- Nine more cities included under Smart City Mission
The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has brought nine more cities under the smart cities mission in the round four of the Smart city selection process. With this intake, the total number of cities gotes to 99. The government has not listed the 10th city as Shillong has not submitted its proposal. The nine cities selected are: Slvasa in Dadar and Nagar Haveli that topped the list, Erode (TN), Diu (Daman and Diu), Bihar-sharif(Bihar), Bareillly (UP), Itanagar (Arunachal Pradesh), Moradabad (UP), Saharanpur (UP) AND Kavaratti (Lakshadweep).
For the whole 99, cities, the expected investment to be mde is Rs 203979 crores.
The Smart Cities Mission is an urban renewal program of the government launched to create 100 smart cities across the country. PM Narendra Modi launched the program on June 25, 2015. The cities are selected from a Smart City Challenge Competition. So far 99 cities were selected.
- Make tax friendly regime for AIFs: Narayana Murthy Panel
SEBI appointed Narayana Murthy Panel on Alternative Investment Funds (AIFs) urged the government to create a tax friendly approach to attract AIFs. The Panel recommended suitable tax as well as regulatory framework for AIFs.
Alternative Investment Funds are a class of investment entities that are not covered under the usual SEBI regulatory framework for investment institutions. AIFs refers to any privately pooled investment fund – a trust or a company or a body corporate or an LLP (Limited Liability Partnership) which are not presently covered by any Regulation of RBI, SEBI, IRDA and PFRDA. They may be foreign or Indian.
A notable general feature of AIFs is that they are tailor made investment arrangements like Private Equities that aims to utilize investment opportunities. AIFs are thus private investment entities.
Thus, AIFs includes Private Equities, Venture Capital Fund, Hedge funds, Commodity funds, Debt Funds, infrastructure funds, etc. Most of these investment entities are owned by big corporate houses or wealthy individuals. Private Equities like Blackstone and KKR (Kohlberg Kravis Roberts) are examples for AIFs. Several multinational banks have also AIFs. Venture Capital Funds and Angel Investors are also categorized as AIFs.