The Indian Express


Head Line: World Bank, UN, SIDBI launch Rs 300 crore Women’s Livelihood Bond

1) Prelims:

  • Mains Paper II: Development processes and the development industry —the role of NGOs, SHGs, various groups and associations, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders.

Why in news:

  • World Bank, UN Women, and Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) have joined hands to launch a new social impact bonds exclusively for women, called Women’s Livelihood Bonds (WLBs), with an initial corpus of Rs 300 crore.

What is Women’s Livelihood Bond:

  • The proposed bond will enable individual women entrepreneurs in sectors like food processing, agriculture, services and small units to borrow around Rs 50,000 to Rs 3 lakh at an annual interest rate of around 13-14 per cent or less.
  • The bonds, which will have a tenure of five years, will be launched by SIDBI with the support of World Bank and UN Women.
  • SIDBI will act as the financial intermediary and channel funds raised to women entrepreneurs through participating financial intermediaries like banks, NBFCs or microfinance institutions.
  • The WLBs will be unsecured, unlisted bonds and offer fixed coupon rate of 3 per cent per annum to bond investors.
  • Some of the top wealth management firms like Centrum, ASK, Ambit and Aditya Birla Capital, among others, have reached out to high net worth individuals and impact investors to raise the funds.

How the bond will be utilise for women empowerment:

  • The first tranche of Rs 100 crore at 3 per cent per annum coupon rate per annum will be mobilised over the next four months through a bond placement by Sidbi.
  • Similar tranches with a targeted cumulative amount of Rs 300 crore will be subsequently placed by Sidbi,” said Mohammad Mustafa, Chairman and MD, SIDBI.
  • The new bonds will not only enable women self help groups to graduate from ‘group borrowing’ to ‘individual borrowing’ but will also allow them to shift from development assistance towards more market-financed programmes.


Head Line: Explained: How genetic structure of great white shark throws up clues for fighting cancer

2) Mains Paper III: Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life.

Why in news:

  • A major study has now decoded the Great White Sharks’ entire genome and found that it could hold new clues to the fight against cancer.

The study revealed:

  • The study revealed the genome’s huge size (1½ times the size of the human genome) and also a plethora of genetic changes that could be behind the long, evolutionary success of large sharks.
  • The researchers found indications of molecular adaptation in numerous genes with important roles in maintaining genome stability.
  • This is a mechanism that counteracts the accumulation of damage to the DNA of a species, thereby preserving the integrity of the genome.
  • The opposite phenomenon, genome instability, which results from accumulated DNA damage, is known to predispose humans to numerous cancers and age-related diseases.

Significance of study:

  • The discovery was significant because theoretically, the risk of developing cancer should increase with both the number of cells (large bodies) and an organism’s lifespan.
  • However, contrary to expectations, very large animals do not get cancer more often than humans, suggesting that they have evolved superior cancer-protective abilities.

There are still tons to be learned from these evolutionary marvels, including information that will potentially be useful to fight cancer and age-related diseases, and improve wound healing treatments in humans, as we uncover how these animals do it.

The Hindu








Times of India