Current Affairs

3 April, 2021


With 25.5 Billion Real-Time Transactions in 2020, India retains Top Spot in Digital Payments: ACI Report 2021

According to the report ‘Prime-Time for Real Time’-2021 launched by ACI Worldwide and GlobalData, India with 25.5 Billion transactions topped the list of countries with most number of real-time transactions in Digital Payments in 2020. It was followed by China (15.7 Billion) & South Korea (6.0 Billion).
About ACI Worldwide
President – Odilon Almeida
Headquarters – Florida, USA


Fourth batch of 3 Rafale Jets reached India

Indian Air Force (IAF) received the fourth batch of 3 Rafale fighter jets from France, raising the total fleet count to 14. Previously, India ordered 36 fighter jets from French aerospace major Dassault Aviation for a cost of Rs. 59,000 crores. The 1st batch of 5 Rafale jets reached India in July 2020. Notably, this is India’s 1st major acquisition of fighter planes in the last 23 years, only after Russia’s Sukhoi jets. The 1st Rafale squadron is under operation in the Ambala air force station.

6-Digit HSN code mandatory in Invoices for Businesses with over INR 5 Crore Turnover: Finance Ministry

Starting from April 1, 2021, the Finance Ministry has made it mandatory for Businesses with turnover of more than INR 5 Crore to furnish 6-Digit HSN/SAC (Harmonised System of Nomenclature Code/Service Accounting Code) on invoices issued for supplies of taxable goods and services. Both HSN & SAC codes are used to classify goods & services under the GST regime.
i.Businesses with Turnover of up to INR 5 Crore in the Financial Year 2020-21 would be required to furnish 4-digit HSN code on B2B invoices.
ii.In India, HSN is already in use Dealers with turnover of less than INR 1.5 Crore do not need to adopt HSN codes for their commodities. Businesses with turnover between INR 1.5 Crore & 5 Crore use 2-digit HSN codes for their commodities.
About Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC):
Chairman – Ajit Kumar
Headquarters – New Delhi

ULPIN: Unique 14-digit ID for all Land Records by March 2022

Parliamentary Standing Committee on Rural Development announced, The Unique Land Parcel Identification Number (ULPIN), 14-digit unique identification number to every plot of land in India. Currently, the ULPIN scheme has been launched in 10 States and will be extended all over the country by March 2022.
i.All land will be identified based on longitude & latitude coordinates, solving issues related to outdated & disputed lands.
ii.ULPIN is a part of India’s Digital India Land Records Modernisation Programme (DILRMP).
Launched in 2008 as the National Land Record Modernization Programme (NLRMP).
Aim – To digitize & modernize land records and develop a centralised land record management system.
DILRMP has been extended till 2023-24.
New Initiative – National Generic Document Registration System (NGDRS).
About Ministry of Rural Development:
Union Minister – Narendra Singh Tomar
Minister of State – Niranjan Jyoti

Jaishankar highlights on Transport Connectivity in 17th BIMSTEC Ministerial Meet Chaired by Sri Lanka

External Affairs Minister(EAM), S. Jaishankar virtually addressed the 17th BIMSTEC (The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) Ministerial Meeting held Virtually from Colombo, Sri Lanka. The Meeting was chaired by Sri Lanka virtually. He highlighted the strategic importance of the master connectivity plan among the South and Southeast Asian countries.
BIMSTEC is group of 7 Asian countries,

Union Cabinet approves PLI Scheme for Food Processing Industry with an outlay of INR 10, 900 Crores

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved the Central Sector Scheme – ‘Production Linked Incentive Scheme for Food Processing Industry (PLISFPI)’ with a total outlay of INR 10, 900 Crores. Key Objectives – Creation of global food manufacturing champions & supporting Indian brands of food products in the International markets. Duration – six-year period from 2021-22 to 2026-27. Implementation – Rolled out on an All India basis, and will be implemented through Project Management Agency (PMA). It will facilitate expansion of processing capacity to generate processed food output of INR 33, 494 crores. It is expected to create employment for around 2.5 Lakh persons by 2026-27.
About Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI):
Union Minister – Narendra Singh Tomar (Lok Sabha MP, Constituency – Morena, Madhya Pradesh)
Minister of State – Rameswar Teli (Lok Sabha MP, Constituency – Dibrugarh, Assam)

India, US agree to revise India-US Strategic Energy Partnership (SEP)

India and the United States (US) have agreed to revise the India-US Strategic Energy Partnership (SEP). The revised SEP will have a greater focus on promoting clean energy with low-carbon pathways & accelerating green energy cooperation. On March 29, 2021, An Introductory meeting was held between Dharmendra Pradhan, Union Minister for Petroleum & Natural Gas (MoPNG) & Jennifer Granholm, U.S. Secretary of Energy. The two sides will accelerate efforts to take advantage of advanced U.S. Technologies & India’s rapidly growing energy market.
About United States (US)
President– Joe Biden
Capital– Washington, D.C.
Currency– United States Dollar (USD)

Government Extends Validity of ECLGS till June, 2021; ECLGS 3.0 Introduced to cover more Sectors

The Ministry of Finance has extended the validity of Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) by another 3 months till June 30, 2021 or till such time that an amount of INR 3 Lakh crore (Target Credit Line) is sanctioned under the Scheme. Additionally, the scope of ECLGS has been widened through introduction of ECLGS 3.0. ECLGS 3.0 covers business enterprises in Hospitality, Travel & Tourism, Leisure & Sporting Sector. The extension of validity is applicable for ECLGS 1.0, 2.0 & 3.0. Last date of disbursement under the scheme has been extended to September 30, 2021.
About Ministry of Finance:
Union Minister – Nirmala Sitharaman (Rajya Sabha MP representing Karnataka)
Minister of State (MoS) – Anurag Singh Thakur (Lok Sabha MP, Constituency – Hamirpur, Himachal Pradesh)


India recorded Current account deficit of $1.7 billion in Q3FY21: RBI report

As per the RBI’s report “Developments in India’s Balance of Payments during the Third Quarter (October-December) of 2020-21(Q3FY21)” on March 31, 2021, India has recorded a current account balance deficit of $1.7 billion (i.e. 0.2% of Gross Domestic Product(GDP) in Q3FY21) due to the COVID-19’s impact on trade.
About Reserve Bank of India (RBI):
Establishment – 1st April 1935
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
Governor – Shaktikanta Das

CDC tied up with Northern Arc for PBI to support MFIs

The CDC Group, the UK government’s development finance institution, has made a partnership with Northern Arc Capital Limited(NACL), for investing a total of Rs 320 crore under pooled bond issuance (PBI) to support six leading Indian microfinance institutions(MFIs). The investment will support MFIs by providing over 6.3 lakh micro-loans to low-income households, primarily female and rural borrowers. The 6 MFIs include Annapurna Finance, Arohan Financial Services, ASA International, Asirvad Microfinance Limited, Chaitanya India and Fusion Microfinance.
About CDC Group:
Establishment – 1948
Headquarters – London, United Kingdom
CEO – Nick O’Donohoe

NPCI set up a subsidiary firm – NPCI Bharat BillPay Ltd

The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) formed its wholly-owned subsidiary firm called NPCI Bharat BillPay Limited (NBBL) to offer recurring payment services. NPCI transferred all its Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS) transaction mandates to the newly formed subsidiary. It has a paid-up capital of Rs 5 lakh and a Share capital of Rs 1 crore. Banks and payment aggregators on the Bharat Bill Payment Operating Units (BBPOU) platform have been asked to start accounting their billing transactions under NBBL from April 1, 2021.
About National Payments Corporation Limited (NPCI):
MD & CEO – Dilip Asbe
Headquarter – Mumbai, Maharashtra

Government retained the inflation target 4% with a +/-2% for the next 5 years

Government of India has decided to continue the existing inflation-targeting framework which fixed the inflation target (price stability) of 4% with a +/- 2% tolerance band (in the range of 2% – 6%) for the next 5 fiscal years i.e. FY22 to FY26. After framing the inflation target in 2016 the Retail inflation has fallen from26% in the pre inflation targeting phase to an average of 3.9% post its adoption (excluding the pandemic period).
About Reserve Bank of India (RBI):
Establishment – 1st April 1935
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
Governor – Shaktikanta Das


Indian Cricketer Virat Kohli Became Brand Ambassador Of Digit Insurance

Captain of the Indian Men’s cricket team, Virat Kohli became the brand ambassador of Digit Insurance, a general insurance company, which became the first unicorn of 2021 with a valuation of 1.9 Billion USD (around Rs. 13918 crores). As the brand ambassador of Digit Insurance, Virat Kohli will spread awareness about the Digit insurance mission towards making insurance simple. He will also create awareness about the importance of Insurance across India.
About Digit Insurance:
Chairman– Kamesh Goyal
CEO & Principal officer- Vijay Kumar
Headquarters– Bengaluru, Karnataka3


Former RBI Governor Urjit Patel appointed Additional Director of Britannia

Urjit Patel, former Reserve Bank Governor has been appointed as the Britannia Industry’s Additional Director in the category of Non-Executive and Independent Director with effect from 31st March 2021 for a term of 5 years i.e up to 30th March 2026. Urjit Patel was the Governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) during September 2016-December 2018 and was succeeded by Shaktikanta Das.

Mukhmeet S Bhatia Takes Over as the DG of ESIC

Mukhmeet S Bhatia assumed the charge as the Director General(DG) of Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC), under the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Government of India. Previously He served as the Additional Secretary in the Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance.
About Mukhmeet S Bhatia:
i.Mukhmeet S Bhatia is a 1990 batch IAS Officer of Jharkhand cadre.
ii.He has served as the Principal Secretary in the Department of Labour & Employment and Women & Child Development in the Government of Jharkhand.
About Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC):
Director General– Mukhmeet S. Bhatia
Headquarters– New Delhi

Labour Ministry sets up 3 Expert Committees to review standards under OSH & WC Code, 2020

The Ministry of Labour & Employment has constituted 3 Expert Committees to review standards under Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions (OSH & WC) Code, 2020.
i.The committees will review the existing rules & regulations on safety, health and working conditions standards, pertaining to factories, docks & Construction work.
ii.The heads of the 3 expert committees are Dr R K Elangovan, Director General, Factory Advice and Labour Institutes (DGFASLI) will head the Expert Committee for Factories & Dock Works. P L N Murthy, Vice President & Head Domestic Operations, L&T Hydrocarbon, Chennai will head the Expert Committee for Building & Other Constructions Works.
D K Shami, Fire Advisor to Government of India, Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) – Head of Expert Committee for Fire Safety.
Details of existing rules & regulation and reasons for review
Name of Rules & Regulations Reasons for Review
The Factories Rules framed under The Factories Act, 1948 To update them to meet the current requirements, It was last reviewed in 1998.
Dock Workers (Safety, Health Welfare) Regulations 1990 To incorporate the advancements and progress made in the field of OSH & WC.
The Building and Other Construction Workers (Regulation of Employment and Conditions of Service) Central Rules, 1998 To meet global standards in OSH&WC
About Ministry of Labour & Employment:
Minister of State (IC)- Santosh Kumar Gangwar (constituency – Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh)
About Slovakia
Capital : Bratislava
Currency: Euro

American Author Carmen Maria Machado wins 2021 Rathbones Folio Literary Prize

American Author Carmen Maria Machado won the Rathbones Folio Literary Prize for the year 2021 for memoir ‘In the Dream House’ (released in 2019). It is the only Literary prize which is open to all genres – Fiction, non-fiction, and poetry for writers around the world. Rathbones Folio Prize is a literary award that was backed by London-based publisher ‘The Folio Society’ in the initial two years (2014-15). From 2017, Rathbone Investment Management joined as the sponsor & name changed from Folio Prize to Rathbones Folio Literary Prize.

Rajinikanth to be Honoured with 51st Dadasaheb Phalke Award 2019

i.Prakash Javadekar, Union Minister, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting announced that Rajinikanth (70 years old) will be honoured with the 51st Dadasaheb Phalke Award for the year 2019 as a recognition of his contribution to the film industry as Actor, Producer and screenwriter.
ii.Rajinikanth will be the 12th South Indian to receive the Dadasaheb Phalke Award.
iii.The inaugural Dadasaheb Phalke Award was presented to actor Devika Rani at the 17th National Film Awards held in 1970.
iv.Dadasaheb Phalke Award, the highest honour for the artists of the Indian Film Industry was instituted in 1969.
About Ministry of Information and Broadcasting:
Union Minister- Prakash Javadekar (Rajya Sabha – Maharashtra)

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