SPECIAL CATEGORY STATUS TO BIHAR
Why is in news?
The Chief Minister Nitish Kumar led Cabinet passed a resolution seeking the grant of special category status (SCS) to Bihar. The demand comes in the backdrop of the findings from the “Bihar Caste-based Survey, 2022”, which revealed that nearly one-third of Bihar’s population continues to live in poverty.
About Special category status (SCS):
- It is a classification granted by the Centre to assist the development of States that face geographical or socio-economic disadvantages.
- The SCS was introduced in 1969 on the recommendation of the fifth Finance Commission (FC).
- Five factors such as
- hilly and difficult terrain
- low population density and/or sizeable share of tribal population
- strategic location along international borders
- economic and infrastructural backwardness and
- non-viable nature of state finances, are considered before granting SCS.
- In 1969, Jammu & Kashmir, Assam and Nagaland were granted the SCS.
- Subsequently, eight more States including Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Sikkim, Tripura, Himachal Pradesh, and Uttarakhand were given the SCS by the erstwhile National Development Council.
- The Centre-State funding of centrally sponsored schemes is divided in the ratio of 90:10 for Special category status states.
- It is far more favourable than the 60:40 or 80:20 splits for the general category States. Besides, there are several other incentives available to the SCS States in the form of concession in customs and excise duties, income tax rates and corporate tax rates to attract investments to set up new industries etc.
JOINT VENTURE AGREEMENT TO ESTABLISH COMPOSITES MANUFACTURING AND DESIGN FACILITY IN TAMIL NADU DEFENCE CORRIDOR
- Merlinhawk Aerospace Pvt Ltd, a 100% Indian aerospace and defence engineering design and manufacturing company has signed a joint venture (JV) agreement with Vega Composites to establish a composites manufacturing and design facility in the defence corridor in Tamil Nadu for advanced composites material-based products.
- It aimed at tapping the growing market of India while developing design expertise and transferring manufacturing knowhow to India.
- The company will be targeting the upcoming hydrogen storage and fuel cell markets.
About Tamil Nadu Defence Corridor:
- Tamil Nadu Defence Industrial Corridor (TNDIC) comprises of Chennai, Tiruchirappalli, Coimbatore, Salem and Hosur.
- It was announced by the Government of India in 2019.
- Tamil Nadu Industrial Development Corporation (TIDCO) is the nodal agency to implement Defence Industrial Corridor.
MERGER OF TWO PROFIT-MAKING NON-BANKING FINANCIAL COMPANIES
- The State government has ordered the merger of two profit-making Non-Banking Financial Companies namely
- The Tamil Nadu Power Finance and Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited (TNPFC) and
- The Tamil Nadu Transport Development Finance Corporation Limited (TDFC)
PHASED INTRODUCTION OF BIOGAS BLENDING
- India will start blending compressed biogas with natural gas to boost domestic demand and cut reliance on natural gas imports.
- The mandatory phased introduction will start at 1% for use in automobiles and households from April 2025.
- The share of mandatory blending will then be increased to about 5% by 2028.
- The decision was announced by the National Biofuels Coordination Committee which is chaired by Petroleum Minister.
- India is one of the world’s largest importers of oil and gas.
- These steps are aimed at helping India achieve net zero emissions targets by 2070.
CONSTITUTION DAY 2023
- India celebrates Constitution Day or Samvidhan Divas on November 26.
- It was the day when India adopted its constitution in the year 1949.
- Earlier, this day was celebrated as Law Day but in 2015 the Indian government modified Law Day as Constitution Day.
- President Droupadi Murmu along with Union Law minister Arjun Ram Meghwal and the chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud unveiled a 7 ft tall statue of Dr BR Ambedkar on the Constitution Day.
GURU NANAK JAYANTI
- Guru Nanak Jayanti marks the birthday of the founder of Sikhism and the first of its nine gurus, Guru Nanak or Baba Nanak.
- Sikhs celebrate this day with a procession called Nagar Kirtan, which sees groups of people sing hymns and visit gurudwaras.
- His teachings laid the ground for the emergence of a distinct faith called Sikhism.
- Among his followers were both lower-caste Hindus and Muslim peasants.
- He was born on April 15, 1469.
- Guru Nanak Jayanti usually falls on the full moon day in the month of Kartik, according to the Nanakshahi calendar, falling this year on November 27.
- At the age of 30, he had a spiritual experience.
- He is said to have travelled as far as Sri Lanka, Baghdad and central Asia to spread his teachings.
- His last journey was to Mecca and Madina, the holiest sites in Islam, as he preached the Oneness of God.