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Current Affairs 2nd April 2020

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1. Finance Minister attends the 2nd Extraordinary G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Virtual Meeting
  • FM Nirmala Sitharaman participated in the 2nd Extraordinary G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors (FMCBG) meeting.
  • The meeting will be under the Saudi Arabian Presidency
  • To discuss the impact of COVID-19 on the global economy and coordinate efforts to fight it.
  • India made an offer of $10 million after SAARC Countries meet.
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2. POWERGRID commits Rs.200 Crore to PM CARES Fund
  • Maharatna CPSE under Ministry of Power, GoI and Central Transmission Utility (CTU) has decided to contribute Rs.130 Crore to PM-CARES.
  • CPSE = Central Public Sector Enterprises 
  • PM-CARES = Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations.
  • Fund to support India’s fight against COVID-19.
  • It also distributed food packets in slum areas to help the needy
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3. Millions of people could be driven into poverty in East Asia and Pacific: World Bank
  • For economic slowdown due to the pandemic.
  • Will increase poverty in China and other East Asian-Pacific countries.
  • The World Bank report projected that growth in the region would slow to 2.1% from 5.8%.
  • IMF had said that the global economy has entered a recession.
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4. Public sector banks announce deferment of EMI payments on loans
  • Banks like SBI, Punjab and Sind Bank, Canara Bank, BoB have announced the offer of the moratorium to customers.
  • CNB is providing collateral & margin free loan up to ₹20L to SHG
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5. IIT Kanpur to develop prototype of portable ventilator to support medical infrastructure
  • Ventilators only provide support and keep the lung inflated.
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6. New direct tax regime kicks in from April 1, 2020
  • NRIs who have more than ₹15 lakh income from Indian sources will be deemed as Indian residents.
  • For the purpose of taxation if they had spent 120 days in India in the previous year.
  • Earlier, the number of days was 182.
  • Taxation of dividend in the hands of shareholders was introduced
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7. Panel led by NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant starts working on response strategy
  • The Empowered Committee held a meeting on March 30 and saw attendees from the private sector and industry.
  • Representatives from ASSOCHAM, NASSCOM, FICCI & CII were present
  • CII = Confederation of Indian Industry
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8. Govt slashes interest on PPF, NSC and other small savings schemes
  • The Centre has slashed interest rates on small savings schemes by 70 to 140 bps for FY21.
  • Interest rates on PPF have been brought down to 7.1% and for Kisan Vikas Patra to 6.9%.
  • The interest rate on the girl child-focussed Sukanya Samriddhi scheme is 7.6%
  • Initial rate on small savings schemes are revised on quarterly basis
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9. MakeMyTrip launches ‘Stays for Saviours’ initiative to support healthcare providers
  • To support temporary accommodation needs of the medical frontline at special rates.
  • It will enable medical practitioners to book from over 900 hotel properties across 200 cities.
  • Make My Trip CEO : Deep Kalra
  • Headquarters : Gurugram, Haryana.
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10. Affordable housing firm Aavas gets $60m from ADB
  • ADB has signed an agreement to lend up to $60 million to Aavas Financiers Ltd.
  • To improve access to housing finance for lower-income borrowers, particularly women.
  • Aavas is one of the largest housing finance companies in India’s affordable housing segment.
  • Aavas CEO : Sushil Kumar Agarwal
  • Headquarters : Jaipur, Rajasthan
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11. ‘Stranded in India’: New govt portal to help foreign tourists
  • Union Tourism ministry launched a web portal.
  • Portal is ‘stransdedinindia.com’
  • To reach out to foreign nationals stranded in India owing to the lockdown.
  • It consists of information around Covid-19 helpline numbers that foreign tourists can reach out for help.
  • Minister of Tourism : Prahlad Singh Patel
  • Constituency : Damoh, MP

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