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Insights Daily Current Events, 11 April 2015

Insights Daily Current Events, 11 April 2015


Victims must get full treatment: SC

The Supreme Court recently through an order made it mandatory for Private hospitals across the country to provide full and free medical treatment to the victims of acid attack.

What else has the Court said?

  • The court has directed all States to take up with private hospitals and ensure that they do not deny treatment to acid attack victims.
  • The order said the term “treatment” included reconstructive surgery, free medicines, bed, rehabilitation and aftercare.
  • The court has directed the State governments to take action against the hospitals turning away victims.

Effects of this order:

  • Now, private hospitals could neither turn away victims of acid attack nor wash their hands of after providing first aid.


  • The order came on a public interest litigation petition filed by Laxmi, an acid attack victim, following nine years of fighting for the rights of victims.
  • Laxmi was only 15 when three men, one of whom she had refused to marry, threw acid on her near Tughlaq Road in New Delhi. She has been fighting a lonely battle since 2006 in the Supreme Court, and in the process, succeeded in getting the Indian Penal Code amended to make acid attack a special offence.
  • She further persuaded the court to increase the compensation for victims to Rs. 3 lakh, besides procuring a complete ban on over-the-counter sale of acid.
  • The recent order dealt with Ms. Laxmi’s final demand for getting victims proper treatment, aftercare and rehabilitation.

Sources: The Hindu.


India, France agree on deal for 36 Rafale jets

Indian PM, during his visit to France, has announced that the Indian Air Force (IAF) would buy 36 Rafale fighters in fly-away condition.


  • These will equip two IAF squadrons with 18 aircraft each.
  • However, the announcement is silent about the plan to build the Rafale at Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL), a central part of the tender. So far, this multi-billion dollar procurement, conceived as a springboard for the modernisation of India’s aerospace sector, will only benefit that of France.
  • The recent announcement underlines the continuing failure by India and France to take to a logical conclusion the IAF’s August 2007 tender for 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA), of which 18 were to be supplied fully built and 108 built in India by HAL.

Sources: BS.


India, France sign deal for Jaitapur N-project

India and France recently signed an agreement to fast-track the stalled nuclear project in Jaitapur in Maharashtra.


  • The Jaitapur project, where French company Areva is to set up six nuclear reactors with a total power generation capacity of about 10,000 Mw, is stuck for long because of differences over the cost of electricity to be generated.
  • The agreement signed between India’s Larsen and Toubro and France’s Areva is aimed at cost reduction by increasing localisation, thereby improving the financial viability of Jaitapur project.

Sources: BS.


Centre links disaster compensation to farmers with headline inflation

With unseasonal rains and hailstorms leading to massive loss to agriculture in around 10 states, the Centre has increased the amount of assistance to farmers by 50%.

  • The assistance will also be automatically reviewed in April each year based on the annual inflation derived from the Wholesale Price Index (WPI) and rounded off to the next multiple of 100. This would ensure that from now on, assistance to farmers will be linked to the WPI and could get automatically increased.
  • Aid to farmers is provided under the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) and State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF), in which the Centre contributes 75% while states share the rest.

Headline inflation is a measure of the total inflation within an economy, including commodities such as food and energy prices (e.g., oil and gas), which tend to be much more volatile and prone to inflationary spikes.

Sources: BS.


RBI’s forex reserves climb to an all-time high of $ 343 bn

The Reserve Bank of India’s foreign exchange reserves hit an all-time high of $343 billion for the week ending April 3.

  • The rise in reserves was $1.63 billion. This is the ninth time this year foreign exchange reserves touched an all-time high. Foreign currency assets rose $2.40 billion to $318.64 billion.

Forex reserves:

Foreign exchange reserves are an important component of the balance of payments and an essential element in the analysis of an economy’s external position.

  • The components of India’s foreign exchange reserves are foreign currency assets (FCA), gold, SDRs and reserve tranche position (RTP) in the IMF.
  • Foreign Currency Assets (FCA) is the biggest component of the forex reserves.


It is an international reserve asset, created by the IMF in 1969 to supplement its member countries’ official reserves.

  • Its value is based on a basket of four key international currencies, and SDRs can be exchanged for freely usable currencies. The SDR basket consists of the euro, Japanese yen, pound sterling, and U.S. dollar.
  • The SDR is neither a currency, nor a claim on the IMF. Rather, it is a potential claim on the freely usable currencies of IMF members.

Holders of SDRs can obtain these currencies in exchange for their SDRs in two ways:

  1. Through the arrangement of voluntary exchanges between members and
  2. By the IMF designating members with strong external positions to purchase SDRs from members with weak external positions.

Sources: BS, IMF.

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