1) Union Cabinet approved ordinance to amend Land Acquisition Act: The Union Cabinet on 29 December 2014 approved an ordinance to amend the contentious land acquisition act and ease restrictions including a "consent clause" which was seen as obstacle for power, highways, housing, defence and infrastructure projects and holding up the economy's growth potential. The ordinance seeks to waive the "consent clause" - the requirement to secure specific consent of owners of 70% -80% of land owners if acquisitions are meant for defence and defence production, rural infrastructure including electrification, housing for poor and affordable housing, industrial corridors and infrastructure projects including projects under Public-Private Partnership mode where ownership the land continues to be vested with the government.
2) Government to soon establish 'SMART Police' stations in each state: In line with prime minister Narendra Modi's vision of 'SMART Police', home minister Rajnath Singh on 29 December 2014 decided to establish one model 'SMART Police Station' in each state. Some suggested features of the SMART Police Station included basic amenities for visitors, waiting area, toilets, drinking water, receptionist whom the visitors can meet. The station will include rest room for constables, including separate room for women constables. PM had introduced the concept of SMART Police ( where S stands for sensitive and strict; M for modern with mobility; A for alert and accountable; R- for reliable and responsive; T for trained and techno-savvy) during the 49th Directors General/Inspectors General Annual Conference at Guwahati on November 30, 2014.
3) Delhi first city to achieve 100% enrolment in PMJDY: Delhi has become the first city to achieve 100 percent enrolment under Prime Minister Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY), according to a top Delhi government official. Bank accounts of more than 31.63 lakh families have been opened under the scheme in the national capital.
4) Government to set up Saffron Production & Export Development Agency: Government has approved setting up of the Specialized Agency under the Spices Board with the nomenclature of 'Saffron Production & Export Development Agency (SPEDA) to be headquartered at Srinagar (J&K) to plan and implement programmes for development and promotion of exports of quality saffron. The agency will be set up by the Spices Board in consultation with the Government of J&K as expeditiously as possible.
5) National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) reconstituted: The central government on 29 December 2014 reconstituted the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), a home ministry notification said. Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) director of health, safety and environment D.N. Sharma has been nominated as a member of the NDMA. Kamal Kishore, programme advisor of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and Lt. Gen. (retd) N.C. Marwah were also named as members.
6) IFCI to become Government Company: The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, on 29 December 2014 approved the infusion of RS. 60 crore in Industrial Finance Corporation of India (IFCI) Ltd. to make it a Government company by way of acquisition of preference shares from existing share holder(s). Industrial Finance Corporation of India was set up in 1948 as a Statutory Corporation under the Industrial Finance Corporation Act, 1948. A contribution of Rs. 60 crore to the capital of the company would raise the shareholding of the Government to 51 percent.
7) Department of Disability Affairs gets new name: The Department of Disability Affairs (Nishaktata Karya Vibhag) functioning under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has been renamed as the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (Viklangjan Sashaktikaran Vibhag). The Gazette notification in this regard has been issued by the Government of India, a statement said. Carved out as separate department and christened as the Department of Disability Affairs in 2012 to act as the nodal Department for matters pertaining to disability and Persons with Disabilities, the department deals with a variety of issues associated with disabilities.
8) Airtel dropped plans to charge extra for internet voice calls: Bharti Airtel on 29 December 2014 announced rolling back of plan to start charging customers for Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services that include applications such as Skype, Line and Viber, which lets users make free calls through the Internet.