Current Affairs Current Affairs - 17 May 2015 - Vikalp Education

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Current Affairs - 17 May 2015

Modi-Li selfie dubbed 'most power-packed selfie in history'
  • Modi-Li selfie dubbed 'most power-packed selfie in history'NEW YORK: The iconic selfie taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Chinese premier Li Keqiang during his current visit to China is being hailed by western media as one of the most "power-packed selfie in history".

    The Wall Street Journal, in a news report titled 'Did Modi Just Take the Most Powerful Selfie in History,' said that the prime ministers of the world's two biggest countries "leaned on each other ...for what may be the most politically power-packed selfie in history."

    It said Modi pulled out a smartphone during his visit to Beijing's Temple of Heaven, "extended his arm and cozied up with Chinese premier Li Keqiang for the shot.

    "That put two of the most powerful people in countries with a combined population of around 2.5 billion people - more than one-third of humanity - in the same frame with no official photographer involved," the WSJ report said.

    An article in Forbes said that the selfie, which garnered 2,200 shares within two hours of Modi posting it on his Twitter account, is being "billed the selfie of the world's two mightiest".

    "Modi and Li drive economic policy in their respective countries, two of the world's fastest-growing large economies," the Forbes article said.

    The Indian Prime Minister is one of the world's most followed on Twitter with 12.3 million followers.

    A tweet from news outlet CNBC said that "two world leaders just took the most-powerful selfie ever.

    "The leaders of two of the world's fastest growing countries just made selfie history....Sure, a picture can say a thousand words--but it's not every day one can speak for over a third of the world's population," the CNBC report said. It added that combining GDP from both countries, the selfie captures more than USD 10 trillion.

    The Wall Street Journal noted that the Indian Prime Minister is "no stranger to selfies" and had used one in his 2014 election campaign.

    Modi was also the first world leader to use a Twitter Mirror, an exclusive app that produces autographed selfies and posts them to Twitter on his tours, it said.

    Modi has taken selfies with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott during a visit to his country in November.

    The report cited other powerful selfies that have created records of their own, including the 2014 Oscar selfie taken by host Ellen DeGeneres with Hollywood giants Meryl Streep, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Lupita Nyong'o, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie Pitt. The selfie received more than 921,000 retweets in less than 40 minutes and went on to get more than a million retweets.

    In 2013, US President Barack Obama and Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron posed for a selfie with Denmark's Prime Minister Helle Thorning Schmidt at a memorial service for Nelson Mandela in South Africa, an image that however was criticised by some who said it was inappropriate for the leaders to take a selfie at such a solemn occasion.

Modi govt shuns fast-forward, goes slow and steady
  • Modi govt shuns fast-forward, goes slow and steady
    He was supposed to mount a fullscale assault on the government, or rather, the establishment. An outsider who resented the imperious ways of the Delhi Durbar and having stormed the Capital in defiance of the Lutyens zone elite, Narendra Modi was expected to be an insurrection. 

    A year on, predictions of an Indian version of dismantling of the "system" akin to Mikhail Gorbachev's perestroika, haven't come true. 

    Instead, the style he has adopted fits more with the description of "change with continuity" that sociologists have for decades used to describe India's cautious flirting with modernity. 

    The abolition of the Planning Commission and the creation of Niti Aayog served more as a statement of annoyance with the Nehruvian model, rather than the first of a series of steps needed to bring down the edifice the first PM raised and his legatees sustained. 

    The plan to club ministries was given up for the compulsion of accommodating a fraction of the army swept into Parliament in the Modi "tsunami". The preference for cautious gradualism extends to the policy realm. 

    Persistence with the land Bill, disregarding "pro-rich" insinuations of opponents and some misgivings within, about the political cost of pushing for accelerated industrialization, was bold. 

    The attempt to rewrite labour laws, almost unanimously seen as a hindrance to faster growth, represents a courageous, if risky, stab at status quo. 

    But Modi's refusal to succumb to the temptation to earn brownie points from reforms hawks, balances this out. 

    If reforms enthusiasts are disappointed, the welfare lobby — they'd be loath to admit it — is confused. MNREGA remains, belying propaganda that it'd be scrapped. 

    The fear generated by certain quarters that prices of essential drugs won't be capped has been proved wrong. The government has moved to control prices of diagnostic devices too, a measure at odds with Modi's depiction as a free-market fanatic. 

    The record hike in tax devolution to states clashes with his portrayal as a control freak, raring to force his Gujarat model down each gullet. 
    Modi's been attacked for the pronouncements of hotheads. But expectations of the man — the poster boy of hardline Hindutva — that he'd ensure moderation, points to his mainstreaming, and his need for governance may have trumped any desire to play to the gallery of radicals. 

    The government's response to Pakistani provocations has more than matched the "tit-for-tat" response he'd promised. As a matter of fact, it's been disproportionate. Reliable accounts point to PMO's direct involvement. But Modi, ignoring taunts of cowardliness, shied away from advertising it. He showed out-of-the-box pragmatism, inviting heads of SAARC governments to his inauguration. 

    All this contrasted with the bellicosity usually associated with Sangh Parivar. 

    He overcame personal US slights to invite Barack Obama for Republic Day and to make the nuclear agreement work. 

    He snubbed inhouse China experts and reached out to Beijing, emphasizing common Buddhist heritage. 

    He leveraged the growing presence and profile of NRIs as a foreign policy tool and brushed aside Assam BJP's reservations to conclude the land boundary agreement with Bangladesh. 

    The Yemen evacuation and swift response to the Nepal earthquake added to his heft. 

    Any fear that he, with his alleged provincial mindset, won't be able to handle foreign policy has been stilled. Modi's personal stamp on foreign policy is visible, marking the restoration of the PMO's authority after a decade. He's been the driver for major policy initiatives, goading and pressuring ministries to meet PMO-set targets. 

    The initial yet impressive steps towards creating a social security infrastructure are all the PM's efforts. 

    The PMO's return has caused concern over centralization of decision-making and the risks of a lack of initiative by ministries. Vacancies in key departments underscore this point. Any arrangement based on the individual as paramount, carries the risk of the leader getting walled off from honest feedback and warnings against mistakes like sporting a monogrammed suit. 

    But the system has worked so far. Modi, with his stamina and unrelenting focus, has compensated for BJP's narrow talent pool and weak bench strength. His vigilance is the reason why government has been bereft of the taint of big corruption, an achievement that contrasts with scandals under the previous regimes. 

    Power brokers may not have disappeared but certainly find it difficult to convince clients that they can still deliver. The tight grip, illustrated by the near-total absence of leaks, will be crucial for hastening delivery and prove that "acche din" was no political stunt. With one year gone it is performance, not oratory, that'll help him win elections and maintain the hold he has over government and party.

The Shah show: Five big hits & one flop
  • The Shah show: Five big hits & one flopBJP's performance in the year beginning with the formation of the Modi government is in two parts: Before the Delhi debacle and after. The first phase was marked by euphoria over Narendra Modi, helped by Amit Shah, propelling the party to its first-ever majority at the Centre. Electoral successes in Haryana, Maharashtra, J&K and Jharkhand, with the continuing collapse of Congress, cemented BJP's claim to being number one.

    Add to that, the stunning LS result in UP. Shah, after taking over as BJP president, seemed to be hitting the right buttons. This was when the risks the party took, whether in standing up to Shiv Sena in Maharashtra or in going it alone in Haryana, paid off. The winning spree and triumphalism exacted a cost eventually in the form of complacency. Because of which BJP failed to appreciate something as simple and stark as holding polls in Delhi when it was still in Modi's thrall and opponents struggling to recover from the 7-0 drubbing.

    Arvind Kejriwal pounced on the gift and, helped by other tactical errors that a smug BJP committed during the campaign, inflicted a defeat as humiliating as it suffered in the 1984 Lok Sabha elections when it could win just two seats. The disaster sparked predictions of the beginning of the fall, commentators finding faults with the Modi-Shah duopoly. Shah, feted not long ago as the man with the Midas touch, now faced charges of centralizing powers, neglecting elders, thrusting a work culture alien to the party ethos and other "sins".

    The pundits who'd rushed to predict a permanent saffron ascendancy, and others who could not see the leadership doing anything post-Delhi, are wrong. Fact is that the stunning LS performance had only partly to do with the party. The feat was pulled off because Modi, helped tirelessly by loyalists like Shah, RSS workers and favourable ratings of BJP's CMs, turned the appeal into votes with an extraordinarily energetic campaign.

    Modi's pull was, again, the principal reason why Shah succeeded in taking the party to pole position in Jharkhand. But the dizzying spell was too good to last indefinitely, more so because BJP suffered from organizational atrophy. The Modi groundswell hid the weaknesses which came to the fore soon after the NaMo wave ebbed. Shah miscalculated when he thought he could overcome the drawbacks reviving old mass-contact tactics. His diagnosis about organizational decay - driver of his ambitious membership campaign - was bang on. Shah is trying to turn BJP into an efficient poll machine that can hold its own independent of dips and spikes in the popularity of individual leaders. Such bold enterprises have often come to grief, but Shah cannot be accused of not trying hard.

    If he'll succeed will be known later, but his effort to turn the party into a force multiplier for Modi is evident. Under him, the party has made an honest effort to popularize government policies. His comfort level with RSS gives Modi leeway to implement reforms - from land acquisition bill to labour laws - and take diplomatic initiatives hardliners would've otherwise frowned upon. Shah's credentials as a hardliner and his equations with the Sangh are among principal reasons why Hindutva hawks have of late been quiet, providing Modi respite from criticism that he was indulgent of aggressive rhetoric and his focus had shifted from development. He stays in the background; this has helped Modi enhance his senior ministerial colleagues' comfort levels.

    The government looks more integrated with Modi motivating the team, generous with credit. Shah's run a tight ship and the benefits are evident from the near-disappearance of the once-familiar sight of party figures holding forth on all sundry topics, often at cross-purposes and at the party's cost. This attempt at discipline went to the other extreme with the party ceding media space to opponents on key issues. Remedial measures are underway in time for Bihar polls that Shah must win for his own sake and his boss's.

Solar power to meet metro rail’s 40% energy need
  • NAGPUR: The Nagpur Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (NMRCL) has decided to use solar power in a big way to run the service and wants to tie up with German government for technology and finance. The company wants to have installed capacity of 30 MW using the metro railway stations as sites for solar panels. This will meet 40% of the energy requirement including traction power. NMRCL will not spend a penny for generating this power. The project will be executed by an operator. 

    NMRCL managing director Brajesh Dixit told the media on Friday that German government was very positive about the project and a federal government agency GIZ had shown interest in giving the know-how for solar project for Nagpur metro. "KfW, a German government-owned bank, is willing to soft loan as well as providing technology for Nagpur metro's solar project. It is already funding solar projects in India in coordination with IREDA and union ministry of new and renewable energy (MNRE)," he said adding that European Investment Bank too was going through the proposal. 

    The MD said that German agencies had also showed readiness to fund the 3,000 crore needed for metro project. "If the French agency - FDA - does not provide 1,500 crore as agreed, Germany is ready to provide this sum too," he added. German agencies' teams will visit the city in May last week to evaluate the project. 

    Solar project will be executed by an operator. It will get soft loan from German agencies. "We will design the stations in such a way that solar panels fit into it. The operator will use the solar energy it generates for itself until the metro becomes functional. After that NMRCL will use the power. Nagpur will become the first one to use solar energy right from design stage," Dixit said. 

    Geotechnical survey from today 

    The geotechnical survey for the metro railway will begin from Saturday. This is done for finding out at what depth hard rock lies. Pits will be dug to get this data. The foundation of the pillars has to be designed accordingly. 

    Superintending engineer Purushottam Kadu said that the pits would be 3 metres deep and will be dug at every 100 metres. "The 37 km metro corridor will thus have 370 pits. The first two will be dug at Zero Mile and Mihan. The soil strata of the city is basically black cotton soil and hard rock is found at some depth," he said. 


    German agencies ready to provide funds as well as technology for metro's solar energy project 

    An operator will execute it using soft loans from German agencies 

    The solar panels will be installed on metro stations. Total installed capacity will be 30 MW 

    Feeder bus services planned on 19 routes. Total feeder length 160 km 

    Metro project will provide direct employment to 1,700 people 

    The tender for appointment of general consultant will be floated in June 

    German agencies ready to provide funds as well as technology for metro's solar energy project 

    An operator will execute it using soft loans from German agencies 

    The solar panels will be installed on metro stations. Total installed capacity will be 30 MW 

    Feeder bus services planned on 19 routes. Total feeder length 160 km 

After KO, Congress is dancing and punching in the ring again
  • It was a telling picture when Sonia Gandhi, amid the countdown to the Modi government's first anniversary, rose in the Lok Sabha to savage the Centre over corruption, probity, RTI, the whistleblowers Act and CVC. Surprised observers noted the new confidence in Congress, given that barely 11 months ago it was routed for all-pervasive graft. The UPA government it led got dubbed as most-corrupt ever. 

    Critics call it "gall", others "belief". But on the evidence of Congress's aggression in Parliament and outside, a party that faced an existential crisis not long ago - 44 MPs in the House of 543 - has dusted itself from the knockout blow. It's throwing punches in the ring again. Given the severity of the rout, few expected it to be back so soon. The single biggest factor in Congress's quick reinvention as opposition has been its ability to reconcile to the defeat. This contrasts with BJP's failure to adapt to shocking realities of the 'India Shining' debacle. The Congress cause seems facilitated by the sheer scale of its decimation. 

    In its rout, it has taken the easy route falling back on its "pro-poor" plank, painting the rival "pro-corporate". The strategy seems thought through, culled from a study of Modi's bizfriendly Gujarat stint. The party thinks the "pro-rich" epithet easily sticks on BJP and easier to sell politically in a country of poverty and regular calamities. Aiding Congress is its institutional memory of handling defeats. If it didn't give up as expected, it was because Indira Gandhi's rout in 1977 was touted as worse. Rajiv Gandhi's defeat over Bofors did not turn Congress into a terminal case. 

    All defeats could be tackled. Congress started attacking right from the start, on the offensive despite defeats in Maharashtra, Kashmir, Haryana and Delhi in the aftermath of the Big One. Reeling under the Delhi polls killer blow, it saw hope in the bloody nose that Modi-led BJP received. When BJP promulgated a probusiness land acquisition bill, Sonia turned it into a political taboo, scaring its potential supporters over the political costs. She seized leadership of a grouping of naysayers, evident in the 13-party protest march to Rashtrapati Bhavan. This helped the party reassert its role as lead opposition. Comforting Congress is Rahul Gandhi's return with the intent of long-term engagement. It lifted the mood of post-defeat uncertainty. 

    To insiders, the comeback via the sabbatical route is intelligent in its timing, rooted in Congress's early reconciliation with defeat. If Rahul is firing randomly in the Lok Sabha and on TV, and still finding the mark, it is because enough time has elapsed for people to lend an ear to the opposition. Six months ago, with distaste for Congress still fresh and Modi basking in his messianic glory, few wanted to hear the Congress or the Gandhis. So much so, Old Guard rumblings against Rahul seem to be waning. If anything, there are suggestions that he stay the course and exude the Gandhi gravitas. 

    A change of guard in Congress will complete the in-house restructuring that can let the party focus on rebuilding. But an aggressive Congress is not all positive. A young Gandhi at the helm of an eager GOP triggers wariness among regional parties who have Congress as principal rival. A BJD or AIADMK or Trinamool would be loath to be identified with Congress. It'll be a task for Rahul to keep regional satraps in Congress's company. For a party with a string of crushing defeats behind it and no victories in sight, it marks quite a recovery in the first year of the Modi era. 

Arvind Kejriwal asks Shakuntala Gamlin not to take charge as acting chief secy of Delhi
  • Arvind Kejriwal asks Shakuntala Gamlin not to take charge as acting chief secy of Delhi
    NEW DELHI: The confrontation between Delhi lt governor and the AAP government on Saturday intensified with chief minister Arvind Kejriwal asking senior bureaucrat Shakuntala Gamlin to not take charge as acting Chief Secretary of the city, a day after she was appointed to the post by Jung.
    A senior Delhi government official said that in his letter to Gamlin, Kejriwal has said that her appointment is against the set rule. In view of this, she should not take charge as acting chief secretary of Delhi.

    The move came a day after lt governor Najeeb Jung gave the additional charge of chief secretary to Gamlin, a 1984-batch IAS officer, hours after she wrote a scathing letter to Jung claiming that she was pressurised by a senior bureaucrat in CM's office not to be in race for the post due to her alleged proximity to BSES discoms.

    Slamming the LG's move, the AAP government had on Friday said the LG cannot bypass the elected government and chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and that he acted against "the Constitution, GNCT of Delhi Act and the Transaction of Business Rules."

    Jung had promptly rebutted the AAP government's allegations saying under Article 239 AA of the Constitution of India, saying the lt governor is the representative of State Authority in Delhi.

    Chief secretary K K Sharma has left for the US on a personal visit due to which the government had to appoint an acting chief secretary. Gamlin is currently serving as power secretary.

In first year, Modi govt cleared defence proposals worth Rs 1L crore
  • In first year, Modi govt cleared defence proposals worth Rs 1L croreNEW DELHI: The NDA government has cleared around 40 new defence acquisition proposals, worth over Rs 1 lakh crore, setting a scorching pace over the last one year. It has also revived several long-pending mega projects, which were virtually stuck in files during A K Antony's eight years at the helm in the defence ministry. 

    But the follow-through has been relatively slow to ensure the proposals swiftly head towards inking of actual contracts or turn into concrete projects on the ground. The new much-touted defence procurement policy (DPP) is yet to be finalised, there is still some uncertainty over the entire "Make in India" thrust, and the annual defence budget has not registered any concrete hike.

    "There is much faster decision-making at the top, either in approving or scrapping modernisation proposals. But the bureaucratic bottle-necks remain and the procedures are yet to be streamlined," said a senior official. 

    But a committee of civil and military experts, which includes former home secretary Dhirendra Singh and former MoD director-general of acquisitions Satish Agnihotri, is now reviewing the changes in the new proposed DPP.

    "Around 90% of the work has been done to drastically overhaul the DPP of 2013. It should be announced by July," said an official. The changes range from easing of norms for arms agents and blacklisting of armament companies to ways to simplify the cumbersome arms acquisition procedures and push the "Make in India" policy in defence production, as was earlier reported by TOI. 

    The MoD is also tightening screws on DRDO and its 50 labs, five defence PSUs, four shipyards and 39 ordnance factories to ensure they deliver on time in a cost-effective manner, apart from there being a determined push to encourage the private sector to enter defence production in a major way. 

    All this is certainly needed. Take, for instance, the long-pending project for construction of six new advanced stealth diesel-electric submarines in India with foreign collaboration. The defence acquisitions council in October last year gave the renewed green signal to this project, which had got "acceptance of necessity" for around Rs 50,000 crore way back in November 2007. The tender for the already long-delayed project is, however, still nowhere close to being issued seven months down the line. 

    But most agree there have also been some out-of-the-box solutions to address critical operational military deficiencies. The decision for outright purchase of 36 French Rafale fighters, which entailed the scrapping of the deadlocked $20 billion MMRCA (medium multi-role combat aircraft) project to acquire 126 such fighters, for instance, took many by surprise. 

    There is, however, still no clarity on whether the direct acquisition of 36 fighters will be followed by a "Make in India" component, as was originally envisaged in the MMRCA project. In fact, there are indications the government will just go in for around 20 more Rafales, and then stop at that. Defence minister Manohar Parrikar has himself held that acquisition of 126 fighters would have been "a very steep slope" to climb financially. 

Wipro sued in US by former employee over wage issues
  • BENGALURU: Wipro said it will defend all pending lawsuits against it after an Indian employee filed a class action complaint against it in a US court, alleging violation of local labour laws.

    Media reports indicated Wipro employee Suri Payala had recently filed a complaint in Superior Court of the State of California, alleging that Wipro failed to compensate him for over-time and make other wage settlements.

    According to the complaint, Payala worked with Wipro for the first six months of 2014 as a computer technician and was working on a project that US-based DirecTV outsourced to India's third-largest software exporter.

    Payala could not be reached for comment. Wipro in an email said while it would not comment on pending litigations, it would "vigorously defend these allegations."

    A Wipro spokesperson said, "Wipro abides by the laws of every jurisdiction where we do business."

    This is not the first time that an Indian IT firm has faced a lawsuit or class action complaint from former or current employees. 

Hillary and Bill Clinton earned more than $25 million for speeches since 2014
  • Hillary and Bill Clinton earned more than $25 million for speeches since 2014WASHINGTON: Hillary and Bill Clinton earned over $25 million for delivering more than 100 speeches since 2014, according to financial disclosure forms released by the Clinton campaign.

    Hillary Clinton, the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016, also earned $5 million in royalties for her book, "Hard Choices," which was released in June, according to the forms.

    The Clintons' income puts them at least in the top 0.1 per cent of the US population, the Wall Street Journal reported.

    Economic inequality has been a top campaign theme for Democrats for the past several years and Clinton in April voiced concern about the hefty paychecks of some corporate executives in an email to supporters.

    But the Clintons themselves have faced criticism for high speaking fees, which for Hillary Clinton have gone up to $250,000 since she left the helm of the State Department in 2013. Liberals have criticized her for taking money from financial institutions, including Goldman Sachs, for speeches they say make her beholden to big business.

    Last year, Hillary Clinton was criticized for saying she and her husband were "dead broke" when they left the White House in 2001, even though Bill Clinton made millions of dollars giving speeches after his presidency.

    Republican presidential contender Marco Rubio also filed disclosure forms with the Federal Election Commission, the Washington Post reported.

    They show the US senator from Florida owes at least $450,000 and as much as $1 mn on three mortgages, including a home equity line of credit, the newspaper said.

    His assets, which include checking and savings accounts, college funds for his children and a rental property in Tallahassee, are worth between $361,018 and $1,035,000.

    Presidential candidates are required to file the financial information with the FEC within 30 days of declaring their candidacy, although they can seek up to two 45-day extensions.

    Republican candidates Senators Ted Cruz of Texas and Rand Paul of Kentucky sought extensions rather than file on Friday, the Post reported.

          The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) is an international financial institution which offers loans to middle-income developing countries. The IBRD is the first of five member institutions which compose the World Bank Group and is headquartered in Washington, D.C., United States. It was established in 1944 with the mission of financing the reconstruction of European nations devastated by World War II. Together, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development and its concessional lending arm, the International Development Association, are collectively known as the World Bank as they share the same leadership and staff.
          The International Monetary Fund (IMF) (French : Fonds mon├ętaire international) is an international organization that was initiated in 1944 at the Bretton Woods Conference and formally created in 1945 by 29 member countries. The IMF's stated goal was to assist in the reconstruction of the world's international payment system post–World War II. Countries contribute money to a pool through a quota system from which countries with payment imbalances can borrow funds temporarily. Through this activity and others such as surveillance of its members' economies and the demand for self-correcting policies, the IMF works to improve the economies of its member countries Headquartered at Washington, D.C., United States.
          The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) (in French, Banque desr├Ęglements internationaux (BRI)) is an international organization of central banks which "fosters international monetary and financial cooperation and serves as a bank for central banks".As an international institution, it is not accountable to any single national government.
          The BIS carries out its work through subcommittees, the secretariats it hosts and through an annual general meeting of all member banks. It also provides banking services, but only to central banks and other international organizations. It is based in Basel, Switzerland, with representative offices in Hong Kong and Mexico City.
          The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is a regional development bank established on 22 August 1966 to facilitate economic development of countries in Asia.The bank admits the members of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP, formerly known as the United Nations Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East) and non-regional developed countries.From 31 members at its establishment, ADB now has 67 members - of which 48 are from within Asia and the Pacific and 19 outside. ADB
    was modeled closely on the World Bank, and has a similar weighted voting system where votes are distributed in proportion with member's capital subscriptions. Headquartered at Mandaluyong City, Metro Manila, Philippines.
          Export-Import Bank of India is the premier export finance institution of the country, established in 1982 under the Export-Import Bank of India Act 1981.
          Government of India launched the institution with a mandate, not just to enhance exports from India, but to integrate the country’s foreign trade and investment with the overall economic growth.
          Exim Bank is managed by a Board of Directors, which has representatives from the Government, Reserve Bank of India, Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India, a financial institution, public sector banks, and the business community. Headquarters is in Mumbai.
          The Finance Commission of India came into existence in 1951. It was established under Article 280 of the Indian Constitution by the President of India. It was formed to define the financial relations between the centre and the state. The Finance Commission Act of 1951 states the terms of qualification, appointment and disqualification, the term, eligibility and powers of the Finance Commission.
    Headquartered at New Delhi.
          The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is India's central banking institution, which controls the monetary policy of the Indian rupee. It was established on 1 April 1935 during the British Raj in accordance with the provisions of the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934.
          The RBI plays an important part in the development strategy of the Government of India. It is a member bank of the Asian Clearing Union.
          The bank is also active in promoting financial inclusion policy and is a leading member of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion (AFI).
          The Central Board of Directors is the main committee of the central bank. The Government of India appoints the directors for a four-year term. The Board consists of a governor, four deputy governors, fifteen directors to represent the regional boards, one from the Ministry of Finance and ten other directors from various fields.
    Offices and branches. Head quartered at Mumbai.
          The Reserve Bank of India has four zonal offices.It has 19 regional offices at most state capitals and at a few major cities in India. Few of them are located in Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Bhopal, Bhubaneswar, Chandigarh, Chennai, Delhi, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Jammu, Kanpur, Kolkata, Lucknow, Mumbai, Nagpur, Patna, and Thiruvananthapuram. Besides it has 09 sub-offices at Agartala, Dehradun, Gangtok, Kochi, Panaji, Raipur, Ranchi, Shillong, Shimla and Srinagar.
          The bank has also two training colleges for its officers, viz. Reserve Bank Staff College at Chennai and College of Agricultural Banking at Pune. There are also four Zonal Training Centres at Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and New Delhi.
          National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) is an apex development bank in India having headquarters based in Mumbai (Maharashtra) and other branches are all over the country. The Committee to Review Arrangements for Institutional Credit for Agriculture and Rural Development (CRAFICARD), set up by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) under the Chairmanship of Shri B. Sivaraman, conceived and recommended the establishment of the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD). It was established on 12 July 1982 by a special act by the parliament and its main focus was to uplift rural India by increasing the credit flow for elevation of agriculture & rural non farm sector and completed its 25 years on 12 July 2007. It has been accredited with "matters concerning policy, planning and operations in the field of credit for agriculture and other economic activities in rural areas in India". RBI sold its stake in NABARD to the Government of India, which now holds 99% stake.NABARD is active in developing financial inclusion policy and is a member
    of the Alliance for Financial Inclusion. 
          Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) is an autonomous apex statutory body which regulates and develops the insurance industry in India. It was constituted by a Parliament of India act called Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority Act, 1999 and duly passed by the Government of India.
          The agency operates its headquarters at Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh where it shifted from Delhi in 2001. The Insurance regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA), batted for a hike in the foreign direct investment (FDI) limit to 49 per cent in the sector from the present 26 per cent.
          IDBI Bank Limited is an Indian financial service company headquartered Mumbai, India. RBI categorised IDBI as an "other public sector bank". It was established in 1964 by an Act of Parliament to provide credit and other facilities for the development of the fledgling Indian industry. It is currently 10th largest development bank in the world in terms of reach with 1715 ATMs, 1111 branches including one overseas branch at DIFC, Dubai and 766 centers including two overseas centres at Singapore & Beijing. Some of the institutions built by IDBI are the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), National Stock Exchange of India (NSE), the National Securities Depository Limited (NSDL), the Stock Holding Corporation of India Limited (SHCIL), the Credit Analysis & Research Ltd, the Exim Bank (India), the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), the Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India, and IDBI Bank, which is owned by the Indian Government.
          Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS) located in Mumbai, is an autonomous agency in India, which started its operation in 1975 as Personnel Selection Services (PSS). In 1984, IBPS became an independent entity at the behest of Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and Public Sector Banks. IBPS is envisioned as self-governed academic and research oriented Institute, with a mission of enhancing human-resource development through personnel assessment. In 2011, IBPS announced a common written examination (CWE) for the selection Officers and Clerks in Indian banks. IBPS CWE is now mandatory for anyone who seeks an employment in public sector and Regional Rural banks.
          Indian Banks' Association (IBA), formed on 26 September, 1946 as a representative body of management of banking in India operating in India an association of Indian banks and financial institutions based in Mumbai. With an initial membership representing 22 banks in India in 1946, IBA currently represents 173 banking companies operating in India. IBA was formed for development, coordination and strengthening of Indian banking, and assist the member banks in various ways including implementation of new systems and adoption of standards among the members.
          AFC India Limited was incorporated on April 10, 1968 as a Public Limited Company with an Authorised Capital of Rs. 100 crore and Paid-up Capital of Rs. 5 crore by the then private sector commercial banks to “finance agriculture by all possible means”.(Currently the Paid-up Capital is Rs. 15 crore). Subsequent to the nationalisation of fourteen major Indian Scheduled Commercial Banks on July 19, 1969, AFC repositioned itself as a Technical Support Institution for facilitating accelerated growth of Indian agriculture. AFC has now blossomed into a diversified reputed consultancy organisation.
          Headquarter of AFC is situated at Mumbai. The Company has three Regional Offices at Kolkata, New Delhi and Bangalore besides three Branch Offices atLucknow, Hyderabad and Pune and Field Offices at Kalahandi, Bargarh (Orissa) and Godda (Jharkhand). 
          The Rural Planning and Credit Department (RPCD) formulates policies relating to rural credit and monitors timely and adequate flow of credit to the rural population for agricultural activities and rural employment programmes
          The Securities and Exchange Board of India (frequently abbreviated SEBI) is the regulator for the securities market in India. It was established in the year 1988 and given statutory powers on 12 April 1992 through the SEBI Act, 1992.
          It was officially established by The Government of India in the year 1988 and given statutory powers in 1992 with SEBI Act 1992 being passed by the Indian Parliament. SEBI has its Headquarters are at the business district of Bandra Kurla Complex in Mumbai, and has Northern, Eastern, Southern and Western Regional Offices in New Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and Ahmedabad respectively.
          The National Housing Bank (NHB) is a state owned bank and regulation authority in India, created on July 8, 1988 under section 6 of the National Housing Bank Act (1987). The headquarters is in New Delhi and i's total staff June 30, 2008 was 80.
    The institution, owned by the Reserve Bank of India, was established to promote private real estate acquisition. The NHB is regulating and re-financing social housing programs and other activities like research and IT-initiatives, too. 
    VISION Promoting inclusive expansion with stability in housing finance market.
          Small Industries Development Bank of India is an independent financial institution aimed to aid the growth and development of micro, small and mediumscale enterprises (MSME) in India. Set up on April 2, 1990 through an act of parliament, it was incorporated initially as a wholly owned subsidiary of Industrial Development Bank of India.
          It is the Principal Financial Institution for the Promotion, Financing and Development of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector and for Co-ordination of the functions of the institutions engaged in similar activities.
    Its headquarters is in Lucknow (U.P)
          The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) is the national Standards Body of India working under the aegis of Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Government of India. It is established by the Bureau of Indian Standards Act, 1986 which came into effect on 23 December 1986. The Minister in charge of the Ministry or Department having administrative control of the BIS is ex-officio President (Emaad Amin) of the BIS.
          Its headquarters are in New Delhi, with regional offices in Kolkata, Chennai, Mumbai, Chandigarh and Delhi, and 20 branch offices. It also works as WTO-TBT enquiry point for India.
          ICRA Limited is an Indian independent and professional investment information and credit rating agency. It was established in 1991, and was originally named Investment Information and Credit Rating Agency of India Limited (IICRA India). It is second largest Indian rating comapany in term of customer base. It was a joint-venture between Moody's and various Indian commercial banks and financial services companies.
    Headquarters is in Gurgaon (Haryana),India 
          CARE Ratings commenced operations in April 1993 and over nearly two decades, it has established itself as the second-largest credit rating agency in India.
    CARE’s registered office and head office, is located in Mumbai 
          CRISIL is a global analytical company providing ratings, research, and risk and policy advisory services. CRISIL’s majority shareholder is Standard & Poor's, a division of The McGraw-Hill Companies and provider of financial market intelligence.
          In India, CRISIL Research is an independent and integrated research house and provides growth forecasts, profitability analysis, emerging trends, expected investments, industry structure and regulatory frameworks.
    Headquarters is in Mumbai.
          SME Rating Agency of India Limited (SMERA) is a third party rating agency exclusively set up for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) in India for ratings on creditworthiness. It provides ratings which enable MSME units to raise bank loans at competitive rates of interest Headquarters is in Mumbai.
          Brickwork Ratings India Pvt. Ltd. operates as a credit rating agency. It offers bank loan ratings for external commercial borrowings, term loans, working capital loans, buyers credit, cash credit/packing credit, overdraft, bank guarantees, bill purchase/discounted, and letters of credit.
    Headquarters is in Bengaluru.
          India Ratings & Research (Ind-Ra) is India's Most Respected rating agency committed to providing the India's credit markets with accurate, timely and prospective credit opinions.
          India Ratings & Research (Ind-Ra) provides credit ratings and research services for India based credits. Ind-Ra is part of the Fitch Group, which in turn is a jointly-owned subsidiary of Fimalac, S.A. and Hearst Corporation Corporate Headquarters is in Mumbai.
          Onicra Credit Rating Agency is one of the leading Credit and Performance Rating agencies in India. It provides ratings, risk assessment and analytical solutions to Individuals, MSMEs and Corporates.
    Corporate Office is in Gurgaon,Haryana.
          Standard & Poor's (S&P) is an American financial services company. It is adivision of McGraw Hill Financial that publishes financial research and analysis on stocks and bonds. S&P is known for its stock market indices such as the U.S.- based S&P 500, the Canadian S&P/TSX, the Australian S&P/ASX 200, and India's S&P CNX Nifty. S&P is considered one of the Big Three credit-rating agencies, which also include Moody's Investor Service and Fitch Ratings. Its head office is located New York City, United States.
          Moody's Investors Service, often referred to as Moody's, is the bond credit rating business of Moody's Corporation, representing the company's traditional line of business and its historical name. Moody's Investors Service provides international financial research on bonds issued by commercial and government entities and, with Standard & Poor's and Fitch Group, is considered one of the Big Three credit rating agencies.
    Headquarters is in New York City, United States.
          Credit Information Bureau (India) Limited (CIBIL) is India’s first Credit Information Company (CIC) founded in August 2000. CIBIL collects and maintains records of an individual’s payments pertaining to loans and credit cards. These records are submitted to CIBIL by member banks and credit institutions, on a monthly basis. This information is then used to create Credit Information Reports (CIR) and credit scores which are provided to credit institutions in order to help evaluate and approve loan applications.
    Headquartered at Mumbai.
          Asset Reconstruction Company (India) Limited (Arcil) is India's first and largest asset reconstruction company, to commence business of resolution of Non-Performing Assets (NPAs) upon acquisition from Indian banks and financial institutions. It is sponsored by prominent banks and financial institutions namely State Bank of India (SBI), IDBI Bank Limited (IDBI), ICICI Bank Limited (ICICI) and Punjab National Bank (PNB). Arcil has its registered office at Mumbai, Maharashtra.
          Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation (DICGC) is a subsidiary of Reserve Bank of India. It was established on 1961 under Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation Act, 1961 for the purpose of providing insurance of deposits and guaranteeing of credit facilities. DICGC insures all bank deposits, such as saving, fixed, current, recurring deposits for up to the limit of Rs. 100,000.
          Bombay Stock Exchange, commonly referred to as the BSE, (Bombay Share Bazaar) is a stock exchange located on Dalal Street, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
          It is the 11th largest stock exchange in the world by market capitalisation as of 31 December 2012. Established in 1875, BSE Ltd. (formerly known as Bombay Stock Exchange Ltd.), is Asia’s first Stock Exchange and one of India’s leading exchange groups. Over the past 137 years, BSE has facilitated the growth of the Indian corporate sector by providing it an efficient capital-raising platform.
          The National Stock Exchange (NSE) is stock exchange located in Mumbai, India. National Stock Exchange (NSE) was established in the mid 1990s as a demutualised electronic exchange. NSE provides a modern, fully automated screenbased trading system, with over two lakh trading terminals, through which investors in every nook and corner of India can trade. NSE has played a critical role in reforming the Indian securities market and in bringing unparalleled transparency, efficiency and market integrity.
          Stock Holding Corporation of India Ltd (SHCIL), India’s largest custodian and depository participant based in Mumbai, Maharashtra. It was established in 1986 under the Government of India as public limited company Stock Holding Corporation of India (SHCIL), the country's first and one of the largest security custodians to financial institutions, will be merged with stateowned lender IDBI Bank, subject to approvals from regulators and other SHCIL stakeholders.
          The Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India (EDI), an autonomous and not-for-profit institute, set up in 1983, is sponsored by the IDBI Bank Ltd., IFCI Ltd., ICICI Bank Ltd. and State Bank of India (SBI). The government of Gujarat pledged twenty-three acres of land on which stands the EDI campus.
    Located in Gujrat.
          OTC Exchange Of India (OTCEI) also known as Over-the-Counter Exchange of India based in Mumbai, Maharashtra.It is the first exchange for small companies.[3] It is the first screen based nationwide stock exchange in India.It was set up to access high-technology enterprising promoters in raising finance for new product development in a cost effective manner and to provide transparent and efficient trading system to the investors 
          Inter-connected Stock Exchange Ltd. (ISE) started its operation in 1998 in Vashi, Mumbai. It is a national-level stock exchange, providing trading, clearing, settlement, risk management and surveillance support to its trading members. It has 841 trading members, who are located in 18 cities. 
          Multi Commodity Exchange of India Ltd (MCX) is an independent commodity exchange based in India. It was established in 2003 and is based in Mumbai. The turnover of the exchange for the fiscal year 2009 was US$ 1.24 trillion, and in terms of contracts traded, it was in 2009 the world's sixth largest commodity exchange. MCX offers futures trading in bullion, ferrous and non-ferrous metals, energy, and a number of agricultural commodities (mentha oil, cardamom,potatoes, palm oil and others).
          Intrex Trade Exchange Ltd is India's first ever Cash Trade Exchange, based in Mumbai, Maharashtra. formerly known as Intrex India Ltd, is a public limited company incorporated in Year 2000 by Essel Group.The Trade exchange, comprising both a cash and a cashless exchange, offers Indian businesses an integrated platform for their finance, marketing and sourcing requirements. 
          National Securities Depository Limited (NSDL), is the first central securities depository in India based in Mumbai.It is promoted by institutions of national stature responsible for the economic development of India and has established a national infrastructure of international standards that handles most of the securities held and settled in dematerialised form in the Indian capital market
          Institute for Development & Research in Banking Technology or IDRBT is a banking research institute, established in 1996 by Reserve Bank of India (RBI), and is located at Hyderabad, India.RBI established IDBRT with the aim of providing the operational service support in Information Technology to Banks and Financial Institutions. The first phase of reforms in the Indian Financial Sector precipitated the need for an Apex Level Institute, for implementing Banking Technology and Technology Absorption in the Indian Banking and Financial Sector.
          IDBRT is also an academic institution that offers a range of Academic and Research Programs, designed specifically to meet both the existing and emerging requirements of the Banking and Financial Sector in India.
          The Banking Codes and Standards Board of India is an independent banking industry watchdog that protects consumers of banking services in India. The board oversee compliance with the "Code of Bank's Commitment to Customers". It is not a compensation mechanism and looks into an individual complaint only to the extent it points to any systemic compliance failure. It is an independent and autonomous body, registered as a separate society under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 on February 18, 2006.
    Headquarters is in Mumbai.
          An Asset Management Company (AMC) is an asset management / investment management company/firm that invests the pooled funds of retail investors in securities in line with the stated investment objectives. For a fee, the company/ firm provides more diversification, liquidity, and professional management consulting service than is normally available to individual investors. The diversification of portfolio is done by investing in such securities which are inverselycorrelated to each other. Money is collected from investors by way of floating 
    various mutual fund schemes.
    Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM)
          The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) is one of the apex trade associations of India. The organisation represents the interests of trade and commerce in India, and acts as an interface between industry, government and other relevant stakeholders on policy issues and initiatives. The goal of this organization is to promote both domestic and international trade, and reduce trade barriers while fostering conducive environment for the growth of trade and industry of India.
    Headquarters is in New Delhi.
          The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) is an association of business organizations in India. Established in 1927, on the advice of Mahatma Gandhi by GD Birla and Purushottam Das Thakurdas, it is the largest, oldest and the apex business organisation in India. It is a non-government, notfor- profit organisation. FICCI draws its membership from the corporate sector, both private and public, including SMEs and MNCs.
    It is headquartered in the national capital New Delhi and has presence in 11 states in India and 8 countries across the world 
          The Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India Limited (ECGC) is a company wholly owned by the Government of India based in Mumbai, Maharashtra. It provides export credit insurance support to Indian exporters and is controlled by the Ministry of Commerce. Government of India had initially set up Export Risks Insurance Corporation (ERIC) in July 1957. It was transformed into Export Credit and Guarantee Corporation Limited (ECGC) in 1964 and to Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India in 1983 ECGC is the fifth largest credit insurer of the world in terms of coverage of national exports
    Headquartered at Mumbai.
          The Central Registry of Securitisation Asset Reconstruction and Security Interest of India (CERSAI) is a company licensed under section 25 of the Companies Act, 1956 and registered by the Registrar of Companies, New Delhi. CERSAI was promoted by central government to prevent frauds involving multiple lending by different banks on the same immovable property. It became operational on March
          The Company is a Government Company with a shareholding of 51% by the Central Government and select Public Sector Banks and the National Housing Bank are also shareholders of the Company.
    Objective: The object of the company is to maintain and operate a Registration System for the purpose of registration of transactions of securitisation, asset reconstruction of financial assets and creation of security interest over property, as contemplated under Chapter IV of the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act, 2002. (SARFAESI Act).
          The Registration would be applicable to transactions of security interest over property created to secure loans and advances from the banks and financial institutions as defined under the SARFAESI Act. 

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