Supply Hit, Prices Soar


What is it? The number of farmer outfits that are participating in a 10-day agitation led by Rashtriya Kisan Mahasangh, which entered the third day on Sunday.

Why is it important? The nationwide stir has resulted in an increase in the prices of perishables such as milk and vegetables in some cities of Punjab, Haryana and Madhya Pradesh. In Maharashtra, the All India Kisan Sabha has threatened to stop the supply of vegetables and milk from June 7 if their demands such as a complete farm loan waiver, minimum support price for their produce and the implementation of the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission, are not met.

Tell me more:The agrarian crisis is also snowballing into a bigger challenge for the ruling BJP, which is seeking a second term at the Centre. Congress President Rahul Gandhi has said he will participate in a protest at Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh, where six farmers were allegedly killed in police firing last year, on Wednesday.


What is it? The number of firms that have resigned as auditors of companies mid-term so far this year.

Why is it important? This is already over four times such resignations in the whole of 2017, indicating that auditors are reacting to the stricter regulatory environment that involves a modified Companies (Amendment) Act, 2017. One of the main changes to this law includes the proposed setting up of National Financial Reporting Authority as an independent regulator for the auditing profession. The entity has powers to investigate matters of professional misconduct by chartered accountants or CA firms, prohibit them for a period of up to 10 years and impose penalty.

Tell me more: Recently, Deloitte and Price Waterhouse Chartered Accountants resigned as the auditors of Manpasand Beverages and infrastructure firm Atlanta saying they refused to divulge some key information.


What is it? The number of parties– Congress, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Gondwana Ganatantra Party – that have reportedly formed an alliance ahead of the upcoming polls in Madhya Pradesh.

Why is it important? Congress is looking to replicate its Karnataka success where it recently formed the government with JD(S). Mayawati’s BSP has been steadily polling 7% of votes in the last two decades in Madhya Pradesh and with Congress’ nearly 37% vote share in the last state elections, it can be a formidable force against the BJP where it polled 45% and faces an anti-incumbency wave after being in power for three terms.

Tell me more: Congress is also looking to stitch a wider alliance with BSP in Rajasthan and Haryana where the latter has been getting 5% and 4% in vote share respectively.


What is it? The percentage of women, who are detected with early stage breast cancer, that need not undergo chemotherapy.

Why is it important?An existing genetic testing, which measures activity levels of 21 genes to understand how aggressive cancer is, is enough to determine whether chemotherapy is needed or not. At present, women receiving low score (less than 10) are not given chemotherapy and those with high scores (above 26) are told to undergo chemotherapy. Those with intermediate scores were also given the aggressive treatment. The research study found survival rates for those intermediate score were same for those who had chemotherapy and those who didn’t.

Tell me more:Early stage cancers are the ones which haven’t spread to the lymph nodes and does not have the HER2 mutation, an indicator of whether the cancer will grow aggressive or not.

Rs24,000 crore 

What is it? Cash deposited by 73,000 deregistered companies, after demonetisation was announced in November 2017.

Why is it important? The cash deposit is being investigated for potential black money link by the Serious Fraud Investigation Office and the Registrars of Companies. If proven that these companies have helped to convert illegal money or acted as conduit to avoid taxes, it will bolster government’s effort to curb black money in Asia’s third largest economy.

Tell me more:Two months prior to demonetisation announcement, the government deregistered more than 200,000 companies for failing to file regular returns with Ministry of Corporate Affairs.

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Soured Loans, Shrinking Profits

Rs 1,650 crore

What is it? The net profit of ICICI Bank in the October-December 2017 quarter, a drop of 32.4% from Rs 2,441 crore in the same period a year ago.

Why is it important? This is the lowest net profit posted by India’s second-largest private bank in seven quarters, as provisions for soured loans grew on an annual basis and it reported lower treasury income. However, gross additions to bad loans was Rs 4,380 crore, the lowest in nine quarters. According to the bank’s MD and CEO Chanda Kochhar, provisions against bad loans are likely to remain at higher levels in the next quarter as well owing to stressed accounts undergoing insolvency proceedings and ageing bad loans.

Tell me more: ICICI Bank said it has an exposure of Rs 10,061 crore to the 18 accounts that feature in the Reserve Bank of India’s second list of stressed assets that may go to bankruptcy court.


Rs 4

What is it? The revised transaction charge to port a mobile number from one telecom operator to another, according to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).

Why is it important? This has been slashed from Rs 19 earlier. The telecom regulator cited an increase in the volume of mobile number portability (MNP) requests and a substantial reduction in the cost of operations of MNP service providers for this decision. There has been a huge upsurge in the volume of porting requests since June 3, 2015, when MNP was allowed across India. Cumulative MNP requests stood at 331 million in November 2017, against 315 million in October 2017.

Tell me more: The total number of active wireless subscribers in November 2017 was 1.006 billion.


Rs 3,500 crore

What is it? The amount the Delhi High Court on Wednesday allowed Daiichi Sankyo to recover from former Ranbaxy Laboratories promoters Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh.

Why is it important? This refers to an arbitration award that the Japanese drugmaker had won against the Singh brothers in the Singapore Tribunal in 2016, which the Delhi Court said is enforceable in India. Daiichi had argued that the brothers had concealed important information while selling Ranbaxy in 2008. Daiichi will file an application with the court for the execution of the award where it would seek for the sale of shares and assets held by firms controlled by the brothers, which include Fortis Healthcare and Religare Enterprises. The Singh brothers can appeal in the Supreme Court.

Tell me more: The single-judge bench of Justice Jayant Nath of the Delhi High Court said Daiichi can claim the amount from the Singh brothers and their companies, but not from their children, which is seen as a “partial success” by the brothers.



What is it? The survival rate among Indian women diagnosed with breast cancer between 2010 and 2014, according to a study released by medical journal Lancet on Wednesday.

Why is it important? Breast cancer is the most common cancer among Indian women. While the latest released survival rate is an improvement over the 59.1% for 2005 to 2009, it is markedly lower than the survival rates in developed countries: for example, the survival rate for breast cancer was 85.6% in the UK and 89.5% in Australia in the latest period of study.

Tell me more: The Lancer study says that “survival trends are generally increasing, even for some of the more lethal cancers: in some countries, survival has increased by up to 5% for cancers of the liver, pancreas, and lung”.


Rs 220 crore

What is it? The reported worldwide theatre collections of Padmaavat, the Sanjay Leela Bhansali film, in the first week of its release.

Why is it important? The film faced a mountain of problems, with Rajput outfits protesting against its release, some of which even turned violent. The film has not been screened in four BJP-ruled states, with members of the Multiplex Association of India deciding to do so despite a Supreme Court ruling that prohibits states from banning a film. Despite these odds, the film, which reportedly had a budget of Rs 180 crore, has collected Rs 143 crore in India and Rs 76 crore overseas.

Tell me more: Padmaavat is Bhansali’s third film to top Rs 100 crore, the other two being Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela and Bajirao Mastani, which also featured Deepika Padukone and Ranveer Singh in lead roles.

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