Current Affairs January 2013 - Current Affairs Today - Page 23

January 2013

Wei Wei is new Chinese Ambassador to India

image China has appointed Wei Wei (57) as new ambassador to India, succeeding Zhang Yan. The appointment was made by President Hu Jintao in accordance with a decision made by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC), China’s top legislature

SBI to set up ‘by-invitation-only’ branches to serve Super-rich and NRIs

India’s largest public sector bank, State Bank of India (SBI), along with its associates, plans to set up ‘by-invitation-only’ branches under the ‘Kohinoor’ brand in 20 cities to serve uber-rich customers and Non-Resident Indians (NRIs).

What would be so special with these branches?

These branches will be operational 24X7 and have amenities like lounges, conference rooms, personal business centres and cafeterias. The branches will offer all the banking products and services of SBI and its subsidiaries. The bank will assign personal banker to each client. Clients can either visit the branch or interact with staff over video chat for their banking needs. SBI had launched first such branch — Kohinoor Banjara — in Hyderabad in 2010. While the bank has not specified any minimum deposit requirement, it expects customers to have at least Rs 1 crore of deposits in the branch.

SBI had launched first such branch — Kohinoor Banjara — in Hyderabad in 2010.

SEBI prohibits companies from trade in ESOS, ESPS shares

Market regulator, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has brought changes in its Employee Stock Option Scheme (ESOS) and Employee Stock Purchase Scheme (ESPS) Guidelines, 1999, prohibiting companies from dealing in their own shares in the secondary market under these schemes, with immediate effect.

Why this measure?

It was apprehended that some companies may frame such employee benefit schemes with the purpose of dealing in its own securities with the object of inflating, depressing, maintaining or causing fluctuation in the price of the securities by engaging in fraudulent and unfair trade practices. These sorts of trading also raise regulatory concerns regarding compliance with SEBI (Prohibition of Fraudulent and Unfair Trade Practices relating to the Securities Market) Regulations, 2003, and SEBI (Prohibition of Insider Trading) Regulations, 1992.

National Green Tribunal orders halt to all constructions going in Noida and Greater Noida

The National Green Tribunal has ordered an interim injunction on all the construction activities running in Noida and Greater Noida.

Why this ban?

The Tribunal noticed that construction activities have violated environmental standards as it will require huge underground water drawing for construction which will further deplete and pollute water table in this area which has already gone down tremendously. The Tribunal also noted that the underground water used by builders for construction hardly re-percolates into earth for the fact that it is a tree-free zone, has a concrete base, and water largely is wasted as it flows into the drains. The constructions have also violated the guidelines by the Central Ground Water Authority and builders had no proof of receiving environmental clearance from the state government as it is necessary for builders who are raising the construction of 20,000 square metres and above to take environmental clearance under the relevant rules from the State Government.

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