Daily GK Update: February 23rd, 2016.

ONGC alleges RIL deliberately extracted gas from its KG blocks.

ONGC has alleged that RIL in a “well-planned and deliberate strategy” produced about USD 1.4 billion worth of its gas over past six years and demanded that the Mukesh Ambani firm pay full compensation with 18 per cent interest.

HSBC’s Swiss, Dubai arms under lens for tax evasion by Indians.

Armed with “sufficient evidence”, Indian tax authorities have issued notices to global banking giant HSBC, warning of prosecution against its Swiss and Dubai arms for allegedly abetting tax evasion by four Indians and their families.

Apple CEO: US should withdraw demand for iPhone hack help.

Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook said in an email to employees that the U.S. government should withdraw its demand that Apple help the FBI hack a locked iPhone used by a shooter in last year’s deadly shooting in San Bernardino, California.

Govt. to divest 5% in NTPC.

The government announced it will be divesting five per cent of its stake in NTPC through the offer-for-sale route. The sale is expected to garner Rs.5,029 crore at a floor price of Rs.122 per share. The stake sale is to be spread over two days, with institutional bidders getting to buy shares on Tuesday and retail investors on Wednesday.The retail investors have 20 per cent of the shares reserved for them.

No patents for standalone software.

Mere computer programmes those not in conjunction with a novel hardware will not be granted patent in India, according to the latest guidelines of the Office of the Controller General of Patents, Designs & Trade Marks (CGPDTM). The Office of CGPDTM supervises the working of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) laws in India.In the guidelines released on February 19, the CGPDTM agreed with a Parliamentary panel which had observed that computer programmes as such are not intended to be granted patent.

Ringing Bells to import first 50 lakh phones: Govt. official.

Ringing Bells will import the first 50 lakh units of its handset, a government official said following a meeting with the company’s promoter. The firm had earlier claimed that making devices in India would help it sell a smartphone for as little as Rs. 251.

India’s fiscal metrics to remain weaker than peers: Moody’s.

Days ahead of the Union Budget, Moody’s Investors Service said India’s fiscal metrics will remain weaker than its peers in the near term even if Finance Minister Arun Jaitley was to stick to fiscal consolidation roadmap. Mr. Jaitley in his Budget for 2016-17 will reveal if the credit-positive five-year trend of narrowing budget deficits — from 6.5 per cent of GDP in fiscal 2010 to 4.1 per cent in 2014-15 — will continue.