Tamil Nadu Second Only To UP In Anti-Christian Hate Crimes; Sitharaman’s Excuse Will Offer No Comfort As US Fed Continues Rate Hikes
China party congress opened with Galwan propaganda, Rs 1.76 lakh crore FPI bailed out of India in 2022, Bharat Jodo Yatra challenges the silencing of India, domestic AK-203 rifle production to begin
A newsletter from The Wire & Galileo Ideas | Contributors: MK Venu, Seema Chishti, Siddharth Varadarajan, Sidharth Bhatia, Sushant Singh and Tanweer Alam | Editor: Pratik Kanjilal
Snapshot of the day
October 18, 2022
It’s open season for South Asia at the Bookers. After Geetanjali Shree and Daisy Rockwell’s win for Tomb of Sand, Shehan Karunatilaka’s The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida, a political satire on an ethnic conflict that gives fiction fierce competition, has won the Booker.
Umar Khalid has been summarily denied bail by the Delhi High Court in the Delhi riots ‘larger conspiracy’ case. He is an accused along with the Pinjra Tod members Devangana Kalita and Natasha Narwal, Jamia Millia Islamia student Asif Iqbal Tanha and student activist Gulfisha Fatima.
Breaking an old psychological barrier, textbooks for medicine, nursing and pharmacy will be available in translation in all major Indian languages within three years. Instruction in English will remain. It’s an important project if it successfully ventures beyond Hindi, but why are students thanking Amit Shah for it?
The Gujarat government has reduced VAT on CNG and piped natural gas (PNG) by 10%, state Education Minister Jitu Vaghani said. He also said that two cylinders would be given for free every year (would his boss PM Modi count that as a freebie?). These announcements come weeks before Modi’s home state votes for a new government. Poll dates should have been announced on Saturday but the Election Commission only confirmed dates for Himachal Pradesh. Just for a little pre-poll gas. Is that fair? The track record of the EC since 2014 is questionable, as Seema Chishti wrote.
Amid rising retail food inflation, the government claims that the price rise in wheat and rice has been “normal” and it will intervene in the market only if there is an abnormal increase. Since 2020, wholesale wheat prices have risen 11.42% at Rs 2,757 per quintal and retail prices by 12.01% at Rs 31.06 per kg as on 14 October. The government’s claim is in contrast with the recently released Food Corporation of India report.
India’s foreign exchange reserves at $532.9 billion as on October 7, 2022 were equivalent to 8.7 months of imports projected for 2022-23, according to RBI’s latest monthly bulletin. At the end of December 2021, forex reserves cover of imports (on balance of payments basis) declined to 13.1 months from 14.6 months at end-September 2021.
The flow of money into NRI deposits dwindled to $1.43 billion in April-August 2022, from $2.44 billion in April-August 2021. Outstanding NRI deposits declined to $134.68 billion at the end of August, from $141.52 billion a year ago. NRI deposits also shrank from $139.02 billion in March 2022 to 135.39 billion in July 2022, according to RBI data.
Pakistan has sent a two-member team for a meeting of national coordinators of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) which began in New Delhi yesterday, to discuss the agenda for next year’s summit, to be hosted by India. India took over the SCO presidency following the nine-member bloc’s summit at Samarkand in Uzbekistan last month. The level of China’s participation is not clear.
The Director General of Russia’s Rosoboronexport has said Kalashnikov AK-203 assault rifles will be produced in India by year-end. In 2019, India and Russia had signed an intergovernmental agreement to set up Indo-Russian Rifles Pvt Ltd, a joint venture to manufacture AK-203s, the advanced version of the Kalashnikov family, the first of which was the workhorse AK-47.
India’s shipments to sanctions-hit Russia could grow $5 billion once the rupee settlement mechanism becomes functional, according to the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO). Their study shows that farm products, food, drugs and engineering equipment are key exports to Russia, with EU supplies nearly halted. Currently, exports to Russia are being settled in euros. Exports to Moscow saw a 24% decline in the April to August period to $992 million.
Soutik Biswas of the BBC looks at why drugs made in India are sparking safety concerns globally.
The President has appointed Justice DY Chandrachud as the next Chief Justice of India on November 9. He will hold office till November 10, 2024. He is the son of Justice YV Chandrachud, the longest-serving CJI, in office for seven years and four months in 1978-1985. This is the first instance of father and son serving as Chief Justice of India.
Rahul Gandhi yesterday said the Bharat Jodo Yatra had challenged the assumption that India would silently surrender after they had captured key institutions. “They think, ‘Once we have captured (key institutions), India will fall silent’. This is their misconception. India will not fall silent, it will fight back,” he said in Andhra Pradesh.
Nine trustees of Gujarat Vidyapith have resigned because the Governor will be Chancellor of the formerly independent Gandhian university. In a joint statement, they said that the appointment of non-Gandhian Acharya Devvrat “was rushed through, not by consensus but by a badly fractured vote”, adding that “Gandhi’s philosophy cannot be reduced to mere natural farming, cattle breeding or nature cure”.
Nokia, once a synonym for cell phones in India and then suddenly out of the picture, has resurfaced. The Finnish company said yesterday that it has won a multi-year deal from Reliance Jio to build one of the world’s biggest 5G networks. Nokia will supply infrastructure hardware.
The country has more than 24 lakh registered companies but only 62% were active at the end of September, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs said in its information bulletin.
The government yesterday suspended with immediate effect senior IAS officer and former chief secretary of Andaman and Nicobar Islands Jitendra Narain, accused of raping a woman in Port Blair while in office.
Kerala won both the men and women’s volleyball gold medals on the concluding day of the 36th National Games last Wednesday. It took the men’s title from Tamil Nadu and overcame a stiff challenge from West Bengal in the women’s event to retain the title it won seven years ago. The journey of the Kerala teams involved not just training but court visits, too.
Bangladesh denied a Bollywood actor permission to perform at an event in Dhaka to save foreign exchange. Nora Fatehi wasn’t granted permission “in view of the global situation and with the aim of maintaining foreign exchange reserves,” according to Bangladesh’s Ministry of Cultural Affairs. Bangladesh’s forex reserves had slipped to $36.33 billion on October 12 — enough to cover four months of imports — from $46.13 billion a year earlier.
A star broadcaster with Goan antecedents, Kamahl Santamaria is at the centre of a horrific scandal involving allegations of years of sexual harassment at Al Jazeera.
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