Current Affairs Today - Current Affairs 2015

Madhya Pradesh gets 10th national award for excellent work in MGNREGA

Madhya Pradesh has been awarded the 10th national award for excellent work in Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA).

Union Rural Development Minister Virendra Singh presented the award to state’s Panchayats and Rural Development Minister Gopal Bhargava at the MGNREGA summit held on the occasion of MNREGA Divas (observed on 2 February) in New Delhi.

Madhya Pradesh was chosen for this award for convergence of MGNREGA scheme and other schemes, which led to permanent construction of assets and providing opportunities for earning permanent income.

MNREGA Implementation in Madhya Pradesh

  • In Madhya Pradesh, there are 1 crore 2 lakh MGNREGA job-card holder families.
  • State also has topped in construction of permanent assets through MGNREGA convergence in the country.  It accounts for 74 percent construction of permanent assets.
  • State also has implemented Electronic Fund Management System, in order to ensure transparency in accountancy and immediate payment of wages to labourers.

About Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act

  • MGNREGA is social security measure that aims to guarantee the right to work and create durable assets (such as roads, canals, ponds, wells).
  • Objective: To ensure livelihood security in rural areas by providing at least 100 days of wage employment in a financial year to every household whose adult members volunteer to do unskilled manual work.
  • Initially, it was started in 200 districts on 2 February 2006, since then it has covered all the districts of India from April 2008.

IRCTC launches cash on delivery system to book train tickets on pilot basis

Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has launched cash on delivery (CoD) system for rail ticketing.

With this initiative, passengers can now book a rail ticket online and get it delivered at home where the payment can be made.

IRCTC has launched this CoD scheme on pilot basis. Initially, this service will be available in more than 200 cities.

Passengers can book a rail ticket 5 days prior to commencement of journey. But CoD scheme will charge additional Rs 40 for the delivery of each Sleeper Class ticket, Rs 60 for an AC class ticket.

In this case, passengers can book tickets on IRCTC mobile application or on web-portal BookMyTrain.com. IRCTC has authorized Anduril Technologies through their web-portal (BookMyTrain.com) to provide CoD services.

RBI keeps key rates unchanged but changes statutory liquidity ratio

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has announced sixth Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Statement.

In its bi-monthly monetary policy statement, RBI has not changed its main lending rate i.e.Repo Rate and cash reserve ratio (CRR). But changed statutory liquidity ratio (SLR) of scheduled commercial banks.

On the basis of an assessment of the current and evolving macroeconomic situation, RBI has been decided to:

  • Repo rate- kept the policy repo rate under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) unchanged at 7.75 per cent.
  • Cash reserve ratio (CRR) - kept the cash reserve ratio (CRR) of scheduled banks unchanged at 4.0 per cent of net demand and time liabilities (NDTL).
  • Statutory liquidity ratio (SLR) - reduced the SLR of scheduled commercial banks by 50 basis points from 22.0 per cent to 21.5 per cent of their NDTL.
  • Reverse repo rate under the LAF – remains unchanged at 6.75 per cent.
  • Marginal standing facility (MSF) rate- remains unchanged at 8.75 per cent.
  • Bank Rate – remains unchanged at 8.75 per cent.

Earlier on 15 January 2015, RBI had changed repo rate by 25 basis points from 8.0 percent to 7.75 percent.

Statutory Liquidity Ratio: SLR refers to the proportion of its total NDTL that the bank has to maintain in form of liquid assets. These liquid assets can either be cash or gold or unencumbered government securities. This directly affects the proportion of funds that the bank can lend.

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