• The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has announced the extension of the off-grid and decentralised solar photovoltaic (PV) applications programme phase-III till 31 March, 2021. The Ministry added that during the extended period, the sanction of new projects under the Scheme will be available only in the northeastern region.
  • The Centre is yet to announce new economic growth and budgetary estimates for 2020-21 in light of the Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting nationwide lockdown. However, the Finance Ministry is internally projecting FY21 GDP growth to be around 2-3%, down from the 6-6.5% given in the 2019-20 Economic Survey.
  • Industry body FICCI has suggested various measures like infrastructure status to the steel industry, zero duty on critical raw materials, and another three-month moratorium to revive the sector, which has been impacted by the lockdown.
  • India’s solar and gas-fired electricity generation rose in April even as overall power demand fell at the steepest monthly rate in at least thirteen years, a Reuters analysis of provisional government data showed.
  • Solar-powered electricity generation rose 16.9%, accounting for a record 5.6% of the country’s total output, while gas-fired power output was 13.7% higher, an analysis of daily load despatch data from state-run power operator POSOCO showed. However, wind-powered electricity generation fell 11.4%.
  • The Prime Minister asked coal and mines ministries to roll out the next wave of reforms for attracting big-ticket investments, domestic processing of minerals and substituting imported thermal coal with inventory of domestic output for building self-reliance in these areas.