Top Stories’Banks Not Passing Benefits Of Multiple Cuts In Policy Rates To Customers’: Plea In SC Seeks Extension Of RBI Loan Moratorium, Fixation Of Lending Rates LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK7 Aug 2020 7:02 AMShare This – xA writ petition has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking the extension of the loan moratorium announced by the Reserve Bank of India beyond August 31 for a period of 18 months.The petition filed by Coimbatore Jewellery Manufacturers Association also seeks a direction to the RBI to fix the lending rates of banks by contending that “banks have failed to pass on the benefits of reduced rates…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginA writ petition has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking the extension of the loan moratorium announced by the Reserve Bank of India beyond August 31 for a period of 18 months.The petition filed by Coimbatore Jewellery Manufacturers Association also seeks a direction to the RBI to fix the lending rates of banks by contending that “banks have failed to pass on the benefits of reduced rates of interest to their customers despite multiple cuts in policy rates (repo, reverse repo and bank rate) made by RBI”.It was on March 27 that the RBI Governor, Shaktikanta Das, announced the decision allowing banks and lending institutions to allow moratorium for term loans from March 1 to May 31. On May 22, the moratorium period was further extended till August 31.The writ petition filed Coimbatore Jewellery Manufacturers Association states that the economy is yet to recover from the losses inflicted by the COVID-19 pandemic and the nationwide lockdown. It is pointed out that several regions of the country continue to be under lockdown.”Thus, most businesses, including those of the members of the Petitioner association have not been able to restart operations. The crisis has worsened because of workers employed by the members of the Petitioner association, shifting back to their home states.The Petitioners submit that periodic extensions in the moratorium period will lead to further economic uncertainty and speculation. It is in this background that the Petitioners seek a direction that Respondent No.2, fix the moratorium period to 18 months”, reads the plea filed through Advocate Pranjal Kishore.Benefits of reduction in policy rates not passed on to the customersAnother issue highlighted in the petition is regarding the non-reduction of lending rates by the banks in proportion with the cutting down of policy rates by the Reserve Bank of India.It is pointed out that the repo, reverse repo and bank rates have been reduced on 5 separate occasions since 2019. The repo rate was reduced by a total of 135 basis points in 2019. These reductions in policy rates have been accompanied by a reduction in the Statutory Liquidity Ratio (“SLR”). The SLR which stood at 19.25% in April, 2019 has now been reduced to 18%.The following table is incorporated in the petition to highlight the issue:”It is clear from a bare perusal of the above, that banks have not reduced interest rates in accordance with the reduction in policy rates by the Respondent No.2. As such, even though Respondent No.2 has reduced these rates in order to provide succour to citizens, it is banks that have profited from these reductions”, the plea states. Despite the repo rate, the reverse repo rate and the bank rate being the lowest ever, there has been no corresponding decline in the rate of interest on loans given out by banks.It is pointed out that the Ministry of Finance had issued a directive in September 2019 “to link all new floating rate personal or retail loans (housing, auto, etc.) and floating rate loans to Micro and Small Enterprises extended by banks with effect from October 01, 2019 to external benchmarks.” These external benchmarks include the repo rate, government of India treasury bill yield etc. The petitioner laments that despite this directive, banks have failed to reduce interest rates of even floating interest rate loans.The petition states that the RBI has the power to fix the lending rates as per Section 21 and 35A of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949.The petitioner submits that the power to issue directions under Section 21 and 35-A is coupled with the duty to act in the public interest.”It is humbly submitted that the Reserve Bank of India has taken various policy decisions in order to reduce the rate of interest on loans advanced by banking companies. However, the benefits of these decisions have not percolated to citizens, because of banks failing to reduce the rates of interest on advances. It is thus submitted that this is a fit case for the Respondent No.2 to exercise its powers under Section 21 read with Section 35A of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 in order to fix the rate of interest at which loans are advanced by banking companies”, the plea states.The plea also seeks waiver of levy on interest during the moratorium period. The accrual of interest defeats the purpose of Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS), states the petition.On July 27, a bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan, R Subhash Reddy and M R Shah issued notice on the petition. The petition has been tagged along with the batch case challenging the levy of interest during the moratorium period and will be taken up next on August 28.Senior Advocate Sanjay Hegde appeared for the petitioner. Next Story
The National has announced a run of intimate performances in select cities ranging from New York to Paris scheduled for this April. The brief run of concerts is being billed under, “A Special Evening With The National,” and will begin with a performance a France’s Paris at Olympia on April 16th.Following the opening night in Paris, the band will head to London for a show at the Royal Festival Hall on April 18th, followed by scheduled stops at the Beacon Theatre in New York, NY (4/22); Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto, ON (4/24); and the Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles, CA (4/26).Related: Eaux Claires Music Festival Announces Hiatus For 2019The upcoming performances mark the first shows for the band in 2019. The alternative rock band toured heavily in 2018 following the 2017 release of their seventh studio album, Sleep Well Beast. They also celebrated the 10-year anniversary reissue of 2007’s Boxer in 2017 as well. The band also marked an end to their busy 2018 this past fall when they hosted a mix of performers ranging from Jason Isbell and Phoebe Bridgers for their two-day, “There’s No Leaving New York” weekend event at New York City’s Forest Hills Stadium this past September.Other performances on the band’s upcoming 2019 concert schedule include appearances throughout the summer months at Bonnaroo, Spain’s Mad Cool Festival, and Italy’s Ypsigrock Festival, just to name a few. They’re also scheduled to team up with Florence + The Machine for a performance in London’s Hyde Park on July 13th.Tickets for New York, Toronto, and Los Angeles concerts will begin general on-sale this Saturday, March 2nd at 10 a.m. Local. The Paris and London concerts will go on sale starting the following Monday, March 4th at 10 a.m. Local. Fans can click here for tickets and information.
TEAM Evolution’s Akeem Wilkinson turned in an impressive ride on the roadways of West Demerara to upset a field of Guyana’s top cyclists and win the 15th edition of the Ricks&Sari/Reagan Rodrigues Cycling road race on Sunday last..The 46-mile race began at Schoonord, West Bank Demerara and proceeded to Bushy Park, East Bank Essequibo before returning to the starting point for the climax.The overall winners of the Ricks & Sari/Reagan Rodrigues Memorial Cycling road race pose with their trophies and prizes.Wilkinson followed a breakaway which included Curtis Dey, Warren Mc Kay, Paul DeNobrega, Jornel Yearwood, Jamaul John, Horace Burrowes and Alanzo Ambrose, but the youngster worked his way back into the peloton and managed to draw level with the pack at Vreed-en-Hoop on the return leg.Down the back stretch was where Wilkinson produced his best work and sprinted to the finish line ahead of the big guns, winning the race in a time of one hour 37 minutes 55.82 seconds. Dey took second place, while Borrowes placed third followed by Alonzo Ambrose, Lear Nunes and Jornel Yearwood in that order.Michael Anthony grabbed two primes with Warren McKay, Paul DeNobrega, Anthony, Briton John, Andre Green, Marlon Williams, Christopher Griffith winning one each. Ajay Gopilall won the junior category, while Jason Sampson placed second and Jonathan Ramschuit third. Burrowes won the veterans division ahead of Nunes and Mc Kay in that order.
Conservative pundit Ann Coulter spoke to students and guests Sunday night in the Ronald Tutor Campus Center Ballroom as part of a speaking tour to promote her new book, Never Trust a Liberal Over 3 — Especially a Republican.The conversation with Coulter, who has written nine New York Times best-sellers, was moderated by Jim Hughes, a writer whose work has been featured in and on Politico and Fox News.The event was co-sponsored by the Political Student Assembly, the USC College Republicans and the Hancock Park Patriots, a grassroots Tea Party organization in Los Angeles.Mark Sonnenklar, president of the Hancock Park Patriots, said he was happy Coulter was on hand for the event.“She brings a lot of attention anywhere she goes,” Sonnenklar said. “If Ann Coulter can support the USC College Republicans and the Hancock Park Patriots, that’s really a good thing.”Coulter did not originally expect to be speaking at USC.“I was just doing this fun little Tea Partier event and then they combined with the USC College Republicans,” Coulter told the Daily Trojan.Coulter and Hughes discussed the high points of Coulter’s book, a collection of her favorite weekly columns from the past 12 years. The talk combined the controversial satire and biting wit Coulter is known for with her more serious thoughts on the future of the Republican Party.After describing how she envisioned each MSNBC host committing suicide, Coulter turned the conversation to improving the Republican Party’s chances in the 2016 election and beyond.“Half of the candidates running in GOP primaries shouldn’t be running at all,” she said.Coulter also criticized the special interest groups that take candidates’ focus away from the voters, citing “the role of consultants, ego and greed” as a negative force in American politics.Before the event, a group of students gathered to demonstrate their opposition to Coulter’s views.One of the protesters was Nora Snyder, a senior majoring in international relations and Middle East studies.“The political rhetoric in this country is the most polarized it’s ever been,” Snyder said. “When [Coulter] comes out making statements that are anti-Islam, anti-[lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender], anti-Hispanic and anti-rational speech, we’re out here to show that not all Trojans support that type of rhetoric.”Ultimately, both the protesters and the event organizers agreed that it was important for Coulter to be given the chance to speak.“The First Amendment protects everybody, even those people we don’t agree with,” Snyder said. “She can say her piece, and we can say ours.”Jennifer Massey, president of the USC College Republicans, said the last-minute opportunity provided the rare chance to bring a conservative speaker to campus.“We wanted to bring another opinion to school and let the students decide, because we don’t get a lot of conservative speakers on campus, if any at all,” Massey said.Massey also praised the PSA, who worked with the College Republicans to put together the event, for helping bring speakers from both major political parties to USC.“The PSA is supposed to be a nonpartisan organization that helps bring speakers to campus, and they have been such a great help to me and the USC College Republicans,” Massey said.When asked if she was happy that the event had inspired a demonstration, Massey was emphatic in her support.“Absolutely. I believe in free speech, and the USC CR believes in free speech,” she said.Coulter, who also spoke at a meet-and-greet prior to the talk, criticized those who said she shouldn’t speak on campus.“I think the ones who are happy to have me here are very, very smart,” Coulter said. “I think the ones who are unhappy to have me here are a little stupider.”Eric Dubbury, a junior majoring in music industry and a member of the USC College Republicans, said the event was a shining example of encouraging a diversity of opinions on campus.“What our club has been trying to promote is giving the opportunity for any of these speakers, even if we disagree with them, to give them the freedom to speak their views,” Dubbery said. “So far it’s been collaborative, positive thought as to what is happening here promoting freedom of speech for these events for everyone involved, including those who disagree with us.”Several other students, even those who did not agree with Coulter’s political views, were also appreciative of the pundit’s strong opinions.Sameer Suri, a sophomore majoring in communication and creative writing, captured the spirit of the love-hate relationship many students said they felt toward Coulter.“I don’t agree with her, but how can you not love a woman who writes a column called ‘Attack France!’ and closes it with the line, ‘What are they going to do? Fight us?,’” Suri asked. Follow Nathaniel on Twitter @Haas4Prez2036