Union Minister of Finance Current Affairs - 2019

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100 Most Influential Women’ in UK Power List

Nirmala Sitharaman, Union Minister of Finance and Minister of Corporate Affairs was named in 100 Most Influential in UK-India Relations: Celebrating Women list. Besides Sitharaman, list included Penny Mordaunt, Britain’s Secretary of State for Defence and Ruchi Ghanashyam, Indian High Commissioner to the UK.

About The List

The ‘100 Most Influential in UK-India Relations: Celebrating Women’ list was launched by Sajid Javid, UK Home Secretary to mark India Day in Houses of Parliament in London. This is the 3rd year of list.

The launch of list also marked commencing of UK-India Week in Britain. The course of week will include a series of sessions on trade and investment and closer cooperation between two nations.

The women mentioned in list holds influencing positions in India and UK across 11 broad sectors such as politics, technology and sustainability.

Nirmala Sitharaman: The list called her as one of India’s most powerful women and credited her for playing a pivotal role in bilateral relationship. Having studied at London School of Economics (LSE) and worked in UK she is familiar with UK more so than probably all her other colleagues.

Oher Prominent Names in List: Priti Patel and Baroness Sandy Verma (Indian-origin parliamentarians in the UK), Gurinder Chadha (filmmaker), Zia Mody and Pallavi S Shroff (Indian law firm chiefs), Suneeta Reddy (Apollo Hospitals’ managing director) and Debjani Ghosh (Nasscom President).

Significance:

The list is recognition of front and centre role played by women in bilateral relationship. It acknowledges that from business to politics, and art and literacy, women are continuing to make their way in bringing together this bold startegic partnership via collaboration and relationships.

It highlights huge potential for bilateral future (of UK and India) as they continue to forge on together as two great countries.

Interim Budget 2019: What’s there for Agriculture

The Union Minister of Finance Piyush Goyal presented the interim budget. The various provisions in the budget related to the Agricultural sector are listed below:

  • The budget announced a farm support scheme for farmers owning up to 2 hectares of lands.
  • These farmers will get Rs 6,000 per year in three equal instalments effective from December 1, 2018.
  • The Finance Minister has set aside Rs 75,000 crore for the scheme.
  • The farm support scheme is expected to benefit 12 crore small and marginal farmers.
  • The allocation for the Rashtriya Gokul Mission has been increased to Rs 750 crore for increasing the production and productivity of cows.
  • 2% interest subvention for farmers pursuing animal husbandry and fisheries through Kisaan credit cards.
  • A separate Department for fisheries would be created.
  • Farmers adversely affected by natural calamities would get 2% interest subvention and additional 3% interest subvention upon timely repayment.
  • Budget announced setting up of Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog to upscale sustainable genetic upgradation of cow resources and to enhance production and productivity of cows.
  • The Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog would also be responsible for effective implementation of laws and welfare schemes for cows.

The budget has made some big announcements but the critics argue that the long-term plans are mere slogans with no clear road map.