Top headlines: GDP set for worst drop, US rejects India's digital tax

India's GDP to shrink 7.7% 

India’s economy is set for its biggest annual contraction in records going back to 1952 as the rapid spread of coronavirus cases and measures to contain them hurt businesses and households. Gross domestic product will shrink 7.7% in the financial year ending March 2021, the statistics ministry said in its first advance estimate published on Thursday. That’s steeper than a 7.5% drop forecast by the Reserve Bank of India, as well as economists surveyed by Bloomberg and other agencies. Read here

US backs action against India's equalisation levy

The US has held that India’s 2 per cent digital tax on technology majors is unreasonable, burdensome and discriminatory against American companies like Amazon, Google, and Facebook and inconsistent with international tax principles. The US Trade Representative (USTR) office has noted that India's digital services tax (DST) or equalisation levy was 'actionable' under Section 301 of the Trade Act. Read here

Pro-Trump mob attacks US Capitol, lawmakers return to certify Biden win

A violent mob loyal to President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday and forced lawmakers into hiding, in a stunning attempt to overturn America’s presidential election, undercut the nation’s democracy and keep Democrat Joe Biden from replacing Trump in the White House. Read here

SC asks Centre if protesting farmers are protected against Covid

Expressing serious concern over the large gathering of farmers protesting against the new farm laws at different borders of the national capital, the Supreme Court on Thursday asked the Government of India if those agitating are protected against Covid-19. Read here

Modi flags off world's first double stack long-haul container train

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday flagged off the world's first double stack long-haul container train on the 306km-long Rewari-Madar section of the Western Dedicated Freight Corridor (WDFC). Read here

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