Daily Briefing: Eye on inflation, RBI planning 3rd rate hike this year; A lost and found Mumbai story

Start your weekend with the top 5 stories from today’s issue: RBI targets 3rd rate hike this year; a lost and found Mumbai story; HThe trainer of ow CWG medalist Tejaswin Shankar spotted a high jump talent in a cricket enthusiast; and more.

1) Citing elevated inflation levels to remain above the RBI’s upper target range of 6 percent, the Monetary Policy Committee said on Friday decided unanimously to increase the repo rate – the rate at which the RBI lends to commercial banks – by 50 basis points to 5.4 per cent with immediate effect.

Why? In its statement, RBI said that with expected inflation above the upper threshold in Q2 and Q3, the MPC stressed that persistently high inflation could destabilize inflation expectations and hurt growth in the medium term.

Influence: Despite the 50 basis point hike – the second such increase in two months and a total of 140 basis points increase in three months – equity markets remained strong and the benchmark Sensex on the BSE closed the day at 58,387, up 89 points.

RBI Governor Shakktanta Das said: “In an ocean of high turbulence and uncertainty, the Indian economy is an island of macroeconomic and financial stability. Economic growth is resilient despite two black swan events and multiple shocks.”

2) Of the 166 girls who went missing between 2008 and 2015, Assistant Sub-Inspector Rajendra Dhondu Bhosle of DN Nagar Police Station in Mumbai was able to locate 165. She remained the #166 girl that Bhosle kept trying to find for two years as a police officer and seven years after retirement. At 8:20 p.m. Thursday, the girl, who turned just seven on January 22, 2013, was finally reunited with her family. The 16-year-old was found 500 meters from her home in Andheri (West). That’s how it happened.

3) Meet the man who first discovered the sporting potential of 23-year-old high jumper Tejaswin Shankar – his coach from school, Sunil Kumar. “The year I started school, class 8 students were running and I noticed him. He was very tall even then. I spoke to him and asked him what he was doing. He said he played cricket,” he recalled. “I asked him about athletics and told him he had the qualities. We started training during the season.” On Thursday, Shankar took the bronze medal at the Commonwealth Games, becoming the first Indian to win a high jump medal at the international multisport event.

Also read | “Would a javelin pierce my chest? Was my fifth step good? Oh, the pole didn’t fall. I’m Such a Fool’ – Tejaswin Shankar defeats Mind Demons to win the CWG Bronze Medal

4) Nine months after Prime Minister Narendra Modi made some headline-grabbing promises at last year’s Glasgow climate conference, the government on Wednesday turned two of them into official targets that would now form part of it India’s international climate commitments for 2030.

India’s NDC or nationally determined commitments were updated with these two pledges, both of which are improvements to existing targets, and would be presented to the UN climate panel. India’s first NDC was filed in 2015, just before the Paris Agreement was finalized.

India’s original NDC for 2030:

* A 33-35 percent reduction in emissions intensity (or emissions per unit of GDP) from 2005 levels

* At least 40 percent of all electricity generation from non-fossil renewable sources

* An increase in forest cover to create an additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent

Now:

* India will now reduce its emissions intensity by at least 45 percent by 2030 from 2005 levels, instead of just 33 to 35 percent.

* It would also now ensure that at least 50 percent of its total electricity generation, not just 40 percent, would come from renewable sources by 2030.

* The forest target was not touched.

🍿 What to see this weekend

5) This week Shubhra Gupta reviews Alia Bhatt’s latest OTT release “Darlings”: Alia Bhatt, Vijay Varma, Shefali Shah and Roshan Mathew deliver superb performances in a film that knows its stuff. A few forced comic accents spoil the effect though. (2.5 ⭐)

The Express Saturday Quiz

A long-lost Banksy painting of Bethlehem, one of several works created in secret around 2007, has been found. Its relocation raises ethical questions about the removal of artworks from the occupied territories and the display of politically charged art in settings other than where it was created. Where was it found?

Until tomorrow,

Rachel Philipose and Vidya Gowri

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