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Major News and Events of 05 March 2015

What Happened on 05 March 2015


Gulshan Rai becomes New Cyber Security Chief of India

Prime Minister’s Office has appointed Gulshan Rai, cyber security expert, as the new Cyber Security Chief for combating increasing online threats in India. The new special secretary for cyber security, Gulshan Rai, will work directly under the PMO. Before this assignment, Rai was the head of Department of Electronics and Information Technology’s Computer Emergency Response Team. Reports say that he has an experience of 25 years in the field of IT spanning over IT Act for eCommerce, e-governance, cyber security, legal framework, and many more. Reports point out that he may also head National Cyber Coordination Centre.

India had a Good Day at All England Open Badminton Championships

Indian women shuttlers had great day at the All England Open Badminton Championships yesterday as Jwala Gutta-Ashwini Ponnappa duo and ace badminton player Saina Nehwal proceeded to the 2nd round. Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa pair defeated Amelia Alicia Anscelly-Fie Cho Soong duo from Malaysia in 51 minutes in straight sets (21-12, 20-22, 21-14). Saina Nehwal, World Number 3, defeated Indonesia’s Bellaetrix Manuputty by straight sets 21-8, 21-12 in just 38 minutes. Manu Attri-B. Sumeeth Reddy duo advanced in their men’s doubles tournament by defeating Chai Biao and Hong Wei pair of China by 9-21, 21-17, 21-17.  

Kerala High Court sets aside Single Bench Verdict on ISRO Espionage Investigation Fiasco

The Bench of Kerala High Court consisting of Justice AM Shaffique and Ashok Bhushan observed that there is no requirement of taking action against Siby Mathews (former DGP) and KK Joshua (a police official), who were convicted by a single bench verdict asking government to initiate action against them for alleged lapses in the ISRO espionage investigation, on the basis of a CBI report. DGP Siby Matthews along with the other accused were the part of Special Investigation Team that was probing ISRO espionage.  Matthews challenged the single bench’s direction and stressed on the need of arresting Nambi Narayanan, former ISRO scientist.

Sun Pharma Chief becomes India's Richest Person

Dilip Sanghvi (founder and MD of largest drug-maker of India Sun Pharma) became the richest person of India by dethroning Mukesh Ambani (chief of Reliance Industries), who has been India's richest for the past eight years. Sanghvi’s valuation reached Rs 1.39 lakh crore, overtaking Mukesh Ambani’s Rs 1.38 lakh crore, yesterday when stock prices of Sun Pharma Advanced Research Company and Sun Pharma closed at record highs at end of Wednesday trading session. Shanghvi’s wealth increased by 65 per cent with respect to Mukesh Ambani’s 11 per cent in the last one year. Sun Pharma stock was trading at 1,041.00 at 3.30pm IST today.

OP Chautala and 54 Others Held Guilty by Delhi High Court on 1999 Junior Basic Teachers Recruitment Scam

Delhi High Court today upheld the 10-year jail verdict given by a trial court back in 2013 to OP Chautala, former Chief Minister of Haryana, for his alleged involvement in a multi-crore 1999 Junior Basic Teachers recruitment scam. The verdict given by Justice Siddharth Mridul also held 54 others including Ajay Chautala, son of OP Chautala, guilty in the concerned scam. Some other important persons who were found guilty by the Delhi Court include Sanjiv Kumar (former primary education director), Vidya Dhar (former CM’s officer on special duty), Sher Singh Badshami (former political adviser to OP Chautala), and others.  

Nationwide Crackdown by CBI on Rose Valley Group of Companies

A massive raid on the Rose Valley Group of Companies was carried out by Central Bureau of Investigation yesterday throughout the country as a part of its probe into the ponzi scam amounting to hundreds of crores. 150 CBI officers carried out raids in 43 locations across 11 states. Sleuths raided not only the houses of Gautam Kundu (Chairman of Rose Valley), Shibamoy Dutta (MD of the company), and 3 former directors (Ashok Kumar Saha, Ramlal Goswami, and Abir Kundu) but also the properties of Trinamool Congress MP and actor-turned-politician Tapas Pal. CBI is investigating Pal’s alleged links with Rose Valley.

Sajjad Lone Upset by 'Unimportant' Ministries; Rejects Official Car and Security

Reports have surfaced that Sajjad Lone, the ex-separatist leader, has refused to assume charge of the portfolios (Animal Husbandry and Science and Technology) given to him by the newly constituted Jammu and Kashmir government. It is learnt that Lone is not happy with the ministries he has been given charge of. Available reports point out that he also rejected the official cars and security provided by the government. While PDP has called it the internal matter between Sajjad Lone’s party and the saffron party, BJP skirted media questions by referring to the need of the party to talk to Lone.

Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan out of AAP's PAC on the insistence of Arvind Kejriwal

Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan have been voted out of Political Affairs Committee with 11 votes cast against them and 8 votes in their favour in the National Executive meeting held yesterday. Arvind Kejriwal’s intent of resignation from National Convener’s position was unanimously rejected. Sources within AAP say that AK stressed upon removing the duo from PAC and set it as a precondition to stay as National Convener of Aam Aadmi Party. Reports say that Rakesh Sinha, Ajit Jha, and Anand Kumar voted against removing the duo from PAC and two members (Krishnakant Sevada and Mayank Gandhi) abstained from voting.

Axis Bank raises $250 million by Issuing Bonds through Dubai's DIFC Branch

Axis Bank, the third largest private lender of India, announced raising funds to the tune of $250 million through issue of bonds in Dubai. DIFC branch of Axis Bank in Dubai issued these bonds, rated BBB- by both Fitch and S&P and Baa2 by Moody's. In a statement, Axis Bank said the Senior Unsecured Notes given at an issue price of 101.461 will yield 2.944 per cent. The statement also said that these notes will be US Dollar denominated bearing 3.250 per cent per annum fixed interest rate and the interest payment will be done on a semi-annual basis.

Lok Sabha passes two Major Bills by Replacing Ordinances

The lower house of parliament today passed the Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Bill and Insurance Laws (Amendment) Bill on voice vote, thereby replacing ordinances on them brought by the Narendra Modi government earlier. However, these bills, especially the Insurance Bill allowing higher foreign investment limits (increasing 26 per cent to 49 per cent) in the sector, is expected to face stiff resistance in the upper house of the parliament. However, Jayant Sinha, MoS of Finance Ministry, told media that if the insurance bill gets stuck in the RS, they will take the joint session of Parliament route to pass the bill.

Indian Bourses Oscillate between Red and Green

Indian bourses today opened with renewed enthusiasm. BSE Sensex opened above previous close of 29,380.73 at 29,436.77 and NSE Nifty opened above previous close of 8,922.65 at 8,929.40. However, the first hour gain quickly became flat due to downward pull from ICICI and major IT stocks. Technical analysts believe that the selling pressure will continue at higher levels until and unless the market consolidates at the ongoing level. At 12.06 pm IST, both Sensex and Nifty were trading in the red. While Nifty was down by 25.30 points (trading at 8897.35), Sensex was down by 44.42 points (trading at 29336.31).

Reliance Infra Acquires Pipavav Defence for Rs 2,082.3 crore

Reliance Infrastructure, led by Anil Ambani, has acquired Pipavav Defence and Offshore Engineering Ltd. for a whooping Rs 2,082.3 crore. Reliance Infrastructure Ltd. stock at 11:45 am IST was trading at 483.15 up by 8.25 points. In the last five trading days, Reliance Infra’s stock price reached a high of 505.00 (at 12.23 pm IST on March 4, 2015). However, Pipavav Defence and Offshore Eng Co Ltd.’s stock price tanked today as the deal was sealed at a lower than expected price. In the last five trading days, its stock price slumped from a high of 79.30 to 68.85 (at 11.57am IST today).