Thursday, April 6, 2017

Payment of wages(Amendment) Act 2017

Industrial units and other establishments have to pay wages either through cheques or by electronically transferring into workers' bank accounts, as per a new law passed by  President Pranab Mukherjee. It will allow industries to pay wages to workers earning up to Rs. 18,000 per month, without taking their explicit consent as required under present Act. The new law has amended the Payment of Wages Act, 1936, which mandated payment of all wages either in coin or currency notes, or both. Before introduction of a bill to amend the 1936 Act on February 3, an Ordinance was promulgated by the President on December 28, 2016. The Bill was passed in Lok Sabha on February 7 and in Rajya Sabha on February 8.

Jnanpith 2016

Eminent modern Bengali poet Shankha Ghosh was chosen for the prestigious Jnanpith Award for the year 2016. He is the 52nd recipient of Jnanpith Award. He is sixth Bengali litterateur to bag this prestigious literary award after Tarasankar Bandyopadhyay (1966), Bishnu Dey (1971), Ashapoorna Devi (1976), Subhash Mukhopadhyay (1991) and Mahasweta Devi (1966).

About Jnanpith Award:
 Jnanpith Award is India’s highest literary honour. Its name has been taken from Sanskrit words Jnana and Pitha which means knowledge-seat.
It was instituted in 1961 by Bharatiya Jnanpith trust founded by the Sahu Shanti Prasad Jain family that owns the Times of India newspaper group.
The award carries cash prize of 11 lakh rupees, a citation plaque and a bronze replica of Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of knowledge and wisdom

Swachh Swasth Sarvatra

To strengthen health centres in open defecation-free (ODF) blocks Union Govenment has launched Swachh Swasth Sarvatra. The objective of this initiative is to strengthen community health centres in 708 ODF blocks across the country to enable them to achieve higher levels of cleanliness and hygiene. It is a part of the Union Government’s flagship Swachh Bharat Mission and is focused on the twin objectives of constructing toilets and enabling behavioral change. It is joint initiative of Ministry of Health and Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation to achieve better health outcomes through improved sanitation and increase awareness on healthy lifestyles. Apart from launching Swachh Swasth Sarvatra initative, J P Nadda,Union Health Minister and Prakash Javadekar,Union Minister of Human Resource Development also releasd the Operational Guidelines of Swachh Swasth Sarvatra along with the Swasth Bacche Swasth Bharat Booklet. The Booklet is prepared by Central Health Education Bureau(CHEB). It aims at educating the children and youth about healthy living habits and activities.

RBI Monetary policy

Urjit Patel- RBI Governor

The Reserve Bank of India today kept the repo rate(rate at which RBI loans short term funds to banks) unchanged at 6.25 percent and hiked the reverse repo rate(rate at which RBI borrows from banks) by 25 basis points to 6 percent. Inflation seen averaging 4.5 percent in the first half of this year and 5 percent in the second half. This is above the 4 percent which the RBI is targeting. Economy estimated to grow 7.4 percent this year, versus an estimated 6.7 percent last year. The RBI will shortly come out with a comprehensive plan to fix the bad loan problem, and also revive credit growth. At higher reverse repo, the central bank would suck cash from the system to control demand and cool prices. It will also encourage banks to park excess funds(they got from the deposit of outlawed old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes between November 8 and December 30, 2016.) with the RBI that will fetch higher returns.

Current rates:

Policy rates

Repo rate                                         6.25%
Reverse repo rate                             6.00%
Marginal Standing Facility(MSF)   6.50%
Bank Rate                                        6.50%

Reserve ratios

Cash Reserve Ratio(CRR)                    4.00%
Statutory Liquidity  ratio(SLR)           20.50%

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