Free Press Bulletin
Free Press Bulletin

Here are the top 5 news updates of May 5, 2021:

1. Supreme Court strikes down Maharashtra law granting quota to Marathas, terms it unconstitutional

The Supreme Court today struck down the Maharashtra law granting quota to Marathas in admissions and government jobs, terming it as "unconstitutional", and held there were no exceptional circumstances to breach the 50 per cent reservation cap set by the 1992 Mandal verdict. The top court also refused to refer the Mandal judgement to a larger bench for reconsideration, saying it has been upheld time and again by its various verdicts. A five-judge constitution bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan concurred on three major issues, framed during the hearing, and said the MC Gaikwad commission report which was the basis for the Maratha quota did not highlight any exceptional circumstances for grant of reservation to the community.

2. RBI Governor announces term liquidity facility of Rs 50,000 cr to boost emergency healthcare

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das announced on-tap special liquidity facility of Rs 50,000 crore to be made available to banks at repo rate with up to 3 year tenor to ramp up COVID related healthcare infrastructure. He has also announced another round of loan restructuring for MSMEs, small businesses and individuals with aggregate exposure of up to Rs 25 crore, who have not been beneficiaries of restructuring frameworks. The RBI will continue to monitor the situation, deploy tools at command to support businesses impacted by COVID, the Governor said.

3. Fresh curbs in West Bengal: Local train services suspended, banks to operate for limited hours

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today took stock of the COVID-19 situation in the state, shortly after her swearing-in ceremony, and announced fresh curbs to combat the spread of COVID-19, including suspension of local train services. Banerjee, following a high-level meeting with top officials, said that metro rail and state transport services will be curtailed by 50 per cent from Thursday, as part of the newly imposed set of restrictions. Banks will be operational from 10 am to 2 pm, and government offices have been told to make do with 50 per cent workforce, Banerjee said at the press meet.

4. 'Relying on PMO is useless': Subramanian Swamy urges Modi to 'delegate' war against COVID-19 to Nitin Gadkari

BJP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy today hit out at the Centre over its handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, urging Prime Minister Narendra Modi to hand over the "conduct of this war" to Union Minister Nitin Gadkari. Echoing recent reports, the lawmaker contended that a third wave that targeted children might soon create fresh panic in the country. "India will survive Coronavirus Pandemic as it did Islamic invaders and British Imperialists. We could face one more wave that targets children unless strict precautions now are taken. Modi should therefore delegate the conduct of this war to Gadkari," he tweeted.

5. Sensex rallies 424 points on RBI announcements; financial stocks shine

Market benchmark Sensex rallied 424 points today, led by gains in financial stocks after the RBI unveiled a slew of measures to support the economy facing strong headwinds amid peaking second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. The 30-share BSE index jumped 424.04 points or 0.88 per cent to close at 48,677.55. Similarly, the broader NSE Nifty surged 121.35 points or 0.84 per cent to 14,617.85.

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