Photo: Mint
Photo: Mint

News In Numbers: GST revenue collection in April tops Rs1 trillion

In other newsTelecom commission approves Wi-Fi services on flights, India cuts stent prices by more than 7%

Rs103,458 crore

What is it? The total gross revenue earned by the government by way of goods and services tax in April 2018.

Why is it important? This is the first time that the GST collections have crossed the Rs1 trillion mark, which the ministry of finance attributed to the “upswing in the economy and better compliance" though it warned against taking this to be a trend as people generally pay arrears for the previous financial year in the last month. The government is hopeful of better collections in the coming months with the implementation of measures such as the e-way bill.

Tell me more: The compliance rate of taxpayers under GSTR-3B is 69.5% while that for composition dealers, it is 59.4%.

3,000 metres

What is it? The altitude that an aircraft needs to reach for one to make calls while flying in Indian airspace in a few months, according to a recommendation made earlier by the telecom regulator.

Why is it important? The telecom commission has cleared an approval for flyers to avail data and voice services during flights, accepting almost all the recommendations made by the telecom regulator in this regard. These services are expected to kick-off in about 3 months. According to a Deloitte estimate, a quarter of the planes will be equipped with in-flight connectivity and there will be a billion passenger journeys on such aircraft in 2018.

Tell me more: Some airlines such as Emirates and Qatar Airways offer free in-flight Wi-Fi (with restrictions) while some others like Virgin Atlantic charge as much as $22.3 per flight.

Rs27,890

What is it? The price of drug-releasing stents (small wire-mesh structures used to treat blocked arteries) that was reduced from Rs30,180 in February this year.

Why is it important? India has reportedly refused to budge from its decision to cap prices for additional medical devices even though some companies, especially the US-based ones that say they have been affected by such price controls. Last year, the government set up a core committee to include essential devices under the ambit of a National List of Essential Medical Devices, in a bid to provide quality but affordable healthcare services.

Tell me more: After price controls were brought in for stents and knee implants, the United States Trade Representative wrote to the Indian government urging it to refrain from adding more devices to this list. India’s medical device market is estimated to be around $5 billion.

119

What is it? The number of posts reserved for scheduled caste candidates if Banaras Hindu University (BHU) considers each department as a separate unit for reservation.

Why is it important? This number is 59% less if the old formula of considering the Banaras Hindu University as one unit. In the case of scheduled tribes, the numbers will contract to 29 (departments as a unit) as compared to 310 (BHU as a unit). The end result of implementing reservation of posts under the new formula would be only 20% of posts will be reserved under the new formula as compared to 38% in the old formula.

Tell me more: The Allahabad high court had asked the University Grants Commission, the higher education regulator, to fill posts under the new formula where each departments within a university will be considered as a unit. Government has now decided to appeal against this verdict.

Rs14,000 crore

What is it? The amount paid by France’s Schneider Electric to acquire electrical and automation business of Larsen & Toubro Ltd (L&T).

Why is it important? This sale is part of L&T’s strategy to exit non-core businesses that could give better returns to shareholders. The electrical and automation division of L&T had net revenue of Rs5,038 crore or 5% of L&T’s total revenue. After the deal, India will become the third largest market for the French company.

Tell me more: Temasek Holdings Pte, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, will hold minority stake in the merged entity and will invest Rs5,075 crore.

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