Daily Current Affairs and GK | 2 February 2021

By PendulumEdu | Last Modified: 05 Feb 2021 16:29 PM IST

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Topic: Sports

1. Tamil Nadu clinched Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy.

  • Tamil Nadu won Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy by beating Baroda by seven wickets at the Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad.
  • It is the second time that Tamil Nadu has won the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. Dinesh Karthik was leading the Tamil Nadu team.
  • Tamil Nadu had won their first Syed Mushtaq Ali title in 2006-07.
  • Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy:

Topic: National News

2. Union Education Minister addressed ASEAN India Hackathon inaugural session.

  • The Union Education Minister Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ addressed the inaugural ceremony of ASEAN India Hackathon.
  • ASEAN-INDIA Hackathon is being organised by the Ministry of Education. It is being held from 1- 3 February. It is a 36 hours Hackathon.
  • Hackathon will help India and ASEAN countries in solving the challenges related to Blue Economy, agriculture, tourism, health care and education.
  • Hackathon will also help in strengthening the economic and cultural ties between India and ASEAN countries through cooperation in the field of education, science and technology.
  • Association of Southeast Asian Countries (ASEAN):
    • It was established on 8 August 1967. ASEAN includes 10 countries in Southeast Asia - Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Vietnam, Brunei, Myanmar (Burma), Cambodia, Laos.
    • ASEAN is India's fourth-largest trading partner and is headquartered in Jakarta, Indonesia.
    • ASEAN-India relations were upgraded into ASEAN-India Strategic Partnership in 2012.
    • ASEAN-India Plan of Action, 2016-2020 was adopted in 2015 by the ASEAN-India Foreign Ministers Meeting. 

asean-india hackathon

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Indian Economy

3. India’s first ever digital Union Budget presented by Union Finance Minister.

  • India’s first ever digital Union Budget presented by Union Finance Minister on 01 February 2021.
  • Union Budget 2021-22 is India's first ever digital Union Budget. Union Budget documents have not been printed in physical form for the first time.
  • Union Budget 2021-22 will be available online on ‘Union Budget Mobile App’. Union Budget 2021-22 has six pillars as given below.
    • Health and Wellbeing
    • Physical & Financial Capital and Infrastructure
    • Inclusive Development for Aspirational India
    • Reinvigorating Human Capital
    • Innovation and R&D
    • Minimum Government and Maximum Governance
  • In addition to budget speech, the budget also contains Annual Financial Statement (Article 112), Demands for Grants (Article 113), Finance Bill (110) and other documents.
  • Budget:
    • The budget in India is presented by the Finance Minister on the first day of February since 2016.
    • James Wilson presented the first budget in India on February 18, 1860.
    • After independence, the first union budget was presented on 26 November 1947 by independent India’s first Finance Minister, R.K. Shanmukham Chetty.

Topic: Indian Economy

4. Outlay for health and wellbeing in Union Budget 2021-22 increased to Rs. 2,23,846 crore.

  • Outlay for health and wellbeing in Union Budget 2021-22  increased from Rs. 94,452 crore to Rs. 2,23,846 crore.
  • This is an increase of 137% from last year. Rs. 35,000 crore has been allocated for COVID-19 vaccine in Budget Estimate 2021-22.
  • As per Union Budget 2021-22, Made-in-India Pneumococcal Vaccine will be launched all over India. Pneumococcal Vaccine will save 50,000 child deaths annually.  

health and wellbeing in Union Budget 2021-22

(Source: PIB)

  • Further, Union Budget 2021-22 announces that PM AatmaNirbhar Swasth Bharat Yojana will be launched as a new centrally sponsored scheme with an outlay of Rs 64,180 crore over 6 years.
  • Main interventions under PM AatmaNirbhar Swasth Bharat Yojana will be establishment of National Institution for One Health, 4 regional National Institutes for Virology and Integrated public health labs in all districts.
  • In Budget 2021-22, it has also been announced that Mission Poshan 2.0 will be launched and Rs. 2, 87,000 crore will be allocated over 5 years for Jal Jeevan Mission (Urban).
  • Jal Jeevan Mission (Urban) will be launched to provide 2.86 crore household tap connections, universal water supply in all 4,378 Urban Local Bodies and liquid waste management in 500 AMRUT cities.
  • Budget 2021-22 also proposes Rs. 1, 41,678 crore over 5 years for Urban Swachh Bharat Mission 2.0. It provides Rs. 2,217 crore for air pollution of 42 urban centers with a million-plus population.
  • It proposes voluntary vehicle scrapping policy and fitness tests after 20 years in case of personal vehicles and after 15 years in case of commercial vehicles.
  • Pneumococcal Vaccine or Pneumonia vaccine prevents bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae infections that can cause pneumonia, meningitis (infection of membranes covering brain and spinal cord) and septicemia (blood poisoning). 
  • Currently, Pneumococcal Vaccine is available in five states (Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Bihar) since 2016.

Topic: Indian Economy

5. Government increased FDI limit in Insurance Companies from 49% to 74%.

  • In Budget 2021-2022, government increased FDI limit in Insurance Companies from 49% to 74%.
  • Budget 2021-22 has proposal for recapitalization of PSBs with Rs. 20,000 crore in 2021-22 and setting up of Asset Reconstruction Company Limited and Asset Management Company.
  • The development of a single Securities Markets Code from consolidation of provisions of SEBI Act, 1992 and other acts is also proposed in Budget 2021-2022.
  • A system of Regulated Gold Exchanges will also be set up. Rs. 1,000 crore and Rs. 1,500 crore will be infused in Solar Energy Corporation of India and Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency, respectively.
  • It is proposed that minimum loan size eligible for debt recovery under SARFAESI Act, 2002 will be lowered from Rs. 50 lakh to Rs. 20 lakh.
  • Budget 2021-2022 also proposes change in definition of small companies under Companies Act, 2013 as given below.
    • Threshold for Paid up capital of small companies is proposed to be revised from “not exceeding Rs. 50 Lakh” to “not exceeding Rs. 2 Crore”.
    • Threshold for turnover of small companies is proposed to be revised from “not exceeding Rs. 2 Crore” to “not exceeding Rs. 20 Cr”.
  • Making NCLT framework strong, implementation of e-Courts system and launching of MCA21 Version 3.0 are the steps proposed for faster resolution of cases. MCA21 is an e-Governance initiative of Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA).

Topic: Agriculture

6. Government increases agriculture credit target to Rs. 16.5 lakh crore.

  • Government increased agriculture credit target to Rs. 16.5 lakh crore in Financial Year 2021-22.
  • In Budget 2021-2022, allocation for Rural Infrastructure Development Fund is proposed to be increased from 30,000 to 40,000 crore rupees.
  • Operation Green Scheme would be applicable to 22 perishable products. It is currently presently applicable to tomatoes, onions and potatoes.
  • 1,000 more mandis will be integrated with e-NAM. APMCs will be given access to the Agriculture Infrastructure Funds.
  • Agriculture Infrastructure and Development Cess on items such as petrol and diesel is also proposed in the Union Budget 2021-22.
  • SWAMITVA Scheme will be extended to all States/UTs. Micro Irrigation Fund will be doubled to Rs. 10,000 crore.
  • In her budget 2021-22 speech, finance minister said that 5 major fishing harbours will be developed as s hubs of economic activity. Their names are Kochi, Chennai, Visakhapatnam, Paradip, and Petuaghat.
  • Finance minister also proposed setting up of a Multipurpose Seaweed Park in Tamil Nadu to promote seaweed cultivation.

Topic: Indian Economy

7. Fiscal deficit in Budget Estimate (BE) 2021-2022 estimated to be 6.8% of GDP.

  • During budget 2021-2022 speech, Finance Minister announced that fiscal deficit in Budget Estimate (BE) 2021-2022 estimated to be 6.8% of GDP.
  • Fiscal deficit in Revised Estimate (RE) 2020-21 is expected to be at 9.5% of GDP.
  • In Budget Estimate (BE) 2021-2022, total resources being transferred to the states are 13 lakh 88 thousand 502 crore rupees.
  • Customs duty for parts used in manufacturing of mobile parts has been increased from 0 to 2.5%.
  • During budget 2021-2022, Finance Minister used Rabindranath Tagore’s words - Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark.

Budget Estimate (BE) 2021-2022 estimated to be 6.8% of GDP

(Source: News on AIR)

Topic: Indian Economy

8. Union Budget: Reinvigorating Human Capital

  • Government has announced various programme and policy for reinvigorating Human Capital in the Budget of 2021-22.
  • School Education:
    • Government has announced that more than 15000 schools will be set up as exemplar schools. These schools will include all components of the new National Education Policy.
    • The government will also set up more than 100 new Sainik Schools in collaboration with NGOs and private schools.
    • The government will establish 750 Eklavya model residential schools for students of tribal areas. About 4 crores SC student will get financial assistance from the revamped Post Matric Scholarship Scheme.
  • Higher Education:
    • A Higher Education Commission of India will be formed for standardization, regulation, accreditation, and funding of higher education.
    • A central university will be established in Leh for higher education.
    • An organised structure will be set up for the regulation of government institutions.
  • Skilling:
    • The government will promote the National Apprenticeship Training Scheme.
    • Government has collaborated with UAE and Japan for creating a pool of skilled workforce.

Topic: Government Schemes and Initiatives

9. Government will launch Mega Investment Textiles Parks (MITRA) scheme for textile Industries.

  • Union Finance Minister has announced Mega Investment Textiles Parks (MITRA) scheme in Budget of 2021-22.
  • The government will set up seven textile parks in three years under the mega investment textile parks scheme.
  • Under the scheme, textile parks will be set up to provide world-class infrastructure to textile Industries. The objective of the scheme is to make India a manufacturing and exporting hub of textiles.
  • It will help India’s Textile Industries in becoming globally competitive, generate employment, increase export and attract investment.
  • India has already established 22 textile parks under the Scheme for Integrated Textile Parks (SITP). SITP was launched in 2005 to develop infrastructure for textile industries.
  • Textile Sector in India:
    • The textile sector is one of the largest employment generators in the country.
    • India is the fifth-largest exporter of textiles and apparel in the world.
    • Textiles and apparel industry contributes 2% to India’s GDP.

Mega Investment Textiles Parks scheme for textile Industries

(Source: PIB)

Topic: Indian Economy

10. Government announced Strategic Disinvestment policy for the FY 2021-22.

  • Government has announced a policy of strategic disinvestment for the growth and better management of Central Government Public Sector Enterprises.
  • Union Finance Minister announced this policy of disinvestment in the Budget of FY 2021-22.
  • The government will disinvest its stake from non-strategic and strategic sectors companies.
  • Main features of Policy on Strategic Disinvestment:
    • It will cover CPSEs, Public Sector Banks and Public Sector Insurance Companies.
    • The government will disinvest its stake in BPCL, Air India, Shipping Corporation of India, Container Corporation of India, IDBI Bank, BEML, Pawan Hans, Neelachal Ispat Nigam Limited in FY 2021-22.
    • The government will also privatize two other Public Sector Banks and one General Insurance company.
    • The IPO of LIC will be released in 2021-22.
    • The Union Government will also incentivise States for disinvestment of their Public Sector Companies through incentive package of Central Funds.
    • A Special Purpose Vehicle will be established for the monetization of idle land.
    • A revised mechanism will be set up for the closing of sick or loss-making CPSEs.
  • Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM): It is responsible for the monetization of non-core assets of Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs) under strategic disinvestment or closure and enemy property of the value of ₹100 crore and above.

Strategic Disinvestment policy for the FY 2021-22

(Source: PIB)

Topic: Indian Economy

11. Tax Proposals announced under the Union Budget of 2021-22.

  • The Finance Minister has announced direct and indirect tax proposals for the FY 2021-22 in her Budget speech.
  • Key points about Direct tax proposal are:
    • The government exempted 75 years or above senior citizens from filing income tax returns if their only source of income are pension and interest.
    • The dividend payment to REIT/InvIT will be exempted from TDS.
    • The tax holiday period for startups has been extended by one more year till 31 March 2022.
    • A Dispute Resolution Committee will be set up to resolve the tax dispute upto Rs. 10 lakh.
    • National Faceless Income Tax Appellate Tribunal Centre will be established to increase transparency in disposal of tax related appeals.
    • The government will promote zero-coupon bonds to raise funds for infrastructure projects.
    • The Budget proposes tax incentives to promote the International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) in GIFT City.
    • The return filers in 2020 are almost 6.48 crores.
    • The Budget proposes a new tax exemption for promoting affordable rental housing projects. The time period for claim of the additional deduction for the purchase of an affordable house has been extended till 31st March 2022.
  • Key points about Indirect tax proposal are:
    • Customs Duty rates has been revised for some items like Gold, Silver, Solar inverters, etc. for promoting domestic manufacturing.
    • Agriculture Infrastructure and Development Cess (AIDC) has been imposed on petrol and diesel at Rs2.5 and Rs.4 per litre respectively.
    • Anti-Dumping Duty (ADD) and Counter-Veiling Duty (CVD) revoked on certain steel products.
    • The Budget proposes an increase of customs duty on cotton to 10% and raw silk and silk yarn to 15%.
    • The government will take various steps for the enhancement of capacity of GSTN system.
    • ‘Turant Customs’ programme has played a crucial role in providing a ‘Faceless, Contactless and Paperless’ Customs administration
  • The Borrowing is the biggest source of revenue for the government, it is followed by GST. Income tax is the biggest source of tax revenue for the Government.
  • The Government maximum expenditure goes to Interest payments, it is followed by state share of Tax and Duties. 

Direct tax proposal

(Source: Finance Ministry)

Indirect tax proposal

(Source: Finance Ministry)


Topic: National News

12. Achievements of the Government in the pandemic year.

  • Achievements of the Government in COVID-19 pandemic year:
    • Government has provided free food grain to 80 crore people and cooking gas for 8 crore families, under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana. Direct cash has been transferred to farmers, women, elderly, and poor people.
    • The government has launched 23 lakh crore AatmaNirbhar Bharat package.
    • India has the lowest death rate per million cases across the world from COVID-19.
    • Government has taken various steps for protecting the citizens from COVID-19 and also actively worked for the development of indigenous COVID vaccine.
    • Government has done some structural reform such as One Nation One Ration Card, Privatisation of Public Sector Undertakings, Production Linked Incentive Schemes, etc.
  • 2021 Year of milestones for Indian history
    • It will be the 75th year of India’s independence and 50th year of the 1971 India-Pakistan War.
    • The 8th Census of Independent India will begin in February 2021.
    • India will host the 13th BRICS Summit in 2021.
    • Chandrayaan-3 will be launched in 2021.
    • Kumbh Mela will be held in Haridwar in 2021.





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