(Current Affairs) Economy & Energy | October + November: 2014


Tata Value ties up with Snapdeal

  • Online marketplace Snapdeal and Tata Value Homes, a subsidiary of Tata Housing with focus on affordable housing , announced partnership to enable users to buy houses online.
  • As part of the partnership, about 1,000 homes across projects in cities such as Mumbai, Pune, Ahmedabad, Bangalore and Chennai will be put up for sale on Snapdeal. These houses are priced between Rs.18 lakh and Rs.70 lakh and range from 1 BHK to 3 BHK.

  • Tata Value Homes will continue to sell through its own portal as well.

  • Upon possession of the house, customers buying the house through Snapdeal will get Rs.10,000 a month for a year as an assured rent (whether they stay on premise or lease it out) as part of the deal.

Centre to unveil home loan Scheme for Transgenders

  • The Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation ECONOMY (HUPA) has proposed rolling out a loan assistance scheme that will for the first time help transgenders and economically weaker sections to secure home loans in urban areas.

  • The Ministry has tweaked the existing Rajiv RinnYojna (RRY), which was launched as an instrument to aid the EWS (economically weaker sections) and LIG (lower income group) segments in urban areas, through enhanced credit flow and replaced it with a new scheme that will make it easier for the economically weaker sections and minority groups to own homes.

  • The RRY launched by the UPA government with much fanfare failed to take off and funds earmarked for it lapsed.

  • The Ministry has now not only given it a new name — HOMES (Home Owners Mortgage Equity Subvention Scheme) but has also made it more attractive by enhancing the loan amount and increasing the interest subsidy from 5 per cent to 5.5 per cent on loans granted to construct houses or extend the existing ones.

Insurance Bill may be cleared by year-end

  • Union Finance Minister ArunJaitley has expressed hope that Parliament will pass the Insurance Bill for raising the foreign direct investment (FDI) limit to 49 per cent by the end of this year, the first major economic reform proposed by the NarendraModi Government.

  • The UPA Government had originally proposed raising the FDI cap back in 2008 when it introduced the Insurance Laws (Amendment) Bill. However, opposition from political parties, including the BJP, did not allow the Bill to be taken up in the RajyaSabha.

  • The Modi Government introduced a fresh Insurance Laws (Amendment) Bill in Parliament earlier this month. It proposes a rider that management control rests in the hands of an Indian promoter alongside the eased FDI cap.

  • After the introduction of the Bill, the government moved 97 amendments because of which it could not be passed.

Monthly cap on LPG cylinders Goes

  • The Union Cabinet lifted the restriction of one LPG cylinder per month to a domestic consumer. While households will still get only 12 cylinders in a year at subsidised rates.
  • The monthly cap has been lifted in view of complaints from consumers regarding the limited access to LPG imposed by the earlier restriction.
  • Now consumers can avail themselves of their quota of 12 cylinders at any time of the year.

Smart cards to buy Milk

  • Angry customers haggling with milk-booth operators for change is a common sight.
  • Keeping this in mind and to promote cashless transactions, Delhi-NCR’s largest milk supplier, Mother Dairy, has teamed up with the State Bank of India to make everyone’s life easier with the help of a smart card.

Higher minimum PF pension from Sept. 1

  • The minimum monthly pension of Rs. 1,000 and a higher wage ceiling of Rs. 15,000 for social security schemes run by the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation will be implemented from September 1. It will benefit 28 lakh pensioners.

  • The government has raised the maximum sum assured under the Employees’ Deposit Linked Insurance Scheme to Rs. 3 lakh.

  • This means in case an EPFO subscriber dies, his family will be entitled to sum assured of Rs 3.6 lakh instead of existing Rs 1.56 lakh.

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