Monthly Archives: October 2021

Mother Africa

This is an interesting and absorbing 15 part documentary series by BBC on the history and origins of mankind in Africa with Zeinab Badawi.

In the first part, she goes to the Hadza tribe of hunter gatherers in northern Tanzania. They live today exactly as our ancestors must have lived millions of years ago – by hunting for food with weapons made by themselves, by lighting a fire not by using matches but by ancient means how our ancestors must have created fire. The men hunt and women forage for tuber roots and small animals to eat.

The documentary also has an interview with one of the Leaky brothers to describe how human evolution must have taken place, what differentiates today’s homo sapiens from animals – the use of our hands, larger brains, ability to solve complex problems and language most of all.

Another dimension is why did humans originate in Africa and not in the other continents and the answer to that lies in the fact that Africa had lush vegetation with plenty of plants and fruits to eat besides it was teeming with wild life and therefore meat.

Seems to be an interesting documentary series. Need to see where it goes further and further. You can watch the documentary here.

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Billed as a comedy drama, Malayalam film “Mithunam” (1993) is pretty much a depressing movie on the state of affairs in Kerala.

Mohanlal is trying to set up a biscuit manufacturing facility, but as usual he does not have money for the same, and the govt. officials are making him run from pillar to post denying him crucial factory licenses for corruption. In the meanwhile he has also to reckon with his unending family squabbles all around with his brother, brother in law. His inability to pay rent, he gets cheated, loses money, so pretty much a guy who is not smart, bogged down with numerous problems and his love interest with Urvashi.

He disappoints his wife in every which way possible, not being romantic, forgetting anniversaries, not taking her to honeymoon, in effect a bumbling husband. All in all a pretty much depressing & boring movie. IMDB 1/10

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MCA relaxation

MCA has vide its circular no. 17/2021 dated 29th October, 2021 relaxed the additional filing fees in respect of annual filing forms i.e. AOC-4, AOC-4 XBRL, AOC-4 CFS, MGT-7 & MGT-7A for financial year ended 31st March, 2021. Forms will not attract additional filing fees upto 31st December, 2021.

But it was already given this situation because the MCA had earlier on, extended the last date for holding AGM for companies with year ending as 31st March, 2021 from 30th September to 30th November. So under the rules, companies had one month time to file the AOC forms and two months for the MGT forms.

Copy of the said circular can be read here.

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current accounts of stock brokers

SEBI has vide its circular dated 28th October, 2021 allowed stock stock brokers to maintain multiple current accounts in various banks/ branches in various cities for various purposes such as client accounts, settlement accounts, exchange dues accounts as they may require. This has been necessitated due to the RBI circular dated 6th August, 2020 clamping down on current accounts being maintained where the account holder also has a borrowing account with the same bank. But considering the hue and cry raised by the industry, RBI later on 14th December, 2020 gave some relief by way of regulatory intervention. IRDAI had issued a similar such circular to its insurance intermediaries.

You can access the copy of the above circular here i.e .

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gold monetization scheme

RBI has added a couple of clauses to its Gold Monetization Scheme 2015, basically to take care of interest payments when there is death of the depositor, before or after the lock in period and cases where loan has been taken against the gold deposit and there is default in the loan repayment.

The amount payable to the depositor in such cases will be calculated as a sum of (A) and (B), as indicated below:

(A) Actual market value of the gold deposit on the day of withdrawal.

(B) Interest payable on the value of the gold for the period of deposit at the applicable rate.

There are penalties in case of premature closure of the gold deposit scheme, which is less in case of death of the depositor and slightly more in case of loan default.

Copy of the RBI circular can be accessed here.

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Mystery in Sudan: The Lost Pharaohs

Interesting documentary on the pharaohs of Sudan, something that is not very well known to the world is the civilisation in Sudan which pre-dates that in Egypt itself.

The Mahdi king ruled over a vast area including Egypt for more than 5000 years. And there are pyramids galore in Sudan though not well kept because they are off the famous tourist circuit.

David Adams takes a mix of journeys from river to train to foot to camel back to bus to travel from Dongola to Khartoum enroute touching upon Karima, Meroe, El Kodab, Khartoum and talks of the life and ancient cultures of Sudan. He refers to the dervishes, nuba wrestlers, the battle of omdoman with Lord Kitchener’s army butchering thousands of Mahdi warriors after the dervish army routed the British some years before.

Its quite a fascinating documentary and its a rich learning of the Sudanese past pre-dating the Egyptian civilization by thousands of years. You can watch the documentary here.

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benchmarks of mutual funds

SEBI has laid down guiding principles for benchmarking of mutual funds by introducing a two tier structure in the case of income/ debt oriented schemes and growth/ equity oriented schemes, single tier in case of hybrid/ solution oriented schemes, thematic/ sectoral schemes, exhange funds/ ETFs, and Fund of Funds schemes. Please read on for details

  1. In order to standardize and bring uniformity in the Benchmarks of Mutual Fund Schemes and taking into account the recommendations of Mutual Fund Advisory Committee (MFAC), it has been decided that there would be twotiered structure for benchmarking of schemes for certain categories of schemes. The first tier benchmark shall be reflective of the category of the scheme, and the second tier benchmark should be demonstrative of the investment style / strategy of the Fund Manager within the category. All the benchmarks followed should necessarily be Total Return Indices.
  2. The following are the guiding principles for first tier benchmarks:
    i. For Income / Debt Oriented Schemes
    First Tier: One Broad Market Index per Index Provider for each category e.g.: NIFTY Ultra Short Duration Debt Index or CRISIL Ultra Short Term Debt Index for Ultra Short Duration Fund Category
    Second Tier: Bespoke according to Investment Style/Strategy of the Index e.g.: AAA Bond Index
    ii. For Growth / Equity Oriented Schemes
    First Tier: One Broad Market Index per Index Provider for each category e.g.: S&P BSE 100 Index or NSE 100 Index for Large Cap Fund Category
    Second Tier: Bespoke according to Investment Style/Strategy of the Index e.g.: Nifty 50 Index
    iii. For Hybrid and Solution Oriented Schemes:
    There would be a single benchmark, i.e., Broad Market Benchmark wherever available or bespoke to be created for schemes, which would then be applicable across industry.
    iv. For Thematic / Sectoral schemes:
    There would be a single benchmark as characteristics of the schemes are already tapered according to the theme/sector.
    v. For Index Funds and Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs):
    There would be a single benchmark as these schemes replicate an underlying index.
    vi. For Fund of Funds Schemes (FoFs):
    Similar to Index Fund and ETFs, if a FoF scheme is investing in a single fund, then benchmark of the underlying scheme shall be used for corresponding FoF. However, in case a FoF scheme invests in multiple schemes, then Broad
    Market Index shall be applied.
    vii. For Other Schemes:
    Depending on underlying asset allocation, Broad Market benchmark may be arrived at.
  3. AMFI is advised to publish:
    (a) Benchmarks intended to be used by AMCs as first tier benchmarks within a period of one month from the date of issuance of this circular.
    (b) Benchmarks intended to be used as first tier benchmark by AMCs for open ended debt schemes as per the Potential Risk Class Matrix on or before December 1, 2021.
  4. The second tier Benchmark is optional and shall be decided by the AMCs according to Investment Style/Strategy of the Index.
    Applicability of the circular
  5. The framework specified by AMFI as referred at para 3(a) above shall come into force with effect from December 1, 2021 and the framework specified by AMFI as referred at para 3(b) above shall come into force with effect from January 1, 2022.

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penalty on Vasai Sahakari Bank

RBI has levied a fine of Rs.9 million on Vasai Vikas Sahakari Bank Limited for non-compliance with the directions issued by RBI on “Management of Advances – UCBs”, “Income Recognition, Asset Classification, Provisioning and Other Related Matters – UCBs”, with the specific directions issued to the bank vide RBI’s letter dated November 22, 2018 and with the provisions of section 31 read with section 56 of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 (the Act).

From this it is not clear what exactly is the nature of non compliances or violations for which the RBI has levied the penalty. It would be better if RBI uploaded the entire adjudication order on the site just like SEBI does in case of non compliance or violations of the various SEBI regulations. This is not helping at all.

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no bite in the WI bowling

West Indies doesn’t look like a potent bowling side, in fact they do not have any wicket takers in their side in the T-20 world cup.

143-8 is not a bad total to defend in T-20s. Many teams have won with even with lower totals than that. But the fact that they got only one South African wicket that of Reeza Hendricks and that too because of a spectacular catch by Hetmeyer off Hosein says a lot.

Dwayne Bravo, Ravi Rampaul, Andre Russell, Keiron Pollard are not the kind of bowlers that will set the turf on fire. The youngsters are still good, but they have too many of aging superstars in their side. Time will tell.

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The Nubian Caravans

Fascinating documentary on the Nubian Caravans of Sudan.

Its actually quite a magnificent documentary on the harsh nomadic life of people in Sudan. It is presented in a narrative form with only one Doctor who studied in Romania talking about his tribe of people.

The documentary takes the viewers to Sinkat, the Hedendoa warriors, Sowakin, Jumna tribes, Bukhara tribes, Cassara mountains and the Rashida tribes. Each tribe has a different culture and tradition, some are pure nomads, some are settlers, some are rich, in terms of jewellery and some are rich Arabs who come from Saudi Arabia to purchase camels from here.

The camels also vary from one tribe to another, some camels are prized ones, some are fast, most are solid carriers of course. Water and vegetation is scarce in these parts, but where there is water body system, the marine life is rich in those parts.

The camera work and cinematography of the documentary is quite breathtaking to say the least. You can watch the documentary here.

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ageing Windies

I was shocked to see the West Indies side that took to the field in its first match against England side in the ongoing T-20 world cup cricket.

Shocked to see an ageing and tired side – Chris Gayle is 42 and deals only in boundaries and sixes, Then there is Dwayne Bravo and Keiren Pollard and Andre Russell, all were looking tired and lost on that day when they were bowled out for mere 55 runs. But the height of it was Ravi Rampaul, brought back to the international side after a 6 year hiatus.

What’s happening, where are the youngsters in the Windies side. T-20 as a format is suited for youngsters mostly as we have seen good catching and superb fielding wins matches for teams.

To be fair, some of the youngsters in the team do have a hope – Akeal Hosein took a spectacular catch and Nicholas Pooran is also a batter with immense potential. I have not watched much of Shimron Hetmeyer so will not be able any opinion on him. But i thought the selectors should have gone with young guns rather than these old guards.

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competitive Lankans

Nice competitive play by Sri Lanka against Bangladesh in the T-20 world cup.

When the Bangladesh team was batting the Lankan side looked dispirited and out of sorts against some disciplined batting by Bangladesh. Plus that fracas by Lahiru Kumaru against Liton Das early on.

And even while they were batting, with 79-4 it looked almost all but over, but for some disciplined hitting by two of their youngsters Charith Asalanka and Bhanuka Rajapaksa. A strong Sri Lanka side augurs well for the future.

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4.84 kms

4.84 kms evening run with the kiddo, weather was quite okay with clear skies. Have a great evening guys.

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5.12 kms

5.12 kms evening walk with the kiddo. Walking with the traffic is immensely stressful. But a good long walk nevertheless.

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telegraph right of way

The Central Government has notified the Indian Telegraph Right of Way (Amendment) Rules, 2021 on 21st October 2021 to incorporate the provisions related to nominal one-time compensation and uniform procedure for establishment of Overground Telegraph Line in the Indian Telegraph Right of Way Rules, 2016. The amount of one-time compensation for establishment of overground telegraph line will be maximum one thousand rupees per kilometre. Documentation for RoW application for overground telegraph line has been made simple. Also, there will be no fee other than Administrative fee and Restoration charges for establishing, maintaining, working, repairing, transferring or shifting the underground andovergroundtelegraph infrastructure.

These amendments will ease Right of Way related permission procedures for establishment and augmentation of Digital Communications Infrastructure across the country. With a robust pan India digital infrastructure, the digital divide between rural-urban and rich-poor will be bridged; e-governance and financial inclusion will be strengthened; doing business will be easy; information and communication needs of citizens and enterprises will be fulfilled; and ultimately the dream of India’s transition to a digitally empowered economy and society will be translated into reality.

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