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RBI governor Shaktikanta Das is Asia Pacific central banker of the year

Nominating Das, the magazine said India's banks have faced a series of challenges, from non-performing loans to issues around fraud Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das has been named the Central Banker of the Year, Asia-Pacific 2020, by the Banker magazine, a unit of Financial Times (FT). The award is given to central bankers who have “best managed to stimulate growth and stabilise their economy.” Jorgovanka Tabakovi, National Bank of Serbia, was adjudged the winner as the Global Central Banker of the Year. The awards were announced in an editorial of the Banker magazine on January 2. Nominating Das, the magazine said India’s banks have faced a series of challenges, from non-performing loans to issues around fraud. Repeated economic slumps saw the central bank cut interest rates five times during 2019, and it was open to cutting them again, if necessary. “Faced with these challenges, Shaktikanta Das has taken steps to bring banking in India up to standard via a re…

Budget 2020: In a first, defence gets more for pension, less for salaries

Army planners are increasingly worried about this drain on funds that could otherwise go towards equipment modernisation For the first time ever, the defence budget for 2020-21 allocates more money towards pensions for retired Army soldiers than for salaries for soldiers still in the standing Army. Scrutiny of the defence budget reveals that Rs 111,294 crore has been allocated for Army salaries, including civilian employees. The Rs 113,278-crore allocated for Army pensions surpasses that. There are slightly under 1.3 million soldiers serving in the Army, including officers. Meanwhile, 2.06 million individuals, including Army widows, are drawing pensions, according to the defence ministry, in answer to a parliamentary question in November 2016. The pension budget has steadily risen since the grant of One Rank, One Pension (OROP) in 2015-16. That year, it was Rs 60,000 crore for the entire military. For 2020-21, it will stand at Rs 1.33 trillion. Army planners are increasingly worried a…

Top 10 biz headlines: GST rates for 5-star hotels, oil crisis, and more

From rationalising GST rates for 5-star hotels to FDI in coal mining, here are the top 10 business headlines on Wednesday GST Council may rationalise rates for five-star hotels in Friday meeting The Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council is likely rationalise rates for five-star hotels in its meeting on Friday, holding out hopes for a boost to the tourism industry. The fitment panel, comprising Central and state officials, recommended a rate cut for outdoor catering and rate rationalisation for match sticks in its final agenda circulated to the council members. Rail coach making gets a hand from robots; MCF beats expectations In 2018-19, when Modern Coach Factory (MCF) at Raebareli manufactured about 1,500 rail coaches against a capacity of a mere 1,000, it surprised many. Apart from its human workforce, 44 robots are also being credited for this stupendous success. Robots are now being used increasingly in the integrated-shell assembly line and robotic bogie-fabrication line. Bain, TP…