News Wire

Corporate India’s dollar debt is the hidden factor

The reasons for the depreciation of the rupee range from obvious - the slowing of export growth and the even pace of imports leading to a widening current account deficit - to the sublime - the disproportionate dependence on capital flows in the form of capital invested by foreign institutional investors in the stock market which have seen a sharp outflow from India up to the tune of $23.7 billion in the past year. While this explains the recent weakness of the rupee, the sharp decline is still a puzzle. Wealthy Indians in the country have been sending money abroad at an alarming rate. Remittances by resident Indians shot up from $72.8 million in 2006-07 to a staggering $440.5 million in 2007-08.

Congress, Trinamool combine geared to draw scores with Left

Out of 42 Lok Sabha constituencies in West Bengal, the Left Front is contesting all - CPI(M) in 32, the RSP in four, and the CPI and Forward Bloc in three each. The Opposition “Mahajot” comprising mainly the Congress, the Trinamool Congress of Mamata Banerjee and other smaller parties including the Leftist SUCI are opposing the Left Front. While Trinamool has put up 27 nominees, the Congress is contesting in 14 seats while one has been given to the SUCI. This is the first time in its 32 years of rule, the Left front is faced with a crisis because of the change in social dynamics which can substantially upset the electoral calculations if one only analyses the results of the last Lok Sabha elections. Following is a brief analysis for each of the 42 seats with an indication as to which party at present enjoys an advantage for the 2009 general elections:

Deserters have field day in Bihar

Last minute deserters are not only being welcomed by parties but are being given tickets in preference over their own candidates. And leading the pack in Bihar is the Janata Dal (United) Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.