News in numbers |11 million cars hit by scandal, says Volkswagen3 min read . Updated: 23 Sep 2015, 12:31 PM IST
Gujarat has most diabetics in India, says report; Delhi and its suburbs are among the most polluted cities in the world
₹ 7,269 crore
The penalty levied by the market regulator on PACL, Delhi-based realty and land development company and its directors. This is the heaviest fine levied by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) yet. PACL had launched a few schemes in 1996 through which it mopped up thousands of crores of rupees from small investors but did not register them with the market regulator. Sebi directed it to register these schemes as a collective investment scheme after which, it asked the company not to launch any new schemes. PACL challenged this in the Rajasthan High Court saying these schemes don’t come under the purview of Sebi. The High Court quashed Sebi’s notice, but it was later upheld by the Supreme Court, which asked it to investigate the matter. Last year, Sebi asked PACL to refund ₹ 49,100 crore to its investors and wind up operations. This is more than twice the amount of 24,000 crore that Sahara was asked to return to its investors.
The number of cars Volkswagen said has been equipped with the same software that was used to cheat on emission tests in the US. In the biggest ever scandal in its 78-year-old history, Volkswagen was accused by US regulators of programming around 500,000 vehicles to emit lower levels of harmful emissions during official tests than on roads. The carmaker admitted that the problem was bigger and that rigging was done globally. It has said that it would set aside $7.3 billion to cover the costs of this scandal during the third quarter of this year and that it would adjust its earnings targets for the group accordingly. The CEO of Volkswagen, Martin Winterkorn, apologised for the current events but has refused to quit.
₹ 1.06 versus ₹ 2.58
The comparison between transportation cost via inland waterways and highways per tonne per km. India has failed to develop 14,500 km of its inland waterways as an alternative to move cargo despite 50% lower costs. The share of goods transported via inland waterways is just 0.4%. The equivalent numbers for Netherlands is 42%, for China and the US, 8.7% and 8% respectively. The Indian government would require ₹ 40,000 crore to develop new fairways and funding would come from the World Bank, Asian Development Bank and Japan International Cooperation Agency. According to Inland Waterways Authority of India’s chairman, contracts for waterways transport would be awarded in May next year and work on eight waterways will start by November 2016. In June this year, a project to develop a fairway between Allahabad and Haldia covering 1,620 km at an estimated ₹ 4,200 crore was launched with $3.5 million funding from the World Bank.
The percentage of India’s diabetics who are from Gujarat, though data from some states were not available. The National Health Profile 2015 released on Tuesday estimated the number of diabetics in India to be 559,718. Rajasthan is home to about 12% of India’s diabetics. Also topping the list of highest burden of hypertension, Gujarat reported 159,150 cases, accounting for 22% of the total number of cases. According to estimates by the World Health Organization, the prevalence of diabetes and hypertension is 62.47 and 159.46 respectively per 1,000 population of India.
The drop in pollution levels in the Delhi suburb of Gurgaon, after the area was declared a car-free day on Tuesday. PM 2.5 levels (fine suspended particles emitted by vehicle exhausts) fell by more than a fifth as over 10,000 fewer vehicles plied the roads. Starting next month, every Tuesday will be declared a car-free day. Delhi and its suburbs are among the most polluted cities in the world. Last year, Delhi replaced Beijing as the most polluted city in the world (according to the World Health Organization) and a recent research published in science journal Nature said Delhi had the second highest deaths due to sources of air pollution in the world. It also said in the absence of adequate measures to tackle air pollution, it may continue to be among the top three most polluted cities till 2050.
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