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Rising crude prices, Indo-Pakistan tension drag Sensex 310 pts lower

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Mumbai, Feb 18: Rising global crude oil prices, along with heightened tensions between India and Pakistan, dragged the Indian equity market on Monday, with the key equity indices closing lower for the 8th consecutive session despite optimism following the US-China trade talks.

The rising Brent crude prices weakened the Indian currency by 12 paise on Monday. Rupee closed at Rs 71.34 per dollar from its previous close of 71.22.

Besides, the equity market also reacted negatively to the outflow of foreign funds seen in the last few trading sessions.

The S&P BSE Sensex closed 310.51 points or 0.87 per cent lower at 35,498.44 from its previous close of 35,808.95, while the Nifty ended 83.45 points lower at 10,640.95.

“Domestic markets are seeing a decoupling from global markets that further indicates the fact that we are moving towards a macroeconomic event such as the general elections, one of the reasons why this decoupling is seen in the last 2-3 months,” said Mustafa Nadeem, CEO, Epic Research.

“Crude oil prices (WTI) may further have an impact on the Indian equity market since it has been on the rise and taking well support over $50-mark for the last couple of weeks.”

Lately, investors have also grown cautious due to the Indo-Pak tensions following the Pulwama terrorist attack. Indian withdrew the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status accorded to Pakistan and imposed 200 per cent customs duty on imports from there.

Analysts said that worsening relation0s between India and Pakistan have a bearing on the captital inflow. This was one of the reasons for the acceleration of outflows of foreign funds.

“Market remained on a selling spree as reducing foreign inflows due to fear of escalation of tensions at the border impacted the sentiment,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services.

“Volatility in the market may continue due to lack of domestic triggers as investors are likely to remain cautious.”

Top gainers on the BSE were ONGC, up 1.70 per cent at 137.40, followed by Tata Motors, Axis Bank, Vedanta and NTPC, which gained up to 1.15 per cent.

Among the top laggards were TCS, down over 3 pet cent, followed by Yes Bank, ITC, Sun Pharma, Reliance Industries and Coal India.

On Friday, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold shares to the tune of Rs 966.43 crore, while the domestic institutional investors (DIIs) bought Rs 853.25 crore worth of scrips.

IANS

Business

Closed Markaz, no foreigners dims hopes for Nizamuddin shopkeepers

In comparison to the adjoining Bhogal market, Nizamuddin market is primarily focused on the needs of the visitors to the Markaz. Now since the markaz has been closed, the usual flow of customers is missing.

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Nizamuddin Markaz

New Delhi, July 10 : A group of five men in white kurta pyjamas wait outside the Nizamuddin Markaz for the local policeman to arrive. After some anxious moments, the policeman arrives on a motorcycle with the building”s key. It is time for afternoon prayers and only five people are permitted to offer prayers inside the Markaz five times a day. As he unlocks the gate, the five men walk in to offer Zohar Namaz.

Khaleeq, who has his small shop, selling skull caps, beads and other religious items, exactly opposite the Markaz entrance, feels that with foreigners gone from the area, the market will have a hard time to pick up.

“With the uncertainty on when foreigners would be allowed in Markaz now, the business at Nizamuddin market is badly hit. Most of the shops here are based on the foreigners” needs and demands. With no foreign customers, we are facing heavy losses,” he said.

The worst affected are money exchange shops which were mostly dependent on foreigners” visit to Markaz.

Ahmed Uzair, a banker who resides in Nizamuddin, believes that the market might now pay the price of being too much dependent on foreign customers attending the jamaat at Nizamuddin Markaz.

“Many shopkeepers are vacating their shops as they are unable to pay the rent. Many have packed up and went to their native places as they see a bleak future of what was once a flourishing market,” Uzair said.

After de-containment of Nizamuddin, the barricades present at the main road leading to Nizamuddin Markaz has been removed now but there are little or no customers in the market.

In comparison to the adjoining Bhogal market, Nizamuddin market is primarily focused on the needs of the visitors to the Markaz. Now since the markaz has been closed, the usual flow of customers is missing.

“Not just foreigners but visitors from other states in India formed the backbone for the survival of this market. It”s facing a tough time now and it seems it will continue for some time,” said Shamshad Ahmed, another shopkeeper in the area.

The Markaz was closed since the lockdown and on the night of March 29, police and health authorities started bringing people out from the Markaz and sent them to hospitals and quarantine facilities.

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PIL in Gujarat HC for saffron symbol on ”Made in India” products

It also sought the government assign different coloured symbols on products, so that an illiterate or semi-literate person can also recognise the place of origin.

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Gujarat High Court

Gandhinagar, July 9 : The Gujarat High Court has issued notice to the Centre and state governments on a PIL seeking colour coded symbols on products sold online, so that ignorant or illiterate persons can also recognise the place of the origin of the product and seeking direction to assign saffron coloured symbol to products ”Made in India.”

Ahmedabad resident Yatin Soni, in his PIL, said that the products that are sold on online platforms and web portals do not inform the prospective consumers about the manufacturing place of the product, the origin of the manufacturers and other details, which violates the fundamental rights of freedom of information ensured to Indian citizens.

After the ”Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan” launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, any prospective consumer, when ordering products from online platforms and web portals, should be allowed to avail of the information of the country where the product is manufactured, the nationality of the manufacturer et al, it said, adding that, at present there is no provision in law that mandates the manufacturer to display such information.

The PIL seeks directions to the Centre and the Gujarat government to mandate the manufacturer displays, on the web portal information about whether a particular product is manufactured by Indian company and in India, whether it is manufactured by an Indian company but outside India, whether it is manufactured by a foreign company in a foreign land, or in India, and if the manufacturer is an multinational company (MNC), the share of the Indian partner.

It also sought the government assign different coloured symbols on products, so that an illiterate or semi-literate person can also recognise the place of origin.

Apart for a saffron symbol for India-made products, it sought blue colour for Indian manufacturer producing product outside India, red for foreign company manufacturing outside India, yellow for products by foreign manufacturer produced in India and pink colour for products by MNCs.

The PIL also mentioned that after the Galwan valley incident – where 20 Indian soldiers were killed by the Chinese, there were many Indian customers who wanted to boycott Chinese products.

Soni said that the high court, after issuing notice, had slated the next hearing for July 29.

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No BS-IV vehicles will be registered if sold after March 31: Supreme Court

This comes as India has decided to switch to the world’s cleanest emissions standard from April 1. It has gone straight to Euro-VI emission standards from Euro-IV.

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NEW DELHI : The Supreme Court on Wednesday observed that no BS-IV vehicles will be registered if sold after March 31, 2020.

A bench of the Apex Court, headed by Justice Arun Mishra was hearing the matter pertaining to sale of BS-IV vehicles during COVID-19 lockdown, via video conferencing.

The top court recalled its earlier March 27 order allowing sale of BS-IV vehicles for 10 days post lockdown. The apex court had back then allowed marginal relief to auto dealers and auto companies, permitting sale of 10% unsold BS-IV inventory.

Justice Arun Mishra said, “Please do not take advantage of this court by playing fraud. You have told us no sales have taken place. You are understating your values.”

He said, “no vehicle could be registered without our order.” “You have sold more than allowed,” the court noted.

KV Vishwanathan, lawyer for FADA, said, the apex court allowed registration in March 2020.

However, the Bench asked how vehicles were sold during lockdown.

“It would be violation of the spirit of the court order if we allow sales after opening of lockdown,” the Apex Court said.

This comes as India has decided to switch to the world’s cleanest emissions standard from April 1. It has gone straight to Euro-VI emission standards from Euro-IV.

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