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Important Current Affairs for CLAT-27th June 2023

S&P Retains India’s Growth Projection at 6% for FY24; Fastest Growing Economy in Asia Pacific

S&P Global Ratings, a leading credit rating agency, has retained India’s GDP growth projection at six percent for the fiscal year 2023-2024. This forecast positions India as the fastest growing economy among the Asia Pacific nations. The rating agency’s decision to maintain the growth outlook is based on the country’s domestic resilience.

India, Vietnam, and the Philippines Lead the Growth Chart

According to S&P Global Ratings’ quarterly economic update for the Asia-Pacific region, India, Vietnam, and the Philippines are expected to experience the highest growth rates, each projected at around six percent. The medium-term growth outlook for these countries remains solid. S&P emphasizes that Asian emerging market economies continue to be among the fastest growing in the global growth outlook through 2026.

Inflation Expected to Soften; Interest Rate Cut Delayed

S&P Global Ratings predicts that retail inflation in India will likely ease to five percent in the fiscal year 2023-2024, down from 6.7 percent in the previous year. The agency expects a decline in fuel and core inflation due to softer crude prices and a moderation in demand, respectively. However, S&P suggests that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will postpone interest rate cuts until early 2024. The RBI aims to observe consumer inflation moving towards its target range of four percent.

China’s Growth Forecast Lowered; Resilience Seen in Rest of the Region

S&P Global Ratings has revised down China’s growth forecast for 2023 to 5.2 percent from the previous estimate of 5.5 percent. However, the agency has left the growth projections for the rest of the region broadly unchanged, citing domestic resilience as a contributing factor.

Times Asia Rankings 2023: IISc Tops Among Indian Universities

In the recently released Asia University Rankings 2023 by Times Higher Education (THE), the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) has emerged as the leading university in India. The rankings highlight the performance and reputation of universities across Asia.

Key Points About the News

  1. IISc Secures Top Position: The Indian Institute of Science (IISc) has claimed the highest position among Indian universities, securing the 48th spot in the Asia University Rankings 2023.

  2. Indian Universities in Top 200: India has made a notable presence in the rankings, with a total of 18 universities featured among the top 200 in Asia. These institutions showcase the growing prominence of Indian higher education on the global stage.

  3. Indian Rankings in Top 100: Among the top 100 universities in Asia, India is represented by four institutions. Alongside IISc, JSS Academy of Higher Education and Research stands at 68th, Shoolini University of Biotechnology and Management Sciences at 77th, and Mahatma Gandhi University shares the 95th spot with Xi’an Jiaotong University from China.

  4. Number of Indian Universities Listed: India secures the third position in terms of the number of universities featured in the rankings, with 75 institutions listed. Japan holds the first position with 117 universities, followed by China with 95 universities.

  5. Changes Compared to Last Year: While India has improved its representation in the top 200, some universities that were previously included have dropped out this year. Notable exclusions from the list are Jawaharlal Nehru University, which was ranked 167th in 2022, and IIT Gandhinagar, which held the 120th position last year.

Asia University Rankings 2023: Top Rankings of India

Times Asia Rankings 2023: IISc Tops Among Indian Universities

In the Asia University Rankings 2023, Indian universities have demonstrated their potential and progress. Here are the top 10 Indian universities listed in the rankings:

  1. Indian Institute of Science – Rank 48

  2. JSS Academy of Higher Education and Research – Rank 68

  3. Shoolini University of Biotechnology and Management Sciences – Rank 77

  4. Mahatma Gandhi University – Rank 95

  5. International Institute of Information Technology, Hyderabad – Rank 106

  6. Alagappa University – Rank 111

  7. Saveetha University – Rank 113

  8. Jamia Millia Islamia – Rank 128

  9. Indian Institute of Technology Ropar – Rank 131

  10. Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology Delhi – Rank 137

These rankings reflect the diverse academic disciplines and research areas represented by Indian universities.

Centre Approves Rs. 56,415 Crore to 16 States under ‘Special Assistance to States for Capital Investment 2023-24’ Scheme

The Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Finance, Government of India, has granted approval for capital investment proposals totaling Rs. 56,415 crore to 16 States in the current financial year. This significant allocation falls under the ‘Special Assistance to States for Capital Investment 2023-24’ scheme, aiming to provide timely impetus to capital spending by States. The approved funds will support a range of projects in sectors such as health, education, irrigation, water supply, power, roads, bridges, and railways.

About the Scheme

The ‘Special Assistance to States for Capital Investment 2023-24’ scheme was introduced in the Union Budget 2023-24. Its objective is to enhance capital expenditure by providing special assistance to State Governments. Under this scheme, States are granted a 50-year interest-free loan, with an overall budget of Rs. 1.3 lakh crore for the financial year 2023-24. The scheme comprises eight parts, with Part-I constituting the largest allocation of Rs. 1 lakh crore. The distribution of funds to States is based on their share of central taxes and duties as per the 15th Finance Commission’s award.

Key Points about the Scheme

  1. Capital Investment Approval: The Ministry of Finance has approved capital investment proposals amounting to Rs. 56,415 crore for 16 States. The funds will be utilized for various capital projects, including those in the fields of health, education, irrigation, water supply, power, roads, bridges, and railways.

  2. Sectoral Focus: The scheme aims to bolster investment in key sectors and infrastructural development. Additionally, it provides funds for the State share of important initiatives such as the Jal Jeevan Mission and the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, thereby expediting progress in these sectors.

  3. Parts of the Scheme: The scheme is divided into eight parts, each addressing specific objectives and reforms. Part-II focuses on providing incentives to States for scrapping government vehicles, while Part-III and IV incentivize reforms in urban planning and urban finance, respectively. Part-V aims to increase housing stock for police personnel in urban areas. Part-VI promotes national integration and the “Make in India” concept through the construction of Unity Malls in each State. Part-VII is dedicated to providing financial assistance for the establishment of libraries with digital infrastructure at the Panchayat and Ward levels.

  4. Previous Year’s Performance: In the previous financial year, the Ministry of Finance executed a similar scheme, ‘Special Assistance to States for Capital Investment for 2022-23.’ Under this scheme, capital investment proposals worth Rs. 95,147.19 crore were approved, and an amount of Rs. 81,195.35 crore was disbursed to the States.

  5. Positive Response: The scheme has received commendation from Chief Ministers and Finance Ministers of States due to its flexibility and simplified design. It has played a crucial role in supporting capital spending by States, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

State-wise Allocation

Centre Approves Rs. 56,415 Crore to 16 States under ‘Special Assistance to States for Capital Investment 2023-24’ Scheme

The capital investment proposals approved under the ‘Special Assistance to States for Capital Investment 2023-24’ scheme have been allocated to the following States:

  1. Arunachal Pradesh: Rs. 1,255 crore

  2. Bihar: Rs. 9,640 crore

  3. Chhattisgarh: Rs. 3,195 crore

  4. Goa: Rs. 386 crore

  5. Gujarat: Rs. 3,478 crore

  6. Haryana: Rs. 1,093 crore

  7. Himachal Pradesh: Rs. 826 crore

  8. Karnataka: Rs. 3,647 crore

  9. Madhya Pradesh: Rs. 7,850 crore

  10. Mizoram: Rs. 399 crore

  11. Odisha: Rs. 4,528 crore

  12. Rajasthan: Rs. 6,026 crore

  13. Sikkim: Rs. 388 crore

  14. Tamil Nadu: Rs. 4,079 crore

  15. Telangana: Rs. 2,102 crore

  16. West Bengal: Rs. 7,523 crore

These allocations reflect the diverse range of sectors and projects that will receive funding, including health, education, irrigation, water supply, power, roads, bridges, and railways.

Mastercard CEO Michael Miebach Joins USISPF Board Of Directors

Mastercard CEO Michael Miebach has joined the board of directors of the US-India Strategic and Partnership Forum (USISPF). Observing that USISPF is a critical forum for business and government leaders to come together and drive the next phase of growth in the US-India partnership, Miebach said he believes the relationship between the two countries will define the future of the global economy and shape their ability to tackle the most pressing global challenges together. This strategic alliance aims to foster collaborations in various sectors and promote the growth and development of both economies.

By joining forces, both countries aim to drive innovation, promote digital transformation, and address global challenges. With Mastercard’s exemplary work in advancing the global digital economy and its alignment with India’s digital vision, this strategic partnership holds great promise for shaping the future of both nations.

About Miebach

  • Miebach, a Master of Business Administration from the University of Passau in Germany, joined Mastercard in 2010 to lead its Middle East and Africa operations.

  • He is a member of The Business Roundtable, The Business Council, the US-India CEO Forum, the International Advisory Panel of the Monetary Authority of Singapore, and The International Business Council of the World Economic Forum.

About the USISPF

The US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF) is committed to creating the most powerful strategic partnership between the U.S. and India. Promoting bilateral trade is an important part of our work, but our mission reaches far beyond this. It is about business and government coming together in new ways to create meaningful opportunities that have the power to change the lives of citizens. We are entering a new era based on a strategic partnership between the U.S. and India – one where we will work closely together with business and government leaders to achieve our goals of driving economic growth, job creation, innovation, inclusion, and entrepreneurship.

Infosys signs $454 million deal with Danske Bank for digital transformation

Infosys and Danske Bank have entered into a long-term collaboration aimed at accelerating the bank’s digital transformation goals. The collaboration, valued at $454 million for an initial 5-year period, with the potential for three one-year extensions, is intended to support Danske Bank in achieving its strategic objectives of improving client experiences, operational efficiency, and implementing advanced technologies for a modernized technological environment. This collaboration is expected to bring speed and scalability to Danske Bank’s digital transformation journey.

As a component of their collaboration

  • Infosys will purchase Danske Bank’s IT center in India for Danish Kroner (DKK) 13.6 million (approximately $2 million). The IT center currently employs more than 1,400 professionals. Infosys plans to bolster the bank’s digital strategy by greatly improving its IT operations and capabilities. This enhancement will be facilitated by Infosys Topaz, a suite of services, solutions, and platforms that leverage generative AI technology.

  • Based on the information disclosed in the exchange filing, Infosys anticipates that the transactions will be finalized by the second quarter of fiscal year 2024, pending the fulfillment of customary closing conditions. Danske Bank, which is based in Denmark, offers banking services to individuals, businesses, as well as large corporations and institutions.

  • Salil Parekh, Chief Executive Officer and MD of Infosys, stated that the collaboration with Danske Bank aims to enhance their core business by leveraging digital, cloud, and data capabilities. The objective is to enable Danske Bank to deliver increased value to its customers through the utilization of advanced AI technologies, including generative AI.

Important takeaways for all competitive exams:

  • Infosys Founders: N. R. Narayana Murthy, Nandan Nilekani;

  • Infosys CEO: Salil Parekh (2 Jan 2018–);

  • Infosys Revenue: 1 lakh crore INR (2021);

  • Infosys Founded: 2 July 1981, Pune;

  • Infosys Headquarters: Bengaluru;

  • Danske Bank CEO: Carsten Rasch Egeriis;

  • Danske Bank Headquarters: Copenhagen, Denmark;

  • Danske Bank Founded: 5 October 1871.

World MSME Day 2023: Date, Theme, Significance and History

International Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Day or World MSME Day is observed every year on 27th June all over the world to highlight the significance of MSMEs and how they play a crucial role in being the backbone of the country’s economy.

World MSME Day 2023- Theme

The theme MSME Day 2023 in India is “Future-ready MSMEs for India@100.” The Global Council for the Promotion of International Trade is also celebrating the day with “Building a Stronger Future Together” theme of this year. The global body is also launching #Brand10000MSMEs Network, a dynamic platform where MSMEs from around the world can connect, learn, and grow together.

World MSME Day 2023-History

  • The United Nations (UN) designated 27th June as Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Day through a resolution passed in the UN General Assembly in April 2017.

  • In May 2017, a program titled ‘Enhancing National Capacities for Unleashing Full Potentials of MSMEs in Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Developing Countries was launched.

  • It has been funded by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Sub-Fund of the United Nations Peace and Development Fund.

What is MSME? – An Introduction

MSME stands for Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises. In accordance with the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises Development (MSMED) Act in 2006, the enterprises are classified into two divisions.

  1. Manufacturing enterprises – engaged in the manufacturing or production of goods in any industry

  2. Service enterprises – engaged in providing or rendering services

Features of MSMEs

Here are some of the essential features of MSMEs

  1. MSMEs are known to provide reasonable assistance for improved access to the domestic as well as export markets for businesses

  2. MSMEs support product development, design innovation, intervention, and packaging elements of a business

  3. MSMEs support the upgrading of technology, infrastructure, and the modernization of this sector as a whole

  4. MSMEs provide employment opportunities and loans

  5. MSMEs provide credit limits or funding support to various banks in the country

Role of MSME in Indian Economy:

  • They are the growth accelerators of the Indian economy, contributing about 30% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

  • In terms of exports, they are an integral part of the supply chain and contribute about 48% of the overall exports.

  • MSMEs also play an important role in employment generation, as they employ about 110 million people across the country.

  • Interestingly, MSMEs are intertwined with the rural economy as well, as more than half of the MSMEs operate in rural India.

DBS Bank India appoints Rajat Verma as Managing Director

DBS Bank India has appointed Rajat Verma as managing director and head of institutional banking in India. The current head of institutional banking Niraj Mittal has recently moved to a new role as country head of DBS Bank in Australia. The bank said Mittal will focus on growing the DBS franchise there, including improving linkages with South-East Asia and South Asia.

Verma was, till recently, with HSBC India where he was managing director and country head of commercial banking in India. The statement said Verma brings a wealth of knowledge and deep industry expertise to DBS. He holds an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow, and a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from the Delhi College of Engineering.

About the DBS Bank

DBS Bank Limited, often known as DBS, is a Singaporean multinational banking and financial services corporation headquartered at the Marina Bay Financial Centre in the Marina Bay district of Singapore. The bank was previously known as The Development Bank of Singapore Limited, which “DBS” was derived from, before the present abbreviated name was adopted on 21 July 2003 to reflect its role as a global bank. It is one of the “Big Three” banks in Singapore, along with OCBC Bank and the United Overseas Bank (UOB).


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