The week in 5 charts | The Adani crisis, Union Budget 2023-24, Peshawar bombings, and more

Here are five charts that will help you understand some of the key stories from this week

February 05, 2023 12:39 am | Updated 12:39 am IST

(1) The Adani Crisis

Over the past week, a U.S-based research company’s report about the Adani Group has shaken up the Group’s companies. The report alleged that Gautam Adani, founder and chairman of the group, has added over $100 billion to his net worth over the last three years, largely through stock price appreciation in the group’s seven key listed companies, which have spiked about 819% in the same period. The key listed companies under the Adani Group have also taken on substantial debt, including “pledging shares of their inflated stock for loans”. Most top ranks in the company are held by members of the Adani family.

Adani Group stocks have taken a beating on the bourses after the report, including fraudulent transactions and share price manipulation at the Gautam Adani-led group.

Watch |What is the Adani-Hindenburg saga all about?

The company has a 37.4% stake in Adani Total Gas Ltd and a 20% holding in Adani Green Energy Ltd. The 10 listed Adani Group firms have faced a combined erosion of over ₹8.76 lakh crore in the past 6 days.

The report led to a loss of $48 billion across companies of the Adani Group last week. Adani Group has dismissed the charges as lies, saying it complies with all laws and disclosure requirements.

(2) Union Budget 2023-24

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesday presented her last full-fledged Budget before the 2024 Lok Sabha elections in Parliament. Budget 2023 focused on raising capital expenditure by the government, fiscal consolidation, and attractive incentives and rebates in the new income tax regime. The first Budget of the Amrit Kaal - the 25-year period leading to the centenary of Indian independence in 2047 - aimed to build on existing “inclusive development” efforts that assign overall priority for the underprivileged, she said while presenting the budget.

Also read | Decoding Budget 2023

Giving an impetus to growth and job creation, and creating opportunities, especially for the youth, she said, was a key focus of the government’s economic agenda to achieve its vision for the Amrit Kaal. The FM summed up the BJP-led government’s achievements since 2014 as “leaving no one behind”, taking just 200-odd words to outline the doubling of per capita income to Rs 1.97 lakh, the increasing formalisation of the economy, and the expansion of targeted benefits. She then used the rest of her Budget speech to soothe sections of society that may have felt a tad left behind over its nine-year-tenure. Here are the charts that show major aspects of Union Budget 2023:

Also read |Key takeaways from Union Budget 2023-24 in charts

(3) Economic Survey 2022-23

The Economic Survey 2022-23 was published on Tuesday, January 31. Some conclusions drawn from the report include:

  • GST paid by the MSME’s in FY22 crossed pre-pandemic levels, as shown in the chart below.
  • After suffering a blow in sales in FY21, automobile sales rose in FY23 but are yet to reach pre-pandemic levels.
  • New launches of housing units has surpassed the pre-pandemic levels, whereas sale of housing units has managed to reach the pre-pandemic levels over the last 3 quarters of FY23.
  • FDI equity inflows for the period of April to September in 2022 showed that over 34% of it went to computer software and hardware, followed by Services and Trade at 22% and 18%. The sector-wise distribution of FDI equity inflow is shown below.
  • Commodity prices saw a sharp rise, mainly due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Natural Gas and Coal saw the largest increase in prices since February, followed by Fertilizer.

(4) Peshawar Bomb blast

Once known as “the city of flowers”, Pakistan’s Peshawar was rocked by a blast in a mosque, by a suicide bomber, inside the city’s main police compound on Monday, January 30. The blast claimed at least 101 victims, and injured at least 225, mostly police. Peshawar was a trading city, situated at the gates of a key mountain valley connecting South and Central Asia. But  for the past four decades, it has borne the brunt of rising militancy in the region, fuelled by the conflicts in neighbouring Afghanistan and the geopolitical games of great powers.

Monday morning’s bombing, raised alarm among officials over a major security breach at a time when the Pakistani Taliban, the main anti-government militant group, has stepped up attacks, particularly targeting the police and the military.

Who carried out the bombing was unclear. A commander from the Pakistani Taliban, known by the acronym TTP, claimed responsibility, but a spokesman for the group later distanced the TTP from the carnage, saying it was not its policy to attack mosques.

More than 300 worshippers were praying in the Sunni mosque, with more approaching, when the bomber set off his explosives vest, officials said. The blast blew off part of the roof, and what was left caved in, injuring many more, according to Zafar Khan, a police officer. Peshawar is the capital of the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, where it is the largest city.

The chart below shows the zone-wise total number of incidents of suicide attacks and civilian deaths in Pakistan from March 2000 until January 30, 2023. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has seen the most number of suicide attacks (290) which has resulted in the death of 2215 civilians since March 2000. This is far greater than all other zones.

Analysts say the carnage is the legacy of decades of flawed policies by Pakistan and the United States. Peshawar — less than 30 kilometres (20 miles) from the Afghan border — became the centre where the American CIA and Pakistani military helped train, arm and fund the Afghan mujahedeen fighting the Soviets. The city was flooded by weapons and fighters, many of them hard-line Islamic militants, as well as with hundreds of thousands of Afghan refugees.

During the nearly 20-year U.S. war against the Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan, militant groups blossomed in the tribal regions of Pakistan along the border and around Peshawar. Like the Taliban, they found root among the ethnic Pashtuns who make up a majority in the region and in the city. Some groups were encouraged by the Pakistani intelligence agencies. But others turned their guns against the government, angered by heavy security crackdowns and by frequent U.S. airstrikes in the border region targeting al-Qaida and other militants.

Chief among the anti-government groups was the Pakistani Taliban, or Tahreek-e Taliban-Pakistani, or TTP. In the late 2000s and early 2010s, it waged a brutal campaign of violence around the country. Peshawar was scene of one of the bloodiest TTP attacks in 2014, on an army-run public school that killed nearly 150 people, most of them schoolboys.

(5) Inflation of Health-related sub-groups

Medicines, hospital and nursing home charges, consultation fees, and tests like X-ray, ECG, etc. saw an increase in prices in July 2021, due to the second wave of COVID-19. Prices for medicines and tests have decreased from March 2022, but inflation rates consultation fees and hospital charges have remained fairly stagnant ever since the second wave.

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