Foreign money lines up for Reliance Capital’s ARC pie
Suitors include JP Morgan, George Soros, Goldman Sachs and Bank of America

Last November, the government had allowed FDI up to 40% in asset reconstruction companies (ARCs) which buy out non-performing assets of banks, which now stand at over Rs. 65,000 cr.

Desi team promises super computer
A team headed by Dr. Narendra Karmarkar (of Karmarkar algorithm fame) is trying to develop a very fast super computer. The team is working with Computational Research Laboratories (CRL), a subsidiary of Tatas.

Post IPO passage for VC funds goes
The SEBI has removed the provision that allows venture capital funds to sell their stake in a company after an initial public offering. They need to stay invested at least for a year before they can sell their stake in such firms.

This was done by SEBI to prevent “pre-IPO flipping” – i.e., buying shares in a company just prior to its listing and selling them for quick gains.

Govt. likely to bar dollar seats on local bourses
A restrictive clause is being built in the regulations which will keep out foreign portfolio investors from the boards of bourses.

In many countries there are fetters on foreign investment in stock exchanges with investment ceilings ranging from 5 to 15% in Australia.

Dr. R.A. Mashelkar is the Director General of CSIR (Council for Scientific and Industrial Research)

Cosmopolitan cities
Essentially cosmopolitan here means having variation in circulation of different regional language newspapers in the city.

Top 3 cosmopolitan cities in India: Mumbai(5.43), Nagpur(5.27), Hyderabad(4.78)

Pushkar festival in Rajasthan
The festival takes place in the month of Kartika (October-November). It begins on the 8th day of the lunar calendar and continues till the day of the full moon.

Cattle fair and Mahasnan (holy dip) are the prominent events.

Many foreigners visit Pushkar. This year about 12000 foreigners are expected to visit Pushkar during the festival.

India’s vehicle exports
Currently India exports 8,00,000 vehicles of which about 1,75,000 are cars, 5,00,000 are two wheeles and 77,000 are three wheelers.

PML Act to be amended
The Prevention of Money Laundering Act is about to be amended by India. These amendments will bring terrorism financing and customs offences under the glare of PML Act.

FATF – Financial Action Task Force, a Paris based inter-governmental organization launched in 1989, has sought for making insider trading in stock-markets also a money laundering offence. But the government is not in favour of doing so.

The amendments are significant as the monetary authorities in US, Europe and Singapore are not satisfied with the existing framework to curb money laundering in India and hence are not allowing out banks to freely operate and open branches in their countries.

BPO sector exports
India’s BPO sector exports stood at $6.3 bn in 2005-06 and are expected to cross the $8 bn mark in the current fiscal.

India’s middle class
India has about 100 mln people who have an annual per capital income of a little under $2000 and about 325 mln people whose annual per capital income is about $700.

India’s international students
Currently there are at least 500,000 students going abroad to various countries every year to pursue higher education.

Bologna Process: it aims at removing the differences between education systems across Europe and unifying it with global standards.

India’s jewellery exports:
Are about Rs. 20,000 cr or $4 bn

Mira Nair, the film maker
She is noted for her films: ‘Salam Bombay’ and ‘Monsoon Wedding’ – works which presented the lesser known faces of India before the global audience.

She is currently doing a film on Beatles, the rock group.

India’s ATMs
There are currently about 17,000 ATMs in India.

China has about 1,20,000 of them.

Foreign trade as a proportion of GDP
It is about 26% of the GDP currently.