News digest: India Inc on GDP, PM Modi, SBI lending rate, and more

With 8.2% strong GDP growth, India Inc sees animal spirits coming back


What may have otherwise been dismissed as a mundane meeting turned out to be a setting for hope when around 60 India Inc leaders gathered at a premium hotel in the capital on Saturday. As part of the national council of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), these top businessmen had in the last quarter meeting discussed the perils of a sluggish economy. Three months later, the business chamber’s closed-door council meeting signalled a turnaround in mood, with the 8.2 per cent GDP growth number fresh in everyone’s mind. Read more here



PM Modi blames phone-a-loan scam under UPA regime for NPA mess


Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday accused the previous Congress-led UPA government of running a phone-a-loan scam where loans were handed out to select businessmen at the behest of namdars (dynasts), creating huge amounts of non-performing assets in the banking sector.


“The Congress had put the economy on a landmine. Our government brought out the true picture of NPAs and the scam of the previous government,” he said. Read more here



Centre establishing legal framework to regulate online sale of medicines


The government is putting in place a legal framework to regulate online sale of medicines.


On Saturday, the government released the draft rules allowing one-point registration for e-pharmacies and fixing procedures for sale. The draft provides for patient data protection. The details of patients cannot be shared with anyone except government authorities.


The Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, governs sale of medicines in India. Medicines can be sold from licensed premises only. The Act does not cover e-pharmacies at present and the government had decided to appoint a sub-committee, after receiving complaints of violations. The draft released on Saturday is based on the sub-committee's recommendations. Read more here



SBI hikes lending rates by 20 bps across all tenures up to 3 years


Home loans are set to become costlier as the country's largest lender, State Bank of India (SBI), has raised its marginal cost of funds-based lending rate (MCLR), the floor rate at which banks lend.


The bank increased its lending rates by 20 basis points (bps) across all tenures up to three years. SBI's lending rates range from 8.1 to 8.65 per cent as of Saturday, according to the bank's website. The lending rates previously were in the range of 7.9-8.45 per cent. Read more here


Car manufacturers witness flat domestic sales due to Kerala floods


The fast-growing domestic car manufacturing industry witnessed a flat performance in the month of August, impacted by floods in Kerala and heavy rainfall in several other states. Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai, the top two manufacturers, reported a year-on-year decline of 3.6 per cent and 2.8 per cent, respectively, in domestic sales. Only two companies — Tata Motors and Toyota — managed to buck the trend with double-digit growth. Read more here