News in Numbers, Aug 18, 2016: Ola shuts down TaxiForSure, India’s first medal at Rio…

Sakshi Malik creates history at the Rio Olympics 2016. She won the bronze medal in the 58 kg women’s freestyle wrestling category on Wednesday. With this, India gets its 25th medal at the Olympic Games. It first participated in the Games in 1900.

Read more about Malik’s win and the firsts that have come along with her victory. This, and four other numbers, make up today’s edition.

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7001,000

What is it? The number of jobs cab-hailing aggregator Ola will lay off as a result of shutting down TaxiForSure (TFS) it acquired 18 months ago.

Why is it important? The layoffs can cut costs by nearly Rs 30 crore a month, according to reports. Ola has been trying to raise funds and battle with cash-rich Uber, which can now devote more time and resources to India after having sold its China operations to Didi Chuxing. Over the last few months, Ola was said to be integrating some of TFS teams such as human resources and tech while keeping the drivers and call centre teams separate.

Tell me more: Ola had acquired TFS for $200 million last year to fend off competition and up its strength against Uber. It had initially said it would manage TFS as a separate brand. Nearly 90% of the employees being laid off belong to operations such as call centres, driver relations and business development units.

 

730 million

What is it? The estimated number of Internet users in India by 2020, according to a report.

Why is it important? Three-fourth of the new user growth is expected to be from rural areas and a similar percentage of people is expected to consume data in local languages. These estimates, if true, is a pointer for the government and businesses to focus their digital initiatives or expansions more towards the countryside and also, will help provide opportunities for those in the rural areas. There were 350 million Internet users at the end of 2015.

Tell me more: The report by Nasscom in association with Akamai Technologies also predicts that online shopping would account for two-thirds of the e-commerce market by 2020 (with fashion and lifestyle to overtake the consumer electronics segment) and half of the travel transactions would be done online.

 

4

What is it? The number of Indian women athletes who have clinched a medal at the Olympics with the latest being Sakshi Malik who won a bronze in the 58 kg women’s freestyle wrestling category on Wednesday.

Why is it important? She is the first woman wrestler from India to have won a medal at the Olympics and overall, hers is the country’s fifth wrestling medal. Malik’s win also ended India’s 11-day wait to win a medal at the Rio Olympics 2016. In all, India has now won 25 medals at the Olympic Games over the years.

Tell me more: The other Indian women athletes to have won a medal are: weightlifter Karnam Malleshwari in 2000, boxer MC Mary Kom and shuttler Saina Nehwal in 2012.

 

Rs 4,566.6 crore

What is it? The total amount pharmaceutical companies owe the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) for charging higher prices than those prescribed by the government.

Why is it important? Over 80% of the amount is under litigation and just around 8% of the total amount demanded (for overcharging) has been recovered by the NPPA so far (since August 1997). This highlights the difficulty of price control, and the need for better methods to ensure pharma companies follow regulations.

Tell me more: The prices of essential medicines are fixed by the NPPA from time to time and the manufacturers who are found to be overcharging are to pay the overcharged amount along with interest under the Drugs (Price Control) Order, 2013.

 

1.96 crore

What is it? The number of private vehicles registered in 2015. That’s nearly 53,720 per day.

Why is it important? It touched an all-time high last year and is a huge jump from over two decades ago (less than 10 lakh until 1993). With an increase in population and disposable incomes and inefficient public transport systems, this trend is likely to continue. Underlines the importance of devising strategies for infrastructure and public transport to avoid further congestion in the urban areas.

Tell me more: Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Karnataka top the charts in terms of vehicle registrations, which together account for nearly a third of the total private vehicle registrations in the country.

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News in Numbers, July 28, 2016: India’s first transshipment port, gender pay gap a reality…

Rs 1,600 crore

What is it? The grant the Indian government will give Adani Group to help build the country’s first transshipment port at Vizhinjam in Kerala.

Why is it important? The government hopes to get business from established hubs in other Asian regions by competing with China and other major countries. The lack of a domestic transshipment port in India forces inbound and outbound containers to take diversion to other regional hubs such as Dubai, Singapore and Sri Lanka and by building one, it would help companies save on transport costs besides countering China’s growing influence in South Asia.

Tell me more: Once this port begins operations, the government plans to build another port for Rs 27,200 crore at Enayam in Tamil Nadu, which has the potential to save more than $200 million for Indian companies per year.

 

4

What is it? The number of states – Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and Puducherry – that are likely to join the government’s scheme called UDAY, which is aimed at financial turnaround and revival of power distribution companies.

Why is it important? Indicates that the scheme, which was launched last November, has met with a fair amount of success. Manipur became the first north-eastern state and the 14th one in India to sign up for this deal on Tuesday. The cumulative benefits for Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Telangana would be Rs 11,500 crore, Rs 18,600 crore and Rs 6,000 crore respectively, in the first three years after the implementation of the scheme.

Tell me more: After three years of the implementation of UDAY in these states, the benefits could go up to Rs 14,500 crore for Madhya Pradesh, Rs 22,420 crore for Tamil Nadu, Rs 6,100 crore for Telangana and Rs 440 crore for Puducherry per annum.

 

12

What is it? The number of people convicted by an MCOCA (Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act) court in the 2006 Aurangabad arms haul case.

Why is it important? Among those convicted includes Abu Jundal, a key Lashkar-e-Toiba operative and the plotter of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks. In May 2006, a Maharashtra anti-terrorist squad caught three terror suspects and seized 30 kg RDX, 10 AK-47 rifles and 3,200 bullets from them. The court accepted the prosecution’s case that the aim of the accused was to create terror in the minds of the people and also, eliminate the then chief minister of Gujarat Narendra Modi and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Pravin Togadia.

Tell me more: The 2006 Aurangabad arms hauls case was where 22 people were accused of procuring arms and explosives to allegedly target political leaders accused of, in the 2002 Gujarat riots. Of the 22, eight have been acquitted, one fled during the trial and a separate trial will be conducted for another who turned approver.

 

Rs 4,988 crore

What is it? The amount consumers saved due to drug price regulatory measures in the last two years, according to the government.

Why is it important? Since 2013, the government has capped the prices of essential medicines thrice. The government is also considering making the voluntary uniform code for Pharma Marketing Practices compulsory so that cheap generic medicines can be promoted instead of the expensive branded ones. It also also working on opening 3,000 Jan Aushadhi outlets to sell quality drugs at affordable prices and over 500 medicines will be covered under the scheme.

Tell me more: The National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) had initially brought 530 essential medicines under price control, which helped consumers save Rs 2,422 crore. Another 404 drugs were included in the list, where the savings totalled to Rs 2,216 crore. Besides this, the NPPA had fixed the prices of 106 drugs under public interest provision, which helped them save Rs 350 crore in two years.

 

Rs 69.3

What is it? The difference between median hourly wage for men and women across eight sectors in the first nine months of 2015, according to a report by recruitment portal Monster India.

Why is it important? This highlights the huge gender pay gap among Indian companies. However, there is a small silver lining. The median hourly wage of women has marginally increased from Rs 210.4 in 2013 to Rs 219.4 in the first nine months of 2015 while that of men has remained constant at Rs 288.7.

Tell me more: The sample size for this analysis consists of over 31,000 respondents, of which 86.5% are men and excludes those who are self-employed. The eight sectors included in the report are legal and market consultancy, business activities; Information and Communication Technology; healthcare, caring services, social work; education and research; financial services, banking and insurance; transport, logistics and communication; construction and technical consultancy; and manufacturing.

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