Tata Steel’s Q4 loss at Rs 3,214 cr

Tata Steel has reported a consolidated loss of Rs 3,214 crore in the March 2016 quarter against a loss of Rs 5,674 crore in the year-ago period, owing to lower net sales and exceptional items impairment charges taken on restructuring of Europe operations and employee separation compensation in India.

Tata

The company, India’s largest steel producer, however, did not make any announcement on the sale of its UK assets.

Its consolidated net sales for the March 2016 quarter declined 12.5 percent on a year-on-year (y-o-y) basis to Rs 29,164 crore in the March quarter as deliveries slipped owing to the closure of some units at Tata Steel UK operations.

According to Bloomberg estimates, the company’s bottom line was expected to report a loss of Rs 979 crore, while the top line was expected to be at Rs 30,337 crore.

The firm’s revenue and net profit numbers were lower than Bloomberg estimates, but its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) at Rs 2,270 crore was higher than the estimated Rs 1,367 crore. Its Ebitda in the March 2015 quarter was Rs 1,580 crore.

While the pressure on product prices continued during the quarter both in India and Europe, our operations were more resilient across most geographies,” said Koushik Chatterjee, group executive director (finance and corporate), at Tata Steel.

The total impairment charge taken by the company in the quarter under review stood at Rs 2,858 crore. In the March 2015 quarter, it had taken an impairment charge of Rs 4,476 crore.

For 2015-16, Tata Steel’s loss increased to Rs 1,674 crore from Rs 1,388 crore in the previous year. Deliveries of the commodity stood at 6.94 million tonnes (mt), down 1.7 per cent from 7.06 mt a year ago.

The company’s Ebitda per tonne in the period under review stood at Rs 3,200 against Rs 2,700 in the corresponding period a year ago.

As on March 31, the company’s consolidated net debt stood at Rs 74,000 crore.

There is no significant repayment for both domestic and Europe operations and, hence, we do not see need for further refinancing as of now,” said Chatterjee.

The company plans to spend under Rs 10,000 crore in capital expenditure for the current financial year, most of which would be towards sustenance capital of India, southeast Asia as well as European operations. In the year ended March 2016, the company’s capex stood at Rs 11,486 crore with about Rs 3,600 crore spent on the Kalinganagar unit. Tata Steel said it would grow its domestic volumes by five or six per cent in FY17.

On the status of its UK asset sale, Chatterjee said the process is on as some bidders have sought clarification. “No bidder has been short-listed yet and evaluations are on,” he added.

Another feather in their cap: BCCI recommend Kohli for Khel Ratna, Rahane for Arjuna Award

India’s Test captain Virat Kohli may soon have another prestigious feather in his already illustrious cap.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has recommended Kohli for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, the country’s highest sporting honour. Ajinkya Rahane has also been been recommended for the prestigious Arjuna Award.

BCCI sources confirmed the development. It is after a gap of four years that a cricketer has been recommended for the Khel Ratna.

 

We have received the recommendations from the BCCI. Their names will be sent to the awards selection committee,” a sports ministry official was quoted as saying by The Times of India. 

If Kohli is selected for the honour, it will make him only the third cricketer after Sachin Tendulkar (1997-98) and MS Dhoni (2007-08) to claim the the award. If selected, Rahane will join teammates Rohit Sharma and Ravichandran Ashwin, who have been previous recipients of the awards.

According to sources Kohli will be up against Incheon Asian Games gold medallist shooter Jitu Rai, golfer Anirban Lahiri, athlete Tintu Luka and squash player Deepika Pallikal for the Khel Ratna.

The Khel Ratna carries a cash reward of Rs 7.5 lakh along with a citation, while the Arjuna award consists of a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh and a citation.

The last one year has been incredible for Kohli, who was given the Test captaincy in early 2015 after the retirement of Dhoni. He went on to lead India to a series win in Sri Lanka, and followed that up with a 3-0 win against South Africa at home, becoming the number one ranked Test nation in the process. Rahane has also improved immensely and is today one of India’s most consistent batsmen, especially in the longer format.

Kohli is enjoying a fine run of form in the ongoing Indian Premier League. He was also at the top of his game in the preceding ICC World T20, singlehandedly guiding India to wins over Australia, Pakistan and Bangladesh. For his exploits, Kohli was named the World T20 Player of the Tournament and skipper of the World T20 team. Rahane equalled the record of holding the highest number of catches in a Test innings during India’s series win against Sri Lanka last year under Kohli’s leadership.

India Overpass Collapses, Killing at Least 24 People

MUMBAI—At least 24 people were killed and 80 others injured when an under-construction overpass collapsed in the eastern Indian city of Kolkata, officials said.

We have recovered 18 dead bodies,” Mamata Banerjee, chief minister of the state of West Bengal, of which Kolkata is the capital, told reporters Thursday. At least 78 people were known to be trapped under the debris, while 16 more had been hospitalized, she added. Some 5,000 personnel were engaged in rescue work, Ms. Banerjee said.

Vehicles are trapped under the partially collapsed overpass, which was being built over a congested road in a northern part of Kolkata.

Vehicles are trapped under the partially collapsed overpass, which was being built over a congested road in a northern part of Kolkata.

The number of casualties could rise as officials try to lift a large metal truss that fell onto people and passing cars, a police official said. Some police personnel were also suspected to be trapped under the debris, an official at the Kolkata police control room said by telephone.

The overpass was being built in the city’s densely populated Bara Bazar neighborhood.

Maj. Gen. Anurag Gupta, an adviser for operations at India’s federal rescue agency, the National Disaster Management Authority, said five teams had reached the site. Rescue operations were continuing, with 63 people pulled from the debris, he said. The Indian Army is assisting, Gen. Gupta said.

Footage on local TV channels showed the bridge collapsing, with people and cars on the busy road beneath it disappearing beneath the rubble.

It is an act of God,” K. Panduranga Rao, head of human resources and administration at contractor IVRCL Ltd., the company that was building the overpass, told reporters. “We are shocked to know how this instance has happened.

India’s efforts to rapidly build critical infrastructure, including overpasses over existing, crowded roads, means construction is often undertaken without adequate precautions to isolate sites.

The overpass was being built by the Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority, a government agency tasked with building infrastructure in the city, said Soumitra Bhattacharya, director general of Kolkata’s Roads Department, a separate government agency. The road underneath the overpass was always densely crowded, he said. He declined to comment on whether regulations were followed. Officials at the development authority weren’t immediately available for comment.

The project’s construction was checked by third-party consultants as well as the government commissioning agency, the KMDA, Mr. Rao said. Some 40 employees of the firm were working on the project at the time of collapse, and two were still missing, he said.

Late Thursday, Ms. Banerjee said Kolkata police had filed a complaint against IVRCL. The police also raided and sealed three company in the city offices but didn’t find any employees there. An inquiry has been set up under the state’s top bureaucrat to investigate the accident, Ms. Banerjee said.

IVRCL grieves the loss of precious lives and injuries to people and will cooperate with the authorities in investigating this accident,” the company said in a filing to local stock exchanges. In the filing, the company said it is awaiting details on the cause of the accident and it will do “its utmost to find the causes.”

The bridge construction was the toughest of all projects undertaken by the KMDA under a federal grants program, according to information about the project on the website of contractor IVRCL. The website of the engineering and construction company, based in the southern city of Hyderabad, said construction took place in a “very congested area” that hampered the movement of heavy equipment.

Shocked & saddened by collapse of under construction flyover in Kolkata. Took stock of the situation & rescue operations,” a tweet on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s account said.

Monumental tragedy. Rescue ops on. Many feared dead,” said a tweet from the verified account of local lawmaker Derek O’Brien, a member of Parliament for West Bengal.

Budget proposal to tax EPF withdrawn

Jaitley had in his Budget proposed to tax withdrawal of 60 per cent of accumulations in the employee provident fund after April 1, 2016.

Bowing to all round attack, especially from the salaried middle class, the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday announced the withdrawal of Budget proposal on the controversial Employee Provident Fund (EPF) tax.

Making a suo-motu statement in Lok Sabha, Jaitley said that the Government would like to do a comprehensive review of the proposal in view of the representations received. “Therefore, I withdraw the proposal,” Jaitley said at the lower house.

Jaitley however said that the 40 per cent exemption accorded to National Pension System (NPS) in this year’s Budget at withdrawal stage would remain.

The 2016-17 Budget had proposed to bring 60 per cent of the EPF monies to tax at the withdrawal stage if the subscriber opts not to invest these monies in annuity plan.

This had stirred a controversy with many among the salaried class contending that such a proposal was a harsh one given that EPF monies were currently tax exempt at all three stages of contribution, accumulation and withdrawal.

Saudi-Iran spat likely to have a significant impact on India

The growing spat between Saudi Arabia and Iran following the execution of an influential Shia cleric could have repercussions for India, which has adopted a position of neutrality since it enjoys good relations with both countries.
As several of Saudi Arabia’s close allies curtailed their ties with Iran, the kingdom’s foreign minister Adel Bin Ahmed al-Jubeir flew into Islamabad this week to seek Pakistan’s support in the standoff.
The Saudi-Iran tension, with the underpinning of a SunniShia divide, is especially worrying for India since the Gulf region has vital economic and strategic significance for the country.
Additionally, the rift could see many Gulf nations with a sizable number of Indian expatriates picking sides. The region has seven million Indian nationals who account for about $40 billion of the $70 billion that India receives in remittances annually.

Saudi-Iran spat likely to have a significant impact on India

Saudi-Iran spat likely to have a significant impact on India

We have friendly relations with both countries and we would hope they are able to resolve the differences in a peaceful manner and international norms in terms of protection of diplomats are adhered to by both sides” said Vikas Swarup, the spokerperson of the ministry of external affairs.
Saudi Arabia has the maximum number of Indian passport-holders outside the country. But with oil prices falling and Saudi Arabia grappling with mounting unemployment for people under 30 who constitute 70% of its population, there are concerns that the kingdom will not remain a key employment destination for Indians for long.
India also enjoys robust security cooperation with Saudi Arabia, which has deported several most wanted terrorists such as Abu Jundal, linked to the Mumbai attacks case. Although such steps
do not in any way diminish the strategic partnership between Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, the growing security cooperation is of vital significance for India.
In the case of Iran, a sanction-free Tehran is India’s best bet in the region to advance its strategic interests, particularly with respect to Afghanistan.
Iran also holds the key for India’s ambitious connectivity plans for the oil and gas-rich Central Asian republics and to provide land-locked Afghanistan access to the sea via Iran’s Chabahar port, bringing down Kabul’s dependence on Islamabad.
But the row could also lead to some positive developments for India, which imports more than three-fourths of its energy requirements, because oil prices, already near historic lows, could head further south.
Several major Indian companies including Larsen & Toubro, Tata Consultancy Services, Tata Motors, Wipro, Infosys, Punj Lloyd, Shapoorji Pallonji, Godrej & Boyce, Air India, Jet Airways and State Bank of India also operate in Saudi Arabia.
Indian exports to the kingdom include mineral fuels and oils, chemicals, iron and steel and electric machines.

Bhushan Steel employees stage demo

Sambalpur: Resentment is preparing among representatives of Bhushan Steel at Thelakuli in the region as the organization powers supposedly rejected a few laborers without serving any notification.

Representatives of the organization under the pennant of Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh and Bhushan Mazdoor Sangh arranged a challenge outside the area collectorate here Monday. They presented an update to the sub-authority tended to the area gatherer highlighting their four-point contract of requests.

Area work officer Krushnamohan Rout and sub-gatherer Bimalendu Ray came to the challenge site and held a dialog with the instigators. Their dissent was pulled back after the authorities guaranteed them of taking measures to yield their requests.

Bhushan Steel employees stage demo

Bhushan Steel employees stage demo

The update said that over a thousand representatives have been working at the organization throughout the previous 10 years. In any case, two months back, the organization powers sacked a colossal number of representatives without refering to any reason. The powers did not serve any notification to the workers, it was charged.

Their requests incorporate reappointment of the sacked representatives, installment of their remarkable pay rates and that for the period in which they were sacked. The specialists debilitated to increase their tumult if their requests are not met.

They had additionally submitted duplicates of the update to the income divisional magistrate, and the State Governor.

The organization’s guild pioneers Radharani Panda, Nauri Nayak, Aswini Majhi, Jiten Patnaik, Sambit Kumar, Amit Singh, Pabitra Sahu and Ranjan Behera drove the dissent.

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