- Jains have highest percentage of literates: Census 2011
- Cabinet approves grant of Permanent Residency Status to Foreign Investors
- India jumps 19 places in Logistics Performance Index
Bilateral & International Relations
- Cabinet approves creation of a Project Development Fund
- Canada to apply to join China-backed AIIB
Defence & Security Issues
- Cabinet apprised of MoU between CERT-In India and CERT-UK
Key Facts for Prelims
- Comic Book on Swachh Bharat Mission
- U.N. Women’s advocate for Gender Equality
Jains have highest percentage of literates: Census 2011
The government has recently released the latest Census 2011 data released on ‘education level by religious community for age 7 and above”.
- The census has taken those between 0 and 6 years as illiterate.
Key analysis of the data:
As per the data,
- Muslims have the highest number of illiterates — nearly 43% of their population.
- Among Muslims, just 2.76 percent are educated till graduation level or above.
- Jains have the highest number of literates among India’s religious communities with over 86% of them educated.
- Jains have just 13.57% illiterates aged seven and above among all communities.
- Jains have the highest percentage of educated members who are graduates and above.
The overall literacy rates among all communities have gone up since 2001. Below table shows the rise in literacy levels of various religious communities.
[Ref: The Hindu]
Cabinet approves grant of Permanent Residency Status to Foreign Investors
The Union Cabinet has approved the scheme for grant of Permanent Residency Status (PRS) to foreign investors subject to the relevant conditions as specified in the FDI Policy notified by the Government from time to time.
Objectives of the scheme:
- The scheme is expected to encourage foreign investment in India and facilitate Make in India Programme.
Key features of the programme:
Under the Scheme, suitable provisions will be incorporated in the Visa Manual to provide for the grant of PRS to foreign investors.
- The PRS will be granted for a period of 10 years with multiple entry. This can be reviewed for another 10 years if the PRS holder has not come to adverse notice.
- The scheme will be applicable only to foreign investors fulfilling the prescribed eligibility conditions, his/her spouse and dependents.
- In order to avail this scheme, the foreign investor will have to invest a minimum of Rs. 10 crores to be brought within 18 months or Rs.25 crores to be brought within 36 months.
- Further, the foreign investment should result in generating employment to at least 20 resident Indians every financial year.
Multiple entry visa:
- PRS will serve as a multiple entry visa without any stay stipulation and PRS holders will be exempted from the registration requirements.
- PRS holders will be allowed to purchase one residential property for dwelling purpose.
- The spouse/ dependents of the PRS holder will be allowed to take up employment in private sector (in relaxation to salary stipulations for Employment Visa) and undertake studies in India.
India jumps 19 places in Logistics Performance Index
The World Bank has recently released a Logistics Performance Index (LPI) 2016 report titled “Connecting to Complete 2016”.
India’s performance- Highlights of the report:
- India has now been ranked 35 amongst 160 countries compared to rank of 54 in LPI 2014. This is a jump of 19 places.
- In terms of the six-components of the LPI i.e. Customs, Infrastructure, International Shipments, Logistics Quality and Competence, Tracking and Tracing, and Timeliness, India’s ranking is 38, 36, 39, 32, 33 and 42 respectively.
- Improvement in India’s rank in Logistics Performance Index adequately establishes steady performance in our competitiveness in manufacturing and trade that also acts as one of the growth driver of Make in India Programme.
About the report- Key facts:
- The Logistics Performance Index Report is published by World Bank every two years.
- The LPI is an interactive benchmarking tool created to help countries identify the challenges and opportunities they face in their performance on trade logistics and what they can do to improve their performance.
- The LPI is based on a worldwide survey of stakeholders on the ground providing feedback on the logistics “friendliness” of the countries in which they operate and those with which they trade.
- They combine in-depth knowledge of the countries in which they operate with informed qualitative assessments of other countries where they trade and have experience of global logistics environment.
Bilateral & International Relations
Cabinet approves creation of a Project Development Fund
The Union Cabinet has given its approval to create a Project Development Fund (PDF).
- The project is aimed to catalyse Indian economic presence in the Cambodia, Laos Myanmar and Vietnam.
- It will be set up with a corpus of Rs 500 Crore.
- The PDF shall be housed in Department of Commerce and operated through the EXIM Bank.
- The PDF shall be governed by an Inter-Ministerial Committee under the chairpersonship of the Commerce Secretary.
Advantages of the PDF:
- India will have the advantage in the regional value chain by securing a dedicated market for domestic raw materials and intermediate goods on a long term basis.
- CLMV countries namely Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam have a unique position in the regional value chains and offer a gateway for market access to China/EU and other markets due to various trade agreements.
- While opportunities are a plenty in CLMV region, Indian entrepreneurs’ endeavours in these countries have, thus far, been limited due to limited information, infrastructure and other contingent risks. The PDF shall benefit India’s industrial community for business expansion, and to maintain cost competitive supply chains, besides integrating with global production networks.
Canada to apply to join China-backed AIIB
Canada will apply to join the China-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.
- In this regard, it will submit its application to join the AIIB by the end of September 2016.
The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is an international financial institution that aims to support the building of infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region.
- It has 57 member states.
- It was proposed as an initiative by the government of China.
- It was founded in October, 2014, and will have its headquarters in Beijing.
- Its goals are also to boost economic development in the region, create wealth, prove infrastructure, and promote regional cooperation and partnership.
- The value of AIIB’s authorized capital amounts to $100 billion, with almost $30 billion invested by China.
- The bank expects to lend $10 billion to $15 billion a year for the first five years of its operations, beginning in the second quarter of 2016.
Defence & Security Issues
Cabinet apprised of MoU between CERT-In India and CERT-UK
The Union Cabinet has apprised the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) and Ministry of Cabinet Office, UK (as represented by CERT-UK, a unit of the Cabinet Office on Cyber Security).
- The MoU intends to promote closer cooperation between India and the United Kingdom for exchange of knowledge and experience in detection, resolution and prevention of security-related incidents.
- With this MoU, participating countries can exchange technical information on Cyber attacks, response to cyber security incidents and find solutions to counter the cyber attacks.
- They can also exchange information on prevalent cyber security policies and best practices.
- This MoU helps to strengthen cyber space of both countries, capacity building and improving relationship between them.
- Earlier CERT-In signed MoUs with counterpart/similar organizations in about seven countries – Korea, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, Japan and Uzbekistan.
- Ministry of External Affairs has also signed MoU with Cyber Security as one of the areas of cooperation with Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
About the CERT-In:
CERT-In is nodal government agency that deals with cyber security threats like hacking and phishing in India.
- It is nodal department under the aegis of Union Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.
- According to the provisions of the Information Technology Amendment Act 2008, CERT-In is responsible for overseeing administration of the Act.
Objectives of the CERT-In:
Its objectives are to:
- Protect Indian cyberspace and software infrastructure against destructive and hacking activities.
- Strengthen security-related defence of the Indian Internet domain. Issue guidelines, vulnerability notes, advisories, and whitepapers regarding to information security practices, prevention, procedures, response and reporting of cyber security incidents.
Key Facts for Prelims
Comic Book on Swachh Bharat Mission
The Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) signed a Memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Amar Chitra Katha to publish and distribute a special edition of the comic book, focusing on Swachh Bharat Mission.
The 32-page comic book will carry messages pertaining to sanitation and solid waste components of Swachh Bharat Mission.
U.N. Women’s advocate for Gender Equality
Noted filmmaker and actor Rajinikanth’s daughter Aishwaryaa Dhanush was appointed United Nations Women’s Advocate for Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in India.
Aishwaryaa will help raise awareness of U.N. Women’s core message of gender equality and women’s empowerment across India, boosting the organisation’s efforts to close the gender gap and achieve a more equal world — a Planet 50-50, by the year 2030.
Ms. Aishwaryaa joins other celebrities like actor-director Farhan Akhtar, tennis star Sania Mirza, British actor Emma Watson, Hollywood stars Nicole Kidman and Anne Hathaway and Princess Bajrakitiyabha Mahidol of Thailand “who have joined hands with U.N. Women to work for gender equality and the empowerment of women.