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Moneylife » Reliance Life’s murky business alliances and practices
Multi level marketing, business from unlicensed entities, dubious corporate agents, licensed advisor signatures forged, foreign tour packages, huge payments for contests, lead generation agreement violation, excessive payments for dissemination of information and much more in IRDA order
Reliance Life Insurance Company (Reliance Life) is facing the heat from Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) for several violations leading to Rs1.77 crore penalty. IRDA order has 47 charges along with decision on each one, but there is no mention about the glaring corporate agent AB Capital fraud selling of policies with “interest free loan of 10 times premium”. IRDA did come up with charges which showcase Reliance Life’s murky business alliances, payouts and dubious business practices. IRDA order shows serious lapses in Reliance Life and hence the insurer cannot claim to be a victim of fraudulent selling.
Moneylife has consistently maintained that insurance policies are logged by valid entities and hence insurer needs to trace the relation between fraudulent sellers and the valid entity logging the sale.
Here are highlights of IRDA order:
Multi level marketing and unlicensed entities: Business is sourced from unlicensed entities through Multi Level Marketing (MLM) and was logged into the code of licensed entities. Business was procured by forged signatures/without signatures at the space specified in the agents confidential report column. There are instances wherein signature of IRDA licensed advisor specified persons is either forged or not available. There are cases of business being sourced through unlicensed entities but booked under broker code of Net ambit Insurance Broking India Ltd.
Life Insurer is associated with V-Care Life involved in MLM and is getting business logged in the name of some of the agents. It was also observed that some of the Channel Development Associates (CDAs) are indulging in MLM through the agents mapped to them and no systems are in place to verify the details of agents that sourced the proposals. Mutyala Getwin Online Marketing Private Limited is doing insurance business in multilevel marketing model.
Leads obtained and payments are made to the various corporate agents based on agreements and in the process unlicensed entities solicited insurance business was logged into various code numbers of ‘Reliance Third Party Distribution Channel’ which is one of the new business verticals of the insurer.
Corporate agent Pinnacle Insurance Agency is engaged in MLM activities. They offer high value gifts to its distributors and the criteria for award winning are also published on their website. Corporate agent admitted to involvement of two of its employees in the multi level marketing activities. IRDA observed that the life insurer has failed to monitor the activities of the corporate agent. This is considered as a serious lapse and hence Reliance Life is told to investigate into the manner in which the corporate agent is soliciting the insurance business and submit actions initiated within 30 days from the date of the order.
Reliance Life’s drive against fraud callers – Will it take action against its corporate agent AB Capital?
Is Reliance Life’s corporate agent AB Capital involved in fraudulent “interest-free loan” offers? Will Reliance or the regulators initiate action?
Contests and foreign tour packages: Extra payouts were made towards contests, apart from commission, to some individual agents. Instances are noticed where payments other than eligible commission/ brokerage were made to corporate agents and brokers in the name of contests and other related activities. Further expenses towards foreign tour packages were also incurred, Rs71 lakh during 2010-11 and Rs1.03 crore during 2011-12, on some of the brokers and corporate agents. During 2010-11, huge payments of Rs12.82 crore were made towards “Referral Fees –Contests” against referral fee of Rs1.27 crore.
Lead generation agreement violation: An amount of Rs168.70 crores during 2010-11 and Rs45.21 crores during 2011- 12 (up to Dec 2011) were paid to various entities towards marketing and publicity. Significant amounts were paid to various entities towards “Marketing Activities”, “Dissemination of information” and “Generation of Leads” during the years 2010-11 and 2011-12. Dissemination charges of Rs74.89 crores were paid to about 641 entities during 2010-11and Rs35.31 crores to about 131 entities during 2011-12 (up to December 2011). Service Agreements entered revealed that these entities were engaged for lead generation and dissemination of information. IRDA order states that entering into service level agreements and making payments for lead generation and dissemination of information is not permitted even before IRDA (Sharing of Database) Regulations, 2010. Only Banks were allowed to be entered into referral agreements. Payment of significant monies for an unskilled job of distribution of publicity material under the guise of ‘Dissemination of Information’ is questionable.
Advertisements violation: In respect of product Reliance Premier Life, instances (Unique Ad id No: Mktg/sales pitch/version 1.0/August 2009, Mktg/poster/version 1.0/August 2009 and Mktg/hoarding/version 1.0/August 2009) were found where Advertisements filed with IRDA are different from that were issued to the public.
The advertisements bearing numbers Mktg/RTSIAP – Brochure/ version1.0/ November 2009, Mktg/RTSIAP-Brochure/version 1.1/April 2010 were not filed with the authority and are also not appearing in the advertisement register.
Anantha NarayananSivaraman Anant Narayan
RAJ PRADHAN | 17/04/2014 06:09 PM
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A division bench of Justice V M Kanade and Justice A K Menon said, “What we have noticed that such cases are increasing, where certain developers are forcing tenants of old buildings to vacate their residences against their will.”
They said, “creating such situations and forcing the tenants to vacant they residence is not correct and it has to stop.”
Elaborating more over their problem Rima states in the petition that, the buildings water on the terrace is damaged and is leaking causing damage to the building, since, four years he has occupied the premises the developer has not done any repairing and nor he is allowing them to repair it. The leakage is causing severe damage to the building.
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815 Million Voters
9,30,000 Polling Booths
Elections spread over 9 days
16.5 Million people will help conduct the elections
India has 300 Million more voters than the next 3 largest democracies (US, Indonesia & Brazil) combined !
Pineapples contain bromelain, an enzyme with anti-inflammatory properties. It fights infections and kills bacteria. The juice from fresh pineapples can suppress coughs five times more effectively than cough syrup.
One cup of pineapple juice contains nearly 50% of the daily requirement for vitamin C intake. This helpful nutrient works to implement the use of vital enzymes within the body that regulate metabolism and energy conversion.
Pineapple juice also contains high levels of manganese, a mineral that predominately helps form healthy connective tissue and bones. Manganese works to absorb more calcium, metabolize carbohydrates and fats, plus increases regular nerve function.
Some bromelain appears to be absorbed by the body intact, so it’s also thought to have effects outside the digestive tract. In fact, bromelain is often marketed as a natural anti-inflammatory for conditions such as arthritis. It’s one of the most popular supplements in Germany, where it is approved for the treatment of inflammation and swelling of the nose and sinuses due to surgery or injury.
If you have one of many types of persistent coughs and it’s not something more serious like pneumonia, reach for pineapple juice instead of cough syrup. It’s less expensive, has no toxic chemicals and contains the nutrients that will help fight a cold.
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police station in case a file goes missing. In one case under the RTI, the CIC asked the PIO to ‘reconstruct’ the missing file to facilitate justice to a doctor allegedly involved in a criminal caseInformation Commissioners usually ask PIOs to lodge an FIR in the
The CIC ordered the PIO and FAA to search for the ‘missing’ file and lodge a first information report (FIR) at the police station about the missing file. Two years went by and yet the file could not be found and FIR was also not lodged. Considering that Dr Kumar’s fate lay in the finding of that file, CIC M Sridhar Acharyulu in a historic decision asked the hospital to ‘reconstruct’ the missing file in February 2014.
The CIC stated, “Earlier, the Commission did not direct the Respondent to recreate the file. Since the Commission found that Respondent Authority was not successful in tracingthe file, it is necessary in the interest of providing required information by the Appellant, which might help him prove the innocence of Dr Prashant Kumar, directs the PIO to collect the information from different sources to reconstruct the file of Dr Prashant Kumar as far as possible. The Appellant too offered to cooperate with the PIO in reconstructing the necessary documents to prepare the file of Dr Prashant Kumar.”
Following is the chronology of this interesting RTI case as projected in theCIC order of 24 February 2014.
- Kishore filed an RTI application dt.9.4.12 with the PIO, Lok Nayak Hospital (under Section 7 of the RTI Act) seeking information against nine points with regard to show cause notice issued to Dr Prashant Kumar He had also filed another RTI application regarding payments made to Dr Kumar
- On not receiving any reply for both his applications he filed an appeal the Appellate Authority reiterating his request for information
- The Appellant, Kishore, made a second appeal stating that PIO has made it a standard practice to say records are not available and FAA has made it a practice not to respond or give any hearing.
- During the hearing, Dr Deepak Kumar Singh, Respondent Officer submitted that records pertaining to Dr Prashant Kumar are not available. Kishore submitted that since Dr Prashant is in prison, he is seeking information on behalf of Dr Prashant Kumar.
- Kishore submitted that CIC had ordered the Appellate Authority to conduct an enquiry u/s 18(2) of the RTI Act into the whereabouts of the missing personal file of Dr Prashant Kumar. The relevant portion of the order had stated: “…the Commission believes that it will be in the interest of the appellant to remand the case back to the First Appellate Authority with a direction that he/ she conduct an enquiry as per provisions u/s 18(2) of the RTI Act into the whereabouts of the missing personal file of Dr Prashant Kumar, fix the responsibility and take appropriate action against the official found guilty of having misplaced the file. The enquiry report as also the report on action taken based on the outcome of the enquiry to be shared with the Appellant within four weeks of receipt of this order. An FIR too may be lodged with the police about the missing file once it is confirmed that the file remains untraceable. A copy of the FIR may be shared with the Appellant.” However, the hospital did not comply by the order”.
- The FAA informed the Commission that she had directed Dr Manju Mehra, AMS (Admn) to file an FIR. Dr Manju Mehra, AMS (Admn) informed the Commission that she had not filed the FIR with the police, since she felt that once the enquiry is over the filecan be reconstructed.
- Since the AMS (Admin) has given the reason for not lodging the FIR, the Commission directed that now that the enquiry has been conducted and enquiry report shared with the Appellant, the FIR may be lodged as directed by the Commission with the concerned branch of Delhi Police and copy of FIR share with the Appellant which was done.
- All through Kishore reiterated that Dr Prashant Kumar was implicated in a criminal caseand when he sought details of information from personal file of Dr Prashant Kumar which was not made available to him since 2012. The CIC order states, “He filed series of RTI applications and the matter came before Information Commissioner in 2012. The Respondent Authority did not comply with the directions of the Commission. The Appellant filed a non-compliance petition and Commission took a very serious objection and warned the Respondent with serious action considering that as willful violation of law. The Appellant pleaded that this information would help him to prove the innocence of Dr Prashant Kumar in a criminal case implicated by certain persons in the Public Authority. The Appellant also cited fact of missing file and non-compliance of CIC orders as indicators of biased action against Dr Prashant Kumar.”
CIC concluded in its order, “This case assumes very serious propositions and it affects the liberty of Dr Prashant Kumar who is totally depending on the discovery of missed file. There is a delay of more than two years in either tracing the file or fixing up the responsibility. The so-called enquiry conducted did not yield any result. Hence, the Commission is compelled to recommend that the Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD) to conduct an independent enquiry without involving officers of Respondent Public Authority and giving an opportunity to Appellant to provide his allegations against some of the officers of Public Authority and to provide innocence of Dr Prashant Kumar. The entire exercise is to be completed within two months of receipt of this order. A copy of the enquiry report along with the action taken shall be shared with the Appellant and the Commission within two weeks of completion of the exercise.”
The deadline for the enquiry report to be submitted to CIC is April.
Earlier, in a similar case, Shailesh Gandhi, the then Central Information Commissioner, on 29 July 2009 had directed the PIO to give a copy of the reconstructed file created by using papers and communications received by the appellant.
(Vinita Deshmukh is consulting editor of Moneylife, an RTI activist and convener of the Pune Metro Jagruti Abhiyaan. She is the recipient of prestigious awards like the Statesman Award for Rural Reporting which she won twice in 1998 and 2005 and the Chameli Devi Jain award for outstanding media person for her investigation series on Dow Chemicals. She co-authored the book “To The Last Bullet – The Inspiring Story of A Braveheart – Ashok Kamte” with Vinita Kamte and is the author of “The Mighty Fall”.)
…………. the massive spending on Aadhaar was sanctioned on the grounds that it would provide identity to millions of poor and disenfranchised Indians and allow them to get the benefits of government schemes and subsidies. In making these claims,Aadhaar hid many crucial facts.
These were: biometrics are not fool proof; finger prints change, have to be revalidated every few years and can be cloned easily; and the sub-contracted data collection process was flawed. People have multiple Aadhaar numbers and Aadhaar numbers have been issued to chairs and tables and, as a sting operation confirmed, Aadhaar was easily issued to foreigners for a price and a letter from a politician.
On 26th March, CJ Karira, an activist, won an appeal against the UIDAI’s reluctance to respond to Right to Information (RTI) queries and obtained answers to some crucial questions. First, that oil companies are not using Aadhaar to ‘authenticate’ the identity, but only to ‘match’ the number for themselves. There is no way to delete biometric data if a person wants to ‘opt’ out of Aadhaar—there is no exit. The most stunning revelation was that UIDAI does not maintain any record of who the Aadhaar data is shared with or when.
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Election Watch Reporter (EWR) is an Android app to report election related complaints. Citizens can send complaints about violations of electoral law or over expenditure by candidates during their election campaigns.
Citizens can send complaints which include pictures and location through the app which will be forwarded to the officials of Election Commission of India and relevant election observers etc.
Each complaint will include 1) Picture 2) Google Map with exact location (GPS automatically picks this) 3) Category (from a list of categories) 4) Brief Description
The categories under which the complaints or reports can be filed are based on Media, Liquor or Drugs Distribution, Election Rally, etc.
Now, you can help to make the elections clean, free and fair by reporting violations to election commission of India. This app is managed by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch (NEW).
Click Here to download the app for your Android device
Help to make the elections clean, free and fair
World Consumer Rights Day was established on 15 March 1983 to promote consumer rights around the world. For WCRD 2014, we are calling on CI Members and Supporters to highlight the consumer issues that are undermining and frustrating the success of mobile phone services.
CI’s agenda for Phone Rights
CI’s Consumer Agenda for Fair Mobile Services addresses the issues that affect mobile consumers across the world, and we hope every CI Member and Supporter can join the call. Some of the issues we want to address are:
1. Provide consumers with access to an affordable, reliable service
Consumers want to be able to have access to affordable mobile services in order to communicate and to access information. It is only reasonable that they then expect those services to be consistent and of a high quality without drop outs in service.
2. Provide consumers with fair contracts explained in clear, complete and accessible language
Consumers often feel cheated by their mobile provider, either because of unfair contract terms and conditions or because they didn’t understand what they had signed. Telecom providers should always provide consumers with fair contracts with all relevant information explained clearly so that consumers can exercise their right to make informed choices.
3. Provide consumers with fair and transparent billing
Consumers shouldn’t be billed for services they didn’t request. We demand fairness and transparency in our bills, and protection from billing fraud.
4. Provide consumers with security and power over their own information
Telecoms providers and regulators alike must protect the personal data that consumers give up in order to use mobile services. Whilst giving consent to use personal data can enhance the experience of using a mobile phone, it can also compromise the consumer’s right to safety. Consumers must be able to set the terms of how this data is used.
5. Listen and respond to consumer complaints
Telecom providers should have effective complaints systems and if consumers are not satisfied there should be redress mechanisms to ensure a fair outcome. We must be able to penalise providers for abusive and unjust business practices.
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Root Canal is a common dental procedure that nearly every dentist will tell you is completely safe, despite the fact that scientists have been warning of its dangers for more than 100 years. Every day in the United States alone, 41,000 of these dental procedures are performed on patients who believe they are safely and permanently fixing their problem.
Sadly, the vast majority of dentists are oblivious to the serious potential health risks they are exposing their patients to, risks that persist for the rest of their patients’ lives. The American Dental Association claims root canals have been proven safe, but they have NO published data or actual research to substantiate this claim.
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