Finance Ministry Current Affairs - 2020

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Finance Minister announces 102 lakh crore rupees project

On December 31, 2019, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman announced 102 lakh crore worth projects to be implemented in next 5 years. During the announcement, she also released the report of Task Force on National Infrastructure Pipeline for 2019-2025.

Highlights

The infrastructure projects are to be introduced in railways, power, urban, irrigation, health and education. These projects will help India achieve its goal of 5 trillion-dollar economy by 2025. Currently, the GDP of India is 2.72 trillion USD and is growing at the rate of 6.81%

Currently 25 lakh crore rupees energy projects have been lined up. In railway sector, 14 lakh crore rupees of projects are currently being implemented and in health sector 20 lakh crore rupees projects have been lined up. Apart from this, 3 lakh crore rupees projects will be added to pipeline sector.

Significance

Off late, several international financial organizations have been projecting a decline in the growth rate of India. The IMF projected India’s growth rate at 6.1% in 2019 and the world bank projected India’s growth rate at 6%. These projected growth rates were lower than the previous growth rates of the country. Therefore, these new economical measures are important to boost the economy and help India achieve its target.

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Govt. makes Aadhaar mandatory for PMVKY subscribers

Centre government has made Aadhaar (the unique 12-digit biometric identity number) mandatory for subscribers of Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana (PMVVY) which is a pension scheme for senior citizens. Finance Ministry notified that an individual eligible for receiving benefit under PMVVY scheme shall now be required to furnish proof of possession of Aadhaar number or else undergo Aadhaar authentication.

Key Highlights

Union Ministry of Finance, has issued the notification under Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016. It further reads that any individual desirous of availing benefit under PMVVY scheme who does not possess Aadhaar number or has not yet been enrolled for Aadhaar, shall be required to apply for Aadhaar enrolment before registering for scheme.

In cases where scheme beneficiaries Aadhaar authentication fails due to poor biometrics- the Department of Financial Services (under Finance Ministry) through its implementing agency will make provisions to help beneficiaries get Aadhaar number.

In cases where biometric or Aadhaar OTP (one-time password) authentication is not possible, benefit under PMVVY scheme may be given on basis of physical Aadhaar letter whose authenticity may be verified through unique quick response (QR) code printed on Aadhaar letter.

About Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana (PMVVY)

It is a pension scheme for senior citizens aged 60 or above. The scheme envisages an assured rate of return of 8% annually for 10 years. It is s being implemented through Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC). PMVVY was announced in Union Budgets of 2017-18 and 2018-19, and in Budget 2018-19, the maximum limit under PMVVY was doubled to Rs.15 lakh per senior citizen. PMVVY is available for subscription till March 2020.

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