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