Manning Assange’s extradition


What is it? The share of the 85,000 H1-B visas issued by the US each year that go to Indian companies.

Why is it important? The number (amounting to 14,450 visas) put out by the Information Technology Secretary Aruna Sundararajan aims to put into perspective the argument that Indian companies corner most of these visas, drawing criticism from the US administration.

Tell me more: Concerns over visa restrictions have turned the focus on local hirings by Indian companies. It has also highlighted how automation will be claiming jobs in the future. Some point out paring down of the IT workforce has been happening for sometime, but is only being noticed now after the visa hurdles.


Rs 30,000 crore

What is it? The value of social sector subsidies — like concessional fare to certain passenger profiles, discounts for certain categories of goods and uneconomic branch lines–the Indian Railways (IR) is looking to scrap.

Why is it important? The IR has been looking to improve its profitability, including turning to a more corporate form of functioning, on the Niti Aayog’s recommendation. Doing away with social sector subsidies would mean ministries offering those schemes/benefits would have to shoulder the cost.

Tell me more: The operating ratio of IR (amount spent to earn a unit of revenue) rose to 94.9% in FY17, against its stated benchmark of 80%. It also saw freight revenues, which account for three-fifths of its revenues, grow the slowest since 2010-11.



What is it? The number of documents, videos, diplomatic correspondence and military information that Chelsea Manning, who was freed from a US prison on Wednesday, had furnished WikiLeaks with.

Why is it important? Freed after seven years in prison, following a presidential pardon by previous US president Barack Obama, Manning’s freedom has become dovetailed with the future of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. Earlier this year, Assange said he would let himself be extradited to the US if Manning was released.

Tell me more: Out of the 35,944 appeals placed before Obama, Manning’s was one of the 3.7% petitions that were granted clemency.



What is it? The number of jobs that automobile major Ford Motor is cutting in North America and Asia.

Why is it important? The count is around 10% of Ford’s managerial and non-production staff, and is geared to reduce costs by 10%. One of the oldest car companies is looking to shore up its financials and boost investor confidence as the auto market moves towards ride-sharing.

Tell me more: In 2016, Ford cut white-collar jobs in Europe, saving $200 million annually. This April, Ford saw its US sales fall 7.2% on a year-on-year basis, a trajectory that was also mirrored by General Motors, Toyota and Nissan.


7,000 MW

What is it? The addition to the installed capacity of nuclear power the Indian government cleared on Wednesday.

Why is it important? If this new capacity comes up, it will double the installed capacity of nuclear power in India. At present, nuclear power, which has been a contentious source of power, accounts for 2% of the installed capacity in power generation in India.

Tell me more: In 2016, there were 13 countries, led by France and Slovakia, that drew at least 25% of their energy from nuclear power.

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