Home Daily Updates IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 04 - MARCH - 2016
IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 04 - MARCH - 2016
Friday, 04 March 2016 03:41

 

RMI'S Current Affairs - https://www.facebook.com/RMIS-Current-Affairs

DAILY NEWS UPDATES

04-MARCH- 2016

 

HIGHLIGHTS OF RAILWAY BUDGET 2016-17 IN QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS FORMAT (Q & A FORMAT)

For the Convenience, the Highlights of Railway Budget, 2016-17 have been complied in questions and answers format which is given below : -

Rail Budget 2016-17

Q. WHAT IS THE THEME OF THIS BUDGET?

· To Reorganise, Restructure and Rejuvenate Indian Railways.

· A new approach, a new way of working - “चलो, मिलकर कुछ नया करें”.

· Objectives:

to improve customer service,

regain the lost modal share, and

to introduce a new way of working by relooking the processes and structures.

·3 pillars of the strategy :

Nav Arjan or New revenues (focus on new sources of revenue),

Nav Manak or New norms (optimising outgo on each activity), and

Nav Sanrachna or New Structures (revisiting all processes, rules, and structures).

Q IS THIS BUDGET REFORM ORIENTED?

·Yes, the Budget 2016-17 focusses on consolidation of the vision set out in the Budget 2015-16.

· Draft Bill on regulator to be finalized

· Restructuring Railway Board on business lines

· Forming cross-sectoral directorates

· Setting up Railway Planning and Investment Organisation

· Setting up a holding company for Railway PSUs

· Creating a separate organization Special Railway Establishment for Strategic Technology & Holistic Advancement (SRESTHA) for R&D

· Creating an organization Special Unit for Transportation Research and Analytics (SUTRA) for data analytics

· Setting up duly empowered missions to take forward 7 activities with time bound targets – missions are for switching over to 25 tonne axle load, increasing speeds, accounting reforms, commissioning 100 sidings/PFTs in 2016-17, preparing a blueprint of utilizing the network once DFC is commissioned, zero accident for safety and for procurement and consumption efficiency.

Q HOW IS CAPACITY AUGMENTATION PLANNED?

· Plan Budget is pegged at Rs. 1.21 lakh crore, 21% higher than the expected Plan expenditure in 2015-16.

· 2015-16 will surpass target of commissioning 2,500 km Broad Gauge lines.

· 2016-17 commissioning of 2,800 kms of Broad Gauge track.

· 90 new projects involving a total investment of Rs. 1,26,172 crore covering about 8,432 kms covering new line, doubling, gauge conversion and Metropolitan Transport Project (MTP) included in the Budget.

· In 2016-17, Broad Gauge lines at the rate of over 7 km per day against an average of about 4.3 Km per day in the last 6 years. This

· Pace will increase to about 13 kms per day in 2017-18 and 19 kms per day in 2018-19

· Railway Electrification - 1,600 kms to be commissioned in 2015-16; in 2016-17 propose to electrify 2,000 kms.

· High speed passenger corridor from Ahmedabad to Mumbai; SPV to be registered; will bring in modern technology for the country.

· DFC – three new freight corridors: North-South connecting Delhi to Chennai, East-West connecting Kharagpur to Mumbai & East Coast connecting Kharagpur to Vijayawada through innovative financing mechanisms including PPP

· Port connectivity: Tuna Port commissioned in 2015-16 and rail connectivity projects to ports of Jaigarh, Dighi, Rewas and Paradip under implementation. For 2016-17, to take up connectivity for the ports of Nargol and Hazira under PPP.

Q WHAT IS THERE FOR THE COMMON MAN?

· Introduction of Antyodaya Express, a long-distance, fully unreserved, superfast train service, to be operated on dense routes

· Addition of two to four Deen Dayalu coaches in some long distance trains for unreserved travel with facility for potable drinking water and a higher number of mobile charging points

· Sale of tickets through hand held terminals

· Sale of platform tickets through ticket vending machines both cash and card compatible

· E-ticketing facility to foreign debit/credit cards for foreign tourists and NRIs

· Facility of cancellation through the 139 helpline using ‘One Time Password’

· Bar coded tickets, scanners and access control on a pilot basis

· Progressive CCTV coverage at tatkaal counters

· ‘Vikalp’ (Alternative Train Accommodation System) scheme to be expanded to provide choice of accommodation in specific trains to wait-listed passengers.

· IRCTC to manage catering services in a phased manner.

· Extending e-catering services from 45 stations to all 408 ‘A-1’ and ‘A’ class stations.

· Explore making mandatory catering services optional in trains.

· Introducing a new policy where each stall at station can provide multiple products including milk products and OTC medicines

· Option to our customers for drinking tea in kulhad

· To convert all operational halts into commercial halts.

· Information boards in trains to list on-board services and also GPS based digital displays inside coaches to provide information regarding halts.

· A1 class stations to be manned with duly empowered Station Directors supported by cross functional teams.

· Passenger amenities and beautification on stations at pilgrimage centres including Ajmer, Amritsar, Bihar Sharif, Chengannur, Dwarka, Gaya, Haridwar, Mathura, Nagapattinam, Nanded, Nasik, Pali, Parasnath, Puri, Tirupati, Vailankanni, Varanasi and Vasco.

· Aastha circuit trains to connect important pilgrim centres.

·Porters to have new uniforms and train them in soft skills, to be henceforth called sahayak.

Q WHAT IS THERE FOR CLEANLINESS?

· ‘Clean my Coach’ service through SMS.

· Ranking of A1 and A stations based on periodic third party audit and passenger feedback.

· Waste segregation and recycling centres.

· ‘Awareness campaigns’ for cleanliness.

·Additional 30,000 bio-toilets.

· Providing portable structures with bio-toilets at all platforms of select stations for senior citizens, Divyang and women travellers.

Q WHAT IS THERE FOR FARMERS?

· Encouraging development of cold storage facilities on vacant land near freight terminals. Local farmers and fishermen would be given preferential usage of the facility. A policy in this regard would be issued in the next 3 months.

·Allowing floriculture/horticulture along tracks.

Q WHAT IS THERE FOR INDUSTRY?

· Expanding the freight basket by looking beyond core commodities

· Starting a time-tabled freight container, parcel and special commodity trains on a pilot basis

· Container sector to be opened to all traffic barring coal and specified mineral ores and part-loads during the non-peak season.

· Existing terminals/sheds to grant access to container traffic, where feasible

· Review of tariff policy to evolve a competitive rate structure vis a vis other modes, permit multi-point loading/unloading and apply differentiated tariffs to increase utilization of alternate routes

· Signing long term tariff contracts with key freight customers using pre-determined price escalation principles

· To develop Rail side logistic parks and warehousing in PPP mode

· 10 goods sheds to be developed by Transport Logistics Company of India (TRANSLOC) in 2016-17.

· Inaugurating soon India’s first rail auto hub in Chennai to capture automobile traffic.

· Exploring feasibility of opening up leasing of general purpose wagons.

· Appointing Key Customer Managers to liaison with our major freight stakeholders.

Q. WHAT ARE THE MEASURES FOR ENVIRONMENT AND ENERGY CONSERVATION?

· To reduce energy consumption in non-traction area by 10% to 15%; all new light provisions will be LED luminaire only

· More than 2,000 locations provided with Rain Water Harvesting (RWH) facility; RWH systems will be provided in a phased manner in all establishments having rooftop areas of more than 200 square metres

· Environmentally friendly composite sleepers made up of recycled plastic waste will be used over all girder bridges

· Tender documents for 50 MW solar plants at rooftop issued and facility for another 100 MW being set up

· To commission 132.5 MW of windmill power plants in 2016-17

· Automatic coach washing plants to be commissioned in major coaching depots with a holding of more than 500 coaches

· To convert all production units as well as at least one workshop in each Zonal Railway as green industrial unit

Q. ARE THERE ANY MEASURES IN THE BUDGET FOR STAFF WELFARE?

· To tie up with the Ministry of Health for ensuring an exchange between Railways hospitals and Government hospitals.

· Introduce ‘AYUSH’ systems in 5 Railway hospitals.

· All gang men to be provided devices called ‘Rakshak’ which will intimate them about approaching trains.

· to reduce weight of the tools carried by gangmen while patrolling

· Provide toilets and air-conditioning in cabs for loco pilots.

· One C T Venugopal chair on Strategic Finance, research and policy development

· One Kalpana Chawla chair on geo-spatial technology for IR.

· Rail University at Vadodara

· Skill development on IR premises with Ministry of Skill Development

· Railway Workshops and Production Units to develop ‘Centres of Excellence for Skill Development’, focussing on one/two specialized activities for the general public

· Join hands with prominent NGOs to provide skilling to people in remote areas including wards of Railways employees.

Q. ARE THERE ANY PASSENGER FRIENDLY INITIATIVES TO CATER TO SPECIAL NEEDS, INCLUDING SENIOR CITIZENS, DIVYANG (DIFFERENTLY-ABLED) ETC?

· Expansion of Sarathi Seva to help old and disabled passengers requiring assistance at stations.

· Strengthen existing services for enabling passengers to book battery operated cars, porter services, pick up and drop, and wheel chair services – Rail Mitra Sewa.

· Ensuring all stations under redevelopment are accessible by Divyang

· At least one Divyang friendly toilet at each platform in A1 class stations in 2016-17.

Q ARE THERE ANY MEASURES FOR THE BUSINESS TRAVELLER?

· For passengers transiting railway network for freshening up before moving on with their business for the day, hourly booking of retiring rooms to be allowed instead of the existing minimum of 12 hours.

· Retiring rooms to be handed over to IRCTC for management.

Q WHAT IS THERE FOR SUBURBAN SYSTEMS?

· Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP) III to be taken forward.

· Financial closure and an early award of tenders for two elevated suburban corridors between Churchgate-Virar and CSTM-Panvel

· Raise all low level platforms in Mumbai suburban stations in 2016-17

· Issues related to East West Corridor of Kolkata Metro resolved and Phase I will be completed by June 2018; working on the possibility of extending the East West Corridor by 5 km.

· Reviving the Ring Railway system in Delhi in partnership with the State Government.

· Major programme to build an integrated suburban ecosystem of IR by launching a new investment framework with sharing of equity contribution with the State Governments and ensuring cost neutrality on operations; detailed policy in 4 months.

· Partnership with State Governments of Gujarat, Telengana, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu for developing suburban sections in Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Thiruvananthapuram and Chennai, respectively by deploying innovative financing mechanisms.

Q ARE THERE ANY MEASURES FOR WOMEN?

· To make available of children’s menu items on trains.

· Baby foods, hot milk and hot water to be made available on stations

· Changing boards for babies would be provided in train toilets.

· CCTV cameras would continue to be installed in coaches

· Sub-quota in allotment of stalls

· Encouragement to self-help groups to supply food on trains

Q. ARE THERE ANY MEASURES FOR YOUTH?

· Open up IR to 100 students across Engineering and MBA schools for 2-6 months’ internships each year.

· Wi-Fi at 400 stations in next two years

· Rs. 50 crore earmarked for Innovation Fund for encouraging innovations and start-ups.

Q. ARE THERE ANY MEASURES FOR JOURNALISTS?

· E-booking of tickets on the concessional passes available to them

Q WHAT IS THERE FOR THE NORTH EAST & J&K?

· States of Mizoram and Manipur will come on the Broad Gauge map of the country with commissioning of the Kathakal-Bhairabi and Arunachal-Jiribam Gauge Conversion projects.

· Decongestion work on the Jalandhar- Jammu line, an important link to the valley, is going on in full swing. Doubling of two bridges will be commissioned by March 2016, while the other two bridges will be completed by 2016-17.

Q WHAT ARE THE PROVISIONS FOR TECHNOLOGY?

· Integrating various facilities into two mobile apps - one dealing with all ticketing issues and the other for receipt and redressal of complaints and suggestions.

· Physical progress on DFC to be monitored in 2016-17 using latest drone and Geo Spatial based satellite technology

· Initiated system wide integration of IT programs/systems, both horizontal and vertical, akin to an ERP through innovative partnership models.

· Process leading to award of tenders electronically to be rolled out on a Pan-India basis in 2016-17.

Q IS THERE ANYTHING RELATED TO INNOVATION AND STARTUPS?

· Setting aside a sum of Rs. 50 crore for innovation grants to employees, startups and growth oriented small businesses

· Innovation labs to be set up in workshops and production units to support creative innovation by locals and staff.

· Annual innovation challenge

· To develop a Test Track for testing prototypes.

Q WHAT IS THERE FOR STATE GOVERNMENTS?

· Creation of Joint Ventures with State Governments for undertaking rail based projects. Received in principle approval from 17 states, out of which 6 MOUs have already been signed.

· 44 new line, gauge conversion and doubling projects proposed in partnership mode

Q HOW ARE RESOURCES PROPOSED TO BE MOBILIZED?

· LIC has agreed to invest Rs. 1.5 lakh crore over five years on extremely favourable terms.

· Looking forward to setting up a Fund with multilateral assistance for financing railway projects.

· Non fare revenues

· Station redevelopment will help monetize land and buildings through commercial exploitation of vacant land and space rights over station buildings.

· Monetizing land along tracks

· Monetizing soft assets such as data, software and some of the free services such as PNR enquiry, e-commerce activities on IRCTC website.

· Target to increase the advertising revenues by more than 4 times the current revenues.

· To liberalize the current parcel policies including opening the sector to container train operators

· Expanding our service offerings specially to growing sectors such as e-commerce.

· Pilot project for online booking of parcels.

· Revenues from manufacturing activity of production units and workshops for domestic and international market; revenue targeted at Rs. 4,000 crore by 2020.

Q MAKE IN INDIA

· After agreement for setting up two loco factories in India with an order book of about Rs. 40,000 crore, a similar bid process started for train sets for Rajdhani and Shatabdi services; current procurement to be increased by 30%.

· Production units and workshops to aim at generating annualised revenues of about Rs 4,000 crore by 2020 through manufacturing products for domestic and international markets.

Q IS THERE ANYTHING SPECIAL FOR THE PASSENGER SERVICES?

For the unreserved passenger

· Antyodaya Express, a long-distance, fully unreserved, superfast train service, to be operated on dense routes.

·  Addition of two to four Deen Dayalu coaches in some long distance trains with facility for potable drinking water and a higher number of mobile charging points.

· For the reserved passenger

·Humsafar would be fully air-conditioned third AC service with an optional service for meals.

· Tejas will showcase the future of train travel in India. Operating at speeds of 130 kmph and above, it will offer onboard entertainment, local cuisine, Wi-Fi, etc.

· Overnight double-decker, Utkrisht Double-Decker Air-conditioned Yatri (UDAY) Express on the busiest routes.

· Modern coaches

· Designing coaches to ensure higher carrying capacity and automatic doors, bar-code readers, bio-vacuum toilets, water-level indicators, accessible dustbins, ergonomic seating, improved aesthetics, vending machines, entertainment screens, LED lit boards for advertising, PA system.

Q HAVE ANY SOCIAL INITIATIVES BEEN ANNOUNCED?

·  IRCTC has begun the process of empanelling Self-help groups for providing catering/cooking services.

· Partnering with NABARD to provide support and access to our IRCTC website to ensure extensive e- marketing for products produced by the Self-help groups.

· Partnered with Khadi and Village Industries Commission to support creation of employment and self-reliance in rural India resulting in the generation of 17 lakh man days; will continue to partner with them

· Will encourage sourcing of products from SC/ST entrepreneurs.

Q ARE THERE ANY MEASURES RELATED TO TOURISM?

· Partner with the State Governments for operating tourist circuit trains and explore the possibility of a revenue sharing model.

· Recently upgraded our National Rail Museum; promotion of tourism through Railway museums and UNESCO world heritage Railways

· To spread awareness about our National Animal, the Tiger, we will offer complete packages including train journey, safaris and accommodation to cover the wildlife circuit comprising Kanha, Pench and Bandhavgarh.

IGI AIRPORT BAGGED THREE INTERNATIONAL AWARDS

Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) received three international awards, including for best airport by size in the Asia Pacific region.

The ranking was announced by the ACI -- a trade association of the world's airports founded in 1991 -- for the 2015 Airport Service Quality (ASQ) Awards.

Delhi airport has retained the world's number one position for the second consecutive year in 25 to 40 Million Passengers Per Annum category. The two other awards are for best airport by size & region Asia Pacific (25-40 MPPA) and second best airport by region (Asia Pacific). In retaining the title, the IGIA scored 4.96 on a scale of 1 to 5 in the ASQ survey.

IGIA is managed by Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) -- a joint venture between the GMR Group, Airports Authority of India (AAI) and Fraport.

Airports Council International

Airports Council International (ACI) is the only global trade representative of the world’s airports. Established in 1991, ACI represents airports’ interests with governments and international organizations, develops standards, policies and recommended practices for airports, and provides information and training opportunities to raise standards around the world.

It aims to provide the public with a safe, secure, efficient and environmentally responsible air transport system.

TWITTER LAUNCHED #POSITIONOFSTRENGTH CAMPAIGN FOR WOMEN EMPOWERMENT

Micro-blogging site Twitter launched Position Of Strengthcampaign to empower women to raise voices against any form of discrimination.

The movement aims at bridging the gender equality gap online in India and inspire the next generation of women leaders to have an influential voice in society.

The campaign was previously run in Australia and Ireland, but this is the first time that it arrived in Asia.

Key highlights of the campaign

Twitter partnered with FICCI Ladies Organisation and Observer Research Foundation to engage more women to find their voices online, communicate safely with confidence and network with other like-minded women and the global community at large.

As part of the movement, Twitter and its partners will host a series of roundtables and workshops with women leaders to explore increased empowerment and safety for women, both online and in the physical world, throughout the year.

As part of supporting women on the platform, Twitter India will provide the users access to a safer online environment through the Twitter Safety Centre, which is also available in Hindi.

UNION BUDGET 2016-17: SOCIAL SECTOR

The Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley presentedthe Annual Financial Statement or the Union Budget for 2016-17 in the Lok Sabha. In his budget speech the minister listed nine pillars on which the Government will focus on in order to transform India into a developed nation.

The nine pillars are - Agriculture and farmers' welfare, rural sector,social sector including healthcare, education, skills and job creation, infrastructure, financial sector reforms, ease of doing business, fiscal discipline, tax reforms to reduce compliance burden.

The minister announced various initiatives to infuse new dynamism in social sector and empower the vulnerable at an estimated cost of151581 crore rupees in 2016-17.

New Initiatives

LPG connection to all BPL families

• The scheme seeks to provide universal coverage of cooking gas in the country.

• It is complimentary to Give It Up campaign under which 75 lakh middle class and lower middle class households who have voluntarily given up their cooking gas subsidy. The campaign was launched in March 2015 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

• Under this new scheme, LPG connections will be provided in the name of women members of poor households.

• 2000 crore rupees allocated for 2016-17 to meet the initial cost of providing these LPG connections.

• This will benefit about 1 crore 50 lakh households below the poverty line in 2016-17.

• The Scheme will be continued for at least two more years to cover a total of 5 crore BPL households.

• It will empower women and protect their health and will reduce drudgery and the time spent on cooking. It will also provide employment for rural youth in the supply chain of cooking gas.

New Health Protection Scheme

• Under this scheme, health cover up to one lakh rupees per familywill be provided to poor and economically weak families.

• For senior citizens of age 60 years and above belonging to this category, an additional top-up package up to 30000 rupees will be provided.

• This initiative is significant because catastrophic health events are the single most important cause of unforeseen out-of-pocket expenditure and pushes lakhs of households below the poverty line every year.

National Dialysis Services Programme

• It seeks to provide dialysis services at affordable cost in all district hospitals.

• Funds will be made available through Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode under the National Health Mission.

• It will benefit about 2.2 lakh new patients of End Stage Renal Disease who are added in India every year resulting in additional demand for3.4 crore dialysis sessions.

• In addition, certain parts of dialysis equipment were exempted from basic customs duty, excise/ Countervailing duties (CVDs) and special additional duty (SAD).

• The programme was launched as the existing 4950 dialysis centres are largely in the private sector and concentrated in the major towns. Moreover, these centres, because of their ownership and location, are able to meet only half of the demand.

National Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Hub

• It will provide professional support to Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe entrepreneurs to fulfill the obligations under the Central Government procurement policy 2012.

• It will adopt global best practices and leverage the Stand Up India initiative.

• It will be implemented in the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) in partnership with industry associations.

• Launch of the scheme also marks the 125th Birth Anniversary of Dr BR Ambedkar and fulfill the government’s intention to make it the Year of Economic Empowerment for SC/ST entrepreneurs.

Birth Anniversaries

100 crore rupees each allocated for celebrating the birth centenary of Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhyay and the 350th Birth Anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh.

Strengthening existing schemes

Stand Up India Scheme

• It was approved by the Union Cabinet in January 2016 to promote entrepreneurship among SC/ST and women entrepreneurs.

• 500 crore rupees allocated for this scheme in 2016-17 and this will benefit at least 2.5 lakh entrepreneurs.

• It will facilitate at least two such projects per bank branch, one for each category of entrepreneur.

Prime Minister’s Jan Aushadhi Yojana

• To reinvigorate the supply of generic drugs 3000 new Jan Aushadhi Stores will be launched in 2016-17.

• The scheme was launched in July 2015 to supply high quality generic medicines at the prices lower than the current market prices.

ARMAAN EBRAHIM WON FMSCI MOTORSPORTS MAN OF THE YEAR TROPHY

Car racer Armaan Ebrahim was awarded the Motorsports Man-of-the-Year Trophy at ceremony organised by the Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India (FMSCI).

Ebrahim was presented with the Raymond Gautam Singhania Rolling Trophy and cash prize of 2 lakh rupees for his performance in the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Asia Series.

On the other hand, B.I. Chandhok received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his contribution to motorsports in the country.

About Armaan Ebrahim

Armaan Ebrahim started his career in karting and became Formula LGB Champion in 2004.

He later moved to Formula BMW Asia for the 2005 season.

In 2005, he represented A1 Team India in the A1 Grand Prix Championship, driving in 6 races, before the team was disbanded due to lack of funds.

In 2007, he drove in Formula V6 Asia where he captured five race wins and finished second in points.

On 12 December 2008, he was announced as the first Asian driver to sign up for the rebirth of FIA Formula Two in 2009, driving car number six.

About Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India

The FMSCI was founded in 1971 and is a long-standing member of the Federation Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM) and the Federation International de l’Automobile (FIA), the world bodies for 2/3 and 4 wheeler motor sport respectively.

The FMSCI is the only national motor sport federation recognised by the Government of India for the promotion and control of motor sport in India.

It is also affiliated to the Indian Olympic Association.

INDO-SEYCHELLES JOINT TRAINING EXERCISE LAMITYE 2016 CONCLUDED

The seventh in the series of Indo-Seychelles Joint Training Exercises, Lamitye – 2016 concluded at Victoria, Mahe Island in Seychelles. It was conducted with an aim to improve interoperability between both Armies in jointly fighting Counter Insurgency and Terrorism.

The joint training was an ideal platform for fostering jointmanship and interoperability between the defence forces of both the countries.

Exercise Lamitye which means Friendship in Creole, has been a bridge between the Armed Forces of India and SPDF since 2001.

Highlights of the Exercise

• The infantry platoon and representatives from the Special Forces were comprised in Indian contingent.

• Tazar (Special Forces Unit) and Seychelles Infantry represented for The Seychelles People’s Defence Forces (SPDF).

• A total of 52 personnel from the SPDF took part in the exercise, including 20 Tazar (Special Forces Unit) personnel.

• It was focused on interoperability in drills pertaining to Counter Insurgency and Counter Terrorism and numerous activities and exercises were conducted during the joint training.

• Exercise Sea Hunt, was an apt culmination in which Cordon and Search operations were enmeshed with hostage rescue operations in an Anti-Piracy setting at Cape Ternay, with realistic orchestration of events extending over two days in an urban insurgency environment.

UNION BUDGET 2016-17: EDUCATION, SKILLS AND JOB CREATION

The Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley presentedthe Annual Financial Statement or the Union Budget for 2016-17 in the Lok Sabha. In his budget speech the minister listed nine pillars on which the Government will focus on in order to transform India into a developed nation.

The nine pillars are - Agriculture and farmers' welfare, rural sector, social sector including healthcare, education, skills and job creation, infrastructure, financial sector reforms, ease of doing business, fiscal discipline, tax reforms to reduce compliance burden.

The minister announced various initiatives with a focus on empowering India’s youth and provide them with quality education, better skills and more job opportunities.

New Initiatives

Education

Higher Education Financing Agency (HEFA)

• It seeks to empower Higher Educational Institutions so that they become world class teaching and research institutions and enhance affordable access to high quality education for ordinary Indians.

• It will be set up an initial capital base of 1000 crore rupees.

• It will be a not-for-profit organisation and will leverage funds from the market and supplement them with donations and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds.

• In the first phase, these funds will be used for infrastructure improvement in 10 public and 10 private institutions.

Digital Depository of Certificates

• Under this initiative, a Digital Depository for School Leaving Certificates, College Degrees, Academic Awards and Mark sheetswill be set up on the pattern of a Securities Depository.

• It will help Students, Higher Education Institutions and Employers to access degree certificates of candidates in digital form.

• It will help validate the authenticity, safe storage and easy retrieval of certificates.

Skill Development

• 1804 crore rupees allocated for various skill developments related initiatives in 2016-17.

• National Board for Skill Development Certification will be set up in partnership with the industry and academia under the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana.

 

Job Creation

Employees' Provident Fund related

• The Union Government will pay the Employee Pension Scheme contribution of 8.33 percent for all new employees enrolling in EPFO for the first three years of their employment.

• This will incentivize the employers to recruit unemployed persons and also to bring into the books the informal employees.

• In order to channelize this intervention towards the target group of semi-skilled and unskilled workers, the scheme will be applicable to those with salary up to 15000 rupees per month.

• 1000 crore rupees allocated to implement this scheme in 2016-17.

Deductions under Section 80JJAA of the Income Tax Act, 1961

• The Government proposed to broaden and liberalize the scope of the employment generation incentive available under Section 80JJAA of the Income Tax Act.

• The deduction will be available not only to assessees deriving income from manufacture of goods in a factory but to all assessees who are subject to statutory audit under the Act.

• Thus, a deduction of 30 percent of the emoluments paid to such employees can be claimed for three years.

• The minimum number of days for which they should be employed during the year is proposed to be reduced from 300 to 240 days.

• No deduction will, however, be admissible in respect of employees whose monthly emoluments exceed 25000 rupees.

• Also, no deduction will be admissible in respect of employees for whom the Government is paying the entire EPS contribution.

Career Service

• 100 Model Career Centres (MCCs) will be operationalised by the end of 2016-17.

• State Employment Exchanges will be inter-linked with the National Career Service platform. A National Career Service was launched in July 2015 and already 35 million jobs seekers have registered on this platform.

Model Shops and Establishments Bill

• The Union Government will circulate a Model Shops and Establishments Bill  that can be adopted by the State Governments on voluntary basis.

• It will allow small and medium shops to remain open on all seven days, which is, at present, applicable only to shopping malls.

• The model bill will be prepared, among other things, keeping the interest of the workers in terms of mandatory weekly holiday, number of working hours per day, etc.

Strengthening existing schemes

Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas Scheme

• 62 new Navodaya Vidyalayas will be opened in the remaining uncovered districts by 2017-18.

• The Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas Scheme was initiated in 1986.

• At present, there are approximately schools across India except Tamil Nadu.

Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY)

• The scheme was approved by the Union Cabinet in March 2015 an outlay of 1500 crore rupees.

• It seeks to impart skill training to youth with focus on first time entrants to the labour market and class 10 and class 12 drop outs.

• The scheme will scaled up to skill one crore youth over the next three years with an investment of 1700 crore rupees.

• New 1500 Multi Skill Training Institutes (MSTIs) will be set up across the country.

• Entrepreneurship Education and Training will be provided in 2200 colleges, 300 schools, 500 Government ITIs and 50 Vocational Training Centres through Massive Open Online Courses.

• Aspiring entrepreneurs, particularly those from remote parts of the country, will be connected to mentors and credit markets.

RURAL INDIA AND POOR ARE AT THE CENTRE OF UNION BUDGET

  • Dispelling all notions about the NDA government being a ‘Suit boot ki Sarkar’ in his third Budget, government dedicated it to farmers, the poor and vulnerable sections of society.
  • Union budget also raised taxes on the incomes of the super-rich and introducing new cesses on services and cars to fund farmer welfare projects and infrastructure, respectively.
  • Mr. Jaitley’s budget for 2016-17 attempted to address the distress in the rural economy that has hit demand creation and new investments, with enhanced outlays of nearly Rs. 2.75 lakh crore for programmes in the social sector, farmer welfare and the rural sector.
  • FM said “Our initiatives in the last 21 months have not only placed the economy on a faster growth trajectory but have bridged the trust deficit, created by the previous Government.”
  • He also said government had to work in an unsupportive global environment, adverse weather conditions and an obstructive political atmosphere.
  • Despite higher expenditure owing to the 7th Central Pay Commission and the one rank one pension norm for defence forces, the Finance Minister chose to stick to the fiscal consolidation road map he outlined last year and set a 3.5 per cent of GDP target for 2016-17.
  • The government will infuse a capital of Rs.25,000 crore this financial year into state- owned banks, which are reeling under the burden of bad loans.

ONE TIME FOUR MONTH COMPLIANCE WINDOW FOR DOMESTIC BLACK MONEY HOLDERS

  • The government has decided to open a one-time, four-month compliance window for domestic black money-holders.
  • This gesture is intended to help them come clean by paying tax and penalty of 45 percent.
  • Capability of the tax department to detectevasion had improved be- cause of increased access to information and the availability of technology-driven analytical tools to process such information.
  • The compliance window will enable one to declare undisclosed income or income represented in the form ofany asset, and clear up past tax transgressions by paying tax at 30 per cent, a surcharge of 7.5 per cent and a penalty of 7.5 per cent.
  • The surcharge at 7.5 per cent will be called Krishi Kalyan surcharge, and the money thus raised will be used for agriculture and rural economy.
  • There will be no scrutiny of money declared, either under the Income-Tax Act or the Wealth Tax Act.
  • And the declarants will have immunity from prosecution. They will also get immunity from the Benami Transaction (Prohibition) Act, 1988, subject tocertain terms.
  • The compliance window, named Income Disclosure Scheme, will open on June 1. It will be open till September 30.

AFTER REVELATIONS BY HOME SECRETARY HOME MINISTRY TO RE-LOOK AT ISHRAT JAHAN CASE

  • The Ministry of Home Afairs (MHA) has decided to re-examine the Ishrat Jahan files, amid allegations by the former Home Secretary G.K. Pillai that the affidavit citing the Mumbra woman’s allegiance to terrorist outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) was changed at the political level.
  • Mr. Chidambaram said on Monday that he “accepted responsibility for the affidavit” and “it is disappointing that the Home Secretary who was equally responsible wanted to distance himself today.”
  • The then UPA government had submitted two affidavits — one claiming that the four who were killed in an alleged fake encounter were terrorists and the second saying there was no conclusive evidence to prove they were — within two months in 2009.

SC WANTS CENTRE’S RESPONSE TO PRACTICE OF TRIPLE TALAQ

  • The Supreme Court on Monday admitted a petition filed by a woman to declare the practice of triple talaq, nikah halala and polygamy under Muslim personal laws as illegal, unconstitutional, and violative of the rights to equality, dignity, life and freedom of religion under the Constitution.
  • The petitioner said “Practice of polygamy is not an integral part of Islam, and polygamy has been recognised as injurious to pub- lic morals.”
  • The practices under challenge, which practically treat women like chattel belonging to men, are neither harmonious with the modern principles of human rights and gender equality nor an integral part of Islamic faith.
  • Ms. Bano said many Islamic nations, including Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and Iraq, have banned or restricted such practices, while they continue to vex not only Indian Muslim women but also the society at large, not- withstanding that the Muslim community of India has itself been clamouring for reform and ban of oppressive practices that have no basis in Islam or the Holy Quran.

VARIOUS PROVISIONS TO TAKE CARE OF MIDDLE CLASS: FM

  • Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday asserted that the budget will take care of the people’s fear of taxation.
  • The proposed extension ofthe simplified presumptive taxation regime to professionals including lawyers, doctors, architects and who report total gross receipts of less than Rs. 50 lakh under which profits will be deemed to be 50%, will further reduce the compliance burden of the middle class.
  • The increased rent deduction from Rs. 24,000 to Rs. 60,000 and the higher ceiling for tax rebate under Section 87A from Rs. 2,000 to Rs.5,000, he said, are all relief and benefits for the middle class.

BUDGET LOOKS AFTER MANUFACTURING SECTOR

  • Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced several proposals in the Union Budget 2016-17 to boost the government’s Make in India (MII) initiative.
  • To help start-ups innovate, generate employment, Mr.Jaitley proposed to back them through 100 per cent deduction of profits for three out of five years for start-ups set up during April 2016 to March 2019.
  • In another initiative, Mr. Jaitley chose to follow advanced nations and proposed to grant foreign investors ‘Residency Status’ subject to certain riders.
  • Currently, these investors are granted business visa only up to five years at a time.
  • To strengthen the MII initiative, there was an allocation of Rs.1,804 crore towards the scheme for Investment Promotion and Amended Technology Upgradation Fund.
  • Changes were proposed in Customs and Excise Duty rates on certain inputs, raw materials, intermediaries/components and other goods while several procedures were simplified.
  • Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced a record budgetary allocation of Rs. 2.21 lakh crore for infrastructure sector, in a crucial move to revive investments in the sector with the participation of the private players.
  • The roads sector alone has been allocated Rs. 97,000 crore as the government plans to award 10,000 kilometres of new road projects in FY17, including Rs. 19,000 crore earmarked for rural roads under the Pradhanmantri Gram Sadak Yojna.

FDI REFORMS WILL IMPROVE EASE OF DOING BUSINESS INDEX

  • To facilitate ease of doing business for foreign investors and their domestic recipients, the Union Budget 2016-17 has proposed liberalisation of foreign direct investment (FDI) norms in a host of sectors.
  • These include insurance, pension, Asset Reconstruction Companies (ARC), stock exchanges, marketing of food products, listed Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSE) except banks and areas governed by financial sector regulators, falling beyond the 18 specified NBFC activities.
  • This the second time such ‘big bang’ FDI reforms are being announced by the government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
  • In November last year, the Centre had similarly eased norms across 15 sectors, including defence, private sector banking, construction, single brand retail, broadcasting and civil aviation to boost investment sentiment and attract more foreign capital into the country.
  • Following these reforms and the Make in India initiative, FDI during April-December 2015 in FY’16 was up 40 per cent year-on-year to $29.5 billion.
  • To help banks and financial institutions (FI) address the problem of huge bad loans, the FY’17 Budget has proposed 100 per cent FDI in ARCs through automatic route.
  • ARCs play a crucial role in resolution of non-performing assets by acquiring them from banks and FIs.
  • The FY’17 Budget also proposed that foreign portfolio investors will be allowed up to 100 per cent of each tranche in securities receipts issued by ARCs subject to sectoral caps.
  • The government has also proposed to allow 100 per cent FDI through FIPB route in marketing of food products produced and manufactured in India.

SRI LANKA’S NORTHERN PROVINCE CM LOOKS FOR INDIA’S HELP IN CONSTITUTION

  • Chief Minister of Sri Lanka’s Northern Province C.V. Wigneswaran called upon India to ensure that the spirit behind the 13th Constitutional Amendment be retained in the new Constitution.
  • The 13th Amendment, an outcome of the 1987 India-Sri Lanka accord, is the “only document” through which India could function as the “guarantor” of interests and rights of Tamils in Sri Lanka.
  • Mr. Wigneswaran had said India alone could get “defect-free federal system.”

WHATSAPP TO END SUPPORT FOR BLACKBERRY

  • Messaging service provider WhatsApp will end its support by the end of this year to BlackBerry phones and those powered by Nokia’s Symbian operating system.
  • The Facebook-owned company has over a billion users globally. A major chunk of these users are from emerging markets like India.
  • Mobile operating systems offered by Google, Apple and Microsoft, account for 99.5 per cent of sales today.

 

The alpha/beta/gamma range of human behavior and the stressful world we live in, often has vibrating too much high, and we need to relax, slow down and returns to our inner health, balance and peak performance, not stay tuned to the exclusively human, may be due to false urban psycho freak out environment. We are all affected by the negativity of the Environment we live in as be it good or bad...even the innocent suffer too and we are ultimately responsible for creating this surrounding... we have to be the instrument for change...

At list Two vibrations must have the same frequency before a resonance pattern is formed... its hard when you are surrounded by ignorant, cruel people, as the saying goes , it takes courageous heart to be kind in the world were living in today.. But statuses like this remind us our part on this, planet and that is love and peace. So no negative can affect you unless you are like or attract negative, You can't honestly believe this is true. Negativity or negative actions of one person can, in fact, affect another person, even if that person is an actively loving individual and is being "positive". Even humanity does not protect you from getting hurt... And this is why there is anger in the world.:
‪#‎RAY‬ - ‪#‎Empowering‬ ‪#‎Talent‬ ‪#‎Since‬ 1971
www.rosemaryinstitute.com

Last Updated on Saturday, 05 March 2016 03:19