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India’s journey back to permit raj Arvind Panagariya has become the latest in a series of intellectual casualties under the Modi regime. Not so long back, the former Chief Economist at Asian Development Bank and Professor of Economics at the Ivy League Columbia University was Modi’s handpicked man for National Institution for Transforming India Aayog, better known as NITI Aayog, the replacement PM Modi brought in for Planning Commission.

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The Professor left his job as Vice-Chairman of NITI Aayog in August citing that Columbia University was not extending his leave, but it was everyone’s guess what had gone wrong. To start with, NITI Aayog was toothless, just a convenient think-tank that the ruling dispensation ‘innovated’ to destroy India’s venerated Planning Commission that used to ensure that not all economic planning power is concentrated with Centre but federally distributed to states. Secondly, despite his deep knowledge in Economics (he is a PhD in Economics from the venerated Princeton University), as well as his decades of work experience with World Bank, International Monetary Fund, World Trade Organization, and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, it was clear that no one in the Government took this renowned economist’s views seriously. For instance, almost every quarter or even more frequently, Arvind Panagariya used to remind the Government and RBI that interest rates should be much, much lower for Indian economy to pick up again. While Dr. Raghuram Rajan agreed with him in principle, his hands were tied as Modi and Jaitley did scant to create the room for a deeper interest cut in the banking system. But the final straw for Prof. Panagariya’s unceremonious exit came in the form of a devastating demonetization program and the recklessly irresponsible farm loan waiver in India’s most populous state of Uttar Pradesh. It was clear for Panagariya that his kind of economic wisdom wasn’t needed in this new India anymore.

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Just like Rajan, the Indian born economist became the next intellectual casualty under this regime. But what is so unkind and even self-defeating for BJP is how Panagariya was recently attacked by ever yone from Subramanian Swamy to Ashwani Mahajan of RSS-backed Swadeshi Jagran Manch for a recent opinion piece he wrote for a national daily. He was promptly branded a ‘foreigner’ for his US passport. Didn’t BJP know it when he was made Vice Chairman of NITI Aayog? Such vicious attacks of course stem

from the fact that Prof. Panagariya has written something that is undeniable with facts and figures. And it doesn’t take rocket science to decipher what this Columbia economist has written, unlike many of his peers. Even more disturbing for BJP is the fact that Panagariya has categorically proved that India’s economic progress in recent decades was solely due to the economic liberalization policies of former Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao / Dr. Manmohan Singh combine and its further progression under Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Dr. Singh as PM. To quote Panagariya himself, “India became the first democracy to achieve 8%-plus growth for nine years beginning in 2003-04,” on these policies. The Professor has warned that it is quite clear that Modi Government has been increasing duties arbitrarily on several goods from December 2017 onward, which has gathered pace through GST implementation and Budget 2018, on the pretext of furthering protectionism.

The Professor writes, “Increases in duties on a long list of products ranging from kites and footwear to cellular mobiles phones and motor vehicles in Budget 2018 have ended (my) optimism.” The economist is most disturbed at the way the Government has brought back a discredited duty regime called Phased Manufacturing Program (PMP) that was dumped into history’s dustbin by Dr. Manmohan Singh in his New Industrial Policy of 1991, for being entirely counterproductive. Panagariya also warns that this kind of arbitrary duty increases across the board is nothing but a pullback to the country’s ancient License Raj / Permit Raj that ensured that India grew only between 2-4% a year before 1991. He also systematically destroys the argument that such duty rises are for favoring MSMEs and SSI units, with facts and figures, proving that their plight was worst in

the License Raj, and improved exponentially only after the economic liberalization of 1991. Panagariya’s arguments may be sound, but the greater worry it unleashes is this Government’s penchant for growing its revenue exponentially on one hand, and a lack of full transparency in coming out with the details of large international deals like the new Rafael deal with France. And despite all these increased revenue, Modi Government’s record on job creation has been a total washout. No sector or constituency is safe from sudden jerky movements from this regime, like how the stock market investors found out recently when a sudden introduction of 10% Long Term Capital Gains Tax on equity investments helped wipe off 10 lakh crore of investors’ wealth within a week. Even some of Government’s staunchest supporters in India Inc voiced concern over the move stating that taxing 1 year investments under LTCG was so illogical, as 1 year is never long-term in equities, and besides that ever yone knows that the LTCG exemption which was there for more than a decade now has been one of the driving forces behind India’s booming investor sentiment. Similarly, the hasty implementation of GST has sent the smaller businesses reeling, just like how demonetization affected the rural customers and farm loan waivers affected the banking system and MFIs, none of which are yet out of the doldrums. It is remarkable how even governments that rose to power on huge popular waves start planning their own demise when they ignore history and repeat mistakes of theirs and their predecessors. As Prof. Arvind Panagariya quotes American philosopher George Santayana in his article,"Those who cannot remember the past, are condemned to repeat it."




No marks for guessing which state in India attracts most investments every year. It is Maharashtra itself, home to India’s economic capital of Mumbai, and being the state that accounts for 25% of India’s industrial output and over 23% of its GDP. But for years, Maharashtra had kept silent when newly emerging growth hubs like Karnataka in South to Haryana in North to Gujarat in West kept on harping about how they were leading in investments into the country. But now CM Devendra Fadnavis is rightly claiming Maharashtra’s numero uno position in industrial investments by hosting an international investment summit in February, by projecting some unique credentials – the state still attracts 50% of all FDI into India, its MoU conversion rate is 51%, and it’s economy is still growing at around 10%. A dream drives the CM now – to grow the state into a trillion dollar economy within the next 7-8 years. The dream seems achievable, and Seasonal Magazine identifies 12 reasons why Maharashtra is still India’s most attractive investment destination. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


THERE ARE 29 STATES AND THEN THERE IS MAHARASHTRA! Seasonal Magazine recently caught up with Subhash Desai, Maharashtra’s Industries’ Minister, for an in-depth interview on the backdrop of Magnetic Maharashtra Global Investors Summit 2018:

IN A BID TO IMPROVE INFRASTRUCTURE, CM FADNAVIS STRESSES ON TRANSPORT HUB IN PUNE Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis directed the state metro rail corporation and the state road transport corporation to plan for execution of the Swargate-Integrated Multi-Modal Transport Hub in Pune.

SEWRI-WORLI ROAD PROJECT GETS A SHOT IN THE ARM WITH AN AMBITIOUS PLAN A major road project, that has been in the pipeline for the last few months, got an impetus with a slight tweak of plan. A portion of the stretch will also be underground.

MUMBAI TO GET TWO RESIDENTIAL PROJECTS THROUGH A JOINT PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN TWO REAL ESTATE GIANTS Shapoorji Pallonji Real Estate and Nirmal Ltd have joined hands to develop two residential projects that would be in the tune of around Rs. 3000 crore. The project will be launched in the next 6 months.

MAHARASHTRA GOVERNMENT TO PROVIDE SANITARY PADS AT JUST RS. 5 TO SCHOOL-GOING GIRLS a noble gesture, the state government will bear the burden of a Rs. 12.75 crore subsidy that will come as a relief to lakhs of school-going girls who will benefit from cheaply-available sanitary pads.

MUMBAI’S HANCOCK BRIDGE TO GET A NEW LEASE OF LIFE Mumbai’s iconic Hancock bridge is set to make a reappearance after the civic standing committee gave the green signal to the project’s construction, two years since it was demolished.

FIRST GPS-ENABLED TOLLING BOOTH WILL BE ALONG DELHI-MUMBAI CORRIDOR The road transport and highways ministry is set to launch the pilot for a global positioning system (GPS)-based tolling project on the Delhi-Mumbai corridor, a move seen as a game changer for road passengers as well as infrastructure companies.

MAHARASHTRA GOVERNMENT HOPES TO LAND A JACKPOT THROUGH ONLINE LOTTERY After experiencing quite a scare due to the GST implementation, Maharashtra witnessed its lowest spending in the last three fiscal years in 2017-18. Now, the government has sniffed an opportunity to boost revenue through the lucrative online lottery business.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING COULD SOON BECOME A REALITY IN MUMBAI In what is likely to be a boost for cheap housing, the Maharashtra government has approved DP 2034 that will be an indicator in deciding the city’s land use and infrastructure development.



In a bid to promote wines made in the 40-odd vineyards and wineries in Nashik district in north Maharashtra, the state government has organised its first wine festival — ‘India Grape

The Maharashtra government announced its financial technology (fintech) policy under which it aims to facilitate setting up of 300 fintech start-ups in the State. Maharashtra is the first



Devendra Fadnavis’ government has sped into action, reaffirming the promise made by Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, to ease container traffic problems through the setting up of comprehensive logistics parks as part of a policy that will enhance the state’s reputation as a major maritime hub.

Navi Mumbai Special Economic Zone Pvt. Ltd—promoted by Reliance Industries Ltd chairman Mukesh Ambani, Jai Corp. India, SKIL Infrastructure Ltd and City and Industrial Development Corp (CIDCO)—will be developed in phases and be open to industrial units in 2019.




The 16th US President, Abraham Lincoln, stored important documents inside the crowns of his hats. Lincoln, who often wore a traditional stovepipe hat measuring about seven-eight inches high, was born on February 12, 1809. Known to be the tallest American President at 6 feet 4 inches, he was also a wrestler and a licensed bartender.

MEMES OF MALAYALAM ACTRESS PRIYA EMERGE AS SONG GOES VIRAL Memes of Malayalam actress Priya Prakash Varrier emerged after the song 'Manikya Malaraya Poovi' went viral on the internet. "So let's declare this girl as the National Crush now," read a tweet. Another user wrote, "Expressions given by those 2 minutes were more than what Nargis Fakhri and Katrina...couldn't give in their entire career." Comedian Zakir Khan tweeted, "#KeepCalm&BeSakht."

CABINET CLEARS DIRECT ADMISSION TO PHD IN IITS AND IISC The Union Cabinet has cleared the proposal allowing direct admissions to PhD programmes in IITs and IISc under the Prime Minister Research Fellowship scheme. This move will allow graduates or final-year students of B Tech, integrated M Tech or M Sc in the field of science and technology to be offered direct admissions to pursue PhD in IITs and IISc.

AFTER RS 200CR BUYOUT, OLA TO INVEST ?400CR IN FOODPANDA INDIA Ola's parent ANI Technologies is reportedly planning to invest Rs 400 crore ($62.2 million) in Foodpanda India after acquiring the food delivery platform for over Rs 200 crore ($31.7 million) in December. The investment is part of Rs 1,285 crore ($200 million) ANI Technologies committed to the company during the acquisition. The funds aim to bolster Foodpanda India's logistics and delivery capabilities. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


The US is planning to turn the International Space Station (ISS) into a private enterprise and stop funding it after 2024, according to the Washington Post. The ISS is currently operated by Boeing on behalf of US space agency NASA. ISS operations were previously subcontracted to SpaceX and Orbital ATK to outsource cargo supply flights to the



The Centre has drafted a plan to check the flow of sewer water into the river Ganga by installing sewage treatment plants (STP) in 10 major cities. These cities reportedly contribute about 65% of the total polluted water flowing into the river. As per an official of National Mission for Clean Ganga, these STPs would ensure 100% sewage treatment.


The portrait of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa was unveiled in the Tamil Nadu Assembly on Monday by Speaker P Dhanapal. Opposing the move, the main opposition DMK boycotted the event claiming that Jayalalithaa was convicted in a disproportionate assets case. The state government defended the portrait, highlighting steps taken by the former CM for women's empowerment.

FLIPKART LOSES APPEAL AGAINST ?110CR TAX DEMAND BY I-T PANEL Flipkart has lost the appeal against Rs 110 crore tax demand by Income Tax panel, on behalf of the tax assessed for financial year 2015-16. Flipkart has been asked to deposit about Rs 55 crore as tax and Rs 55 crore as bank guarantee by February 28. The tax has been levied by the I-T department to make e-commerce companies reclassify discounts.

TERRORISTS WERE IN J&K FOR 10 MONTHS, DID RECCE OF ARMY CAMP The terrorists who attacked Indian Army's Sunjuwan camp on Saturday were reportedly operating in Jammu and Kashmir for the last 10 months and did the recce of the camp several times. "The terrorists were provided weapons and equipment through local overground supporters of Jaish-eMohammed in Jammu," sources said. Five soldiers were martyred and a civilian was killed in the attack.



Muslim parents of an adopted Hindu orphan in Dehradun have married him according to Hindu customs instead of Islamic rituals. The family, which adopted the boy when he was 12 years old, raised him as a Hindu and he said he grew up celebrating all the Hindu festivals. "My family has loved me and supported me in everything," he added.

Speaking at the World Government Summit in Dubai, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said that India's leap in World Bank's Ease of Doing Business Rankings from 142 to 100 is "unprecedented". He added, "We are not satisfied at this, we want to do better." He further said, "We will do whatever it takes to make it possible."



Dubai has started testing the world's first self-driving pods that can travel individually and can also couple together to behave like a bus. The pods, designed to travel short and medium distances at 20 kmph, can be coupled in 15 seconds and detached in 5 seconds. Each pod can carry 10 riders and last for 3 hours on single charge.

The face of United States' 16th President Abraham Lincoln is carved into Mount Rushmore, along with the faces of three other former US Presidents, namely George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Theodore Roosevelt. Lincoln, who was born on February 12, 1809, led the country through its Civil War and is credited with paving the way for the abolition of slavery.

DUBAI OPENS WORLD'S TALLEST HOTEL, BREAKS OWN RECORD BY 1 M The tallest hotel in the world, the 356-metre-high Gevora Hotel, has opened in Dubai. The 75-storey structure broke the record earlier held by JW Marriott Marquis, which is also situated in Dubai, by just one metre. The Gevora Hotel has 528 rooms, four dining options, a luxury spa and a swimming pool, among other facilities.



INSHORTS ANDHRA'S CHANDRABABU NAIDU IS RICHEST CM IN INDIA: ADR Andhra Pradesh's Chandrababu Naidu is the richest Chief Minister in India with declared assets worth over ?177 crore, the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) stated. Naidu is followed by Arunachal Pradesh CM Pema Khandu with assets worth over ?129 crore and Punjab's Amarinder Singh with ?48 crore. Tripura's Manik Sarkar with ?27 lakh is the CM with lowest declared assets.

WORLD BANK'S ?8K-CR PROJECT FAILS TO DECONGEST MUMBAI LOCAL The World Bank-funded Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP) 2, which aimed to decongest Mumbai's suburban railway network, has failed to yield the desired results after six years, a World Bank report has revealed. The project, which cost ?8,087 crore, failed to reduce overcrowding in the locals, decrease travelling time, and improve punctuality of trains, the report showed.



GOOGLE HAS CODENAMED ANDROID P 'PISTACHIO ICE CREAM': REPORT Technology giant Google has reportedly codenamed this year's Android 9.0 update as 'Pistachio Ice Cream' internally, according to reports. The name for 'Android P', which is expected to launch this year, follows Google's tradition of dessert-themed names for its operating systems. Earlier versions of Android were named Oreo, Nougat, Marshmallow, Lollipop, KitKat and so on.

I LOVE PAKISTAN BECAUSE I LOVE INDIA: MANI SHANKAR AIYAR Speaking at a function in Karachi, Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar said that he loves Pakistan because he loves India and that India should "love thy neighbour as thyself". "While Islamabad has accepted the policy of and need for continuous dialogue to resolve issues of bilateral importance, New Delhi has not," Aiyar added.

MINORITIES PANEL CHIEF URGES MUSLIMS TO GIVE UP AYODHYA LAND National Commission for Minorities Chairman Syed Ghayorul Hasan Rizvi on Monday urged Muslims to give up Babri Masjid and the disputed land in Ayodhya to Hindus for the construction of Ram Mandir. Adding that since 'Namaaz is no longer offered' in Babri Masjid, Rizvi said, "The place holds great significance for the (Hindu) community, but not for us."

CIVILIAN HOUSES NEAR ARMY CAMPS' BOUNDARY AN ISSUE: NIRMALA Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday said that construction of civilian houses adjacent to the boundary wall of Army camps is a problem across the country. "It is getting difficult to remove these constructions because these are taking place with permission," she added. Sitharaman, however, assured that she's studying the situation in the country and will come with a solution.


A British restaurant has broken the Guinness Record for the world's largest serving of fish and chips by cooking a meal weighing almost 55 kg. The meal comprised a nearly 28kg halibut, which was covered in batter and placed on a large portion of chips. Meanwhile, the previous record was held by a 47.75-kg serving of fish and chips.

INDIAN ENGINEER AWARDED AT SCI-TECH OSCARS 2018 Vikas Sathaye, an engineer from Mumbai, is part of a four-member team that bagged the 'Scientific and Engineering Award' at the Oscars 2018 Scientific and Technical Awards. The team was honoured for the development and implementation of Shotover K1 Camera System. The six-axis stabilised aerial camera mount gets attached to the base of helicopters and helps in shooting steady footage.


Sachin Tendulkar smashed five of his 42 centuries in India at Chennai's MA Chidambaram or Chepauk Stadium, the most for him at a single Indian stadium. Sachin's first-ever international hundred in India also came at Chepauk, when he hit 165(296) in a Test against England on February 12, 1993. Interestingly, Sachin hit all five centuries at the stadium in Tests.

HOLI-THEMED EVENT TO BE HELD AT INDIAN EATERY IN LONDON A Holi-themed event will be held at an Indian restaurant in London between February 26 and March 10. Guests can participate in 30-minutelong sessions wherein they will pelt paint at their family and friends, at the cost of ÂŁ12 (?1,000) per person. They will have to pay ÂŁ35 (?3,000) more for the five-course meal including gulab jamun and papdi chaat.

SAROJINI NAIDU NICKNAMED MAHATMA GANDHI 'MICKEY MOUSE' Indian poet and freedom fighter Sarojini Naidu was arrested during the Quit India movement and was jailed in 1942 with Mahatma Gandhi. It is said that she shared a pleasant relationship with Gandhi and often called him "Mickey Mouse". Popularly known as the 'Nightingale of India', Naidu was born on February 13, 1879.

UBER MANDATES 6-HR BREAK FOR US DRIVERS AFTER 12-HR SHIFT Cab-hailing startup Uber has made it mandatory to take a six-hour offline break for drivers in the US after every 12-hour shift. The new feature will fully block the use of the driver app for accepting trips during the break time. The move reportedly came in response to the issue of drowsy driving and driver fatigue reported by its users.

GOVT PLANS TO BUY 17,000 MACHINE GUNS, 6,500 SNIPER RIFLES The Centre is mulling over a proposal to purchase over 17,000 light machine guns (LMGs) and 6,500 sniper rifles for the armed forces. A meeting headed by Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman to decide on the ?2,000crore proposal is scheduled to be held on Tuesday. The sniper rifles would reportedly replace the Russian Dragunov rifles that are currently in use. SEASONAL MAGAZINE



12 REASONS WHY MAHA IS INDIA’S MOST ATTRA INVESTMENT DESTINAT No marks for guessing which state in India attracts most investments every year. It is Maharashtra itself, home to India’s economic capital of Mumbai, and being the state that accounts for 25% of India’s industrial output and over 23% of its GDP. But for years, Maharashtra had kept silent when newly emerging growth hubs like Karnataka in South to Haryana in North to Gujarat in West kept on harping about how they were leading in investments into the country. But now CM Devendra Fadnavis is rightly claiming Maharashtra’s numero uno position in industrial investments by hosting an international investment summit in February, by projecting some unique credentials – the state still attracts 50% of all FDI into India, its MoU conversion rate is 51%, and it’s economy is still growing at around 10%. A dream drives the CM now – to grow the state into a trillion dollar economy within the next 7-8 years. The dream seems achievable, and Seasonal Magazine identifies 12 reasons why Maharashtra is still India’s most attractive investment destination.






Attractive for Large Projects

Maharashtra is the third largest state in India by land area. At the same time it is only the second-most populous state of India, behind Uttar Pradesh, revealing a lower population density. The rural population density of Maharashtra is even lower since population density is much higher in its urban agglomerations like Mumbai, Pune, & Nagpur. What this means is that Maharashtra still has sufficient land for those large projects that require larger land parcels.




Attractive for Industrial Exporters

Maharashtra is most perfect for exporters of physical goods like industrial or automotive products as it has one of the largest coastlines in India, measuring up to 720 km, with well developed ports. The two principal sea ports are the Mumbai Port and the Jawaharlal Nehru Port, which is also in the Mumbai region. Apart from these, there are around 48 minor ports in Maharashtra, some which can be upgraded successfully in the near future.



Attractive for Consumer Companies

Whether we like it or not, we have to admit that investments coming into India, and for that matter – any country – is also to exploit selling to our consumers. What every country and region can plan for is to ensure that the state also benefits equally by way of employment from the presence of such global consumer companies. In this regard too, Maharashtra’s potential is immense as it is the world’s second mostpopulous subnational entity with 112 million inhabitants. But more than this, a significant percentage of this population is equipped to be employed with these consumer companies.




Attractive for Companies Looking for Affluent Customers

Maharashtra is India’s third-most urbanised state, despite its huge size. The economic capital of India, Mumbai, alone has a staggering population of 18 million inhabitants. Maharashtra’s per capita income or GDP per capita is also way above the national average – Rs.1,03,000 against India’s Rs. 73,000, making it one of the wealthiest states in India which can buy affluent goods.



Attractive for Manufacturing & SME Industries

Maharashtra is the most industrialized state in India, accounting for 25% of its industrial output and over 23.5% of its GDP. While programs like Make in India has tried to encourage manufacturing industries in emerging growth hubs like Gujarat, Haryana & Karnataka, this state already has what it takes to grow admirably in the manufacturing sector. It is well-known that manufacturing grows in a cluster approach, where hundreds or thousands of smaller ancillary units or SMEs are supplying to large industrial units. This has been the manufacturing culture in Mumbai, Pune and elsewhere in the state, which also makes it one of India’s largest SME hubs. SEASONAL MAGAZINE



Attractive Climate which is Salubrious

While a large state like Maharashtra in a tropical country like India cannot have a climate that is always pleasing to Westerners and those accustomed to milder climates, the state does have some unique features. For one, unlike in Delhi and North India, the temperature doesn’t go to extremes on either side. It varies between 12 degrees on the colder side to 39 degrees on the higher. Besides that Maharashtra has regions with diverse climates, so that investors can choose colder areas or regions without too much rainfall.



Attractive and Cosmopolitan Job Pool

Despite a strong Marathi ethos and culture, English is the language of choice in Mumbai, Pune and other urban areas. Besides that, Hindi is also well-established in both urban and rural areas. Significant populations from all states and territories from across India – north, south, east, & west – are living and working in Mumbai and Pune, making the job pool distinctly cosmopolitan unlike any other urban areas in India.




Attractive for Financial Sector Companies

Mumbai is India’s Shanghai. The capital of Maharashtra and the financial capital of India, it houses the headquarters of most of the major corporate and financial institutions. India's main stock exchanges and capital market and commodity exchanges are located in Mumbai. This is no accident as Maharashtra has the largest proportion of taxpayers in India and its share markets transact over 90 per cent of the country's stocks.



Attractive for Foreign Direct Investments

Maharashtra ranks first in FDI equity in India and percentage share of total FDI inflows to the state is at a staggering 32.28%.Total FDI inflows into Maharashtra during the last year was US$53.48 billion. Top countries that invested FDI equity in Maharashtra were Singapore, United Kingdom, United States, Netherlands and Mauritius.




Attractive for IT & Knowledge Based Industries

Contrary to popular opinion, Maharashtra is a powerhouse in software exports, accounting for 28% of the country’s IT exports. Maharashtra has a booming knowledge industry with the Pune Metropolitan area being the leading IT hub in the state. Approximately 25% of the top 500 companies in the IT sector are situated in Maharashtra.



Attractive for Companies Requiring Fast Logistics

Maharashtra has a large, multi-modal transportation system with the largest road network in India with the total length of surface roads in the state being nearly 3 lakh kilometres. Apart from the two major sea ports, for faster logistics and executive travel, Maharashtra has extensive air-links. Almost all the major cities of Maharashtra have airports. CSIA (formerly Bombay International Airport) and Juhu Airport are the two airports in Mumbai. The two other international airports in the state are Pune International Airport and Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport (Nagpur). Aurangabad Airport is also a major airport. SEASONAL MAGAZINE



Attractive for Entertainment & Media Companies

Mumbai ‘s Bollywood industry is the largest centre for film and television production in the country and a third of all Indian films are produced in the state. Multimillion-dollar Bollywood productions, including the most expensive ones are filmed there. Besides this it is home to the television industry as well as print media, which has proved to be a significant employer in the state's economy.






SEASONAL MAGAZINE RECENTLY CAUGHT UP WITH SUBHASH DESAI, MAHARASHTRA’S INDUSTRIES’ MINISTER, FOR AN IN-DEPTH INTERVIEW ON THE BACKDROP OF MAGNETIC MAHARASHTRA GLOBAL INVESTORS SUMMIT 2018: I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve,” wrote Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto regarding the unprovoked 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, USA, by forces of Imperial Japan, which caused America to join World War II, and ultimately brought about the defeat of Japan and other Axis Powers.

While it is hotly contested whether the Japanese Admiral actually said or wrote it, no quote would be truer on the effect of Pearl Harbor attack, and similar has been the effect of repeated announcements by various Indian states regarding their achievements on attracting investments, on the state of Maharashtra. Because, there are 29 states in India, and then there is Maharashtra. If you keep aside Maharashtra’s performance metrics from Indian numbers, the country’s GDP would shrink by 23% and its manufacturing output by 25%. Its neighbour Gujarat started this trend of bragging about investment numbers, and soon everyone from Haryana in North to West Bengal in East to Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh & Tamil Nadu in South were soon



seen joining this fray. More recently, the new state of Telengana too has mimicked it. However, all these states have done it prudently, looking from their own angle, as in reality they had to do a lot of catch up with a de facto leader like Maharashtra. The state also kept mum during the better part of this race for investments that is more than a decade old now. Because, whatever these states kept saying, Maharashtra continued to be a leader in attracting FDIs every year. But repeated media bombings regarding investments by these states have now inadver tently caused the giant of Maharashtra to awaken. Not now exactly, but three years back when a new NDA Government led by BJP & Shiv Sena stormed into power in 2014.

are a huge pat on the back, as the previous three years’ average FDI share was only 30%, which means Maharashtra is accelerating rapidly.

And the way Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis of BJP and Industries Minister Subash Desai of Shiv Sena have gone CM Fadnavis and Minister Desai have worked about it would remind anyone of Swami Vivekananda’s tirelessly to advance many famous exhortation to Indian dream projects in youth, “Arise! Awake! And stop Maharashtra that include not until the goal is reached.” Aurangabad Industrial City

The numbers are not without cause and they would only increase fur ther. Because, Maharashtra Government has its hands on the pulse of the industry, thanks to having the Economic Capital of India with them. Mumbai is headquarters to almost all banks and insurance companies, not to say anything about the bulk of large listed corporates in various sectors.

(AURIC), Shendra Bidkin This CM-Minister duo has Industrial Area (SBIA), overhauled almost all industrial policies, moved swiftly up the Supa Industrial Township ease-of-doing-business index, and Defence & Aerospace and have toured the world over Parks at Nagpur, Nashik together including USA, and Aurangabad. Europe & Far East as a cohesive team, for making That feel for the industry’s needs has made Maharashtra increase its lead much further. Maharashtra to keep on pioneering newer and newer Industrial Policies that are the envy of The numbers speak for themselves. Indian all other states. For instance, Maharashtra Government numbers itself show that during recently came up with two new policies that took the past year Maharashtra accounted for even the industry by surprise. A new policy for 51% of all FDI coming into India. In other the sunrise segment of Fintech, as well as a words, the remaining 28 states could new policy for the emerging group of women together garner only 49% of FDIs coming entrepreneurs or women-led startups. into the country, making them distant seconds, thirds and fourths. While Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis’ youthful vision leads the investment For CM and Industries Minister, the numbers SEASONAL MAGAZINE


MAGNETIC MAHARASHTRA - CONVERGENCE 2018 performance of Maharashtra, the deep experience of Industries’ Minister Subash Desai ensures that execution is at as much perfection as possible. Minister Desai is a veteran social worker from Goregaon, a booming suburb of Mumbai. He was handpicked by Shiv Sena Founder Babasaheb Bal Thackeray for his energy and achievements in social work even at a young age, and elevated in the party to handle top responsibilities.

A new sealink connecting Mumbai to Raigad District, called the Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL) or Sewri-Nhava Sheva Trans Harbour Link, is a proposed 21.8 km, freeway grade road bridge connecting Mumbai with Navi Mumbai. When completed, it would be the longest sea bridge in India. Then there is Mumbai’s Coastal Road which is a proposed 29.2-km freeway that would run along Mumbai's western coastline connecting Marine Lines in the south to Kandivli in the north.

As Guardian Minister of Mumbai City too, Subash Minister Desai has been instrumental in the rise Desai’s deep passion for the city has made these and development of Goregaon in recent years, projects possible, as he has toiled hard for and one of his most noted achievements there removing various roadblocks that has been as the Founder of were troubling these projects. ‘Prabodhan Goregaon’ that runs a blood bank, a dialysis centre, Coming to roads, it has True to his Shiv Sena heritage, generic drug stores, and various larger-than-life projects Minister Desai has been fearless other social, cultural and sporting in taking on competition from that no state can even activities. influential states like Gujarat head CM Fadnavis and Minister Desai have worked tirelessly to advance many dream projects in Maharashtra that include Aurangabad Industrial City (AURIC), Shendra Bidkin Industrial Area (SBIA), Supa Industrial Township and Defence & Aerospace Parks at Nagpur, Nashik and Aurangabad.

dream of like the Maharashtra Samruddhi Mahamarg or the NagpurMumbai Super Communication Expressway, connecting the JN Port in Mumbai with the multi-modal cargo hub in Nagpur.

They are also spearheading efforts to maintain and increase Maharashtra’s lead in integrated multimodal logistics, which more and more industries are now looking out for as the clincher while selecting states for investments. Apart from its national leadership in shipping due to the Jawaharlal Nehru Port, Maharashtra will soon commission its fifth international airport at Navi Mumbai. Coming to roads, it has larger-than-life projects that no state can even dream of like the Maharashtra Samruddhi Mahamarg or the Nagpur-Mumbai Super Communication Expressway, connecting the JN Port in Mumbai with the multi-modal cargo hub in Nagpur.

on using facts, figures and of course jokes in his inimitable style. When Seasonal Magazine quizzed him about the quality of investment meet MoUs, he was quick to point out a bizarre case of Gujarat Government including a tie-up with its own Women & Child Welfare Department to begin Anaganawadis as an investment meet MoU!

“But we work with real industries,” he added. Which rings true as its MoU conversion rate is a national leading 74%, when most states can’t even convert 30% of signed MoUs. And indeed, the Who-is-who of India Inc are there at Maharashtra, including domestic and international giants. These include names like Tata, Birla, JSW, Posco, Microsoft, Google, Apple, Persistent, Mercedes Benz, Volkswagen, Skoda, Mahindra, Bajaj, Bharat Forge, L&T, and many more. Seasonal Magazine in conversation with Subash Desai, Maharashtra’s Industries Minister and Guardian Minister of Mumbai. SEASONAL MAGAZINE




aharashtra being the third largest state, is especially suited for attracting projects requiring large land banks. What are the government's initiatives in promoting such projects using this natural strength? Do you have a GIS enabled industrial land bank? Yes, being the third largest state, we do have a lot of land available. Our lands are also superior by way of full supporting infrastructure like good roads, round the clock water supply and uninterrupted power supply. And industries are free to apply for land of their choice. However, to be better organized and streamline development, we have identified certain locations as new industrial areas. Examples are Aurangabad Industrial City (AURIC) and Shendra Bidkin Industrial Area (SBIA) both near Aurangabad, and part of Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC). These are specialized and integrated townships where plots of different sizes and for varied purposes have been developed, and many prominent industrial houses are setting shop here. Then there is Supa near Pune where a great number of plots are being made available. Another domain where we are focusing on is defence manufacturing and aerospace industries which require large and specialized land banks. For instance they need fire testing and certain common facilities. These parks are being developed at Nagpur, Nashik and also at Aurangabad. Such facilities



MAGNETIC MAHARASHTRA - CONVERGENCE 2018 are in good demand now, as it is according to Central Government’s push for Make in India and defence manufacturing. We are also making all our industrial land banks GIS enabled. While Maharashtra has been a traditional leader in manufacturing goods export, do you think it has lagged behind in recent years, when aggressive states like Gujarat and Tamilnadu came into direct competition with well-equipped ports as you have? Are there any plans to upgrade any of your minor ports to a major port like Mumbai Port or Jawaharlal Nehru Port? It is true that some of our neighbouring states have improved in recent years with good facilities, but we have not lagged behind a bit. Jawaharlal Nehru Port at Mumbai is still the largest container port in India. It accounts for more than half of total container volumes handled at India's 12 public ports and around 40 percent of the nation's overall containerized ocean trade. We remain the clear number one. However, we welcome healthy competition from other states to emerge. They will need many more years, if not decades, to catch up with Maharashtra in this regard. Meanwhile, we won’t be standing still, but improving our port facilities. With fast and integrated logistics emerging as one key concern of investors in this e-commerce age, what are Maharashtra's plans to augment its multimodal transportation network. Are there plans for any new major airports, roads, and logistics / warehouse parks? Yes, our main focus now is to improve holistically by growing the integrated multimodal logistics network in the state. We have developed and are improving upon a complete logistics ecosystem that is industry friendly. Apart from having the largest seaport, Maharashtra is home to four international airports, and the fifth one is now coming up at Navi Mumbai. The first flight from there will take off next

year itself. Coming to major road projects for logistics, we have several flagship projects. The Maharashtra Samruddhi Mahamarg or the NagpurMumbai Super Communication Expressway is one such project. This would be a fast-track, state-of-the-art expressway with feeder network connecting the hinterland of Maharashtra with the port in Mumbai and the multi-modal cargo hub in Nagpur, ensuring planned development along the Mahamarg. Then there is the proposed sealink connecting Mumbai to Raigad District. Called the Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL) or Sewri-

Nhava Sheva Trans Harbour Link, is a proposed 21.8 km, freeway grade road bridge connecting Mumbai with Navi Mumbai. When completed, it would be the longest sea bridge in India. The bridge will begin in Sewri, South Mumbai and terminate near Jawaharlal Nehru Port and will contain a 6 lane highway, which will be 27 meters in width. Then there is Mumbai’s Coastal Road which is a proposed 29.2-km freeway that would run along Mumbai's western coastline connecting Marine Lines in the



south to Kandivli in the north. All these will be very strategic projects for Maharashtra, and on such projects we will retain our leadership in industry friendly multimodal logistics. Maharashtra is having a huge population of 112 million inhabitants too, and how are you prioritising projects that generate employment on a massive scale? Are there any special incentives for labor-heavy investments? Yes, we do support and create opportunities for youngsters looking for jobs. Different industrial policies have been announced for different sectors, all of which will have a focus on job creation too. However, one specific sector we are very keenly focusing on for massive job creation is textiles. Towards this, we will have 10 new integrated textile parks. From early on,



Maharashtra was a leader in textiles, but the mills were more in Mumbai. But as per the new textiles policy, the new integrated textile parks will be in cotton producing areas of the state like Marathwada, Vidarbha etc. This is done for better logistics as well as for helping the agricultural community producing cotton. The first of these parks have come up near Amaravati in Vidarbha. Textile majors like Siyaram and Raymond have already launched their projects there. By focusing on the labour intensive textile sector, we are confident of providing jobs on a massive scale. What about the other side of the coin? Is Maharashtra confident of delivering adequate manpower to industries? We are a state that is proud to have qualified manpower on a massive scale.

In fact, we are the leaders in India on this front, and to tell you frankly, this has been a major reason for companies choosing Maharashtra over other states when it comes to projects that require technically competent manpower. We have more than a thousand engineering colleges, with more than 1 lakh engineers passing out each year. We also have more than 900 Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) from which more than 1 lakh technicians pass out every year. So, we are very confident on this front. Maharashtra has been a leader in attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into India. Do you see the trend improving or remaining stable or going below on increased competition from other states? We are not just leaders in this regard,

MAGNETIC MAHARASHTRA - CONVERGENCE 2018 we account for more than 50% of all FDI inflow that came into India last year. This is not our data, but information published by the Centre. And the trend has been improving recently. Because, during the previous 5 years our share of Indian FDI was, on an average, 30%.


Thanks to having Mumbai, the economic capital of India, Maharaashtra's per capita income is much higher than national average. But when investing companies try to leverage this consumer wealth, they are appalled by the exorbitant costs of setting up shop in Mumbai. What are the government's plans to expand Mumbai or make it more attractive to investors? Is there a plan to increase the FSI? Recently we have launched a new Fintech policy. It will be a game-changer on many fronts. We have also modified and re-launched our new IT & ITES policy. Over 2.5 million jobs have been already created in these sectors. Until now these sectors were mainly setting up shop in Mumbai, Navi Mumbai and Pune. But with the new policies in place, more financial services and IT companies will locate themselves in our Tier II and Tier III cities. We are promoting integrated townships with sustainable walk-to-work culture. FSI increase is given as an incentive to IT industry. The end result of all these policy changes is that new jobs will be created on a massive scale. Until recently, Maharashtra was not aggressive in wooing large new manufacturing companies that were trying to set shop in India. Still, due to it's natural advantages, it continued to be the de facto leader in manufacturing. Now, with programs like Make in India, how is Maharashtra trying to attract the kind of large manufacturing units that it had missed for states like Haryana, Gujarat, & Tamil Nadu?

Rajiv Gandhi Infotech Park, Hinjawadi, Pune

Patni Knowledge Park, Airoli

I think other states would have missed more projects that set shop in Maharashtra, than vice versa. You name any large industrial group, be it Indian or international. They would be here. Tata, Birla, JSW, Posco etc in Steel; SEASONAL MAGAZINE


Microsoft, Google, Apple, Persistent etc in IT; Mercedes Benz, Volkswagen, Skoda, Tata, Mahindra, Bajaj etc in Auto; then Bharat Forge and L&T in engineering and defence; this list can be endless. Some of these companies are basically only in Maharashtra and not anywhere else in India. All this has happened due to the state’s natural and synergistic strengths in various fields. But you are right, now we are actively and aggressively wooing industrial houses than it was done earlier. The state, especially Mumbai & Pune, is already a leader in the MSME sector. Is the government planning an MSME and ancillary units push in other pockets like Nagpur, Aurangabad etc? As I told you, our Cabinet has approved 7 new industrial policies. While these are for different sectors, almost in all of them we have announced many

incentives to MSMEs. We have reserved land for MSMEs. Then there is capital subsidy, interest subsidy, concessional power tariff and concessional stamp duty. We will also support MSMEs to get listed in the SME Platforms of BSE and NSE. This kind of 360 degree support to MSMEs is unprecedented, anywhere in India. In recent years, there have been active efforts by other states, especially Gujarat to wean away a sizeable chunk of the financial services business in Mumbai to newly planned mega cities with attractive real estate prices and tax cuts. Does Maharashtra view this as a threat, and what are your special initiatives to retain your leadership in financial services business? Yes, building the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) at Mumbai was our dream project. But the Central

Government favoured Gujarat. We still know we are the natural leader to host this, as almost all banks and all the big corporations are either headquartered in Mumbai or have large operations here. So what we have decided is we will build the IFSC at BKC Mumbai on our own and openly compete with them, leveraging all of Mumbai’s strengths in the financial services business. With the new fintech policy in place, Maharashtra has become even more attractive for financial services and fintech companies. Despite accounting for around 28% of country's IT exports, Maharashtra's public image in the global IT map lags behind such competitors like Bangalore and Hyderabad. Do you think the IT achievements in Pune need to be marketed much better before a global audience? Yes, some such states were successful in attracting many IT companies. But as you said, we too have a sizeable presence in this segment. Since coming to office three years back, this government has been aware of this perception issue and has worked hard to overcome it and attract more and more IT jobs into the state. Now, the greater flow of both IT and ITES companies are into Maharashtra. Soon, we will be coming out with facts and figures to support this real claim. And there is no doubt that even in IT we will lead from the front. Going into a major investment meet, how do you counter criticism that much of the MoUs won’t be implemented ever? That has been the sorry state of affairs with many states that are making a lot of noise on investment meets. But here too, Maharashtra is a leader by a long margin. You will be surprised to know that our MoU conversion rate is a whopping 74% in recent years. No state can match this. Even from the Make in India meet at Mumbai, we could convert 5 lakh crore worth of projects from the total 8 lakhs we signed. Again no state came any close. I was once surprised to visit the Gujarat Government’s website and see an investment meet MoU –




signed between the Government and it’s own Women & Child Welfare Department to set up Anganawadis. If such tricks are resorted to, we can present the whole Maharashtra Budget as MoUs and no one will beat us. But we sign MoUs with real industrial houses for real projects. If you have watched, you would have observed something about Mumbai. Almost every week, we have a visiting CM or top level delegation from a state, in our Mumbai? Know what they are here for? To woo the industry captains! Because, they are all here already! Will any CM go to Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Bangalore, or Chennai this frequently? Not at all. I will tell you one more incident. Some time back I met a CM from a prominent state, and they were doing well on the investments front. So I asked him what they were doing to attract investors. He kept silent for a while, and then told me, “I often send my officials to Mumbai to study your policy, and based on that we do our own policy and show the investors!” So this kind of a pioneering lead Maharashtra has always had, and the Magnetic Maharashtra Global Investors Summit will once again increase our lead further. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


Mumbai To Get Two Residential Projects Through A Joint Partnership Between Two Real Estate Giants Shapoorji Pallonji Real Estate and Nirmal Ltd have joined hands to develop two residential projects that would be in the tune of around Rs. 3000 crore. The project will be launched in the next 6 months.

ealty firm Shapoorji Pallonji Real Estate has tied up with property developer Nirmal Ltd to build two residential projects in Mumbai that would entail an investment of around Rs3,000 crore, said senior executives of both firms. Under the agreement, Shapoorji would sell, market and look into the overall development of the project while Nirmal would continue to hold the land and be responsible for funding of the project. Dharmesh Jain, chairman and managing director, Nirmal Ltd, said that the projects would be funded through a mix



of internal accruals and debt. “We are in advanced discussion to raise some funds to finance the project. Over the 60-90 days we should able to tie up with institutions,� Jain said. The two projects would spread across a total of 3 million sq ft each at Mulund, comprising around 4,000 units with prices ranging between Rs75 lakh to 1.5 crore. Both the projects would be launched within the next six months, he said. This is the fourth tie-up for Nirmal in the last one year. The Mumbai-based firm has been looking for partnerships to either monetise land parcels it owns in Mulund and Thane, suburbs of

Mumbai, or fast-track some of the developments around the area. Previously, it had entered into deals with Godrej Properties Ltd and L&T Realty. For Shapoorji Pallonji, the development management business comprises around one-fifth of the total portfolio of the company. The rest are either managed and owned by the company or under joint development with a partner firm, said Venkatesh Gopalkrishnan, chief executive officer, Shapoorji Pallonji Real Estate. Under the developer management model, large realty firms step in as development managers for smaller developers and landowners, in return for a share of the revenue, share of profit or a management fee.


Mumbai Receives Rs. 40,000 Crore To Upgrade Transport Infrastructure Mumbai’s transportation woes would soon be alleviated with the Union Budget 2018 earmarking a whopping Rs. 40,000 crore for improving the city transport infrastructure.

eople of Mumbai have something to cheer about with the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley allocating Rs 40,000 crore for enhancing the city transportation infrastructure in the Budget. Jaitley announced that the government will spend around Rs 11,000 crore on upgrading the city's train systems and the Mumbai suburban rail will get 90 additional kilometres of double line. Following the announcement, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, who thanked Modi, Jaitley and Piyush Goyal, tweeted that this would be a big boost to city's infrastructure and the economy and money would be spent on new airports and transportation. Of late, the state government has fasttracked construction of many of the metro and road mega projects, which were in planning for decades but failed to take off due to bureaucratic hurdles, land acquisitions and paucity of funds.

One among the main projects currently on the ground is the 22-km long Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL), connecting Mumbai with Navi Mumbai over the sea. The Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has appointed three contractors to construct all the three packages and they will soon start work on the Rs 17,000 crore project, expected to be ready by 2021. Apart from the Navi Mumbai International airport, another long pending project with priority is the Virar-

The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC), the road construction arm of the state government, is planning to construct a 1.8 km six-lane third bridge at Vashi for Rs 777 crore, besides several other flyovers and bridges to ease traffic.

Alibaug Multi-Modal Corridor. The 128km Virar-Alibaug multimodal corridor Phase-1 is expected to cost anywhere between Rs 10,000-18,000 crore. The Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC), the road construction arm of the state government, is planning to construct a 1.8 km six-lane third bridge at Vashi for Rs 777 crore, besides several other flyovers and bridges to ease traffic. Another pet project of the Chief Minister, who himself monitors infrastructure projects from a 'war room', is the 711 kilometre access controlled Nagpur - Mumbai Super Expressway. Work is progressing on several metro lines as per the schedule and the Andheri (East) to Dahisar (East) Metro-7 and Dahisar to DN Nagar Metro-2A is expected to go on stream within a couple of years. The second line of monorail connecting Wadala to Jacob Circle is also awaiting final clearances to start operations. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


Reliance-Jai Corp-CIDCO led Navi Mumbai SEZ To Be Open From Next Year

Navi Mumbai Special Economic Zone Pvt. Ltd—promoted by Reliance Industries Ltd chairman Mukesh Ambani, Jai Corp. India, SKIL Infrastructure Ltd and City and Industrial Development Corp (CIDCO)—will be developed in phases and be open to industrial units in 2019. he Maharashtra government allowed Navi Mumbai SEZ promoters to convert the SEZ into an integrated industrial area. The SEZ is proposed to be developed over 2,140 hectares in Dronagiri, Ulwe, and Kalamboli nodes in Navi Mumbai. “The intention is to get industries. In another two to three months, we will complete the approval process and documentation. We will then develop the area for all kinds of industries to come and set up shop,” one of the officials cited above said. Following the government’s decision, the SEZ will be able to use up to 15% of the total leased land—1,842 hectares at present—for residential purposes and the remaining 85% for industrial use. CIDCO holds 26% stake in Navi Mumbai SEZ, while the rest is held by Ambani, Jai Corp. promoted by Anand Jain and Nikhil Gandhi’s SKIL Infrastructure. Emails sent to the three offices did not elicit any response till the time of going to press. “Development will start in June 2018 wherein we will put all the infrastructure in place including roads, electricity, and



water connections. We will not be setting up units on our own. We will get customers who will set up their own units, be it hospitals, schools or shops. We will be giving the plots on lease. There is much demand for local industries and exports businesses in the Navi Mumbai region,” the second official cited above added. It was reported that CIDCO and promoters have so far been able to purchase 1,842 hectares which will be leased out now. The project, envisaged over a decade ago, failed to take off due to various reasons, including policy and taxation changes.

The integrated industrial township policy allows promoters of non-functioning SEZs to convert the specially designated areas into industrial townships by allotting up to 40% of the total project area for commercial and residential purposes. However, given that Navi Mumbai SEZ was approved under a different set of conditions, it has been allowed to use only 15% land for residential purposes The policy also provides for the opening up of some land parcels on the SEZ to develop information technology (IT) parks and IT-enabled services.


Affordable Housing Could Soon Become A Reality in Mumbai


he state government is likely to give its nod to the city’s long-pending Draft Development Plan 2014-34 by the end of February, said officials who are part of the process. The plan which will play an important role in deciding the city’s land use and infrastructure development for the next 20 years is likely to get sanctioned along with its draft Development Control Rules. The DP 2034 promises to boost affordable housing, provide more open spaces, focus on pedestrianisation and fulfil a vision of a city that is safer for women. The plan also makes provisions for the construction of a working women’s hostel in all civic wards, in addition to old age homes and day care centres. The city is also expected to see a vertical growth in terms of a floor space index of 4 allowed for commercial use and social amenities. With the accommodation reservation policy, the new plan has sweetened the deal for land owners by allowing them to build more than currently permissible, provided they develop the land and

hand it over for public use, easing the land acquisition process. The BMC’s DP? department has been directed to link the DP and DCR data to the newly launched one geographical information system (GIS), said officials. The system has a digital map of the civic amenities of more than 17 departments, including major ones such as the roads, fire, stormwater drains, building

“We were asked to link DP data to the one GIS. The system is a centralised application for all civic departments. All major and minor approvals, changes or updates can be accessed through it,” said a senior official from the DP department.

proposals and health departments. It is also expected to help expedite building plan approvals under the BMC’s ease of doing business policy. “We were asked to link DP data to the one GIS. The system is a centralised application for all civic departments. All major and minor approvals, changes or updates can be accessed through it,” said a senior official from the DP department. Until the state government sanctions the DP, authorities have to consider the regulations of the DP 1991 or 2034 in case of a clash over regulations for a particular project. The BMC had prepared and published the development plan in February 2015. However, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis sent it back to the drawing table after there were widespread reports that the draft was riddled with errors. Following this, civic chief Ajoy Mehta appointed former bureaucrat Ramnath Jha as officer on special duty to correct the errors and release the revised draft plan. The plan was finally approved by the BMC’s general body in July last year. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


Government Pushes For Logisitics Parks To Aid Multi-Functional Facilities

Devendra Fadnavis’ government has sped into action, reaffirming the promise made by Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, to ease container traffic problems through the setting up of comprehensive logistics parks as part of a policy that will enhance the state’s reputation as a major maritime hub. an effort to boost the already expansive Rs 550billion logistics and warehousing industry, the Maharashtra government has come out with a comprehensive logistics policy for the sector. The plan is to facilitate the setting up of 25 integrated logistics parks and over 100 logistics parks across the state. India’s logistics and warehousing market is pegged at Rs 550 billion with Maharashtra, because of its status as a major manufacturing state, having a sizeable share in the market. Industrial warehouses, which store goods manufactured by companies, are spread across 515 million sqm. The bulk of the market, however, is unregulated with a proliferation of unregulated warehouses across the state. In the new policy cleared by the Cabinet, the state government talks of creating 25


integrated logistics parks, for which the MIDC will be the nodal and planning authority. The policy states that any warehouse spread over an area of five acres and connected by a 15-m road will qualify to be a logistics park. These parks will provide multi-functional facilities for storage, distribution, transportation, ancillary support services and trade facilitation, all under one roof for end to end logistical support. Another 100 logistics parks will also be set up across the state with each park having a facility spread over 20,000 sqft. It speaks about designating cities like Bhiwandi, Panvel, Taloja, Nashik, Aurangabad, Talegaon and Nagpur as logistics zones. Bhiwandi, located about 60km from Mumbai, is being developed into an economic corridor and transport hub. Once fully developed, it is expected to create more than a million jobs. The Maharashtra government has already

spent Rs 985 crore to develop a logistics park and other infrastructure facilities in Bhiwandi. Like Bhiwandi, the Union government is planning to open 35 multimodal logistics parks across the country, keeping in mind the fact that logistics account for nearly 20 per cent of the total product cost in India, while the comparable figure is 8-12 per cent in China and 12 per cent in Europe. Although India is blessed with a coastline of more than 7,500km, the country has not been able to make use of it as far as transport and logistics are concerned. To make use of such abundant coast line and water ways, the development of transport hubs are important. This is especially true in the case of North India, where distance from ports to the hinterland is significantly larger, compared with the south. Therefore, door-to-door transport on a single bill is all the more significant.


Maharashtra’s Tourism Set To Benefit From First-Of-Its-Kind Wine Festival

IN A BID TO PROMOTE WINES MADE IN THE 40-ODD VINEYARDS AND WINERIES IN NASHIK DISTRICT IN NORTH MAHARASHTRA, THE STATE GOVERNMENT HAS ORGANISED ITS FIRST WINE FESTIVAL — ‘INDIA GRAPE HARVEST, WINE FESTIVAL 2018’. THE INNOVATIVE INITIATIVE WILL TAKE PLACE BETWEEN FEBRUARY 9TH AND MARCH 11TH. Aimed at promoting agro-and wine tourism, this festival is an initiative of the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC), a government subsidiary that works for tourism development in the state. The festival will be organised in and around Nashik with the help of various vineyards. It consists of an exhibition of the best wines at various vineyards, social and cultural events and a carnival, said Jaykumar Rawal, state tourism minister. Aashutosh Rathod, joint managing director, MTDC, said the wine festival has been planned to promote tourism in Maharashtra. “We have chosen Nashik as it has become the wine capital of the country. Tourists will be able to taste best variety of wines at the exhibition. In all, 72 types of wines will be made available,” Rathod said.

“We will hold interactive sessions between well-known Indian and foreign wine manufacturing firms… The firms are coming from Stuttgart (Germany), Wakayama (Japan) and some France,” he said.

The festival will be organised in and around Nashik with the help of various vineyards. It consists of an exhibition of the best wines at various vineyards, social and cultural events and a carnival, said Jaykumar Rawal, state tourism minister.

The MTDC has chosen two campsites at Vallonne vineyard and Vinchur wine park where tourists can experience local food with the best variety of wines. Apart from this, various events will be organised at 14 vineyards that includes masterclass cooking by using wine. The festival will be inaugurated at Sahyadri farm, grape processing centre — a co-operative firm run by 6,000 farmers — by Rawal and Girish Mahajan, guardian minister of Nashik. The closing ceremony will be held in Nashik city, which will be a 4-km long carnival walk. The route of the carnival is yet to be finalised, said Jagdish Holkar, chariman, wine tourism committee, which comes under the state tourism department.



Mumbai’s Hancock Bridge To Get A New Lease of Life

A major road project, that has been in the pipeline for the last few months, got an impetus with a slight tweak of plan. A portion of the stretch will also be underground.

The Sewri-Worli road connector plan, which had been put on hold because of repeated delays in starting the Mumbai Trans-Harbour Link (MTHL) project, has been revived with a change in the original plan. As against a completely overhead bridge between Sewri and Worli, the portion across the Elphinstone Road-Parel stretch will be underground. The 2+2 lane connector is estimated to handle around 15% of the MTHL's expected traffic. MMRDA has appointed the contractor for the MTHL and work is expected to begin before the end of the month. The connector, once built, will provide signal-free connectivity between MTHL and the Bandra-Worli Sea Link (BWSL). Metropolitan commissioner UPS Madan said, "We have decided to build the connector with a slight change in design." The overhead portion of the connector would be built at a height of 27m. Madan said, "There will be practical problems in executing the stretch at that height on the railway stretch. Also, it takes a lot of time for a design to be approved by the railways. Hence we have decided to go underground." The underground stretch is likely to be 500 metres long. The connector's high alignment is owing to the presence of flyovers on Dr BR Ambedkar Road and Tulsi Pipe Road. It will originate near the mouth of the MTHL at Sewri, take the Acharya Donde Marg at Parel, before going underground at Parel station, remerging above ground, moving towards Prabhadevi, and ending at Narayan-Hardikar Marg at Worli.

MUMBAI’S ICONIC HANCOCK BRIDGE IS SET TO MAKE A REAPPEARANCE AFTER THE CIVIC STANDING COMMITTEE GAVE THE GREEN SIGNAL TO THE PROJECT’S CONSTRUCTION, TWO YEARS SINCE IT WAS DEMOLISHED. More than two years after it was dismantled, work on construction of a new link in place of the British-era Hancock Bridge between Sandhurst Road and Byculla station will start a fortnight from now. The civic standing committee gave its approval for the bridge's construction at a cost of Rs 51 crore. The new bridge to be constructed is expected to be completed in 19 months. "Once we receive the standing committee's resolution, we will issue a work order. The topographic survey would first be undertaken to understand the area's features followed by geo-tagging. IIT-Bombay will monitor the work," said S O Kori, chief engineer (bridges). While the contract cost is Rs 39.41 crore, the total project amount considering the expected costs could rise upto Rs 51.7 crore, said officials. Unlike the earlier bridge, the BMC plans to increase the new link's height. "We are doing so keeping in mind the requirements suggested by the railways," added Kori. At the civic standing committee meet, BJP corporator Abhijit Samant raised a stink over the contract cost being 5.9% above normal. "When the proposal states that there would be no extra cost apart from what the BMC has estimated then why is the administration paying the contractor 5.9% more than what they have estimated," said Samant. The iconic bridge Hancock Bridge was demolished in January 2016 after which it has been mired in controversy delaying the commissioning of the construction of the new bridge. The tenders for the same were first invited in May 2016, when the BMC awarded contracts for four bridges to two parties.



In A Bid To Improve Infrastructure, CM Fadnavis Stresses On Transport Hub In Pune


Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis directed the state metro rail corporation and the state road transport corporation to plan for execution of the Swargate-Integrated Multi-Modal Transport Hub in Pune.

A presentation of the project was made before Mr Fadnavis in Mumbai. This transport hub is being planned to ease out traffic jams and encourage the use of public transport in Pune. The chief minister has directed the Maharashtra Metro Rail Corporation and Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) to plan for execution of this project, a statement from the chief minister’s office said. The presentation was made by Principal Secretary of Urban Development Department, Nitin Karir, at a meeting held in the state secretariat on the Swargate Integrated Multi-Model Transport Hub. Vice-Chairman of the transport corporation and MD Ranjit Singh Deol, CMD of Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal (PMPML) Tukarm Mundhe, Maha Metro MD Brijesh Dixit, Ramnath Subramanyam, Additional Municipal Commissioner of Pune Shital Teli-Ugale, and Shitesh Agrawal of Sankalp Design were present on the occasion. The chief minister made certain suggestions regarding the Transport Hub plan and directed Maharashtra Metro and MSRTC to work in tandem to complete the project. The proposed Metro rail station, ST bus stand and PMPML bus station are located close-by at Swargate in Pune. The Integrated Multi-Model Transport Hub is being planned here to overcome the traffic jam because of this situation. In the first phase of this two-phased project, Metro station and PMPML bus station will be developed and ST bus stand will be developed in the second phase. The transport hub will include facilities like a bus terminal, underground subway, theatre, building for offices and commercial establishments.

a noble gesture, the state government will bear the burden of a Rs. 12.75 crore subsidy that will come as a relief to lakhs of school-going girls who will benefit from cheaply-available sanitary pads. The Maharashtra government has launched a scheme to make a pack of sanitary pads available to 7 lakh girls studying in government schools for a subsidised price of Rs 5. It intends to increase the percentage of usage of sanitary pads to 75 % from the current 17 % in rural Maharashtra. The state cabinet approved a proposal to launch, Asmita (meaning dignity) — a scheme to make sanitary pads available to girls aged between 11 and 19. It has engaged three small scale manufacturers, to supply the pads using a network of self- help groups (SHGs) run by women in the state. The pack of 8 pads, costing the government Rs 24 (240mm) and Rs 29 (280mm) including profits for the SHGs, will be subsidised to Rs 5 for the girls. The annual burden of the subsidy for the state government is Rs12.75 crore. Besides school girls, about 1.75 crore women in rural parts of the state will also be targeted by the scheme. But they will have to pay the actual cost of the pack. “The packs are still cheaper than their market price. The usage of pads in rural areas is even lesser than the national average of 17% ...”said Aseem Gupta, secretary, rural development department. “The SHGs will get Rs5 per pack to market these packs. The scheme will be launched on World Women’s Day on March 8...” said rural development minister Pankaja Munde.



Navi Mumbai’s International Airport to Ease Burden on Mumbai Airport Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be at the airport site on 18 February to lay the foundation stone of this project that will now cost the state Rs16,000 crore. he Navi Mumbai International Airport (NMIA) is finally getting a move-on. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is all set to lay the foundation stone in the middle of the month and operations are expected to start in 2019. The proposed airport is coming up near Ulwe in Panvel, on the outskirts of Mumbai. The official site is now being called Pushpak, a new node in Navi Mumbai created by CIDCO in 2015. The Navi Mumbai airport will be approximately 8km off the MumbaiPune Expressway; 123km from Pune city; 54km from Colaba, Mumbai and 43km from Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport. Much—not all—of the land for the airport has been acquired. The airport is being developed on a public-private parternship basis between government

agency CIDCO and GVK-Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL). MIAL will hold 74% stake in the project; the rest is with CIDCO. GVK MIAL itself is a consortium led by GVK with Airports Authority of India as the minority stakeholder. Regarding the date of its operation, there are various dates being thrown around. CIDCO, the government body overseeing the project, says all construction will be over by end of 2019. The airport operator MIAL, says operations will begin by the end of 2021. Minister of state for civil aviation, Jayant Sinha said in February 2018 that the airport will take four-five years to be operational—effectively slating it for 2022-2023 and Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation, an aviation think-tank, says the Navi Mumbai airport will be ready only by 2024. When built, the airport will definitely

The Navi Mumbai airport will be approximately 8km off the Mumbai-Pune Expressway; 123km from Pune city; 54km from Colaba, Mumbai and 43km from Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport. ease the burden of air traffic for the Mumbai airport which recently made the record for handling the highest number of flights in a day. The airport is slated to have two parallel runways that could handle up to 80 flights every hour, potentially adding another 2,000 flights to Mumbai daily. Wide-bodied jets such as the A380 will also take off and land here. To facilitate airport connectivity, major roads around the site are being enhanced. This includes the Aamra Marg which will be widened to 8 lanes including service lanes on either side and NH 4B, to be widened similarly by the Mumbai JNPT Port Road Company Ltd. Other proposed projects are a Vasai to Alibaug Multi Modal Corridor to connect to NMIA as well as the Mumbai Trans-Harbour Link (MTHL) from Sewri to Nhava. This will help connect the airport to the prime business hot spots of the South, Central and Western areas of Mumbai. CIDCO will be making provisions for a coastal road that will connect the MTHL with the airport. CIDCO is also planning Navi Mumbai’s first metro system with a connection to NMIA on the Belapur-KhargharPendhar-Taloja-Khandeshwar route.




First GPS-Enabled Tolling Booth Will Be Along Delhi-Mumbai Corridor The road transport and highways ministry is set to launch the pilot for a global positioning system (GPS)-based tolling project on the Delhi-Mumbai corridor, a move seen as a game changer for road passengers as well as infrastructure companies.

The GPS-based tolling system will be fully automatic and the vehicles under trial will be fitted with a FASTag, which would enable automatic deduction of toll charges after which the toll gates will open automatically, a senior government official explained, on condition of anonymity.

nder the GPS-based tolling system, India’s first, commuters will pay only for the distance they travel on a toll road as against the current practice of paying a fixed toll irrespective of whether they use all or a part of a road. The project, to be implemented by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), will be the pilot for the “pay as you travel” scheme announced in the 2018-19 budget. The GPS-based tolling system will be fully automatic and the vehicles under trial will be fitted with a FASTag, which would enable automatic deduction of toll charges after which the toll gates will open automatically, a senior government official explained, on condition of anonymity. The amount will be deducted from the vehicle holder’s account and credited to the concessionaire’s within a day. The pilot study will also provide an idea of the time required for processing

transactions and the kind of disputes that could arise from them. The last date for submission of bids for the pilot study is 26 February. There have been reports on the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government’s plans to work on such a policy in last year. The pilot project was earlier to be implemented on the Eastern Peripheral Expressway but due to a delay in its completion, the pilot stretch was changed. Road transport and highways minister Nitin Gadkari had hinted during the India Integrated Transport and Logistics Summit in last year that his ministry and the NHAI were working on a “pay per km” project. The move comes at a time when toll rates across the country have been rising. India has 362 toll plazas under the NHAI, generating revenue of more than Rs18,000 crore.

Vikash Sharda, executive director at advisory firm PwC, said e-tolling in India has increased rapidly from about 4% in 2016 to about 20-22% by December 2017. GPS-based e-tolling is a part of the National Electronic Toll Collection programme of the government of India and the success of this technology can transform the toll collection system, Sharda said. This would not only help in capturing actual distances travelled by a vehicle and charging user based on travel distance but may also eliminate the need to construct toll plazas in future, he added. However, a technology expert who did not wish to be named said the move will face several hurdles such as net connectivity, making all vehicles GPS-enabled, etc. GPSenabled tolling requires an ecosystem which would need investments and change in consumer behaviour, he added. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


Maharashtra Government’s FinTech Policy Is An All-Round Game-Changer The Maharashtra government announced its financial technology (fintech) policy under which it aims to facilitate setting up of 300 fintech start-ups in the State. Maharashtra is the first State to announce such a policy. Mumbai is ideally suited to be a fintech hub as it is the country’s financial capital,” said SVR Srinivas, principal secretary of the state information technology department.

o make Mumbai and its adjoining areas as “fintech (the financial technology) capital of the world”, the cabinet cleared a policy to help start-ups in the sector — a first in the country. Fintech refers to use of technology in financial and banking services?(eg. e-wallets, retail banking etc). The policy was cleared at the State Cabinet meeting. The Fadnavis government has framed the policy keeping in mind the Global Fintech Hub planned in Mumbai. A press statement issued by the Chief Minister’s Office said the policy aims to nurture 300 fintech start-ups in the next three years. For the start-ups, ?200 crore venture funds would be facilitated by the State government. Another ?250crore corpus would be raised by the State government for supporting the start-ups. The companies would be provided with co-working space. The state government intends that the state should emerge as the one of the top five fintech hubs in the world in the next five years. “We want to make the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR)?the fintech hub of India. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


The state government is working on setting up International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) and confident that it will emerge as top player in the fintech sector. According to the policy, the state government plans to keep a corpus of Rs250 crore to support such start-ups. The proposed Global Fintech Hub will get additional FSI. Out of the total area at the hub, 85 per cent will be reserved for fintech companies. The State government will be also be providing another 10,000 sq ft of space at a central location in Mumbai for fintech companies, banks and educational institutions, the statement said. The fintech start-ups, which will qualify for State government support must have ?25-crore annual turnover. These companies will also have access to subsided internet hosting services. The expenses on electricity, internet and GST will be reimbursed to the companies, the statement said. A committee of 15 experts will guide the State government on the policy, the statement added. With an eye to promote cashless economy, reduce carbon footprints, boost indigenous production of defence equipment and create jobs in small and medium units, the timing of the raft of incentives by the Maharashtra cabinet could not have been any better than this.

Apart from the fintech policy, the state government cleared policies for defence and aerospace, electric vehicles, logistics, textile, garments, gems and jewellery, and coir (coconut fibre) etc. The policies, officials said, were unveiled strategically before the ‘Magnetic Maharashtra’ conclave. The three-day global investors’ summit aims to rake up investments of around Rs10 lakh crore. The cabinet has lined up incentives for the electric vehicle industry. The state also unveiled a defence and aerospace policy aiming to create 1 lakh jobs and attract $2 billion in investments. The government also plans to set up units in Pune, Nashik, Ahmednagar, Aurangabad and Nagpur. It will give a mega project status to defence and aerospace companies with a minimum fixed capital investment of Rs250 crore and employing 500 people in industrial areas in the category A and B. For other industrial areas, it will give a mega project status to companies with a minimum fixed capital expenditure of Rs100 crore and employing 250 people To ensure that the state’s micro, small and medium enterprises in the defence and aerospace sector do not have a crunch of capital and working capital, the state will create a corpus of Rs1,000 crore. The Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) will manage the fund on behalf of the state government. “The basic objective is to reduce India’s dependence on imports, and Maharashtra is well placed to capitalise on that. The five hubs that we have selected are well-equipped to take up mega projects from the sector,” said Sunil Porwal, principal secretary of the industries department. Porwal added that in companies in each of the hubs will be provided land at a cheaper rate. The state cabinet also extended the Maharashtra Industrial Policy of 2013 for another six months, while it prepares a new one. The state cabinet cleared an industrial policy to facilitate allotment of specially designed industrial complexes (flatted galas) for manufacturers of readymade garments, gems and jewellery and miscellaneous engineering goods.


Maharashtra Government Hopes To Land A Jackpot Through Online Lottery

After experiencing quite a scare due to the GST implementation, Maharashtra witnessed its lowest spending in the last three fiscal years in 2017-18. Now, the government has sniffed an opportunity to boost revenue through the lucrative online lottery business. The Maharashtra government which barely earns around Rs.132 crore from lottery as revenue has now decided to have its own online lottery to enhance its revenue. The state's lottery commissioner Amit Saini said, "The state government has given in principle approval, we are right now in process of preparing detailed project report (DPR) and plan to start state government's online lottery within four to five months." Maharashtra government in financial year 2016-17, earned only around Rs.132 crore from tax on lottery and out of which Rs.125 crore came from tax on online lotteries of other states, which means state government earned income of mere Rs.7 crore from lottery whereas states like Kerala earn around Rs.1300 crore annually from lottery." The Maharashtra government whose revenues are under serious stress due to

GST, slump in real estate sector and also due to schemes like Rs.25,000 crore loan waiver are trying to exploit various ways to increase its revenue and online lottery is part of this strategy. Out of the 29 states of the Union, 16 states have banned lotteries. The states that still operate lotteries are Maharashtra, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, Goa, Punjab, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Manipur, Sikkim, Nagaland and Mizoram. The average daily business of lottery in Mumbai after implementation of GST is around Rs.15 crore and there are around 4,000 stalls which sell lottery in the city. If Maharashtra government comes out with its own lottery its lottery will be in advantageous position as it is state's own lottery it will attract only 12% GST, where as other states lottery attract 28% GST. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


Maldives Crisis: Will India Test China's Patience? The crisis in Maldives can be best described as a power struggle between two contending factions, one belonging to the current President of the Maldives, Abdulla Yameen and the other his political opponents who have been jailed by the regime. On February 1, the Supreme Court of the Maldives issued an order ordering the release of former political prisoners. When the police chief indicated he would comply with the court order, he was fired from his post. Moreover, the Supreme Court was forcibly entered and the Chief Justice and other judges were arrested. Yameen imposed a state of emergency while the court order stands cancelled. hat seems to be on the face of it an undesirable situation to be settled within the domestic jurisdiction by the various stakeholders has now garnered international attention over the scope for foreign intervention. The two countries that have the most to benefit (and perhaps face losses) from involving are India and China. While China has remained ambivalent on its next steps, although any action seems contingent on India’s strategy, the latter is still placing all options on the table for consideration. As recent history would point to, India has come to the aid of the island nation previously under Rajiv Gandhi’s government, who ensured that a coup attempt was foiled. At that time, China had been a silent spectator to the events unfolding in the region and was generally coy SEASONAL MAGAZINE


about Cold War compulsions. However, China is no longer watching from the side-lines as it seeks to gain supremacy in the region at the expense of India. Further, India hopes to maintain its regional stability but is conscious of the strategic repercussions it could have if it decides to interfere in the internal affairs of Maldives. China views the Maldives as key to its Maritime Silk Road project in the Indian Ocean as it has already acquired Hambantota port in Sri Lanka and Djibouti in the Horn of Africa. To this effect, the ruling Communist Party of China has come out in support of Yameen who had recently signed the controversial Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China. The official Chinese line maintains that political struggles are supposed to be internal affairs and that New Delhi has no justification to inter-

vene in Male's affairs. The precepts of international law would agree with China’s position as Article 2 (4) of the Charter prohibits the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state by any member of the UN, and Article 2 (7) restricts the UN from intervening in matters within the domestic jurisdiction of state, unless authorised under Chapter VII of the UN Charter. As both the conditions aren’t met, India will have to split hairs to justify any form of military or diplomatic intervention. The tricky issue in the situation is the absence of ‘physical human rights violations’ committed by the regime whereas the doctrine of ‘Responsibility to Protect’ entails that intervention can be justified only the grounds of gross human rights abuses. The fundamental responsibility is placed on the state itself to fulfil its obligations to its people, including the protection and respect of human rights. However, going beyond the stated principles and legality surrounding intervention, India lacks the necessary mechanism and regional backing to carry out a successful intervention. Firstly, there is always the potentiality of the issue escalating out of control if military means are resorted to and risks antagonizing the neighbouring countries over India’s military adventurism. Secondly, apart from a handful of voices requesting for India’s involvement including from former president of Maldives Mohamed Nasheed whose tweet ignited

the debate, there aren’t many local stakeholders and possible alternatives that India can tap to have any chance of effecting any concrete solution. Regime change is a complex process that requires mass protest movements as much as ‘boots on the ground’. A case in point would be NATO’s intervention in Libya, which although proved to be disastrous had groundswell of support from the forces opposed to Gaddafi. Similarly, although American invasion of Iraq received its fair criticism, the deciding factor apart from strategic interests in the region was the help sought by the Kurds who were being butchered by Saddam’s regime. Therefore, India can influence the internal politics of Maldives only when it gains the active support of internal stakeholders. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has ex-

pressed concern about the crisis in the Maldives, most recently on a phone call with US President Donald Trump, but the matter at least for India cannot just rest on expressions of concern. Maldives is firmly in India’s regional sphere and New Delhi also has a number of commercial interests there, all of which are in danger as a result of the crisis. The island nation is also one of


many countries where Indian and Chinese influence directly competes. And there is history too: India carried out a military intervention in the country three decades ago when it was roiled by a similar political crisis. As C Raja Mohan, an expert on South Asian geo-politics, states “Delhi surely knows one thing from its past interventions. The task of fixing other people’s problems is never easy. And not all consequences of intervention can really be predicted or managed. Maldives might be tiny state with less than half a million people. With a deeply fractured political elite that has become acutely conscious of its strategic location, it will take a lot of Indian energy to repair the state of affairs in Maldives. But then that is the burden of all major powers, especially China in their own regions.”





Auto Expo 2018 has witnessed the showcase of many new concepts and SUVs and while the whole show focussed more on SUVs and electric mobility, there were a lot of sedan too that made its India debut. Likes of Honda Cars showcased its new generation Honda Amaze and the 10th generation global Honda Civic sedan that will be launched in India in coming months. On the luxury front, both German automakers Mercedes-Benz India and BMW India showcased its high-end sedans and will soon be launching them. Mercedes-Benz EClass All-Terrain was showcased in India for the first time and MercedesMaybach S650 was launched at Auto Expo 2018. BMW 6 Series GT was the big showcase at the BMW pavilion and launched the high-performance BMW M5 sporty sedan in India. Here are the top sedans showcased at Auto Expo 2018.

All-new Honda Civic: The big Honda unveil at the Auto Expo 2018 is the new Honda Civic. Honda has confirmed that it will launch the sporty Civic in less than a year. 2018 Honda Civic will get the 1.8L VTEC engine and a new diesel engine. The most anticipated and the star attracter at the Auto Expo 2018 is the India bound Honda Civic which is now confirmed for India launch. Honda Civic has been a popular model for Honda Cars India and has its large fan following in India thanks to its sporty low-slung design which has been carried over on the new Honda Civic as well. Honda Civic India launch has been confirmed during the upcoming FY 2018-19 and the car will be locally SEASONAL MAGAZINE


assembled at Honda’s plant in Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh. Expect the price to be on the higher side close to Rs 18 lakh and will be positioned between Honda City and Honda Accord Hybrid in India. India bound Honda Civic will be powered by a 1.8L petrol engine and also expect a diesel engine on the Civic in India for the first time. The engine block on the Honda Civic will be the same as the one we will see on the 2018 Honda CR-V SUV.

Toyota Yaris: Big debut coming in from another Japanese automaker, Toyota was its big rival to Honda City named - Toyota Yaris. The Toyota Yaris sedan will take on the likes of Honda City, Maruti Suzuki Ciaz and Hyundai Verna and is scheduled for its market debut by June 2018. Speculated to be named as Toyota Vios, the Toyota Yaris will sit between Toyota Etios and a Toyota Corolla Altis sedan and will take Toyota’s India sedan portfolio count to 4 including the Toyota Camry Hybrid. Toyota Yaris will be manufactured at Toyota Kirloskar plant in Karnataka. Expect many segment first features on the Yaris and might also get a hybrid powertrain at a later stage. Toyota Yaris in India will be powered by a 1.5L petrol engine with a maximum power output of 107 hp. The engine will be mated to a 6-Speed Manual Transmission and will also get an optional CVT gearbox. Expect Toyota Yaris price in India to range from Rs 8.713 lakh (Ex-Showroom).

New 2018 Honda Amaze: In the compact space, the only new

sedan to debut is. the all-new Honda Amaze that was revealed to the public for the first time at Auto Expo 2018 along-side new Honda Civic and 2018 Honda CR-V. Honda Amaze was certainly a crowd attracter at the auto show and is expected to debut in the Indian market by April 2018. All new Honda Amaze is built on an all-new platform and gets many segment first features. The new Honda Amaze 2018 now gets a bold and aggressive design and also an all-new interior design. Honda Amaze is based on Honda Brio platform and continues to be sub-4meter in length. With the launch on 2018 Honda Amaze, the company will take on the battle in sub-compact sedan space against Maruti Suzuki Dzire, Hyundai Xcent, Tata Tigor and Volkswagen Ameo and will be available in both petal and diesel engine options.

Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain: German automaker and India’s leading luxury carmaker Mercedes-Benz India has unwrapped its Mercedes-Benz EClass All-Terrain sedan in India for the first time and has confirmed that it will be launched in India soon. Currently, the company sells its Mercedes-Benz EClass Long Wheel Base in India and this new avatar of E-Class is all set for India launch and will be assembled inbuilt in India. Mercedes-Benz India E-Class AllTerrain sedan features 4MATIC allwheel drive system as a standard feature and also gets higher ground clearance than the standard version of MercedesBenz E-Class. The sedan uses Air Body Control multi-chamber air suspension for an improved performance.

Mercedes-Benz E-Class All-Terrain also gets an all-new interior finished in light carbon-grain and will be powered by a diesel engine shedding a power of 194hp mated to a 9G-tronic transmission. Expect the price of the car to be upwards of Rs 60 lakh (ExShowroom).

BMW 6 Series GT: BMW India along with its brand ambassador Sachin Tendulkar launched the all-new BMW 6 Series GT at the Auto Expo 2018 and is priced at Rs 58.9 lakh (Ex-Showroom) for the petrol version. The company has confirmed the diesel version of BMW 6 Series GT will be introduced in India later and the sedan will be locally assembled at BMW India plant in Chennai. BMW 6 Series GT is BMW’s answer to Mercedes-Benz E-Class Long Wheel Base and replaces the BMW 5 Series GT globally. It is

powered by the same engine as the BMW 5 Series, It gets a 2L turbocharged petrol engine that delivers 258hp. BMW 6 Series GT also features top technology including 6th generation BMW iDrive system infotainment system with navigation, gesture control, and headsup display.

Hyundai Ioniq: Hyundai’s global electric sedan Hyundai Ioniq was showcased in India

for the first time. While rumors revolve around this electric car coming to India, at the Auto Expo 2018 it was well received by the visitors and certainly got a lot of traction. Globally, Hyundai Ioniq is available in electric, hybrid and plugin-hybrid options but the Hyundai Motor India showcased the all-electric version of Hyundai Ioniq in India. With electric mobility taking the center stage in India expect Hyundai to launched electric cars soon and its global expertise with Ioniq will definitely help the brand to build mass segment electric cars in India. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


EXERCISE IS BENEFICIAL, EVEN WHEN YOU REMAIN OVERWEIGHT According to a latest study, physical activity may be equally and perhaps even more important than how much the person actually weighs. ou could be fit and healthy even if you are severely overweight. Surprised? Don't be. According to a latest study, physical activity may be equally and perhaps even more important than how much the person actually weighs. The study published in the journal BMC Obesity was led by Jennifer Kuk, associate professor in York University's School of Kinesiology and Health Science, and collaborator Dr. Sean Wharton, MD, medical director of the Wharton Medical Clinic and adjunct professor at York University. The findings revealed that individuals with severe obesity may not lose hope as a fit lifestyle can help them have a similar health profile to those who weigh significantly less than them. The study aimed to look at the benefits of cardio-respiratory fitness on cardiovascular health in people with mild to severe obesity and reinforce the advantage of fitness and exercise. The results came as a pleasant surprise, suggesting that those with even severe obesity, or a BMI greater than 40, can be fit and healthy. Obesity can manifest in worse health conditions when the person is unfit, leads a sedantry life and does nothing to manage his condition, said the researchers. The risk of cardiovascular diseases increases significantly when SEASONAL MAGAZINE


the BMI touches or goes beyond 40. According to researchers, the study yet again reinforces the importance of fitness. About 150 minutes of exercise per week, as per physical activity guidelines, generally leads to less than half pound of weight loss. The researchers added that it can also do wonders for overall heath for those with severe obesity. For the study, the data was gathered from 853 Canadian patients attending Wharton Medical weight management clinics in Southern Ontario. The participants were made to complete a clinical exam which included fasting blood measures and a maximal treadmill stress test. The study showed that the amount of fitness necessary to achieve health benefits was far less than one would imagine. 41% of participants with mild obesity had high fitness levels, while 25 per cent and 11 per cent of the participants with moderate and severe obesity, respectively, had high fitness. The findings also revealed that individuals with severe obesity were more likely to have high blood pressure, glucose, and triglycerides if they were in the lowest 20 per cent of fitness levels, but were not more likely to have these issues if they were in the 80 per cent group with moderate to high level of

fitness. Obesity may have become a common health problem in the current scenario; there are ways through which you can cut down on that extra fat. Apart from 30 minutes of regular exercising, you should include these eating habits in your daily diet. 1. Eat small and frequent meals at regular intervals. However, make sure that your quantity is limited every time you eat. It is a good idea to aim for three meals and two small snacks in a day. This will help prevent overeating.

2. Cut down on condiments like an extra layer of cheese, mayonnaise or some other sauce that adds to unnecessary calories. Cutting these out may actually help save on to the extra calories in the long run. 3. Drink enough water in order to stay hydrated. In fact, drink a glass of water before every meal in order to suppress hunger and make you feel satiated. You will end up eating lesser; as a result you will ingest lesser calories. 4. Eat slow. You don't have to rush

during your meals. Chew your food many times so it becomes easier for the stomach to digest easily. Slow eating also helps prevent overeating. 5. Add more fruits and vegetables in your diet. They come packed with a lot of nutrients and fewer calories while helping you stay full for longer and avoid binge eating. These simple tips will not only help cut down on unnecessary fat that may hinder your health, but also help you keep fit and active.



THE STRANGE CASE OF PALESTINIAN TEENAGER AHED TAMIMI Judge bans media from Israeli military court as trial of teenager filmed slapping and kicking soldiers starts.

A teenage Palestinian protester filmed slapping and kicking two soldiers outside her home has appeared before an Israeli military court to face various charges including assaulting security forces, incitement and throwing stones. Ahed Tamimi, who turned 17 in jail last month, arrived on Tuesday morning for the first day of what could be a months-long trial, in what has become a symbolic case in the battle for international public opinion. The judge ordered a closed-door hearing and ejected a large group of journalists who had gathered at the Ofer military base, despite a request by Tamimi’s lawyer for the media to be able to observe proceedings. Tamimi’s supporters say the incident in December occurred soon after she discovered Israeli troops had seriously SEASONAL MAGAZINE


wounded her 15-year-old cousin, who was shot in the head with a rubber bullet during a stone-throwing clash. Arrested in the middle of the night and since denied bail, Tamimi could face years in prison for what prosecutors argue was a criminal offence. She faces 12 charges, some of which date back to 2016. Tamimi’s father, Bassem, said on Tuesday that he arrived at trial “with no good expectations, because this a military court, and it’s part of the Israeli military occupation”. Some of Israel’s critics have said the case epitomises its brutal approach half a century after its forces captured the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem. Tamimi comes from the village of Nabi Saleh, where regular protests from its several hundred residents have often

ended with stone throwing. Since her early years, she has become an international poster girl for the antioccupation movement. Rights groups have called for her immediate release. “As an unarmed girl, Ahed posed no threat during the altercation with the two Israeli soldiers who were heavily armed and wearing protective clothing,” said Magdalena Mughrabi, Amnesty International’s deputy

director for the Middle East and Africa.


“Yet again the Israeli authorities have responded to acts of defiance by a Palestinian child with measures that are entirely disproportionate to the incident in question.”

The footage of Tamimi led to the teenager being hailed as a hero by some Palestinians, who saw her as standing up to Israel’s occupation of the West Bank.

Hysteria over how the world perceives Tamimi, who comes from a family with a long history of both peaceful and violent resistance against the occupation, has spread across both

One senior Israeli official recently revealed he had asked a parliamentary committee to investigate whether the blond, blue-eyed Tamimi family were “real” Palestinians.

Some Israeli politicians have applauded the restraint of the two soldiers while others have demanded a heavy-handed punishment for what they see as a brazen attack. “She is not a little girl, she is a terrorist,” said the culture minister, Miri Regev, before the trial. “It’s about time they will understand that people like her have to be in jail and not be allowed to incite to racism and subversion against the state of Israel.”






Private companies dominate India Inc., private hospitals lead better healthcare delivery, private banks are better managed than their public peers, but when it comes to higher education, can private universities, or at least some of them, eventually overtake India’s public universities in stature?




rivate Universities in India began competing with its eminent public peers, from a grossly disadvantaged position. With higher fees and lower entry standards, there was only one thing batting for private universities – the grossly inadequate number of seats available in India’s public universities against a surging population and the resultant rising Gross Enrolment Ratio



(GER). But sooner than anticipated, it became clear that the country’s new job growth was not keeping up with the number of graduates joining the jobseekers’ pool every year. Take the most relevant example, which is engineering graduation. According to AICTE figures itself, of the over 7,50,000 engineers India produces every year from 3,000 or more registered institutes,

more than half do not find employment. Only 3,34,000 engineering graduates got jobs in 2015-16 out of about 7,58,000. Staring at such undeniable statistics, the best private universities are trying to differentiate themselves by focusing on employability. One of the key fronts that they are battling this out is by focusing on liberal arts education, like the best

universities in the world, especially in the West. The liberal arts approach is a globally favoured interdisciplinary model, whereby engineering, management, medical, or law students can also take subjects from social sciences so that their knowledge is more relevant to the society around them, and as such their employability increases.





This works out, as more and more companies are recruiting graduates not based on their current knowledge level but on how strong they are in three areas - reasoning, mathematical skills and writing skills. In fact, apart from poor employability, lack of a liberal arts approach has been found to be the prime reason why Indian Universities – both public and private - fare very poorly in global academic rankings of repute. In 2015 itself, India

had decided to invest more in research universities, liberal arts and social sciences to improve the country's position in global ranking of universities. Now, Central Government has come up with various initiatives to foster excellence in select Indian universities and their faculty and students. Prime among them is the proposal to select 20 ‘Institutes of Eminence’, which will include 10 public universities and 10 private universities for receiving a whopping subsidy of Rs. 1000 crore each to build upon their eminence to reach a global stature. Around 100 institutions have already applied to be selected as an Institute of Eminence, but independent observers have already called out about the pitfalls in this

approach. As eminent historian Ramachandra Guha points out, the most important question is who selects the 20 institutions. Guha feels that the ‘Expert Committee’ promised by the Government should ideally have renowned public university founders, scientists and scholars like K Vijay Raghavan, Sriram Ramaswamy, Sanghamitra Bandyopadhyaya, Niraja Gopal Jayal, Supriya Chaudhuri and NR Madhava Menon. But news reports suggest that Government is more keen for having a more flamboyant committee with the likes of Google CEO Sundar Pichai, Microsoft CEO Satya



Nadella and Pepsico CEO Indra Nooyi. While these three and such high-flying Indians of global stature are certainly knowledgeable, a committee with them and a bunch of regular bureaucrats would ultimately result in the bureaucrats calling the shots while these busy global CEOs remain as just attractive names in the committee. At the same time, some of the government moves to inject puranas, vedas and yoga into engineering curriculum has met with stiff resistance from noted academicians, and has given rise to doubts whether the selection of such a committee would favour those institutions aligned with the rightist philosophies of the ruling party.



Nevertheless, the move will give a shot in the arm for the ten selected private institutions as it is the first time that they would be getting such a massive direct subsidy from the nation. The Government has also launched four other schemes viz. Teacher Associateship for Research Excellence (TARE), Overseas Visiting Doctoral Fellowship, Distinguished Investigator Award (DIA) and Augmenting Writing Skills for Articulating Research (AWSAR), all of which can be utilized for private institutions to level the playing ground further. Seasonal Magazine profiles select private universities that are ensuring a better future for their students be it corporate or academic placements.




Modelled on the Wor The best universities across the world including Harvard are not building new brick-and-mortar infrastructure, but tech-enabled facilities that take classroom learning to the next level. This approach has also been implemented by some Indian institutions like IIM Ahmedabad. Alliance has followed suit, and has recently upgraded it’s tech-enabled classrooms to be at par with such best institutions in USA and India. Also, despite having one of the largest university libraries in this part of the world, Alliance is currently building one of the largest digital libraries in India that will give next-generation access to journals, MOOC etc. Right from its inception ten years back as a Business School, Alliance University had the requirements of the global job market in its radar. Under Dr. Angur’s leadership, Alliance has successfully attracted renowned faculty trained in US & Europe, and also has an Advisory Council comprised of global heavyweights in academics and industry from North America, EU, Singapore etc. It has



rld’s Best also made most of its academic programs for international requirements, and this is paying rich dividends now. For a few years now, international recruiters have been placing Alliance students in global markets. Alliance University is the brainchild of Dr. Madhukar G Angur, a renowned scholar of engineering and business strategy in USA, India, and several other countries, and serves as its Founder Chancellor. Alliance University is expected to be a leading contender for some of the new government initiatives like is also expected to be a leading contender for some of the new government initiatives like ‘Institutes of Eminence’, Teacher Associateship for Research Excellence (TARE), Overseas Visiting Doctoral Fellowship, Distinguished Investigator Award (DIA) and Augmenting Writing Skills for Articulating Research (AWSAR) program. Teacher Associateship for Research Excellence (TARE), Overseas Visiting Doctoral Fellowship, Distinguished Investigator Award (DIA) and Augmenting Writing Skills for Articulating Research (AWSAR) program.



Dr. Madhukar G Angur has studied and taught at some of the best universities in the developed world, and is unique in that he has visited around 200 of the best universities across the globe as part of his professional career as well as personal passion in discovering the best educational practices. Moreover, Dr. Angur is not only an ace academician but has been a successful entrepreneur in both USA and India, with one of the companies he founded being part of a publicly listed corporation. When it was created almost 10 years back, the infrastructure of Alliance University was one of the best in India. But so would feel the infrastructure of any new private university in the country. The beauty of Alliance Infrastructure is that even after a decade, it still comes across as one of the finest in India. Such has been the foresight and detailed planning that have gone into creating this unique private university in Bangalore. Most of its peers are not as equipped as Alliance on this front because the brains behind this university have

unparalleled exposure in several worldclass universities of United States in different capacities. Alliance University is based at Bangalore which has successively been India’s Information Technology capital, Outsourcing capital, Biotechnology capital, E-Commerce capital, and Startup capital, due to a definitive reason. Much before Bangalore became all of these, it was the professional higher education capital of the country. The city boasts of the largest number of PhD holders in the country. Alliance University being founded by a noted entrepreneur is using this location advantage to a

strategic advantage. Alliance students are also placed by some of the best ecom/startup companies, and the university has an incubation centre that also caters to public talent. In many universities across India, curriculum is all about academic rigor alone. While earlier this approach of focusing on the fundamentals, core, & electives, was enough to get a job, today’s demanding careers call for much more. Alliance University had already rose to this emerging challenge years back, and had innovated on cocurricular and extra-curricular activities in a high-impact way. The university has been overflowing with cocurricular events like seminars and conferences, which are conducted in close interaction with industries, and this has ensured that Alliance looks after not only academic rigor but industrial relevance of its graduates. Over the first 10 years of its existence, Alliance University’s focus was on the professional success of its students. But success on this front has equipped the university to focus on more holistic development of its students. It status as a primarily professional university has been a challenge in this regard. But under Dr. Angur’s

Dr. Madhukar G Angur



guidance, Alliance is now ensuring more holistic development by including more humanities courses into its professional programs, whether it is engineering, business, law, or other programs. This is ensuring that Alliance graduates are not only benefitting their companies, but their communities due to ethical behavior. If you have high scores in your plustwo, graduation, or post-graduation, Alliance is calling you. Top scorers get even full tuition fee waivers, while high scorers get partial waivers and deferred fee payments. What is more, Alliance is also offering scholarships to top national-level performers in nonacademic fields like sports, arts etc, which is something most private universities are not offering in the country. Alliance draws its scholarship programs from best international practices in the West, where fine students flock to the best institutions based on the superior financial aid provided.

fact that education should be worldclass. As a standalone business school, that Alliance was at one point, it looked at not only aspirational institutions in the country like the IIMs but also at some of the very leading universities in the world like Harvard, Stanford, North Western University etc. The frame of reference was that these were truly international in content as well as facilities, and Alliance looked at them to understand what business education of the future looks like. Therefore, internationalization came as a result of this basic philosophy with which the

university was founded. This philosophy was that professional education ought to prepare the graduates for the global market. Dr. Angur has visited close to 200 universities, which has given him much insight into globalized higher education. He have also been faculty, guest and visiting professor at many of these places. He believes Alliance students need to have that kind of mind-set and frame of reference. Towards this, he ensured that Alliance faculty needs to come from different parts of the world. Primarily, their

Alliance University was founded on the



faculty have been educated in Europe and USA. Alliance also has an international advisory board that is truly global in its outlook. The university has got members from major universities in Singapore, Europe and USA. Despite the emerging protectionist trends the world over, particularly in the United States and Europe, Dr. Angur is a firm believer in the demographic dividends that India provides, be it in the form of a younger population, more educated youth skilled in specific areas and the reality of ageing economies of the West. The problem of ageing population can only be dealt with by embracing the skill sets brought in by the younger population. The average age of the U.S citizen is in the 40s, whereas in India it is in the 20s. There is going to be a gap of skill sets in most parts of the developed world. Despite protectionism being practised, there is always the reality of the skill gap which nations always need to fill. If a US citizen has skills equivalent to what an Indian can offer, naturally the US would prefer the former. Therefore, Indian managers and professionals need to have the necessary skill set in the event of any existing skill gap, feels Dr. Angur. Number of such hiring might go down, but the quality of hiring will go up. He makes Alliance students to realize that they have to match in global competitiveness. When it comes to educational infrastructure, Dr. Angur is inspired from world-class institutions like Harvard and IIM-Ahmedabad. Harvard University, which is almost 400 years old, and doesn’t need to boast about its infrastructure. What they have basically done in the newer side of Harvard, and similarly in IIM-Ahmedabad, is that they have made revolutionary technological changes in their classrooms. One is the beautiful buildings that we see from the outside, the other part is



the adaptability to technology within the classroom. Dr. Angur has done this at Alliance University, for example, in their newer constructions in the campus, which is more adaptable to technology-enabled classrooms. Alliance is now planning an additional library with exclusive digital interface. The university already has a very large, centralized library. Now they are aiming for the ability to have a seamless integration with technology and the know-how to connect with the rest of the world using this technology. Costeffectiveness is also a huge factor driving this change. It is also important to keep in mind infrastructure in the context of quality campus life for students. Residential and extracurricular facilities also play a role in making them believe they are part of a system that enhances their quality of all-round learning. This is easily noticeable in Harvard and Stanford where there is a sense of university community and Dr. Angur wishes to make their students get that community feeling of being in a ‘home away from home’. The pedagogy at Alliance is much more than curriculum. They have curricular, co-curricular and extra-curricular activities which in totality will provide holistic learning experience to their graduates. For instance, in the law programme, Alliance has got moot court competitions. This is a cocurricular activity. Alliance has academic clubs that are co-curricular in nature which cater to enhancing knowledge in a certain domain and to prepare them for competitions in the managerial, finance, marketing fields. These have a technical interface with theory and practice – with what Dr. Angur calls the rigor and relevance part. That interface is what is done through co-curricular activities. For instance, Alliance ensures interactions between their students and industry, and enable industry visits for their graduates so they can understand the application of theory. Alliance law students are

working under accomplished lawyers, and their business students get to work with CEOs and senior executives of companies. Alliance is constantly looking for innovative ways to bridge the relevance gap. Extra-curricular activities like sports, drama etc are also encouraged with equal vigour which will help students enhance their personality. Starting from last academic year, Alliance has introduced some very significant humanities-based courses in all their programmes. The purpose of doing this is precisely to impart holistic education, with the aim that students should not only excel in their respective professional fields but also have to develop into better human beings. Students need to understand that their actions impact not only the company, but the people or community around them. Alliance is taking this aspect very seriously and has done it much more effectively from last academic year. Alliance University goes out of its way to ensure that they are in a position to attract the best talent and give scholarships to the deserving ones. The focus isn’t on increasing the number of scholarships but to identify the most meritorious students and help them in whatever way. Highly meritorious students get a free waiver, meaning they don’t have to pay any tuition. Alliance also identifies highly accomplished students in various other fields – national-level players in various sports etc – who also receive significant aid. Alliance University already has around 50 international collaborations. Now its focus is on strengthening the existing relationships and manage them well and build on shared values, so that Alliance students are benefitted. Alliance University has been running an incubation centre for almost 9 years now. Now Alliance is introducing different ways by which their services can be utilized more fully, not only by students but also the general public, so that startup companies can become

members of the incubation centre, and Alliance is able to provide them with the required skill sets. India’s education system continues to face problems pertaining to the Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER), which despite steadily increasing, is still far below the world average. This ratio is only about 20% in India, that is only 1/5th of those in the age group of between 18-24 are in college. The rest of the 80% who aren’t enrolled in any college, also need to improve their skill set if they are to get proper jobs. Keeping this in mind, Alliance has created a Centre for Skill Development, named after Chancellor’s parents – Girija Angur & Gundappa Angur National Centre for Skill Development. Dr. Angur and his wife have invested in it and designed courses in conjunction with the National Skill Development Centre. The centre has been housed near the campus itself and the infrastructure will be solely dedicated to the workings of the Centre. Institutions of higher learning worldwide have embarked on Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) approach for over 10 years now. Many Indian universities are also doing this in one way or the other. Alliance University isn’t far behind and they encourage students to add to the plethora of courses taught in campus. These are either free courses or ones with minimal financial investment. Alliance University, in a short span of around 10 years, has developed into one of the leading universities for higher education. Now under Dr. Angur’s visionary guidance, Alliance is always looking at what the future holds and strives every day to make a mark in higher education in India and abroad. Alliance is committed to the creation of knowledge by making their research much more useful to the society at large.




FullyEquipped for Future When it comes to a modern or even next-generation university, excellence has gone beyond classrooms and labs. Today, higher education excellence rests on such pillars like international tie-ups, industry collaboration, research, conferences, and placements. JSS University, based in Karnataka and Tamilnadu, comes around with flying colours in all five of these new emerging pillars. JSS has one of the most extensive and actually working relationships for student and faculty exchange with renowned universities in USA, Australia, & Asia. A pioneer in industry collaborations, JSS has even started an Innovation Centre in Connected Cardiac Care in its Mysore campus in tie-up with a leading Silicon Valley startup. The deemed university conducts cutting-edge seminars, workshops and conferences in emerging technologies like 3D Printing, and on how it can be adapted to its stronghold



of healthcare. Its conferences are a huge success as it has active partnerships with the world’s best organizations like WHO, EAFO, ICMR, UMC etc. No wonder then that JSS students are getting placed every year with some of the finest MNCs in the country like Dr. Reddys Lab, Micro Labs, Himalaya Drugs, Mylan, Biocon, Cipla, Novartis, Unilever, Pfizer, Astra Zeneca Pharma, Narayana Hrudayalaya, Columbia Asia Hospital, and many more. JSS is also expected to be a leading contender for various new government initiatives like ‘Institutes of Eminence’, Teacher Associateship for Research Excellence (TARE), Overseas Visiting Doctoral Fellowship, Distinguished Investigator Award (DIA) and Augmenting Writing Skills for Articulating Research (AWSAR) program.

A deemed university in Karnataka from the private, self-financed sector, JSS University is accredited by NAAC with A Grade and comes at leading positions in the NIRF ranking by MHRD. JSS stands for Jagadguru Sri Shivarathreeshwara, and is promoted by JSS Mahavidyapeetha, one of Asia’s largest educational groups. JSS University is focussed on medical and health-related studies, and comprises JSS Medical College, JSS Dental College and JSS College of Pharmacy at the main campus in Mysore as well as a second pharmacy college in Ootacamund. Sri Shivarathri Deshikendra Mahaswamiji serves as the Chancellor of the University, while BN Betkerur is Pro Chancellor, and Dr. B Suresh is the Vice Chancellor. The institute is a pioneering leader in the medical science research space and has noteworthy international tie-ups to go with its growing stature. The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's (SIUE) School of Pharmacy has partnered with JSS

College of Pharmacy since 2 years to offer a student exchange program. Two students in their final year of pharmacy education have the opportunity to complete an elective rotation at each respective institution. SIUE students spend five weeks in India, while JSS students spend eight weeks in USA. Two students from the JSS College of Pharmacy, Nickita Benny and Bhagya Sree, are currently shadowing SIUE’s Kelly Gable, PharmD, BCPP, in the department of psychiatry in a St. Louis family healthcare center. The university or its constituent colleges have tie-ups with La Trobe University, Australia; Khon Kaen University, Thailand; University of Southern Nevada, USA; Long Island University, USA; AIMST University, Malaysia; Howard University, USA; University of Illinois, USA; National

Institutes of Health, USA; and Oman Medical College, Oman. Recently, JSS University announced the formation of an Innovation Centre in Connected Cardiac Care in collaboration with iMedrix at the University's main campus in Mysore. iMedrix is a mobile health startup based out of Silicon Valley and Bangalore. Given the rate at which the epidemic of Cardio Vascular Diseases and life style diseases is spreading, this Centre will focus on an integrated, multi-disciplinary approach to the early detection, prevention, acute care and follow-up of heart diseases and related comorbidities such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension and abnormal lipid profiles. "The advent of digital, connected technologies in medicine holds immense potential. JSS University is



pleased to have formed a first of its kind Centre in India. We will pioneer new models of integrated and affordable, preventive and predictive cardiac care for the population of this region" said Dr. B.N.Suresh, Vice Chancellor of JSS University.

Mahavidyapeetha, witnessed the inauguration of its Biochemical Society of the Department of Biochemistry with a view to stress the importance of science and technology for increasing crop production and other aspects of agricultural sciences.

Dr Suresh is a frequent speaker at medical and innovation conferences and recently stated how ‘pharmacy education in India had undergone a paradigm shift in the last two decades from the development of novel drug delivery systems to the pharmacogenomics based personalised medicine while the response is slower compared to Western countries’. He added that biotechnologists, chemists, materials science, experts and chemical engineers have started playing leadership role in driving the drug discovery and development process.

In the field of banking, JSS Centre for Management Studies alongwith Department of Management Studies, JSS Science & Technology University organized a day-long workshop for the students of MBA Corporate Finance and MBA Finance. The event saw Morgan Stanley’s Global Derivatives Support Manager Daniel Madar deliver some interesting insights to the students. Corporation

The JSS College for Women, a constituent college of the JSS Dr. B Suresh Vice Chancellor



developing a new generation skill university through the Pradhan Mantri Koushalya Kendras (PMKK), which are being organized in every district in the country. Going beyond industry, JSS University has also worked with cutting-edge frontline research organizations like World Health Organization (WHO), Eurasian Federation of Oncology (EAFO), Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR), Uppsala Monitoring Centre (UMC) etc, and renowned scientists from these institutes have graced JSS campus as guest lecturers. Bank General Manager (retd.) Ranga Swamy, who is also a visiting professor at JSS CMS, spoke on the impact of bank consolidation on corporate finance. The JSS Dental College and Hospital recently organized a CDE programme on ‘3D Printing and its applications for health care’. The speakers enlightened the audience about 3D printing and its applications for health care. JSS University is also in the fray for

JSS postgraduate students have also undertaken their project works in leading corporations like Aurobindo, Biocon, Himalaya, Hindustan Unilever, Lupin, Micro Labs, Mylan Labs, Novo Nordisk, Orchid Healthcare, Philips etc. JSS University is home to a Centre of Excellence in Molecular Biology and Natural Products Research, which is spearheading the university’s efforts in knowledge creation and dissemination of the same to the

BN Betkerur, Pro Chancellor society around. JSS students have also excelled in career placements during the past year with students from its various streams getting absorbed by numerous organizations including Dr. Reddys Lab, Micro Labs, Himalaya Drugs, Mylan, Biocon, Cipla, Novartis, Unilever, Pfizer, Astra Zeneca Pharma, Narayana Hrudayalaya, Columbia Asia Hospital, and many more. Around 350 students have received 436 offers from IT giants such as Accenture, Infosys and Wipro




POISED TO BE FIRST AMONG EQUALS Nitte University and Nitte Educational Institutions of Karnataka are among the crème de la crème of private higher educational institutions in South India. But increasingly, all peer institutions in the sector are competing intensely by way of apparent metrics like infrastructure and facilities. This has given rise to a situation of apparent similarity among various institutions, but with the upcoming level playing ground for public and private institutions promised by various government initiatives like ‘Institutes of Eminence’, Teacher Associateship for Research Excellence (TARE), Overseas Visiting Doctoral Fellowship, Distinguished Investigator Award (DIA) and Augmenting Writing Skills for Articulating Research (AWSAR) program, Nitte Group of Institutions are decisively moving up its game into the next orbit and planning meticulously to compete with India’s best public universities even, and thus differentiating itself distinctly from the overcrowded private and deemed university space. Towards this, it is focusing on integrated research programs, promotion of innovation, and focus on sunrise knowledge sectors like stem-cell research. It is collaborating with multiple arms of Indian Government like DST, NITI Aayog etc, as well as with foreign governments like that of Belgium. NITI Aayog has already selected a Nitte institution as a startup district with innovation hub along with the prestigious NIT Suratkal. Nitte SEASONAL MAGAZINE


University has also tied up with some of the best public universities in US like University of Minnesota, to further student and faculty exchange. Its various arms like its Management Institute and Medical College are doing their level best to stay relevant and influential in the industry and community, by furthering causes like MSME growth and community medicine.

itte University has always been a stalwart in the research and development arena. In fact, the university has a specially designated Dean for R&D activities, who looks into quality checks in the research literature leading to PhD degrees. At the funding level, the institution is involved in sponsored research. It has been obtaining funding from VTU, DST and AICTE for carrying out sponsored research and also for developing research facilities. In the last few years, the college has received funding to the tune of nearly 10 million rupees for research activities. Presently, about 20 research scholars are working in the research centre and several scholars have already obtained their Ph.D. The faculty members of the institution have about 250 research

papers published in research journals and subsequently presented in national and international conferences held in India and abroad. The university looks poised to strengthen its research capability further and the presence of a strong research culture should help the institute to redefine its curriculum to suit the demands of quality, cutting-edge research work. However, there have also been some encouraging initiatives mooted by the institute in collaboration with governmental and nongovernmental orgainizations. NITI Aayog, the policy think tank of the Government of India, recently announced that it would soon give the ‘innovation hub’ tag to NMAM Institute of Technology (NMAMIT), an autonomous engineering college under the Nitte Education Trust. The

announcement came from none other than India’s Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. Apart from the coveted recognition, NMAMIT, Karkala, and NIT-K, Surathkal, will jointly execute a couple of projects under this programme, while they will also execute some independent ones. Senior professors from the country's premier technical institutions will lend their support for proper execution of the projects. NMAMIT and NIT-K, Surathkal, have also been chosen as India's first start-up districts with incubators, by the ministry of commerce and industry. Connectivity (air, road, sea and rail), presence of several education institutions, state-ofart facilities, student resources and infrastructure, were key factors to get these institutions selected for the centre. Niranjan N Chiplunkar, principal,



NMAIT said that the institution has done construction activities on a 10,000 square foot area for the incubation centre. "We have already completed works of the administration area, which is about 2,000 square feet, and are awaiting further communication from the government in this regard," he said. In the sphere of management and economics, Nitte University’s Justice K S. Hegde Institute of Management has teamed up with Infopace Management Private Limited (nodal agency for Quality Council of India) in Bangalore to raise an awareness programme on ‘zero effect and zero defect’ for owners of micro, small and medium enterprises. This was a unique initiative launched by the Union government for MSME sector to enhance the quality of products matching global standards. Always known to be a major influencer in the scientific field, Nitte University continued its outstanding contribution in stem cell research. The second SEASONAL MAGAZINE


biennial national conference on 'Advances in stem cell research and cellbased therapy with emphasis on orthopaedic, dermatological and dental applications' was jointly organized by Nitte University Centre for Stem Cell Research and Regenerative Medicine (NUCSReM) and Department of Orthopaedics, KSHEMA. The conference comprised seven scientific sessions, a total of 16 faculty talks, eight delegates' paper presentations and 35 poster presentations with the participation of 190 delegates. It was inaugurated by University Chancellor N Vinay Hegde, who emphasized the growing importance of stem cell research in medical education. The conference was also presided over by newly appointed Vice Chancellor Prof B Satheesh Kumar Bhandary, Pro Vice-Chancellor M S Moodithaya and Pro Chancellor Prof Shantharam Shetty. Nitte (Deemed to be University) is also one of the select few higher education institutions in India to be selected by the

Vinaya Hegde, Chancellor

Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India for support under bilateral cooperation with Ghent University, Belgium, within the framework of DST-BELSPO (Belgian Federal Science Policy Office) IndoBelgian Research and Technology Cooperation. The institute held an international workshop on ‘Vibrios in one health’ which saw the presence of scientists from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden (Prof. Anna Godhe); University of Plymouth, UK (Dr Lucy Turner); University of Sabaragamua, Sri Lanka (Dr Dharshane Ruwandeepika). The international workshop was inaugurated by Prof Dr Satheesh Kumar Bhandary, vice chancellor. He alluded to his own experience of handling cases of cholera and diarrheal diseases in his medical career. Professor Bhandary explained the ongoing international collaborations in Nitte (Deemed to be University) and called for greater multidisciplinary research in dealing with public health and food safety issues. The workshop was facilitated by Prof Peter Bossier from University of Ghent. One of the main highlights of Nitte (Deemed to be University)’s exchange programme is the one with the University of Minnesota, USA. As part of its Global Health initiative, six Master of Public Health (MPH) students from the University of Minnesota, USA, were in Mangaluru and Nitte to attend the second year MPH student exchange programme hosted by the Division of Public Health, K S Hegde Medical Academy. The two-week long programme titled 'Tobacco or Health, the balancing game in India' focussed on health system studies related to tobacco control and non-communicable diseases in rural South India. The students were exposed intensively to various components of health care delivery systems from community to tertiary care in Government and private sectors such as sub-centres, primary health centres, and satellite health centres run by Nitte Health Care. Vice Chancellor Prof Satheesh Kumar Bhandary awarded certificates of participation and credits to all participants. Joe Wiesenberger,

Vishal Hegde, Pro-Chancellor (ADMIN) Chief Administrative Officer from Minnesota School of Public Health was present during the event and appreciated the efforts of Nitte in delivering such a high-quality academic programme. A novel initiative by the students of the Nitte-based NMAM Institute of Technology (NMAMIT) saw the development of an Android application to ease the process of campus placements in college. he application enables the students to register for the companies who visit the institute for placements and also disseminate news and updates about the placements to the registered students. To date, the institute has been using an in-house developed placement portal for handling the students’ registration for placements, updating their profiles, informing them about company details and instant notifications by the placement department. Now, all these can be done using the app. The app was developed by a team of four students of Computer Science Engineering (CSE), namely, Kashif Minhaj, Mohandas Pai, Muthahir Mohammed and Tahaseen, under the guidance of Venugopala P.S. of CSE Department, with the technical support of Rajeevan and Praveen Shetty. Nitte (Deemed to be University) will also offer Syndicate Bank’s one year Post Graduate Diploma programme in Banking and Finance course. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


With the private university space maturing, more and more institutions are having similar facilities and even similar faculties. But the proof of the pudding is in the eating, and in recent years, many private universities are finding it pretty difficult to place their graduates and postgraduates in good reputed companies. But Greater Noida based Galgotias University is an exception to this trend, as under CEO Dhruv Galgotia’s dynamic leadership, the university has been equipping its graduates with a wide range of soft skills through its unique School of Lifelong Learning. Apart from soft skills, this School equips students to prepare for CTET, CAT, CMAT, BANK PO exam etc. This has become imperative as jobs in the IT sector are on the wane, whereas the formal or public sector has been making a dramatic comeback.



Galgotias’ computer science and application students are also being equipped to make the best use of emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Augmented Reality and Big Data. And even more importantly, GU recognizes that not all students are born to be employees, and are going the extra mile to ensure that all with the entrepreneuria spark are nurtured to attempt larger-than-life projects. For instance, towards this, Galgotias University had recently hosted Asia’s largest Hybrid Vehicle Challenge as well as Go Karting Race. Galgotias is also expected to be a leading contender for some of the new government initiatives like ‘Institutes of Eminence’, Teacher Associateship for Research Excellence (TARE), Overseas Visiting Doctoral Fellowship, Distinguished Investigator Award (DIA) and Augmenting Writing Skills for Articulating Research (AWSAR) program.

n e e d U o e l e s t o o w f r s d g h

Galgotias University is ahead of competition in numerous fronts. The varsity is steadfastly devoted to excellence in teaching, research and innovation and not to mention the attention given to low studentto-faculty ratio. The latter parameter is one of the prime reasons why Galgotias University is able to place sufficient personal attention and mentoring opportunities for its students. The commendable placement record is also an indicator of the varsity’s focus on upholding the highest academic standards right from selecting top faculty, introducing world-class pedagogical practices to personality development of the students. Last year, over 120 top corporates came for placement. According to

university statistics, 84% computer science students got placed and the salary package offered was between the range of Rs.3 lakh to Rs.6 lakh. Industrial visits are important in the career of a student who is pursuing a professional degree. It is a mandated part of the curriculum. Galgotias University has arranged industrial visits with an objective of providing students functional opportunity and help combine theoretical knowledge with practical work experience. The following sites were visited by students: Nandi Polytube, Dilli Electrical, Metal Innovation, Ankur Exports, Barsat Engineering, Cell-Com Tele Services Pvt. Ltd., Sai Card Home pvt. Ltd and Optics Karkhana. It also houses what they call as the ‘School of Life Long Learning’. The



centre ‘grooms students of Galgotias University in multidimensional areas thereby enabling them to effortlessly face the challenges of corporate world and also to become a better human being once they pass out from the campus’. School of Life Long Learning comprises of 30 trainers having cumulative training and teaching experience of 200 plus years in some of top training companies of the country. They have been veterans in their field and have played a very vital role in framing the entire pedagogy, teaching methodology and framework of the School. School of Life Long Learning starts training students from the first year till final year so that by the time these students reach the end of their program they

are capable enough to crack the selection process of the top companies who visit the university for campus recruitment. The School has been grooming students of B.Tech., M.Tech., MBA, MCA and BCA. The School has prepared the students of B.Ed. for CTET exam and has also started preparing students for various competitive exams like CAT, CMAT, BANK PO etc. The pre-final and final year students are given extra grooming through an exclusive two month program called “Campus to Corporate” which enables students to not only get their dream job but also seamlessly blend into the corporate world. The campus also boasts of a state-ofthe-art library facility, which is located at the heart of the academic complex. The library is designed in three

spacious, centrally air-conditioned halls, equipped with modern & comfortable furniture and provides excellent academic ambience for the students. Students can access thousands of research and learning resources in print and online, and derive benefit from the library`s commitment of providing high-quality resources and services. The library also offers access to thousands of electronic books, journals and databases. The year has already begun on a positive note for the Greater-Noida based university, which has an enrollment of over 15,000 students across more than 100 undergraduate and post graduate programs. In a recent event organized by the New Indian Express called ThinkEdu Conclave, Dhruv Galgotia, CEO of Galgotias University, spoke about how AI, Augmented Reality and Big Data can help transform the face of education. “The workplace of tomorrow will see a dramatic change and if universities do not acknowledge these changes now, they will soon perish,” he said. The Galgotias Commerce Society recently organized the 4th annual national workshop on finance and accounting solution through Tally. Participants were provided with certificates after evaluation. The university also sends its students for international internships, one of which went to Ashish Kumar Lath, who got the opportunity to travel to Gdansk, Poland. Students of Mechanical Engineering from across Asia gathered at the Galgotias University campus to participate in the biggest Hybrid Vehicle Challenge and Go Karting Race. The School of Mechanical Engineering, Galgotias University organized this event in partnership with Ministry of New & Renewable Energy and Imperial Society of



Innovative Engineers (ISIE). The five daylong event aimed at promoting the biggest ever student's talent pool of manufacturing the motorsport vehicles and putting it to a real time test in the racing track. The idea was to showcase the designing and manufacturing skill of engineering students participating from universities and institutions from across India and its neighboring countries such as Bangladesh, Srilanka, Bhutan etc. A hybrid car was made by the students of SECE Galgotias University. More than 90 teams from across Asia participated in this hybrid formula race which was held at the Buddha International Circuit, Greater Noida and includes reputed engineering institutions from states such as Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, Maharashtra and UP. Nearly 300 students are expected to participate in the event which includes one allwomen team and eight electrical vehicle teams. Ms. Bani Yadav, International Fastest Women Rally Driver was present to encourage the participants. On this occasion, Vice Chancellor Prof. (Dr.) Renu Luthra stressed the significance of the event for the students. She said, "The hybrid vehicle challenge shall provide an opportunity to students for Technology, Research & Engineering skill development as they get experience of real world engineering design projects. Also, the automotive industry is constantly bringing new technologies whether it is for safety, entertainment, usefulness or just pure innovation. It is important that students equip themselves with skills related to design and innovation so that they are ready with the skill set that the industry requires of them". Galgotias University and ISIE also roped in several placement partners to

get the talented students exposed and absorbed in the industry. The varsity organized a huge placement drive at the campus with big brand names such as ISIE India, J.S. Design, Tech Imperial and Speedways Electric. The university also provides opportunities for students to take part in conferences happening in and around the city. Recently, Dean prof. Ashia Qureshi along with 4th year BSc nursing students participated in the conference on e-Heath care organised in AIIMS, New Delhi. Professor Qureshi spoke on role of nurses in EHealth care and nursing information system. The students gained rich experience during 3-day workshop. The School of Electrical, Electronics& Communication Engineering organized a training programme, specially designed for engineering colleges and polytechnic teachers and will mainly deal with programming using MATLAB and LabView. The aim of the programme was to update the knowledge in the emerging and

upcoming topics in the subject area and make the teachers conversant with the MATLAB and LabView software and its interface with hardware. The Galgotias Business School has been featured in Dun & Bradstreet’s India’s leading business schools. The publication profiles 168 universities affiliated as well as private Business Schools in India that fall under the purview of the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) and/or governed by the Ministry of Human Resource Development. The Centre of Intellectual Property Rights Studies (CIPRS), School of Law, Galgotias University, in association with Origin IP Academy LLP, Bangalore held a one-day national workshop on Emerging issues in Intellectual Property Rights. The workshop aimed to increase knowledge and understanding of intellectual property law concepts and issues and its overview and relevance. SEASONAL MAGAZINE


GUCCI PRESENTS WOMEN'S PRE-FALL 2018 COLLECTION A riot of colors, sophistication, layered looks, patterns and motifs, Alessandro Michele’s Women’s Pre-Fall 2018 collection for Gucci is as vibrant as ever. With the photo campaign shot by Peter Schlesinger, some of the looks include NY Yankees baseball caps as a first result of a collaboration between Gucci and the Major League Baseball (MLB).

GUCCI PRESENTS WOMEN'S PRE-FALL 2018 COLLECTION A riot of colors, sophistication, layered looks, patterns and motifs, Alessandro Michele’s Women’s PreFall 2018 collection for Gucci is as vibrant as ever. With the photo campaign shot by Peter Schlesinger, some of the looks include NY Yankees baseball caps as a first result of a collaboration between Gucci and the Major League Baseball (MLB).


Indian fashion couturier, JJ Valaya, marked the completion of 25 years in Indian fashion with The Alika Project. The event also celebrated the brand’s long-standing association with Swarovski. An evening was hosted at the Bikaner House to commemorate this milestone with a unique exhibit of 25 Alika jackets, created by the House of Valaya, but styled by 24 leading creative influencers of India in addition to one, The Black Bride, which is an all Valaya look. JJ Valaya has created 25 special editions of the ALIKA, using his signature embroideries, detailing and crystals from Swarovski. Each jacket represents one year of the 25 years of House SEASONAL MAGAZINE



The allure of sustainable driving is poised to enter another new dimension as BMW introduced the first-ever BMW i8 Roadster matching BMW eDrive technology with the Ultimate Driving Machine. The BMW i8 Roadster takes the BMW i8’s combination of locally emissionfree mobility, high-caliber performance and adds top-down driving experience. The Roadster offers zero CO2 emissions, bringing an extra edge of purity to open-air driving. An optimized BMW eDrive technology means more power – total output increased to 369 hp (+12 hp), a refined high-voltage battery with increased capacity and range, the first-ever BMW i8 Roadster can cover up to 18 miles (preliminary) in purely electric driving.

Seasonal Magazine - February 2018  

Seasonal Magazine - February 2018

Seasonal Magazine - February 2018  

Seasonal Magazine - February 2018