Sebi Chairperson Madhabi Puri Buch emphasized that the Sahara case remains a priority for the capital markets regulator, despite the recent passing of the group's founder, Subrata Roy. Speaking at a Ficci event, Buch stated that Sebi's focus is on the conduct of the entity itself, asserting that the matter will persist irrespective of the absence of any individual.
Addressing concerns about the relatively low refunds, Buch explained that the funds were returned based on evidence presented to a committee appointed by the Supreme Court. Despite Sebi's directive for the Sahara group to deposit over Rs 24,000 crore, reports indicate that only Rs 138 crore has been refunded to investors so far.
The Sahara group has faced multiple allegations, including accusations of operating a Ponzi scheme. Subrata Roy's troubles with Sebi began in 2010, leading to restrictions on fund mobilization and public security issuance. In 2014, Roy was arrested for contempt of court due to non-refund of over Rs 20,000 crore to investors. Although he was later granted bail, legal challenges persisted.
The root of the issue lies in the two Sahara group companies, Sahara India Real Estate Corporation and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation, which raised funds through Optionally Fully Convertible Debentures (OFCD) in 2007-08. Following a series of legal proceedings, the Supreme Court ordered the refund of deposits with 15% interest in 2012. Despite Sahara's claim of already refunding over 95% directly, it was directed to deposit an estimated Rs 24,000 crore with Sebi for further investor refunds, a point the group argued as a "double payment."
The Bombay High Court has directed the Income Tax department to refund Rs 1,128 crore to Vodafone Idea Limited, citing the department's "time-barred" assessment order for the assessment year 2016-2017. In its judgment, the court criticized the assessing officer for "laxity and lethargy" in not issuing the final order within the mandated 30-day period, causing a significant loss to the exchequer.
The ruling came in response to a petition by Vodafone Idea Limited, asserting that the tax paid exceeded the legitimate amount due. The court expressed concern over the officer's apathy and recommended a detailed inquiry, advocating strict action against those responsible for the delay. Emphasizing the impact on the nation's economic stability, the court directed the order copy to be circulated to the Union Ministry of Finance. The company argued that, under the Income Tax Act, it was entitled to a refund with interest due to the officer's failure to issue the final order within the specified timeframe.
The court rejected the tax department's claim of not receiving the Dispute Resolution Panel's directions, stating they were accessible on the Income Tax Business Application portal. Consequently, the court deemed the assessment order passed in August 2023 as time-barred and ruled in favor of Vodafone Idea Limited, granting the refund with interest.
Capital markets regulator Sebi has empanelled 12 entities, including Ernst & Young LLP and KPMG Assurance and Consulting Services LLP, to provide assistance to its search team for onsite data acquisition during search and seizure operations.
The other empanelled entities are -- Baker Tilly Business Advisory Services, Cybermate Forensics & Data Security Solutions, Cyint Technologies, ECS Info Tech, Innefu Labs, Mahen Technologies, Nangia & Co LLP, Netrika Consulting India, Pelorus Technologies and Systools Software, according to a notice by Sebi last week.
They have been empanelled for providing digital forensic services to the regulator following the completion of the empanelment process. The empanelment will be valid for a period of two years.
In August, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) invited applications for empanelment of service providers experienced in the field of digital forensic services.
The applications were invited from eligible service providers experienced in digital forensic services for acquisition, extraction and analysis of digital evidence from mobile, computers, and tablets, among others, on an ongoing basis.
As per the notice, the entities will be required to provide onsite and offsite assistance to the search team and onsite data acquisition during search and seizure operations.
In addition, they will have to undertake forensic acquisition or imaging of different types of digital devices, such as laptops, mobile phones, tablets, hard drives, USB drives, CDs/DVDs, servers etc.
Further, they will be required to do onsite acquisition of cloud data from cloud apps like Gmail, Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, Telegram, WhatsApp and any other app or database as decided by the search party.
India's ambition to emerge as a global economic powerhouse is no secret. With a burgeoning population, a rapidly expanding middle class, and a diverse range of industries, the country has the potential to achieve remarkable economic growth. However, realizing this potential requires more than just government policies and initiatives; it necessitates strong industry partnerships. In this article, we'll explore how industry partnerships, especially through organizations like AMCHAM India, can play a pivotal role in driving economic growth in India.
The Role of AMCHAM India
The American Chamber of Commerce in India, commonly known as AMCHAM India, is a prime example of an organization that facilitates industry partnerships for economic growth. AMCHAM India serves as a bridge between American and Indian businesses, fostering collaboration, and creating opportunities for both nations. Their extensive network and expertise enable them to play a crucial role in driving economic growth in India.
1. Strengthening Innovation and Technology Exchange
One of the primary ways industry partnerships contribute to economic growth is through the exchange of innovation and technology. By partnering with international companies, Indian businesses gain access to cutting-edge technologies and global best practices. This exchange enhances the quality and efficiency of products and services, making Indian industries more competitive on a global scale.
AMCHAM India's role in facilitating such partnerships cannot be understated. Through their various forums and events, they create opportunities for Indian companies to connect with American counterparts, fostering collaboration that often results in technological advancements benefiting both nations.
2. Boosting Exports and International Market Access
Industry partnerships can open doors to international markets. Collaborations with global companies can provide Indian businesses with insights into foreign markets, access to distribution networks, and the credibility required to expand their reach. This expansion into international markets can significantly boost India's exports, contributing to economic growth.
AMCHAM India's initiatives often involve trade promotion and market access strategies. By helping Indian companies navigate complex international markets, they play a pivotal role in enhancing the country's export capabilities.
3. Skill Development and Human Capital
Economic growth is not solely dependent on capital and technology; it also relies on human capital. Industry partnerships can contribute to skill development by facilitating knowledge transfer and training programs. This ensures that the Indian workforce remains competitive and adaptable in a rapidly evolving global landscape.
AMCHAM India frequently organizes skill development workshops and training programs, helping Indian professionals and entrepreneurs acquire the skills needed to excel in their respective fields. This investment in human capital ultimately contributes to India's economic growth by creating a more capable and knowledgeable workforce.
4. Infrastructure Development
Collaboration between the government and industry partnerships can drive infrastructure development. Investments from private companies, both domestic and international, can fund crucial infrastructure projects, such as transportation networks, energy generation, and digital connectivity. These developments not only enhance the quality of life for citizens but also create an environment conducive to economic growth.
AMCHAM India acts as a liaison between industry stakeholders and the government, advocating for policies and investments that promote infrastructure development. Their efforts in this regard are instrumental in driving economic growth in India.
5. Research and Development
Innovation is the bedrock of economic growth. Industry partnerships often involve joint research and development efforts. When Indian companies collaborate with global leaders, they gain access to resources and expertise that can drive innovation. This can lead to the creation of new products, services, and industries, furthering India's economic growth.
AMCHAM India encourages such research and development collaborations by bringing together experts and organizations that can collectively drive innovation and propel India forward in the global economy.
In the pursuit of economic growth, industry partnerships play a pivotal role, and organizations like AMCHAM India are catalysts for such collaborations. Through their extensive network, expertise, and advocacy, they enable Indian businesses to connect with international counterparts, fostering innovation, boosting exports, enhancing human capital, and driving infrastructure development and research.
As India continues on its path to becoming a $6 trillion economy by 2030, it's clear that industry partnerships are not just desirable but essential. These collaborations hold the key to unlocking India's full economic potential, creating a win-win situation for both the nation and its global partners. By embracing the power of industry partnerships, India can realize its vision of sustained and inclusive economic growth, propelling it to new heights on the global stage.
In an effort to make the tax process seamless, The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) Chairman Nitin Gupta launched the newly revamped website at the 'Chintan Shivir', organised by Udaipur's Directorate of Income Tax (Systems).
"In order to enhance taxpayer experience and keep pace with new technology, the Income Tax Department has revamped its National website 'www.Incometaxindia.Gov.In' with a user-friendly interface, value-added features, and new modules," the CBDT said in a statement.
The revamped website has been redesigned with a mobile-responsive layout. The website also has a 'Mega Menu' for content, with new features, and functionalities. For the convenience of the visitors to the website, all these new additions are explained through a guided virtual tour and new button indicators.
The new functionalities allow users to compare different Acts, sections, rules, and tax treaties. All relevant content on the site is now tagged with Income Tax sections for easy navigation.
Further, dynamic due date alerts functionality provides reverse countdowns, tooltips, and links to relevant portals to help taxpayers comply easily. The revamped website is another initiative to provide enhanced taxpayer services and will continue to educate taxpayers and facilitate tax compliance, the CBDT added.
India will take a giant leap to become one of the largest economies in the world soon. Union minister Piyush Goyal said India is aiming to go "from 3.5 trillion dollar economy to 35 trillion dollar economy in 25 years" by the time it celebrates its Independence centenary. Speaking at the NDTV conclave ahead of the G20 meet, Mr Goyal, who handles the Ministry of Commerce & Industry, said, "We are all optimist and young. The demographic profile of India is in its 30s, we will add 30 trillion dollars to India's economy in coming years."
"We are going to bring convergence. Given Prime Minister Narendra Modi's astute leadership and the popularity that he has among leaders, I'm confident we can bring something on geo-political issue," he added.
India will be the human capital of the world to serve the requirements of the global economy.
Sources: NDTV Conclave event at New Delhi.
International economic sanctions have become a prominent tool in global diplomacy, used by countries and international organizations to influence the behavior of other nations. These sanctions typically involve restrictions on trade, financial transactions, and diplomatic relations, with the aim of coercing the targeted country into changing its policies or behavior. While economic sanctions are often hailed as a peaceful alternative to military intervention, their effectiveness remains a subject of debate. This article explores the effectiveness of international economic sanctions, examining their goals, mechanisms, and real-world outcomes.
The Goals of Economic Sanctions
Economic sanctions are imposed with various objectives in mind, but they generally fall into three broad categories:
Deterrence: One primary goal is to deter a nation from engaging in actions that are deemed harmful to international peace and security. For example, sanctions may be imposed to discourage a country from developing nuclear weapons or supporting terrorism.
Punishment: Sanctions are also used as a means to punish a nation for its actions, such as human rights abuses or violations of international law. By inflicting economic pain, policymakers hope to compel the targeted country to change its behavior.
Compellence: Another objective is to compel a nation to take specific actions, like ending an ongoing conflict or withdrawing from a territory. Sanctions can be designed to pressure the target into negotiations or compliance with certain demands.
Effectiveness of Economic Sanctions
The effectiveness of economic sanctions depends on several factors, including the severity of the sanctions, the resilience of the targeted country's economy, and the international context. Here are some key points to consider when evaluating their effectiveness:
Limited Success in Isolation: Economic sanctions often struggle to achieve their goals when applied in isolation. History has shown that unilateral sanctions are less effective than multilateral ones. When multiple countries collectively impose sanctions, it can create more significant economic and diplomatic pressure on the target.
Economic Impact: The effectiveness of sanctions largely hinges on their economic impact. Severe sanctions can cripple an economy, causing economic hardship and potentially sparking social unrest. However, this hardship can also unite a population against the sanctioning nations rather than against their own government.
Duration: Sanctions may take time to produce results. Patience is often required, as policymakers must wait for economic pressure to influence the targeted country's decision-making. This can be challenging in democratic systems where political timelines are short.
Unintended Consequences: Economic sanctions can have unintended consequences. They may lead to a humanitarian crisis, hurt innocent civilians, or encourage the black market. Such outcomes can damage the credibility and moral standing of the sanctioning nations.
Adaptability of Targeted Nations: Targeted nations can be resilient and find ways to mitigate the effects of sanctions. They may seek alternative trading partners, diversify their economy, or develop indigenous industries to reduce their dependence on the sanctioned goods.
Several case studies highlight the complex and often mixed results of economic sanctions:
Iran: The sanctions imposed on Iran over its nuclear program had a significant impact on its economy, but they did not force Iran to completely abandon its nuclear ambitions. Instead, they led to negotiations and the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in 2015.
Cuba: Despite decades of U.S. sanctions, Cuba's government remained in power, although the sanctions did hinder economic development. These sanctions were largely unilateral and faced international criticism.
South Africa: International sanctions played a role in ending apartheid in South Africa by isolating the regime and pressuring it to change its policies. This is often cited as a successful example of sanctions.
The effectiveness of international economic sanctions is a complex and contentious issue. While they have achieved some successes in influencing the behavior of targeted nations, their overall impact varies widely. Success depends on factors such as the nature of the sanctions, the resilience of the target's economy, and the international context. Policymakers must carefully consider these factors when employing economic sanctions, recognizing that they are just one tool among many in the realm of international diplomacy. Furthermore, they must be mindful of the potential unintended consequences and the human cost that sanctions can impose. As with any policy tool, international economic sanctions require a nuanced approach and ongoing evaluation to determine their effectiveness in achieving desired outcomes. (AMCHAM INDIA)
In an announcement on Ambuja Cement, a part of Adani Group, today announced its acquisition of Sanghi Industries at an enterprise value of ? 5,000 crore. Soon after the acquisition, Adani Group chairman Gautam Adani said Ambuja Cement's promise to double its cement capacity by 2028 is on track.
"Promise to double our cement capacity by 2028 on track. Delighted to announce the addition of @CementSanghi, India's most efficient / lowest cost clinker manufacturer to Adani's portfolio. As part of @AmbujaCementACL, Sanghi Cement (in our karmabhoomi Kutch) significantly leverage our coastal shipping (+ energy/logistics) advantages. Sanghipuram cement capacity to double to 15 MTPA," he posted on X Twitter.
H.E. Mr. Abdulla Husein Salman Mohamed Almarzooqi, Consul General of UAE in Mumbai invited Indian businesses, government civil society and individuals for the 28th Conference of the Parties (COP28) on climate change, which is scheduled from November 30th to December 12th, 2023 in Dubai.
“The COP28 UAE Presidency believes that governments and the private sector must work closely together in order to address climate change. Through the Green Zone, the COP28 UAE Presidency offers the private sector the opportunity to showcase their contributions and solutions to the global climate challenge. Their innovative approaches, climate action technologies and entrepreneurship will constitute an important part of COP28. The Green Zone will also host technical conferences, panels, and activations with a focus on existing and future solutions to climate change mitigation,” H.E. Mr. Almarzooqi remarked at the official sideline event of COP28, which is part of the initiative of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR). The event was jointly organized by the UAE Consulate General in Mumbai, All India Association of Industries (AIAI), WTC Mumbai and the Indian Chamber of International Business (ICIB).
H.E. Mr. Almarzooqi further remarked, “COP28 UAE is a milestone opportunity for the world to come together, course correct, and drive progress. As the first country in the region to ratify the Paris Agreement, the first to commit to an economy-wide reduction in emissions, and the first to announce a Net Zero by 2050strategy, the UAE is committed to raising ambition in this critical decade for climate action. COP28 will emphasize a ‘leave no one behind’ approach to climate action. Underscoring all efforts are the principles of transformation, solidarity, pragmatism, and inclusivity.”
The consul general concluded his address by saying, “I commend the efforts of every delegate participating in COP28, as well as the countless individuals and organizations working tirelessly to combat climate change worldwide. Together, we have the power to shape the destiny of our planet. Let us embrace this responsibility with courage, determination, and solidarity. Let us turn the tide on climate change, ushering in an era of sustainability, and leave a legacy that future generations will be proud of.”
Speaking on this occasion, Dr. Vijay Kalantri, President - All India Association of Industries (AIAI), Chairman - WTC Mumbai remarked, “Climate change is the greatest challenge of humanity in the 21st century and every citizen should participate in combating this challenge. Developing smart cities is a solution to combat climate change. Rulers of ancient India have set illustrious examples of how to build environment-friendly drainage and sewerage systems. Our municipal authorities need to adopt these sustainable practices and also take strict action against unauthorized construction. Local authorities may consider the environmental impact of construction projects before giving approval. Government may also provide land and tax incentives for converting urban waste into power, fertilizer and other useful products.”
Dr. Kalantri suggested industries use recycled materials as inputs in their manufacturing process to reduce wastage and conserve raw materials. There are proven methods to produce fiber and yarn from used clothes. Similarly,
Dr. Kalantri pointed out that advanced countries such as the USA may implement capacity-building projects in low-income countries to facilitate their transition to sustainable development. Dr. Kalantri mentioned that we can collaborate with the UAE Consulate in Mumbai to conduct roadshow to promote the COP28 Summit that will be held in Dubai later this year.
During the event, Prof Seema Unnikrishnan, National Institute of Industrial Engineering, Mumbai welcomed Government of India’s move to introduce a carbon credit market, which will be administered by the Bureau of Energy Efficiency. She remarked, “I am confident that the new carbon market will add to the momentum gained from the already existing PAT scheme (Perform Achieve and Trade scheme) and incentivize obligated entities to reduce their carbon footprint.”
In his welcome address, Mr. Manpreet Singh, President, ICIB pointed out, “This is the new beginning as we are here to prepare roadmap for collaboration to build a better planet. Global warming and natural disasters are costing lives, livelihood and loss to world GDP in enormous proportion. COP28 will shape dialogue on the role of business and civil society in addressing the greatest challenge of humanity, which is climate change.”
During the event, Mr Chintan Oza, Regional Director – India, Founder Institute, Mr. Sandeep Goswami, Climate Science and Policy Professional and Mrs. Dhanashree Hardas, Chairperson - Environment committee, MACCIA raised awareness about the urgency of combating climate change with the support of business and civil society.