HPCL Current Affairs - 2019

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Govt. accords ‘Maharatna’ status to Power Grid Corp, HPCL

Government of India has accorded ‘Maharatna’ status to public sector undertaking’s (PSU’s) Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) and Power Grid Corporation. Two separate orders to this effect were issued by Department of Public Enterprises, under Union Ministry of Heavy Industry and Public Enterprises.

Key Highlights

The grant of Maharatna status to state-owned enterprises Hindustan Petroleum and Power Grid Corporation will impart greater operational and financial autonomy thus enhancing powers to their Boards to take financial decisions.

Boards of Maharatna PSU can make equity investments to undertake financial joint ventures (JV) and wholly owned subsidiaries and undertake mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in India as well as abroad. This is however subjected to a ceiling of 15% of net worth of concerned CPSE, limited to Rs 5,000 crore in one project.

The Boards can also structure and implement schemes relating to personnel as well as human resource management and training. They can also enter into technology JVs or other strategic alliances, among others.

Holding companies of a ‘Maharatna’ PSU are also empowered to float fresh equity, transfer assets, divest shareholding in subsidiaries, but are subjected to condition that the delegation will only be in respect of subsidiaries set up by holding company.

 Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) & Power Grid Corporation of India

It is an Indian oil and natural gas company which is headquartered at Mumbai, Maharashtra. It was incorporated in 1974 after the takeover and merger of erstwhile Esso Standard and Lube India. The merger was done through the Esso (Acquisition of Undertaking in India) Act passed by Parliament.

Power Grid Corporation of India Limited is state-owned Maharatna company. It is India’s largest electric power transmission utility firm engaged mainly in Transmission of Power. It is a listed company since 2007 and is headquartered in Gurugram, Haryana.

MoU for sale of FASTag

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) has been signed between Indian Highways Management Company Limited (IMHCL) and leading Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) like BPCL, HPCL and IOCL for sale of FASTags through their petrol pumps.

FASTag

FASTag is an electronic toll collection system operated by the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI). FASTag enables automatic deduction of toll charges and lets you pass through the toll plaza without stopping for the cash transaction.

FASTags are linked to a prepaid account from which the applicable toll amount is deducted automatically. FASTag employs Radio-frequency Identification (RFID) technology.

Features of the FASTag

The features of the FASTag are:

  • FASTag is bank neutral and can be linked to customers’ choice of bank accounts.
  • Together with providing flexibility and convenience to the users, FASTag is also user-friendly as there will be no requirement of fulfilling KYC obligations.
  • FASTag apps provide provides real-time recharge of any FASTag through UPI by linking customer’s bank account with IHMCL FASTags.

There are plans to expand the FASTag to allow purchasing fuel at petrol pumps in future.

Radio-frequency Identification (RFID) technology

Radio-frequency Identification (RFID) technology uses electromagnetic fields to automatically identify and track tags which are containing electronically-stored information.

A two-way radio transmitter-receivers called interrogators or readers send a signal to the tag and read its response. The RFID reader transmits an encoded radio signal to interrogate the tag. The tag receives the message and then responds with its identification and other information.