Daily Current Affairs - February 03, 2020 (The Hindu, PIB, Fact Pedia)

February 03, 2020 - Find all the important news articles and editorials from The Hindu, PIB, Fact Pedia on our Daily Current Affairs Feed.

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The Hindu – Hyderabad Edition

  1. Money earned in India by NRIs will be taxed, says Nirmala
  • Where does it fall under UPSC Syllabus?
  • Prelims: Economic development
  • Mains: GS3: Economy - Taxation
  • Synopsis:
  • The Finance Bill proposed three major changes to prevent tax abuse (tax evasion) by citizens that don’t pay taxes anywhere in the world.
  • It said NRIs’ income abroad won’t be taxed in India unless it is from an Indian business or profession.
  • Ex: An NRI, living in Dubai, is not taxed for his income there, but has some earnings through something in India for which he doesn’t pay tax here. For that income which is generated in India, he must pay tax.
  • New changes:
  • Reducing the period of stay in India to 120 days from 182 days earlier for persons of Indian origin (PIOs) to be categorised as non-resident Indians (NRIs).
  • Citizens who don’t pay taxes anywhere will be deemed to be a resident; and
  • The definition of ‘not ordinarily resident’ has been tightened.


  1. Cognisant of constraints (editorial)
  • Where does it fall under UPSC Syllabus?
  • Prelims: Polity
  • Mains: GS2: Polity
  • Synopsis:
  • 15th finance commission has tabled its interim report in the parliament
  • 15th finance commission:
  • Chairman: NK Singh
  • Its recommendations will cover a period of five years from April 2021 to March 2026.
  • It was constituted by the president of India
  • Recommendations of the 15th finance commission:
  • 41% share for states from Centre’s divisible pool in 2020-21
  • 1% for the new Union territories of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.
  • Allocation of Rs 28,983 crore for disaster risk management in 2020-21, in addition to disaster response funds.
  • Demographic performance is added as a new parameter for deciding horizontal devolution between states


  1. Centre rejects advice on special grants for States
  • Where does it fall under UPSC Syllabus?
  • Prelims: Polity
  • Mains: GS2: Polity
  • Synopsis:
  • 15th Finance Commission had recommended special grants worth ₹6,764 crores to States in 2020-21, to ensure that these states do not receive an amount less than the previous year’s allocation.
  • But Centre rejected this recommendation saying it wants to introduce a new principle in allocation.
  • Accepted recommendations:
  • Granting the states 41% share of the divisible pool of tax collections.
  • The suggested grants-in-aid and post-devolution revenue deficit grants for 14 States.
  • The grants to local bodies.
  • Other grants like disaster-related grants and sectoral grants.


  1. The Budget’s blurred social sector vision (editorial)
  • Where does it fall under UPSC Syllabus?
  • Prelims: Polity & Governance
  • Mains: GS 2: Social Justice
  • Synopsis:
  • This article is about reduced allocations budget allocations to the social sector
  • Allocation to MGNREGA:
  • It is 10,000 crore which is less than the previous year
  • It makes difficult for states to meet the rising demand for MGNREGA work and to pay decent wages
  • Public Distribution System:
  • Its allocation reduced from 1.8 lakh crore to 1.08 lakh crore
  • If increased, it could have brought down inflation and battle against hunger
  • Health:
  • POSHAN ABHIYAN and Ayushman Bharat allocations though increased, but can’t deal with inflation.
  • Why is it a matter of concern?
  • This may impact real beneficiaries by reducing the coverage and providing irregular benefits.

Press Information Bureau (PIB)


  1. Budget 2020 announces the largest-ever science mission:
  • Which part of UPSC syllabus covers this:
  • Prelims: Current events of national and international importance
  • Mains: GS3: Science & Technology
  • Synopsis:
  • The Finance Minister has announced a National Mission on Quantum Technologies & Applications (NM-QTA).
  • About Quantum Technology:
  • Working principle: quantum theory, that explains the nature of energy and matter on the atomic and subatomic level.
  • Applications: Engineering solutions to extremely complex problems in computing, communications, sensing, chemistry, cryptography, imaging and mechanics.
  • National Mission on Quantum Technologies & Applications (NM-QTA)
  • It will be implemented for a period of 5 years by the Department of Science & Technology (DST).
  • Aim: To address the ever-increasing technological requirements of the society and take into account the international technology trends for the development of next-generation technologies.
  • Significance: It helps in preparing next-generation skilled manpower, boost translational research and encourage entrepreneurship and start-up ecosystem development.


  1. ‘Vivad Se Vishwas’ scheme proposed to reduce litigations in direct taxes; scheme to remain open till 30th June 2020
  • Which part of UPSC syllabus covers this:
  • Prelims: Economy
  • Mains: GS3: Economy
  • Synopsis:
  • The Finance minister announced the Vivad Se Vishwas scheme in Budget 2020-21 that helps in reducing litigation.
  • About the scheme:
  • Aim: reducing tax litigations pending at various forums.
  • Under this, a taxpayer is required to pay only the amount of the disputed taxes and will get complete waiver of interest and penalty if he/she pays by March 31, 2020.
  • Those who avail this scheme after that will have to pay some additional amount. The scheme will remain open till June 30, 2020.


  • Schemes/Rules/GO’s
  1. FM Announces NIRVIK Scheme for Exporters in Union Budget 2020-21
  • Implementing Agency: Ministry of Commerce and Industry
  • Aim: To provide
  1. Enhanced insurance cover
  2. Reduced premium for small exporters and
  3. Simplified procedure for claim settlements
  • Features of the scheme:
  • Insurance cover up to 90% of the principal and interest.
  • It includes both pre- and post-shipment credit.
  • At present, the Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (ECGC) provides a credit guarantee of up to 60% loss.
  • Benefits:
  • It helps to make Indian exports competitive and make ECGC procedures exporter friendly, benefiting MSME exporters.
  • It brings down the cost of credit due to capital relief, less provision requirement and liquidity.



  1. Green Bonds
  • Fixed-income financial instruments issued for funding of specific projects that have positive environmental and climate benefits.
  • Yes Bank was the first Indian Bank to issue Green Infrastructure Bonds (GIBs) in India in 2015.
  • Where these funds can be invested?
  • There are eight high-level categories as “green projects”—
  • renewable energy,
  • clean transportation,
  • sustainable water management,
  • climate-change adaptation,
  • energy efficiency,
  • sustainable waste management,
  • sustainable land use,
  • biodiversity conservation


Art & Culture
  1. Surajkund International Crafts Mela
  • It is the largest crafts fair in the world
  • It is a collaboration of Haryana Tourism with Union Ministries of Tourism, Textiles, Culture and External Affairs.
  • It showcases the handicrafts, handlooms and cultural fabric of India
  • Theme state: Himachal Pradesh
  • Partner country: Uzbekisthan


  1. Gatka Martial Art
  • It is a traditional martial art form of Sikh gurus.
  • It imbibes sword and sticks fighting skills and self-control.
  • It is originated when the 6th Sikh Guru Hargobind adopted ‘Kirpan’ for self-defense during the Mughal era.
  • Other art forms - States
  • Kalaripayattu - Kerala
  • Silambam - Tamil Nadu
  • Thang-ta - Manipur
  • Thoda - Himachal Pradesh
  • Lathi Khela - Punjab and Bengal
  • Pari-Khanda - Bihar by Rajputs
  • Mardani Khel - Maharashtra.
  1. Reports/Indices/Resolutions
  2. Global Misery Index
  • Created by Arthur Okun in 1960’s
  • It is the sum of inflation, unemployment rate figures and bank lending rates to measure US economy.
  • The higher the index, the more is the misery felt by average citizens.


  1. IMO 2020
  • New regulations of the International Maritime Organization
  • Objective: To reduce Sulphur oxides (SOx)
  • Regulations:
  • Bans ships from using fuels with sulphur content above 0.5 per cent, compared with 3.5 per cent previously.
  • Only ships fitted with sulphur-cleaning devices, known as scrubbers, are allowed to continue burning high-sulphur fuel.
  • Ships can opt for cleaner fuels, such as marine gas oil (MGO) and very low-sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO).
  • About Sox:
  • Source: Formed after combustion in engines
  • Impacts: Respiratory symptoms, lung diseases, and also leads to acid rain.
  • VLSFO contributes to highly polluting black carbon emissions.


  • TERM Bank
  1. Invisible hand market
  • Invisible Hand was introduced by Adam Smith in his book 'The Wealth of Nations'.
  • Invisible hand: It is an unobservable market force that helps the demand and supply of goods in a free market to reach equilibrium automatically
  • Principle: An economy can work well in a free market scenario where everyone will work for his/her own interest


  1. Dividend distribution tax
  • Dividend:
  • It is a return given by a company to its shareholders out of the profits earned by the company in a particular year.
  • They are usually given in proportion to the number of shares owned.
  • Dividend distribution tax: It is imposed by the Indian Government on Indian companies according to the dividend paid to a company’s investors.


  • Prelims Practice Questions
  1. Consider the following pairs:

Martial art             State

  1. Gatka            Punjab
  2. Silambam      Kerala
  3. Thang-ta       Manipur

Select which of the above pairs are correctly matched?

  • 1 only
  • 1 and 2 only
  • 3 only
  • 1,2 and 3


  1. In which of the following categories Green bonds can be invested?
  2. Renewable energy
  3. Energy efficiency
  4. Biodiversity conservation

Select which of the above is/are correct?

  • 1 and 2 only
  • 2 and 3 only
  • 1 only
  • 1,2 and 3

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