Union Minister launches Sampoorna Bima Gram Yojana
The Union Minister for Communications, Manoj Sinha on 13 October 2017 launched the Sampoorna Bima Gram (SBG) Yojana, an initiative for expansion of client base of Postal Life Insurance.
During the launch, the Minister said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision to provide banking services through the postal network needs to be taken forward to provide affordable life insurance services to people living in rural areas of the country.
Under the Yojana, at least one village having a minimum of 100 households will be identified in each of the revenue districts of the country.
Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th Anniversary to be celebrated from 2 October 2019 to 2 October 2020
The Union Government on 12 October 2017 announced to observe the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi from 2 October 2019 to 2 October 2020. To commemorate the same, the Union Government constituted a National Committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
This Committee comprises Chief Ministers of all the states, representatives from across the political spectrum, Gandhians, thinkers and prominent people from different spheres of life.
The Committee will direct and approve policies, programmes, activities for the commemoration and will also supervise the implementation of the decisions taken from time to time.
Global Hunger Index 2017 released: India ranked 100th among 119
The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) on 12 October 2017 released the '2017 Global Hunger Index: The Inequalities of Hunger'. As per the Global hunger Index 2017, the global hunger levels have fallen more than a quarter since 2000.
This year, India ranks at low 100th position out of 119 countries on the Index, owing to the fact that one in every five children under age 5 has low weight for height.
At 31.4, India's GHI score is at the high end of the 'serious' category, and is one of the main factors pushing South Asia to the category of worst performing region this year, followed closely by Africa South of the Sahara.
US, Israel withdraw from UNESCO, accusing the cultural body of 'anti-Israel bias’
The United States and its ally Israel announced on 12 October 2017 that they were pulling out of the UN's culture and education body, UNESCO, accusing it of anti-Israel bias.
Speaking on the decision, the US State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said that the decision was not taken lightly and it reflects US concerns with mounting arrears at UNESCO, the need for fundamental reform in the organisation and continuing anti-Israel bias.
The decision comes as the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation is voting to choose a new director, intense balloting overshadowed by the agency’s funding troubles and divisions over Palestinian membership.
RBI introduces strict KYC guidelines for Prepaid Payment Instruments
RBI has announced a fresh guideline on the issuance and operation of PPI (Prepaid Payment Instruments). It has also has issued stricter Know Your Customer (KYC) norms for the users of prepaid instrument or mobile wallets.
With these guidelines to complete full KYC formalities, the mobile wallet user can now send-receive money between wallets of different companies and banks seamlessly through Unified Payments Interface (UPI).
The guidelines have come into effect from 12th October 2017 and the PPIs will have to comply with these norms on or before December 31, 2017.