1. Hindu share dips below 80%, Muslim share grows but slower
i. The share of Hindus in India’s population has shown the sharpest dip in a decade since Independence and has dropped below 80 per cent.
ii. According to figures of the religion census of 2011, yet to be officially released, Hindus comprised 78.35 per cent of the total population of 121.05 crore, compared with 80.45 per cent of the total population in 2001.
iii. In absolute terms, however, the Hindu population increased 14.5 per cent from 82.75 crore to 94.78 crore during the period (2001-11).
iv. The 2011 religion census data also shows that the share of Muslims in the population has risen from 13.4 per cent in 2001 to 14.2 per cent with some border states showing a high increase.
v. The share of other religious groups like Sikhs and Christians in the total population remained steady at a little over 2 per cent each, roughly in the same range as in the 2001 census.
2. A tracker to curb sex determination
i. A simple set top box is helping prevent sex determination and female foeticide.
ii. The civil administration in Jind has now made it mandatory for all ultrasound labs in the district to install active tracking devices with their machines so that the details of the tests become available online to the Chief Medical Officer.
iii. Jind does not figure in the list of the 12 districts of Haryana identified for concerted action through the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao campaign launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
iv. The district administration has introduced the scheme of active tracking of ultrasound machines to curb their misuse for sex determination tests and to improve the sex ratio.
3. Kerala government slaps Rs 54 crore fine on 4 online traders including Flipkart, Jabong
i. Kerala Commercial Taxes Department has slapped a fine of Rs 53.63 crore on four online trading companies including Flipkart and Jabong for allegedly doing illegal business in the state.
ii. The fine was imposed by the intelligence wing of the Commercial Taxes Department for the year 2012-13 and 2013-14
iii. E-commerce major Flipkart has been asked to pay a fine of Rs 47.15 crore, Jabong.Com Rs.3.89 crore, Vector e-commerce Rs 2.23 crore and Robemall Apparels Rs 36 lakh.
4. SBI inks 100 mn euro loan pact with European bank
i. State Bank of India has signed a loan agreement for 100 million euro (about Rs 700 crore) with European Investment Bank for lending to private businesses in the country.
ii. The loan will be utilised to support the development of private sector, in particular small and medium-sized enterprises ( SMEs), social and economic infrastructure as well as climate change mitigation and adaptation in the country.
iii. Agreements related to the first tranche of 55 million euro and the second of 45 million euro were signed in June and November 2014.
5. 9 Crore sign up for LPG cash-subsidy scheme
i. More than 60 per cent of LPG customers in the country have joined the ambitious PAHAL scheme for receiving cash subsidy so that they can buy cooking gas (LPG) at market price.
ii. Over 9 crore consumers, out of a total customer base of 15.33 crore, have joined the Direct Benefit Transfer for LPG (DBTL) scheme and Rs 2,262 crore in cash has been transfered to them.
iii. The DBTL Scheme for LPG consumers (PAHAL) was launched on November 15, 2014 in 54 districts and in the rest of the country on January 1, 2015. The Scheme aims to transfer the subsidy on LPG directly into the bank accounts of over 15 crore LPG consumers.
6. National Girl Child Day – 24th January
i. Prime Minister Narendra Modi today saluted the unparalleled accomplishments of the girl child on National Girl Child Day.
ii. “On National Girl Child Day, I salute the unparalleled accomplishments of the girl child. Their role in nation building is paramount,” PM Modi tweeted.
iii. Since 2008, the government has celebrated the National Girl Child Day on January 24 every year across India to raise awareness and consciousness of the society with regard to the girl child.
7. RBI Relaxes Overseas Loan Recast Rules
i. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) relaxed rules for companies and banks to restructure and reschedule existing overseas borrowings by permitting an increase in the total cost of borrowing offshore.
ii. Indian firms have found it difficult to restructure existing borrowings after facing a sharp slowdown in the economy.
iii. The banking regulator also allowed changes in the drawdown and repayment schedules of such overseas borrowings, the Reserve Bank of India said.
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