Important Current Affairs for CLAT-2nd August 2022

Zimbabwe launched gold coins as legal tender to tackle inflation

Zimbabwe has launched gold coins to be sold to the public in a bid to tame runaway inflation that has further eroded the country’s unstable currency. The unprecedented move was announced by the country’s central bank, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, to boost confidence in the local currency.

The coin is called ‘Mosi-oa-Tunya’ which refers to Victoria Falls in the local Tonga language. The coins will have liquid asset status so that they could be easily converted to cash and locally and internationally tradable. The cost of one coin was $1,824 at the time of launch.

Over the years, Zimbabwe has tried a variety of methods to get the situation under control as a result of the severe levels of inflation it has been experiencing for the previous ten years. Trust in Zimbabwe’s currency is low after people saw their savings wiped out by hyperinflation in 2008 which reached 5 billion, according to the IMF.

About Zimbabwe:

  • Zimbabwe, officially the Republic of Zimbabwe, is a landlocked country located in Southeast Africa, between the Zambezi and Limpopo Rivers, bordered by South Africa to the south, Botswana to the south-west, Zambia to the north, and Mozambique to the east.

  • The capital and largest city is Harare. The second largest city is Bulawayo.

  • A country of roughly 15 million people, Zimbabwe has 16 official languages, with English, Shona, and Ndebele the most common. It was once known as the “Jewel of Africa” for its great prosperity.

Commonwealth Games 2022: Weightlifter Harjinder Kaur claimed the bronze medal

India’s Harjinder Kaur claimed the bronze medal in the women’s 71kg weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games 2022 at Birmingham. England’s Sarah Davies won gold with a Commonwealth Games record of 229kg, while young Alexis Ashworth of Canada won silver with a total lift of 214kg. ‘

Career of Harjinder Kaur:

Harjinder started Weightlifting in the year 2016 at Punjab University. Her father works as a Farmer in Punjab and is the sole earner in the family. She was onboarded in the Indian National Camp Patiala in August 2021. She won the 2021 Commonwealth Senior Championship Silver Medalist.

Indian Women Savitri Jindal replaces China’s Yang Huiyan to become Asia’s Richest Woman

Savitri Jindal, the Chairperson Emeritus of OP Jindal Group, has surpassed China’s Yang Huiyan to become Asia’s richest woman, as per the real-time Bloomberg Billionaires Index. The 72-year-old Savitri Jindal who also holds the position of the richest woman in India has a total fortune of $11.3 billion.

Jindal’s net worth has fluctuated wildly in recent years. It fell to $3.2 billion in April 2020 at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, then to $15.6 billion in April 2022 due to a rise in commodity prices following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Key points:

  • The fortune of Yang Huiyan, owner of China’s largest real estate developer ‘Country Garden Holdings’, dropped by more than half in 2022, from $ 24 billion to $11 billion. She had been Asia’s richest woman for the past five years.

  • Jindal, 72, is India’s richest woman and the 10th-richest person in the country. She became the chairwoman of the Jindal Group shortly after her husband died in a helicopter crash in 2005.

  • Savitri also boasts of a career in politics. In 2009, she was re-elected and was appointed as the cabinet minister in the Haryana government.


Narendra Singh Tomar to give Agriculture Infrastructure Fund Awards

Union Agriculture Minister for the Government of India, Narendra Singh Tomar gave out Agriculture Infrastructure Fund Awards in New Delhi. As a specific Central Government programme, the Agriculture Infrastructure Fund was introduced two years ago as part of the expansive Aatmanirbhar Bharat Package. For investments in the development of post-harvest management infrastructure and community farming assets, it offers a medium-long term credit facility.

13,700 applicants have gotten over Rs 10,000 crore in funding as of right now out of the 23,000+ applications that have been submitted on the integrated site of the Agri Infra Fund. The approved projects include cold-store and cold-chain projects, assaying units, primary processing units, custom hiring centres, sorting and grading units, and warehouses.

About Aatmanirbhar Bharat:

The slogan Atmanirbhar Bharat, which translates to “self-reliant India,” was adopted and made popular by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in connection with the nation’s economic development objectives. The idea is a catch-all for the Modi administration’s aspirations for India to participate more actively in the global economy and to improve its efficiency, competitiveness, and resilience.

PM Modi unveils Revamped Distribution Sector Program

Revamped Distribution Sector Program that is based on reforms and results was adopted by the Union Cabinet, which is presided over by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. By giving DISCOMs conditional financial assistance for the bolstering of supply infrastructure, the Scheme aims to increase the operational efficacy and financial viability of all DISCOMs/Power Departments, excluding those in the private sector. The eligibility for the assistance will depend on the DISCOM completing pre-qualifying requirements and achieving basic minimum benchmarks that will be assessed using an agreed-upon evaluation system linked to financial improvements. Instead of using a one-size-fits-all approach, the implementation of the Scheme would be dependent on the action plan developed for each state.

KEY POINTS:

  • With an expected GBS from the Central Government of Rs. 97,631 crore, the Scheme will have an outlay of Rs. 3,03,758 crore.

  • The current approved projects for the Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh under the Schemes of IPDS, DDUGJY, and PMDP-2015 are proposed to be incorporated into this Scheme, and the savings from their GBS would be included in the total expenditure of the Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme under the current terms and conditions until their expiration on 31 March 2022.

  • The funds under these Schemes would be accessible for the approved ongoing projects under the Prime Minister’s Development Program for the Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh under IPDS and DDUGJY as well as the identified projects under IPDS through the end of March 2023.

  • In accordance with predetermined and agreed-upon performance trajectories, such as AT&C losses, ACS-ARR gaps, infrastructure upgrade performance, consumer services, hours of supply, corporate governance, etc., the DISCOM‘s performance is evaluated annually under the terms of the Scheme.

  • For DISCOMs to qualify for funding under the Scheme in that year, they must receive at least 60 percent of the possible points and pass a minimum standard in relation to specific criteria.

Objectives of the Scheme:

  • By 2024–2025, AT&C losses should be reduced to 12–15% levels across all of India.

  • ACS-ARR gap to be closed by 2024–2025.

  • Enhancing Quality, Reliability, and Affordability of Power Supply to Consumers Through a Financially Sustainable and Operationally Efficient Distribution Sector.

  • Developing Institutional Capabilities for Modern DISCOMs.

IMF Signed Extended Fund Facility(EFF) With Pakistan

IMF(International Monetary Fund) provides assistance to countries experiencing serious payment imbalances because of structural impediments or slow growth and an inherently weak balance-of-payments position.

IMF’s Extended Fund Facility:

1) It provides support for comprehensive programs including the policies needed to correct structural imbalances over an extended period

2) As structural reforms to correct deep-rooted weaknesses often take time to implement and bear fruit, EFF engagement and repayment cover longer periods than most Fund arrangements.

3) The funds are provided for up to 3 to 4 years. And amounts drawn under an EFF are to be repaid over 5–10 years.

4) The size of borrowing under EFF is guided by a country’s financing needs, capacity to repay, and track record with past use of IMF resources

5) When a country borrows from the IMF, it commits to undertake policies to overcome economic and structural problems. Under an EFF, these commitments, including specific conditions (like elimination of price controls, ceiling on govt. borrowing minimum level of forex etc), are expected to have a strong focus on structural reforms to address institutional or economic weaknesses, in addition to policies to maintain macroeconomic stability.

IMF-Pak Recent Agreement:

The International Monetary Fund said, it has reached a staff-level agreement with the Pakistani government for the revival of a bailout program, providing a welcome reprieve to the country as it struggles with a cratering economy, depreciating currency, high inflation and political instability.

The various financing facilities of IMF are :

(a) Extended Fund Facility (b) Stand-by Arrangements (c) Precautionary and Liquidity Line (d) Flexible Credit Line.

Tamil Nadu Police received President’s colour from Venkaiah Naidu

In an usual event at Rajarathinam Stadium in Chennai, Chief Minister M.K. Stalin received the renowned “President’s Colours” for the Tamil Nadu Police from Vice-President of India M. Venkaiah Naidu. One of the very few law enforcement agencies in the nation to be awarded the coveted “President’s Colours” is the Tamil Nadu Police. To commemorate the achievement, Mr. Stalin declared that each police officer in the service would get a medal.

KEY POINTS:

  • One of the very few police departments in the nation to be awarded the coveted “President’s Colours” is the Tamil Nadu Police.

  • While late leader M. Karunanidhi was the Chief Minister, the “President’s Colours” for the Tamil Nadu Police were approved as early as August 19, 2009. However, it has taken all these years for them to be presented.

  • Speaking at the event, Mr. Naidu claimed that the Tamil Nadu Police was among the best in the nation and was renowned for providing exemplary service. He acknowledged that Tamil Nadu was home to the nation’s first women’s commando unit, but said that “a lot remains to be done to give them equal opportunities” and encouraged police officers to be “particularly sensitive” to crimes against women.

  • Additionally, Mr. Naidu urged the police to combat contemporary crimes including internet fraud and cybercrime. He also applauded the Tamil Nadu administration for offering accommodation options for law enforcement officers in the State.

  • Shankar Jiwal, the chief of the Chennai Police, and Director-General of Police C. Sylendra Babu also addressed the gathering. The Vice President was welcomed by the CM, Chief Secretary V. Irai Anbu, Home Secretary K. Phanindra Reddy, DGP, and Chennai Police Commissioner when the cavalcade entered the stadium earlier.

The State Disaster Response Force, Commandos, Coastal Security Group, and the Nilgiris police contingents reviewed the Guard of Honour after the chief guest had taken the formal salute. At the ceremony, the Tamil Nadu Police Pipe Band also put on a magnificent performance. The parade’s commander was IPS officer A. Pradeep.