Current Affairs Current Affairs - 22 January 2017 - Vikalp Education

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Current Affairs - 22 January 2017

General Affairs 

Bihar forms world’s largest human chain against alcoholism and liquor
  • Bihar today claimed to have formed the world’s largest human chain with Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, political leaders, cutting across party lines, and citizens held each other’s hand to reaffirm commitment towards liquor ban. The 45-minute-long human chain started at 12:15 PM at the historic Gandhi Maidan when Chief Minister Nitish Kumar floated colourful balloons, and ended at 1 PM.
    The chief minister joined hands with RJD supremo Lalu Prasad on the one side and state Legislative Assembly Speaker Vijay Kumar Chaudhary on the other to begin the chain of people to express unity in support of prohibition.
    Legislative Council Chairman Awdesh Narayan Singh, Deputy Chief Minister Tejaswi Yadav, state Congress President and minister Ashok Choudhary, NCP General Secretary and MP Tariq Anwar and a host of ministers and legislators held each other’s hand at the begining of the chain which branched to different directions to stretch across Bihar.
    Opposition BJP which lent support to the human chain joined the queue in Siwan, where their two-day state executive committee meeting is beginning today.
    Top BJP leaders Sushil Kumar Modi, Union minister of state Ramkripal Yadav, Leader of Opposition in Bihar Assembly Prem Kumar, party national spokesman Shahnawaz Hussain and party MP from Maharajganj Janardan Singh Sigriwal joined each other’s hand in Siwan as part of human chain.
    The CM, Lalu Prasad and other leaders stood in lines to form a map of Bihar in Gandhi Maidan. A picture of liquor bottle with a cross sign was drawn in the middle of this map to give the message against alcohol.
    Bihar was written in dark black colour in the middle of the map so that a clear picture of the event is captured through ISRO sattelite, drones and helicopters.
    To display communal harmony, four children dressed in traditional attires of hindus, muslims, sikhs and christians stood by side of the CM and Lalu Prasad.
    The human chain is estimated to cover a distance of 11,292 km involving two crore citizens.
    The Bihar human chain is tipped to be the world’s largest so far. The previous record is of 1050 km long human chain which was formed in Bangladesh in 2004.
    Though reaction of the CM on today’s mammoth event is yet to come, RJD supremo Lalu Prasad told reporters all parties and citizens in general were together to fight evil of liquor.
    Congress state President and minister Ashok Choudhary, whose Education department is the organiser of the human chain programme told reporters that it was the biggest social congregation of people in the country after Independence.
    Kumar has already said today’s human chain programme was launched as a special drive in support of prohibition and make Bihar intoxicant-free in next two months.
    Bihar is witnessing complete ban on alcohol, domestic as well Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) since April 2016. The CM has taken prohibition exercise in a mission mode.
    Chief Secretary Anjani Kumar Singh, state police chief P K Thakur and a host of civil and police officials held each other’s hand as part of human chain in Gandhi maidan.
    Excitement of the event was visible among school children who stood in the human chain in Patna and elsewhere.
    Tabishi Sinha, a student of DAV BSEB school of Patna, hailed the event to express strong resolve against liquor.
    “It’s historic that all our schoolmates and other students have joined hands with each other to send a loud and clear message of ‘no’ to alcohol,” said Tabishi, whose school stood at the stretch from CM’s house to J D Womens’ college.
    A student of Notre Dame Ayesha Sayeed, whose school stood in line near Kurji More here, said it’s a historic moment as we are becoming part of a great social revolution.
    Women formed bulk of human chain in Patna and elsewhere.
    Burqa-clad muslim women stood in queue in Gandhi maidan display participation of people from all faiths.
    BJP which had decided to participate in the human chain programme said they were against liquor but would continue to raise voice against some stringent clauses in new Excise Law, 2016 like arrest of all adults in event of recovery of liquor bottle in a house, community fine and seizure of premises if even an empty liquor bottle is found.
    Media reports suggest that BJP, which has been vocal against the liquor law, came in support of it after Prime Minister Narendra Modi patted Kumar on prohibition at the 350th Prakash Parva function on January 5.
    Talking to reporters while standing in human chain in Siwan, senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi said “we always stood in support of liquor ban. It’s due to pressure created by BJP that the state government clamped a total ban on alcohol, domestic as well Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL).”
    Last week, the Bihar government announced to shut all manufacturing units of liquor in the state from next financial year only due to pressure of BJP, Sushil said.
    Leader of Opposition Prem Kumar said “we are not standing for any individual (Nitish Kumar) but against alcohol.”
    Union state minister Ramkripal Yadav and party spokesman Shahnawaz Hussain echoed similar views.
    The state government made elaborate arrangements to capture the historical moments of human chain. ISRO has been involved to use Indian and foreign satellites to take photos of human chain. 40 drones, one chopper and four trainer aircraft have been engaged to film the event.
    Nitish Kumar, in a message issued after the human chain, expressed thanks to the citizens of Bihar.
    “Through unprecedented support, the citizens of Bihar have sent a strong message against liquor and intoxicants not only in the country but across the world,” he said.
    “Today, people displayed that foundation of social change has been laid in Bihar,” he added.
    The CM urged the citizens to continue displaying their unity and strong determination against liquor in future too.
    Meanwhile, reports of formation of human chain poured in from Begusarai, Darbhanga, Samastipur, Muzaffarpur, Sitamarhi and other districts.
    District Magistrates and Superintendent of Police joined citizens in their areas as part of the 45 minute event.
    The 11,292-km human chain covered National Highways, State Highways and branch roads within districts of Bihar. While NHs/SHs form 3007 km of human chain sub-routes is extended in 8285 km.
    With 2,000 participants standing in one km of human chain, an estimated two crore citizens are said to have joined the event.

    Now that Chandu is back, grandmother’s ashes can be immersed, says family of soldier returned by Pak
    • As Indian soldier Chandu Chavan was on Saturday released by Pakistan following his capture across the border last September, the ashes of his grandmother can finally be immersed in river, his family said. Chandu’s grandmother had died of shock after he was captured by the Pakistani forces. Hearing the news of his release, his brother Bhushan Chavan, who too serves the Armed Forces, said the family was grateful to the government.

      “My grandmother died of heart attack after hearing the news of Chandu’s capture by Pakistan. We had decided that until he returned her ashes will not be immersed in river. That day has now come,” said Bhushan, speaking to PTI from the family’s native place, village Bor Vihir in Dhule district of North Maharashtra. Preparations had started in the village to give Chandu a grand welcome and crackers were being burst, he said.
      “I received a call from Subhash Bhamre (Minister of State for Defence and local MP) and he informed us about Chandu’s release,” Bhushan said, adding that he was grateful to the Defence Minister and all the officials of DGMO for their tireless efforts to bring Chandu back.
      Bhushan had also written to the human rights organisations in Pakistan, seeking help to secure his brother’s release, he said. “I even tweeted to Pakistan’s ambassador at United Nations and sought her help,” he said.

    BMC polls: Pre-poll alliance rejected as Sena offers 60 seats while BJP demands 114 seats
    • Shiv Sena and BJP on Saturday outrightly rejected the pre-poll alliance proposal for the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) elections in Mumbai. Sena offered Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) 60 seats but the BJP had demanded 114 seats. Seeing there was no possible meeting grounds, both the sides called off the discussions.

      As the meeting ended, Shiv Sena leader Anil Desai said, “ Today, we exchanged our proposals. We have offered BJP 60 seats. They have demanded 114 seats. It was not acceptable to us.” Mumbai BJP chief Ashish Shelar reiterated, “The BJP has submitted the proposal of 114 seats to the Sena. The Sena has given us 60 seats.”
      We will report the developments to our respective leaders and they will take the final decision on pre-poll alliances. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Sena president Uddhav Thackeray will take further decisions.
      Interestingly, during the 2012 BMC elections, Shiv Sena had contested on 164 seats and BJP on 63 seats.

    Punjab: Confident of doing well, visualise that we’ll bring development, says Arun Jaitley
    • Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Saturday addressed the media in Amritsar where he assured the people of brining in a continued era of development if voted to power in Punjab Assembly elections. “We’re confident of doing extremely well in this election; visualise that we’ll bring in a continued era of development in the state.”
      Jaitley became the first BJP leader from the Centre to launch the party’s election campaign in Punjab on Friday. During his public meeting, the BJP leader attacked Punjab Congress chief Amarinder Singh over his family’s Swiss bank accounts and said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched a ‘jihad’ against corruption. Jaitley also spoke about the government’s demonetisation move introduced on November 8 last year as well as the ‘surgical strikes’ conducted across the Line of Control in PoK.
      As reported by the Indian Express, in a veiled attack on Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, he said both in Punjab and Himachal ‘Rajas’ were heading the Congress and while the Captain’s foreign bank accounts had been traced, Singh had been caught with “do number da paisa (unaccounted money)”. He also sought to justify the Centre’s demonetisation decision when he said no one’s money was snatched. “If you have money, put that in banks. If any rich man earns crores, why evade tax. When cash comes in banks, its ownership is known, it would be taxed and would be used for poor people, for development,” he had said.

    Yogenda Yadav claims AAP govt spent Rs 30 lakh on ads; just Rs 3.15 lakh in loan to students
    • The AAP government spent Rs 30 lakhs on advertisements for student loans’ scheme, but only three students got a mere Rs 3.15 lakhs till December last, Swaraj India on Saturday claimed, as it sought to rupture the “tall claims” made by the Arvind Kejriwal dispensation in the field of education. The Higher Education and Skill Guarantee Scheme is Delhi government’s flagship programme.

      Addressing a press conference, Yogendra Yadav said doubling of education budget is also a “myth” as figures tell a different tale and stated the number of schools and colleges in the national capital show a decline, contrary to the claims made by the Delhi government.
      “Till December 30, 2016 (in the past year-and-a-half), loans were given to 97 students of the 405 applicants through this scheme.
      “Of these, the Delhi Government gave only 3 loans, limiting their exposure to a mere Rs 3.15 lakhs. All the remaining loans were financed through a similar central government scheme.
      “In its very first year (2015-16), the government made an advertising expenditure of over Rs 30 lakhs,” Yadav said.
      Yadav claimed that information was sought through RTI and official documents of Delhi government.
      The Aam Aadmi Party refused to react on Yadav’s alligations.
      AAP’s Delhi unit convener Dilip Pandey said, “We don’t want to comment on the claims those who have no role to play in growth of Delhi politics.”
      Pandey later said, said, “At least three lives could be shaped by it.”
      Yadav also claimed AAP had promised construction of 500 new schools in a year. However, in 2014-15, there were 1,007 Delhi government schools in the National Capital Territory.
      “By the end of 2015-16, there were 1,011. All of 4 new schools were constructed in the entire year. This is much lower than what the previous government managed in each of the last 4 years. The total number of schools in Delhi NCT also went down in the year 2015-16, 5,796 as opposed to 5,798 till the year before,” Yadav said.
      He pointed out that Kejriwal had promised 20 new colleges but at the end of 2015-16, Delhi has one college less than it had till the year before for general education (84, compared to 85 in 2014-15).
      He also called the AAP government’s claim of doubling of education budget, a mere “myth”.
      “A few months after assuming office in February 2015, the AAP government presented its first budget and went to town about more than doubling the education budget (raising it by 106 per cent). Figures that establish the claim as deceptive and an embarrassing exaggeration.
      “It was only the Budget’s ‘Planned’ component which was hiked to Rs 4,570 crore from the previous year’s Rs 2,219 crore by 106 per cent, and not the entire Budget.
      “Also, of the gross allocated amount only Rs 2,932 crore was spent. So, the actual planned expenditure on education in Delhi NCT went up by 37 per cent,” Yadav said.

    Business Affairs 

      Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, 2016: Co-operative banks cannot take deposits under PMGKY
      • The government has barred co-operative banks from accepting deposits under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, 2016. This comes in the backdrop of the Income Tax department finding that a number of such banks were suspected of converting black money into white, during the demonetisation drive from November 8 to December 30.
        “Application for the deposit in the form of Bonds Ledger Account shall be received by any banking company, other than Co-operative Banks, to which the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 (10 of 1949) applies,” the finance ministry said in a statement on Friday, while amending the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Deposit Scheme (PMGKDS), 2016 which was notified by the RBI on December 16.

        Under the scheme, taxpayers have to deposit 25 per cent of the declared amount as interest-free deposits for four years. This is apart from the 50 per cent tax that have to paid by declarants under the scheme. The RBI had earlier said this deposit could be made with any banks. But now, cooperative banks have been barred from accepting such deposits. The scheme is open till March 31.
        The finance ministry did not give details on why it amended the rules to prevent cooperative banks from accepting deposits under the scheme. Under the scheme, holders of unaccounted cash willing to avail the offer will have to first pay the tax amount and then fill up a challan form provided by the bank for availing the four-year deposit scheme.
        The authorised banks have to electronically furnish the details of deposit to the revenue department on the next working day to enable information verification of the deposit before accepting the declaration under the PMGKY.
        During the 50-day demonetisation period, the income tax department had found various irregularities in co-operative banks’ operations such as backdating of cash deposits, structuring deposits in multiple accounts to escape reporting norms, their management using the bank to launder personal unaccounted cash.
        An estimated Rs 15.44 lakh crore worth of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes were in circulation as on November 8, the day government announced withdrawal of these high denomination notes. While the RBI has not announced the exact amount of withdrawn notes that were deposited, there are reports that close to Rs 15 lakh crore has already come back. The tax department has asked banks to report deposits in any account aggregating Rs 10 lakh in a year, as well as cash payments of Rs 1 lakh or more on credit card bills.
        Tax department steps up scrutiny
        New Delhi: Similar to the higher number of searches and surveys conducted by the tax department during the Income Declaration Scheme (IDS) last year, the tax department has stepped up its investigations for deposits of unaccounted cash post demonetisation, prompting many people to come clean under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY).
        Based on information about deposits worth Rs 140 crore, the Pune Investigation Directorate over the last two days has conducted searches and surveys on premises of more than 37 jewellers in 16 cities across Maharashtra and has detected serious irregularities, an internal report of the department stated. Following the investigations by the tax department, these persons have opted for disclosures under the PMGKY scheme, it said.
        The Hyderabad Investigation Directorate has also conducted several searches and surveys, among which a jeweller was found to have deposited cash over Rs 100 crore in the scrapped currency of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes. The jeweller had claimed the source of cash as advances from more than 5,200 customers on November 8, the day when the government had announced its decision to scrap old currency notes. After investigation by the tax department, the claim was found to be incorrect and the case was subsequently referred to the Enforcement Directorate.
        Similar cases have been reported in Hyderabad, with a doctor admitting to depositing cash out of unexplained sources. The tax department subsequently seized Rs 7.5 crore out of total Rs 11.5 crore deposited by the doctor. In other cases, another doctor was found to have routed his unaccounted cash through account of a taxi driver, while a film producer admitted to having deposited unaccounted cash worth Rs 40 crore, out of which Rs 37 crore was seized by the tax department.

        No fake currency was seized from November 8 to December 30, Finance Ministry tells PAC
        • One of the primary motives cited for demonetisation was to tackle problems of counterfeit notes and terrorist financing. In its submission to the Public Accounts Committee, the Finance Ministry has said no counterfeit notes were seized by agencies from Nov 8 to Dec 30. While an amount of Rs 474.37 crore in new and old currency was seized by Income Tax from Indian nationals during the demonetisation drive from November 9 to January 4, the Ministry has said it has no information whether the persons from whom the cash was seized were terrorist groups or smugglers.

          However, the ministry, has reported a 100 per cent increase in seizure of valuables and 51 per cent increase in undisclosed income admitted during the period April-December 2016, as compared to the corresponding period last year.
          During the period, there was an increase of 136 per cent in the number of groups searched than the last year.
          The ministry also declared buoyancy in tax collections since the demonetisation drive was announced on November 8. There is 12.01 percent rise in the net collection of direct tax, net growth of 24.6 per cent in personal income tax collections and 14.4 per cent rise in advance collection than what was recorded during corresponding period last year. “CIT (corporate income tax) advance tax is growing at 10.6 per cent while PIT (personal income tax) advance tax has registered a growth of 38.2 per cent,” the ministry told the PAC in response to its queries on demonetisation.
          The four secretaries from the ministry — Revenue, Expenditure, Department of Economic Affairs and Department of Financial Services — are expected to appear before the PAC on February 10.
          Pointing out that there have been widespread reports of the usage of Fake Indian Currency Notes financing of terrorism and drug financing, both the government and the RBI have claimed that demonetisation could contain it. In a note given to the Parliament’s Department Related Committee of Finance, RBI has said: “It occurred to Government of India and the Reserve Bank that the introduction of new series of notes could provide a very rare and profound opportunity to tackle all the three problems of counterfeiting, terrorist financing and black money by demonetising the banknotes in high denominations of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 or by withdrawing legal tender status of such banknotes.”
          To a specific question by the PAC on how many counterfeit notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 denomination have been seized from terrorist groups, smugglers of arms, drugs and spies until December 30, the ministry said. “No counterfeit currency have been seized by agencies under CBEC (Central Board of Excise and Customs) since 8th November 2016 till 30th December 2016.”
          Of the total cash seizure between November 8 to January 4 2017, Rs 112.29 crore was in new currency. The ministry’s reply to the PAC also said during demonetisation period, the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) seized Rs 3 crore in old currencies from 67 places across India and foreign currency worth Rs 1.7 crore. A search on 36 hawala operators across the country could bring out old currency worth Rs 1 crore, new currency worth Rs 20 lakh and foreign currency in Rs. 50 lakh.
          During December 2016, there is an increase of 14.2 per cent in the net indirect tax collection which included a 31.6 per cent growth in central excise and 12.4 per cent rise in service tax over the corresponding month last year.
          The Finance Ministry reiterated that the demonetisation exercise has had a “positive impact” which includes idle cash coming to the formal system, possibility of widening and deepening the tax base, increased availability of funds with banks, rise in the usage of non-cash transactions, increased transparency, easier tracking of cash that returned to the bank and more cash-less transactions.

        Bank stocks, US policy worries pull Sensex down 274 points
        • Led by bank stocks, stock markets on Friday fell one per cent to post their first weekly fall in four as Axis Bank slumped after it posted disappointing results, dragging down other lenders. Investors turned nervous ahead of the swearing-in of Donald Trump as
          US President and worries over the change in policies, especially visa regulations.
          After a poor start, the Sensex stayed in the negative space throughout and closed down 274.10 points at 27,034.50 — a level last seen on January 10. Intra-day, it hovered between 27,264.41 and 27,009.81. The index gained 72.94 points in the last two sessions. The Nifty too ended lower by 85.75 points, or 1.02 per cent, at 8,349.35 after shuttling between 8,423.65 and 8,340.95.
          On a weekly basis, both key indices recorded fall of 203.56 points, or 0.74 per cent, and 51 points, or 0.60 per cent, respectively.
          The fall in bank stocks was triggered by private lender Axis Bank, which plunged 6.86 per cent after it reported a sharp 73 per cent decline in net profit at Rs 580 crore for the December quarter yesterday. ICICI Bank too faced selling pressure and lost 2.34 per cent to end at Rs 263.40 while state-run SBI fell 2.83 per cent.
          “Till yesterday (Thursday), third quarter results were coming marginally above expectations and the market was holding a positive view. However, a poor set of numbers led by financials has annoyed the investors which has turned them cautious,” said Vinod Nair, head of Research, Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services. The caution overshadowed better-than-expected China’s fourth quarter GDP growth and Fed chair Janet Yellen taking a less hawkish stance on rate hike. “Additionally, commodity stocks are losing their attractiveness due to consolidation ahead of the Trump swearing-in ceremony today. IT and pharma stocks will be keenly watched as the segment may be effected from the upcoming US policies,” Nair said.
          Analysts said extreme nervousness ahead of Trump’s inaugural speech and uncertainty over the economic impact of his fiscal policies further dampened the market sentiment. Adani Ports, Tata Steel, NTPC, L&T, ONGC, Hero MotoCorp and M&M, among others, too kept the Sensex on the edge. Sector-wise, metal suffered the most by losing 2.37 per cent, followed by infra (2.04 per cent), PSU (1.97 per cent) and bank (1.77 per cent).
          Jayant Manglik, president, Retail Distribution, Religare Securities, said, “Indian market ended the trading session on a jittery note amid high volatility as investors remained cautious ahead of the speech of the US President. Barring FMCG, all major indices saw selling pressure as the broader market sentiment remained subdued after Federal Reserve Chairman’s hawkish policy stance and unchanged policy rates by ECB, which were on the expected lines.”
          Market participants are expecting robust budget for fiscal 2018 after the government’s strong move to ban the currency notes. “With more quarterly results in coming days, stock specific reaction will be seen but global factors will continue to weigh on the markets. The global market participants will keenly track the policy initiatives of the newly elected US President,” he said.
          Meanwhile, the rupee failed to hold its early gains and ended lower by 5 paise to close at an over one-week low of 68.18 as the dollar gathered strength ahead of the US Presidential inauguration. A massive sell-off in domestic equities spooked by a series of weak corporate earnings predominantly weighed on trade and kept pressure on the Indian currency.
          Axis bank stocks plunge
          The fall in bank stocks was triggered by private lender. Axis Bank, which plunged 6.86 per cent after it reported a sharp 73 per cent decline in net profit at Rs 580 crore for the December quarter yesterday. ICICI Bank too faced selling pressure and lost 2.34 per cent to end at Rs 263.40 while state-run SBI fell 2.83 per cent. Analysts said extreme nervousness ahead of Trump’s inaugural speech and uncertainty over the economic impact of his fiscal policies further dampened the market sentiment.

          System getting ready for digital economy, RBI Governor tells PAC
          • India is in the process of getting infrastructure ready for a digital transaction push, with lack of spectrum availability being its key constraint, sources quoted an RBI team telling the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Friday. RBI officials told the panel that the system was getting ready for digital economy as PAC members questioned the digitisation process and push for cash-less economy.
            “They admitted that there is much to improve and the main issue cited was the lack of infrastructure, especially availability of the spectrum. They said there were also issues of non-availability of swipe machines,” said a source. The team assured the panel that a mechanism was being worked out to bring down transaction costs for online payments and that cash flow in urban as well as rural areas had improved significantly.
            RBI Governor Urjit Patel, who appeared before the parliamentary panel along with his deputies R Gandhi and S S Mundra, could not answer all the questions raised. The RBI officials chose not to reply to significant questions like who decided to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, the time required to bring back normalcy and how much old currency had returned to banks. The standard response of the officials in writing was “the government may frame a suitable reply”.

            The response was the same to questions about objectives laid down for demonetisation, quantum of black money recovered and whether the government realises virtual paralysis of economy as a result of the move. “It is a matter of fact that it was a unanimous decision,” the team responded to a question on whether the demonetisation proposal was a unanimous decision of the RBI Board. The RBI submitted over 200-page document addressing questions related to the monetary policy and demonetisation.
            PAC chairman K V Thomas said the panel has given the RBI 15 days to send its detailed replies. He added that it will summon the governor again if necessary. In his opening remarks, Thomas pointed out that it could imply that demonetisation was the RBI’s brainchild since its autonomy is “zealously” protected by the RBI Act. He added that “no one, including the highest authority of Government of India, can claim any credit or otherwise for the decision or the consequences of such decisions”. Thomas said that the RBI should have analysed the implications of the decision. He asked whether the RBI has had any discussions to find out whether the decision encroaches upon the right to property of individual citizens. Thomas referred to reported deaths during the demonetisation process, too.
            Sources said that BJP members objected to Thomas’s focus on demonetisation as the team was called for monetary policy review. There were some heated exchanges. BJP’s Nishikant Dubey disagreed with Thomas’s focus on demonetisation in his remarks . “The conduct of monetary policy functions by the RBI under the RBI Act is different from the action taken by the government for withdrawal of legal tender character of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 bank notes under a different provision of the Act,” Dubey said. He cautioned against asking questions about sensitive financial policy decisions ahead of the budget.
            Biju Janata Dal’s B Mahtab agreed that the discussion should focus on monetary policy and demonetisation could be a part of it. But Thomas quoted RBI’s note and said that demonetisation had a deep impact on the monetary policy and the panel had the right to discuss it.
            The panel highlighted hardships that non-resident Indians and people in neighbouring countries like Nepal were facing because of demonetisation.
            Patel agreed to examine the proposal when BJP MP Shivkumar Udasi suggested that the RBI could set up a committee to study behavioural changes in people relating to monetary transactions. BJP’s Anurag Thakur wanted the RBI to look into discrepancies in transactions in cooperative banks post-demonetisation.

          RBI working on plan to reduce online charges: Report
          • THE Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is working on a plan to reduce online transaction costs in order to encourage more digital banking, reported Reuters. Quoting two parliamentary panel members, the report said central bank Governor Urjit Patel said this Friday before the Public Accounts Committee (PAC).
            “We are working on a mechanism to bring down transaction costs,” one member of the public accounts committee quoted Patel as saying. “We are speaking to all stakeholders.”

            Patel had met the panel to answer questions about demonetisation and its impact.
            According to ANI, Patel is also learnt to have told PAC that cash flow will normalise with the passage of time and underlined the steps being taken for this, in both rural and urban areas.
            He also said that specific agencies like financial intelligence unit and income tax department are looking into abnormal deposits.
            The RBI Governor also informed PAC that demonetisation will have a short-term impact on GDP but will have a positive impact in mid and long term.
            In a shock move on November 8, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced demonetisation of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.
            Following the decision, the RBI had put curbs on withdrawal of cash from ATMs and banks to deal with shortage of new high-value currency notes.

          General Awareness

          National Parks List (state-wise ) for Exams

            1. NATIONAL PARKS__
              Balphakram National Park Meghalaya
              Nokrek National Park Meghalaya
              Madhya Pradesh
              Bandhavgarh National Park Madhya Pradesh
              Kanha National Park Madhya Pradesh
              Madhav National Park Madhya Pradesh
              Mandla Fossils National Park Madhya Pradesh
              Van Vihar National Park Madhya Pradesh
              Panna National Park Madhya Pradesh
              Pench National Park Madhya Pradesh
              Sanjay National Park Madhya Pradesh
              Satpura National Park Madhya Pradesh
              Bandipur National Park Karnataka
              Bannerghatta National Park Karnataka
              Kudremukh National Park Karnataka
              Nagarhole National Park Karnataka
              Betla National Park Jharkhand
              Hazaribagh National Park Jharkhand
              Bhitarkanika National Park Odisha
              Blackbuck National Park Gujarat
              Gir Forest National Park Gujarat
              Marine Gulf of Kutch park Gujarat
              Vansda National Park Gujarat
              West Bengal
              Sundarbans National Park West Bengal
              Buxa Tiger Reserve West Bengal
              Gorumara National Park West Bengal
              Jaldapara National Park West Bengal
              Neora Valley National Park West Bengal
              Singalila National Park West Bengal
              Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              Campbell Bay National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              Galathea National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              Mahatma National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              Middle Button National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              Mount Harriet National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              North Button National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              South Button National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              Rani Jhansi National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              Saddle Peak National Park Andaman and Nicobar Islands
              Chandoli National Park Maharashtra
              Negaon National Park Maharashtra
              Sanjay Gandhi National Park Maharashtra
              Tadoba National Park Maharashtra
              Gugamal National Park Maharashtra
              Jammu and Kashmir
              Dachigam National Park Jammu and Kashmir
              Hemis National Park Jammu and Kashmir
              Kishtwar National Park Jammu and Kashmir
              Salim Ali National Park Jammu and Kashmir
              Darrah National Park Rajasthan
              Desert National Park Rajasthan
              Keoladeo National Park Rajasthan
              Mount Abu Wildlife Sanctuary Rajasthan
              Ranthambore National Park Rajasthan
              Sariska Tiger Reserve Rajasthan
              Dibru-Saikhowa National Park Assam
              Kaziranga National Park Assam
              Manas National Park Assam
              Orang National Park Assam
              Nameri National Park Assam
              Nandankanan Zoological Park Odisha
              Simlipal National Park Odisha
              Uttar Pradesh
              Dudhwa National Park Uttar Pradesh
              Valmiki National Park Bihar
              Eravikulam National Park Kerala
              Mathikettan National Park Kerala
              Periyar National Park Kerala
              Silent Valley National Park Kerala
              Gangotri National Park Uttarakhand
              Govind Wildlife Sanctuary Uttarakhand
              Tamil Nadu
              Guindy National Park Tamil Nadu
              Gulf of Mannar National Park Tamil Nadu
              Indira Sanctuary Tamil Nadu
              Mudumalai National Park Tamil Nadu
              Mukurthi National Park Tamil Nadu
              Palani Hills National Park Tamil Nadu
              Harike Wetland Punjab
              Kalesar National Park Haryana
              Sultanpur National Park Haryana
              Himachal Pradesh
              Great Himalayan National Park Himachal Pradesh
              Pin Valley National Park Himachal Pradesh
              Indravati National Park Chhattisgarh
              Kanger Ghati National Park Chhattisgarh
              Jim Corbett National Park Uttarakhand
              Nanda Devi National Park Uttarakhand
              Rajaji National Park Uttarakhand
              Valley of Flowers National Park Uttarakhand
              Kasu Reddy National Park Telangana
              Vanasthali National Park Telangana
              Keibul Lamjao National Park Manipur
              Sirohi National Park Manipur
              Khangchendzonga Park Sikkim
              Arunachal Pradesh
              Mouling National Park Arunachal Pradesh
              Namdapha National Park Arunachal Pradesh
              Murlen National Park Mizoram
              Blue Mountain National Park Mizoram
              Andhra Pradesh
              Papikonda National Park Andhra Pradesh
              Sri Venkateswara Park Andhra Pradesh
              Mollem National Park Goa
              Mrugavani National Park Telangana
              Ntangki National Park Nagaland
              UNESCO World Heritage Site_
              1. Kaziranga National Park– Indian rhinoceros
              2. Great Himalayan National Park
              3. Keoladeo National Park
              4. Manas National Park
              5. Nanda Devi National Park
              6. Sundarbans National Park
              7. Nokrek National Park–biosphere*
              a. National forest policy -1952, 1988
              b. Project tiger –1973
              c. project elephant– 1992
              d. project crocodile– 1975
              e. project dolphine — 2008
              • Total number of BIOSPHERE reserves in india–18
              • Total number of ELEPHANT reserves in india –29
              • Total number of TIGER reserves in india –48
              • total number of CROCODILE reserves in india –4

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