Panama Papers Leak: An investigation by the international consortium of investigative journalists (ICIJ) and more than 100 news organizations around the globe has revealed alleged offshore links of some of the planet’s most prominent people. The list included over 500 Indians. In India, the Indian express ran several pages of the investigation reports alleging among other names that Bollywood superstars Amitabh Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai were directors in companies in panama.
Also named were sameer Gehlaut of India bulls, for properties owned in Bahamas, Jersey and the United Kingdom, and KP Singh of DLF for companies registered in British Virgin Islands. Vinod Adani, elder brother of industrialist Gautama Adani, politician shishir Bajoria from west Bengal and Anurag Kejriwal of Loksatta Party were also alleged to have set up companies in tax havens. They also provide details of the hidden financial dealings of 128 other politicians and public officials around the world and show how a global industry of law firms and big banks sells financial secrecy to fraudsters and drug traffickers as well as billionaires, celebrities and sports stars.
The panama paper exposes offshore companies controlled by the prime ministers of Iceland and Pakistan, the king of Saudi Arabia and the children of the president of Azerbaijan. They also include the names of at least 33 people and companies blacklisted by the US government because of evidence that they’ve done business with Mexican drug lords, terrorist organizations like Hezbollah or rogue nations, including North Korea and Iran. Several countries have launched tax evasion probes after a massive leak of confidential documents lifted the lid on the murky offshore financial dealings of a slew of politicians and celebrities.
US Gulf Cooperation Council Summit:
The US Gulf Cooperation council (GCC) summit was held on April 21 in Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia. US president Barack Obama attended this summit. Growing influence of Iran in this region and IS activities were main issues of discussions. Obama reaffirmed the US policy to use all elements of its power to secure its core interests in the Gulf region and to deter and confront external aggression against its allies and partners.
All the Leaders were committed both to the fight against Islamic state and to de-escalating regional conflicts, and addressed the Gulf countries concerns on Iran. The Middle East is mired in a contest for influence between a bloc of mostly Sunni countries, including the conservative, pro-western Gulf monarchies, and Shi’ite Iran and its allies. Most GCC States have been disappointed in Obama’s presidency, during which they believe the US has pulled back from the region, giving more space to Iran.
World Tigers Count:
The latest figures of global tiger population were released on April 11. After decades of constant decline, the world has for the first time seen an increase in the global tiger population. The number of tigers in the wild has increased from 3,200 in 2010 to 3,890 in April this year’s an increase of nearly 22% with India continuing to be home to the highest number of big cats. The of tigers will turn out to be even more once one of the tiger range counties, Myanmar, comes out with its latest data. Myanmar had 85 tigers roaming its jungles in 2010.
Since there is no recent data available for the country, the Global wild Tiger Status report has not included the country’s figure in the overall global figure. The updated minimum figure is compiled from International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) data and the latest national tiger surveys. The report has attributed the increase in world tiger population to multiple factors including increases in tiger populations in India, Russia, Nepal and Bhutan, improved surveys and enhanced protection. India alone recorded an increase of over 500 tigers during the period.