Opportunities may not be as large as made out to be: Rajnish Sudarshan TV’s UPSC Jihad is abhorrent, but isn’t the only culprit Andhra HC's gag order on Amaravati land FIR is unfortunate, it prevents media from doing its job NEW DELHI, FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 18, 2020 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK. APP AVAILABLE ON APP STORE & PLAYSTORE WWW.FINANCIALEXPRESS.COM READ TO LEAD VOL. XLVI NO. 172, 18 PAGES, `6.00 (PATNA `6.00, RAIPUR `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: 38,979.85 ▼ 323.00 NIFTY: 11,516.10 ▼ 88.45 NIKKEI 225: 23,319.37 ▼ 156.16 HANG SENG: 24,340.85 ▼ 384.78 `/$: 73.65 ▼ 0.13 `/€: 86.97 ▲ 0.30 BRENT: $42.19 ▼ $0.03 GOLD: `51,495 ▼ `302 A-LISTER AUTOS ● ITDC HOTEL SALE Court orders FIR against ex-minister Shourie Finmin dampens It’s a dream debut for Happiest Minds GST relief hope URVASHI VALECHA Mumbai, September 17 Vehicles in high tax bracket world over, India not an outlier; firms told to reduce hefty royalty outgo to lower costs Arun Shourie PRESS TRUST OF INDIA Jodhpur, September 17 FE BUREAU New Delhi, September 17 A SPECIAL COURT here has asked the CBI to file cases against former Union minister Arun Shourie and the then disinvestment secretary Pradip Baijal over the sale of an ITDC hotel, allegedly at a loss of `244 crore to the exchequer. The CBI court also directed the filing of cases against three others associated with the sale twodecadesbackofLaxmiVilas Palace Hotel in Udaipur,during the term of the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led NDAgovernment at the Centre. Shourie,whowas the minister in charge of divestment when the property, owned by public-sector India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC), was sold to Bharat Hotels,a private company. ThecourtrecalledShourie’s backgroundasajournalistwho has spoken against corruption in debates and interviews. THE FINANCE MINISTRY seems to be having second thoughts on whether to accede to a growing demand from the autoindustryforgoodsandservicestax (GST) rate cuts,given the hole it might burn in the revenues. Instead of asking for GST relief,the Indian auto companies must try and lowercostsbyreducingassortedroyalty paymentstoforeignparentsandusethe resultant room to drive sales via price cuts, a ministry official said, on condition of anonymity. Citing a pick-up in sales of some auto segments like PVs andtwo-wheelersinAugust,hesaidthe sectorwas alreadyon a revival path. FE BUREAU Receipts fell in FY20; refunds rose After peaking in FY17, the demonetisaton year, direct tax refunds were on the decline. But the refunds rose again in FY20. Result of last-ditch efforts by taxman to boost revenue? FY20 saw an odd, y-o-y decline in tax revenue growth. 12 8 4 0 14.1 8.64 1.22 FY16 16 10.12 Refunds Refunds as % of collections (RHS) 20 12.98 11.54 FY17 *Before refunds; #till January end 12.25 13.2 1.61 FY18 Special Feature ‘Brands have cut budgets, retainer fees by 20-30%’ Subhash Kamath, CEO, BBH and Publicis Worldwide, India, and chairman of ASCI, talks about dwindling ad budgets, regulating digital ads, and more ■ BrandWagon, P9 ~14 12.4 1.52 1.62 Indian auto makers shell out large amounts as royalty to their foreign parents. Maruti Suzuki, for example, reported royalty payments of `3,817 crore to Suzuki Motor Corp in FY20 PRESS TRUST OF INDIA Mumbai, September 17 per share against the issue price of `166 apiece and an opening price of `350 a piece. OWINGTO surging Covid cases,the Mumbai police have extended prohibitory orders restricting movement of people till September 30. However, no new restrictions have been imposed,the policestressed. “The order issued under section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedureisamereextensionofourprevious order (issued on August 31) and no new-fresh restrictions have been imposed,”city police commissioner Param BirSingh said. Continued on Page 2 Continued on Page 2 Intra-day on NSE (`) 410 Previous close: 166 390 370.95 370 350 330 350 Open Close SpeakingataCIIeventinlateAugust, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman kept alive the auto industry’s hopes for GSTcuts.Respondingtoanobservation attheeventontheneedforloweringthe rate on two-wheelers, she said it was “indeed a good suggestion,as this category is neither a luxury,nor a sin good andhencemeritsaraterevision”. Continued on Page 2 RBI ONThursdayannouncedoutrightbond purchases after a six-month hiatus in its effort to support record borrowings by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, reports Bloomberg. The Reserve BankofIndiawillbuy`10,000croreofdebt on September24,it said in a statement. ■ Report on Page 10 Direct taxes 16 Thanks to a series of rate cuts, the weighted average GST rate is already 11.6%, way below revenue neutral rate of 15.3%; little hope for further rate cuts sans a holistic recast of tax’s structure HAPPIESTMINDSTECHNOLOGIES, foundedbyAshokSootain2011,on Thursday made a dream debut on theexchangeswithlistingdaygains of a stupendous123%. The Bengaluru-based IT services company’s listing day gains beat those of Avenue Supermarts, which had also seen a bumper listing in 2017, with the shares rising 114%. Shares of Happiest Minds Technologies ended Thursday at `371 Sec 144 curbs in Mumbai extended till Sept 30 RBI returns to bond purchases after six months Continued on Page 2 Direct taxes collected* (` lakh crore) BUILDING UPA CASE Happiest Minds Tech RISING CASES FY19 1.71# FY20 15 10 5 0 Source: CGA, CBDT 10-year bond yield (%) 6.03 6.06 Intra-day, Sept 17 6.03 6.00 5.98 5.97 5.94 Previous close: 5.99 Open Close ● PERSONAL BANKRUPTCY SC dismisses SBI’s appeal against Anil Ambani INDU BHAN New Delhi, September 17 THE SUPREME COURT on Thursday dismissed the appeal of State Bank of India (SBI) seeking vacation of the stay granted by the Delhi High Court on personal bankruptcy proceedings initiated by the bank against Reliance Group chairman Anil Ambani. SBI's case is that it had granted credit facilities to Reliance Communications (RCom) and Reliance Infratel (RTIL) in 2015 and the same were personallyguaranteed by Ambani pursuant to a deed of personal guarantee of September 23, 2016, furnished by him. SBI had granted a total loan of `1,200 crore to the two firms. The SC Bench led byJustice LNageswara Rao refused to interfere with the high court’s August 27 order. Continued on Page 2 ● DAMAGES SOUGHT QuickPicks Blocking fundraise: Shapoorji Pallonji US firm files lawsuit against Group seeks damages from Tatas THE SHAPOORJI Pallonji Group, which has been in a bitter legal battle with the Tatas since October 2016, has sent legal notices seeking damages from Tata Sons and its board members for "illegally blocking" the Mistry family's bid to raise funds by pledging Tata Group shares, reports fe Bureau in New Delhi. PAGE 4 Govt permits up to 74% FDI under automatic route in defence sector THE GOVERNMENT has permitted FDI of up to 74% under the automatic route in the defence sector to attract overseas investors, according to a press note issued by DPIIT on Thursday, reports PTI. However, foreign investments in the sector would be subject to scrutiny on the grounds of national security and the government reserves the right to review them. PAGE 2 HDFC Bank SHRITAMA BOSE Mumbai, September 17 US-BASED ROSEN Law Firm has filed a class action suit against HDFC Bank on behalf of its shareholders, alleging that the lender had misled its investors. The company has sought damages from the bank and sought a trial by jury, according to a copy of the complaint available on Rosen’s website. Continued on Page 2 TIKTOK SALE Oracle-ByteDance deal awaits Trump nod,China consent YINGZHI YANG & BRENDA GOH Beijing, September 17 CHINAWILLNEED to approve ByteDance’s proposed deal with Oracle Corp foritsTikTok app,the Chinese companysaid onThursday,indicatinghowits bid to stave off a ban in the US could be further complicated. Oraclehassubmittedaproposal to the Trump administration that will allow it to become a technology partner TUG OF WAR ■ Oracle proposal that will allow it to become TikTok's technology partner awaiting Trump administration approval in the TikTok app, as ByteDance hopes to head off a Trump order that it divestTikTok’s US operations. The proposal envisages ■ Trump has raised questions about ByteDance's plans to keep majority stake in TikTok's US operations ■ China, late in August, updated its export control rules to give it a say over transfer of technology to foreign buyers making TikTok Global a USheadquartered company. But US President Donald Trump on Wednesday raised questions about ByteDance's planstokeepamajoritystakein TikTok’sUSoperationsandsaid hedidnotfavourthe ideaofthe Chinese firm retaining control, aftersix Republican lawmakers urgedhimtorejecttheproposal. Trump has said he would banTikTok in the US as earlyas Sunday if ByteDance does not complyamid US concerns that the company could pass user data to China’s Communist Party government. Continued on Page 2 New Delhi Mumbai mayhem (As cases rise, the city finds it is running out of capacity once again) Cases (’000) 200 150 100 50 0 Deaths (RHS) 12,000 Infections 8,000 Deaths July 1 4,000 Sept 17 0 Occupied capacity (%) 69.3 91.4 94.3 Beds ICUs Ventilators
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