1. Government may set up Central Factory Safety Board and State Factory Safety Boards in each State.
- After the gas leak incident at LG Polymers last May, Central government is considering plans to set up Central Factory Safety Board and State Factory Safety Boards in each State.
- Styrene vapor was leaked at LG Polymers Ltd in Visakhapatnam on May 6 and 7 last year. This killed 12 persons and injured many.
- Factories Act 1948, Indian Boilers Act 1923, Indian Electricity Act 1910, Petroleum Act 1934, Explosives Act 1884 currently governs Industrial safety in factories.
- Central Factory Safety Board will be a single-point agency to set up safety norms and standards.
- Constituting of all State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs) as “authorities” is proposed under the Environment (Protection) Act. For category B projects, SPCBs will be the final authority.
- All category A projects will be sent to Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF & CC) for clearance.
2. A virtual introductory meeting held between India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Steel and US Secretary of Energy.
- A virtual introductory meeting was held between India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Steel and US Secretary of Energy.
- During the meeting, two leaders reviewed India-US Strategic Energy Cooperation (SEP). Two leaders agreed to prioritize greater collaboration in joint R&D through Partnership to Advance Clean Energy Research (PACE-R).
- They also agreed to prioritize greater collaboration in biofuels, Carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) and hydrogen production.
- India and US also agreed to convene a third meeting of a revamped India-US Strategic Energy Partnership. They will soon convene third meeting of a revamped India-US Strategic Energy Partnership.
- Carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) is a technology for reduction of carbon emissions.
3. OCI cardholders will no longer be required to carry old, expired passports for travel to India.
- OCI cardholders will no longer be required to carry old, expired passports for travel to India.
- This is based on a statement by Indian embassy on its website. The statement referred to a notification issued by central government in this regard.
- The embassy said that OCI cardholder travelling on the basis of an existing OCI card bearing old passport number is not required to carry the old passport. However, embassy further said that carrying the new (current) passport is mandatory.
- As per embassy, the deadline to get OCI Card re-issued for people below the age of 20 years and people above the age of 50 years has also been extended until 31 December 2021.
- As per current guidelines, an OCI Card is required to be re-issued each time a new passport is acquired by cardholder below the age of 20 years and above the age of 50 years. These guidelines are in force since 2005.
Topic: Corporates /Companies
4. HPCL acquires stake in HPCL Shapoorji Energy Private Limited (HSEPL) from SP Ports Private Limited.
- Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) acquires a stake in HPCL Shapoorji Energy Private Limited (HSEPL) from SP Ports Private Limited.
- After the acquisition, HSEPL will become a wholly-owned unit of HPCL. HSEPL is building an LNG terminal at Chhara in Gujarat’s Gir-Somnath district.
- SP Ports is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Shapoorji Pallonji Infrastructure Capital Company Private Limited (SP Infra).
- Simar Port Pvt Ltd is building the Greenfield port at Chhara. Simar Port Pvt Ltd is a wholly-owned subsidiary of SP Ports.
Topic: Indian Economy
5. CEA Krishnamurthy Subramanian says that disinvestment target of Rs 1.75 lakh crore for 2021-22 is achievable.
- Chief Economic Advisor (CEA) has said that disinvestment target of Rs 1.75 lakh crore for 2021-22 is achievable.
- CEA said that privatization of Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL) will raise Rs 75000 crore to Rs 80,000 crore. LIC listing will raise nearly Rs 1 lakh crore.
- CEA expressed optimism that the economy will expand at about 6% to 6.5% from 2022-23. He said that economic growth would return to 7 to 7.5%.
- He also said that more banks are needed in India. He said that USA has one-third of India’s population. However, it has 25,000 to 30,000 banks.
Topic: Indian Economy
6. Board of Approval for SEZs defers Mundra Solar’s request for extension of approval.
- Board of Approval for SEZs has deferred Mundra Solar’s request for extension of approval.
- Mundra Solar is an SEZ unit manufacturing solar cells and modules in Adani Ports and SEZ (APSEZ) at Mundra, Gujarat.
- Board of Approval for SEZs has however, granted one-year extension of approval to Pharmaceutical major Wockhardt.
- Wockhardt has sought approval for its unit at Wockhardt Infrastructure Development SEZ in Aurangabad.
- Basic customs duty of 25% on imported solar PV cells and 40 % on imported solar PV modules will be imposed with effect from April 1, 2022.
- Board of Approval is the top decision-making body for SEZs. It is headed by the Commerce Secretary. It comprises senior officials from other ministries and departments.
7. New rules, forms for trusts and non-profit organisations notified by CBDT.
- New rules, forms for trusts and non-profit organisations have been notified by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT).
- The forms for the new scheme for trusts which will be effective from 1 April 2021 have been notified by CBDT. Old trusts will also be required to apply through new forms.
- The new format of application is to grant the approval of a fund, trust, institution, university, any hospital or other medical institution under different clauses and provisions of Section 10.
- As per the provisions of section 10, incomes from some funds, trusts, institutions, universities, hospitals are not included in total income for taxation.