1. Wealth concentration and inequality
    • Wealth of Indian billionaires increased by 35% during lockdown as per Oxfam
    • India’s 100 top billionaires saw their fortunes increase by Rs 12,97,822 crore since March last year when the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country and this amount is enough to give 14 crore poorest Indians a cheque for Rs 94,045 each.
    • If India’s top 11 billionaires are taxed at just 1 per cent on the increase in their wealth during the pandemic, it will be enough to increase the allocation of Jan Aushadi Scheme by 140 times, which provides affordable medicines to the poor and marginalized. (Business Standard 25-01-21)
    • The concentration of wealth in India is “beyond comprehension” and its economic inequalities “are out of control,” said the latest Oxfam report.
    • Mukesh Ambani, the richest Indian, has added Rs 1, 357.5 billion to his fortunes, which stood at Rs 5,752.5 billion at last count. He was worth Rs 4,395 billion at the end of last year. (Economic Times 14-12-20)
    • Between March and October 2020, Mukesh Ambani’s wealth has more than doubled to Rs 5,872.5 billion, and he rose from 21st to sixth in the world’s largest fortunes,” notes the latest Oxfam report. “During this period, Mr. Ambani’s average enrichment over just over four days was more than the combined annual salaries of the entire Reliance Industries workforce of 1,95,000 employees.” (uca news.com 01-02-21)
    • As per International Labour Organization (ILO), the increase in the wealth of the Mukesh Ambani during pandemic could keep 40 crore informal workers out of poverty for at least 5 months. (unmid.com 25-01-21)
    • Gautam Adani has seen his wealth swell by some Rs 157.5 billion so far in 2020. He is now worth Rs 2,430 billion compared with Rs 847.5 billion at the end of last year .i.e. 3 times more. (Economic Times 14-12-20)
  2. Industries closed down
    • On 1 July 2019, it was stated in Parliament by the government that as high as 6.8 lakh establishments have closed down in the country. This is 36.07% of the total registered companies. (Economic Times 01-07-19)
    • During lockdown, shutters have reportedly been downed in as many as 2.7 lakh industries and 6 to 7 crore small and cottage industries. This is over and above declared closure of 6.8 lakh industries in the pre-lockdown period. (unmid.com 25-01-21)
    • Unemployment and job loss
    • CMIE report says India’s urban unemployment rate soars to 30.9% even as overall rate rises to 23.4%, indicating covid-19’s impact on the economy. Early estimates of jobs data indicate that the coronavirus effect may have left a devastating impact on the economy, sending urban unemployment rate soaring to 30.9% . Overall unemployment rose to 23.4%. (live mint 07-04-20)
    • Only in the last three months of lockdown, over 11 crore people were estimated to have lost jobs. Of these, 9 crore were daily wagers and around 2 crores were salary earners. Assuming that each person now having lost job was spending at least Rs 8,700 per month less than they were earlier, the crash in demand from them was close to Rs 100,000 crores a month.
    • 12 Crore Indians lost jobs and 84% Indian households saw their income falling in just one month. (Business Standard 16-05-20 and NDTV 28-05-20)
  3. India’s national Debt
    • India’s total debt-Rs 86, 50,268 crore. Interest Payments Per Year Rs 4,81,906 crores. Interest Payments Per Second Rs 1,52,812. National Debt Per Citizen Rs 65,285. (commodity.com 18-02-21)
    • In 2021-22, interest payments are estimated to be 15% higher than the interest obligations in 2019-20. Interest payment is estimated at 45% of revenue receipts in 2021-22, up from 36% in 2019-20. (prsindia.org 01-02-21)
  4. NPAs in banks
    • As of 31 March 2019, India’s scheduled commercial banks had gross NPAs worth Rs 9.49 lakh crore. (The Wire 01-07-19)
    • In a “very severe stressed scenario”, the gross non-performing assets of the banking sector could rise to as high as 14.7% of total loans by March 2021, the RBI stated. (Bloomberg quint-24-07-20)
    • Loans worth Rs 8 lakh crore written off by Indian banks in the last decade. (money control 31-12-20)
    • India’s industrial production dropped sharply in April when the country went into lockdown and most factories were not in operation. The index contracted by 55.5% compared with the same period a year earlier. That includes sectors such as mining, manufacturing and electricity. Manufacturing of consumer durables saw the sharpest decline for the month. (CNBC 22-06-20)
    • The RBI claimed that as much as Rs 5.2 lakh crore had been released by it to the banks by way of bringing down the borrowing rates. But there have hardly been any borrower from the banks. The Industrialists admitted in ASSOCHEM conference that there is no scope for taking bank loans because of absence of demand. the commercial banks were left with no option but to park all of that money in the RBI’s reverse repo account, which swelled from Rs 3 lakh crore on 27 March to Rs 8.4 lakh crore by the end of April. Neither the PM nor the FM made this truth public. (The Wire 18-05-20 and Ananda Bazar 29-07-20)
    • In 2019, 84,545 cases of bank frauds came to light. Amount involved is Rs1,85,772 crores. 2.14 lakh complaints have been lodged with the Ombudsman. RBI has informed this in reply to a query under RTI ACT. (ABP 28-07-20)
    • Indian banks have technically written off a staggering amount of Rs 68,607 crore due from 50 top wilful defaulters, including absconding diamantaire Mehul Choksi, according to a reply under RTI from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). (CNBC-28-04-20)
  5. Tax concessions and waivers granted to corporate houses
    • Revenue forgone by the government in the form of incentives and tax exemptions to corporates in 2019-20-Tax exemptions–Rs 99,842.06 crore. Revenue foregone on account of ‘accelerated depreciation’ was to the tune of Rs 50,251.56 crore. Revenue foregone on deduction of profits of undertakings engaged in generation, transmission and distribution of power was to tune of Rs 14,326.23 crore. Revenue foregone on deductions of profit of industrial undertakings derived from production of mineral oil and natural gas stood at Rs 1,418.12 crore. TOTAL—Rs 1,65, 837.97 crore. (Economic Times 01-02-21)
    • During its first term at the Centre, the Modi-led BJP government provided tax exemptions to corporate entities amounting to a whopping Rs. 4.32 lakh crore, according to Budget documents of various years. The amount of concessions increased every year from Rs. 65,067 crore in 2014-15 to about Rs.1.09 lakh crore in its last year, 2018-19. On an average, these concessions amounted to about 7.6% of the net tax revenue of the central government. If one adds Rs 1.46 crores of tax loss due to slash of corporate tax rate to 22% in 2019-20 and the estimated loss of Rs 1,65 , 837.97 this year, it would be a whooping Rs 7, 32 lakh crores. (News click 09-07-19, and prsindoa.org 01-02-21)
  6. Tax Revenues
    • Indian tax revenues remain largely dependent on indirect tax collections, which include all taxes on spending (such as GST). These indirect taxes account for over two-thirds of total tax revenue in India. (live mint-17-02-20)
    • Disinvestment of Public sector units and banks
    • As per Budget 2021, disinvestment of Air India, IDBI Bank, and Pawan Hans will be completed in 2021-22. Legislative amendments will be introduced to privatise two public sector banks and a General Insurance company. The IPO for LIC will also be completed in 2021-22. The government has approved a strategic disinvestment policy under which CPSEs will be maintained only in four sectors, with the rest being privatised. States will be incentivised to disinvest their public sector companies. A Special Purpose Vehicle will be used to monetise government owned land.
    • The disinvestment target for 2021-22 is Rs 1,75,000 crore. This target is 3.5 times higher than the disinvestment of Rs 50,304 crore in 2019-20. (Budget Speech 2021)
  7. Slash in subsidies
    • Food
    • Revied Budget 20-21-Rs 4,22, 618 crores
    • Budget estimate of 21-22- Rs 2, 42, 836 crores
    • Fertilizer
    • Revised budget 20-21 -Rs 1,33, 947 crores
    • Budget Estimate of 21-22- Rs 79, 530 crores-
    • Petroleum
    • Revised Budget 20-21- Rs 39, 055 crores
    • Budget Estimate 21-22-Rs 14, 073 crores (prsindia.org -01-02-21)
  8. Hike in petrol-Diesel-LPG prices
    • During BJP rule, excise duty on petrol-diesel has increased 12 times allowing government to mop up Rs 24 lakh crores as oil revenue. Quantum of excise on petrol and diesel have increased by 258 and 820% respectively. Price of LPG has gone up by Rs 175 in last 2 months and a half. (ABP-16-02-21, 22-02-21)
    • Central excise duty makes up for 39% of petrol and 42.5% of diesel. After considering local sales tax or VAT, the total tax incidence in the price is about two-third of the retail rate. (The Hindu 17-01-21)
    • Just during pandemic, the government further hiked excise duty on petrol and diesel by a record margin of Rs 10 and Rs 13 per litre respectively in May last amidst lockdown. Special additional excise duty on petrol was increased by Rs 2 per litre and road cess was hiked by Rs 8 a litre. In case of diesel, special additional excise duty was hiked by Rs 5 per litre and road cess raised by Rs 8 per litre. With this, the total incidence of excise duty on petrol rose to Rs 32.98 per litre and that on diesel to Rs 31.83. In a week, from 7-14 June, the government could mop up Rs 44,000 crores as additional revenue from raised excise duty and cess. (india.com 06-05-20)
    • In the current budget, subsidy on LPG and Kerosene has been slashed by about 66%. (ABP 16-02-21)
  9. Black Money
    • India’s black economy is estimated to be 62% of GDP – generating about Rs 93 lakh crore of revenue (or USD 14 trillion). It is larger than the income generated by agriculture and industry put together, which is about 39% of GDP. It is larger than the size of the government (Centre plus states) spending, which is about 27% of GDP. (Data furnished by Economist Arun Kumar)
  10. Poverty and fall in income
    • More than 80 crore people in India are considered poor. As per International Labour Organization (ILO), with a share of almost 90 per cent of people working in the informal economy, about 40 crore workers in the informal economy are at risk of falling deeper into poverty during the crisis. The poor hygiene conditions are the cause of diseases such as cholera, typhus and dysentery, in which especially children suffer and die. (https://www.soschildrensvillages.ca/news/poverty-in-india-602 downloaded on 31-01-20)
    • At least 84 percent of Indian households saw their income drop during the health crisis.
    • Many ordinary Indians are not able to access the health care they need. 6.3 crore of them are pushed into poverty because of healthcare costs every year – almost two people every second.
    • It would take 941 years for a minimum wage worker in rural India to earn what the top paid executive at a leading Indian garment company earns in a year. (Oxfam Report)
    • Weighed in terms of calorie consumption (i.e. minimum food intake which is dependent on earning level), two-thirds of people or 67-68% of Indians lives on less than Rs 140 ($2) a day. Over 30% even have less than Rs 98 ($1.250 per day available – they are considered extremely poor. This makes the India one of the poorest countries in the world; women and children, the weakest members of Indian society, suffer most. (First Post 20-12-14 and www.soschildrensvillages.ca/news/poverty-in-india-602)
    • On 15 April 2020, when the 21-day national lockdown imposed by the government ends, it is very likely that the bottom 47 percentile of India’s population will run out of cash. Estimates are based on the World Bank’s poverty line of $3.2 a day for a lower middle-income country such as India, assuming people are spending just to survive. What this means, in real terms, is that the poorest 50 crore Indians would be out of cash reserves completely by 15 April 2020 and another 50 crore will be left with just half their reserves. These findings are part of my ongoing research on mapping inequality in India using demonetization data. ((The Hindu-07-04-20)
    • 83 crore Indian survive on less than Rs20 a day. (Reuters)
  11. Hunger and Starvation
    • India ranks 94 out of 107 nations as per Global Hunger Index 2020.
    • 1/3rd of world’s 82 crore hungry people live in India
    • 230 million (23 crore) people go hungry every day. (Times of India 15-01-12).
    • There are 820 million chronically hungry people in the world. 1/3rd of that live in India. (Hunger Factsheet bhookh. com)
    • More than 7,000 Indians die everyday due to hunger though according to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), despite India wasting food worth about $14 billion a year, according to government figures. (snehan.org 04-01-19 and Thomson Reuters Foundation)
    • Over 3,00,000 children die every year in India because of hunger. And for many children who escape death, the poverty of their parents means that hunger remains an unremitting part of their lives. (Indian Express-26-07-18)
    • More than 20 crore people don’t have sufficient access to food, including 6 crore 78 lakh infants were found to have a birth weight of less than 2.5 kilograms – alarming figures for a country commonly referred to as the emerging market.((https://www.soschildrensvillages.ca/news/poverty-in-india-602 downloaded on 31-01-20)
  12. Suicide rates
    • The NCRB data shows that 10,159 students died by suicide in 2018, an increase from 9,905 in 2017, and 9,478 in 2016. Every hour one student commits suicide in India, with about 28 such suicides reported every day, according to data compiled by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB). (The Hindu-29-01-20)
    • Every day, 28 people dependent on farming die by suicide in India. People in the farm sector accounted for 7.4 per cent of the total suicides in India, according to the latest NCRB report. (Down to Earth 03-09-20)
    • At least 10,281 persons involved in the farm sector ended their lives in 2019, accounting for 7.4 per cent of the total number of suicides in India which was 139,516, suggests the Accidental Deaths and Suicides in India report 2019 by the National Crime Records Bureau. (Down to Earth 03-09-20)
    • The farmers suicide rate in India had ranged between 1.4 and 1.8 per 100,000 totalpopulation, over a 10-year period through 2005, however the figures in 2017 and 2018 showed an average of more than 10 suicides daily. (Gruère, G. & Sengupta, D. (2011).
    • Over 42,000 workers from informal sector allegedly die by suicide, As the NCRB presented the latest data on suicide deaths revealing highest number in last three years, SabrangIndia spoke to experts about the rising suicide rates among farmers, labourers and daily wage workers. (sabrangindia 08-09-20)
    • The share of daily-wage earners among those who died by suicide has been steadily rising, doubling to 23.4 per cent in 2019 as compared to six years before. (Indian Express-06-09-20)
Please share
scroll to top