1) Govt gets ready for reforms to fight slowdown; FM to meet FPIs, MFs today
Even as Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is holding daily meetings with industry in the backdrop of sluggish economic growth, the Centre is planning reforms in crucial sectors over the next few months, Business Standard has learnt.
These plans include a public transportation initiative on the lines of the erstwhile National Urban Renewal Mission (JN-NURM) for the automobile sector, a tax overhaul through the direct tax code (which is in the works), and others. (Read more here)
2) No jail for CSR violation: FM Nirmala Sitharaman to business leaders
There will be no enforcement of the penal provisions, including jail terms, recently inserted in the Companies Act for businesses not meeting the corporate social responsibility (CSR) obligation, said Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
She reportedly said so to delegations from business chambers at a meeting in her ministry.
The representatives also asked for a Rs 1-trillion ‘quick fix’ stimulus to revive demand and consumption, saying economic growth has slipped to its lowest under the Narendra Modi administration. (Read more here)
3) Income Tax dept relaxes assessment and scrutiny norms for start-ups
The income tax (I-T) department has relaxed its assessment and scrutiny norms for start-ups.
In a circular it directed its officers not to raise additional tax demands for start-ups recognised by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT).
This will be done in cases where scrutiny is limited to Section 56 (2) (viib) of the Income Tax Act, or what is called in popular parlance angel tax. (Read more here)
4) May not be able to repay due in the near future: DHFL to stock exchanges
Crisis-hit Dewan Housing Finance (DHFL) has informed the stock exchanges that it may not be able to repay due in the near future as the firm is in talks with lenders on the resolution plan they have submitted.
“We, however, would like to reiterate that the company remains committed to resolving the issues being faced by it and is making all-round efforts to work out a resolution plan which will be in the best interest of all stakeholders,” the company said. (Read more here)
5) Centre to raise tariff barriers on imported solar and wind equipment
To promote the domestic manufacturing capacity of solar and wind equipment, the government will increase tariff barriers on imported solar panels, wind turbines and their components. Imported Chinese solar equipment are likely to be affected the most.
This comes at a time when India is exploring all options to bridge its enormous trade deficit with China. As of FY19, the deficit stood at $53 billion, down $10 billion after India raised import duties on a broad range of products — mostly originating from China — as many as eightfold in 2018. (Read more here)
6) Coffee Day board appoints EY for audit; to choose strategic advisor soon
The board of directors at Coffee Day Enterprises has appointed EY to scrutinise the books of accounts of the company along with its subsidiaries in the light of the purported letter written by the chain’s founder V G Siddhartha, who was found dead in mysterious circumstances last month. The company made the disclosure in a regulatory filing on Thursday after a board meeting.
The board has also decided to appoint a person of eminence or a reputed firm as its strategic corporate advisor for determining the strategic direction for the firm. (Read more here)
7) Reliance Capital board denies all violations, may drag PwC to court
The board of Reliance Capital (RCap) on Thursday denied all violations raised by erstwhile auditor PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in its letter to the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA).
“The company is planning to take legal actions against PwC after an independent investigation conducted by top law firms revealing there was no diversion of funds by the company, which was the primary allegation of PwC against RCap,” sources close to the company said. (Read more here)
8) Dealers perched precariously on the edge as car sales fall off the cliff
TV Sundram Iyengar and Sons Ltd, which is part of the diversified TVS Group and one of the largest dealers of Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd (M&M) vehicles in south India, has closed 20 M&M dealerships in Tamil Nadu and Kerala due to falling sales, LiveMint reported on Friday, while citing a source in the know.
The report gave the example of a 46-year-old first-generation entrepreneur in Maharashtra who used to run two Maruti Suzuki India Ltd showrooms, and who suffered a heart attack recently after he was forced to shut one of the showrooms, along with two service centres. The report added that the entire business has since been taken over by another dealer after he defaulted on bank loans and a resolution process is underway at present.
According to the report, these are just two of the many instances where automobile dealers have been forced to shut their business, which has been pummeled by the worst slump in passenger vehicle sales in close to two decades.
9) Infosys eyeing 50% revenue from digital business: Parekh
Infosys, the country's second-largest software exporter, is aiming at higher margins as it looks to earn half of its revenue from its fast-growing digital portfolio, the Economic Times on Friday quoted its Chief Executive, Salil Parekh, as saying. Encouraged by the strong deal wins in the first quarter of this financial year, the IT major is signaling a revival, after a protracted spell of management turmoil, technological shifts and regulatory upheaval in its largest market had impacted business in recent times, added the report.
10) Indiabulls founder to cede control after LVB merger
Indiabulls founder Sameer Gehlaut has promised the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) that he would relinquish all control and rights, have no say in the management, and bring the promoter group shareholding under 10 per cent in the proposed bank to be formed after the merger of Indiabulls Housing Finance and Lakshmi Vilas Bank (LVB), in an all-out effort to convince the regulator, the Economic Times reported on Friday.