What is it? The number of years when A M Naik headed Larsen & Toubro Ltd (L&T), a diversified conglomerate.
Why is it important? L&T doesn’t have a controlling promoter group and is largely run by A M Naik, who played a key role in decision making both in the board and in operational role. Naik will quit as executive chairman this year, and a new CEO will take over the reins of the Rs 1.1 lakh crore conglomerate.
Tell me more: Naik will receive Rs 38 crore as retirement benefits, mostly in the form of leave encashment, for his 52-year stint at L&T. In 18 years when Naik was at the helm, L&T’s fought off one takeover battle with Aditya Birla group, but lost the cement business in the process.
What is it? The number of Islamic countries that have banned triple ‘talaq’ (divorce) – the practice by which a Muslim man can end his marriage by saying the word ‘talaq’ thrice.
Why is it important? India joins these nations in banning this practice as the Supreme Court on Tuesday declared this to be unconstitutional. According to a survey of 4,710 Muslim women across 10 states by the Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan, over 90% wanted a ban on oral and unilateral ‘talaq’ and rejected polygamy. Divorce rate of Muslim women is twice the national average, but divorce rate for Muslim men is close to national average, according to Census 2011, which means that Muslim men tend to remarry far more quickly than the Muslim women.
Tell me more: Though many Muslim women have been campaigning for a ban on this practice, it gathered momentum when 35-year-old Shayara Bano, a mother of two, filed a petition in the Supreme Court in February 2016 challenging her divorce on the grounds that her fundamental rights had been violated. This was followed by similar writs in the apex court after which a multi-faith bench of five judges was set up to decide on the 1,400-year-old practice.
What is it? The cost of a full vaccination course of Pfizer’s vaccine, which protects children and adults from 13 types of pneumococcal bacteria, on the Indian market.
Why is it important? India granted Pfizer Inc a patent for its pneumonia vaccine Prevenar 13, which it can sell exclusively in the country until 2026. Other drug manufacturers cannot make cheaper copies of it and sell, which could mean the treatment could be out of reach for the poorer people. India is home to the largest number of pneumonia cases in the world. According to a report, pneumonia caused 175,000 child deaths in 2013 in India. This could affect other poorer countries that rely on India’s drug industry to provide cheaper copies of medicines and vaccines.
Tell me more: Under India’s national immunisation programme, this vaccine was introduced this year but since it is being done in phases, only about 2.1 million people of the 25 million people eligible would get it this year.
What is it? The number of AIADMK state legislators who withdrew support to the government headed by Edappadi K. Palaniswami.
Why is it important? This means the ruling AIADMK is two votes short of majority in the 233-member state assembly. AIADMK won 134 seats and without the support of these 19 state legislators, the party’s strength is reduced to 115 as against a simple majority of 117.
Tell me more: These 19 state legislators owe their loyalty to TTV Dinakaran, nephew of Sasikala, who took over the party but is now spending time in a Bangalore prison after being convicted of corruption. Two factions of AIADMK came together two days back, and they expelled Sasikala as head of the party.
What is it? Samsung’s global smartphone sales in the April-June quarter this year, according to American research and advisory firm Gartner.
Why is it important? The South Korean multinational firm was able to increase its global sales by 7.5% from the corresponding quarter a year ago and maintain its market share, after three straight quarterly declines. Though it was hurt by the problems with its Galaxy Note 7 product, its Galaxy S8 and S8+ were able to help increase demand for its smartphones. While Apple saw its market share slip to 12.1% in the April-June quarter from 12.9% a year ago, Chinese brands – Huawei, Oppo and Vivo – increased their market share to nearly a quarter (23.5%) in the latest quarter.
Tell me more: The global smartphone sales registered an increase of 6.7% on a yearly basis to 366.2 million units in the second quarter of calendar year 2017.