What is it? The number of men who were arrested on suspicion of plotting a series of attacks across the country on behalf of the ISIS on Wednesday.
Why is it important? The team had reportedly planned bomb blasts in areas such as Charminar, an important government building and markets and malls. This is the third such action on ISIS collaborators since last year; in the first two instances, a total of 43 were arrested. One of the most dangerous terrorist organisations in the world, the ISIS had threatened to send fighters to conduct guerilla attacks in India a couple of months ago.
Tell me more: In the raids, the National Investigation Agency and the local police seized weapons, nitrate-based explosives, 40 mobile phones, a laptop, a pen drive, 32 sim cards and Rs 15 lakh in cash.
Rs 1.02 trillion
What is it? The amount that would be given as pay and pension increases to 10 million central government employees and pensioners after the Cabinet approved the Seventh Pay Commission on Wednesday.
Why is it important? This, along with the implementation of the One Rank One Pension scheme for ex-servicemen, is likely to boost savings and stimulate urban spending, especially in sectors such as automobiles, consumer durables and fast-moving consumer goods. The cumulative impact is estimated to be 0.63% of the GDP, according to Fitch’s India Ratings and Research chief economist. However, this may have an upward impact on inflation – retail inflation hit a 21-month high in May driven by food prices.
Tell me more: A report by the State Bank of India says this may impact the country’s fiscal deficit target in 2017-18. The employees and the pensioners would receive the hikes along with their August salaries and be paid with effect from January 1, 2016. The government will pay Rs 12,133 crore in arrears in the current financial year itself.
What is it? The share of monthly personal budget for consumer durables that’s spent on vehicles in India for domestic (as against enterprise) use, according to the latest government data.
Why is it important? Underlines the importance of automobiles and car ownership for urban and rural consumers, and therefore for the car companies, in India. Vehicles command the highest share even for enterprise use in both the urban and rural areas, accounting for an average of 80% of the monthly per capita expenditure.
Tell me more: The second highest expenditure was on jewellery across rural and urban India. Other items that Indians like to spend on are mobile phones, laptops, tablets, air-conditioners, geysers and coolers. In terms of services (excludes health and education), Indians spend the most on eating out followed by travelling.
150 – 200
What is it? The number of employees grocery-delivery startup Grofers has laid off. It’s about 10% of its total employees.
Why is it important? With this, Grofers joins a list of other hyperlocal startups such as Peppertap, Localbanya, Townrush, which have either downsized or shut down their operations earlier. Unicorns such as Flipkart and Paytm had tried their hand in this segment but pulled back, indicating that the business model for such hyperlocal startups has been tough to establish and sustain.
Tell me more: Grofers, which has raised about $165 million so far from investors such as Softbank, Tiger Global and Sequoia Capital, also revoked offers given to 67 students who were to join the startup in July. In January, Grofers had announced shutting down operations in nine cities and only four months before that, had expanded to 27 cities.
What is it? The average airfare to travel from Delhi to Chennai between June 29 and July 4 when booked on June 28, according to an analysis by Yatra.com for ET. Last year, the average airfare for the same route in the corresponding period was Rs 6,218.
Why is it important? Last minute booking is proving to be cheaper by up to 52% on various routes this year when compared to 2015. A 20% year-on-year decline in oil prices and an increase of 7-8% in passenger capacity are being attributed for the drop in fares, according to Yatra.com. The discounting could also be to achieve high passenger load factors.
Tell me more: In recent times, airlines, especially budget carriers, were seen decreasing air ticket prices but hiked cancellation charges by 50-100%.