Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday announced a Rs 1.1 lakh crore loan guarantee scheme for Covid-hit sectors. Out of the Rs 1.1 lakh crore, the healthcare sector will get Rs 50,000 crore, while the others will get Rs 60,000 crore.
“Total of Rs 1.1 lakh crore guarantees is being given for particularly Covid-affected sectors and in that health sector with a Rs 50,000 crore cover receives attention for scaling up medical infrastructure,” Sitharaman announced while addressing a press conference in New Delhi. The guarantee coverage for the projects, which are totally new will get up to 75 per cent coverage and projects which are on expansion will get 50 per cent coverage.
“This guarantee will last for 3 years and the interest rate is capped at 7.95 per cent,” the Finance Ministry added. Additionally, with an aim to provide further economic relief to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Centre on Monday expanded the financial support being provided under the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) by Rs 1.5 lakh crore.
ECLGS will now have a total outlay of Rs 4.5 lakh crore, up from the earlier Rs 3 lakh crore. “The overall cap of admissible guarantee has been raised from Rs 3 lakh crore to Rs 4.5 lakh crore,” Sitharaman said.
“Out of Rs 3 lakh crore announced earlier, Rs 2.69 lakh crore have already been disbursed through the ECLGS 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0,” she said.
Sitharaman also announced some measures including free tourist visas to the first five lakh tourists. She said financial support will be provided to more than 11,000 registered tourist guides and travel and tourism stakeholders
She said that under the new Loan Guarantee Scheme for Covid-affected sectors, working capital or personal loans will be provided to people in the tourism sector to discharge liabilities and restart businesses impacted due to the pandemic.
The scheme will cover 10,700 regional-level tourist guides recognised by Tourism Ministry and tourist guides recognised by the state governments and travel and tourism stakeholders (TTS) recognised by the ministry.
Loans will be provided with a 100 per cent guarantee up to the following limits—Rs 10,00,000 for TTS (per agency) and Rs 1,00,000 for tourist guides licenced at regional or state level. There will be no processing charges or prepayment charges and no additional collateral requirement. The scheme will be administered by the Tourism Ministry through NCGTC.
Sitharaman said the first five lakh tourists who come to India once international travel resumes will not have to pay visa fees. “This will benefit any tourist only once. The scheme is applicable till March 31, 2022, or will be closed after distribution of first 5 lakh visas,” she said. A total of 10.93 million foreign tourists visited India in 2019, spent US $ 30.098 billion on leisure and business.
The average daily stay for a foreign tourist in India is 21 days and average daily spending of a tourist in India is around $34 (Rs 2400).
WITH ANI INPUTS
The Daily Guardian is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@thedailyguardian) and stay updated with the latest headlines.
For the latest news Download The Daily Guardian App.
BILL AND MELINDA GATES ARE OFFICIALLY DIVORCED
WASHINGTON: The divorce between Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates has been finalised. As per CNN report, filing with the King County Superior Court in Washington made the move official. Melinda French Gates filed the petition for divorce in King County, Washington.
Bill and Melinda announced in May that they would be ending their marriage after 27 years, saying, “we no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives.”
However, the duo said they will continue to work together at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Meanwhile, the foundation said last month that the organisation was planning a two-year trial period to see if the pair could continue working together effectively.
“If after two years either decide they cannot continue to work together as co-chairs, French Gates will resign her position as co-chair and trustee,” CEO Mark Suzman said. In the weeks following the initial announcement of the divorce, Bill faced allegations of questionable workplace conduct in the early years at Microsoft.
BLINKEN ANNOUNCES US REFUGEE ADMISSIONS PROGRAMME FOR AFGHAN NATIONALS
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced a US refugee admissions programme Priority 2 designation for Afghan nationals on Monday. The US is weeks away from completing military withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Blinken, during a press briefing, said, “The State Department is announcing a new resettlement program for Afghans who assisted the United States, but who do not qualify for special immigrant visas. We’ve created a Priority-2 or P-2 designation, granting access to the US refugee admissions program for many of these Afghans and their family members.”
He said that even as the US forces withdraw from Afghanistan, the US will remain deeply engaged with the country.
“We’ll continue to work toward an Afghanistan, where all Afghans can live in safety and security, and we will continue our support for Afghan institutions, and for the gains that the Afghan people have made over the past 20 years,” said Blinken.
“We will keep engaging intensely in diplomacy to advance negotiations between the Afghan government, the Taliban, with the goal of a political solution, which we believe is the only path to lasting peace. And we’ll keep working closely with countries in the region, which all have a stake in a stable, peaceful, democratic Afghanistan,” he stated.
Blinken said that Afghans who work with the United States or the International Security Assistance Force at some point since 2001 are facing acute fears of persecution or retribution that will likely grow as coalition forces leave the country.
He further added that “We have a special report the responsibility to these individuals. They stood with us. We will stand with them. Over the past 13 years, the State Department has issued more than 73,000 Special Immigrant Visas to eligible Afghans who have helped the United States, and also to their families. We’ll continue to welcome Afghan immigrants and refugees as our neighbours in gratitude for helping us, despite the danger. We won’t forget it.”
AFGHAN PRESIDENT GHANI’S TIME HAS RUN OUT: TALIBAN
KABUL: Taliban said that Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani’s “time has run out” on Monday. Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid, while reacting to Ghani’s remark that the ongoing war is an external intrigue imposed on the people of Afghanistan, accused the President of lying and spreading false information.
A tweet by Mujahid said that his (Ghani’s) time is over and the announcement of warfare will not survive him. “Speech by @ashrafghani is nonsense, an attempt to control his fears & dire situation. Nation has decided to pursue & bring national traitors to justice. Declarations of war, accusations & lies cannot prolong Ghani’s life, his time has run out, God willing,” said Mujahid.
INDIA WANTS PEACEFUL RELATIONS, ONUS IS ON PAKISTAN: TIRUMURTI
WASHINGTON: India’s Permanent Representative to United Nations, T.S. Tirumurti said that India desires to have peaceful and normal relations with Pakistan but in an atmosphere free from terror.
The Indian Ambassador to the UN informed that issues between the two countries should be resolved in an atmosphere free from terror, hostility, and violence and the onus is on Pakistan to create such an environment. “Pakistan should take credible and verifiable action not to allow any territory under their control to be used for cross border terrorism against India,” said Tirumurti. He also informed that India wants to keep a spotlight on counter-terrorism.
US-China seek alignment of Afghan interests: Ned Price
US State Department spokesperson Ned Price has said that China’s interest in Afghanistan could be ‘an alignment of interest’ when it comes to what the US and China seek in Afghanistan.
The People’s Republic of China (PRC) interest in Afghanistan could be “an alignment of interest” when it comes to what the US and China seek in Afghanistan, said US State Department spokesperson Ned Price on Monday. “There’s an alignment of interest in at least some areas when it comes to what we seek, what China seeks and what the broader international community seeks in Afghanistan,” Price told ANI on being asked what is US’ assessment of meeting between Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Taliban delegation led by its Chief Negotiator Abdul Ghani Baradar.
Experts say thay although the US might once have fiercely resisted Chinese attempts to increase their influence inside Afghanistan, now Washington’s priority appears to keep away a civil war. Spokesperson Price also affirmed that is in no one’s interest to see Afghanistan descend into an all-out civil war. “It is in everyone’s interest to see a solution to the conflict that is just as durable as Afghan-led, and Afghan Owned,” he concluded.
AMID COVID PANDEMIC, PMGKY REDUCES WORRIES OF THE POOR: PM MODI
Gandhinagar: Annotsav Day was celebrated on Tuesday on the occasion of the completion of five years of the Rupani government, as part of which a state-level program was organized in Dahod district in which Prime Minister Narendra Modi had a virtual dialogue with the beneficiaries of the grain welfare scheme. He asked whether the beneficiaries of Dahod and Rajkot have any problem in taking up the scheme or not. Modi said in a dialogue with the beneficiaries that the poor would get free foodgrains till Diwali. Modi praised the performance of the Gujarat government.
Prime Minister’s Poor Welfare Food Scheme is being praised all over the world. More than Rs 2 crore is being spent by the government under this scheme. The aim is that not a single person in India goes to bed hungry. Under this scheme, ration cardholders are being given double the amount of foodgrains than before. The plan is to run till Diwali.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday addressed the beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana and said this scheme has reduced the worries of the poor and increased their confidence. Three and a half crore beneficiaries in Gujarat are getting the benefit of free foodgrains. “I commend the Gujarat government for this. Preference is given to workers from other parts of the country. Workers have benefited from this scheme. Gujarat is the first to offer the benefit of One Nation One Ration Card,” said the Prime Minister.
Opinion10 months ago
South Block’s mistakes will now be corrected by Army
Sports1 year ago
When a bodybuilder breaks Shoaib’s record
News1 year ago
PM Modi must take governance back from babus
Spiritually Speaking12 months ago
Spiritual beings having a human experience
News1 year ago
Chinese general ordered attack on Indian troops: US intel report
Sports1 year ago
West Indies avoid follow-on, England increase lead to 219
Legally Speaking1 year ago
Law relating to grant, rejection and cancellation of bail
Royally Speaking11 months ago
The young royal dedicated to the heritage of Jaipur