Your Daily Wrap: India surpasses UK to become world’s 5th largest economy; ED raids PayTM, Razorpay and Cashfree; and more

India has surpassed Britain to become the fifth-largest economy in the world, according to the latest calculations by Bloomberg. The calculation is based in US dollars, and India extended its lead in the first quarter, according to GDP figures from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). According to Bloomberg’s forecast, thanks to India’s fast-growing economy, there is likely to be a huge gap between India and the UK within the next few years. A look at five charts that put this development into perspective.

The Enforcement Directorate today raided premises associated with PayTM, Razorpay and Cashfree, payment gateways that allegedly facilitated transactions on loan apps unauthorisedly run by Chinese-owned companies. Some of these companies are also said to be involved in illegal betting. The ED is investigating a case where non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) and their fintech partners allegedly resorted to predatory lending practices, in violation of RBI guidelines.

Every year, the 10-day Ganesha festival in Maharashtra sets the stage for political leaders meeting each other, setting aside ideological differences. This year, however, one such meeting between Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and senior Congress leader Ashok Chavan has left state political circles abuzz. This week, both Fadnavis and Chavan arrived at BJP strategist Ashish Kulkarni’s residence at the same time on Thursday. While the official reason cited by the leaders was that it was a courtesy visit during Ganesh Utsav, the meeting fuelled rumours of political defections and power games. Read Shubhangi Khapre’s report.

During a Town Hall address in Gujarat’s Surendranagar, Delhi chief minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) president Arvind Kejriwal said his party will continue to provide ‘freebies’ to the public. “The BJP can do whatever it wants about it,” Kejriwal said, while also appealing to BJP workers to join the AAP ahead of the upcoming Assembly elections in Gujarat. Kejriwal also promised that if the AAP were voted to power, Rs 10 lakh will be provided to every panchayat from state government coffers. He also promised a fixed monthly salary of Rs 10,000 for sarpanches. Taking a dig at Kejriwal’s poll promises, BJP MP  and Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha national president Tejasvi Surya said the youth of Gujarat will not give an inch of space to ‘revdi’ (freebies) politics and bevdi (drunk) politics” of the AAP.

NASA is set to make its second attempt to launch the Artemis I rocket today, at 2:17pm Florida time (11:47 pm IST). But the new moon rocket sprang another hazardous leak, as the lanch team began fuelling it for liftoff on a test flight that must go well before astronauts climb aboard. The initial launch attempt on August 29 had to be called off due to technical issues including a problem with one of the rocket’s four main engines. Follow us as we bring to you live updates on the launch.

Political Pulse

While quitting all her posts and responsibilities in the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation, Kavita Krishnan said that she needed to “pursue certain troubling questions” that were “not possible to explore” in her party fold. Among such questions highlighted by Krishnan are those pertaining to the Indian communists’ alleged failings in putting up a vigorous and consistent fight for protection of democracy and civil liberties against “fascism and growing totalitarianism” in India, and in flagging their subversion in “totalitarian socialist regimes” like China and Stalin’s USSR that manifested in invasion of Ukraine by Russia earlier this year. “There is a need to protect people from the power of the State – once we clearly acknowledge that, only then can we protect the rights of the people,’’ said Krishnan while speaking to The Indian Express.

Express Explained

Attorney General of India K K Venugopal has declined a request for consent to initiate criminal contempt of court proceedings against Senior Advocate and Member of Parliament Kapil Sibal for certain remarks that he made during a speech on the subject of “Judicial Rollback of Civil Liberties” on August 6. “No part of the statements cast any blame or aspersion upon the court,” the A-G said in his opinion rejecting the request made by advocate Vineet Jindal. What is contempt of court, and why is the consent of the A-G required to proceed in a matter of alleged contempt? We explain.

India and Pakistan will meet on a cricket ground again. This time in the Super 4 stage of the 2022 Asia Cup. The two teams qualified from Group A, with India winning both of their matches and Pakistan beating Hong Kong on Friday by a whooping 155 runs, dismissing them for 38. But this time, aside from their players, Rohit Sharma and Babar Azam would also want to manage the over rate more proactively. Here’s why.

Weekend Reads

‘March to Freedom’: Exhibition re-interprets India’s freedom movement ‘beyond politics, politicians and battles’

The beauty of Hardik Pandya: When bold and bizarre is actually brilliant

The complex legacy of Mikhail Gorbachev: The global leader Russia needed but did not want

Way before Ranbir Kapoor’s coming-of-age movies, Jaya Bachchan truly embodied the carpe diem spirit in Uphaar

Brainwashed into becoming No.1: Serena Williams’ childhood coach Rick Macci traces her journey from nine-years old to World No.1

ICYMI: Here’s a list of best news reports, Opinion, Explained, and features from The Indian Express this week.

The complete story of INS Vikrant, and why India already wants to build another aircraft carrier

3 days, 3 murders, similar style — serial killer chill down an Madhya Pradesh town’s spine

Pandora Papers probe: Most foreign jurisdictions respond to FIU queries

Rubble to tiles and bricks — how Supertech twin tower debris will be recycled

As Gautam Adani becomes the world’s third richest person, a look at the Adani Group’s rise and spread


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