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Daily News Digest:27 September 2020

DOMESTIC SYSTEMICALLY IMPORTANT INSURERS (D-SIIs) FOR 2020-21 BY THE IRDAI

Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has identified 3 companies, the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), The New India Assurance Co and the General Insurance Corporation of India as the Domestic Systemically Important Insurers (D-SIIs) for 2020-21.

Domestic Systemically Important Insurers (D-SIIs) are considered as insurers that are ‘too big or too important to fail’ (TBTF). These D-SIIs are of such a size that they are too big to fail but when they fail they would cause a significant disturbance in the domestic financial system.

EXPLAINED: THE CASE OF RETROSPECTIVE TAXATION BETWEEN INDIA AND VODAFONE

The Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA), an intergovernmental organization located in The Hague, Netherlands has given its verdict that India’s retrospective imposition of a tax on Vodafone Group was a breach of the Bilateral Investment Treaty with the Netherlands and the arbitration rules of United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL). 

Under the Income Tax Act of 1961, the Indian government for the first time demanded capital gains and to withhold tax from Vodafone. In 2014, Vodafone invoked the Bilateral Investment Treaty signed between India and the Netherlands in 1995.

“POSITIVE TO PAY” TO CHECK CHEQUES FROM JANUARY 2021 BY THE RBI

In order to check banking fraud, the Reserve Bank of India will introduce a “Positive Pay System”.  It is already in use in India and the ICICI bank has been following this procedure since 2016. Under this system, it becomes mandatory to reconfirm key details of cheques that need payments beyond Rs 50,000.

FRIDAYS FOR FUTURE MOVEMENT

“Fridays For Future Movement” was led by students and youth under the banner of Fridays For Future (FFF). They protested outside the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) asking for the scrapping of Draft Environment Impact Assessment, 2020 and the government to act against the climate crisis. The FFF movement was inspired by Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg.

SONIFICATION PROJECT OF NASA

NASA’s Chandra X-Ray Center (CXC) has uncovered a new ‘sonification’ project that transforms data from astronomical images into audio. A celestial concert of sorts has been created by the Chandra project by translating the same data into sound. Pitch and volume are used to refer to the brightness and position of a celestial object or phenomenon.

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