No change in policy on Chinese FDI after disengagement

Agencies
February 23, 2021

How Will India's Revised FDI Policy Impact Future Chinese Investment?

New Delhi, Feb 23: There is no change in the foreign direct investment (FDI) policy from China post disengagement and easing of tension between the two Asian giants.

The Commerce Ministry sources discarded recent media reports, which suggested that with easing of tensions at the border, India has given approval to various Chinese FDI's and many are in pipeline.

Government sources told media that there is no change or easing in FDIs from China as of now and nor it is planned in near future. All investments from China have to follow the procedures and government clearance route, nod will only be given to those investments that bear no implications on Indian security interests. Any Chinese company that potentially impinges on India's security will not be cleared.

Ever since the Galwan clash at the eastern border, India has tightened screws on Chinese investment inflows coming into India and has also banned several Chinese apps. Beijing says these actions are against the ethos and rules of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

However, the government sources say that three proposals, which are recently cleared are based in Hong Kong and one is a Japanese origin company; they are all security cleared.

Sources said clearance of investments had no linkage with disengagement as projected by some media reports. These proposals came up during the meeting on January 22 and were cleared by Ministry of Commerce and Industry on February 5.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh announced disengagement plan on February 11 in the Upper House of the Parliament.

According to Commerce Ministry sources, one company that has got the go-ahead is Nippon Paint Holdings Co. Ltd, Japan (Nippon Japan). Nippon Japan is listed on the Tokyo stock exchange.

Another FDI proposal, which is cleared is of Citizen Watches (India) Private Limited (Citizen Watches (HK) Ltd, Hong Kong (Citizen Watches Hong Kong) which is 100 per cent held by Citizen Watches Company Limited, Japan (a company listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange).

FDI proposal of Netplay Sports Private Limited is also recently cleared, according to commerce ministry sources, Netplay India is involved in sports, amusement and recreation activities. The investee company has set up a chain of sports facilities/centers for, inter alia, badminton, basketball, football. Four more sports centres are proposed to be opened with the investment funds.

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Agencies
February 23,2021

avi-7.jpg

New Delhi, Feb 23: A Delhi court on Tuesday granted bail to 22-year-old climate activist Disha Ravi, who was arrested in connection with the toolkit case.

The Delhi Police had accused Ravi of creating the online toolkit - a Google document - in support of ongoing farmers' protest in the country and claimed she is part of global conspiracy to create unrest and trigger violence in the guise of farmers' stir against the three agriculture laws.

On Monday, she was sent to one-day police custody after a three-day judicial remand and spending five days in police custody. Ravi was arrested on February 13.

The police sought her custody again yesterday saying they want to confront Ravi with other accused in the case - activists Nikita Jacob and Shantanu Muluk. She was brought to the Delhi Police Cyber Cell for the same earlier on Tuesday.

Both Muluk and Jacob were booked for alleged sedition along with Ravi, but got transit bail from Bombay High Court. They were both on Monday questioned at the Delhi Police's Cyber cell office in Dwarka, a senior police officer said. The probe agency said that they may arrest Jacob and Muluk as well in the future if there is a requirement.

Ravi was volunteering for Fridays for Future (FFF) India, an organisation founded by Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, and used to help with the organisation's event management work in Bengaluru. The contentious toolkit was first shared by Thunberg on Twitter but later deleted. However, the teen activist extended support to Ravi and tweeted, "Freedom of speech and the right to peaceful protest and assembly are non-negotiable human rights. These must be a fundamental part of any democracy." The tweet was posted with the hashtag 'StandWithDishaRavi'.

Meanwhile, Muluk on Tuesday moved a Delhi court seeking anticipatory bail. His application is likely to come up for hearing Wednesday before Additional Sessions Judge Dharmender Rana.

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News Network
February 17,2021

New Delhi, Feb 17: Petrol and diesel prices touched new highs on Wednesday after fuel rates were hiked for the ninth consecutive day. 

In Delhi, petrol and diesel prices were increased by 25 paise each. Petrol is priced at Rs 89.54 per litre, while diesel at Rs 79.95 per litre in the national capital. 

The petrol price in Mumbai has touched the Rs 96 per litre mark. In the financial capital, petrol is priced at Rs 96.00, while diesel cost Rs 86.98 per litre. 

In Bengaluru, petrol is priced at Rs 91.76 per litre, and diesel at Rs 85.09 per litre. 

The Congress on Tuesday hurled the “Modi Tax” accusation at the Centre as prices of petroleum products witnessed a sharp increase owing to steep excise duties levied on fuel.

Congress leaders claimed that the Modi government had collected over Rs 20 lakh crore by imposing additional excise duty on petrol and diesel over the past six years and eight months.

Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan last week had told Parliament that the government is not considering a reduction in excise duty to cool rates from their record highs.

Central and state taxes make up for over 61 per cent of the retail selling price of petrol and about 56 per cent of diesel.

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News Network
February 17,2021

Mumbai, Feb 17: Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, the Mumbai civic body has caught over 15 lakh people without face masks at public places in the city since April last year and collected more than Rs 30 crore as fine from them, officials said on Wednesday.

Out of these offenders, 13,008 were caught on Monday and a fine of Rs 26,01,600 was collected from them, a Brihnamumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) official said.

Concerned over the recent surge in Covid-19 cases in Maharashtra, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday asked citizens to strictly follow government-mandated guidelines on masks and social distancing or be prepared to face another round of lockdown.

The BMC has been imposing a fine of Rs 200 for not wearing a face mask in public places.

From April 1, 2020, to February 15 this year, the BMC caught 15,16,398 people without face masks and collected a total of Rs 30,69,09,800 from them, civic officials said.

As per the BMC data, the highest number of 1,08,069 people were caught without face masks in Mumbai's K-West ward, which includes areas like Juhu, Andheri (West) and Versova.

Besides, the lowest number of 25,847 offenders were found in M-East ward, which comprises Anushakti Nagar, Deonar, Cheetah Camp and Shivaji Nagar areas.

The BMC has repeatedly appealed to citizens to follow all Covid-19 protocols, including wearing of face mask, maintaining social distance and sanitising hands regularly.

Of late, the city has been witnessing a spike in daily Covid-19 cases, and some civic wards have issued letters to housing societies under their jurisdiction and instructed them to follow the Covid-19 guidelines, a civic official said.

"At present, the M-west ward is reporting highest daily cases, which is a matter of concern, and there are chances that we might have to impose local lockdown measures," said a notice issued to society in the M-West ward.

The notice further said sealing of buildings/ societies having a high prevalence of positivity has been started in the ward.

"If the same is observed in your society, the same restrictions with sealing can be imposed in your society," the notice warned.

In the notice, the civic body also instructed housing societies to restrict the entry of outsiders to a minimum, including domestic help and milk delivery persons.

It asked the housing societies take measures like thermal screening and if a positive case is found, then the family members should follow strict quarantine guidelines for 14 days and get tested compulsorily.

Any other symptomatic person in the society should also get checked for the coronavirus infection, it added.

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