Morning Brief: Government Sees Economic Revival By June; Start-Up Fund Overhaul; Amazon Told To Behave

A bank staff member counts Indian 500 rupee notes to give to customers. (INDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP/Getty Images) 

Good Morning, Swarajya Readers! Here's What You Need To Know Today.

Government Sees Economic Revival By June: A top official overseeing the implementation of the demonetisation scheme said the Narendra Modi government expects the economy to overcome the effects of note ban and take the path to revival by June 2017. The government believes that it has “crossed the hump” with more than Rs 10 lakh crore of new money pumped into the market and bank withdrawals already matching the money deposited each day.

New Push To Overhaul Rs 10,000 Crore Start-Up Fund: In a bid to assist innovative start-ups through their journey to becoming full-fledged business entities, the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion is set to overhaul its Rs 10,000 crore start-up funding scheme by allowing venture capital funds to invest half of the corpus in start-ups and the rest of it in firms at a more mature stage to reduce capital risk.

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France Hails Modi’s Demonetisation Drive: French Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Development Jean-Marc Ayrault termed India’s demonetisation drive as a “bold” decision, which he said “shows how determined” Prime Minister Narendra Modi is to combat tax evasion, corruption and black money. He hailed the “significant reforms” undertaken by Modi to attract foreign investments.

Army Chief Asks Jawans To Raise Concerns Directly To Him: Army Chief General Bipin Rawat on Sunday said jawans who take to social media to express their complaints could be punished as their act lowers the morale of those guarding the frontiers of the country. In another development, Defence Ministry is working on to put a new mechanism in place to resolve the issues raised by some of the soldiers, sources said.

Amazon Told To Behave: Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das on Sunday asked Amazon to desist from being flippant about Indian symbols and icons, cautioning it that “indifference will be at your own peril”. “Amazon, better behave,” he warned. Last week, after a strong protest by India over Amazon selling doormats depicting Indian flag, the e-retail giant removed the offensive article from its Canadian website.

Government Planning Fresh Norms To Curb Tax Terrorism: The government is looking to lay down norms for tax officers, including a threshold below which scrutiny will not ordinarily be initiated. This is in a bid to curb possible harassment of taxpayers during investigations into bank deposits post-demonetisation.

Reservations For Female Students Proposed At IITs: Reservation for female students at Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) could soon become a reality. A committee formed to increase the enrolment of girl students to the premier IITs has recommended reservation for female students to rectify the problem. According to sources the panel has suggested creating up to 20 per cent supernumerary seats for female students out of the total number of seats.

India Incomplete Without Sindh, Says Advani: Senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader L K Advani on Sunday lamented the loss of Sindh and its capital Karachi to Pakistan, saying India appeared "incomplete" without the province. "I was very active in the RSS during my childhood days in Sindh. It's a matter of dismay. I believe India appears incomplete without Sindh," Advani said. The veteran leader also called for increased representation of women in the RSS.

US Slams China For Blocking India’s Entry Into NSG: Just a week before the change of guards in the US, the outgoing Barack Obama Administration has hit out at China for blocking India's entry into the elite Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG). "Clearly there is one outlier that needs to be addressed and that is China," Nisha Desai Biswal, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, said.

MUST READ OP-EDS

BHIM: Keeping Things Simple: Given that BHIM targets first-time digital payment users, the simplicity of the design is its standout feature. It does what it aims to do, and keeps things simple. For a technology product, that’s a refreshing approach to take.

Union Budget: Good Economics, Good Politics, Or Bit Of Both? It is very likely that the Modi-Jaitley combine will accelerate the massive re-plumbing and rebalancing exercise between India and Bharat.

Finance Ministry, Reserve Bank And Autonomy: The debate on RBI’s autonomy is as old as the central bank itself. What exactly has happened this time? Why is there so much noise? An analysis.

Reconsidering The 4 Per Cent Inflation Target: Unlike the usual taxes and subsidies, the proposed tax subsidy for macroeconomic stabilisation can be, by an amendment in the Constitution, run by an independent authority; this avoids political pressures.

SWARAJYA SPECIAL

Inside The Indian Army Kitchen: Cooking Up A Perfect Storm For The Soldier: As India marks the Army Day today (15 January), here is the inside story of how the soldiers are served up a culinary diversity day in and day out.

We hope you enjoyed reading our morning brief. Have a great day ahead!

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