Centre plans for new legislation for social impact companies
The government is considering a new law for setting up
social impact companies, where profits can be distributed among the
shareholders.An official said having such companies would help in attracting
private capital towards developmental activities in the country.
The corporate affairs ministry is working on a new concept for
having social impact companies and the plan is to have a separate legislation in
this regard, the official told.
Social impact or community interest companies are there in many
Western jurisdictions, including the UK.The larger idea is to attract private
capital into companies that do social good and work towards achieving
sustainable development goals, the official said.
The work on the concept of social impact companies is at a very
early stage, the official said, adding that it is likely to take a few years to
have the required legislative framework.
Unlike Section 8 companies, these new class of companies would
be allowed to pay dividends to the shareholders, which means they can share
their profits within permissible limits. They would also have more freedom in
carrying out their business activities, the official added.
Currently, there are more than 11 lakh registered companies that
are active in the country. Active companies are those which are compliant with
various requirements, including timely filing of financial statements, under the
Government’s flagship programme of illuminating nation
completes five years
UJALA and Street Lighting National Programme (SLNP) of the
central government completed five successful years of illuminating the
country today. Over 36.13 crore LED bulbs have been distributed across the
country through the UJALA initiative. This has resulted in estimated energy
savings of 46.92 billion kilowatt-hour per year.
UnnatJyoti by Affordable LEDs for All (UJALA) project brought
the market transformation in the energy efficiency sector. Prices of LED bulbs
being distributed under UJALA programme have fallen to one-tenth of their rates,
from 310 rupees in 2015 to 38 rupees in 2018.
The switch from inefficient incandescent bulbs to LEDs is
helping families reduce their electricity bills while also enabling them to
access better brightness in homes.
More than 1.03 crore smart LED streetlights have been installed
till date under the Street Lighting National Programme. This has enabled an
estimated energy savings of 6.97 billion kilowatt-hour per year.
LED streetlights have been installed in various states across
the country, helping in generating approximately 13,000 jobs to support Make in
DBS report finds Indian economy benefitted from favourable
The Indian economy benefited from "favourable external
environment" in 2019, following which portfolio inflows into equity and debt
touched a multi-year high, and if this momentum is sustained it will bode
well for the country's external balance, a report said.
According to Singapore's DBS Banking Group, notwithstanding a
challenging trade outlook, conducive global drivers, such as flush of liquidity
owing to low interest rates and stable oil prices, provided a favourable
external environment for the Indian economy in 2019.
However, crude oil prices are currently hovering around USD 68
per barrel after US President Donald Trump ordered the killing of Iran
Revolutionary Guards commander QasemSoleimani.
The US had called the strikes in response to a rocket attack
days earlier that had killed an American contractor working in Iraq.
As per the DBS report, India attracted USD 19 billion worth net
portfolio inflows in CY2019, strongest since 2017. Moreover, foreign flows into
equities was the highest in nearly six years.
The report further noted that near-term progress on the US-China
trade war rests on the success of the phase one agreement (likely to be signed
US elections and Eurozone politics and Brexit developments are
other watch factors, the report titled "India: Banking on conducive global
HRD ministry to transform education sector soon
Human Resource Development Ministry took a leap forward in
transforming the education sector with the motto of Education for All and
Quality Education. In the year 2019, Dr K Kasturirangan Committee submitted
the Draft National Education Policy to the ministry.
The Government had initiated the process of formulating a New
Education Policy to meet the changing dynamics of the requirements of the
population with regard to quality education, innovation and research.
The Ministry has launched the PradhanMantri Innovative Learning
Program (DHRUV) to identify and encourage talented children to enrich their
skills and knowledge.
AIR Correspondent reports that a National Mission to improve
learning outcomes at the elementary level through an Integrated Teacher Training
Programme, National Initiative for School Heads and Teachers Holistic
Advancement -NISHTHA was launched in August last year. This program is aimed at
building the capacities of around 42 lakh teachers and Heads of Schools.
Under SamagraShiksha, a total of 5930 Kasturba Gandhi
BalikaVidyalayas have been sanctioned in the country out of which 4881 such
schools are operational.
In the year 2019-20. An outlay of over Rs 800 crore has been
approved under sports grant for over 10 lakh government schools of different
categories. The fresh guidelines for sports and physical education are being
India asks Pakistan to condemn violence against minorities
India has strongly condemned the targeted killing of a
minority Sikh community member at Peshawar in Pakistan. This incident
follows the recent vandalism and desecration of the holy GurdwaraNankana
Sahib and the unresolved case of abduction, forced conversion and marriage
of a Sikh girl.
India has called upon the Pakistan government to stop
prevaricating and to take immediate action to apprehend and give exemplary
punishment to the perpetrators of these heinous acts.
The External Affairs Ministry said, the Pakistan Government
should act in defense of their own minorities instead of preaching sermons about
this to other countries.
Iran declares that it will no longer abide by 2015 nuclear deal
Iran has declared that it will no longer abide by any of the
restrictions imposed by the 2015 nuclear deal. Tehran said, it will no
longer observe limitations on its capacity for enrichment, the level of
enrichment, the stock of enriched material, or research and development.
Under the 2015 accord, Iran agreed to limit its sensitive
nuclear activities and allow in international inspectors in return for the
lifting of crippling economic sanctions.
The announcement followed a meeting of the Iranian cabinet in
Tehran. Tensions have been high over the killing of Iranian General
QasemSoleimani by the US in Baghdad. Hundreds of thousands turned out in Iran
yesterday to give Soleimani a hero's welcome ahead of his funeral tomorrow.
EU foreign policy chief JosepBorrell has invited Iran's Foreign
Minister, Mohammad JavadZarif, to visit Brussels to discuss both the nuclear
deal and how to defuse the crisis over the Soleimani assassination.
Earlier, Iraqi Parliament passed a non-binding resolution
calling for foreign troops to leave the country after the general's killing in a
drone strike at Baghdad airport on Friday.
::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::
ISRO to setup optical telescope under project NETRA
The Indian Space Research Organization signed a pact with
Indian Institute of Astrophysics to establish an optical telescope under
The organisation also tied up with NIT-Karnataka to set up a
regional academic centre for space to promote research and development.
Project NETRA was launched by ISRO in September 2019. Under the
Project, ISRO plans to set up observational facilities that will help in making
earlywarnings to satellites about debris and hazards in their orbit.
It includes radars, telescopes, control centres and data
processing units. The aim isto make the facilities powerful enough to track even
the smallest particle of 10 cm diameter up to a range of 3,400 km.
The project will help India detect threats to Indian satellites
from debris. Currently, India operates 15 communication satellites, 13 remote
sensingsatellites and eight navigation satellites.
Space debris is the biggest problem of the satellites sector.
There are more than 7,500 tonnes of space debris that are circling the earth at
present.These junks include screws of old rocket bodies to defunct space crafts
that pose collision hazard to satellites.
Apart from ISRO, DRDO (Defence Research Development Organisation)
operates NETRA (Network Traffic Analysis). It is a software network used to
analyseinternet traffic. It is used by Research and Analysis Wing (RAW),
Intelligence Bureau (IB) and other intelligence agencies of Government of India.
Sonam Malik seals place in Indian team for Asian championship
In Wrestling, two-time World Cadet champion Sonam Malik
stunned Rio Olympic bronze medalistSakshi Malik in 62kg while another
promising junior Anshu Malik knocked out World Championship
medalistPoojaDhanda in 57 kg to seal their places in the Indian team for the
Asian Championship in Lucknow today.
Pitted against heavyweights in their respective first round,
both Sonam and Anshu cared little for reputations, fighting fearlessly.
VineshPhogat (53kg) and DivyaKakran (68kg) easily won their
bouts. Nirmala Devi (50kg) and KiranGodara (76kg) were other wrestlers to win