Shock and awe: Note ban, Jio launch, GST & other headline grabbers of 2016

Business Standard recaps the most prominent economic and corporate developments of the year

By almost any yardstick the year has been unique: Public policy, business rivalries and implosions, court verdicts and corporate malfeasance set new standards of shock and awe that will reverberate well into 2017.

Business Standard recaps the most prominent of economic corporate developments


In terms of disruptive impact, this was a decision with few parallels in Indian policy-making. On November 8 evening, just as Donald Trump recorded an unlikely victory in the US presidential polls, Prime Minister Narendra Modi came on national television to announce the withdrawal of legal tender status to Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, taking roughly 86 per cent of currency out of circulation. Citizens were given time till

December 30 to deposit old notes, but draconian withdrawal controls were put in place.

It was not just ordinary Indians who were caught unawares by this decision, which was initially explained as a route to staunching black money and terror finance. The government and Reserve Bank of India (RBI), too, seemed unprepared.  For one, the new Rs 500 and Rs 2,000 notes required over 100,000 ATMs to be recalibrated, an exercise that could not begin till after the announcement was made in the interests of confidentiality. For another, the assumptions on which the decision was made played out so differently in reality, that 60 notifications have been issued over one and a half months imposing new conditions or reversing other ones.    

The Tata-DoCoMo controversy

Goods and Services Tax

The RIL-ONGC spat

Nikesh Arora’s exit from SoftBank

The Singur verdict

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