Goaltide Daily Current Affairs 2021

Aug 24, 2021

Current Affair 1:
India Withdraws Retrospective Tax


The Taxation Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2021 ("2021 amendment") passed by the Lok Sabha will undo the retrospective taxation introduced by the Finance Act, 2012 ("2012 amendment").

  1. The 2012 amendment had provided for retrospective taxation of income arising from the sale of interest in an overseas entity that derived, directly or indirectly, its value substantially from assets located in India.
  2.  An entity was deemed to derive its value "substantially" from assets located in India if the value of such Indian assets exceeded ten crore rupees and represented at least fifty per cent. of the value of all the assets owned by the overseas entity

The 2012 amendment deemed the above clarification to have been in effect from the promulgation of the Income Tax Act on April 1, 1962. This meant that all transactions involving a transfer of shares or interest in foreign entities which derived substantial value from the Indian assets would be subject to capital gains tax in India, and interest amounts would be levied for delay in payments from the time the tax became due. This enabled Indian revenue to raise tax demands on all transactions that been consummated any time in the 50 years prior to the 2012 amendment.

The 2021 amendment finally corrects the wrongs of the 2012 amendment by removing its retrospective effect. It provides that no tax demand will be raised in future based on the 2012 amendment for any overseas transfer of shares or interest undertaken prior to the date of the 2012 amendment, i.e., May 28, 2012.

It provides that all tax demand notices based on the 2012 amendment shall be nullified if the taxpayer agrees to withdraw all legal proceedings challenging such notices in India or overseas, and furnishes an undertaking waiving its rights to pursue any such remedies or claims against the Government in India or overseas.

Retrospective taxation, consequent demands, entirely avoidable domestic litigation and international arbitration has been a cause of severe criticism and embarrassment to the Government.

Current Affair 2:
Latest data of renewable energy installations



Current Affair 3:
Over a fifth of India’s land area (21.06 per cent) is facing drought-like conditions

Source Link

Over a fifth of India’s land area (21.06 per cent) is facing drought-like conditions, according to recent data released by Drought Early Warning System (DEWS), a real-time drought-monitoring platform.

This is 62 per cent more than the area under drought during the same period last year, which was 7.86 per cent.

The 21.06 per cent area is under different degrees of drought — ranging from abnormally dry to exceptionally dry. While 1.63 per cent area and 1.73 per cent land is under ‘extreme dry’ and ‘exceptional dry’ conditions, 2.17 per cent is under ‘severe’ dry conditions. As much as 8.15 per cent is under ‘moderate’ dry conditions.

Around 7.38 per cent land is ‘abnormally’ dry, according to the latest data released August 16, 2021.

Several north, central and eastern states have been witnessing dry conditions of late. Rajasthan, Gujarat, Odisha and some north-eastern states like Nagaland are under severe to exceptional drought like conditions, according to estimates based on the last two months’ rainfall patterns.

Uneven distribution and failed monsoon are among the major drivers behind the current situation.

Odisha is staring at a drought in several districts, according to the estimates based on soil moisture index in the last one month.

Current Affair 4:
Ubharte Sitaare Fund’


After just 3 days from announcement of RoDTEP scheme for exporters, Finance Minister Launched “Ubharte Sitaare Fund” on 21 August 2021. Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday, addressing the launch of the ‘Ubharte Sitaare Fund’.

The Ubharte Sitaare Programme (USP) identifies Indian companies that are future champions with good export potential. An identified company should have potential advantages by way of technology, product or process. It can be supported even if it is currently underperforming or may be unable to tap its latent potential to grow. The Programme diagnoses such challenges and provides support through a mix of structured support covering equity, debt and technical assistance.

Nature of assistance

The Bank can support eligible companies by both financial and advisory services through:

a) Support by way of equity / equity-like instruments.

b) Debt (funded / non-funded): Term loans for modernisation, technology / capacity upgradation, R&D and balancing of production facilities by investment in activities such as:

  1. Machinery and equipment;
  2. Tools, jigs and fixtures;
  3. Testing / quality control equipment;
  4. Land and building.

c) Technical Assistance (TA) for product adaptation and improvement, cost of certifications, training expenses, market development activities including overseas travel for product/market development, studies relating to sectors, markets, regulations, Techno Economic Viability (TEV) study, etc.

Ubharte Sitaare fund is a type of Alternative investment fund.

Current Affair 5:
National monetized Pipeline Scheme


Asset monetisation – The Union Budget has laid out the importance of “monetising operating public infrastructure assets for new infrastructure construction”. Towards this, the budget provided for preparing a “National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP)” of potential brownfield infrastructure assets and an “Asset Monetisation dashboard” for tracking the progress and to provide visibility to investors.

Towards this objective, National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog has initiated an exercise for creation of National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP).

Creation of National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP) is Government of India’s pioneering initiative to establish a medium-term pipeline along with a roadmap for “monetisation ready” assets.

The total indicative value of NMP for Core Assets of Central Government has been estimated at Rs 6.0 lakh crore over the 4-year period, FY22-25.

A bottom-up approach has been adopted wherein the existing core infrastructure asset base managed under central sector agencies was identified and mapped.

The core infrastructure assets covered include roads, ports, airports, telecom, railways, warehousing, energy pipelines, power generation, power transmission, hospitality and sports stadiums.

Assets which are central to the business objectives of a public entity/ statutory body/ Government body and/or are being utilised for delivering infrastructure services to public/ users have been categorised as Core Assets for the purposes of monetisation.

Monetization through disinvestment and monetization of non-core assets (such as land, building, and pure play real estate assets) have not been included in the NMP.

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