Goaltide Daily Current Affairs 2021

Sep 15, 2021

Current Affair 1:
FDI into India increases by 25% in 2020-21


In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, we look at trends in FDI for the last two years and analyse if there is any impact of the pandemic.

FDI inflow into India during 2020-21 increased by around 25% compared to 2019-20.  In 2020-21, the total value of FDI received was Rs. 4.42 lakh crores while in 2019-20 it was Rs. 3.53 lakh crores. The growth rate recorded in 2020-21 is higher than that of 2019-20 which was 14%. However, the increase in FDI during 2020-21 compared to 2019-20 was not uniform across the year.

The FDI inflow from Singapore which is the highest in recent years increased by 25% during 2020-21 compared to 2019-20. Further, the USA stands next only to Singapore in 2020-21 as the top source country for FDI inflow.

The increase in FDI from the USA & Singapore compensated for the fall in FDI from other major FDI sources such as – Mauritius, Netherlands, Japan, Cayman Islands, etc.

Top 5:

Computer (Hardware & Software) & Construction sectors are the key contributors to increased FDI in 2020-21

Gujarat, Maharashtra & Karnataka account for more than 75% of the total FDI

Current Affair 2:
Tiles made from plastic and fly ash

Source Link

The combination of two kinds of wastes — single-use plastics with fly ash coal combustion product as a main constituent and coarse sand, fine sand, stone dust and lime as secondary constituents — can give minimum permeability and maximum compressive strength to the manufactured tiles.

Fly ash is available free of cost at the coal-fired thermal power plants' dump yards; tiles manufactured by using fly ash and plastics (plasto-ash tiles) are cost-effective compared to clay tiles. It helps save irrigable topsoil.

They also have several significant advantages over conventional tiles: They’re thinner and lighter, have superb heat-insulating properties (five times more than standard tiles) and are just as strong as their stony counterparts.

They’re also great at insulating noise. Each tile helps rid the world of discarded plastic and is cheaper and more fuel-efficient to manufacture than conventional tiles. It is also less energy-intensive.

Single-use plastics, often also referred to as disposable plastics, are commonly used for packaging. They include items intended to be used only once before they are thrown away or recycled.

These include, among other items, grocery bags, food packaging, bottles, straws, containers, cups and cutlery. Some studies suggest that plastic bags and styrofoam containers can take up to thousands of years to decompose. They contaminate soil and water and cause significant ingestion, choking and entanglement hazards to wildlife on land and in the ocean.

Current Affair 3:
Council may consider bringing Petrol, Diesel under GST

Petroleum goods like petrol, diesel, Air Turbine Fuel (ATF), natural gas and crude oil are not under GST. This DOES NOT MEAN that on these products GST is zero percent. What it means is, on these goods still 'Excise Duty' and 'VAT' is being imposed.

When GST was implemented in 2017, States did not allow these goods to be included in GST, because they were getting huge revenues (through VAT) on these goods. And they thought that if these petroleum goods will be included in GST, then they will lose the freedom to decide the tax rate on these goods.

So, at that time it was agreed that within 5 years i.e., by 2022, these petroleum goods will be included in GST.

There are certain other taxes like 'tax on electricity', 'Stamp Duty on land/real estate' are still out of GST, but as such (as per my information) no time has been specified to bring them under GST.

When these petroleum products are out of GST, it creates 'cascading effect of tax on tax' and increases the price. Let me explain with an example.

Suppose, we extracted crude oil whose value/price is Rs. 100/litre

Now if we refine (it’s basically processing) this crude oil then after refining, Excise Duty will be imposed.  Let us say Excise Duty is 30%. So, its price will become Rs. 100 + 30% of Rs. 100 = Rs. 130

Now let us say VAT is 25%.

So, VAT will be imposed on Rs. 130, which basically means VAT is being imposed on Excise Duty (Rs. 30) also, and this is called 'Cascading Effect of Tax on Tax'

So, the final price will become Rs. 162.5

But had this crude oil been under GST, and let us assume that GST rate (SGST + CGST) rate is 55% (equal to excise plus VAT), then the final price would have been Rs. 100 + Rs. 55 = Rs. 155

So, if these petroleum products were under GST, then the final price of petrol/diesel would have been Rs. 155, but since it is not under GST, so price is Rs. 162.5.


And this is only at the initial level. Means if this diesel/petrol is being used commercially for transportation then there are further taxes which further leads to more cascading effect of tax on tax because then the tax will be imposed further on Rs. 62.5.

Current Affair 4:
Madras HC: Interdicts state from printing photos of Chief Ministers on textbooks, schoolbags


In the case Oveyam Ranjan Vs. The State of Tamil Nadu and ors, the high court held that the practice of displaying photographs of Chief Ministers or other public functionaries on school bags, textbooks and stationery is abhorring and represents the misuse of public funds. Accordingly, the high court has directed that the practice must be discontinued with immediate effect.

The high court was hearing a writ petition, filed in the public interest, seeking directions to ensure that the unused stocks of textbooks, school bags and stationery used by children, and which carry the names and photographs of previous Chief Ministers should not be wasted since considerable public funds have been expended for the purpose.

Current Affair 5:
The report, A multi-billion-dollar opportunity: Repurposing agricultural support to transform food systems,


This report, launched by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) finds that 87% of current support to agricultural producers, approximately USD 540 billion per year, include measures that are often inefficient, inequitable, distort food prices, hurt people’s health, and degrade the environment.

Under a continuation of current trends, this support could reach USD 1.8 trillion by 2030. There is therefore a clear need for action at country, regional and global levels to phase out the most distortive, environmentally and socially harmful support, such as price incentives and coupled subsides, and redirecting it towards investments in public goods and services for agriculture, such as research and development and infrastructure, as well as decoupled fiscal subsidies.

Nothing more is needed.

Current Affair 6:
Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) report on wild species and recommendations

The report finds:

  1. 70% of hunted CMS terrestrial mammal species are used for wild meat consumption.
  2. Taking for domestic use is a larger concern than international trade for most CMS terrestrial species
  3. The taking of animals for wild meat consumption significantly increases the risk of future zoonotic diseases
  4. Most hunted species are used for wild meat consumption
  5. Demand for wild meat as a luxury item expected to increase with the growth of urbanization

Recommendations and implications for the future:


  1. Greater attention to domestic use and trade of CMS species is needed to address threats to conservation;
  2. National hunting legislation and regulations should be reviewed and updated as needed;
  3. Capacity for monitoring and enforcement should be examined and strengthened;
  4. The drivers contributing to the illegal or unsustainable use of wildlife for domestic consumption should be further identified and addressed;
  5. Understanding more about the spillover risks associated with wild meat use and trade, and the factors that might increase or decrease these risks, must be an immediate priority for wild meat research;
  6. Comparable and collatable data on hunting offtakes and species abundance should be gathered on all the species studied to enable more complete assessments of impacts of hunting for wildlife consumption and trade; and
  7. Additional international cooperation will be needed to address wild meat taking of migratory species, whose ranges span multiple countries.

About the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS)

An environmental treaty of the United Nations, the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) provides a global platform for the conservation and sustainable use of migratory animals and their habitats. This unique treaty brings governments and wildlife experts together to address the conservation needs of terrestrial, aquatic, and avian migratory species and their habitats around the world. Since the Convention's entry into force in 1979, its membership has grown steadily to include 132 Parties from Africa, Central and South America, Asia, Europe and Oceania.

India is a party to this Convention.

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