National Current Affairs

Parliament passes IIIT (Amendment) Bill, 2017

Parliament has passed the Indian Institutes of Information Technology (Amendment) Bill, 2017 after the Rajya Sabha approved it. The Lok Sabha has already passed it. The Bill amends the IIIT Act, 2014.

The IIIT Act, 2014 declares certain Institutes of Technology as institutions of national importance. It aims to develop new knowledge in information technology and provide manpower of global standards for the information technology industry.

 Key Features of the Bill

Appointment of Director: The Bill modifies the composition of the search-cum-selection committee which recommends names to the central government for the appointment of the Director of an IIIT. Further, it replaces the Director of an IIIT with the Director of an Indian Institute of Technology.

Appointment of Assistant Professor and other above posts:  The Bill permits the Board of Governor of Institutes to appoint Assistant Professors and all the posts above that level as well.

Incorporation of an institute:  It declares the Indian Institute of Technology, Design and Manufacturing (ITDM), Kurnool in Andhra Pradesh as an institution of national importance. Further it adds ITDM, Kurnool to the Schedule of the parent Act which consists of other institutions of national importance.

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Lok Sabha passes Banking Regulation (Amendment) Bill, 2017

The Lok Sabha has passed the Banking Regulation (Amendment) Bill, 2017 by voice vote. It will replace the Banking Regulation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2017.

The bill seeks to amend the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 to insert provisions for handling cases related to stressed assets or non-performing assets (NPAs) of banks. Stressed assets (NPAs) are loans defaulted by borrower in repayment or the loan which has been restructured by changing the repayment schedule.

Key Features of the Bill

Initiating insolvency proceedings: It will enable the Central government to authorize the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to direct banking companies to resolve specific stressed assets by initiating insolvency resolution process. These proceedings will be under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016.

Issuing directions on stressed assets:  It empowers RBI to issue directions to banks for resolution of stressed assets from time to time.

Committee to advise banks: It enables RBI to specify committees or authorities to advise banks on resolution of stressed assets.  RBI will appoint or approve members on such committees.

Applicability to State Bank of India (SBI): It inserts provision to make above provisions applicable to the SBI and its subsidiaries and also Regional Rural Banks (RRBs).

Need for Amendment

Non-performing assets (NPAs) or bad loans of banks have risen to over Rs. 9 lakh crore resulting in choking the banking system. So it had become necessary for the RBI to intervene in order to take urgent measures for their speedy resolution.

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