Top 5 Current Affairs: 8 February 2019

Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban): Government institutes PMAY (U) Awards to reward top performers

The Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs on February 8, 2019 instituted the ‘PMAY (U) awards for Implementation and Innovation’ under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) to reward the “Top Performers” in different categories and attain the goal of ‘Housing for All’ in a sustained manner.

The award scheme aims to recognise the outstanding performance and promote a healthy competition between States and UTs, Urban Local Bodies, Beneficiaries and Housing Finance Corporations.

India climbs 8 Spots in 2019 International Intellectual Property Index; ranks 36th

India climbed eight places in the 2019 International Intellectual Property (IP) Index, ranking at 36th position among 50 countries. India’s overall score has increased from 30.07 percent in 2018 to 36.04 percent in 2019.

In 2018 International Intellectual Property Index, India was ranked 44th out of 50 countries. The seventh edition of the International Intellectual Property Index, “Inspiring Tomorrow” was released by the Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC) of U.S. Chamber of Commerce on February 7, 2019.

Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana: Guidelines launched for States to implement scheme; PM-Kisan Portal launched

The Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare on February 7, 2019 launched a platform named PM Kisan,, under the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana (PM-KISAN) for uploading the details of the Small and Marginal Farmers (SMF).

All Small and Marginal Farmers (SMF) with 2 hectares of cultivable land will be provided income support of Rs 6000 per year. The amount will be transferred directly into their account in 3 equal installments.

US-India CEO Forum to be held on February 14; American members of Forum announced

US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross on February 7, 2019 announced the names of the American private sector members of the US-India CEO Forum. MasterCard CEO Ajay Banga and Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf are among the members of the US-India CEO Forum.

The first meeting of the US-India CEO Forum under the US President Donald Trump Administration will be held in New Delhi on February 14, 2019. The meeting will be co-chaired by US Commerce Secretary, Wilbur Ross and Union Minister of Commerce and Industry and Civil Aviation, Suresh Prabhu.

Setback for chit funds, Cabinet approves amendments to Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Bill, 2018

The Union Cabinet on February 6, 2019 approved the proposal to move official amendments to the Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Bill, 2018. The amendments were recommended by the Standing Committee on Finance (SCF). 

The official amendments will strengthen the Bill to effectively tackle the menace of illicit deposit taking activities in the country, and prevent schemes such as Saradha Chit Fund Scheme from duping poor people of their hard earned savings.

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