01 February 2017 Current Affairs

Ashok Amritraj Appointed as UN in India Goodwill ambassador

Award winning Hollywood film producer and Wimbledon tennis player, Ashok Amritraj has been appointed United Nations in India Goodwill Ambassador for sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Mr. Amritraj is first ambassador for UN in India. He was also the former CEO of National Geographic Films. He is responsible to generate momentum and commitment to achieve the SDGs by 2030.

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Arun Jaitley introduced Economic Survey 2016-17 in Parliament

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on 31 January tabled the Economic Survey 2016-17 in Parliament budget session. The survey projects the economy to grow in the range of 6.75% to 7.50 in the next fiscal year 2017-18 in the post-demonetization year. The survey was prepared by chief economic adviser in the finance ministry Arvind Subramanian said the adverse impact of demonetization on GDP growth will be transitional.


Veteran Journalist Dileep padgaonkar died at 72

Senior journalist Dileep Padgaonkar died in a Pune hospital on 27 January. A former editor with the Times of India. Padgaonkar had diabetes and Kidney-related problems. He had began his career in journalism at the age of 24 as the Paris correspondent of  The Times of India. He was also the part of a three-member interlocutor’s team selected by the Center in 2010 to hold talks with people in Jammu & Kashmir.


UNICEF launches 3.3 bln USD to aid millions of Children

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) on 31 January launched an appeal of 3.3 billion US dollars to provide emergency assistance in 48 countries around the globe, against the backdrop of ever increasing number of children driven from their homes due to conflicts, disasters and climate changes. The United States is by far the top donor to UNICEF, followed by Germany, Britain and the European Commission.


Alok Verma joined as the new CBI Director

Alok Verma joined as the new CBI Director. As a director he will hold in this post for a period of two years. A three member committee comprising Prime Minister, Chief Justice and opposition leader in the Lok Sabha selected Mr. Alok Verma for this post.


Highlights of Union Budget 2017-18

1. For quick refund of tax returns time-frame reduced to 12 months

2. Of 76 lakh individuals who reported income of over Rs 5 lakh, 56 lakh are salaried

3. No transaction over Rs 3 lakh will be permitted in cash

4. To cut presumptive turnover threshold for companies w/turnover up to Rs 2 cr to 6%

5. Basic customs duty on LNG cut to 2.5% from 5%

6. Propose to reduce tax for small companies with turnover of < Rs 50 cr to 25%

7. Govt proposes carry-forward of MAT to 15 years from 10 years

8. Post demonetisation deposits between Rs 2.80 lakh made in 1.09 crore accounts

9. FY18 revenue deficit pegged at 1.9% of GDP

10. Fiscal deficit for 2017-18 pegged at 3.2%, in-line with market expectations

11. Defence capital expenditure: Rs 86,000 core

12. New FDI policy under consideration

13. Aadhaar Pay will be launched shortly

14. Propose revised mechanism for time-bound listing of PSUs

15. Govt doubles lending target of banks to Rs 2.44 lakh cr

16. Amend Negotiable Instruments Act to protect payees of dishonoured cheques

17. Govt to take steps to promote digital payments at petrol pumps, hospitals

18. Propose to create a payment regulatory board at RBI

19. Propose to create an integrated oil major

20. Budget 2017: Focus on welfare, infra with fiscal prudence

21. Service charges on e-tickets booked via IRCTC to be withdrawn

22. New Metro Rail policy to be announced; will open up new job possibilities.

23. New rules for pricing medical devices should benefit common man.

24. Railways to implement end-to-end solutions for some commodities.

25. Propose to feed 7000 solar railway station in medium term

26. 2000 km of coastal roads have been identified for development.

27. AAI Act to be amended to enable monetisation of land.

28. Cash less reservation have improved to 68% from 58%.

29. National highway allocation at Rs 64,000 crore

30. Affordable housing to be given infra status

31. Have hiked allocation for women skill development to Rs 1.84 lakh crore in FY18.

32. Mahila Shakti Kendras will aim for Woman Empowerment

33. Govt to set up 100 India-International skill centres

34. Mahila Shakti Kendra will be set up at village level; allocation Rs 500 crore

35. 5 special tourism zones to be set up in partnership with states

36. Unmanned Rail level crossing will be eliminated by 2020

37. At least 25 stations re-development contracts will be awarded in 2017-18.

38. Propose to invest Rs 1.31 lakh crore in Railways in 2017-18.

39. Total capital development outlay for Railway at Rs 1.3 lakh cr.

40. Railways to implement end-to-end solutions for some commodities

41. Propose to feed 7000 solar railway station in medium term

42. Railway throughput to be enhanced by 10%.

43. Pilot project for Aadhar cards containing health details for senior citizens.

44. Govt to undertake reforms in UGC to improve higher education.

45. New rules regarding medical devices will be formulated; will attract investment in sector, will reduce cost of the devices

46. Outcome-based monetary measures to SC, ST by NITI Aayog

47. Allocation to scheduled castes upped to Rs 52,393 crore

48. Govt to set up 100 India-International skill centres

49. Outcome-based monetary measures to SC, ST by NITI Aayog

50. Govt committed to ensuring conducive labour environment

51. Will take legislative reforms to simplify labour laws in India

52. Govt committed to take structural reform in medical education & practice

53. Propose to amend drug rules to ensure drugs available at reasonable prices

54. 1.5 lakh health sub-centres to be transformed to health wellness centres

55. Will encourage reputed hospitals to start courses

56. Affordable housing to be given infra status

57. Bank lending rates for housing loans coming down in wake of demonetisation, says      FM

58.Innovation fund for secondary education to be created

59. Sanitation coverage in rural areas risen to 60% vs 42% earlier

60. On our way to achieve 100% village electrification by 1st May 2018

61. Govt to achieve 100% rural electrification by May 1, 2018

62. Rs 4,800 crore allocated under Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana

63. Propose to finish 1 crore houses by 2019 for those living in kachcha houses

64. To up crop insurance coverage to 50% in FY19

65. Pace of construction of roads has increased to Rs 133 km/day in 2017

66. Long-term irrigation fund set up in NABARD, additional corpus Rs 20,000 cr

67. MNREGA target at 48000 cr in FY18

68. Participation of women in NREGA has increased to 55% from 48% in the past.

69. Govt to set up dairy processing fund

70. Pace Of Construction Of Roads Has Increased To Rs 133 Km/Day In 2017

71. Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana construction at 133 km per day now against 73 km per day earlier

72. Increased allocation to Rs 23,000 crore for PM Awas Yojana,

73. 19000 cr allotted for PM Rural road plan in FY18

74. Will undertake reforms in UGC to improve higher education

75. Total allocation for rural sector up by 24% at Rs 1,83000 cr.

76. Allocation for rural, agri & allied industry at Rs 1.87 lakh crore, up 24% YoY

77. Coverage of national agriculture market will be expanded.

78. Dairy processing infra fund will be created with corpus of Rs 8,000 crore in 3 yrs

79. Long term irrigation fund set up in NABARD, additional corpus Rs 20,000 cr

80. Will support NABARD to digitise 63,000 primary agri co-operatives

81. 5000 cr worth dedicated micro irrigation fund to be set up by NABARD

82. Will take steps to make sure farmers get better prices for harvest

83. Sowing farmers should feel secure against natural calamities

84. To up crop insurance coverage to 50% in FY19

85. Will ensure flow of adequate credit to under privileged areas

86. Committed to double farmer income in five years

87. Propose to present Budget under 10 district themes

88. Agriculture expected to grow at 4.1% in the current year

89. Target for agri credit fixed at Rs 10 lakh crore this year

90. Overall approach has been to spend more with fiscal prudence

91. Looking to spend more on rural infrastructure and social spending

92. Overall approach in Budget has been to spend more in rural areas

93. Have done away with planned & unplanned allocation

94. Merger of Rail & General Budget is a historic step

95. IMF estimates world GDP will grow by 3.4% in 2017

96.Govt reduces existing tax rate for personal income of Rs 2.5-5 lakh to 5% from 10%

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