Sebi for stronger action in high-profile insider trading cases

News4u-Business Desk- To send across a strong message to manipulators, capital market regulator Sebi is mulling over ways for more stringent enforcement actions in cases of high- profile and glaring violations of insider trading norms.

A revision of nearly two-decade old set of insider trading regulations is currently underway and the new norms are expected to be put in place in about a month after clearance from the Sebi board, a senior official said.

At the same time, efforts are being made to comply with a principle of dealing more stringently with glaring violations and high-profile cases, he added.

While the new insider trading norms are being framed as per wide-ranging reforms suggested by a Sebi-appointed panel, the regulatory body’s International Advisory Board (IAB) has also suggested significant changes in Sebi’s insider trading regulations to bring them at par with global best practices.

Insider trading — dealing in securities with prior access to unpublished price-sensitive information — has been attracting regulatory attention worldwide. However, certain outdated provisions of existing norms have been misused by the offenders to escape regulatory action.

The IAB has also suggested that “heavy penalty along with naming and shaming may be used as a major deterrence to insider trading and other offences in the securities market”.

Sebi was also asked to “publicise major insider trading cases through various means including in a separate section on Sebi website for easier access”, while IAB also sought provisions to compensate victims, if any, of such offences.

In an Action Taken Report on suggestions made by IAB, Sebi said that its orders are made public through various forums whenever there are major enforcement actions on Fraudulent and Unfair Trade Practices or Insider Trading.

Besides, Sebi website is also being revisited for better dissemination of information from users’ perspective, the regulator said.

On dealing more stringently with glaring violations of high-profile nature, Sebi said that “efforts are being made to comply with such principle”, while it has also issued internal guidelines for adjudicating officers which envisage stringent penalty for insider trading.

On heavy penalty and ‘naming and shaming’ measures, Sebi said that the regulations provide for heavy penalty of Rs 25 crore or three-times of ill-gotten profits, whichever is higher, for the offence of insider trading.

The regulator said that the orders imposing heavy penalty are put up in public domain and a press release is also issued, while giving example of a huge penalty of Rs 1,850 crore it recently imposed in the matter of Satyam fraud.

On provisions to compensate victims, Sebi said that the “nature of insider trading offence is such that it is impracticable to ascertain which shareholders had actually lost because of an offender’s trade”.

While Sebi does not have power to compensate, it can disgorge ill-gotten profits, and restitution is possible from disgorgement amount if victims of a fraud are identifiable.

The new amendments to the Sebi Act provides for explicit power of disgorgement, while the Investor Education and Protection Fund regulations have been amended to provide for restitution, the regulator said.


Sebi

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Beyonce, Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry big winners at MTV VMAs

News4u-Entertainment Desk- Beyonce, Miley Cyrus and Katy Perry ruled the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards, by picking up the biggest honours including Michael Jackson Video Vanguard award, Best Video and Best Female Video respectively.

Beyonce won the ‘Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award’. The award essentially acted as the VMA’s ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’. Beyonce and husband, Jay Z won the award for Best Collaboration.

The 32-year-old pop star also won best cinematography and best video with a social message for ‘Pretty Hurts’.

21-year-old Cyrus, who returned to the prize-giving a year after causing a stir with her raunchy routine with ‘Blurred Lines’ singer Robin Thicke, was all about the message this year.

She chose to use her Video of the Year acceptance speech for ‘Wrecking Ball’ to pay tribute to homeless youths.

Perry won best Female Video for ‘Dark Horse’ ft Juicy J beating Lorde’s ‘Royals’ and Beyonce’s ‘Partition’.

Lorde went on to win Best Rock Song for ‘Royals’, beating the Arctic Monkeys, Black Keys, Imagine Dragons and Linkin Park.

It wasn’t all female winners, though, as Ed Sheeran beat Eminem, John Legend, Pharrell Williams and Sam Smith to win the Best Male Video award for ‘Sing’.

Drake won Best Hip Hop Video beating Eminem, Kanye West and Wiz Khalifa. Fifth Harmony took home the Artist to Watch award. Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj and Jessie J kicked off the ceremony with Grande singing her hit ‘Break Free’, followed by Nicki Minaj giving a jungle-themed performance of her new track ‘Anaconda’.

Other performance highlights included Sam Smith with his hit song ‘Stay With Me’ and Maroon 5, who made their Vmas debut with a performance of ‘Maps’ outside of the venue.

Iggy Azalea and Rita Ora also hit the The Forum stage for their first-ever live performance of ‘Black Widow’.

Hollywood funnyman Robin Williams, who passed away earlier this month, was remembered during the award ceremony.


MTV VMAs

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‘Gandhi’ filmmaker Richard Attenborough dies at 90

News4u-Entertainment Desk-Oscar-winning British filmmaker Richard Attenborough, renowned for his critically-acclaimed biopic on Mahatma Gandhi, has died at the age of 90.

The actor’s son, Michael Attenborough said that his father died at lunchtime on Sunday.

He had been in poor health for some time.

Lord Attenborough won an Academy Award for best director for ‘Gandhi’, one of many highlights of a distinguished career that spanned six decades, on both sides of the camera.

One of Britain’s leading actors before becoming a highly successful director, he appeared in films like ‘Brighton Rock’, World War II prisoner of war thriller ‘The Great Escape’ and later in blockbuster ‘Jurassic Park’ as a theme park developer.

Remembered fondly also as Kriss Kringle in a remake of ‘Miracle on 34th Street’, but his greatest success was ‘Gandhi’, a film that won eight Oscars, including best picture.

Lord Attenborough had been in a nursing home with his wife for a number of years.

He had also been in a wheelchair since falling down stairs six years ago. His family is expected to make a full statement today. Paying his tribute, British Prime Minister David Cameron tweeted:”His acting in “Brighton Rock” was brilliant, his directing of “Gandhi” was stunning - Richard Attenborough was one of the greats of cinema.”

Along with his naturalist brother David Attenborough, Lord Attenborough was one of Britain’s best-known screen celebrities.

One of the original West End cast for the stage play ‘The Mousetrap’, he started acting at the age of just 12, making his professional stage debut aged 18.

He made his film debut in 1942 as a terrified warship’s crewman in ‘In Which We Serve’.

He was appointed a CBE in 1967 and knighted just nine years later in 1976 andwas made a life peer in 1993.


Richard Attenborough

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PM to launch ‘Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana’ on Aug 28

News4u-News Desk-The ‘Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana’, an ambitious financial inclusion scheme under which the government intends to provide every household with a bank account and insurance cover, will be launched on 28th August by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The scheme, about which Modi made the announcement in his Independence Day speech, will be launched across the country simultaneously amid his emphasis that it lies at the core of “our development philosophy of ‘Sabka Sath Sabka Vikas’”.

As a first step, under the scheme, every account holder will get a ‘RuPay’ debit card with a Rs one lakh accident cover.

“As we go along, they will be covered by insurance and pension products,” the Prime Minister said today while announcing the decision about the launch.

Modi, who has sent an email to all bank officers, said bank account for each household is a “national priority” and they should try their best to ensure that no one is left without a bank account.

Describing the task as “gigantic,” he said, “We need to enroll over 7 crore households and open their accounts.

This is a national priority and we must rise to meet this challenge.

There is an urgency to this exercise as all other development activities are hindered by this single disability.

I am sure we will overcome this situation collectively.”


Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana

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New Lokpal rules to be notified soon

News4u-News Desk-Government will soon notify new rules for modifying mandate of Lokpal search committee, tasked with recommending names for appointment of chairperson and members of the anti-corruption body.

The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) is finalising the new rules in consultation with the Law Ministry, official sources said.

The search committee is likely to get power to recommend people for chairperson and members of Lokpal from outside the list, to be provided by the DoPT, for consideration of Prime Minister-led selection committee, they said.

As per the existing rules, an eight-member search panel is tasked to draw up a panel of persons for consideration by the selection committee.

The search panel has to choose these persons from among the panel provided by the DoPT.

A committee headed by Attorney General (AG) Mukul Rohatgi had also submitted to the Centre its report on amendments in the Lokpal search panel rules.

The committee was formed to look into any legal complications for bringing in changes in the search panel rules, which were formed by the last UPA government.

The committee’s report has been examined by the DoPT and the new rules are likely to be notified soon, they said.

The government will go ahead with appointments of Lokpal only after the amendments are carried out in the rules, the sources said.

In a related development, the DoPT has recently renewed delegation of power to decide on matters handled by it.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will decide on all matters relating to Lokpal, CVC and anti-corruption legislation under newly-formed delegation of powers on works handled by the DoPT.

The UPA government could not go ahead with the much- touted appointment of chairperson and members of Lokpal due to BJP’s objection to the selection procedure.

The Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act provides for the establishment of a Lokpal for the Union and Lokayuktas for the states to inquire into corruption charges against public functionaries.

The Lokpal selection committee, led by the Prime Minister, has as its members the Lok Sabha Speaker, Leader of Opposition in the Lower House, the Chief Justice of India or a judge of the apex court nominated by him, and an eminent jurist who could be nominated by the President or any other member.


Parliament

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Pak troops fire at 40 BoPs, 24 villages along IB

News4u-News Desk-Extending ceasefire violations to Samba district, Pakistan troops heavily shelled and fired upon 40 Border Out Posts (BoPs) and 24 villages along the International Border in Jammu and Samba districts, leaving three persons injured.

BSF troops gave a befitting reply by responding strongly with equal caliber weapons to Pakistan’s firing which resulted in heavy exchange of fire, which continued till 0700 hours, a BSF officer said.

“Pak Rangers resorted to heavy firing of small and automatic weapons and shelling of mortars bombs on 35 to 40 BoPs and civilian areas along IB in Arnia and R S Pura sub-sectors of Jammu district from 2130 hours last night” the officer said.

This is the first time that Pakistani Rangers have extended the ceasefire violation to Samba district.

Pakistan targeted BoPs and Border hamlets along IB in Arnia, R Pura, Kanachak, Akhnoor sub-sectors of Jammu district and Ramgarh sector of Samba district.

As per the official reports, Pak also targeted 24 Border villages throughout the night till this morning.

“Although there was no human loss, three civilians have been injured in Pak shelling.They included two people in Flora village and and one in Khothar besides injuries to cattle in Jora Farm area in R S Pura belt”, Sub-Divisional Police Officer (SDPO), R S Pura, Devender Singh said.

Pakistani rangers rained 52mm and 82-mm mortar shells apart from using LMGs, MMGs and automatic weapons on at least 40 BoPs and 24 border hamlets triggering panic and fear among the people living along the border in Jammu and Samba districts.

There have been 21 ceasefire violations in less then a fortnight and 23 in the month of August.

Since July 16, there have been 33 ceasefire violations.

Meanwhile, BJP National President Amit Shah and MoS PMO Jitendra Singh are visiting people who have migrated from border hamlets and are put up in safe shelters in R S Pura today


J & K Map

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Pak crisis deepens; Qadri issues 48-hour deadline to govt

News4u-News Desk- Pakistan’s political crisis deepened on Monday with cleric Tahir-ul-Qadri giving a fresh 48-hour ultimatum to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to step down after a former top Election Commission official backed protesters’ allegations of rigging in last year’s polls.

Buoyed by former additional secretary Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) Afzal Khan’s claim that the general election in which Sharif won by a landslide was rigged, protesters headed by Qadri and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan stepped their campaign against the government.

“I ask the members of National Assembly to leave the house before my deadline expires,” Qadri said addressing his supporters outside the Parliament.

“All the credit for this struggle goes to the people,” he said.

Qadri blamed the ruling PML-N for letting the situation escalate to this stage. Qadri said on the twelfth day of the protest, it was now transforming into a “revolution”.

The PAT chief alleged that the procedure followed to select the election setup and the way the polls were held, assemblies were formed, was in clear violation of the Constitution.

“We consider the government unconstitutional from the very first day,” Qadri said.

Qadri gave the 48-hour deadline to the government, asking it to dissolve the assemblies, let the FIR of Model Town incident in which 14 of his supporters were killed be registered and release Joint Investigation Team (JIT) report.

He also demanded that Prime Minister Sharif and his brother Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif be arrested.

In an interview to a private TV channel last night, Afzal Khan had alleged, that former chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice (retd) Tassaduq Hussain Jillani, Justice (retd) Riaz Kayani and former Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Fakhruddin G Ebrahim were involved in the rigging.

Khan retired on May 17 last year.

Kayani today refuted Afzal Khan’s allegations, terming them as bogus and a conspiracy.

He said Khan had leveled false allegations, because he had not being given a service-extension.

“Election 2013 unravelling as ppl come forward 2 give evidence of planned rigging. Latest is confession of Retd Add Sec ECP M Afzal Khan,” Imran Khan tweeted.

“BUT Nawaz Sharif resignation necessary so all those in the know & willing to testify are given security & protection,” he tweeted.

No talks took place today between the government and protesters. Three rounds of negotiations have failed to break the deadlock that has now lasted for 12 days.


Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif

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SC refuses to entertain PILs challenging NJAC bill

News4u-News Desk- The Supreme Court today refused to intervene “at this stage” on the issue of constitutional validity of the amendment by which collegium system for appointment of judges in higher judiciary was scrapped and a new mechanism under National Judicial Appointment Commission (NJAC) was proposed to be put in place.

Declining to entertain a batch of petitions challenging the 121st constitutional amendment and the NJAC bill, a three- judge bench headed by Justice A R Dave said the PILs are “premature” and allowed the petitioner to approach the court at a later stage.

“We are of the view that the petitions are premature. It’s open for the petitioners to approach the court at later stage on the same ground,” the bench also comprising justices J Chelameswar and A K Sikri said.

The bench, which had especially assembled to hear the petitions against the NJAC bill, gave a patient hearing for one-and-a-half hour but refused to interfere at this stage regarding the bill.

Four PILs had been filed in the apex court for declaring the NJAC move as unconstitutional, days after Parliament passed two bills to scrap the collegium system for appointments in higher judiciary and to provide a new mechanism in its place.

The PILs had been filed by former Additional Solicitor General Bishwajit Bhattacharya, advocates R K Kapoor and Manohar Lal Sharma and Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association.

The lawyers had submitted that the 121st Constitutional Amendment Bill and the NJAC Bill, 2014, passed by Parliament were unconstitutional as they violate the basic structure of the Constitution.

“The Constitution itself recognises a clear demarcation separating the judiciary from the executive under Article 50 of the Constitution which is the underlying strength for a sound judicial system.

“It would be relevant to point out here that Article 50 of the Directive Principles of the State Policy under the Constitution is not only applicable to the lower judiciary but is also applicable to the higher judiciary as the doctrine of separation of power and the independence of the judiciary were basic immutable features of the Constitution,” Kapoor had submitted.

Bhattacharya had contended that shifting of power of the Chief Justice of India, to take a decision in every appointment of Supreme Court and high court judges and in every transfer of judges from one high court to another, “would be destructive of the independence of the judiciary and the doctrine of separation of power, both basic features of Indias Constitution.”

Rajya Sabha had on August 14 approved with overwhelming majority the 121st Constitution Amendment Bill along with the NJAC bill, a day after Lok Sabha gave its nod to the measures.

Lok Sabha had passed the bill with a crucial amendment suggested by opposition Congress that was accepted by the government.


The Supreme Court

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Thai army chief assumes prime minister post

News4u-News Desk- Thailand’s army chief Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha, who seized power in a military coup three months ago, on Monday became the country’s prime minister, the first serving army officer to assume the top office in 22 years.

Gen Prayuth assumed the new post following an endorsement from King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who appointed him as the country’s 29th prime minister this morning.

In a break from tradition, he received a written royal command at a ceremony at Army Headquarters. Civilians who take on the job receive the command at the Government House.

Bhumibol, who is 86 and in poor health, was not present at the ceremony.

Prayuth received the royal command in front of the King’s portrait.

Gen Prayuth, currently head of the military junta created National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO), said that he was ready for the job.

“I am ready to get tired,” he said.

The army seized power on May 22from the embattled prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra, who was forced by a court to step down on May 7 for abusing power and violating the constitution.

Gen Prayuth is the first serving military officer to assume the post of the prime minister since then-Gen Suchinda Krapayoon, who took office on April 7, 1992.

Gen Suchinda’s term ended after only 47 days following the Black May uprising that threw him out and re-installed a democratic regime.

During his four-year tenure as army chief, Gen Prayuth has appointed many reliable military men to key positions, Bangkok Post quoted observers assaying.

Gen Prayuth is likely keep the post of defence minister, the paper said quoting unnamed sources. He is set to retire from the army on September 30.

The Prime Minister said he would submit his Cabinet line- up for a royal endorsement by October.

He unveiled the timeframe in his speech after his formal appointment.

He vowed to work with integrity to solve national problems by giving priority to the people and the country.


Thailand’s army chief Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha

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Rebels parade captured soldiers as Kiev marks independence day

News4u-News Desk- Pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine paraded dozens of captured soldiers before a jeering crowd in mockery of Independence Day celebrations in the capital.

Ukraine’s pro-Western government had sought to boost morale with an upbeat military parade to mark the country’s independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.

Speaking on Sunday to a crowd of thousands in the iconic Independence Square, known locally as the Maidan, President Petro Poroshenko decried Russian “aggression” and said he was “convinced that the battle for Ukraine, for independence, will be our success”.

But it was a markedly different scene in the eastern rebel stronghold of Donetsk, where around 40 or 50 captured government soldiers were paraded through the city’s central Lenin Square as onlookers hurled garbage and empty bottles at them.

“You are killing children!” screamed some in the crowd at the prisoners, who walked with heads bowed and their hands behind their backs before being placed on two buses and taken to an unknown destination.

The grim scene appeared designed to recall the famous moment in 1944 when thousands of captured Nazi soldiers were paraded through Moscow on Stalin’s orders.

Human Rights Watch deputy director Rachel Denber said on Twitter that the event amounted to “humiliating and degrading treatment” of prisoners and was therefore in breach of the Geneva Convention.

Ukraine and the West blame Russia for supporting the separatist insurgents still clinging on to territory after four months of fighting in the restive east.

“War has come to us from over the horizon where it was never expected,” Poroshenko told the crowd in the Maidan, many of whom sported the blue and yellow national colours and traditional dress as they celebrated the first military parade in five years.

He said some of the equipment rolling through the Maidan, which included tanks and Grad missile systems controversial for the indiscriminate damage they have caused in the east would be sent from the display straight back to the front lines, where over 700 soldiers have died since April.

“In the 21st century, in the centre of Europe, there is a flagrant attempt to breach the border of a sovereign state without declaring war,” he said.


Rebels parade captured soldiers as Kiev marks independence day

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