The Union Cabinet decided on Wednesday to increase the Dearness Allowance (or DA) that it pays its current employees and existing pensioners by 5 percentage points. Accordingly, 50 lakh central government employees and 65 lakh pensioners will henceforth receive 17% of their basic salary as DA instead of 12%. DA is provided by the government to its employees to cushion the impact of the rising cost of living. Inflation (or rate of increase in prices) eats away the buying power of money; hence the justification for DA. Read More
The CEO of the French engine manufacturer behind the Rafale fighter jet told Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday that India should provide an attractive business environment and not “terrorise us” with its tax and customs rules. He made the remarks while announcing that the company plans to invest nearly USD 150 million in the country. French multinational Safran, the manufacturer of the M88 engines fitted in the Rafale jets acquired by India, gave a presentation of its facility to the Defence Minister who took a tour of the assembly line of the company. Read More
The 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry has been jointly awarded to John B Goodenough of the US, Britain’s M Stanley Whittingham and Japan’s Akira Yoshino for the development of lithium-ion batteries, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences announced on Wednesday. The lithium-ion batteries have reshaped energy storage and transformed cars, mobile phones and many other devices in an increasingly portable and electronic world. The award was announced by Göran K Hansson, Secretary General of The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. Read More
Authorities in Afghanistan have announced the killing of Maulana Asim Umer, leader of al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS), in a joint US-Afghan raid on a Taliban compound in Musa Qala district of Helmand province on September 23. He was known to Indian security agencies as Sanaul Haq from Sambhal in Uttar Pradesh. He was appointed the head of AQIS by Al Qaeda chief Ayman Al Zawahiri in 2014. The Afghan National Directorate of Security (NDS) claimed Omar was Pakistani, and was killed along with several other Pakistani terrorists. Read More
Taking off from the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI’s) decision to cut the repo rate — the rate at which the RBI lends to commercial banks— the State Bank of India (SBI) on Thursday announced cuts in both the lending and deposit rates. Lending rate is the rate at which commercial banks lends to customers. Deposit rate is the rate of interest that you get on your savings bank and fixed deposits with the bank. On the lending side, the SBI announced that it would bring down MCLR (Marginal Cost of Funds based Lending Rate) by 10 basis points across all tenures. On the deposit front, the bank announced that it would cut the interest rate on savings bank deposits from 3.5 per cent to 3.25 per cent. Read More
An interview of Haryana politician and Jannayak Janata Party candidate Naina Singh Chautala by a young reporter has gone viral with many praising the boy’s interviewing skills. While the clip was originally posted on the boy’s YouTube page called Goldy Goyat, it gained traction after it was shared on Facebook. Viewed over 4 lakh times, the clip shows the young boy asking questions about the Jansamman rally organised by the party. The 2.07-second video begins with Goyat introducing Chautala to his viewers and exchanging pleasantries with her before asking the questions he had prepared. Read More
Improving on near perfection would be India’s aim while building on the small positives from a huge loss will be South Africa’s focus when the two mismatched sides clash in the second Test starting here from Thursday. Virat Kohli’s men ticked almost all the boxes during their 203-run win in the opening encounter in Visakhapatnam and they would like to maintain the same intensity in their bid to seal the series in Pune itself. It is difficult to improve upon a perfect show but trust Kohli to find a new challenge for his team in his pursuit of excellence. Read More
The new head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said Tuesday that the global economy was experiencing a “synchronised slowdown” with nearly 90 per cent of the world witnessing slower growth in 2019 including India.