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Pharma – overdose of copying The nuclear option Welcome changes that testify to Jayalalithaa’s return to health PC’s preference for professionals More tributes to GR Insurance companies bleeding, yet no decision on increasing FDI limit! Making ‘my Amaravati’... Sweeter prospects for sugar Things happen by accident and not by design... Shale gas and its shallow future More Shakti to resource mobilisation... The Gulf aviation boom Kudos to NDTV... S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal Fortune for Indian Airlines China invests in India Road development slows down Polls and promises Russi Mody – a tribute A proud Madrasi Music happens R Sridhar steps down as CEO of Shriram Capital PPP mode for upgrading Corporation Hospitals Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks GM Technology at last! Computation of GDP – conundrums continue An inexplicable neglect Shanti and Sadhana through Music Noble nonagenarians... More Shakthi to Das’ elbow Build close rapport with business leaders Where is Rajaji? Recognition to role of NBFCs.... Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami Banning booze... F C Kohli - his concerns all embracing CRS, a jewel among managers, is no more. SoA @ 80 Shaming of Tamils by Tamil farmers at Delhi Plummeting profits of PSBs New IT products of Ramco in the pipeline… Tatas moving out of urea production... Building loyalty through the stomach Air Asia India will set new benchmarks for budget travel The balancing act Engineering seats go abegging Muffled voices for merit… EEC at the National Media Centre Wise Presidents Come elections, come advertisements... The few handicaps... The Swadeshi Trump When small is no larger beautiful.. Welcome focus on core competence Naidu’s return augurs well for Seemandhra Paytm karo... Revive development banks... Kulandai was a giant Tribute – UCAL Selvan… TGS- The king storyteller Fall in crude prices help in oil sector reform EVM is tamper-proof Secularism and anti-Hinduism He continues the focus on social amelioration Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria Valli, they are more marginalised When online building permits work…. The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu An informal presentation - analytical, forward locking... No Maha Koottani in TN... Revving up the manufacturing sector Of course, Gujarat is vibrant No mega rail project for Tamil Nadu Preserving for the future Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities Adharma of opposition politics Vibrant Gujarat S Ramanathan – a versatile musician, musicologist Streamlining mandatory third party cover Strengthen the base... to the lack of interest on the part of these to focus on original research. This despite the much lower costs of such research in India. The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines IPL type auction for VCs? CIPET hqrs to stay at Guindy – for the present? …and of a popular trade leader Convulsions in The Hindu For whom the bell tolls? Wanted: a second airport for Chennai Waning interest in public discussions… Tatas moving out of urea production... Rs.1600 crore paper board plant of TNPL Tribute The why of tax incentives Diamond jubilee of Egmore Samskrt School CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... Permanent secretariat for TN GIM A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Where a state respects its litterateurs… Increasing non co-operation of state leaders Protest masters... There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! A rich pool of talent not utilised…. Roaring Ro-Ro facility Modi storms Silicon Valley Put expensive assets created to use... 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Fuel for thought When the President was rendered homeless… Breaththrough in malaria control Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! Multi-faceted Venkat A professional at the helm of IRDA... Align crops to agro climate endowments… The rise and fall of Annamalai University Adapt Vajpayee dinner diplomacy Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu Online not in line with brick and mortar businesses... Measuring roof tops in terms of KW/MW Reliance’s TV – 18 ready to launch Tamil News Channel MHC should not return to its old indisciplined ways Airlines in India: cost and space Rahman at CIC A welcome initiative by the judiciary Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God... A C Muthiah – his munificent bequeaths to science Focus on quality of power - its only around 170-180V For whom the MIDS bell tolls? TN accounts for the largest recruits by the IT sector Readers' Mail The sea- saw battle continues... Discoms deserve better… Why this malaise in medical education? Which side are you, Montek? Make standards certification mandatory... Cement prices continue to rise… Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated Shipping woes of Chennai companies Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai No engine for this car A more liberated TN… Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara Poor quality of university VCs Modi and the lady Quality education through the PPP mode Kinetic Karnataka Nuclear power at the nucleus Scientists urged to take up farmer-oriented research ONGC at KG Basin WTO Meet: resolved to meet again Mersal magnified TIAM turns a full cycle A friendly business group Whistle-Stop Tour of Raghuram Rajan Delhi returns to BJP Parliament in paralysis... Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... Tough task taking states together London, London Narayan The rise and rise of KCP When TN politicians can emulate Kerala's TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... B H Kothari - a tribute Marketing expert Balagopal is no more All eyes on Sankara Nethralaya Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt Editor's Notes Silver Years of Madras Musings Colour-Chem’s colourful KRVS TELANGANA at last…BUT A yen for wastage… Mu Sigma – is no more West Bengal: mindless malignancy Poor representation for Kerala and TN in Cabinet Demise of a media baron... Auto components surge… Telangana in top gear… An enemy’s enemy is a friend L&T- the specialty of special purpose vehicles A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… GNS - 100: our first subscriber Intellectual of rare qualities Tribute – M V Murugappan Towards speedy justice When nations steal growth from one another… Bihar – Nitish Kumar adopts the Lalu model The power-full Hindujas Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil? Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai Solar thermal shines… Quality silica from Neyveli Funding the un-funded The ‘Ayyo-yes’ is no more Fortune 500 review Padma Bhushan for A Ramakrishna Why land prices zoom in TN? Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik Naidu will soon build a new Hyderabad Remembering Indira Sivasailam... When Ratan Tata visited SRM Delhi Chalo... L&T: focus on infrastructure and more infrastructure… The Jan Dhan bonanza This scant respect for Law Alexa – Talking Wikipedia Gas is the way forward Solar, solar everywhere … CII projects higher growth… TN – agglomerate land holdings without alienating ownership Moily’s bold thrust Editor's Says Haul over the coal The brown list of Venkitaramanan The ‘Jayanthi Tax.’ IAS invades NDDB... Boy, can you beat these? Excel Generators provide the vital back-up
 
Cement prices continue to rise…

There has been only modest success in controlling the rise in prices. Despite claims of big success in controlling inflation, there are run away increases in several items of common consumption. A paradox here relates to the creation of high capacity but low capacity utilisation and soaring prices. Cement and steel offer the most glaring examples. Cement manufacturers complain of working to just around 60 per cent of capacity. One doesn’t notice much of an increase in the cost of inputs like limestone.  

Yet look at the price distortion: a bag of cement in Chennai is sold at  Rs. 420 while it is sold around Rs. 300 in Delhi. The price has doubled in less than five years. There is already a case pending before the Competitive Commission of India which has charged several cement manufacturers of cartelisation. Likewise steel producers continue to increase prices by claiming better quality of structural steel; they seem to graduate year after year- from Fe430 to Fe500 and now Fe550 grades of steel. Manufacturers claim that the increased strength that should logically result in reduced consumption per unit of construction thus helping in price stability. But contractors do not agree. The result is unrelenting increase in cost of construction material that has resulted in unaffordable levels of housing prices. Property prices in prime locations in the city like K K Nagar have shot up from a level of Rs. 800 to 1000 a sq ft in 2001 to Rs. 11,000 to 12,000 per sq ft today. This in turn has led to huge unsold properties.

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