OPINION, P6 COMPANIES, P4 ASHOK GULATI & BB SINGH Existing govt schemes don’t give migrants gainful employment INTERNATIONAL, P8 SUNIL JAIN ‘REPAIR’ YEAR AMID ALLEGATIONS Instead of demonising Modi for the blunders he has made, the need is to unite and act against Covid Tech Mahindra Q4 net profit jumps 34.6% to `1,081 cr UK PM Boris Johnson denies saying 'let the bodies pile high' LUCKNOW, TUESDAY, APRIL 27, 2021 VOL XIV NO. 18, 12 PAGES, `6.00 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER & FACEBOOK. APP AVAILABLE ON APP STORE & PLAYSTORE WWW.FINANCIALEXPRESS.COM READ TO LEAD 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: 48,386.51 ▲ 508.06 NIFTY: 14,485.00 ▲ 143.65 NIKKEI 225: 29,126.23 ▲ 105.60 HANG SENG: 28,952.83 ▼ 125.92 `/$: 74.73 ▲ 0.29 `/€: 90.41 ▲ 0.04 BRENT: $64.78 ▼ $1.33 GOLD: `47,285 ▼ `247 IN THE NEWS Auto industry veteran Jagdish Khattar no more COVID CRISIS FORMER MD of Maruti Suzuki India Jagdish Khattar passed away on Monday following cardiac arrest, people close to him said, reports PTI. Khattar (79), an exbureaucrat, was considered one of the most high-profile leaders of the automotive industry, laying the foundation for Maruti's growth. Serum, Bharat Biotech expected to lower pricing of their vaccines FCI's wheat purchases may touch record EVEN AS sections of the farming community are fearing that new farm laws would destroy the minimum support price (MSP) system, the country is geared up for record wheat procurement at MSP in the current rabi season, reports Prabhudatta Mishra in New Delhi. Non-food credit growth falls further to 5.4% THE GROWTH in non-food credit fell further in April, clocking 5.4% y-o-y for the fortnight ended April 9 from 5.54% in the previous fortnight, reports fe Bureau in Mumbai. It coincides with the fresh surge in Covid cases. Special Feature ` complaint Cashless facility must at network hospitals: Irdai Insurers have to ensure availability of cashless facilities to policyholders for treatment of Covid-19 at network hospitals, says insurance regulator ■ Personal Finance, P9 Govt to vaccine makers: Cut prices Relatives of Covid patients wait to refill oxygen cylinders in New Delhi on Monday; people wait to get vaccinated in Mumbai `1,200 per dose for private hospitals. The Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII), the world’s largest vaccine maker in terms of volume, has announced a price of `400 per dose for its Covid-19 vaccine, Covishield, for state governments and `600 per dose for private hospitals. Continued on Page 2 Covid drug: Natco seeks nod for Ph-3 trials DRUGMAJORNatcoPharma onMondaysaidithassought approval from the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) in India for phase-III clinical trialofMolnupiravircapsules forthetreatmentofCovid-19 positivepatients,reportsPTI. Natco Pharma said pre-clinical data have shown that Molnupiravirhasbroadantiinfluenza activity, including highly potent inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 replication. ■ Report on Page 4 FUNDRAISING INDRONIL ROYCHOWDHURY Kolkata, April 26 EVEN AS THE country reels under shortage of oxygen SAIL is unable to despatch all of its stockpile of 11,000 tonnes of oxygen, for want of enough tankers. SAIL’s chief general managerChinmoySamajdartoldFE the company has further enhanceditsoxygenproducing capacityof 860 tonnes a dayin view of the present Covid situation but despatches are dependent on the availability of tankers. Samajdar refrained from commenting onwhether the CPSE was looking for UpGrad gets $120-m funding from Temasek TN allows Sterlite plant to reopen to produce oxygen enhanced logistics support to clear their stock pile, but said thecompanyasofdatehassufficientstockofoxygenandwas ready to despatch them if tankers were made available. “The oxygen we produce is 99.7% pure and can be medically used. SAIL at present has sufficient stock of of 11,000 tonnes andwe are despatching 950 tonne to 1050 tonnes a day,”Samajdar said. SAIL produces liquid oxygen from its plants at Durgapur, Burnpur, Bokaro, Bhilai and Rourkella with a cumulative capacity of 729 tonnes a day. VEDANTA-OWNED Sterlite Copper smelting plant at Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu has been allowedtore-openpartiallyfor four months only to produce medical oxygen,in thewake of the severe shortage, reports fe Bureau in Chennai. A government-appointed panelwillmonitorthefunctioningoftheplant,andcopperproductionwillnotbeallowed.Productionatthe unitwashaltedin 2018 amid protests by locals over environmental pollution andtheconsequenttragicdeath of 13 protesters who died as a result of policefiring. Continued on Page 2 Detailed report on Page 4 The US has identified supplies oftherapeutics, test kits,ventilators, and PPE thatwill immediately be made available for India ■ It is also pursuing options to provide oxygen generation and related supplies on an urgent basis The Biden administration had come under criticism for not releasing surplus Covid-19vaccines to India tance to the United States as our hospitals were strained early in the pandemic, the United States is determined to help India in its time of need,” Emily Horne, spokesperson of the US NSA said after the phone call between Sullivan and Doval. Continued on Page 2 Blackstone seeks control of Mphasis, to pay up to $2.8 bn UPGRAD ON MONDAY said it hasraised$120millioninfunding from Singapore-based Temasek.The investment, which the company claimstobeitsfirstexternal funding, reportedly values the ed-tech firm at an estimated $575-$675 million.UpGraddidnotdisclose thevaluation. The firm will deploy the bulkofthefreshcapitaltofund its global expansion and PRADEEP KURUP & GANESH NAGARAJAN New Delhi, April 26 FE BUREAU New Delhi, April 26 broaden its reach within India. Part of the funds will also be used to pursue relevant M&A opportunities and widen the graduate and post-graduate degree portfolio in India. UpGrad operates in the higher education segment and offers courses inspecialisedbranchesof study, including MBA, BBA, data science, machine learning, marketing and law in partnershipwithaslewofglobal and local universities. already completed the 12/15year tenure as bank chiefs will be allowed to complete their current term. Uday Kotak, promoter of Kotak Mahindra Bank, is at present the longest-serving chief of a bank, having assumed charge at the time of the bank’s establishment in 2003.InDecember,thecentral bank had approved Kotak’s reappointment as MD & CEO for a three-year term beginning January 1,2021. BLACKSTONE GROUP HAS OFFERED to take a controlling stake in Indian IToutsourcing services provider Mphasis in a deal worth as much as $2.8 billion, as demand for cloud computing surges amid the pandemic. Funds managed by Blackstone Capital Partners VIII and BlackstoneCapitalPartnersAsia haveteamedupwithlong-term investors including Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and UC Investments to take a majority stake in Mphasis, the private equity firm said in a statement on Monday. They’re buying a 55.31% stake from Blackstone Capital Partners VI fund. That agreementtriggeredanopenofferfor an additional 26% stake in the Indianfirmat`1,677.16apiece, which amounts to as much as `8,262 crore (around $1.1 billion).The offer price is a 1.1% discount to the closing share priceonFriday.Thestockgained as much as 6.5% in Mumbai afterthe offer. Blackstone’smovetoraiseits stake in Mphasis is in syncwith the US asset manager’s plans to boost investment in India. Continued on Page 2 Continued on Page 2 Continued on Page 2 Tenure of private bank chiefs must end in 15 years, says RBI THE POST OF MD & CEO of a private bank cannot be held by the same individual for more than 15 years at a stretch, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said on Monday in a set of instructions for banks. In case of a promoter-CEO, the tenure will be capped at 12 years. RBI did clarify,though,that in the interest of a smooth transition to the new requirements, incumbents who have SAIL unable to despatch oxygen for want of tankers THE US HAS assured India that it will immediately provide the specific raw materials required for manufacturing the Covishield vaccine, with a topWhiteHouseofficialsaying that the Biden administration was “working around the clock” to deploy all resources and supplies to bolster the country’s fight against the deadly Covid-19 spike. The Biden administration has come undercriticismfrom several quarters, including from members and supporters of the Democratic Party, for notreleasingsurplusCovid-19 vaccines to India when the country is experiencing its worst-everpublic health crisis. India has urged the US to supply the raw materials for manufacturing the Covishield vaccine. Expressing deep sympathy for the people of India following the recent spike in Covid19 cases, US National Security Advisor (NSA) Jake Sullivan, in a telephonic call with his Indian counterpart Ajit Doval on Sunday,affirmedAmerica’s solidaritywith India. “Just as India sent assis- US PresidentJoe Biden andVicePresident Kamala Harris have assured India ofproviding all assistance ● RAISING STAKE NEW NORMS FE BUREAU Mumbai, April 26 US to rush vaccine raw materials, other supplies to India LALIT K JHA Washington, April 26 PAYAL BANERJEE New Delhi, April 26 THECENTRALGOVERNMENT on Monday asked the Serum Institute and Bharat Biotech to lower prices of their Covid-19 vaccines amid criticism from various states who accused the companies of profiteering during such a majorcrisis. The issue ofvaccine pricing was discussed at a meeting chaired by Cabinet secretary Rajiv Gauba. Now, the two companies are expected to come up with revised pricing for theirvaccines. The Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech has fixed the price of its Covid-19 vaccine, Covaxin, at `600 per dose for state governments and at HELPING HAND From the directive In the interest of a smooth transition, incumbents who have already completed the 12/15-year tenure as bank chiefs to be allowed to complete current term The existing norms on the upper age limit for MD & CEO and WTDs in private banks to continue; no person to be allowed to hold these posts beyond the age of 70 years MANY FIRSTS Nomadland wins big at diversity-packed Oscars JILL SERJEANT Los Angeles, April 26 Nomadland, the story of van dwellers in America, won the bestpictureOscarandtwoother Academy Awards on a triumphantnightforwomenthatalso sawareturntoHollywoodglamouraftera longpandemicshutdown.Inamajorupset,Britain’s Anthony Hopkins won the best actortrophyforhisroleasaman battlingdementiainTheFather. The Oscar had been widely expected to go to the late Chad- KEYWINNERS ■ BEST PICTURE & BEST DIRECTOR: Chloe Zhao ■ BEST ACTRESS: Frances McDormand (Nomadland) (Nomadland) ■ BEST ACTOR: Anthony Hopkins (The Father) wick Bosemanforhisfinal film, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. ChinanativeChloeZhaowas named best directorforSearchlightPictures’Nomadland,making her the first Asian woman and only the second woman ever to take home the trophy. KathrynBigelowwasthefirstin 2010. Zhao thanked the nomadic community for“teaching us the power of resilience and hope and reminding us what true kindnesslooks like.” Continued on Page 2 Lucknow
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