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Jaitley to meet banks’ heads to review bad loans, rate cut

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New Delhi: Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will meet heads of state-run banks on Monday to take stock of their distressed assets, or bad loans, as well as the situation following the Reserve Bank of India’s latest lowering of interest rates in September, among other issues, an official source said.

The source told reporters here that the performance meeting of public sector banks (PSBs) will also review the state of the Indradhanush programme to revive PSBs.

Taking the first step towards a holding company structure for state-run banks, the government in August announced the setting up of a Banks Board Bureau (BBB) that will recommend appointment of directors in PSBs and advise on ways of raising funds and dealing with stressed assets.

The gross non-performing assets (NPAs) of PSBs rose to 6.03 percent at June-end, as against 5.20 percent in March 2015.

Jaitley has allocated Rs.7,940 crore in the budget for recapitalisation of PSBs during this financial year.

The union cabinet had in December allowed state-run banks to raise up to Rs.160,000 crore from the capital markets by diluting the government stake in phases to 52 percent.

Noting the massive stressed assets of the state-run banks, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had late last month said the government would infuse Rs.70,000 crore in the PSBs over the next few years.

Jaitley had said in this regard in September that the government might consider reducing its stake in PSBs to 52 percent.

The finance minister is also expected to review the interest rate cut by banks following reduction in the key policy rate by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in September.

The RBI cut the repo rate at which it lends to commercial banks by 50 basis points to 6.75 percent.

The finance ministry source said the meeting would also review the steps taken by PSBs to prevent future misdemeanours like the Rs.6,100 crore Bank of Baroda black money remittance case.

Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha said last month that in the light of the developments relating to Bank of Baroda, “banks were exhorted to have a system in place to prevent such incidents”.

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Smartphone manufacturer Realme reduce price rates of its mobile phones:View reduced rates

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Realme 8 has got a Rs. 500 discount in India on purchases through Flipkart, the company has announced. It will now be available at a starting price of Rs. 14,499 instead of its original price of Rs. 14,999. The phone was launched in March this year alongside the Realme 8 Pro. It comes with a triple rear camera setup and a hole-punch cut out for the selfie camera. Realme 8 is powered by the MediaTek Helio G95 SoC and comes with a 5,000mAh battery. The Realme 8 with discounted price is listed on the Realme India site as well.

Realme 8 price cut in India

Realme has announced through a press release that the Realme 8 now starts at Rs. 14,499 for the 4GB RAM + 128GB variant, a Rs. 500 discount from its launch price. The 6GB + 128GB model can be purchased for Rs. 15,499 instead of Rs. 15,999 and the 8GB + 128GB model can be purchased for Rs. 16,499 instead of Rs. 16,999. Realme 8 is offered in Cyber Black and Cyber Silver colours, and the new pricing has been updated on Flipkart and Realme India website. It should be noted that as per the Realme India website, the discount is valid till May 14 only. We’ve reached out for clarity.

Shipping for the phone will depend on the region the phone is being shipped, based on the latest government guidelines with regards to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The dual-SIM (Nano) Realme 8 runs Android 11–based Realme UI 2.0. It features a 6.4-inch full-HD+ (1,080×2,400 pixels) Super AMOLED display with 90.8 percent screen to body ratio, 1,000 nits peak brightness, and a 180Hz touch sampling rate. It is powered by the octa-core MediaTek Helio G95 SoC and Mali-G76 MC4 GPU. The phone comes with up to 8GB LPDDR4x RAM and up to 128GB of UFS 2.1 storage that is expandable via a dedicated microSD card slot.

In terms of optics, the Realme 8 comes with a 64-megapixel primary sensor with an f/1.79 lens, an 8-megapixel sensor with an ultra-wide-angle f/2.25 lens and 119-degree field-of-view (FoV), a 2-megapixel macro shooter with f/2.4 aperture, and a 2-megapixel black and white sensor with an f/2.4 aperture. On the front, there is a 16-megapixel Sony IMX471 sensor with an f/2.45 aperture lens housed in a hole-punch cutout.

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