Meet Akash Ambani, the new boss of Reliance Jio

News Network
June 28, 2022

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The digital arm of Reliance Industries, Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd, on Tuesday, June 28, announced that Ambani would resign as the director of the company effective from 27 June.

In a regulatory filing, Reliance Jio said the company's board at a meeting on 27 June, "approved the appointment of Akash M Ambani, non-executive director, as chairman of the board of directors of the company."

Among other appointments, Pankaj Mohan Pawar will take over as the Managing Director of the company from 27 June.

Raminder Singh Gujral and KV Chowdary were appointed independent directors.

In 2021, Ambani said that his kids were taking more responsibilities as part of the leadership shift. He said he could see in his children the same spark and potential of his father Dhirubhai Ambani – Reliance’s founder – for contributing to the country's growth.

Few things to know about Akash Ambani

- Akash Ambani, who has graduated from Brown University with a major in Economics, has been closely involved with the disruptive and inclusive growth path charted by the digital services and consumer retail propositions of Reliance group and is now leading the creation of the ‘convergence dividend’ for over 500 million consumers.

- Akash has been closely involved with the creation of the digital ecosystem around Jio’s 4G proposition. He was closely involved with a team of engineers in inventing and launching an India-specs focussed Jiophone in 2017 which became quite a revolutionary device to take many people out of 2G to 4G.

- He personally led the key acquisitions made by Jio in the digital space in the last few years and has also been keenly involved with development of new technologies and capabilities including AI-ML and blockchain.

 Akash was integrally involved in the trailblazing global investments by tech majors and investors in 2020, which in many ways catapulted Jio onto the global investor map.

The Board of Directors have at their meeting held on 27 June, 2022:

(a) approved the appointment of Raminder Singh Gujral and KV Chowdary, as Additional Directors of the Company, designated as Independent Directors for a period of 5 (five) years commencing from 27 June, 2022, subject to approval of the shareholders

(b) approved the appointment of Pankaj Mohan Pawar as Managing Director of the Company for a period of five (5) years commencing from 27 June, 2022, subject to approval of the shareholders

(c) noted the resignation of Mukesh D Ambani as Director of the Company effective from close of working hours on 27 June, 2022

(d) approved the appointment of Akash M Ambani, Non-executive Director as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Company.

"In accordance with the circular dated June 20, 2018, issued by the Stock Exchanges, we hereby confirm that Raminder Singh Gujral and KV Chowdary are not debarred from holding the office of Director by virtue of any Securities and Exchange Board of India order or any other such authority," the company added.

Established in 2019, Jio Platforms, wholly-owned by RIL, is an Indian technology company.

Shares of Reliance Industries closed at 2,529.00 apieace on BSE, 1.49% higher than yesterday's close. At the NSE, it climbed by 1.50% to settle at ₹2530.00 apiece.

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News Network
August 8,2022

Patna: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has called a meeting of all Janata Dal (United) MLAs and MPs on Tuesday, leading to speculation his growing friction with the BJP may come to a head.

Chief among the many reasons why Mr Kumar is upset with the BJP, which is an alliance partner of the Janata Dal (United), or JD(U) in Bihar, has been the BJP-led central government's offer of token representation to allies as Union Ministers.

Mr Kumar's party had denied another Rajya Sabha berth last month to his former JD(U) colleague RCP Singh, who had taken a spot in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's cabinet last year without consulting Mr Kumar. Mr Singh bade farewell to the JD(U) over the Rajya Sabha snub.

"There's a conspiracy against me because I'd become union minister," said Mr Singh, a former Indian Administrative Service officer who was once the national president of JD(U). "I'll just say that there's no cure to jealousy," he said while leaving the JD(U) yesterday. "Nitish Kumar will not become Prime Minister in any of his seven lives," he said, describing the JD(U) as a sinking ship.

Mr Kumar reacted by sending out his party's top leaders to respond to allegations by Mr Singh of pettiness and for allegedly dragging his family into a political fight citing illegal property deals.

The JD(U) national president Rajiv Ranjan (Lalan) Singh in a hurry to blunt the attacks by Mr Singh, however, appeared to have overcorrected when he ended up threatening the alliance party BJP.

"What is the need to join the Union Cabinet? The Chief Minister had decided in 2019 we won't be part of the Union Cabinet," Rajiv Ranjan told reporters. He said the JD(U) won't join the Union Cabinet in the near future too, leading to speculation of a rift that can't be mended.

The sudden increase in outburst of Mr Kumar's aides like Rajiv Ranjan is seen as a calculated move to put pressure on the BJP to concede to the Chief Minister's demands, which includes removal of Bihar assembly Speaker Vijay Kumar Sinha, for whom Nitish Kumar's dislike is an open secret.

The Chief Minister, citing health reasons, had stayed away from a meeting of the government think-tank NITI Aayog in Delhi this weekend, which 23 Chief Ministers including West Bengal's Mamata Banerjee had attended. The absence was seen as yet another show of anger by Mr Kumar at the BJP.

Mr Singh had denied the charge of negotiating directly with the Modi government for a ministerial position in the centre. He said Home Minister Amit Shah had spoken to Mr Kumar about cabinet expansion and offered one berth to the party on the condition that Mr Singh himself become a Union Minister.

Mr Singh also denied the JD(U)'s allegations that there are irregularities in his property deals. "These properties belong to my wife and other dependents, who have been paying due tax since 2010," he said. "I don't know what the party wants to investigate. I have nothing to hide," he said.

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News Network
August 15,2022

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Mangaluru, Aug 15: A retired army soldier collapsed and died during a flag hoisting ceremony marking Independence Day at a village in Karnataka's Dakshina Kannada district on Monday, police said. 

The deceased has been identified as Gangadhara Gowda.

As people across the country celebrated the 76th Independence Day, the Kutrupady gram panchayat in Kadaba taluk too organised a flag hoisting ceremony.

Gowda, who took part in the ceremony, collapsed soon after giving a call for saluting the national flag, police said.

Though he was rushed to hospital, Gowda died on the way, they said.

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News Network
August 19,2022

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Ahmedabad, Aug 19: Some of the convicts in the Bilkis Bano case of the 2002 Gujarat riots are “Brahmins” with good ‘sanskaar’ or values and it is possible they may have been fixed due to their past family activities, a BJP MLA, who was a part of the state government panel that recommended remission to all the 11 men found guilty, said on Thursday.

C K Raulji, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA from Godhra, said he does not know whether the convicts, released after spending more than 15 years in jail, were involved in the crime.

On August 15, all the 11 convicts sentenced to life imprisonment in the 2002 case of Bilkis Bano’s gang rape and murder of her seven family members during the communal riots walked out of the Godhra sub-jail after the BJP government in Gujarat allowed their release under its remission policy.

“We took the decision on the basis of a Supreme Court order. We were asked to look at their (convicts’) behaviour and decide (on their early release),” Raulji, who was one of the members of the government-appointed committee that recommended granting of remission to the convicts, told a news portal.

“We asked the jailer and learnt that their behaviour was good in the prison…also (some of the convicts) are Brahmins. They have good ‘sanskaar’ (values),” said the ruling party legislator.

The Gujarat government’s decision has invited sharp criticism from the opposition parties who have said the move was against the Centre’s guidelines.

However, Raulji said the convicts may have been fixed.

“It is possible that they (the convicts) might have been fixed in the case due to their past family activities. When such riots take place it happens that those who are not involved are named. But I don’t know if they committed the crime, we decided (on remission) based on their behaviour,” he said.

Asked about the welcome accorded to the 11 men after their release from prison, he said they had not welcomed them.

The Gujarat government released the 11 convicts after the Supreme Court directed it to consider their plea for relief under the state’s 1992 remission policy.

A special CBI court in Mumbai had on January 21, 2008, sentenced to life imprisonment all the 11 accused in the case for murder of seven family members of Bilkis Bano, a riots survivor, and her gang rape. Their conviction was later upheld by Bombay High Court.

These convicts served more than 15 years in prison after which one of them approached the Supreme Court with a plea for his premature release.

The apex court had directed the Gujarat government to look into the issue of remission of his sentence as per its 1992 policy on the basis of the date of his conviction. Thereafter, the government formed a committee which took the decision to allow release of all the convicts.

On March 3, 2002, Bilkis Bano’s family was attacked by a mob at Randhikpur village in Limkheda taluka of Dahod district. Bilkis, who was five months pregnant at the time, was gang raped and seven members of her family were killed during the BJP backed riots. 

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