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...Most importantly, it made the ill-gotten cash worthless, unless the corrupt hoarders found innovative ways to change their old notes. The move was immediately hailed as a master-stroke by poor, middle-class Indians – an attempt to fulfil the major election promise by PM to recover black money. The opposition parties were too stunned to react instantly. But as the days passed and bank employees worked on war-footing; chinks started to emerge in logistics in terms of long queues, cash crunch, non-functioning and dry ATMs. Hard-working, honest people were affected. Harish, a poor carpenter, was distraught as he could not get Rs 5000 for the treatment of his only son. Ordinary working-class people are struggling to meet their cash demand and wasting many productive hours in queues. Opposition parties were quick to criticise the government demanding a rollback of the scheme. ...TOI on Dec. 2, 2016, 6:25 p.m.
...A farmer, empowered with this information, can take his produce for sell wherever he gets the desired price, thereby connecting producers directly to consumers, processors, exporters or large retailers. The intent is to accrue maximum benefit to both farmers and consumers as farmers decide “when, where and at what price” they sell their produce by collapsing the long supply chain and removing the profit of the middle-man (arhtiya). This portal will eventually link 585 mandis by March 2018, creating a seamless national market for agricultural and horticultural produce in India. The farmers will be provided “farmer helpline services” for any information related to this portal and soil testing facilities near the mandis. ...TOI on Oct. 26, 2016, 3:45 p.m.
...While most economists focused on the decelerating real growth number, the Economic Advisor to the Ministry of Finance, Arvind Subramanian, highlighted the accelerating nominal growth number. According to him, the economy is definitely on the upswing as nominal GVA (Gross Value Added) was at seven-quarter high and almost at double-digits (9.9 percent). This calls for a closer look at the latest growth number. The surprise element in the growth numbers was the real GDP growth at 7.1 coming in below GVA growth of 7.3 percent – a fall of 0.2 percentage points (ppt) after growing 0.5 ppt above in last quarter. ...TOI on Sept. 28, 2016, 5:31 p.m.