Current Affairs of 7 February


6th Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Statement
Monetary Policy Statement
6th Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Statement - RBI has released 6th Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Statement. Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decided to reduce the policy repo rate under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) by 25 basis points from 6.5% to 6.25% with immediate effect. Consequently, the reverse repo rate adjusted to 6.0%, and the marginal standing facility (MSF) rate and the Bank Rate to 6.5%. Retail inflation declined from 3.4% in October 2018 to 2.2% in December, the lowest print in the last eighteen months.
Repo rate – 6.25% (Decreased 0.25%)
Reverse Repo – 6% (Decreased 0.25%)
Cash Reserve Ratio – 4% (Unchanged)
Statutory Liquidity Ratio – 19.25% (Unchanged)
Bank Rate – 6.5% (Decreased 0.25%)
Marginal Standing Facility – 6.5% (Decreased 0.25%)

Gujarat International Finance Tec-City
GIFT City
Gujarat International Finance Tec-City - The Cabinet has approved the setting up of a unified authority that would regulate all the financial services in International Financial Services Centres (IFSC), such as the Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT) in Gandhinagar. This is to be done through the International Financial Services Centres Authority Bill, 2019.

International Financial Services Centres
IFSC
International Financial Services Centres - An International Financial Services Centres (IFSC) is aimed at encouraging Indian companies that are conducting business in foreign financial centres such as London and Singapore, to bring that business to India by providing them with a global-standard regulatory and business environment.  It would provide Indian corporates easier access to global financial markets. Currently, the banking, capital markets and insurance sectors in IFSCs are regulated by multiple regulators, i.e. RBI, SEBI and IRDAI.

Atal Bihari Vajpayee Medical University
Atal Bihari Vajpayee
Atal Bihari Vajpayee Medical University - The Uttar Pradesh government announced that Rs 50 crore has been proposed in the budget to set up the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Medical University in Lucknow. Similarly, Rs 10 crore has been proposed for setting up an Ayush University in the state.

100 Days Guaranteed Employment For Urban Youth
Guaranteed Employment For Urban Youth
100 Days Guaranteed Employment For Urban Youth - Madhya Pradesh has become the first state in the country to provide 100 days guaranteed employment for the unemployed urban youth. An unemployed urban youth between the age of 21 and 30 years with a family income of less than Rs 2 lakh will get 100-days of training and employment under this new scheme. There is no minimum qualification required to register but training will be given according to educational qualifications.

Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog
Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog
Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog - The Union Cabinet approved the proposal for establishment of Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog for conservation, protection and development of cows and their progeny. The setting up of the Aayog was announced in the Union Interim Budget 2019-20.

Linkage of PAN and Aadhaar
Linkage of PAN and Aadhaar
Linkage of PAN and Aadhaar - Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) Chairman Sushil Chandra said the Income Tax department has so far issued 42 crore permanent account numbers (PAN), of which 23 crore have been linked with Aadhaar, even as the deadline to link the two comes to an end on March 31, 2019.  Supreme Court also has made it mandatory that Income Tax returns will be filed with Aadhaar and the last date for linking PAN with Aadhaar is March 31.

Godavari-Cauvery River Linking Scheme
River Linking Scheme
Godavari-Cauvery River Linking Scheme - Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami said work on the Godavari-Cauvery river linking scheme, envisaged by the Centre, would soon begin. The scheme would enable Tamil Nadu to get 200 tmc feet water from the Godavari in Andhra Pradesh, which would otherwise flow into the sea. The scheme will provide a permanent solution to meet the drinking water and agriculture needs of 20 districts in Tamil Nadu.

International Intellectual Property Index
Intellectual Property Index
International Intellectual Property Index - According to US Chamber of Commerce’s Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC) India has climbed eight places up in the annual International Intellectual Property (IP) Index which analyses the IP climate in 50 world economies. The seventh edition of the index shows India jumping eight places in the ranking from 44th of 50 economies in 2018 to 36th in 2019. The US, the UK, Sweden, France and Germany are the top five in the Index.

Collateral Free Agricultural Loans
Collateral Free Agricultural Loans
Collateral Free Agricultural Loans - The Reserve Bank of India decided to join the government in offering some relief to small and marginal farmers by raising the limit of collateral-free agricultural loans to Rs 1.6 lakh from Rs 1 lakh. The RBI also proposed to set up an internal working group to review various issues plaguing farm credit, such as regional disparity, extent of coverage and limited capital formation from such credit.

Asia LPG Summit
Asia LPG Summit
Asia LPG Summit - Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan, Union Minister for petroleum and natural gas, inaugurated the 2019 Asia LPG summit in New Delhi. The summit has been organized jointly by the major Indian oil marketing companies (OMCs) Indian Oil, Hindustan Petroleum and Bharat Petroleum together with the World LPG Association (WLPGA) in New Delhi. This two-day event will focus on ‘LPG – Energy for Life.’

Darwaza Band- Part 2
Darwaza Band
Darwaza Band- Part 2- 'Darwaza Band- Part 2' campaign launched by Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen focuses on sustaining the open defecation free status of villages across the country. Earlier Darwaza Band campaign was launched in 2017. The campaign launched by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation in Mumbai in the presence of actor Amitabh Bachchan.

India Size Project
India Size Project
India Size Project - Union Minister of Textiles Smriti Irani launched the India Size project in Mumbai.  A first-of-its-kind project in the history of the country, India Size aims to arrive at a standard Indian Size for the ready-to-wear clothing industry, on the lines of the standardized sizes available in countries such as the USA and the UK.

Pradeep Singh Kharola
Pradeep Singh Kharola
Pradeep Singh Kharola - The government appointed Air India chief managing director and Chairperson Pradeep Singh Kharola the secretary of the Ministry of Civil Aviation. Kharola will take over from Rajiv Nayan Choubey.

Sanjiv Chadha
Sanjiv Chadha
Sanjiv Chadha - The State Bank of India’s Uk chief Mr. Sanjiv Chadha has been honored with the ‘Freedom of the City Of London’ by the city of London Corporation in recognition of his contribution to promoting the bilateral relations.

Smriti Mandhana
Smriti Mandhana
Smriti Mandhana - Indian opener Smriti Mandhana hammered the fastest fifty for India in Women’s T20Is.The left-handed batswoman struck a half-century in just 24 balls in the 1st T20I against New Zealand at Westpac Stadium in Wellington. New Zealand’s Sophie Devine holds the record of the quickest half-century in women’s T20Is in just 18-balls.

India and Germany Signed MoU
India and Germany Signed MoU
India and Germany Signed MoU - India and Germany have joined hands for cooperation on Water and Waste Management. During the meeting of 3rd Indo-German Working Group for cooperation on water and waste management which concluded in New Delhi, both sides discussed potential cooperation in this area.

New Guidelines For Political Ads
New Guidelines For Political Ads
New Guidelines For Political Ads - Ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, Facebook announced changes in the way political ads appear on its platform. Social media users will now be able to see political ads with “published by” or “paid for by” disclaimers that have been specified by advertisers.

Bike Ambulance
Bike Ambulance
Bike Ambulance - With an aim to provide emergency healthcare services in congested areas, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal launched bike-ambulance services in the capital. As many as 16 GPS-enabled bike ambulances were flagged off on a pilot basis in east Delhi in the first phase.

India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Committee Meeting
India-Bangladesh
India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Committee Meeting - The 5th India-Bangladesh Joint Consultative Committee Meeting will be held in New Delhi. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Foreign Affairs Minister of Bangladesh Dr. A. K. Abdul Momen will co-chair the meeting. It is the first high-level visit from Bangladesh since Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's victory in the parliamentary elections in December last year.

Income-Tax Ombudsman Abolished
Income-Tax Ombudsman Abolished
Income-Tax Ombudsman Abolished - The Union Cabinet approved the proposal for abolition of institution of Income-Tax Ombudsman and Indirect Tax Ombudsman. The approval comes after the government took into account that complaint redressal mechanisms chosen by public and Ombudsman could not prove to be more effective than regular existing parallel channels of grievance redressal.

Cabinet Decision

Cabinet Decision
# The Cabinet has approved the signing of a MoU between India and Malaysia for Mutual Cooperation to raise the status and prestige of the Practicing Company Secretary in both countries and to facilitate the movement of the Company Secretaries across borders in the Asia-Pacific Region.
# The Union Cabinet approved the proposal for an MoU between India, the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN) and Electoral Tribunal of Panama (ETP) on cooperation in the field of electoral management and administration.
# The Union Cabinet approved the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Norway on India-Norway Ocean Dialogue. The MoU will promote cooperation in the areas of mutual interest pertaining to the development of blue economy. 
# The Union Cabinet approved MoU between India and Brazil on cooperation in the field of Traditional Systems of Medicine and Homoeopathy. India is blessed with well-developed systems of traditional medicine including medicinal plants, which hold potential in the global health scenario. 
# The Union Cabinet approved the MoU between the Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare and the Ministry of Fisheries, Marine Resource and Agriculture of Maldives. The MoU was signed on December 17, 2018 during the State visit of President of Maldives to India.
# The Union Cabinet approved the MoU between India and the United Arab Emirates on Development Cooperation in Africa. The MoU entails setting up of a framework of cooperation between the two countries for implementing development partnership projects and programmes in Africa.
# The Union Cabinet approved signing of agreement between the India and Ukrain for cooperation in Agriculture and Food Industry. A Joint Working Group comprising of representatives from both countries would be constituted. 
# The Union Cabinet approved the MoU between India and Uzbekistan for promoting bilateral cooperation in the field of e-Governance. The Agreement intends to promote close cooperation in the areas of e-Governance, IT education, Implementation and roll out of generic configurable e-Governance products in various sectors.
# The Union Cabinet approved the framework agreement between India and Indonesia on cooperation in the exploration and uses of outer space for peaceful purposes.  The Framework Agreement was signed to enable the potential interest areas of cooperation such as, space science, exploration of outer space, use of space technology, and remote sensing of the earth.
# The Union Cabinet approved the introduction of National Institutes of Food Technology, Entrepreneurship and Management Bill, 2019 in the Parliament. The objective of the bill is to confer the status of Institutions to National Importance to National Institute of Food Technology, Entrepreneurship and Management (NIFTEM) at Kundli, Haryana, and the Indian Institute of Food Processing Technology (IIFPT) at Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu.
# The Union Cabinet approved the establishment of Circuit Bench of Calcutta High Court at Jalpaiguri. It will have jurisdiction over four districts namely Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Jalpaiguri and Cooch Behar.