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June 17 to 20 Current Affairs

International Issues

The Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh has announced that India will contribute an additional 10 billion dollars to the IMF to help it promote adequate funds among creditors and prevent further economic crisis. Addressing the Plenary session of the G-20 Summit in Los Cabos , he said the IMF has a critical supportive role to play in stabilizing the Eurozone and all member nations must help the agency play the role of a stabilizer.

Describing the global economic situation as deeply worrying , Dr Singh said the sovereign debt and that banking crisis in Eurozone has grave implications for the health of the entire global economy.

The Prime Minister pointed out that less developed and developing countries were facing serious problems because of the global crisis. He said investment in infrastructure in developing countries will lay the foundation for rapid growth in the longer term besides providing an immediate stimulus for their economies.

Dr. Singh said the G -20 grouping must take steps to substantially expand the resource base of Multilateral development banks to ensure that they have resources to help developing countries pursue their development goals.

Leaders of BRICS Nations agreed to enhance their own contributions to the IMF to promote adequate burden sharing amongst creditors. A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the grouping comprising of India, Brazil, China, Russia and South Africa in Los Cabos.

The meeting hosted by Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh however imposed a rider stating that IMF will utilize the enhanced resources only after the existing funds including the New Arrangements to borrow are ubstantially utilized. 

The leaders of the emerging economies pointed out that these new contributions are being made in anticipation that all the reforms agreed upon in 2010 will be fully implemented in a timely manner, including a comprehensive reform of voting power and reform of quota shares.

The 20th World Green Summit started in the Brazilian Capital Rio De Janeiro on June 20. One of the theme of this summit will be eradication of poverty for a green economy. 

The G20 countries have agreed to give priority to investment in infrastructure in developing countries as a way to stimulate global growth, which has been stunted due to the faltering world economy and the Eurozone crisis. 

A 14-page declaration was released at the end of the seventh summit of the Group of 20 developed and developing countries in Los Cabos in Mexico. Stating that eradicating poverty and inclusive, sustainable and balanced growth remains the core objectives of the G 20 development goals, the declaration reaffirmed the commitment of the grouping to work with developing countries particular low income nations to fulfill internationally agreed millennium development goals.

The declaration said the G-20 will intensify its efforts to create a more conducive environment for development, including infrastructure development. It also committed to take all necessary actions to strengthen global growth, restore confidence besides enhance job creation. It said the Eurozone members of the grouping will act to safeguard the integrity and stability of the region, improve functioning of financial markets and break the feedback loop between the sovereigns and the banks.

National Issues

A new Central scheme, ‘Swadhar Greh', is being launched in Haryana to protect destitute women, including those suffering from HIV/AIDS, prisoners released from jail and those who are without family so that they could “lead their life with dignity”.

It would also cover women who are under social and economic family tension or discord, are made to leave their homes without any means of subsistence and have no special protection from exploitation or facing litigation on account of material disputes.

It would also safeguard trafficked women besides girls who are rescued or run away from brothels or other places where they face exploitation.

The government decided to allocate 5 million tonnes of additional foodgrains to poor families and allow sale of 3 million tonnes of wheat to bulk users at cheap rates. This will cost the exchequer a total of 10,000 crore rupees.

Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Prof K V Thomas told reporters after the meeting Empowered Group of Ministers, EGoM headed by Finance Minister Mr. Pranab Mukherjee todat took the decison to this effect. It also agreed to allow 3 million tonnes of wheat for sale through Open Market.

Prof. Thomas said for above poverty line, APL families the government had allocated 2 million tonnes of foodgrains last fiscal, but only about 50 per cent was lifted by states. The decision comes in the backdrop of government facing a storage crunch. Foodgrain stocks in godowns are piling up and hold a record 82 million tonnes against a capacity of 63 million tonnes.

Under public distribution system, BPL families get wheat at 4.15 rupee per kg and rice at 5.65 rupees per kg. The rate for APL is 6.10 rupees for wheat and 8.30 rupees for rice. The EGoM fixed the wheat price in OMSS at 1,170 rupes per quintal against the current support price of 1285 rupees per quintal. The entire freight cost would be borne by the government.

Dr. Rameshwar Oraon, Chairperson, National Commission for Scheduled Tribes presented a Special Report on "Good Governance for Tribal Development and Administration" to the President, Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil in Rashtrapati Bhawan. He was accompanied with Smt. K Kamala Kumari and Shri B.L Meena, Members of the Commission. 

Planning Commission has given investment clearance of the scheme Uderasthan Barrage and other interconnected and interdependent Scheme of Bihar (New ERM). The schemes are estimated to cost Rs. 531.01 crore at 2011-12 Price Level.

The project shall be completed in the financial year 2013-14 and Plan accounts would be closed by 31st March 2014. Project may accordingly be executed as per the approved outlays in the State Annual Plans. 

The State Finance Department would restrict the expenditure to the approved cost and no additional expenditure beyond approved cost may be permitted unless the revised estimate is got approved following the prescribed procedure.

The Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Amendment Act, 2011 has made it mandatory for switchover of the existing analogue Cable TV networks to Digital Addressable System (DAS) by December 2014, in a phased manner. In respect of four metros of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai, the digital switchover is mandated to be completed by 30th June 2012.

NABARD has launched its ‘anchor NGO’ scheme to initiate bank-SHG linkage for women. The Government of India initiative, conceived for the most backward districts of the country, was launched on a pilot basis. Launched in 113 districts in the country.

Bilateral Issues

India and Botswana have agreed to actively collaborate and share their experiences in the field of human settlements. This was decided at a meeting between an eight-member delegation led by Botswana’s Minister of Presidential Affairs and Public Administration Mokgwetsi Masisi and Minister of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation Kumari Selja in New Delhi.

Both the sides discussed the areas of mutual interest. These include slum upgradation and affordable housing. They also agreed to help each other in skill development and monitoring of training programmes for the beneficiaries through biometrics tracking system and community involvement in government programmes.

Economic Issues

The Finance Ministry has asked banks to ensure that at least one person per family across the country, has a bank account in the next six months. According to 2011 census, only three in five families, have a bank account in the country.

A bank account for every family will help the government and its agencies to implement electronic fund transfer of wages, salaries or payment to suppliers.

The banks have already achieved the target of opening a branch in over 73,000 villages having a population of above 2000 people.

India is poised to occupy the sixth position in the top 10 wealth markets this year after edging out Spain for 10th slot in 2011. According to Datamonitor's 2012 global wealth market report, uncertainty about the future of the euro and the worsening of the sovereign crisis in Europe are predicted to cause continuing problems. But many emerging markets are expected to continue marching ahead. 

The report said, the world order of wealth markets is witnessing a tilt towards emerging economies which are expected to overtake their Western European counterparts going forward. India, in particular, will experience explosive growth, and is anticipated to jump sixth place by the end of this year, the report said.

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has decided to keep all the key rates unchanged in its mid-quarter policy review announced. The cash reserve ratio (CRR) has also been kept unchanged at 4.75 per cent while the policy repo rate retained at 8 per cent. 

Consequently, the reverse repo rate will remain unchanged at 7 per cent, and the marginal standing facility (MSF) rate and the Bank Rate at 9 per cent.

In Uttar Pradesh about 8 thousand villages with the population of 1600 to 2000 will be covered with quality banking facilities during current financial year.  Banking facilities like ATM, Credit Cards, Net banking, Personnel Provident Fund and drop boxes will be made available in these villages under the scheme .

The government has emphasised that bankers should take care of interests of common men with their commercial interests. Both centre and state governments have prepared a road map provide better banking facilities to farmers, self -help groups and women groups across the state particularly in minority dominated areas.  

1500 select villages 20 each from all 75 districts of the state will be adopted by the various banking organisations to conduct developmental works. Directions have been issued for all Banks for opening more of ultra-small branches and minimum one bank account from every family in rural areas and promoting financial dealings through bank account`s in rural areas of the state.

The Reserve Bank has extended the 2 per cent interest subsidy scheme by another year on rupee export credit to the labour-oriented and small scale sectors. The RBI, in its circular, said that exporters of handicrafts, handlooms, readymade garments, processed agriculture products and carpets will be eligible for interest subvention to be available up to the 31st of March, 2013. 

It will be effective from the 1st of April this year. Besides, sports goods and toys exporters would also be eligible for such benefit.


India's shuttle queen Saina Nehwal has clinched the Women's Singles title of the Indonesian Open Super Series Badminton tournament in Jakarta. In the final match 505 fifth seed Saina defeated China's World Number four Xuerui Li, 13-21, 22-20, 21-19.

This is Saina's second Super Series title of 2012. She had bagged the first Super Series title in Thailand last week. Saina's first title of 2012 came in March, where she won the Swiss Open Grand Prix Gold.

Harmeet Desai has defeated Belgian Cedric Nuytin 4-2 to win the gold medal in the Under-21 men's final of the Brazil Open Table Tennis in Santos. With this win, he has become the first Indian to achieve such a feat. 

Desai triumphed 11-3, 6-11, 11-6, 11-9, 5-11, 11-6. Earlier, the fourth seed had beaten compatriot Soumyajit Ghosh in the semi-final to earn a meeting with Nuytin.


Well known Hindi Novelist and short story writer Arun Prakash died in New Delhi. He was 64. His novel Kopal Katha was very popular. He also wrote short stories like Bhayya Express, Jal Prantar and Abhisamragya.

Arun Prakash also edited Sahitya Academy’ Magazine- Samkaaleen Bhartiya Sahitya. He was also associated with Hindi paper Dainik Jagaran in the Chief Editorship of Kamleshwar. He also wrote script for many TV Serials.

Mr. R Swaminathan has been appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Austria. He is presently Ambassador of India to Egypt since 2009.


The Missing Persons Project, designed, developed and hosted by the National Informatics Centre-Andhra Pradesh has won the prestigious “eWORLD 2012” award for the best initiative for use of information and communication technology in public safety, security and disaster management category.

Science & Technology

The technology firm Microsoft has unveiled its own tablet COMPUTER to compete against Apple's hugely successful iPad. The touchscreen computer is Microsoft's first major venture into computer hardware. 

The surface, as it calls, has been designed to operate as a Personal Computer with other attachable keyboard cover and as a TV viewing platform. 



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