BQuick On Nov. 25: Top 10 Stories In Under 10 Minutes
Here is a roundup of the day’s top stories in brief.
1. Higher Premiums Fail To Deter Health Insurance Demand
Premiums of health and general insurance have risen in the last two months after the sector regulator introduced standardisation norms, directing companies to either add features to their products or make them uniform.
The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India permitted an increase of up to 5% in premiums. Beyond that, the regulator had the discretion to allow hikes on a case-to-case basis.
Standardised clauses are applicable on new policies filed by insurers on or after October 2020, and from April 2021 for existing products that are due for renewal.
The online insurance aggregator Policybazaar said as many as 43% of its customers have seen premiums rise by nearly 5%, while 15% witnessed price hikes ranging between 5% and 15%.
Standardisation alone hasn’t resulted in increased prices of policies.
2. Lakshmi Vilas Bank Moratorium To Be Lifted On Nov. 27
The Reserve Bank of India said the amalgamation of Lakshmi Vilas Bank with DBS Bank India Ltd. will come into force from Nov. 27 and the moratorium imposed on the crisis-ridden lender will be removed on that day.
The RBI issued the statement within hours of the Cabinet clearing the Scheme of Amalgamation of Lakshmi Vilas Bank with DBIL.
Depositors will be able to operate their accounts as customers of DBS Bank India with effect from Friday.
All the branches of will function as branches of DBS Bank India Ltd. with effect from this date, RBI said.
3. Sensex Slides 700 Points; Bitcoin Surges Past $19,000
India’s equity benchmark retreated from a record as an early rally in Asian equities faltered.
The S&P BSE Sensex ended 1.6% or 695 points lower at 43,828.
The NSE Nifty 50 index fell nearly 300 points from its record high to end 1.5% lower at 12,858.
All sectoral indices ended lower with the exception of the PSU Bank index.
Follow the day’s trading action here.
7. Pandemic Pushed Taj Hotels To Cut Costs
Indian Hotels Co., the luxury hotel chain run by the Tata Group, used the coronavirus-imposed lockdown to see where it could save costs.
“This was the historic opportunity to review our fixed and variable costs,” Chief Executive Officer Puneet Chhatwal said in a Bloomberg Television interview.
“The industry never experienced such a revenue decline in last 100 years,” he said.
Find out how the owner of the iconic Taj battled the pandemic-impact.
8. India’s Animal Spirits Show Signs Of Revival
India’s economy showed more signs of a recovery taking hold in October, increasing the likelihood it will exit a pandemic-induced recession in the final quarter of this year.
Demand during the festival season helped boost three of the eight high-frequency indicators tracked by Bloomberg News last month, while three were unchanged and two deteriorated.
That kept the needle on a dial measuring so-called ‘Animal Spirits’ steady at 5 -- a level arrived at by using the three-month weighted average to smooth out volatility in the single-month readings.
Here are key details from India’s economic scorecard in October.
9. South India Braces For Cyclone Nivar
Storm Nivar over the Bay of Bengal is likely to turn into a “very severe cyclone” by Wednesday night and may cause widespread damage to crops, mud houses and electricity poles in some southern Indian states.
The storm, which is likely to have a sustained wind speed of 120 to 130 kilometers per hour, will cross Tamil Nadu and Puducherry coasts between Wednesday midnight and early hours of Nov. 26, according to the India Meteorological Department.
The wind speed may even rise to as much as 145 kilometers, it said in a statement.
Heavy rain is expected in some areas of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh for two days.
The cyclone will be intense enough to damage crops, plantations, trees, mud houses and communication and electric poles.
10. ‘You’re Not Like Other Muslims’ And Other Islamophobic Indianisms
Islamophobia is everywhere, on Twitter, when you’re house hunting, in a discussion with friends, at parties, in the midst of a divorce, because you expressed an opinion and, of course, in that all-time favourite ‘compliment’, writes Priya Ramani.
As Covid-19 deaths in Delhi climb to more than 100 every day, and a faltering economy results in record unemployment, Indians only want to discuss why Muslim men shouldn’t marry Hindu women.
There’s no shortage of everyday humiliations as we find ourselves free to air bigoted thoughts with zero consequences.
If only we tried half as hard to highlight the love as haters do the hate, we might have a chance at winning this battle.
Otherwise, we’ll just have to be mute witnesses to the pain that comes from being the recipient of all this hate.