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Government revises GDP growth for 2014-15 downwards to 7.2 percent

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New Delhi: The government on Friday slightly revised downwards India’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth for 2014-15 to 7.2 percent from the 7.3 percent estimated earlier, according to an official statement here.

Central Statistics Office’s (CSO) revised estimates of national accounts released here today.

The real GDP or GDP at constant (2011-12) prices for the years 2014-15 and 2013-14 stands at Rs.105.52 lakh crore and Rs.98.39 lakh crore, respectively, showing growth of 7.2 percent during 2014-15, and 6.6 percent during 2013-14,

The GDP growth rate for 2013-14 has also been revised downwards to 6.6 percent from the earlier 6.9 percent.

The CSO said estimates of GDP and other figures for the years 2011-12 to 2013-14 have also undergone revision, as a result of latest available data on agricultural and industrial production.

In terms of real gross value added (GVA) at 2011-12 basic prices, there has been a growth of 7.1 percent in 2014-15 as compared to a growth of 6.3 percent in 2013-14. GVA for 2014-15 was earlier estimated at 7.2 percent.

The downward revision in GVA for 2014-15 is owing to a subdued performance of the secondary sector comprising manufacturing, electricity, gas, water supply & other utility services, and construction, the government said.

The per capita net national income at current prices has been estimated as Rs.79,412 for 2013-14 and at Rs.86,879 in 2014-15.

The per capita private final consumption expenditure at current prices, for the years 2013-14 and 2014-15 is estimated at Rs.52,022 and Rs.56,772, respectively.

Gross savings during 2014-15 is estimated at Rs.41.17 lakh crore as compared to Rs.37.25 lakh crore during 2013-14.

The rate of gross saving to gross national disposable income (GNDI) for the year 2014-15 is estimated at 32.3 percent, which was the same as in 2013-14.

Household sector contribution to gross saving declined from 63.4 percent in 2013-14 to 57.8 percent in 2014-15 which the government attributed to a decline in household savings in physical assets, which has declined from Rs.14.61 lakh crore in 2013-14 to Rs.13.79 lakh crore in 2014-15.

Dis-saving of the central government has decreased from 4 percent in 2013-14 to 3.2 percent in 2014-15, the CSO added in this regard.

In gross capital formation (GCF), while the highest contributor – non-financial corporations’ – share has been rising steadily from 45.7 percent in 2011-12 to 52 percent in 2014-15, the share of the household sector has declined from 43.4 percent in 2011-12 to 33.9 percent in 2014-15.

Gross fixed capital formation (GFCF) amounted to Rs.38.44 lakh crore in 2014-15 as against Rs 35.64 lakh crore in 2013-14, the government said.(Inputs from IANS)(Picture Courtesy: m.indiatvnews.com)

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What if Another Gorakhpur Tragedy Happens? 15-Year-Old Khushi Chandra Launches Initiative ‘Oxygen Gorakhpur’ to Combat Oxygen-Related Emergencies

Through her initiative Oxygen Gorakhpur, Khushi Chandra aims to raise funds for a continuous supply of oxygen to several under-resourced hospitals in Gorakhpur.

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Gorakhpur Tragedy
15 year old Khushi Sharma believes no child must be denied the right to live, or the right to breathe for which she has set up the charity 'Oxygen Gorakhpur'. VOA
  • Gorakhpur tragedy shook the entire nation starting early August after numerous children suffering from brain inflammation died in absence of oxygen
  • Over 290 children have died at BRD hospital, including 77 reported deaths from Acute Encephalitis Syndrome
  • Khushi Chandra launched ‘Oxygen Gorakhpur’ to offer assistance and provision of oxygen cylinders in case of emergencies

Gorakhpur, August 30, 2017: Child after child collapsed at Gorakhpur’s BRD Medical College in early August as the hospital ran out of oxygen supplies. Words fall short to mourn the deaths of over 60 children, among them several new born babies, or to slam the negligence of the hospital authorities in what has come to be known as the ‘Gorakhpur Tragedy’. As figures continue to soar even after a month, the tragedy has triggered gigantic uproar across the country. This prompted a teenager from Uttar Pradesh to launch a charity named ‘OXYGEN GORAKHPUR’.

The 15-year old face behind the not-for-profit organization ‘Oxygen Gorakhpur’, Khushi Chandra believes the Gorakhpur tragedy could have been prevented.

“This is very personal for me as it happened right at my doorstep. No child can be denied the right to life, and in this case, the right to breathe,” she said as she pioneered her righteous cause.

The organization aims to provide a secure and continues the supply of oxygen to indigent patients and hospitals across Gorakhpur in an attempt to meet sufficient requirements of the hospitals.

The organization aims to function on three dominant parameters-

  • Providing oxygen cylinders to hospitals during emergency
  • Reaching out to the needy by providing timely assistance
  • Build a strong oxygen-bank to provide round the clock support to hospitals

In the coming future, Oxygen Gorakhpur also aims to allocate oxygen provision vans for the transportation and delivery of oxygen cylinders to hospitals.

Horrific pictures of parents holding corpses of infants spanned across screens throughout mid-August with parents claiming they had died due to lack of oxygen in Gorakhpur’s Bada Raghav Das Medical(BRD) College after suffering from Acute Encephalitis Syndrome and Japanese Encephalitis, two diseases that are common in India, especially during the monsoons

The Gorakhpur tragedy has exposed the harsh reality of Uttar Pradesh’s flawed public healthcare system out in the open.

Through Oxygen Gorakhpur, Khushi intends to ensure that this does not happen again, and instill a sense of citizenship and responsibility towards the larger society, among the youth and adults alike while also ensuring improvement of conditions of hospitals and their amenities.

ALSO READ: Top Highlights of PM Narendra Modi’s Speech on India’s 71st Independence Day

Additionally, the initiative will serve and protect the youth by exhibiting support, and encouragement while also empowering citizens to be the change-makers of today.

“As an accountable citizen of my city and the country, I feel responsible towards ensuring such tragedies do not happen again”, she said as per a report by ANI.

According to latest reports by PTI, over 290 children have died at the hospital from August 1 to August 28, including 77 reported deaths from Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES).

Chandra also observed that the Indian government’s expenditure on public health services makes up for less than 1 per cent of the GDP, which is among the world’s lowest figures. However, she is hopeful as the Modi-led government has increased spending on health services, with an underlying aim to make healthcare more affordable and available.

Chandra feels help must immediately be provided to under-resourced hospitals and must be maintained in the long run.

“I seek support from other like-minded citizens to join hands to ensure that oxygen never runs out in our hospitals” are Khushi’s words on Oxygen Gorakhpur’s official website.

Citizens can extend their support to this noble initiative by buying an oxygen cylinder, contributing funds or spreading the word about the project.

 


 

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Fewer Indians use Tobacco in 2015-16 than a decade ago, but the Country still world’s No. 2 Consumer and Producer

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Tobacco use is one of the main risk factors for a number of chronic diseases, including cancer, lung diseases and cardiovascular diseases, Pixabay

May 31, 2017: Fewer Indians used tobacco in 2015-16 than a decade ago, but only China consumes and produces more tobacco, keeping cancer rates high, according to the latest national health data.

Tobacco consumption in India is the highest in the six northeastern states of Mizoram, Meghalaya, Manipur, Nagaland, Tripura and Assam: On average, 70.7 per cent men here use tobacco in some form or the other, according to data from the National Family Health Survey 2015-16 (NFHS-4). This figure is 26 percentage points higher than the national average.

Mizoram tops the northeast list, with 80.4 per cent men and 59.2 per cent women between 15 and 49 years consuming tobacco. When ranked for men using tobacco, it is followed by Meghalaya (72.2 per cent), Manipur (70.6 per cent), Nagaland (69.4 per cent), Tripura (67.8 per cent) and Assam (63.9 per cent).

At 37.7 per cent, the female average for tobacco users in Manipur, Tripura, Meghalaya and Nagaland was way above the national average of 6.8 per cent.

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The northeastern states also report a higher risk for cancer — 112 men and 60 women of 1,000 die of cancer here while the national average is 47 for men and 44 for women, according to the 2012 Million Death Study published in The Lancet.

Tobacco use is one of the main risk factors for a number of chronic diseases, including cancer, lung diseases and cardiovascular diseases. And not just in the northeast, elsewhere too millions of Indians continue to be vulnerable to these diseases.

The latest national average for tobacco consumption, according to NFHS-4 — 44.5 per cent men and 6.8 per cent women — is lower than 2005-06 figures. Tobacco use has fallen in India — by 12.5 percentage points for men and four percentage points for women — over a decade.

But India is still the second-highest producer and consumer of tobacco, according to National Tobacco Control Programme.

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In 2011, the total cost of dealing with diseases related to tobacco use among the 35-69 age group amounted to Rs 1.05 lakh crore ($22.4 billion). This is 1.16 per cent of GDP and 12 per cent more than the combined state and central government expenditure on healthcare in 2011.

The survey also shows that 29.3 per cent female and 30.6 per cent male tobacco users in the 15-49 age group tried to wean themselves off tobacco in the 12 months preceding the survey. In Mizoram, tobacco use has fallen by 1.6 percentage points and three percentage points for women and men, respectively, since 2005-06.

Punjab and Puducherry with 19.2 per cent and 14.4 per cent, respectively, recorded the lowest use of tobacco among men. Fewer than one per cent women in the 15-49 age group use any kind of tobacco in Himachal Pradesh, Daman & Diu, Kerala, Chandigarh and Puducherry.

Both men and women (between 15 and 49 years of age) use more tobacco in India’s villages than its cities. Among urban women, 4.4 per cent use it compared to the 8.1 per cent women in villages. For men in villages, the figure is 48 per cent and in cities, 38.9 per cent.

Even on the question of trying to go off tobacco, more urban women users (33 per cent) make an effort than women users in villages (28.2 per cent). But the trend is reversed for men: 31.2 per cent male tobacco users in villages and 29.6 per cent in cities tried to wean themselves off tobacco.

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Not a single state has more than 50 per cent of male and female tobacco consumers (in the 15-49 age group) attempting to quit consumption of tobacco in any form in 12 months preceding the survey.

The number of those using smokeless tobacco (25.9 per cent) is almost double that of those who smoke (14 per cent), according to Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2009-10.

‘Tobacco is responsible for nearly 50 per cent cancers in India and 90 per cent of mouth cancers. Half of the mouth cancer patients die within 12 months of diagnosis,’ said Pankaj Chaturvedi, professor and surgeon at the Tata Memorial Hospital in Mumbai.

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Tobacco caused 42 per cent of all cancers in men and 18 per cent of all cancers in women, according to the Million Death Study. In all, tobacco caused 120,000 cancers with twice as many oral cancers as lung cancer. This highlights the high prevalence of tobacco chewing in India.

‘Raising taxes on tobacco products is an evidence-based tool to reduce tobacco use. We appeal to the government to levy highest Goods and Services Tax on all tobacco products, including beedi,’ said Michelle Reyes, an expert with the International Union Against TB and Lung Disease, in a statement released on the eve of the International Tobacco Day. (IANS)

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India’s dream of outdoing China: just a dream?

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Image source: skynews.com.au

By Sol Palha

India has had many aspirations to overtake China, but this is more of a pipedream than reality. India’s corruption makes China’s corruption seem non-existent. Add in the traffic jams, and filth one has to deal with in parts of Mumbai and Delhi, and the allure of investing in India loses its appeal rather rapidly.

This is the reason India continues to suffer such a massive amount of brain drain. Smart Indians understand that their best option is to seek greener pastures. Modi’s government had the strongest mandate of any government, yet like all his predecessors he seems to be all talk and little to no action; he has failed to implement any noteworthy changes.

The first thing he should have done was to streamline the investment process, by making it easy for foreigners to invest. With foreign investment comes a plethora of jobs; instead he continues to chant the same old song of change while marching to the drumbeat of no change. This century belongs to China, and the world recognizes this. No one flinches when Indian markets are tanking but if Chinese markets tank or there is some bad news coming out of China the world’s financial markets react and in most cases the reaction is usually very strong. From a mass psychology perspective, this tells us that the financial markets recognize China as the defacto leader and India if it’s lucky might manage to hold onto some position in the top 5. India will not take out China in the near future, but that does not mean one should not invest in Indian companies. There are still some Indian companies that are worth investing in; we would wait for strong pullbacks before committing money into any of these stocks.

We are going to list a few of Jim Rogers’s recent quotes as he seems to concur

You can’t just invest on hope. Even If reforms started coming, it may not be enough to make the markets go higher, because markets have already factored it in. If the reforms are substantial, the markets may go higher. No indication of that.

If Modi made the currency convertible, if he made the markets open to outsiders, then I would have to be back in India again. So far Modi has been doing worthwhile things like addressing some social issues — I am all for that, and that is great for a lot of people — but India needs more.

You have saved your farmers by making it illegal for foreigners to own more than five hectares — how on earth can an Indian farmer compete with an Australian farmer with 50,000 hectares? In history, India has been one of the great agricultural nations of the world — you have the land, the people, weather — God gave you everything. And then, he also gave you Delhi to mess it all up.

Conclusion

While the Indian economy has grown nicely over the years, we think the tiger will have a hard time dethroning the Golden Dragon. India’s has a GDP of roughly $2.1 trillion, and that sadly is a long way off from China’s current GDP of $11.3 trillion.

At this stage, it’s not even a close race. In fact, the odds are higher that China will displace the US as the top dog than India overtaking China. While there are some great companies in India, from a long-term perspective, China makes for a better investment as the market is extremely oversold; great companies are selling for a fraction of their former prices. For example, CHH, HNP and BABA are some companies worth taking a closer look at.

“Be ready when opportunity comes. Luck is the time when preparation and opportunity meet.” ~ Roy D Chapin Jr.

(The article was first published in safehaven.com)