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Minimum balance penalty to offset costs of Jan Dhan accounts: SBI

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arundhati

Mumbai, March 9: Providing a rationale for re-introducing penalty for non-maintenance of minimum balance in its savings accounts from April 1, State Bank of India chief Arundhati Bhattacharya on Wednesday said the public sector lender needs funds to balance the oprational costs of Jan Dhan accounts.

“Now there is a burden of a lot of things. We have 11 crore financial inclusion accounts – basic savings and Jan Dhan accounts – and have to manage them as well,” Bhattacharya said on the sidelines of a women entrepreneurs’ national convention here.

“SBI was the only bank that didn’t have this as we have removed it in 2012,” she said.

This condition of maintaining minimum balance will not be applicable to the Jan Dhan accounts, she added.

According to reports, the government has asked SBI to reconsider its decision to levy the penalty, though Bhattacharya said that the bank has not received any formal request on this.

She also said that SBI’s requirement for minimum balance is lowest among all banks.

The SBI has made it mandatory for savings accounts in metropolitan areas to maintain a minimum balance of Rs 5,000, Rs 3,000 in urban areas, Rs 2,000 in semi-urban areas and Rs 1,000 in rural areas, from April 1.

These charges will be based on the difference between the minimum balance required and the shortfall. For metropolitan areas, if the shortfall is greater than 75 per cent. the charges would be Rs 100 plus service tax.

If the shortfall is between 50-75 per cent, the bank would charge Rs 75 plus service tax and for below 50 per cent shortfall, a fee of Rs 50 plus service tax would be levied, according to the SBI notification of new charges.

Similarly, for rural areas, the penalty for non-maintenance of minimum balance ranges from Rs 20-50 plus service tax.

A number of private sector banks already have the condition for maintenance of minimum balance.

ICICI Bank savings accounts need to have a minimum balance of Rs 10,000 in urban and metropolitan areas and Rs 5,000 in semi-urban areas.

In an HDFC savings account, the user needs to have a minimum balance of Rs 10,000 in urban and metropolitan areas, Rs 5,000 in semi-urban areas and Rs 2,500 in rural areas.

Axis Bank also has the condition of maintaining a minimum balance of Rs 10,000 in its savings accounts.

IANS

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Hike in petrol, diesel prices continues

Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday said that the government was looking at ways to keep rising fuel prices in check.

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New Delhi, May 22 : The hike in Petrol and diesel prices continued for the ninth day on Tuesday amidst reports that the government was mulling steps to check it.

Petrol prices were hiked in the range of 29-32 paise per litre across Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Chennai, while diesel prices were lifted by 26-28 paise per litre, compared to the previous day.

On Tuesday, a litre of petrol was sold at Rs 76.87 in Delhi, Rs 79.53 in Kolkata, Rs 84.7 in Mumbai and Rs 79.79 in Chennai, according to Indian Oil.

Diesel was sold at Rs 68.08 per litre in Delhi, Rs 70.63 per litre in Kolkata, Rs 72.48 per litre in Mumbai and Rs 71.87 per litre in Chennai.

Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday said that the government was looking at ways to keep rising fuel prices in check.

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Equity indices close marginally higher; auto, metal stocks gain

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Mumbai, May 22: The key Indian equity indices provisionally closed in the green on Tuesday, although with marginal gains on the back of value buying by investors, after declining for five sessions in a row.

According to market analysts, healthy buying activity was witnessed in auto, metal and healthcare stocks.

However, weakness in global markets and rise in crude oil prices restricted further gains on the Indian indices.

At 3.30 p.m, the broader Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) provisionally closed at 10,536.70 points — up by 20 points or 0.19 per cent — from its previous close of 10,516.70.

The barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex), which had opened at 34,601.49 points, closed at 34,651.24 points (3.30 p.m) — higher 35.11 points or 0.1 per cent — from its previous session’s close of 34,616.13 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 34,754.60 points and a low of 34,550.22 points during the intra-day trade. The BSE market breadth was tilted towards the bulls with 1,444 advances against 1,182 declines.

The major gainers on the BSE were Dr Reddy’s Lab, State Bank of India (SBI), Bajaj Auto, Tata Motors and Coal India, while Asian Paints, Axis Bank, Tata Consultancy Services, IndusInd Bank and Power Grid were among the major losers.

On the NSE, the top gainers were Dr Reddy’s Lab, SBI and Bajaj Finserv. The major losers were Indian Oil Corp, Ultratech Cement and Bharti Infratel.

IANS

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India’s Ola in 3 more Australian cities

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New Delhi, May 22: Indian ride-sharing major Ola on Tuesday expanded its services in Australia to three more cities — Brisbane, Gold Coast and Canberra.

To celebrate its launch in these cities, Ola is offering discounted rides from Tuesday. Customers can download the Ola app either from Google Play or iOS App Store, register for an Ola account and begin booking their rides.

“Customers in these cities can book discounted rides using Ola app starting Tuesday,” the city-based online cab aggregator said in a statement here. The online transportation network company has been operating in Perth, Sydney and Melbourne since it forayed into the island-nation early in 2018.

So far, over 30,000 driver-partners have registered themselves with the company since its launch in Australia on January 30, the statement said.

“Over the coming months, Ola is working on its rollout in other Australian cities Adelaide, Darwin and Hobart,” it added.

Founded in 2011, Ola has been competing against Uber in the Indian ride-hailing market. The seven-year-old Ola claims to have over 125 million users in 110 cities across India.

WeForNews

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