The Ministry of Finance recently expanded the scope of Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme to Rs 3 lakh crores. It aims to provide relief to stressed companies in the country. This mainly includes business enterprises in tourism, hospitality, travel and sporting sector.
The scheme has been expanded to health care and other stressed sector companies that have loan dues up to sixty days (SMA-1 accounts). The validity of all the three ECLGS, that is, ECLGS 1.0, ECLGS 2.0 and ECLGS 3.0 have been extended till June 2021.
SMA accounts are Special Mention Accounts. These accounts show signs of incipient stress.
The scheme was launched as part of Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan. The main objective of the scheme is to mitigate the distress caused by COVID-19 induced lock down. The scheme mainly aims to ease livelihood of people dependent on MSMEs.
It provides collateral free and fully guaranteed additional credit to MSMEs, MUDRA borrowers and business enterprises. It provides additional credit to MUDRA borrowers to the extent of 20% of their credit outstanding. Also, it provides additional credit to MSMEs with Rs 25 crores of outstanding. However, only those MSMEs with more than Rs 100 crores of turnover are eligible.
The Kamath Committee identified twenty-six stressed sectors. The ECLGS scheme was extended to these sectors as ECLGS 2.0. It mainly focused on entities in health care sector with an outstanding credit between Rs 50 crores and Rs 500 crores.
This is the recently launched scheme. It extended the credit up to 40% of the total credit outstanding.
The Bitcoin currency tumbled more than 4% after the Central Bank of Turkey banned the use of Crypto currencies and crypto assets for purchases. The bank cited possible irreparable damages and transaction risks as the reason for the ban.
In March 2021, the Turkish President Erdogan fired the top central banker Naci Agbal. This forced several businessmen to turn towards crypto currency as an alternate method. This increased the growth of crypto currency market in Turkey. Bitcoin had surged by 111% and the second largest crypto currency Ethereum jumped by 225%.
However, after the ban, the Bitcoin was down by 4.6%. The Bitcoin was at 60,333 USD after the ban. The other smaller coins such as XRP, Ethereum that tend to move in tandem with bitcoin fell between 6% and 12%.
The recent Turkey regulations of Crypto currency mainly targets payments using crypto currencies for goods and services. It also prohibits companies from handling electronic fund transfers that involve crypto currency platforms.
The consumer complaints against crypto currencies increased by 8,616% in February 2021 as compared to that of the previous year.
According to Turkey, the Turkish Government was finding it difficult to monitor and control the market volatility and illegal activities in the crypto currency market. Also, the wallets were highly vulnerable to thefts.
The Turkish Government predicts that the anonymity behind the digital tokens will bring risks of non-recoverable losses.
The Ministry of Rural Development recently launched the Gender Samvaad Event. It is a joint initiative between DAY-NRLM and IWWAGE. The main objective of Gender Samvaad event was to create awareness on gender related interventions under the DAY-NRLM.
More than sixty million women are now part of DAY-NRLM. It plays a major role in organising them into Self Help Groups. These platforms facilitate livelihood support services for women and facilitates financial opportunities.
The DAY-NRLM launched a gender operational strategy in 2016 to mainstream gender issues. This was achieved through training and capacity building of staff. Also, institutional platforms were established so that women could approach them for their grievances.
It is a poverty relief programme. It is partially supported by the World Bank. It was begun with an agenda to cover seven crore rural poor households through Self Help Groups and support them for livelihoods.
The US President Joe Biden has planned to lift the refugee cap by May 2021. The former President Donald Trump had imposed historically low cap, on refugees. Trump had earlier set the Refugee cap to 15,000. This was the lowest in the history of the US.
President Joe Biden recently signed an order to keep the refugee cap to 15,000 as of now. This is the same numbers as proposed by Trump. This is creating controversies in the United States as Biden had proposed to increase the refugee cap by four times as compared to that of Trump administration. This was one of the major instruments of campaign during US Elections that was held in 2020. Biden is facing criticism that he is postponing his promises.
Mr Biden had earlier proposed to the US Congress that he will increase the refugee cap to 62,500. Under his proposal, 7,000 slots were reserved for refugees from Africa, 1,500 from Europe and Central Asia, 1,000 from East Asia, 3,000 from Latin America, 1,500 from south Asia, 3,000 from Latin America and Caribbean. And a reserve of thousand slots shall be used as needed.
As of March 31, 2021, the United States has so far admitted 2,050 refugees. This is under Trump administration cap of 15,000.
The United States recently released its report on Macroeconomic and Foreign Exchange Policies of Major Trading Partners of the United States. The report reviewed currency practices of the biggest trading partners of the US.
The three main criteria used by the report to review the trading partners of US are as follows:
The Indian Wrestler Vinesh Phogat has won her maiden Gold at the Asian Wrestling Championship. She won the medal beating Taipei’s Meng Hsuan Hsieh.
Vinesh had earlier won four bronze and three silver medals. This is her third gold medal, but first at the Asian Wrestling Championship.
Vinesh Phogat is an Indian wrestler. She was the first Indian woman to win gold at Asian Games and Common Wealth. Also, she was the first Indian athlete to be nominated for Laureus World Sports Awards.
She won Arjuna Award in 2016, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award in 2020. Also, she was a Padma Shri nominee in 2018 by the Sports Authority of India.
Anshu Malik and Sonam Malik have been included in the Target Olympic Podium Scheme. Their names were included in the scheme after they attained their Tokyo Olympic Quotas at the Asian Wrestling Olympic qualifier.
Six athletes were recently added to the Target Olympic podium Scheme. This includes four sailors and two athletes. This decision was taken during the fifty sixth meeting of Mission Olympic Cell. The cell also decided that all the Olympic qualified athletes will be supported through Target Olympic Podium Scheme.
The scheme was launched under the ambit of National Sports Development Fund. The main aim of the scheme is to identify and prepare potential medal prospects for the Olympic games. Currently nine sports disciplines have been identified as “high priority category” under the scheme. They are badminton, athletics, hockey, shooting, weight lifting, tennis, wrestling, boxing, archery.
The National Sports Development Fund was established under the Charitable Endowment Act, 1890. It was established in 1998.
The Lyrid Meteor shower is active each year in the month of April. In 2021, they are expected to begin on April 19, 2021. They are generally referred to as April Lyrids.
A meteor shower occurs when the earth passes through the path of a comet. As the earth moves nearby, the bits of comet debris comes under the influence of the earth’s gravity. As they are pulled by the gravitational force of the earth, they begin to move towards the earth. When this happens, they burn up due to the friction created by the Earth’s atmosphere. The burning up of these debris is seen as streaks of light in the night sky and are called meteor showers.
The International Astronomical Union has listed the famous meteor showers. The following are the popular and well-established meteor showers in the world:
The Madras High court recently pronounced that the Right to Privacy of a deceased person cannot be inherited.
J Deepa, niece of former Chief Minister J Jayalalitha filed a plea in the High Court to stop the release of a biopic “Thalaivi”. The movie is based on the life of the former CM. According to the petitioner, the movie is defaming her reputation. Also, life story of Jayalalitha cannot be filmed without adding the life of her relatives into it. By this it will amount to invade her (Deepa’s) privacy as well.
The High Court pronounced that the movie is subjected to the certifications given by CBFC. And the CBFC is yet to go through the contents of the movie. Also, personality, privacy and reputation enjoyed by a person during his or her life time ends with his or her death.
The rules were recently released in February 2021. After COVID-19, the movies were released in digital platform like amazon prime, Netflix. These new rules largely cover Over the Top (OTT) media services. There are currently forty OTT service provides in India. OTT market in India is growing largely. In 2018, the OTT market value was Rs 21.5 billion and in 2019 it grew to Rs 35 billion.
The National Institute of Virology recently shared a data showing the break up of 361 genome sequenced samples that were collected between January and March 2021.
The B.1.617, that is, the double mutant corona virus variant was first reported in Maharashtra. In February 2021, around eighteen districts of Maharashtra reported about the variant.
Immune Escape is the ability of the pathogen to evade immunity response of human bodies. In simple words, the antibodies created after vaccination may not protect a person from getting infected. If the new double mutant variant shows immune escape, it will have deep ramifications for the vaccination programmes of India.
The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs recently launched the EatSmart Cities Challenge and Transport 4 All Challenge. The main objective of the EatSmart Cities Challenge is to create an environment of right food practices and habits. The Transport 4 all challenge aims to make public transport safe, comfortable, affordable and reliable.
The National Electric Mobility Mission plan was launched to promote hybrid and electric vehicles. The FAME India mission was launched to expand the market of electric vehicles by increasing their production in the country.
The Ministry of Commerce and Industry Shri Piyush Goyal recently chaired the first meeting of the National Startup Advisory Council.
The Government of India defines startup as an entity that is headquartered in India, has an annual turn over less than Rs 100 crores and has opened less than ten years ago.
The Reserve Bank of India recently established the Regulations Review Authority (RRA) 2.0. The authority is to function for a period of one year.
Earlier, RRA was set up in 1999-2000. The authority then reviewed the regulations of the apex bank, simplified regulatory prescriptions, reduced reporting burden.
In February 2021, RBI set an expert committee under NS Vishwanath. The committee was established to review the Urban Cooperative Banks. It will assess the impact of the Urban Cooperative Banks over the last five years.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare recently released the Rural Health Statistics Report. According to the report, there is an overall shortage of specialist doctors at the Community Health Centres.
The Community Health Centres are considered as the backbone of rural health care system of India. These Centres should have at least thirty beds. They should cover at least four primary health centres with specialized services. Every Community Health Centre should be manned by four medical specialists such as physician, surgeon, gynecologist and a pediatrician.
The Primary Health Centre should consist of four to six beds, 14 subordinate paramedical staff.
These are the most peripheral contact point between primary health care system and the community. It should consist of on HW (Female) or ANM and one HW (male). HW is Health Worker and ANM is Auxiliary Nurse Midwife.
Every year, the World Haemophilia Day is celebrated on April 17 by the World Federation of Haemophilia. This year, the World Haemophilia Day is celebrated under the following theme
The day is being celebrated since 1989 by the World Federation of Haemophilia. Every year several iconic structures in the world are lighted in red to raise awareness and help those affected by the disorder.
The day is celebrated on April 17 to commemorate the birthday of Frank Schnabel. Frank founded the World Federation of Haemophilia.
It was founded in 1963. The headquarters of the World Federation of Haemophilia is located in Montreal, Canada.
75% of the people affected from bleeding disorder do not know it. Several others do not receive proper care. Therefore, it is essential to celebrate the day and increase awareness about the disease.