Videocon in defaulters club

Rs 520 crore

What is it? Amount of loan given to Videocon that Dena Bank has classified as a non-performing asset.

Why is it important? Videocon owes more than Rs 22,000 crore to domestic financial institutions, and an equivalent amount to international banks. The diversified conglomerate has asked Dena bank to extend tenure of the loan. This move by Dena bank has eroded market capitalisation of Videocon by a third in last two days of trading.

Tell me more: Bad debts is Rs7.7 trillion problem for Indian banks, and the last Economic Survey says 57 out of the top 100 stressed debtors would require debt reductions of 75% or more.

 

129

What is it? The number of non-performing government officers forced to seek early retirement after a review.

Why is it important? Periodical review of performance and weeding out of non-performers is expected to improve productivity of government officers. This dismissal of Group A and B officers follows January’s compulsory retirement for two IPS officers on the same grounds. But 2017 is not the first year when the government has meted out punishments to bureaucrats for under-performance.

Tell me more: The officers were picked after a review of the records of 24,000 Group A and 42,251 Group B officers. Reviews of 34,451 Group A and over 42,000 Group B officers are imminent.

 

Zero

What is it? The number of members in the National Commission for Minorities (NCM), after the last member retired in March 9 this year.

Why is it important? NCM has served as a forum of appeal for minorities and the delay in appointing the chairperson, vice chairperson and seven members have rendered this statutory body non-functional.

Tell me more: Delhi High Court, on May 20th, has asked the central government to reply why appointments haven’t been made to NCM.

 

33%

What is it? A proposal under consideration by Law Commission to limit the incarceration of undertrials to one-third of the maximum punishment for offences that attract up to seven years of imprisonment.

Why is it important? If accepted, it will bring relief to undertrials who are unable to execute bail conditions or afford lawyers because of their poor economic conditions. There are 2.82 lakh prisoners who are undertrials. At present, undertrials are eligible to get released only after serving half the term of the maximum punishment.

Tell me more: For offences that attract imprisonment more than seven years, undertrials to be released after serving half the time.

 

24

What is it? The number of people killed when their bus, full of pilgrims on the Char Dham route, fell into a gorge in Uttarakhand.

Why is it important? This adds to the death toll of pilgrims in this season of the Char Dham pilgrimage in the Himalayas and foothills, whose routes opened in April. While 13 died of a natural calamity — a massive landslide — last week, many others have died of preventable causes. Since April, 16 have died from cardiac arrest, reportedly due to the lack of medical aid. Yesterday’s accident could have been avoided with adequate road safety measures in a route that turns busy in these months.

Tell me more: Officials have now been asked to identify dangerous areas on the pilgrimage routes to set up speed monitors, warnings and crash barriers.

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The giant sucking sound of jobs going away 👷

56,000

What is it? The number of layoffs expected in seven IT firms this year in India.

Why is it important? The retrenchment pressure at IT firms including Infosys, Wipro, and multinational firms, is likely to mount, as they look to hire local employees in markets such as the US. Automation and a digital service economy have further removed the need for human labour.

Tell me more: Other companies include Tech Mahindra, HCL Technologies, Cognizant, CapGemini, who together will be letting go of 4.5% of their 1.24 million-strong workforce.

 

$1 billion

What is it? The value of the informal offer from Flipkart to buy rival Snapdeal, currently backed by SoftBank and others.

Why is it important? It shows the sale of Snapdeal, which has been creating a buzz for a few months now, is close to completion. The newsof the informal purchase offer came a few hours after the news of Snapdeal’s chief investor, SoftBank, agreeing to pay off other key investors — its two founders and Nexus. SoftBank has been trying to sell Snapdeal to India’s largest e-commerce platform, Flipkart, but was slowed down by the need to compensate other investors such as Kalaari Capital, Nexus Ventures besides the founders.

Tell me more: SoftBank has agreed to pay $15 million each to founders, Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal, and $50-60 million to Nexus, according to reports.

 

Rs 574 crore

What is it? The value of fixed deposits of the Maharashtra Chief Minister’s Relief Fund.

Why is it important? The aid given from the fund in the last five years to 22,633 people is Rs 242.53, around 42% of the value of the fund’s fixed deposits. The FDs also earn Rs 41.63 crore in interest, reveals an RTI query. With monsoon predictions still hanging in the balance, a drought would see farmers seeking aid from funds such as these.

Tell me more: The biggest beneficiaries have been people in need of medical aid and account for 97% of recipients between June, 2012 and March, 2017.

 

9.1 million

What is it? The number of additional tax payers in India in 2016-17.

Why is it important? The rise in the number of taxpayers might be the single largest benefit of demonetisation, even as the November move attracted criticism that many of its stated goals – removing fake currency, unearthing black money, boosting cashless economy – didn’t fructify.

Tell me more: India had 55.9 million individual taxpayers in 2015-16, of whom 37 million filed tax returns.

 

Rs 43,292 crore

What is it? The cost of project to connect Char Dham – four key pilgrim sites, Gangotri, Yamunotri, Badrinath and Kedarnath – by rail.

Why is it important? Indian railways will start the final location survey for the project this week. The total route length will be 327 km passing through 61 tunnels and going over 59 bridges according to a report submitted in 2015. The commencement of the location survey is one of the key steps in the ambitious project.

Tell me more: The route will run through some of the toughest terrains with key spots at different elevations – Gangotri (3,408 metre above sea level), Yamunotri (3,293m), Badrinath (3,133m) and Kedarnath (3,583m).

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