Morning briefing: Cabinet may take up proposal for 6% dearness allowance hike today

GN Staff | September 9, 2015



The union cabinet is likely to consider on Wednesday a proposal to increase dearness allowance to 119 per cent from 113 per cent, which if cleared will potentially benefit over one crore government employees and pensioners. The proposed DA hike will take effect from July 1. As per the agreed formula, the DA rate increase is an average of 12-month consumer price index-industrial workers from July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2015.

India’s oil imports at 80% of total requirements, crude oil below $50
India’s oil imports for the first four months of this fiscal year were at a massive 80% of total oil requirements. In 2004-05, they were 71%; although lower, they were still substantial. Gas imports are increasing, too. Gas (liquefied natural gas) imports in 2008-09 stood at 29% of total gas requirements and are expected to touch a considerable 41% in 2014-15. Meanwhile, the Brent global crude benchmark was trading at $49.75 per barrel at 0313 GMT, 23 cents up from its last settlement after jumping 4 per cent in the previous session. Oil prices have fallen almost 60 per cent since June 2014 on a global supply glut, with prices seesawing in recent weeks as concerns about a slowing Chinese economy caused turmoil in global stock markets, while production remained near record highs.

Sensex jumps 400 points as Asian stocks climb
Indian stocks climb, taking cues from a sharp rise in global equity markets.The 30-share S&P BSE Sensex jumps 390.17 points, or 1.54%, to 25,708.04, while the 50-share Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) is up 115.40 points, or 1.5%, to 7,803.65 at 9.30 am. Earlier in the day, Asian shares picked up  after upbeat German economic data powered gains in US and European markets. Major Wall Street indices all logged gains of more than 2% overnight.European stocks also had a banner day on news Germany’s imports and exports hit record highs in value terms in July. Chinese shares rose late on Tuesday after digesting a bigger-than-expected drop in imports.

E-Version of collected works of Mahatma Gandhi launched

Union minister Arun Jaitley yesterday launched the electronic version of the Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi (CWMG) in English. The Hindi version of CWMG would be digitised soon. The CWMG took about 38 years in the making (1956-1994). They are a series of 100 volumes, running into over 55,000 pages, intricately connected across the series, as an integrated whole.

20 Indians killed in Saudi strikes in Yemen

A Saudi-led alliance killed at least 20 Indian nationals in air strikes on fuel smugglers at a Yemeni port on Tuesday, fishermen said, and more foreign troops were reported to be arriving to intensify the campaign against Houthi forces. The Houthi-run state news agency Saba also said that 15 citizens were killed in air strikes on Sanaa, and medical sources said at least 15 civilians were killed in similar attacks on Monday.

Congress may not allow special session of parliament
The Congress Working Committee has virtually delivered a blow to the government's show of eagerness to call an extended stint of the monsoon session of Parliament to pass the GST bill. After the CWC meeting, the AICC has made it clear that the party was determined to carry on with demand that Parliament can function only if the prime minister sacks external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje over the LaMO issue and Madhya Pradesh chief minister  Shivraj Singh Chouhan over the Vyapam scam. The party made it clear that on the GST bill, its support would depend on the government accepting the party's proposed amendments.

Rakesh Maria retained as investigation chief in Sheena Bora murder case
Faced with questions over Rakesh Maria's removal as he was investigating the Sheena Bora murder case, the Maharashtra government has tried to do some damage control. Late on Tuesday evening, additional chief secretary (home) KP Bakshi said that while Maria has been promoted as DG (Home Guards), he would still be heading the investigation into the Sheena Bora murder case. "Government has decided that the Sheena Bora murder case investigation will continue to be monitored by Rakesh Maria even after his elevation and transfer," said a message sent by Bakshi.

Reliance Jio asks handset partners to Make in India

Make in India is making connection.Reliance Jio Infocomm has asked handset manufacturing partners to make 4G phones in India. If the mobile makers agree on a configuration with the Reliance Industries unit, then the retail unit of the Mukesh Ambani-led group will buy all the handsets they make in India. Reliance has approached mobile handset makers Micromax, Lava, Karbonn, Intex, and Lenovo among others to partner on this project. Jio has signed deals with Chinese handset makers Huawei, ZTE, Alcatel OneTouch (TCL Communications), CK-Telecom and Beijing Tianyu Communication Equipment-owned K-Touch for procurement of smartphones for the company's consumer electronics brand, ReConnect.

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