1. Financial Inclusion Initiatives
    1. Deepak Mohanty Committee on Financial inclusion
    2. Stand Up India Scheme
    3. MUDRA goes under SIDBI
    4. UDAY scheme for Discoms
  2. Ministry: Petroleum
  3. Ministry: agro
  4. Ministry: Textile-  ATUFS and DBT
  5. Ministry: Textile- 0% Effluent norms
  6. GS3: Economy: Infra, Investment
  7. Misc. Developments

Financial Inclusion Initiatives

Here are some notable developments in Indian economy, during January 2015, Week1.

Deepak Mohanty Committee

RBI Deepak Mohanty Committee on financial inclusion

  • Deepak Mohanty is the executive director, RBI
  • Committee’s Purpose: Medium term path to financial inclusion (July to December 2015)
Recommendations of Mohanty Committee
  • Make crop insurance mandatory for all agriculture loans for Small-medium farmers.
  • Give subsidy to such crop insurance
  • Stop interest subvention to farmers. Because it’s not really helping the lower strata for the farmers.
  • Criticism: an insurance works for the farmer when the crop fails, while subvention helps even under normal circumstance.
Sukanya Shiksha scheme
  • Committee proposed this deposit scheme to link education with banking habits.
  • Lead bank in each district, will open the account for each poor girl enrolling in middle school
Jan Dhan
  • While Jan Dhan Yojana improved the financial inclusion but gaps because of inadequate ‘last mile’ service delivery, women, Micro-small enterprises, north-eastern, eastern and central states.
  • We need to change in the banks’ traditional business model through greater reliance on mobile technology for ‘last mile’ service delivery, given the challenges of topography and security issues in some areas.
  • Use USSD technology to deliver mobile banking services to people with non-smart phones.
  • We need to reviewed flow of credit to the micro, small and medium enterprises
  • Create a system of unique identification for all MSME borrowers and the sharing of information with credit bureaus.
  • Use CSR funding to nurture SHG.

Stand Up India Scheme

by Department of Financial Services (DFS) to promote entrepreneurship among SC/ST and Women
→ 2 projects per bank branch
→ Target atleast 2.5 lakh borrowers
→ loan amount- 10 to 100 lakh for greenfield projects in non-agriculture sector
→ duration- upto 7 years

MUDRA goes under SIDBI

Government decides to (1) MUDRA agency will be converted into MUDRA-SIDBI Bank. It’ll be a wholly owned subsidiary of SIDBI. (2) Will setup a Credit guarantee fund to help Mudra refinance loans to Micro-Smal units. Full form of MUDRA bank is Micro Units Development Refinance Agency (MUDRA)

Banking, Finance, Foreign trade: Misc. developments
Printing mein Mistake India has two companies printing banknotes. (1) RBI owned Bharatiya Reserve Bank Note Mudran Private Limited (BRBNMPL) with plants at Mysore in Karnataka, and Salboni in West Bengal (2) Government owned Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India (SPMCIL) with plants at Dewas(MP) and Nasik.
→ This Nasik press has printed defective Rs.1000 notes wherein the security thread is missing. 300 million such notes printed.
→ Rajanbhai has given stern instructions to fix this mess.
Banking For transection >2 lakh, compulsory to quote PAN card number. Earlier this limit was Rs. 1 lakh
Banking Negotiable instruments Act 1881 deals with cheque bouncing cases. Over 18 lakh cases pending. Earlier- the victim had to file case from where cheque issued- but it was time consuming to travel for him. With 2015 amendment, he can file case where the cheque was deposited.
Finance ASBA: Application Supported by Blocked Amount facility. ASBA is compulsory for all investors applying for public issues. Under this facility, the bid money remains in applicant’s account until shares are allotted.
foreign-trade Soverign Gold bond issue coming soon. Benefits
→ will be held in books of RBI or depositories so no mismanagement
→ can be used as loan-colletaral just like physical gold
→ no fear of adulteration or making charges
→ no risk and no cost of storage
→ on maturity you get prevailing market rate, plus interest at regular period.
foreign-trade India wants WTO to enact a trade facilitation agreement (TFA) in services. This will help Indian workers get multiple entry visas, visa-free travel for foreign tourists and long term visas for business community

Ministry: Petroleum

Petroleum Ministry:
→ 5 lakh women die because of indoor pollution of wood/gobar stove.
→ By 2018, 70% will be covered under the LPG net. New helpline (1906) to report LPG leaks.
→ from first April, Kerosene subsidy will be transferred under the direct benefit transfer – DBT route, just like the LPG subsidy.
→ PNG for kitchens, CNG for vehicles. PNG cheaper than CNG.
→ Petronet LNG: India’s biggest gas biggest gas importer. It has signed deal with Qatar’s RasGAS to import gas at lower price.

Ministry: agro

Agri Ministry- Notable schemes/initiatives:

  • Soil Health Card and Neem Coated Urea to reduce urea overuse,
  • Parampragat Krishi Vikas Yojan to promote organic farming. Prime
  • Minister Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY) to provide water to every farm.
  • National Agriculture Market Scheme (NAM) launched to connect mandis across the entire country.
  • Target of giving 8.5 lakh crore loans to farmers this year.
  • Increased the number of extension worker posts.
  • New colleges, animal breeding and research centres. Blue revolution to boost fisheries. Mera Gaon Mera Garav, Mission 2050, Farmers First, Student Ready and so many other schemes.

Ministry: Textile-  ATUFS and DBT

Textile ministry’s measure:

  • ‘Amended Technology Upgradation Fund Scheme’ (ATUFS) where 15 per cent subsidy would be given on capital investment in textile business
  • “Price Deficiency Payment System” (as an alternative to minimum support price) to cotton farmers, will be started from Maharashtra. If Cotton prices fall below MSP; Textil min => State Government => Farmers’s DBT account. Experiment @Arvi taluk, Wardha district of Maharashtra.

Ministry: Textile- 0% Effluent norms

  • Under the Environment Protection Act of 1986
  • Textile units shall establish Zero Liquid Discharge — effluent treatment plant, if waste water discharge greater than 25 kilo litres a day.
  • For textile clusters- common plants irrespective of size of the unit.
  • Redeploy the effluent water back in the production process after recycling.
  • Minimal extraction of ground water.

Criticism of this rule

  • Smaller textile units wouldn’t be able to afford the costly equipment for treating effluents with a zero liquid discharge approach.
  • We’ll further loose export ground to Bangladesh and Vietnam
  • Technologies for such treatment plants is steam and electricity-intensive, leading to higher greenhouse gas emissions as India largely relies on coal for po

GS3: Economy: Infra, Investment

Infra Vijay Kelkar Committee on PPP revival says ‘Swiss Challenge’ model of auctioning infrastructure is not a good idea. because it’s not transparent, has information asymmetry, bidders don’t get free and equal treatment. More details of Swiss challenge model, available under Mains L5/P2 PowerPoint.
infra-communication TRAI says
→ call drops increasing because subscribers rising but the investment not rising in telecom infrastructure
→ consultation papers are not opinion polls. So juntaa sending readymade cut-paste template email reply on free basics, net-neutrality etc. will not serve the purpose.
infra-invest Government approves Hybrid Annuity based PPP model for wastewater recycling in Namami Gange Programme.
infra-road Highway ministry awards Zozilla Pass tunnel project to a private company under “Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transffer (annuity) basis”. This will improve connectivity between J&K and Leh-Ladakh.
infra-urban SEBI RITES norms proposed. max. 75% be given to QIB, must be keep in public domain for 21 days.

UDAY scheme for Discoms

UDAY -Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana by Power ministry.
→ Feature- State Governments voluntarily take over 75% of debt burden of electricity distribution companies (Discom) & help to reduce their transmission losses & coal-supply.
→ Benefit:-if Discom runs efficiently then 24×7 power to everyone. So far 15 out of 29 states/UT joined.

Misc. Developments

→ Department of Heavy Industry has 31 public sector enterprises, among them 19 making losses. So department will do case by case assessment, if company is beyond saving just like Gotham city and Delhi then it’ll be closed down and employees will be given VRS. Latest closing is HMT watches and giving VRS to its employees.
→ AAI signs MoU with Sinapore for maintaining the terminal building of airports at Jaipur and Ahmedabad.
→ Ambani, Adani, GVK bought coal mines in abroad in recent years. But now their investment is eroded because fall in the global prices of coal. On the other hand, India set to become World’s largest coal producer by 2023.
→ 2012: Justice MB Shah report on illegal iron ore mining. 2015: government lifts ban on mining. And now export duty reduced.
→ Commerce ministry thinking to revising the minimum wages of tea plantation workers.