Reliance Jio to make domestic voice calls free from Jan 1

Reliance Jio announced that all off-net domestic voice calls from its network to other networks anywhere in India will be free from January 1, 2021. This has been done because interconnect usage charges (IUCs) for all domestic voice calls are coming to an end from Friday. In September 2019, telecom regulator TRAI had extended implementation of IUC on mobile-to-mobile calls beyond January 1, 2020, after which Jio began charging its customers for off-net voice calls.

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India’s fiscal deficit reaches 135% of budgeted target during April-November

The Union Government’s fiscal deficit soared to Rs 10.75 lakh crore or 135.1% of the 2020-21 Budget Estimates (BE), during April-November 2020. This is mainly on account of the low realisation of revenue due to disruption in business activities amid the Covid-19 pandemic. The government’s total receipts stood at Rs 8.30 lakh crore (37% of BE 2020-21) till the end of November 2020. [Fiscal Deficit is the difference between the total income of the government (total taxes and non-debt capital receipts) and its total expenditure] 

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Eight core industries’ output contracts 2.6% in November

Contracting for the ninth consecutive month, the output of eight core infrastructure sectors dropped by 2.6% in November. This has been mainly due to a decline in the production of natural gas, refinery products, steel, and cement. The production of eight core sectors had recorded a growth of 0.7% in November 2019, as per data released by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. The output of crude oil, natural gas, and refinery products declined by (-)4.9%, (-)9.3%, and (-)4.8%, respectively, in November 2020.

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L&T Construction wins significant orders in overseas, domestic markets

Larsen & Toubro (L&T) Ltd announced that its construction arm has received orders in the overseas and domestic market. The orders fall under the ‘significant’ category, which ranges between Rs 1,000 crore and Rs 2,500 crore. L&T stated that its power transmission and distribution business has won two transmission line packages in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Its water and effluent treatment business has secured an EPC (engineering, procurement, and construction) order in Gujarat to execute a package in the SAUNI Yojna Link 3. 

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Jubilant FoodWorks to acquire 10.76% stake in Barbeque Nation for Rs 92 crore

Jubilant FoodWorks Ltd (JFL), on Thursday, said it will invest Rs 92 crore into Barbeque Nation Hospitality Limited for an equity stake of 10.76%. The company will acquire 36,50,794 fully paid-up equity shares of the face value of Rs 5 per share in the casual dining restaurant chain. The transaction is expected to be completed by January 25.

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BHEL receives orders worth Rs 3,200 crore for hydro projects

Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) has secured orders valued at Rs 3,200 crore for Electro-Mechanical (E&M) works for a Hydro Electric Project (HEP) in Andhra Pradesh and E&M works of pump-motor sets for lift irrigation schemes (LIS) in Telangana. BHEL’s scope of work in the above projects includes design, engineering, manufacturing, supply, and supervision of erection, testing & commissioning of the equipment. The above orders have been received from the EPC contractor for these projects- Megha Engineering & Infrastructure Ltd.

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IRCTC launches upgraded version of e-ticketing website and app

Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, on Thursday, unveiled a more passenger-friendly and upgraded version of the IRCTC e-ticketing website and mobile application. Passengers will now be able to book tickets, meals, and accommodations at the same time. The website has in-built features for enhancing cybersecurity by using appropriate captchas. Predictive entry suggestions using AI will be given to the passengers when they enter a station. The website will also have simpler checking of the refund status on the user accounts page.

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Tejas Networks wins international order worth $13 million

Tejas Networks Ltd has received a purchase order amounting to $13 million (~Rs 94 crore) from a leading telecommunications service provider in South East Asia. As per the contract, Tejas Networks will supply and install its TJ1400 ultra-converged broadband products to extend high-speed broadband services to underserved rural communities in the region. The project is expected to be executed within the next 12 months.

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CCI gives nod to Jamnalal Sons to acquire 51% stake in Mukand Sumi Specialty Steel

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has approved the acquisition of 51% of the equity share capital of Mukand Sumi Special Steel Ltd (MSSSL) by Jamnalal Sons Private Ltd (JSPL). The proposed combination entails the acquisition of 51% of the equity share capital of MSSSL from Mukand Limited and its nominees by JSPL. A nominal number of equity shares of MSSSL (not more than 60), which are being acquired by JSPL, shall be held jointly by JSPL and certain individuals. This is to comply with the minimum shareholding requirements under the Companies Act, 2013.

Glenmark Pharma receives USFDA approval for Tadalafil tablets

Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd has received final approval from the United States Food & Drug Administration (USFDA) for Tadalafil tablets USP. The tablets are indicated for the treatment of erectile dysfunction and enlarged prostate. The approved product is a generic version of Cialis tablets of Eli Lilly and Company. According to IQVIA sales data for the 12 months ending November 2020, Cialis tablets achieved annual sales of approximately $125.5 million (~Rs 913 crore).

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