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Important Current Affairs 19th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 19th September 2017

Current Affairs 19th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Vice President releases Commemorative Coin on Dr. M.S. Subbulakshmi 


The Vice President of India Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu released a Commemorative Coin on Bharat Ratna Dr. M.S. Subbulakshmi and inaugurated an exhibition entitled “Kurai Onrum Illai-MS: Life in Music” on the occasion of Birth Centenary Commemoration of Dr. M.S. Subbulakshmi here today. 
●    Minister of State (Independent charge) for Culture Dr. Mahesh Sharma was the Guest of Honour.
●    Addressing on the occasion, the Vice President said that Dr. M.S. Subbulakshmi was a legendary and iconic figure who mesmerized everyone from Mahatma Gandhi to common man. 
●    India is a land of rich cultural heritage with music in diverse genres representing the truly myriad mosaic of plurality. 
●    He further said that what defines India is this rich heritage of music and its unifying role in bringing people together cutting across religions, regions, castes and communities.
●    He said that the roots of Indian music can be traced to Vedic literature, Sama Veda in particular and as such every note and cadence associated with our ancient music systems have to be preserved and propagated. 
●    He further said that this is our bounden duty to see such cultural heritage is preserved which is given to us by our forefathers and pass it on to the next generation.

Army takes Swachch Bharat Abhiyan to the Highest Battle Field

Siachen, the highest battlefield in the world, is a place where everything is ferried from the hinterland. 
●    It is a logistics challenge to move all types of waste out of the glacier so that these do not become environmental hazard.
●    Since October 2014, when Swachch Bharat Abhiyan commenced, Siachen troops have removed and sent back more than 63 tons of garbage to the Base. 
●    These loads of garbage include packing material, barrels and perishables. 
●    On arrival of the trash to disposal areas, these are buried in deep trenches dug mechanically in areas which are not on run of the rivers and where landmass is not fragile.
●    A huge amount of garbage has been brought back through man-pack loads, porters, ponies and sometimes returning helicopter ferries. 
●    Army continues to take steps to ensure hygiene at the highest battle field as hither to fore.

Dr Jitendra Singh to inaugurate first ‘Pension Adalat’ tomorrow 

The Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh will inaugurate the first ‘Pension Adalat’ here tomorrow. 
●    He will also award the Pensioners for their outstanding contribution towards ‘Anubhav’ – a platform for retiring employees for sharing their experience of working with Government. 
●    Moving ahead from e-governance to m-governance, a Mobile App has been created to avail the services of Pensioners’ Portal which will also be launched by Dr Jitendra Singh tomorrow. 
●    As a measure of welfare to the pensioners of Government of India, a workshop on Pre-Retirement Counseling (PRC) of 300 retiring Central Government employees is also scheduled to be held. 
●    The event is being organized by Department of Pension & Pensioners’ Welfare, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, Government of India. 
●    The objective of this workshop is to create awareness about the post-retirement entitlements as well as an advance planning for life after retirement. 

Petroleum Minister co-chair 13th Inter-Governmental Commission meeting at Astana, Kazakhstan 


Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas and Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan will be visiting Astana, Kazakhstan from 19 - 20 September 2017 to co-chair the 13th Meeting of Inter-Governmental Commission (IGC) with Kazakhstan. 
●    Mr Kanat Bozumbayev, Minister of Energy of Kazakhstan will co-chair the meeting from Kazakhstan side.
●    The IGC meeting aims to follow up on the agenda set between India and Kazakhstan during the two visits of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to Kazakhstan in July 2015 and June 2017.
●    During his visit, Shri Pradhan is scheduled to discuss various issues and ideas for stepping up the cooperation in energy sector, trade, economic, investment, transport & connectivity, agriculture, information technology, space, health care and cultural spheres between the two countries with his counterpart. 
●    The two sides are also expected to finalize a strategy and roadmap for expanding trade, economic and investment cooperation between the two countries.


First ever National Conference on “Mission Mode to address Under-Nutrition” held in New Delhi

The first ever National Conference on "Mission Mode to address Under-Nutrition" was successfully held in New Delhi today. 
●    The conference was inaugurated by the Minster of Women & Child Development, Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi in the presence of Minister of State for Women & Child Development, Dr. Virendra Kuamr. 
●    The CEO, NITI Aayog, Shri Amitabh Kant, Secretary, Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Shri Parameswaran Iyer; Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development, Shri Rakesh Srivastava and Additional Secretary, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Shri Manoj Jhalani also addressed the participants. 
●    The conference was organized by the Ministry of Women & Child Development in collaboration with Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation and Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, keeping in mind the goal of “Mission Malnutrition Free India-2022”.
●    Speaking on the occasion, Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi said that after the resounding success of Prime Minister Narendra Modi Ji’s Beti Bachao Beti Padhao programme, the WCD Ministry is now targeting malnutrition. 
●    For this, there is urgent need to improve the quality of supplementary nutrition and also make the delivery system efficient, she added. 
●    Smt Maneka Gandhi said that we must provide 1000 calories to women and 600 calories to children under ICDS. 
●    The focus of the entire programme should be to administer nutrition rather than feeding beneficiaries by giving "Nutrient Dense Food". 
●    A change in policy is required to implement this, the Minister said. 


Sixth India Minerals and Metals Forum focuses on Indian Steel Industry Roadmap upto 2025 and mining, production demand and delivery

The sixth India Minerals and Metals Forum organised by the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) of Kolkata gets underway in New Delhi tomorrow. 
●    The Steel Minister Chaudhary Birender Singh will inaugurate it.
●    The discussion in the seminar focuses on Indian steel industry looking up to 2025; mining, production demand and delivery; Innovative applications for a future ready non- ferrous ecosystem; and Metals industry outlook– present challenges and future prospects. 
●    The Indian steel sector has grown rapidly over the past few years and presently it is the third largest steel producer globally, contributing to about 2% of the country's GDP. India has also crossed 100 MT mark for production for sale.
●    India is seen as a “bright spot” for the global steel production growth on account of the government’s push to augment capacity and demand from the construction, automotive and infrastructure sectors. 
●    The government has been spearheading growth in steel production capacity, with upgrades being made to existing steel manufacturing units and state-owned companies stepping in to build new steel plants.
●    The Cabinet approved the National steel policy 2017 that envisages Rs. 10 lakh crore investment to create more capacity in the steel sector. 

TRAI reduced IUC fee 


The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) on Tuesday more than halved the so-called interconnect usage charge (IUC) to six paise with effect from 1 October and abolished it altogether for all local calls starting 1 January 2020, dealing a big blow to older telecom firms, such as Bharti Airtel Ltd, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular ltd, and a potential boost to newcomer Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd.
●    The 57% cut in interconnection usage charges (IUC) to 6 paise/minute will drag Idea Cellular deeper into the red, and can result in losses for Airtel as well. 
●    The change could push some older telecom operators into losses. 
●    Previously, analysts had estimated that a reduction in IUC from 14 paise to 6 paise would mean a gain of around Rs3,800 crore for Reliance Jio and a corresponding loss for incumbents.
●    Trai believes that the reduction of the IUC, levied by a telecom operator for terminating a call from another telecom firm (the second telecom firm pays) will benefit consumers and boost competition.
On its website, the regulator said that the move to the so-called Bill And Keep regime (where no interconnect charge is paid by a telecom firm to another) would “encourage flat rate billing and time differentiated charges, both of which will improve capacity utilization and will be in theinterest of consumers”.
 

Current Affairs 19th September 2017: INTERNATIONAL NEWS

Singapore to set up Skill Center in Northeast: Dr Jitendra Singh

The Government of Singapore will set up a Skill Center at Guwahati which will cater to the entire North-Eastern region. 
●    This was stated here by Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh after a meeting with a high-level delegation represented by the High Commissioner of Singapore, Mr Lim Thuan Kuan here yesterday. 
●    The Indian side led by Dr Jitendra Singh, consisted of senior officers from the Ministry of DoNER, Department of Space and Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, which are the three main areas where Singapore has expressed its keenness to collaborate with India. 
●    As far as Skill Centre at Guwahati, it was stated that an MoU has already been formalized between Singapore and the State Government of Assam. 
●    As a follow-up to this, a Skill Center is proposed to be set up at Guwahati by the year 2019 and the Ministry of DoNER will coordinate in this initiative. 
●    The Singapore delegation also expressed its preference to engage with India in the area of Space Technology for collaboration in “peaceful uses of Outer Space”. 
●    To this, Dr Jitendra Singh said that the issue will be followed up in an appropriate manner. 

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Important Current Affairs 18th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 18th September 2017

Current Affairs 18th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Airports Authority of India to take up development work at Lucknow, Deoghar, Rajkot and Allahabad airports 

The Airports Authority of India (AAI) will undertake new development works at Lucknow, Deoghar, Rajkot and Allahabad airports. 
●    The objective is to improve and develop airport infrastructure to meet growing traffic demands.
●    AAI plans to construct new integrated passenger terminal building at Chaudhary Charan Singh International Airport, Lucknow at an estimated cost of Rs. 1230 crores. 
●    Passenger traffic at this airport has grown steadily during the last 5 years. 
●    The new terminal will be able to handle 4000 passengers during peak hour and 6.35 million passengers per annum.
●    At Deoghar in Jharkhand, AAI will develop the airport to facilitate joint use for civil operation up to Airbus-320 and DRDO operation up to C-130 type of aircraft. 
●    The work will be carried out at an estimated cost of Rs. 401.34 crore on fixed cost basis and Rs. 427.43 crore on completion cost basis.
●    An MoU was signed between the Govt. of Jharkhand, DRDO and AAI in March, 2017. 


Union Home Minister operationalizes the New Intelligence Set-up of SSB 

Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh operationalised the New Intelligence Set-up of the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) at a function here today. 
●    This marked the culmination of a long pending aspiration of the Force following approval of the Union Home Minister.
●    SSB has been declared as the Lead Intelligence Agency (LIA) for both the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Bhutan borders. 
●    Thus, it was felt that a well knit intelligence network of the highest capabilities that can function and deliver would be the prime requirement of comprehensive Border Management. 
●    This was quite essential as the operations of SSB have to be Intelligence based so as to prevent criminals and smugglers from taking advantage of the friendly borders with Nepal and Bhutan. 
●    MHA has accordingly sanctioned 650 posts in various ranks from Battalion to Frontier Headquarters. 
●    Speaking on the occasion, Shri Rajnath Singh said the job of SSB is much more demanding and challenging since it is vested the responsibility of guarding open borders unlike other borders. 
●    This makes the task much more challenging and demands highest alertness to check illegal activities like smuggling of arms, Fake Indian Currency Notes (FICN), drugs and human-trafficking. 

Training programme for CBRN emergencies at Chennai Airport 

The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) is conducting a basic training programme to enhance the preparedness of Airport Emergency Handlers to respond to CBRN emergencies, encompassing threats emanating from the use of Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear material at the airports. 
●    The training programme is being conducted in collaboration with the Airport Authority of India (AAI) and Institute of Nuclear Medicine & Allied Sciences (INMAS). 
●    The training programme, which started today at the Kamaraj Airport in Chennai, was inaugurated by Dr. S. Christopher, Secretary, Department of Defence Research & Development and Chairman, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).
●    The programme consists of lectures as well as field training, including live demonstrations of detection and decontamination, including use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). 
●    Apart from equipping the airport emergency handlers to handle CBRN emergencies, the training programme will also enable them to provide medical first aid and initial psycho-social support. 
●    A total of 200 personnel will be trained on various aspects of CBRN emergencies during the week-long training.


Ministry of Tourism Observes Swachhta Pakhwada

The Third day’s work of Swachhta Pakhwada has been planned by the Ministry of Tourism to undertake Cleanliness campaign at the Jantar Mantar and surrounding area by Officers and staff members of Ministry of Tourism. 
●    Accordingly the designated officials and officers visited the ASI monument Jantar Mantar, New Delhi. 
●    Shri P. Venkatesan, Director, PMU (SBM), explained the importance of the monument. After this, the staff members undertook an intensive Cleanliness work, in which all the officials of ASI, including the Conservation Assistant have also taken part. 
●    The cleaning work was done in the parking area, service road, surrounding area of ticket counter and drinking water area. 
●    Thus the Third day s work ended yielding the desired result. 

Swachhata Hi Seva National Media Consultation held in Capital 


Over 100 journalists, development agencies and community workers attended a National Media Consultation on the Swachh Bharat Mission in the Capital. 
●    The Secretary, Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Shri Parameswaran Iyer, presided over the consultation. 
●    In his opening remarks, Shri Iyer shared details of the nation-wide mass mobilization drive, “Swachhata Hi Seva”, which follows an impassioned call by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, ahead of the 3rd anniversary of Swachh Bharat Mission that falls on 2nd October. 
●    He said that the Swachhata Hi Seva campaign is seeing large scale mobilization of people from all walks of life to undertake shramdaan for cleanliness and construction of toilets, and cleaning up of public and tourist places. 
●    The participation has already begun in full swing, and has ranged from the President of India to the common citizen, involving Union Ministers, Governors, Chief Ministers, legislators, celebrities, faith leaders, and corporate leaders spearheading the campaign in their respective areas of influence. 
●    He particularly appreciated the tremendous efforts being made by school children, central police services and defence personnel.


First ever National Conference on “Mission Mode to address Under-Nutrition” to be held in New Delhi

The Ministry of Women and Child Development will hold the first ever National Conference in New Delhi tomorrow on Mission Mode to address Undernutrition in the country. 
●    In his curtain raiser briefing in New Delhi today, the Secretary WCD, Shri Rakesh Srivastava said that this conference is being organized by the Ministry of Women & Child Development in collaboration with Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation and Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, keeping in mind the goal of “Malnutrition Free India-2022”.
●    Giving details about the conference, the Secretary WCD said that the Government has decided to lay focused attention on this issue and for this said purpose, Ministry of Women and Child Development has identified 113 districts across the States/UTs based on the composite index of NITI Aayog and prevalence of stunting from NFHS-4 data. 
●    At least one district has been selected from each State/UTs so that the action taken in the selected district can be emulated in the other districts also, he explained.
●    Shri Srivastava said that the National Conference, first of its kind, aims at bringing convergence at District/Block levels of the three key Departments (Health & Family Welfare, ICDS/Social Welfare and Drinking Water and Sanitation) wherein a roadmap would be drawn to evolve an appropriate strategy in tackling the problem of stunting, undernutrition and wasting comprehensively and conclusively.
 

Current Affairs 18th September 2017: WORLD NEWS

China Opens Highway To Nepal Via Tibet


China has opened a strategic highway in Tibet to the Nepal border which could be used for civilian and defence purposes, a move that Chinese experts say will enable Beijing to make forays into South Asia, according to a media report today.
●    The 40.4-kilometre highway in Tibet between Xigaze airport and Xigaze city centre officially opened to the public on Friday with a short section linking the national highway to the Nepal border.
●    The highway will shorten the journey from an hour to 30 minutes between the dual-use civil and military airport and Tibet's second-largest city.
●    State-run 'Global Times' quoted experts as saying that the highway "will enable China to forge a route into South Asia in both economic and defence terms" and being a forerunner to a railway line connecting Nepal.
●    Geographically, any extension of the road and railway connectivity to South Asia is through India, Bhutan and to Bangladesh.
●    Chinese officials have said in the past that the projects are feasible and could become a trade corridor for India and China if New Delhi comes on board.


Nawaz Sharif’s wife Begum Kulsoom wins Lahore by-election


Ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s ailing wife on Sunday won the crucial by-election in Lahore that was seen as a test of support for the family after the Supreme Court dismissed Mr. Sharif from the office in the Panama Papers scandal.
●    Begum Kulsoom won the NA-120 seat in a close contest with cricket-turned-politician Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-i- Insaf candidate Yasmin Rashid.
●    The parliamentary seat, said to be a stronghold of the Sharif family, fell vacant after the Supreme court on July 28 disqualified Mr. Sharif in the Panama Papers case on grounds that he was dishonest.
●    The Election Commission spokesperson said that Ms. Kulsoom bagged 59,413 votes defeating Mr. Rashid with a margin of more than 13,000 votes. 
●    Mr. Rashid got 46,145 votes while Sheikh Yaqoob from the Milli Muslim League, a new party backed by Hafiz Saeed-led Jamaat-ut-Dawa (JuD), stood third with more than 4,000 votes.
●    The support for the Sharif family has, however, diminished as in 2013 general election Mr. Sharif had defeated Mr. Rashid with a margine of more than 41,000.

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Important Current Affairs 17th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 17th September 2017

Current Affairs 17th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Sail Supplies 80 Per Cent Steel for Sardar Sarovar Project 

Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL) has supplied 80 per cent steel required for construction of the Sardar Sarovar Project inaugurated by the Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi today. 
●    Once again partnering in one of the most prestigious and important national projects, SAIL supplied around 85,000 tonnes of steel (TMT) for the entire Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd. (SSNNL) project, which comprises all the canals throughout Gujarat, which are connected to Narmada River and Dam. 
●    Sardar Sarovar project is the second largest concrete gravity dam (by volume) and has the world's third largest spillway discharging capacity. 
●    The Sardar Sarovar Dam is a gravity dam built on Narmada river near Navagam, Gujarat, which will benefit four Indian states namely Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Rajasthan. 
●    A part of the Narmada Valley Project, it will help in irrigation and electrical power supply.
●    It is a part of a large hydraulic engineering project involving the construction of a series of large irrigation and hydroelectric multi-purpose dams on the Narmada river. 
●    One of the 30 dams planned on river Narmada, Sardar Sarovar Dam (SSD) is the largest structure to be built. 
●    The project will irrigate more than 18,000 m2 (190,000 sq ft), most of it in drought prone areas of Kutch and Saurashtra. 
●    The total installed capacity of the power facilities is 1,450 MW.

Government is working on simplifying labour laws


The government is committed to labour reforms and simplification in the related laws to safeguard workers' interest, Labour and Employment Minister Santosh Kumar Gangwar said today. 
●    Listing a slew of steps to protect workers' interest, the minister said provisions have been made in the Employees' Compensation (Amendment) Act, 2017 to increase the penalty for its contravention from Rs 5,000 to Rs 50,000, which is extendable to Rs 1 lakh. 
●    Addressing the Golden Jubilee Award Ceremony of Vishwarkar Rashtriya Puraskar, Gangwar said, "In accordance with the priorities set by Prime Minister Narendra Modi government, Labour Ministry is working towards 'reforms and simplification in labour laws' and converting 44 labour laws into 4 simplified codes". 
●    Terming it a major step towards simplification of laws and ease of doing business, the minister said technology is used widely for administrative and other reforms so that labour laws could be made rational. 
●    Asserting that workers are backbone of the economy, Gangwar said it is for the first time that minimum wages have been enhanced for all sectors, including agriculture and construction.

Current Affairs 17th September 2017: AWARDS

Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar gives away Vishwakarma Rashtriya Puraskar & National Safety Awards 

The Minister of State for Labour & Employment (Independent charge), Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar presented the Vishwakarma Rashtriya Puraskar and National Safety Awards (performance year 2015) to awardees at a function held at Vigyan Bhavan in New Delhi today.
●    On the 50th Golden Jubilee Award presentation Ceremony, Shri Gangwar  has given away the Vishwakarma Rashtriya Puraskar to 111 individuals in recognition of outstanding suggestions given by worker or group of workers and implemented by the management resulting in improvement in quality, productivity and working conditions such as safety, health and environmental conservation. 
●    The National Safety Award to 126 (73 winners & 53 runners-up) in recognition of outstanding safety performance of industrial establishments, construction sites, ports and installations under AERB to stimulate and maintain the interests of both the management and the workers in accident prevention programmes.
●    Speaking on the occasion, the Labour & Employment Minister said that Hon’ble PM, Shri Narendra Modi is the “Shilpkaar of New India”. 
●    Today on the birthday of the Hon’ble Prime Minister, and under his strong able dynamic leadership India is poised to become a developed country and in the last three years rapid industrialisation, make in India, skill India, employment generation and sustainable development has been the top priority and agenda of this government.

Current Affairs 17th September 2017: ECONOMY

Life insurers cut fresh exposure to equities by 57% in FY17


The life insurance industry, led by state-run LIC, drastically cut down its fresh exposure in equities by 57 per cent during the fiscal 2016-17 to Rs 16,793 crore from Rs 39,535 crore a year ago, data collated by the Life Insurance Council said. 
●    This reduction was despite the fact that key market indices went up remarkably during the year with the BSE Sensex alone rising to 29,620 on March 31 this year from 25,342 a year ago. 
●    The private sector life insurers, numbering 23, too, have been a net seller in the equity market as they sold Rs 438 crore during this period. 
●    Accordingly, the market value of equity portfolios held by the life insurers ballooned from Rs 5.95 trillion in FY16 to Rs 7.56 trillion in FY17. 
●    In contrast, the life insurers' investment in fixed income, where government securities are major components, grew 15 per cent to Rs 21,67,143 crore from Rs 18,81,361 crore a year ago.

Government to sell Air India properties owned by them


The government has decided to sell some of Air India’s real estate directly to expedite the state-owned carrier’s divestment. 
●    This follows the discovery that some of the assets are not owned by the carrier but on a 99-year lease from the government. 
●    “Properties where the government has the ownership will go back to the government, which will sell it on behalf of Air India,” said a senior aviation ministry official who did not want to be named. 
●    Air India officials confirmed that two such properties in Delhi owned by the urban development ministry have already been identified. 
●    “One is the 4-acre land at Baba Kharak Singh Marg near Connaught Place and the other is the residential colony in Vasant Vihar. 
●    These properties are on 99-year lease to Air India and the money earned through the sale of these assets would be used to clear debt,” said an Air India official requesting anonymity. 
●    The plan for the Vasant Vihar residential colony is to hand it over to NBCC Ltd, which will redevelop it. The plan for the land near Connaught Place has not been decided yet. 


SEBI plans to allow REITs, InvITs to raise funds via bonds


Aiming to make REITs and InvITs more attractive to investors, markets regulator SEBI plans to relax norms to allow these trusts to raise funds by issuing debt securities.
●    A proposal to amend REITs (Real Estate Investment Trusts) and InvITs (Infrastructure Investment Trusts) would be placed before SEBI’s board tomorrow in order to facilitate growth of such trusts, an official said.
●    SEBI had notified the REITs and InvITs Regulations in 2014, allowing setting up and listing of such trusts, which are very popular in some advanced markets. 
●    However, only two InvITs — IRB InvIT Fund and Indiagrid Trust — got listed on the stock exchanges so far.
●    Several attempts are already being made to garner due attention from business houses in the country but all the efforts failed leading to Sebi reconsidering the proposal to give further relaxations.
●    According to the proposal, REITs and InvITs, whose units are listed in nationwide stock exchanges can issue debt securities.
●    Besides, the regulator plans to allow such trusts to invest in holding company with 50 per cent stake.
 

Current Affairs 17th September 2017: GLOBAL NEWS

More than 67000 people in Japan are above the age of 100


In Japan, the number of people over 100 years has increased to 67,782.
●    This figure has registered an increase of 2000 compared to last year.
●    According to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, the number of women in them is 88 percent.
●    These figures were released on the occasion of 'Azad Day', which is celebrated in Japan on third Monday of every September.
●    Since 1971, the number of people aged 100 years in Japan has been increasing every year since 1971 and the trend is expected to remain intact due to the facilities like the country's advanced medical science and maximum health awareness.
●    Nabi Tajima, a native of Kikai Island, born in August 1900, is the oldest woman in Japan with age of 117 years.
●    At the same time, in July 1905, born in Ashono of South Hokkaido, Masajo Nonaka is the oldest man in Japan, with 112 years of age.


Bangladesh begins building 14,000 shelters for Rohingya refugees


Bangladesh today began constructing 14,000 new shelters for the more than 400,000 Muslim Rohingya refugees fleeing violence in neighbouring Myanmar to ensure they remain confined to an area and do not fan out across the country.
●    The refugees have been fleeing to Bangladesh for three weeks to escape a military crackdown in Myanmar's Rakhine state, which the UN has said amounts to ethnic cleansing.
●    Myanmar says the crackdown is a response to last month's deadly attacks on police by militants in the northern state and denies it is targeting civilians.
●    Bangladesh has been overwhelmed by the exodus and struggling to house the refugees in the shelters being built with assistance from UN and other international organisations.
●    "Work to construct the 14,000 temporary shelters began today at Kutupalang," a disaster management ministry spokesman told , adding the army has been asked to build them in 10 days.

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Important Current Affairs 16th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 16th September 2017

Current Affairs 16th September 2017: DAYS AND DATES

30th Anniversary of Montreal protocol and 23rd World Ozone Day Celebrated 

Highlighting the strength of the active collaboration between the government, industries and all stakeholders in the implementation of Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) phase-out programme in the country, Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan highlighted the importance of individual awareness and the strength of collective action.   
●    The Minister also laid special emphasis on the role played by children in ensuring the success of such campaigns.
●    Addressing a gathering at the celebrations of the 30th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol and 23rd World Ozone Day here today, with the theme - "Caring for all life under the Sun”, the Minister made a special mention of the pan-India awareness campaign launched by the Environment Ministry on the occasion. 
●    This campaign was among the most widespread engagements of the Ministry for awareness generation, carried out with the active partnership of States through schools and academic/research institutions spread across the country.  
●    The awareness campaign saw a participation of about 28 lakh students in more than 13, 000 schools and reached out to 214 districts across 16 states of the country.  
●    The Minister also spoke of the strong policy leadership given by India during the negotiations for the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol.  
●    Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that it is recognized that India played a crucial role in the adoption of the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol. 

Current Affairs 16th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Vice President of India lays Foundation Stone for the first Regional Vocational Training Institute in Hyderabad 

Vice President Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, today in Hyderabad laid the foundation stone for Regional Vocational Training Institute which is the first of its kind for the State of Telangana boosting skill development opportunities among women ready to contribute to the country’s workforce. 
●    Laying the foundation stone Shri Venkaiah Naidu, said, “Setting up of RVTI in Hyderabad is one defining step towards women empowerment. 
●    It the duty of all government bodies including gram panchayat, to do everything possible to empower women in the society. 
●    I would like to congratulate and extend my best wishes to Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship for such a great job. 
●    Through skill development we will not only empower our own country and its industries but also contribute to economies across the world. 
●    There is a huge demand for skilled workforce world over and it is the right that we reap our demographic dividend and bridge this demand supply gap. 
●    Minister of Petroleum & Natural Gas and Minister for Skill Development & Entrepreneurship Shri Dharmendra Pradhan said, “Women training and their empowerment has been one of the priority areas of Government of India.  

Now you can complain about bad food in rail journey


To ensure the quality of food on trains, railways is set to launch a new feedback system where passengers will be able to rate the food they are provided, on tablets.
●    The service to get online feedback will be introduced in premium trains like Rajdhani, Shatabdi and Duronto Express. 
●    The on-board service supervisors on 100 trains will be provided with tabs and they can approach any passenger requesting them to give feedback on meals provided in trains.
●    They can record their feedback through an online form on the tablets to be provided by the Railways, a  railway official said. 
●    The trials for the same were conducted on Ahemdabad-Delhi Rajdhani Express on September 14.  
●    The system would be formally launched on the Mumbai Rajdhani in a couple of weeks, IRCTC chief spokesperson Pinakin Morawala said. 
●    The passenger will be asked to fill a format rating quality of food on scale of 1-5 and areas which get less than 3, passenger will be asked to share specific details, a senior railway official said.

Centre to soon link Aadhaar with driving licence


The Centre will soon start linking driving licence with Aadhaar, Electronics and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said on Friday.
●    "It would be done soon to check the menace of multiple licensing," he said after inaugurating the Haryana Digital Summit-2017 here.
●    "I have already had a word with Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari, in this regard and the process to link Aadhaar with driving licence would be set in motion soon," .
●    Referring to the debate on security of Aadhaar data, Prasad said the biometric information -- which includes iris scan and fingerprints -- is stored in an encrypted form and is very secure.
●    "If you look at the physical card, it has my photo, says I am a male and has my permanent Patna address at the back. 
●    It does not have details like names of my parents, caste, religion, educational qualification, financial income or health records. 
●    None of the things by which you can be profiled are mentioned on the Aadhaar card," he said.
●    He added that "Aadhaar is a digital identity" which confirms the physical identity with the help of biometrics and there are laws in place to check against unauthorised usage of Aadhaar.
●    The central government has linked PAN card to Aadhaar to stop money laundering, an official statement quoting him said.

Current Affairs 16th September 2017: GLOBAL NEWS

Qatar restores diplomatic ties with Iran amid regional crisis


Qatar restored full diplomatic relations with Iran early Thursday, disregarding the demands of Arab nations now locked in a regional dispute with the energy-rich country that it lessen its ties to Tehran.
●    In announcing its decision, Qatar did not mention the diplomatic crisis roiling Gulf Arab nations since June, when Qatar found its land, sea and air routes cut off by its neighbors over Doha’s policies across the Mideast.
●    “Qatar has shown it is going to go in a different direction,” said Kristian Coates Ulrichsen, a research fellow at the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University who lives in Seattle. 
●    “It could very well be calculated toward reinforcing the point that Qatar will not bow to this regional pressure placed upon it.”
●    Qatar’s Foreign Ministry announced early Thursday that the country’s ambassador would return to Tehran. 
●    Qatar pulled its ambassador in early 2016 after Saudi Arabia’s execution of a prominent Shiite cleric sparked attacks on two Saudi diplomatic posts in Iran, a move to show solidarity with the kingdom.

17-year-old Alleged Mastermind of Blue Whale Challenge Caught in Russia


A 17-year-old Russian girl has been arrested in the Khabarovsk Krai region of Russia, for allegedly being the mastermind behind the notorious blue whale challenge.
●    The girl reportedly was heading multiple groups that were running under the "Blue Whale Challenge" name and was allegedly threatening to kill her victims or their family members if they did not follow her instructions. 
●    She is shown barefoot in a police video as cops examine her flat and the books, drawings found in it, most of it linked to suicide. 
●    She possessed a drawing she made of 22-year-old Philipp Budeikin, the man accused of being the ‘inventor’ of the deadly game.
●    The game allegedly consists of a series of tasks assigned to players by administrators during a 50-day period, with the final challenge requiring the player to commit suicide. 
●    The term "Blue Whale" comes from the phenomenon of beached whales, which is linked to suicide.
●    The girl is said to have played the game herself, but did not complete the final challenge and chose to become an "admin".
●    The teenage suspect introduced herself as a man to her victims.

Current Affairs 16th September 2017: ECONOMY

Govt may launch India's own cryptocurrency 'Lakshmi'

With cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin gaining popularity in India, the government may roll out the country’s very own cryptocurrency.
●    According to a report in Business Standard, sources in the government said that a committee was set up to discuss the proposal of having India’s own cryptocurrency, as an alternative to the Indian rupee.
●    The report also said the government might name its cryptocurrency “Lakshmi”. 
●    Reserve Bank’s executive chairman Sudarshan Sen on Wednesday had said the central bank is not comfortable with non-fiat cryptocurrencies like the Bitcoin. 
●    He had also hinted that it may launch its own cryptocurrency. 
●    “Right now, we have a group of people who are looking at fiat cryptocurrencies. Something that is an alternative to the Indian rupee, so to speak. 
●    We are looking at that closely," Sen had said.
●    The introduction of this new cryptocurrency may require the amendment of the Currency Act.

Current Affairs 16th September 2017: SPACE SCIENCE

New nano-powder to produce hydrogen fuel from urine
Scientists, including one of Indian origin, have developed an aluminium nano-powder that turns urine into hydrogen instantly, which can power fuel cells and provide clean energy.
●    Scientists from the US Army Research Laboratory (ARL) had earlier announced that their nano-galvanic aluminium-based powder produced pure hydrogen when coming into contact with water.
●    The researchers observed a similar reaction when adding their powder to any liquid containing water. 
●    They also found that adding it to urine releases hydrogen at a much higher rate than with ordinary water, researchers said.
●    Hydrogen, the most plentiful element in the universe, has the potential to power fuel cells and provide energy to future soldiers.
●    Fuel cells generate electricity quietly, efficiently and without pollution. 
●    They are "more energy-efficient than combustion engines and the hydrogen used to power them can come from a variety of sources," researchers said.

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Important Current Affairs 15th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 15th September 2017

Current Affairs 15th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

President of India launches ‘Swachhta hi Seva’ Campaign 

The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, launched a nationwide sanitation campaign, ‘Swachhta hi Seva’, at Ishwariganj village in Kanpur today (September 15, 2017). 
●    He also administered the ‘Swachhta hi Seva’ pledge to all present there whereby they resolved to create a clean, healthy and new India. 
●    The President honoured village-level champions who contributed to making Ishwariganj village ‘Open Defecation Free’.  
●    Addressing the gathering, the President said India is fighting a decisive battle for cleanliness and hygiene. 
●    Today, all of them had taken an oath that committed them to ensuring public hygiene, personal hygiene and environmental hygiene. 
●    Cleanliness is not the responsibility of only sanitation personnel and government departments; it is a multi-stakeholder national movement.  

As a follow up to the new policy called Scheme for Harnessing and Allocating Koyala (Coal) Transparently in India (SHAKTI), Coal India Limited (CIL) conducts the auction for Independent Power Producers (IPPs) 

On May 17, 2017, Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved a new policy for allocation of future coal linkages in a transparent manner for power sector. This policy was christened as Scheme for Harnessing and Allocating Koyala (Coal) Transparently in India (SHAKTI). 
●    The policy was an important initiative in alleviating one key challenge in power sector, viz. lack of coal linkage and is expected to positively contribute in resolution of a number of stressed assets. 
●    As a part of this policy, CIL/SCCL is to grant coal linkages on notified price on auction basis for Independent Power Producers (IPPs) having already concluded domestic coal based Power Purchase Agreement (PPAs), with the bidding parameter being levellised discount on existing tariff that the IPP is willing to provide.
●    This was expected to result in a win-win situation of IPPs having a long term supply security of coal from a source of their choice while consumers will benefit from a lower tariff.

●    Accordingly, Coal India Limited (CIL), a PSU of Ministry of Coal, Government of India, invited expressions of interest from potential bidders by 19 August 2017. 
●    A total of 31 applications were received. These were scrutinized by Central Electricity Authority (CEA) and finally a total of 14 bidders were found to be eligible.

The Transport Development Council and State Transport Ministers scheduled to meet in Vadodara on 19th September 

The 38th meeting of Transport Development Council and State Transport Ministers is scheduled to be held at Vadodara in Gujarat on the 19thSeptember of September, 2017. 
●    Shri Nitin Gadkari, Minister for Road Transport & Highways, Shipping and Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation said in a statement today that Transport Ministers of all states will come together in the day long meeting to discuss issues like public transport reforms, the status of Vahan and Sarathi sites under Transport National Register, Seamless Transport across state borders, identification of Black Spots, Digitalisation of payments, Inter-State transfer of private vehicles and citizen facilitation.
●    The Council meeting will give an opportunity to the state Transport Ministers to get an exposure on the new and upcoming reforms in the transport sector. 
●    There will be a discussion on the subject of Public Transport Reforms and way forward to Bus Ports. 
●    Director, Transport for London (TFL) will participate in this discussion via video conferencing, along with other experts in the sector. 
●    The Transport Ministers will also be taken on a visit to the modern Vadodara Bus Terminal and also the Vadodara Automated Driving Testing Track. 
●    The objective is to give them a first hand exposure to such modern facilities, so that they can help develop the same in their respective states.


Rs.300 cr Plan for better solid waste management in Delhi 

Minister of Housing & Urban Affairs Shri Hardeep Singh Puri today announced a Rs.300 cr action plan for a visible improvement in Solid Waste Management in Delhi. 
●    Addressing the  ‘Public Affairs Forum of India’ here today, the Minister said this initiative will be supported by the Ministry from the ‘Urban Development Fund’ operated by Delhi Development Authority.
●    Shri Puri informed that under the Plan, automated machinery, equipment and other systems will be procured for better collection, transport and storage of garbage, decentralized treatment and better maintenance of sewers and drains. 
●    Soon after assuming office, Shri Puri raised the issue of garbage problem in the national capital during a discussion on Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban) in the Ministry on the fifth of this month and desired an action plan for improving the situation.
●    North, South and East Municipal Corporation of Delhi will spend Rs.100 cr each on procuring a total of 549 units of modern equipment. 
●    An assistance of Rs.80 cr will be provided to each MCD from the Urban Development Fund. 
●    All equipment including treatment plants are to be procured and commissioned by the end of this year.
●    This initiative will quickly add a waste treatment capacity of 670 metric tons of bio-degradable waste besides preventing release of foul gases, smell and proliferation  of germs, pathogens, pests etc.

Stipend of Rs 50,000 per month be paid to the elite athletes preparing for Tokyo Olympic, Asian Games or Common Wealth Games to meet pocket expenses. 

The Olympic Task Force has recommended that stipend of Rs 50,000 per month be paid to the elite athletes preparing for Tokyo Olympic, Asian Games or Common Wealth Games to meet pocket expenses.
●    The Government, accepting the recommendation, today took decision to give stipend of Rs 50,000 per month. The Government has selected 152 elites under TOP scheme. 
●    All the athletes will get benefit from this decision. The stipend will be paid with effect from 1st September, 2017.
●    This decision was announced by the Minister of State (I/C) youth affairs and Sports Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore (Retd.) on social media platform.
●    Further, Government is getting in touch with all the athletes selected under TOP to get training & competition exposure plan and any further assistance required for preparation of prestigious competitions.

Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar to give away Vishwakarma Rashtriya Puraskar & National Safety Awards for the Performance year 2015 on 17th September 2017 

The Ministry of Labour & Employment, Government of India, has been operating the “Vishwakarma Rashtriya Puraskar (VRP)” (Previously known as Shram Vir National Awards) and “National Safety Awards (NSA)” since 1965.  
●    These Award schemes are operated by the technical wing of the Ministry, namely the Directorate General Factory Advice Service & Labour Institutes (DGFASLI), Mumbai – an attached office of the Ministry of Labour & Employment. 
●    DGFASLI renders technical advice/service to workers, their representatives & managements in factories and docks to make the industrial activities safe and to promote workers’ health & well-being. 
●    It is 50th (Golden Jubilee) Award presentation Ceremony being organised  by the ministry.
●    Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar, the Minister of State for Labour & Employment (Independent charge), will give away Vishwakarma Rashtriya Puraskar and National Safety Awards for the Performance year 2015 on 17th September 2017.

Current Affairs 15th September 2017: SPACE SCIENCE

Cassini spacecraft makes death plunge into Saturn after 20-year journey


The vaunted Cassini spacecraft was vaporized Friday as it streaked through Saturn’s atmosphere at 76,000 mph, ending a career that revolutionized scientists’ understanding of the ringed planet and its moons. 
●    But even during its final moments, the spacecraft was collecting intelligence and beaming it back to Earth, where researchers quickly began poring over it.
●    The last radio signal from Cassini to NASA’s giant antenna in Canberra, Australia, was received at 7:55 am ET, 30 seconds later than projected. 
●    The spacecraft was not expected to survive more than a minute after it lost touch with Earth.
●    Though NASA could have chosen to keep Cassini hanging around, managers chose to plunge it into the depths of Saturn, where the spacecraft could gather data on the planet’s composition and magnetic field that are available nowhere else.


Current Affairs 15th September 2017: GLOBAL NEWS

North Korea fires missile over Japan that lands far out in the Pacific


North Korea fired a missile that flew over Japan's northern Hokkaido far out into the Pacific Ocean on Friday, South Korean and Japanese officials said, deepening tensions after Pyongyang's recent test of its most powerful nuclear bomb. 
●    The missile flew over Japan and landed in the Pacific about 2,000 km (1,240 miles) east of Hokkaido,. 
●    Warning announcements about the missile blared around 7 a.m. (2200 GMT Thursday) in parts of northern Japan, while many residents received alerts on their mobile phones or saw warnings on TV telling them to seek refuge. 
●    U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis said the launch "put millions of Japanese into duck and cover", although residents in northern Japan appeared calm and went about their business as normal after the second such launch in less than a month. 
●    The missile reached an altitude of about 770 km (480 miles) and flew for about 19 minutes over a distance of about 3,700 km (2,300 miles), according to South Korea's military - far enough to reach the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam. 

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Important Current Affairs 14th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 14th September 2017

Current Affairs 14th September 2017: INTERNATIONAL RELATION

PM Modi and Japanese PM Abe lay foundation stone for India’s first High Speed Rail project

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe today jointly laid the foundation stone for India’s first high speed rail project between Mumbai and Ahmedabad. 
●    Speaking on the occasion, at a large public meeting in Ahmedabad, the Prime Minister spoke of the high ambition and willpower of “New India.” 
●    He congratulated the people of India on the occasion, and said that the bullet train project will provide speed and progress, and deliver results quickly. 
●    He said the Government’s focus is on increasing productivity through high speed connectivity. 
●    The Prime Minister thanked Japan for the technical and financial help given to India, for this project. 
●    He praised Prime Minister Abe for the fact that this project is being launched within such a short time. 

4 Japanese Industrial Townships will be setup


Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe arrived in Ahmedabad on Wednesday.
●    Mr. Abe, who is accompanied by his wife Akie Abe is in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s home State Gujarat to attend the 12th Indo-Japan Summit and to lay foundation for high-speed bullet trains.
●    Project of Varanasi Convention Centre is a symbol of cultural co-operation between Kyoto city of Japan and Varanasi. 
●    India and Japan are ancient civilisations and vibrant democracies. We know how to distribute the benefits to people, he says.
●    A series of administrative reforms have significantly improved the business sentiment in the country. 
●    Japan can benefit tremendously with the size and scale of our potential & skilled hands that India offers, says Mr. Modi.

Current Affairs 14th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

MOU between the Ministry of Corporate Affairs and Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) for Automatic and Regular Exchange of Information

Taking forward the initiative launched by the Government of India to curb the menace of shell companies, money laundering and black money in the country and prevent misuse of corporate structure by shell companies for various illegal purposes, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs and Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) have now concluded a formal Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for data exchange, on 6th September, 2017.
●    The MoU will facilitate the sharing of data and information between CBDT and MCA on an automatic and regular basis. 
●    It will enable sharing of specific information such as Permanent Account Number (PAN) data in respect of corporates, Income Tax returns (ITRs) of corporates, financial statements filed with the Registrar by corporates, returns of allotment of shares, audit reports and statements of financial transactions (SFT) received from banks relating to corporates. 
●    The MoU will ensure that both MCA and CBDT have seamless PAN-CIN (Corporate Identity Number) and PAN-DIN (Director Identity Number) linkage for regulatory purposes. 
●    The information shared will pertain to both Indian corporates as well as foreign corporates operating in India. 
●    In addition to regular exchange of data, CBDT and MCA will also exchange with each other, on request, any information available in their respective databases, for the purpose of carrying out scrutiny, inspection, investigation and prosecution.


Defence Minister felicitates Cantonment Boards on ODF Certification as a part of Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan 


Defence Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman felicitated 10 Cantonment Boards of Central Command on their achievement of acquiring ‘Open Defecation Free (ODF)’ status, in a function organized at Banaras Hindu University (BHU), Varanasi (UP), today. 
●    Presidents, Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) and elected members of the Cantonment Boards were awarded the certificate by the Minister during the event.
●    Smt Sitharaman complimented the Cantonment Boards for their efforts in achieving the ODF target and urged the boards to sustain and further improve the facilities created and drives conducted by them, with more zeal and enthusiasm. 
●    She appreciated the efforts of children as Swachhata Doots- the cleanliness ambassadors. 
●    She said that this goodwill gesture will make the coming generations emphasize cleanliness in their lives.
●    The Defence Minister said that the Defence Ministry is working on Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in phases. 
●    The first phase includes the cleanliness drive of Cantonment Boards and the municipal wards nearby. 
●    This phase involves the recycling of wastes as well as segregation of solid and liquid wastes.


NGT refuses to lift ban on 10-year-old diesel vehicles in Delhi-NCR


The National Green Tribunal on Thursday dismissed the Union government’s plea asking for modification in its order banning 10-year-old diesel vehicles in Delhi-NCR.
●    The green court, which was hearing the petition as part of the Vardhaman Kaushik case, which deals with air pollution in the city, noted that emission from diesel vehicles is carcinogenic in nature and one diesel vehicle causes pollution equivalent to 24 petrol vehicles or otherwise 40 CNG vehicles.
●    A bench headed by NGT chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar dismissed the Centre’s plea on the ground that the Supreme Court has also junked a similar plea.
●    The NGT bench said that the Union ministry of road transport and highways, which had sought modification of its April 7, 2015 order, did not file any review plea and moved the tribunal “in the guise of seeking modification”.
●    The bench which delivered the judgment also included Justices Jawad Rahim, RS Rathore and one expert member, BS Sajwan.

HDFC Bank is No 1 in BrandZ India Top 50 Jio no. 11


HDFC Bank retained its No 1 position in the BrandZ India top 50, doubling its brand value since 2014 with a sustained focus on improving services.
●    The leading private sector lender improved its brand value from USD 9.4 billion to USD 18 billion since 2014, said research agency Kantar Millward Brown in a statement here.
●    The bank has retained the top slot for the fourth year in a row.
●    The BrandZ Top 50 Most Valuable Indian Brands 2017 was announced today by WPP and Kantar Millward Brown.
●    "As reflected in this year's ranking, the most agile Indian brands have recognised the complexity in the market, and achieved just the right balance between aspirational and affordable," he added.
●    There were seven newcomers to the ranking, the report said. 
●    Telecom provider Reliance Jio ranks at No 11, months after its launch. 
●    Other new entrants included DMart, appliance brand Whirlpool, insurance brand Bajaj Allianz, Canara Bank and entertainment brands Sun Direct and DishTV.

President Kovind presents Rajbhasha awards on Hindi Diwas


President Ram Nath Kovind presented the Rajbhasha awards on the occasion of Hindi Diwas at a function held here today.
●    Kovind also launched the 'LILA Mobile App' in the presence of Union Minister of Home Affairs Rajnath Singh and Minister of State (Home) Hansraj Gangaram Ahir and Ministers of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju.
●    While addressing the gathering, Kovind extended his greetings to the nation and the Hindi lovers on the occasion of Hindi Diwas.
●    "I congratulate all the award winners and I appreciate their contributions to Hindi language. 
●    I also admire the Department of Official Language of Ministry of Home Affairs to recognize the excellent contributions of Ministries, Departments, Nationalized Banks and others in the field of Hindi," he said.
 

Current Affairs 14th September 2017: SPORTS

IOC announced 2024 and 2028 host cities of the Olympics

Paris and Los Angeles have been announced as respective hosts of the 2024 and 2028 Olympic Games.
●    The "tripartite agreement" between the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Paris 2024 and Los Angeles 2028 was ratified in the Peruvian capital Lima on Wednesday.
●    The historic compromise sees both cities join London as three-time hosts of the summer Games, with Paris getting its wish to go first and celebrate the 100th anniversary of its last Olympics in 1924.
●    LA, meanwhile, gets the certainty of a Games without a bidding contest and early access to at least £1.8bn in shared revenue to kick-start its legacy plans 11 years early.

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Important Current Affairs 13th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 13th September 2017

Current Affairs 13th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Special Secretary AYUSH gives away Prizes to Winners of Online Article Writing Contests 

Special Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH Shri Vd. Rajesh Kotecha, gave away the prizes to the winners of Online Article Writing Contests on Prevention and Management of Diabetes through Ayurveda, Unani and Homeopathy. 
●    The contest was held on digital platform like Facebook and Twitter page of the Ministry of AYUSH.
●    On this occasion, Shri Kotecha congratulated the winners and said that this type of activities help the Ministry to reach out to people who dedicate their life in the field of alternative medicine. 
●    He also said that Ministry welcomes any idea and suggestion in the field of AYUSH system of medicine and assures all help from the Ministry.
●    To make aware people about prevention and management of diabetes, the Ministry of AYUSH had conducted various Online Article Writing Contests on Prevention and Management of diabetes through Ayurveda, Homeopathy & Unani Systems. 
●    First prize is Rs. 20,000/-, second prize is Rs, 15000/-, third prize is Rs. 10000/- and two consolation prizes are Rs. 5000/- each. 
●    These contests were conducted on the Ministry’s Facebook & Twitter Social Media platforms. 


Building a new India: Pledge to Double Farmers Income by 2022

In order to improve the economic condition of the farmers, Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has set up an ambitious target in front of the nation. 
●    The goal is to double the income of the farmers by 2022. 
●    It has been for the first time, a Prime Minister has put such a target in front of the compatriots for the welfare of the farmers. 
●    Under the able guidance of Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, the Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Ministry has to achieve this target by 2022. 
●    The Ministry is committed to making his dreams come true. Farmers and officers are implementing schemes to increase the income of the farmers. 
●    Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) organised pledge taking ceremonies in 562 districts of the country between August 19 to September 11, 2017, as a clarion call to farmers to double their income by 2022 and a total of 47,08,47 farmers and agricultural workers participated in it.


Shri Kiren Rijiju to inaugurate 2-day National Conference on “Uniformed Women in Prison Administration”

The Minister of State for Home Affairs Shri Kiren Rijiju will inaugurate the 2-day National Conference on “Uniformed Women in Prison Administration” here tomorrow.
●    The Conference is being organised for women officers of the rank of Jailors to Dy. Superintendents of Prisons. 
●    This Conference will have Panel Discussions, Deliberations and Syndicate Discussions on 4 themes:
●    Difficulties in balancing family and work environment of Women Prison Officers.
●    Training needs of Women Prison Officers and Correctional Staff
●    Is there need for change of uniform for Woman Prison Officers
●    All the syndicates will make presentations based on their interactive session with different State Prison Officers, Academicians, Representatives from NGOs and students. 
●    It will be followed by an open house interaction, in which participants will be encouraged to interact to share their problems, ideas and experiences in connection with their day-to- day work in prisons as well as dealing with prison inmates.


2-day Regional Conference on Good Governance and Replication of Best Practices to begin in Goa tomorrow 

The Department of Administrative Reforms & Public Grievances (DARPG), Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Government of India is organising a 2-day Regional Conference on Good Governance and Replication of Best Practices on September 14-15, 2017 in collaboration with Government of Goa. 
●    The Secretary (DARPG), Shri C. Viswanath will inaugurate the conference tomorrow in Goa. 
●    The Chief Minister, Goa Shri Manohar Parrikar and Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh will address the participants in the Valedictory Session on September 15, 2017.
●    The theme for this year’s Conference is Good Governance and Replication of Best Practices. 
●    The Conference is an effort to create a common platform to share experiences in the formulation and implementation of citizen centric governance, improved public service delivery through e-Governance, transparent, accountable and citizen-friendly effective administration. 
●    Delegates from 25 States/UTs (of Southern, Central, Eastern, North Eastern Regions and 5 other States/UTs) will be participating in the conference.


Ministry of Railways permits m-Aadhar as one of the prescribed proofs of Identity for Rail Travel Purpose

Ministry of Railways has decided to permit m- Aadhar (Aadhar card on mobile app namely m- Aadhar launched by UIDAI) as one of the prescribed proofs of Identity for Rail Travel purpose in any reserved class.
●    m- Aadhar is a mobile app launched by UIDAI on which a person can download his/her Aadhar Card. 
●    It can be done only on the mobile number to which Aadhar has been linked. 
●    For showing Aadhar, the person has to open the app and enter his/ her password to show the Aadhar Card.
●    m- Aadhar when shown by the passenger on his/her mobile after entering the password should be accepted as proof of identity for undertaking journey in any reserved class over Indian Railways.


JNPCT wins “Container Terminal of the Year” Award, 2017 

Jawaharlal Nehru Port Container Terminal (JNPCT) was awarded “Container Terminal of the Year” Award for the above 0.6 million TEUs category at The Gateway Awards 2017 held at Mumbai. 
●    The Jawaharlal Nehru Port owned JNPCT won the award for its proactive strategies to ease congestion, smooth delivery of containers and revamping of infrastructure to support trade amidst adverse conditions. 
●    Accepting the award, Shri Neeraj Bansal, Deputy Chairman, JNPT said “JNPCT has been able to create growth momentum in the last few years as a result of various initiatives to increase the overall efficiency of the terminal and the Port. 
●    These initiatives have now started showing positive results and we will continue to further increase our efficiency levels.” 
●    The Gateway Award was instituted to recognise and promote best practices, innovation and motivation in the Indian Maritime industry. 


Secretary, Ministry of Coal reviews the coal supply position to the Thermal Power Plants 

Secretary, Ministry of Coal Shri Susheel Kumar reviewed the coal supply position to the Thermal Power Plants in the country. 
●    The meeting was attended by CMD CIL and all the CMDs of the subsidiary companies of CIL.
●    There has been growth of 17% in coal based thermal power generation, this is primarily on account of reduction in hydro power generation by 12%, in nuclear power generation by 36% and others by 7% in August, 2017 over August, 2016. 
●    CMD CIL expressed that the TPPs had earlier regulated and reduced their coal intake and presently when the production in the coal companies and off take from them is sporadically restrained on account of excessive rainfall, there has been a sudden increase in coal based power generation which has resulted in dwindling coal stock at the TPPs. 
●    CMD CIL also stated that there has been a growth of 17.8% in coal off take in August, 2017 as compared to August, 2016 and the overall cumulative growth in coal off take is 7.2% in the current year corresponding to the same period last year.


SPMCIL to Mint Commemorative Coins on the Birth centenaries of Dr. M S Subbulakshmi and Dr. M G Ramachandran 

Government of India has notified issuance of Commemorative Coins of Rs. 100/- and Rs. 10/- denomination on the eve of Birth Centenary of Dr. M S Subbulakshmi. 
●    Commemorative Coins of denominations Rs. 100/- and Rs. 5/- have also been announced on the occasion of Birth Centenary of Dr. M G Ramachandran. 
●    Sri Shanmukhananda Fine Arts & Sangeetha Sabha had requested Government of India to release Commemorative Coins of Rs.100/- and Rs. 10/- denomination in honour of Dr. M S Subbulakshmi. 
●    Similarly the proposal for issuance of commemorative coins for Dr. M G Ramachandran was received from Government of Tamil Nadu. 
●    The aforesaid Commemorative Coins will be minted by Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Limited (SPMCIL). 
●    Dr. Madurai Shanmukhavadivu Subbulakshmi also known as Dr. M.S. Subbulakshmi, was a Carnatic vocalist born on 16/09/1916 in Madurai under Madaras Presidency. 
●    She was the first musician ever to be awarded the Bharat Ratna. 
●    She is the first Indian musician to receive the Ramon Magsaysay award, often considered as Asia’s Nobel. Prize in 1974.

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Important Current Affairs 12th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 12th September 2017

Current Affairs 12th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Cabinet approves MoU between India and Morocco on cooperation in the field of health

The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Morocco on cooperation in the field of health. 
●    The MoU covers the following areas of cooperation:-
●    Non-communicable diseases, including child cardiovascular diseases and cancer; 
●    Drug Regulation and Pharmaceutical quality control; 
●    Communicable Diseases; 
●    Maternal, child and neonatal health; 
●    Hospital twinning for exchange of good practices; 
●    Training in administration and management of health services and Hospitals; 
●    Any other area of cooperation as may be mutually decided upon. 
●    A Working Group will be set up to further elaborate the details of cooperation and to oversee the implementation of this MoU.
 

Cabinet approves MoU between India and Armenia on Cooperation in the field of Disaster Management 

The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Armenia on Cooperation in the field of Disaster Management 
●    The MoU would enhance cooperation in the field of Disaster Management and contribute to the well-being and safety of the people of both the countries in the event of disaster. 
●    It will also result in exchange of information in the relevant fields of disaster management which is of mutual interest. 
●    Further, the MoU seeks to put in place a system, whereby both India and Armenia will be benefited from the disaster management mechanisms of the other country and will help in strengthening the areas of preparedness, response and capacity building. 

Cabinet approves hiving off mobile tower assets of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited into a separate company, fully owned by BSNL 

The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for hiving off mobile tower assets of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) into a separate company, fully owned by BSNL.
●    This approval authorizes BSNL to monetize its telecom tower infrastructure with the formation of a separate subsidiary company.
●    There are around 4,42,000 mobile towers in the country out of which more than 66,000 mobile tower are of BSNL. 
●    An independent, dedicated tower company of BSNL with a focused approach will lead to increasing of external tenancies and consequently higher revenue for the new company.
●    The telecom tower industry has emerged as an independent business to harness the potential for sharing of infrastructure. 
●    The business model arose from the need to achieve economies of scale and to reduce capital investment costs for providing mobile services. 


Cabinet approves implementation of the scheme “Dairy Processing & Infrastructure Development Fund” 

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs,  chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved a Dairy Processing & Infrastructure Development Fund” (DIDF) with an outlay of Rs 10,881 crore during the period from 2017-18 to 2028-29.
●    Consequent to the Union Budget 2017-18 announcement, Dairy Processing & Infrastructure Development Fund will be set up as a corpus of Rs 8004 crore with National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), the Expenditure Finance Committee has given approval for;
●    Initiation and setting up of Dairy Processing and Infrastructure Development Fund (DIDF) at a total scheme outlay of Rs 10881 crore. 
●    Out of Rs 10881 crore of financial outlay for project components of DIDF, Rs 8004 crore shall be loan from NABARD to National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) and National Dairy Development Cooperation (NCDC), Rs 2001 crore shall be end borrowers contribution, Rs 12 crore would be NDDB/NCDC‘s share and Rs 864 crore shall be contributed by DADF towards interest subvention. 
●    NABARD shall disburse Rs 2004 Cr, Rs 3006 Cr and Rs 2994 Cr during the year 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2019-20 respectively.


Cabinet approves introduction of the Payment of Gratuity (Amendment) Bill, 2017 in the Parliament 

The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for introduction of the Payment of Gratuity (Amendment) Bill, 2017 in the Parliament.
●    The Amendment will increase the maximum limit of gratuity of employees, in the private sector and in Public Sector Undertakings/ Autonomous Organizations under Government who are not covered under CCS (Pension) Rules, at par with Central Government employees.
●    The Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972 applies to establishments employing 10 or more persons. 
●    The main purpose for enacting this Act is to provide social security to workmen after retirement, whether retirement is a result of the rules of superannuation, or physical disablement or impairment of vital part of the body. 
●    Therefore, the Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972 is an important social security legislation to wage earning population in industries, factories and establishments.

Cabinet approves survey of Un-appraised Areas of Sedimentary Basins of India 

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, today gave its approval for a significant project to acquire 48,243 Line Kilometer (LKM) 2D seismic data for appraisal of Indian sedimentary basins where limited data is available. 
●    The project will help in increasing the investments in domestic production of oil and gas. 
●    The project will be implemented by NOCs, i.e. Oil India Limited (OIL) and Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC). 
●    OIL will conduct survey in North - Eastern States while remaining area will be covered by ONGC. 
●    Survey work will be carried out in 24 States. 
●    Total estimated cost of the entire project is Rs. 2932.99 crore spread over five years. 
●    Initially National Oil Companies (NOCs) are meeting the fund requirement from their own sources, which will be reimbursed by the Government.


AYUSH Minister inaugurates India’s first advanced Homoeopathy Virology lab in Kolkata 

The Union Minister of State for AYUSH (Independent Charge) Shri Shripad Yesso Naik inaugurated India’s first State of art virology laboratory at Dr. Anjali Chatterjee Regional Research Institute for Homoeopathy in Kolkata today. 
●    In his inaugural address the Minister appreciated the popularity of Homoeopathy in West Bengal. 
●    Shri Naik said that this laboratory has been established to develop new drugs and technologies in Homoeopathy to combat emerging challenges of viral diseases. 
●    In this context the Minister expressed his satisfaction of recognising this laboratory by the Calcutta University to undertake research work of the PhD students in Homoeopathy.
●    The laboratory, established at a cost of Rs. 8 crore is the only one in India for conducting basic and fundamental research in Homoeopathy for viral diseases like influenza, Japanese encephalitis, dengue, chikungunya and swine flu. 
●    New drugs and technologies would also be developed here to combat emerging challenges of viral diseases.
 

Current Affairs 12th September 2017: ENVIRONMENT NEWS

Environment Minister inaugurates training workshop on capacity building of Indian Zoo Veterinarians on Animal Health Management in Captivity 

Appreciating the difficulties faced by the Zoo Veterinarians in the diagnosis of diseases and treatment of the wild animals kept in captivity, Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan has said that advancements such as C.A.T scan and M.R.I must be used for the benefit of animals. 
●    Speaking at the inaugural session of the training workshop on “Capacity Building Of Indian Zoo Veterinarians On Animal Health Management In Captivity” here today, the Minister said that such capacity-building workshops should be organised more by the Central Zoo Authority, in association with organisations having expertise similar to that of the Smithsonian National Zoological Park. 
●    He reiterated that National Zoological Park, New Delhi must strive to become the best Zoological Park in the world.
●    Dr. Harsh Vardhan gave an assurance that the Government will adequately support the proposals from zoos that come up with ideas to develop model zoos. 
●    The Minister noted that interaction of the participants with the experts from the Smithsonian National Zoological Park will certainly help our zoos in adoption of modern trends in animal care. 
●    He also recalled the importance of the day, being the 125th anniversary of the historic speech of Swami Vivekananda at the Parliament of Religion held at Chicago in the year 1893.
●    The Minister also released two manuals on the occasion, namely Manual for Biological Sample Collection and Preservation for Genetic, Reproductive And Disease Analyses and Manual on Chemical Immobilization of Wild Animals.
 

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Important Current Affairs 11th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 11th September 2017

Current Affairs 11th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Airports Authority of India undertakes construction of Integrated Cargo Terminal at Imphal airport 


Airports Authority of India will undertake construction of Integrated Cargo Terminal at Imphal Airport after obtaining grant-in-aid under Trade Infrastructure for Export Scheme (TIES) of Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Govt. of India.
●    The Government of Manipur had planned to establish an Export Import Cargo Terminal (EICT) at Tulihal, Imphal Airport under ASIDE Scheme of the Ministry of Commerce & Industry. 
●    The proposed Integrated Cargo Terminal is expected to give a boost to the export of handicrafts items and perishable cargo. 
●    This will also help generate employment opportunities in the North Eastern region of the country, thereby fostering economic development of the region. 
●    In addition to this, the EICT will help establish better connectivity with South & Southeast Asia and give a boost to trade between India and the ASEAN countries.


Second State Start Up Conference in New Delhi Tomorrow 

The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, Government of India is organizing the Second State Startup Conference on 12 September, 2017 in New Delhi. 
●    The conference shall be inaugurated by the Minister of State, Shri C.R. Choudhary and shall be attended by senior functionaries from State/Union Territory Governments, Incubators/Accelerators, Funding agencies, VCs, Angel investors and Startups.
●    The discussions shall be conducted around four key themes related to key components of the startup ecosystem, namely:-
●    Governance reforms to be undertaken by States for Startups.
●    Incubation facilities in India and role of State Governments in developing these facilities.
●    Role of State Governments in setting up funds for Startups.
●    Making regulations easier for Startups.
●    Further, in order to provide momentum towards building up a positive Startup ecosystem in the States, a framework for ranking various States/ Union Territories on the basis of initiatives taken to promote Startups will also be discussed.


Secretary, DEA inaugurates the Workshop on the involvement of Multilateral Agencies in developing the capacity of Finance Departments of the States and Union Territories (UTs)


Shri Subhash Chandra Garg, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs (DEA), Ministry of Finance, Govt. of India inaugurated here today the familiarization Workshop on the involvement of Multilateral Agencies in developing the capacity of Finance Departments of the States and Union Territories (UTs). 
●    The Workshop was organized at the IMF South Asia Regional Training and Technical Assistance Centre (SARTTAC) in New Delhi. 
●    In his Inaugural Address, Shri Garg hoped that the States/ UTs will have a deeper understanding of the opportunities they can avail from SARTTAC and MDBs while the latter will have sufficient inputs from the States and Union Territories (UTs) to enable them to develop a comprehensive training module for the future.
●    The Workshop witnessed the participation of Additional Chief Secretaries/ Principal Secretaries of Finance Departments from several States/UTs, senior officers from the Ministry of Finance, and experts from IMF SARTTAC, World Bank, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and the New Development Bank (NDB) among others.
●    The workshop was organized with the aim of showcasing the potential of multilateral agencies like IMF SARTTAC, World Bank, AIIB and NDB in developing capacity of states and UTs.


Shri Ashwini Choubey inaugurates the 7th International Conference on Cost Effective Use of Technology in eHealth Care 

Shri Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Minister of State for Health & Family Welfare, today inaugurated the 7th International Conference and Workshop on Cost Effective Use of Technology in eHealth Care at AIIMS, New Delhi.
●    Speaking at the function, Shri Choubey underscored the urgency for harnessing Information Technology for better and effective healthcare delivery in the country. 
●    Referring to the Digital India initiative of the Honourable Prime Minister, he emphasised on the need for making optimal use of technology for delivering healthcare services to the people. 
●    The Minister further stated that that e-application in healthcare will reduce cost and save time for doctors and patients.
●    While alluding to the ancient healthcare system of India and the contribution of Sushruta, Charak and Dhanwantari, the Minister said that we must keep pace with the advances in Science and Technology so that the health care delivery becomes cost effective, accessible, affordable and more transparent.

India brews world’s most-expensive coffee


India, Asia’s third-largest producer and exporter of coffee, has started producing the world’s most-expensive coffee. 
●    It is being made on a small scale in Karnataka’s Coorg district, from the poop of civet cat.
●    The civet coffee, also known as luwak coffee, is expensive because of the uncommon method of producing it. 
●    It is produced from the coffee beans digested by the civet cat – the feces of the cat are then collected, processed and sold.
●    Civet coffee, a drink of the elite consumed widely in the Gulf nations and Europe, is sold for₹20,000-25,000/kg abroad.
●    Here in the country’s largest coffee-growing State, a start-up firm, Coorg Consolidated Commodities (CCC), has made a humble beginning by making the luxury coffee on a small scale, and has also decided to open a cafe to serve the brew locally.

Maha govt, MDFVPL ink MoU to set up processing plant


The Maharashtra government and Mother Dairy Fruit and Vegetable (MDFVPL), a subsidiary of National Dairy Development Board (NDDB), today signed an agreement to set up milk and milk processing plant in the state.
●    Under the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) Maharashtra government and NDDB, will implement a dairy development initiative in Vidarbha and Marathwada, under which milk producers in the region will be provided access to markets in Nagpur and Mumbai, a release said.
●    Besides, transferring the Nagpur dairy on lease and land for setting up a new dairy at Gove Bhiwandi, Maharashtra government will provide assistance including funds for a coordinated approach to improve productivity through animal breeding, nutrition and health, it added.
●    NDDB Chairman Dilip Rath said, MDFVPL has already initiated milk procurement operations in Amravati, Wardha, Nagpur, Chandrapur, Nanded, Osmanabad, Buldana and Yavatmal, he said.

SBI Life Insurance IPO receives Sebi approval

SBI Life Insurance Co. Ltd, a joint venture between State Bank of India and BNP Paribas Cardif, has received the market regulator’s approval for an initial public offering (IPO) to raise around Rs 8,500 crore, three people aware of the development said.
●    The life insurer is looking to launch the IPO on 20 September, the people said on condition of anonymity.
●    SBI Life filed its share sale prospectus with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) in July.
●    According to the document, SBI and BNP Paribas will sell 80 million and 40 million shares respectively, amounting to a combined 12% stake.
●    The insurance company has hired JM Financial Institutional Securities Ltd, Axis Capital Ltd, BNP Paribas, Citigroup Global Markets India Pvt. Ltd, Deutsche Equities India Pvt. Ltd, ICICI Securities Ltd, Kotak Mahindra Capital Co. Ltd and SBI Capital Markets Ltd to manage the share sale.


Paytm Payments Bank to launch debit card


Paytm Payments Bank is gearing up to launch debit card, its founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma announced in his Facebook account.
●    The Platinum RuPay debit card will be accepted across most online websites, apps, and stores. 
●    The card is designed to allow users to make payments through Paytm even on rival e commerce sites that do not offer the option.
●    According to RBI directives, payments banks are not allowed to issue credit cards or loans to customers. 
●    These banks can, however, issue ATM cards, debit cards, net-banking, and mobile-banking.
●    Meanwhile, the company board has approved a Rs 60-crore rights issue for its existing shareholders, including Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma, the firm said in a regulatory filing on Tuesday.
●    These investors include Sharma, One97 Communications Ltd and One97 Communications India Ltd, it added.

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Important Current Affairs 10th September 2017

Important Current Affairs 10th September 2017

Current Affairs 10th September 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Dr Jitendra Singh lauds distinguished contribution of Ahmedabad Space Application Centre 

The Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh has lauded the valuable contribution made by Space Application Center (SAC) Ahmedabad in providing original inputs for enriching the India’s Space Programme and also performing the role of value addition to several of the prestigious Space missions launched from ISRO, Sriharikota. 
●    Currently on a two-day visit to Gujarat, Dr Jitendra Singh held a detailed review meeting with the scientists of Space Application Centre led by its Director, Dr Tapan Misra. 
●    Dr Jitendra Singh made a special note of appreciation for some of the advanced technology developed at SAC, Ahmedabad with regard to origami lens, indigenously developed MMIC, Airborne low mass x-band Mini-SAR for strategic applications and disaster management, optical transceiver satellite mobile radio etc. 

Hon’ble Raksha Mantri Flags off Navika Sagar Parikrama 

Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman, Hon’ble Raksha Mantri flagged-off Indian Naval Sailing Vessel Tarini (INSV Tarini) with an all women crew from INS Mandovi boat pool, Goa at 01:00 PM today (10 Sep17). 
●    This is the first-ever Indian circumnavigation of the globe by an all-women crew and shall attempt to circumnavigate the globe on Indian Navy’s sailing vessel INSV Tarini. 
●    The crew is expected to return to Goa in April 2018, on completion of the voyage. 
●    The expedition will be covered in five legs, with stop-overs at 4 ports viz. Fremantle (Australia), Lyttleton (New Zealand), Port Stanley (Falklands), and Cape Town (South Africa). 
●    The event was attended by Shri Manohar Parrikar, Hon’ble Chief Minister of Goa, Admiral Sunil Lanba, the Chief of the Naval Staff, Vice Admiral AR Karve Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Southern Naval Command, Vice Admiral R Hari Kumar, Controller Personnel Services, IHQ MoD (Navy) besides other senior naval retired and serving officials as well as civilian dignitaries including family members of the crew and sailing enthusiasts.


Successful Flight Test of 3rd Generation Anti Tank Guided Missile – NAG 

India’s indigenously developed 3rd generation Anti Tank Guided Missile (ATGM), Nag has been successfully flight tested twice by DRDO on 8-9-2017 against two different targets in the ranges of Rajasthan.
●    The ATGM Nag missile has successfully hit both the targets under different ranges and conditions with very high accuracy as desired by the Armed Forces.
●    With these two successful flight trials, and the flight test conducted earlier in June in the peak of summer, the complete functionality of Nag ATGM along with launcher system NAMICA has been established and marked the successful completion of development trials of Nag Missile.


Minister of Railways Shri Piyush Goyal chairs a high-level meeting on Safety with Railway Board officials


Minister of Railways and Coal, Shri Piyush Goyal today held a marathon meeting with members of full Railway Board & Safety Directorate of Railway Board to comprehensively review Safety measures for train operations. 
●    A detailed presentation on Safety was made at the meeting. 
●    There was threadbare discussion on the subject and the root cause of repeated cases of train accidents in recent past was thoroughly analysed. 
●    In the meeting, the Minister emphasised that the safety is paramount and there cannot & should not be any compromise on this front.
●     Unmanned Level Crossings accounted for 34% of accidents in 2016-17
●    Derailments due to defects in tracks
●    The special focus of the meeting was to identify measures to reduce accidents due to derailments which has emerged as one of the major causes of Train accidents. 
●    All unmanned level crossings should be eliminated expeditiously on the entire Indian Railway network in a year’s time from now. 

Assam enacts a major labour reform, employers can now fire 300 staff without prior govt nod

In a major labour reform, Assam has enacted the Industrial Disputes (Assam Amendment) Bill, 2017, which authorises employers to retrench up to 300 employees without seeking approval of the government. 
●    Assam assembly passed the bill by a voice voteon Thursday. 
●    Congress MLA, Sherman Ali Ahmed walked out of the House after his demand for a division on the bill was not allowed. 
●    Ahmed had sought an amendment and suggested that instead of increasing the threshold limited it should be reduced to 50. 
●    Minister for labour and employment Pallab Lochan Das argued that the bill has not been enacted to facilitate retrenchment of employees, but deals with issue of closure.

Current Affairs 10th September 2017: ECONOMY

Premium will decrease in crop insurance scheme


The government’s farm insurance scheme is in for a revamp just about one year after launch, with the focus now on increasing competition among insurers, lowering the average premium and widening the scope of cover to include losses due to natural disasters. 
●    There is tremendous potential to improve the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana started last year and a high-level team has asked to make it more holistic in coverage and a win-win proposition for all parties, a senior government official working closely on revamping the scheme. 
●    Under the existing scheme, farmers pay 1.5 per cent to 2 per cent as premium for most crops compared with the average of 11 per cent charged by insurance companies, and the remainder is equally divided and paid by the Centre and the state. 
●    The official said coverage under the insurance scheme may be widened to include damage and loss to housing and property in the event of a natural disaster. 
●    So far, such damage was covered by the National Disaster Response Fund.


PNB customers to pay after 5 free ATM transactions from October


PNB customers will have to shell out money beginning October if they carry out more than five transactions a month from the bank’s ATMs.
●    At present, account holders of the country’s second largest public sector bank can make any number of transactions in a month, financial or non-financial, at the bank’s ATMs without attracting any charge.
●    “The number of free transactions and the charges beyond these free transactions for PNB customers on PNB ATMs have been revised. 
●    The revised charges will be effective from October 1, 2017,” Punjab National Bank (PNB) said in a notice to customers.
●    The bank said savings fund/current/overdraft account holders would all attract charges at Rs 10 per transaction beyond a limit of five times a month even if the PNB card holder makes the transaction at PNB ATM only.
●    Thus, customers will be charged beyond free limits for doing financial transaction where cash withdrawal is being made through ATM and non-financial transaction for issue of mini-statement.


Forex reserves jump on $400 billion mark


India's foreign exchange reserves inch closer to the $400 billion supported by strong inflows from foreign investors into indian markets along with movement in gold reserves with the central bank as per data from the RBI released on Friday. 
●    According to sources in the market, there could be a very rare movement of gold reserves with the RBI which went up by almost $750 million to reach $20.6 billion as on September 1. 
●    "The increase in gold reserves is a big positive and could be mainly driven by lessening of uncertainty over imposition of Goods and Services Tax which could have driven up demand for gold in the market," said Soumya Kanti Ghosh, chief economist, State Bank of India. 
●    Bankers say accumulation of gold as reserves is also a strong point for the central bank as it is considered to be a safe haven much like Dollar. 

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