Gist of The Hindu: AUGUST 2020

Gist of The Hindu: AUGUST 2020

PM addresses nation; extends PMGKY for providing free food grains till November

  • Prime Minister NarendraModi has announced free food grains to 80 crore people across the country for five more months. The Prime Minister Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana has been extended till the end of November this year.
  • Under the scheme announced in the wake of COVID- 19 pandemic, 5 kg free wheat or rice along with 1 kg whole chana will be provided to each member of a family per month. Its extension will cost over 90 thousand crore rupees.
  • He also said, regulations need to be followed with the same seriousness as during Lockdown,especially in the Containment Zones. The Prime Minister added that people must maintain discipline and those not following the rules, need to be stopped and made aware. He warned that nobody is above the rule. 
  • Mr.Modi also hailed farmers and honest tax payers for their contribution in making the welfare scheme successful. The Prime Minister said that in the coming times, the government will continue to take further steps to empower the poor and the needy.
  • Economic activities will also be enhanced, with due precautions in place. He reiterated the pledge to work towards Atmanirbhar Bharat and to be vocal for local, while also asking people to be careful, use mask and face cover and continue following the mantra of maintaining do gazdoori.
  • Mr.Modi said, the country is entering in Unlock 2 and the season of cough, fever and cold is also about to start and in such a situation the countrymen should take care of themselves. 

UN report finds 46million girls missing in India

  • One in three girls missing globally due to sex selection, both pre- and post-natal, is from India — 46 million out of the total 142 million, according to the UNFPA’s State of the World Population 2020 report released on Tuesday.
  • The figure shows that the number of missing women has more than doubled over the past 50 years, who were at 61 million in 1970.
  • The report examines the issue of missing women by studying sex ratio imbalances at birth as a result of gender-biased sex selection as well as excess female mortality due to deliberate neglect of girls because of a culture of son preference. Excess female mortality is the difference between observed and expected mortality of the girl child or avoidable death of girls during childhood.
  • According to estimates averaged over a five year period (2013-17), annually, there were 1.2 million missing female births, at a global level. India had about 4,60,000 girls ‘missing’ at birth each year.
  • These skewed numbers translate into long-term shifts in the proportions of women and men in the population of some countries, the report Points out.
  • In many countries, this results in a “marriage squeeze” as prospective grooms far outnumber prospective brides, which further results in human trafficking for marriage as well as child marriages.

RBI launches inflation expectation survey

  • The Reserve Bank of India has launched the inflation expectations survey of households and responses of the participants will be gathered over telephone in view of the coronavirus pandemic. The RBI has been regularly conducting the survey to elicit subjective views of the households on price movement across various cities of the country. The results of the survey are used as inputs for monetary policy. 
  • The July 2020 round of the Inflation Expectations Survey of Households has been launched. As per RBI release, Hansa Research Group, Mumbai has been engaged to conduct the survey of this round on behalf of the RBI over telephone instead of the regular personal interview mode in view of the pandemic. 
  • The survey aims at capturing subjective assessments on price movements and inflation,of approximately 6,000 households, based on their individual consumption baskets, across 18 cities.
  • The cities that would be covered are Mumbai,Nagpur, Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Bhopal,Bhubaneswar, Chandigarh, Chennai, Delhi,Guwahati, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Kolkata, Lucknow,Patna, Raipur, Ranchi and Thiruvananthapuram.
  • The survey would seek qualitative as well as quantitative responses from households on price changes, general prices as well as prices of specific product groups, for the three months ahead as well as in the one year ahead period. 

Current account sees meagre surplus as trade deficit shrinks

  • India recorded a current account surplus of $0.6 billion, or 0.1% of GDP, for the January-March quarter, against a deficit of $4.6 billion, or 0.7% of GDP in the year-ago period, the Reserve Bank said on Tuesday.
  • For the fiscal year 2019-20, the current account deficit narrowed to 0.9% of the GDP, compared with 2.1% in FY 2018-19, the central bank said.Lower trade deficit was one of the prime reasons for the improvement in the current account balances both for the March quarter as well as for the whole fiscal year. 
  • The current account balances, which represent the net of the country’s export and imports of goods and services and also payments made to foreign investors or inflows from them, are considered as an important indicator of a country’s external sector. 
  • The Reserve Bank said the surplus in the current account in the March quarter was primarily on account of a lower trade deficit at $35 billion  and a sharp rise in net invisible receipts at $35.6 billion as compared with the corresponding period of last year.
  • Private transfer receipts, mainly representing remittances by Indians employed overseas, increased 14.8% to $20.6 billion for the reporting quarter, the RBI said. 
  • The net outgo from the primary income account, which primarily reflects the net overseas investment income payments, decreased to $4.8 billion from $6.9 billion a year ago, the RBI said.


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Courtesy: The Hindu