Indian Pharma Connected to Gambia Children’s Deaths is Serial Offender; Praise the PM and Pass the Folidol
UK's Braverman opposes India visa deal, gold shipments to India slashed, CCPA against Patanjali’s ads, monsoon traced over 1,000 years, Meta bans Adityanath worship post on 'nudity' grounds
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Snapshot of the day
October 6, 2022
Sixty-six children have died in the Gambia, and there’s an India connection. WHO has listed four paediatric cough syrups made by Maiden Pharma of Haryana as substandard, containing “unacceptable amounts of diethylene glycol and ethylene glycol as contaminants”. Recall the death of 13 children in Jammu and Kashmir in 2020 due to DEG-contaminated medicines. In such cases, the offending firm’s manufacturing licence is suspended for only a few days. In this case, the drug regulator has not even spoken of the matter. Poor training, antiquated record-keeping systems and understaffing make drug inspectors ill-equipped. Maiden Pharma is a repeat offender and has been called out six times by Kerala and Gujarat for making substandard/adulterated drugs.
56 India millions plunged into poverty in 2020 – that’s the latest from the World Bank’s global poverty in its “Poverty and Shared Prosperity 2022” report. The report cites survey data by the Centre for Monitoring the Indian Economy, as the government has not published its own data since 2011.
The cheetahs have lost their minder. Indian Express reports that Yadavendradev Vikramsinh Jhala, dean of the Wildlife Institute of India is out of the Cheetah Task Force, in which he had headed the technical team since 2010. He had escorted the cheetahs from Namibia and started the process to acclimatise them to Kuno. He was not visible at the release event and was sidelined because “he declined to let cheetahs fly from Gwalior to Kuno in a Chinook chopper… for the extremely high noise stress it would have caused the cats."
More than a week after the US Securities and Exchange Commission accused Oracle Corp. of paying $400,000 in bribes to officials in a public sector company owned by the Indian Rail Ministry, both the Narendra Modi government and its hyperactive investigative agencies are silent. The money was paid between 2016 and 2019. This is deja vu, a virtual replay of the Louis Berger bribery scandal involving top politicians, which has been buried.
UK Home Secretary Suella Braverman has “reservations” about PM Liz Truss’s trade deal with India because it could increase immigration. In an interview with the Spectator, Braverman said Indian migrants are the biggest visa overstayers. The Indian-origin Braverman has blamed the communal clashes in Leicester on uncontrolled immigration and the failure of newcomers to integrate. At the Conservative Party conference, she said “I saw this when I went to Leicester recently. A melting pot of cultures and a beacon of religious harmony. But even there, riots and civil disorder have taken place because of failures to integrate. Such conflict has no place in the UK.”
The Foreign Ministry has not reacted to US ambassador to Pakistan Donald Blome’s visit to Pakistan occupied Kashmir this week. Unlike congresswoman Ilhan Omar’s visit to the region in April, which India strongly objected to, the US envoy’s visit was aimed at restoring Pakistani heritage and cultural sites and highlighting American disaster aid. Blome referred to PoK as AJK (Azad Jammu and Kashmir). “Some have tried to see the US Pakistan relationship through the narrow prism of China or India. But these are inadequate and often misunderstood frameworks,” Blome had said last week.
India is worried about the warm reception given to Pakistan Army Chief Gen Bajwa in Washington just days after Indian Foreign Minister S Jaishankar visited the US, and the $450 million package for a lifetime upgrade of Pakistan’s F-16 fleet. Now, satellite imagery of the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex Kamra shows the deployment of the Pakistan Air Force’s Chengdu J-10C multirole combat aircraft on site. Clearly, the US and China are both in play.
A training team of 41 from the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering on the way down from the Draupadi danda-2 peak has been struck by an avalanche. Ten are dead, 14 have been rescued and about 20 are missing.
Congress president Sonia Gandhi joined the ongoing Bharat Jodo Yatra in Karnataka’s Pandavapura today, her first appearance in a public party event since August 2016.
All the talk about Jio and 5G in border villages got a reality check in Ladakh, near the LAC, from Chushul councillor Konchok Stanzin. He responded to claims of BJP MP Namyang Tsering Namgyal, who inaugurated the Reliance Jio Mobile Tower in Demjok village under Universal Service Obligation Fund, which delivers dedicated 4G internet to the border villages and forces. “Call any of the villagers of Demjok and you will understand whether the network is working or not,” he tweeted. “Just a showpiece in the name of 4G under USOF for border village. On the other side, 5Gs with a 24×7 grid. Digital era!”
Uddhav Thackeray called Eknath Shinde a traitor and dared him to talk about Hindutva without BJP’s help at his Dussehra rally yesterday. The rallies were held in two locations – Shivaji Park and Bandra Kurla Complex in Mumbai, due to the split in the party. Chief Minister Shinde said there was no betrayal, but a “revolt.”
India Inc has raised 29% less via external commercial borrowings ― just $7.669 billion compared with $10.8726 billion last year. Companies are increasingly tapping domestic banks because of rising interest rates in advanced economies and the depreciation of rupee.
Gold-supplying banks have cut shipments to India ahead of major festivals in favour of better margins in China and Turkey, reports Reuters, and India premiums could rise in the peak season. The vaults of ICBC Standard Bank, JPMorgan and Standard Chartered now hold less than 10% of last year’s stock. Gold imports in September fell 30%, while Turkey’s imports soared 543% and China’s jumped nearly 40% to a four-year high.
Registrations of two-wheelers during Ganesh Chaturthi in Maharashtra declined 23% from the FY19 peak. In Kerala, retail sales of two-wheelers during Onam declined 15%, finds Elara Capital. It indicates that rural regions are under stress. First time buyers, who form 80% of the market, are first responders to price shocks. Entry-level cars are struggling, too, because more affluent urbanites have more disposable incomes.
Banks raise loan rates quickly, but not interests on deposits. Between May and August, the average interest rate on new loans and outstanding loans increased by 47 bps and 34 bps. However, term deposit rates grew only 22 bps.
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Chief Justice UU Lalit’s attempt to quickly appoint four judges to the Supreme Court is in jeopardy. Two judges in the Collegium of five have objected to appointments without face-to-face deliberation. A Collegium meeting scheduled before the Dussehra vacation fell through. The court reopens on October 10, but rules prevent the CJI from convening a meeting because he retires less than a month later, on November 8. He must name his successor soon, too.
An inquiry has been ordered into video clips showing Gujarat policemen flogging five persons arrested in a rioting case, in public, as villagers cheered, Director General of Police Ashish Bhatia told Deccan Herald. The men were arrested in Undhela village of Kheda district, allegedly for pelting a Garba venue with stones.
Gandhians are angry about the capture of 102-year-old Gujarat Vidyapeeth, the last Gandhian educational institution in the state. Its governing council has accepted the resignation of the chancellor, veteran Gandhian Elaben Bhatt, and passed a resolution to invite Gujarat Governor Acharya Devvrat as its 12th Chancellor. Activist and Gandhian philosopher Mahesh Panday said while Godse had assassinated the Mahatma, attempts were now being made to ‘saffronize’ the Gandhian ideology and institutions.
Yesterday marked two years of the detention of journalist Siddique Kappan, who was granted bail by the Supreme Court in an anti-terror case last month, but remains behind bars on a money laundering charge. He was arrested for attempting to report on the rape and murder of a Dalit girl in Hathras, UP.
Mid-Day has responded to an SOS from IT workers who were lured by job offers in Thailand and taken by stealth to a location on the Myanmar-Thailand border to slave on cryptocurrency scams. Mostly from Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra, they speak of torture if they can’t scam enough people to meet targets. To leave, they must pay a ransom. Several said that “the government is aware of our ordeal.”
With a bumper sugar production of 35.9 million tonnes in October-September, India has overtaken Brazil to become the top producer.
The Nobel Peace Centre in Norway, which awards the Nobel Peace Prize, yesterday said it will seriously consider the Kerala government’s proposal for convening a World Peace Conference. Nobel Peace Centre Executive Director Kjersti Fløgstad met with Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, who is on a tour of Europe with cabinet colleagues.
Defending its expansion, IPL cricket team Rajasthan Royals told Financial Times that it is prepared to run up losses for “many years” on international ventures. It was responding to the allegation that Twenty20 is weakening the international game.
Ravi paar, spinner Bishan Singh Bedi and his family met Pakistan captain Intikhab Alam at Kartarpur. It was emotional, because Alam sang Louis Armstrong’s rendering of ‘When the Saints go Marching in’, their old-time favourite. A mixie also crossed the border ― a sturdy steel one sought by Alam’s wife, who is tired of the flimsy plastic machines in Pakistan.
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