Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced number of schemes during his speech on the eve of the New Year.
For the poor: Two new schemes under PM Awaas Yojna. Home loans for poor and middle class people up to Rs 9 lakh will get 4% exemption on interest and 3% for up to Rs 12 lakh loans.
For farmers: Sixty days interest waiver for farm loans taken from from district co-operative banks and co-operative societies.
For senior citizens: 8% interest up to Rs 7.5 lakh deposit by senior citizens in banks.
For small businesses: Credit guarantee for micro small and medium enterprises to be raised to Rs 2 crore from current Rs 1 crore.
For women: Pregnant women across India will be given Rs 6,000 in their bank accounts to take care of initial medical needs.
For farmers: The government will convert 3 crore Kisan Credit cards to RUpay Credit cards.
For small businesses: Banks have been asked to raise cash credit limit for small businesses to 25% from 20%.
India and Pakistan recently exchanged for the 26th consecutive year the list of their nuclear installations under a bilateral agreement that prohibits them from attacking each other’s atomic facilities.
- The exchange was carried out under the Agreement on the Prohibition of Attack against Nuclear Installations between India and Pakistan.
- This is the 26th consecutive exchange of such list between the two countries, the first one having taken place on January 1, 1992.
An Indian-origin Saudi-based entrepreneur has been appointed Major General of Kyrgyzstan, a top position in the defence department of Kyrgyzstan..
Shaikh Rafik Mohammed, who hails from Kerala, was appointed Major General of Kyrgyzstan by Ali Mirza, Defence Minister of Kyrgyzstan at an official ceremony held in the country.
Mr Rafik holds Kyrgyzstan nationality conferred by its former President Kurmanbek Saliyevich Bakiyev whom he casually met while working in Iran.
Sikkim has become India’s first fully organic state by implementing organic practices on around 75,000 hectares of agricultural land.
- Around 75,000 hectares of agricultural land were gradually converted to certified organic land in accordance with guidelines laid down in National Programme for Organic Production.
- Organic cultivation is free of chemical pesticides and chemical fertilisers as it tries to strike a harmonious balance with a complex series of ecosystems.
- Sikkim was also accorded the status of the cleanest state in India by the National Sample Survey Office in September
Anil Baijal is the new Lt Governor of Delhi. Baijal is the 20th Lt Governor of Delhi.
He was appointed to the post by President Pranab Mukherjee last week. His appointment came after Najeeb Jung’s sudden resignation from the post.
India’s first transgender school opened in Kochi on Friday. The school, named Sahaj International, was inaugurated by transgender activist, writer and actor Kalki Subramaniam at Thrikkakara in Kerala’s Ernakulam district.
The school is headed by six transgenders and a woman and has 10 students.
Lionel Messi has won the Best Playmaker of 2016 award for his overall contribution to club and country by the International Federation of Football, History and Statistics.
- IFFHS started this award in 2006 and it has been completely dominated by La Liga players ever since.
- Zinedine Zidane, the current Real Madrid manager was the first recipient of this accolade back in 2006 followed by Kaka who won it the following year.
- This award is decided by votes from 56 countries from five different continents.
Ravaged by injuries, India’s star singles player Somdev Devvarman announced his retirement from professional tennis, bringing an abrupt end to what was once a promising career.
- The 31-year-old’s career was hampered by a recurring shoulder injury in 2012.
- He was conferred the Arjuna award — the country’s second highest sporting honour — in 2011.