The Case Of Fleeing Willful Defaulters


What is it? The number of months within which the government aims to achieve “tangible results” from its recently launched ‘LaQshya’ programme, which aims to improve the quality of care in labour rooms and maternity operation theatres.

Why is it important? India has a high maternal mortality rate: 167 maternal deaths occur for every 100,000 births. Obstetric violence is prevalent with to-be-mothers facing problems such as verbal abuse and discrimination, denial of pain relief to avoid prolonged birth and use of invasive procedures without their knowledge or permission.

Tell me more: A recent study conducted in five states in 11 public and five private hospitals listed seven types of abuse that women seeking maternal care face, such as neglect or denial of care, non-consented care, physical abuse and non-confidential care.



What is it? The fine that Elizabeth Holmes, founder of Theranos, will pay the US market regulator to close a case in which she and her company were accused of making false claims while raising $700 million from private investors.

Why is it important? It competes the fall from grace of one of the most visible voices in Silicon Valley of moonshot entrepreneurship and casts a harsh light on the hype in startup investing. Holmes pitched Theranos as a revolutionary blood-testing process, but it was later revealed the company could service only 12 of the 200 tests it claimed. Theranos has, so far, raised $1.4 billion from investors and raised funds in 2014 at a valuation of $9 billion.

Tell me more: Holmes and Theranos neither denied nor admitted the charges. In addition to the fine, Holmes will have to relinquish her shares acquired during this period of dispute and all her voting shares, and is barred from holding an executive position or serving as a director in a listed company for 10 years.



What is it? The number of individuals the Indian government is reportedly planning to prevent from leaving India.

Why is it important? These individuals are directors or owners of companies that have been identified as wilful defaulters, which have defaulted on loans despite having the capacity to repay. A total of 31 top defaulters have already fled the country to avoid prosecution, including Vijay Mallya and Nirav Modi. As of December 2017, lenders had filed suits against 8,598 wilful defaulters to recover loans worth Rs 1,07,221 crore.

Tell me more: Earlier this month, the Union Cabinet approved the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill 2017 to seize the assets of loan defaulters and financial offenders who flee the country to escape prosecution in cases that have claims of Rs 100 crore or more.



What is it? The number of members required to support the motion of no-confidence moved by YSR Congress against the BJP-led NDA government. It has asked the Lok Sabha secretariat to include it in today’s list of business.

Why is it important? If accepted, this would be the first no-confidence motion against the government. This comes as the Centre has refused to grant special category status to Andhra Pradesh. YSR Congress has nine MPs in the Lok Sabha. The motion, if accepted, is likely to be defeated as BJP has 274 members and 56 members from allies in the 536-member Lower House.

Tell me more: The Telugu Desam Party, which pulled out its ministers in the Central government a week ago, is reportedly going to back the motion and likely to pull out of the NDA alliance today.


41 years

What is it? The age that Valentino Rossi, seven-time MotoGP world champion, will be if he sees out the two-year contract extension he signed with Yamaha yesterday.

Why is it important? It’s a testament to the charismatic Italian’s longevity as a premier racer. Rossi first drove in MotoGP in 2000, finishing second. The following year, he won his first title. Rossi said he was still motivated to compete at the highest level and wanted to avoid a situation like Michael Schumacher’s, who walked from Formula 1 in his prime only to make a difficult comeback a couple of years later.

Tell me more: Rossi last won the world championship in 2009. Last year, he finished fifth, with 1 race win, in which he became the oldest man to win a race in MotoGP.


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