Sri Lanka Crisis

The Sri Lanka Crisis is taking a new turn everyday. After days of protests, the Sri Lankan PM Mahinda Rajapaksa has resigned from his post. This is a partial victory for the protestors who are demanding for the president, Gotabaya Rajapaksa to step down as well. To maintain order, emergency powers have been invoked to control the ever-increasing anti-government protests.

The situation is so bleak that people are even facing a dearth of essential items including medicines. In addition, power cuts up to 12 hours are imposed in several areas of the island country.

Several factors led to the crisis ranging from the country’s lucrative tourism struck by Covid to the government’s decision to ban the usage of chemical fertilizers and move towards organic farming amid the pandemic. As of February, country was left with only $2.31 billion as reserves and a huge debt repayment of $4 billion due this year. China is the largest lender followed by Japan and India. After long resisting, the government approached the IMF in April. In an article by Business Standard ,IMF stated “Going forward, the IMF team will support Sri Lanka’s efforts to overcome the current economic crisis by working closely with the authorities on their economic program, and by engaging with all other stakeholders in support of a timely resolution of the crisis. “Earlier in 2022, President Rajapaksa asked China to restructure repayments on around $3.5bn of debt owed to Beijing. India also came forward to help by signing a deal with China, i.e.  $1 billion credit line for importing essentials, including food and medicine. “As a close neighbor of Sri Lanka, with historical ties, India is fully supportive of its democracy, stability and economic recovery,” External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said.”India will always be guided by the best interests of the people of Sri Lanka expressed through democratic processes,” the MEA spokesperson said.

The Fall of Anil Ambani

The fall of Anil Ambani changed the course for many entrepreneurs in India. Dhirubhai Ambani was a business tycoon who had two sons, Mukesh Ambani and Anil Ambani, who studied from best schools and colleges while their father built a huge empire. Anil Ambani used to be a share market player and therefore was more famous and growing than Mukesh Ambani. All the financial matters were taken care by Anil and the industrial affairs by Mukesh at the time of Dhirubhai Ambani. After their father’s demise, there was equal distribution of wealth and heated arguments began to take place regarding the distribution and maintenance of business. In 2005, two parts of Reliance from which Mukesh got companies like Reliance Petrochemicals and Anil got Telecommunications, Financial Services and Energy business. Both grew separately and got their names in the Forbes list 2007. Anil Ambani standing at whopping 45 billion dollars and brother Mukesh at 49 billion dollars. In 2008, after the public issue of Reliance power people thought that Anil would outgrow Mukesh Ambani. Today, Mukesh Ambani stands at 6.24L crores and Anil Ambani at only 600 crores. How did this happen ?
Anil had Power, Telecom and real estate and had interest in Telecom as he thought that this will be the future of India. Reliance Communication, in 2002 started by name Reliance Info Comm, chose CDMA which turned out to be the biggest mistake because it was limited to 2G and 3G networks when global market introduced 4G and 5G networks. To stay in market, Reliance Communications took huge loans from different banks. In 2008, Reliance communications got the spectrum but till that time it had a huge debt of 25,000 crores. Mukesh Ambani gave the final blow to Anil after the termination of 5 year non-compete agreement by entering the telecommunication market in 2010. By 2016, Jio flushed down not only Anil Ambani but other telecom companies as well like Airtel and Vodafone. Above all this, Anil Ambani got trapped in 2G spectrum scam of 200,000 crores. In 2015, Anil Ambani tried to enter the defense industry and bought ‘Pipavav Defense’ and this company already had 7000 crore debt which increased to 10,700 crores after which IDBI bank and IFCI bank dragged it to National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT). In 2018, Ericsson sued Reliance Communications for a debt of 1,100 crores and the Supreme Court clearly decided that if Anil Ambani fails to return the debt in 1 month, he will have to go to jail. Mukesh Ambani stepped in to help his brother from not going to jail. After this Anil Ambani announced his exit from telecom industry. In 2020, Reliance Communications debt reached 50,000 crores (26,000 crores of Indian banks). All the assets of the company were sent for auction where the highest bidder were Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Infratel and ARCL. Three banks of China, Industrial and Commercial Bank China (ICBC), China Development Bank (CDB) and Export-Import Bank of China (EIBC). filed a case against Anil Ambani in London Court for $708 million. Reliance Power also faced damage because of Anil Ambani’s bad decisions. Central Government took Reliance Powers to Supreme Court in 2010 for gas prices issue. Supreme Court judgment ruled in favor of Central Government and said that gas is a national resource and Anil Ambani has to buy gas on market price. After this the share price of Reliance Powers dropped drastically. Except Reliance Communications, other businesses like Reliance Capital and Reliance Infrastructure still have 20,739 crores loans out of which only Reliance Infrastructure is cleared. Anil Ambani’s journey from $42 billion to only 600 crores was an eye opener for the nation. Anil Ambani has declared himself bankrupt in most of the courts but still is in the market as Reliance Capital and Reliance Infrastructure are operating and in better position than before.

The Twitter-Musk Deal

Elon Musk on April 25 strike the deal to shop for the microblogging platform, Twitter for $44 billion. Mr Musk but 2 weeks ago had said that Twitter has “tremendous potential” and being a free speech supporter, himself tweeted that he shall aim to form the platform more inclusive and vowed to relax content restrictions, eradicate fake accounts, enhance the merchandise with new features and make the algorithms open source to extend trust.

What changes shall twitter undergo under Musk?

By the top of this year, Twitter shares are going to be delisted and it’ll be taken private. He suggested to include an edit button by conducting a poll asking his twitter followers if they need one to which 73.6% indicated that they are doing . additionally to the present , he has suggested Twitter could make the algorithm open source to enable users to ascertain if a tweet has been demoted or promoted so there are not any behind the scenes manipulation. Musk has also proposed changes in Twitter’s subscription service Twitter Blue stating that it could integrate Dogecoin as an alternate sort of payment for the service.

Reactions as Elon Musk reaches the deal

While the Ex CEO Jack-Dorsey Called Musk “Singular Solution” for twitter, the present CEO Parag Agrawal told employees that the longer term of the firm is uncertain. For now, the CEO is staying to ascertain the method conclude. He would get an estimated $42 million if he were terminated within 12 months. Elon Musk said that he hopes even his strongest critics stay the platform, yet some users like Jameela Jamil, best known for her role in TV series “The Good Place “has already quit Twitter citing her reason that that platform may become “even more lawless, hateful, xenophobic, bigoted, misogynistic space.” Being a high-profile Twitter user, Musk is additionally a controversial one. the longer term of twitter can go either way, only time will tell what lies ahead.