ALL News Headlines 2020 February 16TH February 15, 2020

India rejected the UN:

India on Sunday rejected UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ offer to mediate on the Kashmir issue and said the only issue to be addressed is the vacation of territories illegally occupied by Pakistan. Guterres made the offer to mediate while addressing a news conference in Islamabad after his meeting with Pakistan’s foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi. He also said it is important for India and Pakistan to de-escalate “militarily and verbally” and exercise “maximum restraint”.

PM to CM: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday evening congratulated Arvind Kejriwal for taking oath earlier in the day as Delhi chief minister. “I congratulate Shri @ArvindKejriwal on taking oath as Delhi’s CM earlier today. Best wishes to him for a fruitful tenure,” the PM tweeted.

RSS on Divorce:

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat on Sunday said the cases of divorce are found more in “educated and affluent” families nowadays as education and affluence bring arrogance along, which results in families falling apart. He also said that there is no alternative to a Hindu society in India.

Tax exemption: The idea behind introducing second alternative tax slabs sans exemptions is to take the country towards “a simplified, exemption-free and reduced rate of tax regime”, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Sunday. She, however, added that there was no timeframe set by the government to remove all exemptions.

Modi on CAA: Amidst the ongoing nationwide protest against the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), Prime Minister Narendra Modi Sunday reiterated that his government stands by the decision “despite all pressure”. “For years, India had been waiting for decisions like repealing Article 370 and the introduction of CAA. These decisions were necessary in the interest of the country. Despite all the pressure, we stood our ground over these decisions and will remain so,” Modi said while addressing a public meeting in Varanasi.

RS seat: The opposition strength in Rajya Sabha is set to reduce further as the Congress is expected to lose some of its seats to fill up 68 vacancies. According to sources, the Congress could lose around nine of its 19 seats that are falling vacant due to its reduced strength in some states.

Trillion Dream: The government’s Rs 2.1 trillion sell-off target is achievable with half of this amount expected to be met through the spill-over deals of Air India, BPCL and Concor and the remaining Rs 90,000 crore through just 6-7 per cent stake dilution in state life insurer LIC, Chief Economic Advisor K.V. Subramanian has said amid questions being raised over meeting such a huge amount when the current fiscal disinvestment revenue target was lowered by 40 per cent.

Budgeting: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Sunday said the 2020-21 union budget was prepared keeping the FRBM (Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management) in mind even as she maintained she would be remembered for presenting the “longest prepared budget” than for “longest speech” on it.

Money to EXIM Bank: The government has decided to pump Rs 1,300 crore into state-owned Export-Import Bank of India (Exim Bank) to fund its business growth. Last year, the government doubled its authorised capital from Rs 10,000 crore to Rs 20,000 crore. “The (Rs 1,300 crore) provision is for Exim Bank as equity support/ subscription to increase the paid up capital of the bank to the level of its authorized capital,” as per the Budget documents presented in Parliament earlier this month.