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‘Severe’ air pollution likely to return to Delhi in run-up to New Year

‘Severe’ air pollution may return in the national capital in the run-up to New Year, the Met department has forecast, prompting the CPCB to direct agencies to step up action against polluting sources.The concentration of pollutants will rise till at least December 29 due to low velocity wind and the coming down of the atmospheric layer where air and pollutants mix close to the surface. Wind speed 900 metres above the ground may fall to 4 km/hr on December 29, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said. On December 27 and 28, it will be around 17 km/hr and 6 km/hr, respectively. However, from December 30 wind speed may pick up a little and rise to 13 km/hr on the eve of New Year. Ground-level wind speed will be between 5 km/hr and 8 km/hr during this period, the IMD said.The day’s Air Quality Index (AQI) was 335, classified as ‘very poor’ by the CPCB, which may trigger respiratory illnesses on prolonged exposure. “The IMD has predicted that low winds, poor ventilation coefficient and stable atmospheric conditions are likely to cause episodic severe air quality events particularly in the evening and night till December 29,” CPCB’s air lab chief Dipankar Saha said. Poor ventilation coefficient essentially means that the ability of the atmosphere to dilute and disperse the pollutants over a region will reduce.Also readDelhi chokes again as smog strikesAll these factors do not allow dispersion of pollutants leading to their accumulation in the air. In view of the emerging situation, agencies concerned have been requested to remain alert and take all necessary measures for preventing emergency situation, Saha said. In Delhi, agencies such as the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) and the civic bodies are in charge of acting against open burning of waste, coal and firewood, visibly polluting vehicles, diesel generator sets, factors which spike pollution at the local level.

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Gujarat Elections 2017: Congress tries to woo farmers, unemployed in manifesto

Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC) president Bharatsinh Solanki on Friday told mediapersons that the party will release its manifesto on December 5 or 7. “If we come to power, we will create a stress-free environment for all. We are planning to have happiness index in the state. We will take steps to ensure no one sleeps hungry. In the next three years, there won’t be any beggars on the streets. We will improve the Human Development Index and add Happiness Index.”Besides taking steps to solve the problem of traffic and pollution, he said, “If Congress comes to power, we will waive loans of farmers and provide them electricity for 16 hours. For employment generation, we will work to revive the small and medium scale industries.”He added that during revival of GIDC and other industries, Congress ‘government’ will give unemployment allowance to youth, till they get employed. “For 12th pass Rs3,000, for graduate- Rs3,500, for technical and post graduate- Rs4,000. As per an estimate, around 80% engineers are unemployed. We will give them Rs4,000 as unemployment allowance,” remarked Solanki.Taking a jibe at BJP, Solanki said they have done nothing but copied Congress’s schemes. “In 2012, we announced a housing scheme. It was copied by BJP and it promised to give 50 lakh houses but the irony is they have hardly allotted 4 lakh houses,” he claimed.Former Haryana CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda said they are making sure that farmers get adequate minimum support price (MSP) and the party will also implement recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission report.Poll promisesIntroducing Happiness Index Food for all Farm loan waiver 16 hour electricity to farmers Unemployment allowance for 12th pass Rs3,000, for graduate- Rs3,500, for technical and PG- Rs4,000.
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Negative growth in the luxury housing segment: Knight Frank

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The declining trend that engulfed luxury home prices across key Indian metros earlier this year has further intensified amid a global pattern of weakening prices revealed the Knight Frank Prime Global Cities Index Q3 2017.The index that tracks the movement in luxury residential prices across 41 international cities, every quarter, rose by 4.2% in the year to September 2017. However, at least 19 of these cities saw a decline in annual growth.While Delhi (-3.1%) and Bengaluru (-0.8%) recorded sharper negative growth, prices for luxury homes in Mumbai saw a marginal increase of 0.6% between September 2016 and September 2017, albeit on a declining trend.Reflecting on the dismal performances all the three metros featured on the price index slid from their positions in the previous quarter. Delhi saw the biggest drop in rankings as it slipped from the 31st to the 36th position.Dr. Samantak Das, Chief Economist and National Director – Research, said, “Prime residential markets have been under immense pressure particularly since the event of demonetisation. While the move had an adverse impact on the overall residential market, luxury homes sales were worst hit. The quintessential wealthy investors known to take interests in such projects are missing courtesy better returns from other investment avenues. Among the top three cities in India the growth in price in this genre has been slowly tapering. While Mumbai maintained positive growth, albeit at an abysmally low rate, Delhi and Bengaluru witnessed negative growth. We foresee the trend to continue for at least 8- 12 months in this end-user driven market.”Guangzhou continued to top the index with a staggering 36.3% price surge in luxury homes but the overall narrative for China was of a slower growth. While the annual prime price growth in Shanghai slipped from 19.7% last quarter to 14.9%, the rate of price growth decline in Beijing nearly halved from 15% to 7.2%, courtesy government enforced cooling measures.However, the Asia Pacific dominated the ten rankings, with Seoul (11.2%), Sydney (11.0%) and Melbourne (10.4%) joining Guangzhou and Shanghai.Among luxury residential properties in Europe, Madrid, Paris and Berlin recorded robust growth. But other key markets such as Zurich, Vienna, Geneva and London ended the 12-month period witnessing a sharp price decline.

Vyapam medical scam: CBI chargesheets 592

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), on Thursday, filed chargesheet against 592 people in the multi-crore Vyapam scam in Madhya Pradesh, wherein medical seats were allotted in large scale by four private colleges in defiance of all laid out norms and guidelines issued by the Centre, state government, and the Supreme Court.The colleges, according to the chargesheet, also violated the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. Also the agency has written to Madhya Pradesh to take proper action against 229 students who took admission in these colleges violating all laws and paid hefty amount from Rs 70 lakh to Rs 1 crore.The charge-sheet lists promoters of three private medical colleges from Bhopal – JN Choksey, chairman of LN Medical College; SN Vijaywargiya of People’s Medical College and Ajay Goenka of Chirayu Medical College; and one from Indore – Suresh Singh Bhadoriya of Index Medical College – among others. The charge-sheet was filed in connection with CBI’s probe into the PMT 2012 examination.Also four former Vyapam officials are named in the chargesheet and they are identified as Pankaj Trivedi, the then director of Vyapam, Nitin Mohindra, the then Sr Systems Analyst, Ajay Kumar Sen, the then Deputy Systems Analyst and CK Mishra, the then programmer.According to the agency, which took over the case in 2015, 245 have been chargesheeted for the first time, as well as 22 officials of these private medical colleges. This include 143 engine and bogey candidates (impersonator and candidate), 17 guardians, 22 middlemen, and 46 exam invigilators.Explaining the modus operandi, the CBI officials said middlemen followed an engine-bogey system for pairing of candidates to take examination in alleged connivance with certain Vyapam officials.In this, a bright candidate (who had already taken coaching to prepare for the test and is well versed with the examination pattern) would be alloted a roll number just ahead of a not-so-bright aspirant so that the latter could cheat from him, they said.MODUS OPERANDIMiddlemen followed an engine-bogey system for pairing of candidates in connivance with certain Vyapam officials.
The middlemen were charging anything between Rs 15 and 20 lakh for this pairing
The bright candidate would act as engine and the other as the bogey.

Vyapam case: CBI files charge sheet against 592 accused including Chairmen of 4 private medical colleges

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Chairmen of four private medical colleges in Madhya Pradesh and two officers of medical education department are among the 592 accused named in a charge sheet filed by the CBI in a Vyapam-related case, officials said today.Those listed in the charge sheet included J N Choksey, chairman of L N Medical College; S N Vijaywargiya of People’s Medical College; Ajay Goenka of Chirayu Medical College (all in Bhopal) and Suresh Singh Bhadoriya of Index Medical College, Indore, they said. While three promoters did not comment when contacted by PTI, Bhadoriya claimed neither his nor his college’s name was mentioned in the CBI charge sheet. All four of them are understood to have filed application for anticipatory bail, the CBI officials said.The charge sheet was filed in a special CBI court in Bhopal in the case of Pre-Medical Test (PMT) conducted by the Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board or Vyapam in 2012. The test was for selecting candidates to various medical colleges of the state. Explaining the modus operandi, the CBI officials said middlemen followed an engine-bogey system for pairing of candidates to take examination in alleged connivance with certain Vyapam officials.In this, a bright candidate (who had already taken coaching to prepare for the test and is well versed with the examination pattern) would be alloted a roll number just ahead of a not-so-bright aspirant so that the latter could cheat from him, they said. The bright candidate would act as engine and the other as the bogey, the official said. The middlemen were charging anything between Rs 15 and 20 lakh for this pairing, the CBI officials said.Giving further details of the case, they said on the basis of successful selection, the bright students would then take admission only in the four private medical colleges named in the charge sheet, despite they being in the merit list and hence eligible for admission in government institutions.These successful candidates, in connivance with middlemen and office bearers of private medical colleges, would later withdraw their admission, the officials said. Instead of reporting these vacancies to state government department concerned, the college authorities would fill these seats through management quota charging a hefty amount from a minimum of Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore, they said. The students who took admission through the management quotas were not the ones who sat in the examination, the officials said.Among those named in the charge sheet, 334 are ‘engine- bogey’ candidates, 155 are guardians of these candidates, 46 invigilators of the examination, 26 officials of four private medical colleges, 22 middlemen and two officers of department of medical education, Madhya Pradesh, they said. The state government officials named in the charge sheet are S C Tiwari, the then director, and N M Srivastava, the then joint director in the medical education department, they said.Of the total people named in the charge sheet, 245 have been made accused for the first time. Others have been named in different charge sheet filed earlier by the CBI. The probe agency is looking into the various cases of massive irregularities in various examination conducted by the Vyapam to select candidates for medical colleges and also for state government jobs.

AMC warns of bad air today

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Ahmedabad is not too behind from the national capital when it comes to air pollution. Air pollution in the city is to shoot up soon, Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) warned on Wednesday. The AMC had issued a warning that the city will face severely bad air on Thursday. Air Quality monitoring system placed at Pirana, showing PM 2.5 level, is expected to cross the 400 mark on the Air Quality Index (AQI) metre.The Health department also issued an advisory, anticipating the quality of bad air which is going to prevail in city on Thursday. “People with respiratory issues are advised to stay indoor. Prolonged exposure of such quality of air many develop respiratory illness to health people also,” said Dr Bhavin Solanki, in-charge medical officer of health, AMC.”We have issues advise for people to wear mask, who are going to work in an open area. Over all city’s AQI is going to remain 311, which is considered to be very poor,” added Dr Solanki.

Winter to set in after 10 days, may affect air quality: Experts

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The city has started to experience a nip in the air, particularly morning and nights. However, experts say winter will set in after 10 days.With this being an year of La Nina, also referred to as the cold phase, more cold days are likely this winter season.Mahesh Palavat, chief meteorologist at Skymet weather, said, “No significant snowfall has been recorded in the Himalayan region this year. Cold and severe cold will start in Gujarat once there is a significant snowfall. At present, northeasterly and northerly winds, which are dry in nature, are prevailing across Gujarat.”Director of the India Meteorological Department (IMD), Ahmedabad, Jayanta Sarkar, said, “There is a dip in temperature by one to two degree Celsius. City will experience chill after November 15.”IMPACT ON AIR QUALITYAhmedabad starts to witness temperature below 10 degree in December. Low temperature may affect the air quality. Priya Dutta, senior research associate at Indian Institute of Public Health (IIPH), Gandhinagar, said, “Cold air traps pollutant, which is known as inversion. At present, some parts of the city are witnessing poor air quality. The severe the winter with low temperature, the poorer the quality of air would be and the more widespread the phenomenon.”As per the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) website, on Sunday, Air Quality Index (AQI) of Ahmedabad was 163 as against the normal of 100. It also stated the air in Ahmedabad was unhealthy.LOW TEMPERATURE TO HAVE ILL EFFECTSAhmedabad starts to witness temperature below 10 degree in December. Low temperature may affect the air quality.
As per the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) website, on Sunday, Air Quality Index (AQI) of Ahmedabad was 163 as against the normal of 100. It also stated the city air asunhealthy
With this being an year of La Nina, also referred to as the cold phase, more cold days are likely this winter season. However, the cold is due to set in after 10 days.

WEF Gender Gap index: India slips 21 slots to 108, ranked behind China and Bangladesh

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> India slipped 21 places on the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap index to a lowly 108, behind neighbours China and Bangladesh, primarily due to less participation of women in the economy and low wages.Moreover, India’s latest ranking is 10 notches lower than its reading in 2006 when the WEF started measuring the gender gap. According to the WEF Global Gender Gap Report 2017, India has closed 67 per cent of its gender gap, less than many of its international peers, and some of its neighbours like Bangladesh ranked 47th while China was placed at 100th. Globally also, this year’s story is a bleak one. For the first time since the WEF began measuring the gap across four pillars — health, education, the workplace and political representation — the global gap has actually widened.”A decade of slow but steady progress on improving parity between the sexes came to a halt in 2017, with the global gender gap widening for the first time since the WEF’s Global Gender Gap Report was first published in 2006,” it said. The findings in this year’s report, published today, showed that an overall 68 per cent of the global gender gap has been closed. This is a slight deterioration from 2016 when the gap closed was 68.3 per cent. At the current rate of progress, the global gender gap will take 100 years to bridge, compared to 83 last year.The case is worse in terms of workplace gender divide, which the report estimates will take 217 years to close. On a positive note, however, a number of countries are bucking the dismal global trend as over one-half of all 144 countries measured this year have seen their score improve in the past 12 months, the report noted. At the top of the Global Gender Gap Index is Iceland. The country has closed nearly 88 per cent of its gap. It has been the world’s most gender-equal country for nine years.Others in the top 10 include Norway (2nd), Finland (3rd), Rwanda (4) and Sweden (5), Nicaragua (6) and Slovenia (7), Ireland (8), New Zealand (9) and the Philippines (10). India’s greatest challenges lie in the economic participation and opportunity pillar where the country is ranked 139 as well as health and survival pillar where the country is ranked 141, the WEF said. The report attributed much of India’s decline in position on the overall Global Gender Gap Index to a widening of its gender gaps in political empowerment as well as healthy life expectancy and basic literacy.”With more than 50 years having passed since the inauguration of the nation’s first female prime minister in 1966, maintaining its global top 20 ranking on the political empowerment sub-index will require India to make progress on this dimension with a new generation of female political leadership,” the report said. Moreover, the scale of India’s gender gap in women’s share among legislators, senior officials and managers as well as professional and technical workers highlights that continued efforts will be needed to achieve parity in economic opportunity and participation.In India, the workplace gender gap is reinforced by extremely low participation of women in the economy (136 out of the total 144 countries covered) and low wages for those who work (136th ranking for estimated earned income), the WEF said, adding that “on average, 66 per cent of women’s work in India is unpaid, compared to 12 per cent of men’s”. On a positive note, India succeeded in fully closing its primary and secondary education enrolment gender gaps for the second year running and for the first time has nearly closed its tertiary education gender gap. However, it continues to rank fourth-lowest in the world on health and survival, remaining the world’s least-improved country on this sub-index over the past decade, the WEF stated.”Competitiveness on a national and on a business level will be decided more than ever before by the innovative capacity of a country or a company. Those will succeed best who understand to integrate women as an important force into their talent pool,” said Klaus Schwab, founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum (WEF).

Singapore passport world’s ‘most powerful’, India moves up to 75

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Singapore has the world’s “most powerful” passport, according to a global ranking topped for the first time by an Asian country with India figuring at 75th position, three notches better than its previous ranking.According to the ‘Global Passport Power Rank 2017′ by global financial advisory firm Arton Capital, Germany is ranked second, followed by Sweden and South Korea in third place. Paraguay removed visa requirements for Singaporeans, propelling Singapore’s passport to the top of Passport Index’ most powerful ranking with a visa-free score of 159, the company statement said.Historically, the top 10 most powerful passports in the world were mostly European, with Germany having the lead for the past two years. Since early 2017, the number one position was shared with Singapore, which was steadily going up, it said. “For the first time ever an Asian country has the most powerful passport in the world. It is a testament of Singapore’s inclusive diplomatic relations and effective foreign policy,” said Philippe May, managing director of Arton Capital’s Singapore office.India, which was listed 78th last year, has improved its ranking, figuring at 75th position with a visa-free score of 51. Coming in at last place on the list is Afghanistan, ranked 94 with a score of 22, followed by Pakistan and Iraq at 93 with a score of 26, Syria at 92, having a score of 29 and Somalia at 91 with a score 34. “Visa-free global mobility has become an important factor in today’s world,” said founder and president of Arton Capital Armand Arton at the recently held Global Citizen Forum in Montenegro.”More and more people every year invest hundreds of thousands of dollars in a second passport to offer better opportunity and security for their families,” Arton added. While Singapore quietly climbed the ranks, the US passport has fallen down since President Donald Trump took office. Most recently Turkey and the Central African Republic revoked their visa-free status to US passport holders, the statement said.Passport Index has become the most popular interactive online tool to display, sort and rank the world’s passports.The index ranks national passports by the cross-border access they bring, assigning a “visa-free score” according to the number of countries a passport holder can visit visa-free or with visa on arrival.

Airport worries cap height of proposed IFSC at 61 mts

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The proposed International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) at Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) will not be taller than 61 metres, or about 20 storeys. This is seen as a direct effect of the International Civil Aviation Organisation, a United Nations special agency in the aviation sector, denying height relaxation for BKC.This would mean the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) will not be able to have vertical growth for IFSC and will have to go for horizontal growth to utilise maximum Floor Space Index (FSI).This, however, would mean less open space inside the campus.There are height restrictions at BKC and Wadala as the area falls in the trajectory of the runway for the domestic and international airports. Further restrictions are imposed so that there is no interference with radar signals that control air traffic.UPS Madan, Metropolitan Commissioner, MMRDA, said, “The report by ICAO has not suggested any height relaxation for BKC and for IFSC … This may result in having less open space available but the design could be made accordingly.”According to MMRDA officials they are yet to finalise the design because of the Railways’ demand for getting land demarcated for construction of bullet train terminal.The construction of IFSC is proposed over 50 hectares of land at G-Text Block at BKC for which the permissible FSI is 4 and the maximum height limit at the particular plots reserved for IFSC is 61.45 meters and that means no construction above 18-20 story. This is seen as a direct effect of the International Civil Aviation Organisation, a United Nations special agency in the aviation sector, denying height relaxation for BKC.This would mean the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) will not be able to have vertical growth for IFSC and will have to go for horizontal growth to utilise maximum Floor Space Index (FSI).This, however, would mean less open space inside the campus.There are height restrictions at BKC and Wadala as the area falls in the trajectory of the runway for the domestic and international airports. Further restrictions are imposed so that there is no interference with radar signals that control air traffic.

Retail inflation drops to ‘historical low’ level of 1.54% in June

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Retail inflation hit a “historically low” level of 1.54% in June on dip in food items like vegetables, pulses and milk products, which may prompt the Reserve Bank to go in for rate cut next month.”The number of 1.54% is historically low and reflects the firm and ongoing consolidation of macro economic stability,” Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian told reporters. “The last time we saw such inflation — according to slightly different CPI (IW) — was in 1999 and before that in August 1978,” he added. The latest series of Consumer Price Index (CPI) was introduced in January 2012.Inflation in the previous month – May this year – was 2.18%. On the other hand, in June last year, it was 5.77%. As per the data released by Central Statistics Office, inflation in the food basket as a whole contracted further to 2.12% last month as compared to (-)1.05% in May. Vegetables inflation declined to 16.53 and that of pulses and products to 21.92%.There was decline in rate of price in eggs (-0.08%). On the other hand, the protein rich meat and fish turned costlier as the inflation spiked to 3.49% in June from 1.87% in May. Fruits too were dearer on monthly basis. The retail inflation in the fuel and light segment slowed to 4.54% as compared to 5.46 in May.The Reserve Bank, which mainly factors in retail inflation to arrive at its monetary policy, is slated to meet in early August to announce the next bi-monthly policy rate. In its last policy in June, the central bank had kept the key lending rate unchanged citing risk to inflation.

ORF emerges top Indian think tank in Asia

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Observer Research Foundation (ORF) has emerged as the top ranked think tank in India in the China, India, Japan and the Republic of Korea category, according to the latest Global Go To Think Tank Index Report, released globally today.In the Asia region, ORF finished 5th out of 90 think tanks in this category, improving its position from 6th(out of 65) last year, while the first rank was retained by the Korea Development Institute, Republic of Korea in the Index, prepared annually by the Lauder Institute, Pennsylvania University, US. Japan Institute of International Affairs came second while Korea Institute for International Economic Policy came in third.The IDSA finished 7th, Centre for Civil Society 15th, Delhi Policy Group 17th, Centre for Policy Research 18th, ICRIER 21st, Gateway House 26th,CSDS 36th, Development Alternatives 29th, TERI 34th, CLAWS 38th, Vivekananda International Foundation 42nd, Centre for Science and Environment 66th, Brookings India 75th, The Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy 79th and India Foundation 84th. ORF improved its world ranking too tremendously, rising to the 50th position (out of 150 think tanks) from its 90th position (out of 137) last year in the worldwide (non-US) category.Chatham House was ranked first. The only Indian think tank ahead of ORF was the IDSA which came 30th while ICRIER came 54th, TERI 90th, Brookings India 124th, Gateway House 131st and Vivekananda Foundation 138th. Brookings Institution, US, finished first in the top think tanks world wide (US and non-US) category. IDSA came 105th, ICRIER 110th, TERI 112th, ORF 119th and CLAWS 172nd.ORF was ranked the highest think tank in India in the ‘Top Foreign Policy and International Affairs Think Tanks’ category.In the world ranking, it came 64th out of 133 think tanks, moving up from the 85th position in the last Index report. Brookings Institution came in the first place.In the ‘Top Education Policy Think Tanks’, only ORF featured from India. It came 63rd out of 65 think tanks. Stockholm Environment Institute bagged the first rank in the ‘Top Environment Policy Think Tanks’ category while ORF finished 89th. The Centre for Science and Environment came 18th, Ashoka Trust Research in Ecology and Environment 19th and TERI 20th. ORF was ranked the highest Indian think tank in the categories of ‘Best Managed Think Tanks’, Think Tanks with Best Use of Internet, Best Institutional Collaboration Involving Two or More Think Tanks’ and ‘Think Tanks with the most Innovative Policy Ideas/Proposals’.ORF once again became the most featured Indian think tank across categories, appearing in 26 places while the IDSA and Gateway House have 9 appearances and TERI 8 appearances.President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi had recently addressed flagship programmes of ORF. While Mr Mukherjee addressed the participants of the Asian Forum of Global Governance (AFGG), Mr Narendra Modi delivered the inaugural address at the second Raisina Dialogue, organised by ORF and Ministry of External Affairs.

Demonetisation impact: Consumers’ buying sentiment hits 9-month low in December

Mumbai: The purchasing sentiment of Indians during December fell steeply by 0.42 points due to demonetisation with the Buying Propensity Index (BPI) standing at 0.26 points, a nine-month low, according to TRA Reserach. The BPI in November 2016 had stood at 0.68 points.

ReutersReuters

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“The country’s buying sentiment was consistently recovering since July 2016, but the surprise demonetisation announcement was the biggest factor causing unnatural fluctuations in the buying sentiment as reflected by the Index,” TRA Research CEO N Chandramouli said on Thursday.

Noting that the buying sentiment in December has fallen precipitously to the lowest in nine months, he said the the December drop was probably when the pain of demonetisation began to be felt more severely after the first salary cycle.

The Index, based on research across 3,000 consumer-influencers across the eight tier I cities, found that Delhi was most severely impacted with a month-on-month fall of 122 percent in citizen keenness to buy, registering a negative sentiment in December at -0.14, followed by Kolkata with a BPI fall of 90 percent.

The three cities which showed a medium fall in BPI were Mumbai (58 percent), Pune (46 percent) and Chennai (35 percent), while, Bengaluru and Hyderabad had a lower negative impact of the note ban with a drop of 16 percent and 15 percent, respectively.

First Published On : Jan 6, 2017 08:12 IST

Demonetisation impact: Manufacturing PMI contracts in December after cash ban

New Delhi: Hit hard by the demonetisation move, manufacturing sector contracted in December as new work orders and output took a knock for the first time in 2016, a monthly survey showed today.

The Nikkei Markit India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) — an indicator of manufacturing activity — fell to 49.6, down from 52.3 in November.

The index came in below the crucial 50 threshold — which separates contraction from expansion — for the first time in 2016 in December.

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Reuters

“Having held its ground in November following the unexpected withdrawal of Rs 500 and 1,000 bank notes from circulation, India’s manufacturing industry slid into contraction at the end of 2016,” said Pollyanna De Lima, Economist at IHS Markit and author of the report.

Lima added that “cash flow issues among firms also led to reductions in purchasing activity and employment”.

Survey participants widely blamed the withdrawal of high-value rupee notes for the downturn as cash shortage in the economy reportedly resulted in fewer levels of new orders.

Businesses also highlighted challenging conditions in external markets, with a fall in new businesses from abroad ending a six-month long growth.

Though December saw a mild decline in manufacturing output, the average reading for October-December remained in the “growth terrain”, suggesting a positive contribution from the sector to overall GDP in the third quarter of 2016-17, the survey said.

“With the window for exchanging notes having closed at the end of December, January data will be key in showing whether the sector will see a quick rebound,” Lima added.

The report said the higher prices paid for a range of raw materials made average cost burden increase for the 15th straight month in December, with the rate of inflation picking up since November.

First Published On : Jan 2, 2017 12:26 IST

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