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Important Current Affairs 21st November 2017

Important Current Affairs 21st November 2017

Current Affairs 21st November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Review Meeting to examine the draft of National Policy of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (Maps) of India to be held tomorrow 

Ministry of AYUSH is organising a day long review meeting on “Draft of National Policy of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (MAPs) of India” tomorrow at Pusa Campus, New Delhi. 
●    The Minister of State (Independent Charge) for AYUSH Shri Sripad Yesso Naik will address the inaugural session of this meeting. 
●    To improve and finalize the proposed draft Policy Document, National Medicinal Plant Board along with Federation of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Stakeholders are jointly organizing the one day review meeting.
●    Shri Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha, Secretary, Ministry of AYUSH; Ms. Shomita Biswas CEO, National Medicinal Plants Board; Mr. Pankaj Asthana, IGF, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change; Ms. Alka Bhargava, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare; Mr. Rajiv Kumar, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology will also be present on this occasion. 
●    This will be followed by 8 brainstorming sessions of more than 35 panellists on various topics.
●    The important areas of Medicinal Plants Sector like Forest & Conservation, Infrastructure, Marketing & Trade, Cultivation, Sustainable Harvesting & Post harvest Management, Quality & Certification, Research & Development, Regulatory & Legal framework, Networking & IT/Space Intervention, Finance and Information, Education & Communication and Capacity Building are proposed to be covered in the 8 sessions by specialists from all over the country.


India, the second largest fish producing country in the world


Union Agriculture and Farmer Welfare Minister, Shri Radha Mohan Singh has said that the previously implemented "Letter of Permit" or "L.O.P." system in the E.E.E. has been stopped since January, 2017. 
●    Besides, specific decisions have been taken to safeguard the interests of traditional fishermen in the area of EEZ beyond 12 nautical miles, which is regulated by the Government of India, such as the traditional fishers have been exempted from the fishing ban implemented during monsoon period in the EEZ; use of LED lights/other artificial lights for fishing as well as practice of bull-trailing or pair-trailing have been completely banned, recently on 10th November, 2017. 
●    The duration of fishing ban has also been increased from 47 days to 61 days, with the consent of all coastal State Governments.
●    Shri Singh has said that the scheme 'Blue Revolution' has been launched with the outlay of Rs. 300 crore for the integrated development of the Fisheries sector in the country. 
●    As a result, overall fish production has registered an increase of about 18.86% in comparison to the last three years, whereas inland fish production has registered a growth of more than 26%. 


J P Nadda inaugurates ‘1st World Conference on Access to Medical Products and International Laws for Trade and Health’ 


“India is deeply committed nationally and globally to achieving all public health goals and also focusing on developing India as a hub for affordable medical devices.” 
●    This was stated by Shri J P Nadda, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare at the inauguration of ‘1st World Conference on Access to Medical Products and International Laws for Trade and Health in the Context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’, here today. 
●    The Health Minister further stated that there is a need for promoting industry and academia collaboration for developing affordable medical products such that innovations and advances in medical sector reach a vast population. 
●    Smt. Anupriya Patel, Minister of State (HFW), Dr. V.K. Paul, Member, NITI Aayog, Govt. of India, Smt Preeti Sudan, Secretary (Health), Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, Secretary, Dept. of Health & Research (DHR) and DG, ICMR and Dr. Jagdish Prasad, Director General Health Services also graced the occasion. 
●    Highlighting the importance of transparency between regulatory authorities and pharma sector, Shri Nadda stated that the coordination between the National Regulatory Authorities and pharmaceutical sector will enable launch and registration of new health technologies. 

Word Class Center of Excellence in Maritime and Shipbuilding to come up in Mumbai and Vishakhapatnam 

A world class Center of Excellence in Maritime and Shipbuilding (CEMS) is being set up by Ministry of Shipping in collaboration with  Siemens and Indian Register of Shipping (IRS) under the Ministry’s flagship Sagarmala Programme. 
●    CEMS will have  campuses at Visakhapatnam and Mumbai, and will provide industry-relevant skill development, equip students with employable engineering and technical skills in the port and maritime sector and contribute to the Government of India’s ambitious Sagarmala programme. 
●    Shri Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Shipping, Road Transport & Highways, Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation had announced this at an event in Kochi last week. 
●    CEMS is being set up to meet the domestic skill requirement in ship design, manufacturing, operating and maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO),  and  aims to become an international nodal centre in South Asia, attracting students from neighboring countries like Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia for skill development in the Port and Maritime sector. 

Thaawar Chand Gehlot Visits Stalls of M/O Social Justice & Empowerment at Iitf-2017 


The Union Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment Shri Thaawar Chand Gehlot visited the annual fair of artisans from across the country, belonging to the weaker sections of the society, at the ongoing India International Trade Fair 2014. 
●    Speaking to the media on the occasion the Minister expressed his happiness that the Ministry has taken this innovative step to focus on the Ministry's developmental programmes and highlight its achievement through exhibitions by artisans. 
●    The Minister congratulated the artisans, who have come from almost all parts of the country and the Ministry, CMDs and MDs of the Apex Corporations and their officers for organizing the event and suggested that such exhibitions should be held from time to time in various cities where the artisans of the target groups can be invited to showcase their products and skill.     
●    The Minister also stressed the need for upgradation of skill and asked the Ministry and the Apex Corporations to take necessary action in the direction of providing skill development and including technological inputs in skill upgradation of the traditional art and craft of the target groups. 
●    40 stalls have been allotted to artisans form States/UTs of Assam, Karnataka, Gujrat, Delhi, Puducherry, Madhya Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal etc. to display and sell their products like wooden toys, pearl jewelry, dress material, shawls, Tie and dye products, Sanganer print, handloom, painting, wood inlay, Banarasi sarees, Bamboo craft, Sozni work, Leather items etc.

 
 Subhash Ghai Releases special edition of FTII academic journal "Lensight" at IFFI Goa. 

Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) Pune released a special issue of its quarterly academic journal LENSIGHT in Panaji, Goa today to coincide with the ongoing International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa.
●    Subhash Ghai, renowned film maker and FTII alumnus launched the October-December 2017 issue of the prestigious journal on film and media which has been standing out for its scholarly content since last 26 years. 
●    Bhupendra Kainthola, Director FTII Pune and Amit Tyagi (Dean Films) were present at the launch.
●    "LENSIGHT journal publishes articles and research papers by film scholars, researchers, academicians and various other subject experts in the field from India and abroad. 
●    There's a need to have more such journals to broaden and deepen the understanding of cinema", said Subhash Ghai in his address.

India's Dalveer Bhandari became International Court of Justice

Indian Judge Dalveer Bhandari has won the battle in the international court of The Netherlands.
●    Justice Dalveer Bhandari got 183 votes in General Assembly whereas Justice Bhandari got 15 votes in the Security Council.
●    Bhandari was contesting from Britain's candidate Christopher Greenwood.
●    This victory of India is very special because the match of the fifth judge of the international court was very interesting.
●    Justice Dalbir Bhandari was ahead in the General Assembly till 11th but he had fewer votes than Christopher Greenwood in the Security Council.
●    But in the 12th round, UK candidate Greenwood withdrew from the ground while looking forward to the defeat.
●    To become a judge in the international court, it was extremely important to win both the Security Council and the General Assembly.
●    After this, the 12th round was held on Monday, November 20 in which Dalveer Bhandari got 183 votes.
●    He also secured all 15 votes of the Council of Security.
 

Current Affairs 21st November 2017: AWARDS


Monetary Allowance for Widows of Gallantry Awards Recipients 


Recipients of the gallantry awards are entitled to the monetary allowance as per the letter of 1972 of Ministry of Defence (MoD), superseded by letter in 1995 of the MoD, which have been revised from time to time. 
●    As per the existing condition for grant of monetary allowance, the allowance shall be admissible to the recipient of the award and on his death to his widow lawfully married by a valid ceremony. 
●    The widow will continue to receive the allowance until her remarriage or death. 
●    The payment of the allowance will, however, be continued to a widow who remarries the late husband’s brother and lives a communal life with the living heir eligible for family pension. 
●    Representations were received from various quarters to remove the condition of the widow’s remarriage with the late husband’s brother for continuation of the monetary allowance. 
●    This issue was considered by the Government of India and it has now been decided to remove the condition of the widow’s remarriage with the late husband’s brother for continuation of the monetary allowance vide MoD letter dated November 16, 2017. 

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Important Current Affairs 20th November 2017

Important Current Affairs 20th November 2017

Current Affairs 20th November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

International Seminar on Indian Space Programme inaugurated in New Delhi

The International Seminar on Indian Space Programme: ‘Trends and Opportunities for Industry’ was inaugurated here today. 
●    The seminar is being organised by Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Antrix Corporation Limited (the commercial arm of ISRO), in coordination with Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
●    The objective of this two-day conference is to deliberate on the best practices, pursue the ongoing discussion process to support further work of India's Space Sector and facilitate arriving at coherent framework, where in India's Space Sector can start expanding the domestic and global opportunities through enhanced partnerships and collaborations. 
●    The seminar is aimed to highlight the achievements and major milestones of Indian Space Sector in recent past, and the future programs and plans. 
●    During the seminar, the stakeholders from industry, policy makers, thought leaders and academia, will brainstorm on the enabling and encouraging policies of Government of India to exploit the commercial space segment by Indian Industry targeting both domestic and international market.

Commissioning of New Electronic Interlocking at Kharagpur Junction on 19th November, 2017 


India’s largest state of the art, Electronic Interlocking (EI) system of 800 routes has been commissioned at Kharagpur station in West Bengal on 19th 2017 at 18:12 hrs. 
●    This EI system, also one of the largest in the World, replaces the old Route Relay Interlocking system with 423 routes.   
●    Kharagpur Junction in West Bengal, a gateway to the Eastern Metropolis of Kolkata from the South and the West, is one of the most important Railway stations of Eastern India. 
●    Everyday this station deals around 116 pairs of Mail/Express, goods and suburban trains with thousands of passengers.
●    Final work of commissioning was taken up during a block of 12 hours. 
●    Preparations for commissioning of this Electronic Interlocking commenced about 18 months back and involved hundreds of thousands of man-hours of installation and testing. 
●    Generally, work of this nature and magnitude, involving major yard remodeling, is commissioned by resorting to non-interlocked working for several days, resulting in severe disruption of railway traffic and public inconvenience from cancellation and late running of trains. 

Nagaland, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Dadra & Nagar Haveli & Daman & Diu sign MoU with Government of India under UDAY Scheme 


On the 2nd Anniversary of Ujwal DISCOM Assurance Yojana (UDAY) today, the Government of India signed four Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) under the Scheme with the State of Nagaland and with Union Territories (UTs) of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Dadra & Nagar Haveli & Daman & Diu for operational improvements. 
●    These State/UTs have joined only for operational improvement and shall not undergo financial restructuring/issue of bonds under the scheme. 
●    With the above, UDAY club has now grown to 27 states and 4 UTs.
●    An overall net benefit of approximately Rs. 551 crores, Rs. 18 crores, Rs. 13 crores and Rs. 10 crores respectively would accrue to the State of Nagaland & UTs of Andaman & Nicobar, Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu by opting to participate in UDAY, by way of cheaper funds for capex, reduction in AT&C and Transmission losses, interventions in energy efficiency, etc. during the period of turnaround.
●    The MoU paves way for improving operational efficiency of the Electricity Departments/DISCOM of the State/Union Territory. 

Health Ministry notifies amendment to Food Safety & Standards (Contaminants, Toxins & Residues) Regulations, 2011 


Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, through FSSAI, has notified amendment to Food Safety & Standards (Contaminants, Toxins & Residues) Regulations, 2011 on 7th November, 2017. 
●    This notification contains maximum permissible limits of various antibiotics in meat and meat products including chicken. 
●    Maximum permissible limits of 37 antibiotics and 67 other veterinary drugs are prescribed for chicken.
●    Through this notification, objections and suggestions have been invited from all the stakeholders including general public within 30 days of the notification i.e. by 6th December, 2017. 
●    The objections & suggestions received will be placed before the Scientific Panel of FSSAI on Residues of Pesticides and Antibiotics for consideration. 
●    The recommendations of the Scientific Panel will be considered by the Scientific Committee and then the Food Authority for approval after which it will be notified in the Gazette of India with the approval of the Hon’ble Minister.

Maruti to create 10 automated driving test centers in Delhi


The country's largest car maker, Maruti Suzuki India Ltd, is going to make an agreement with the Delhi Government to create automated driving test centers at ten places in the national capital.
●    Maruti Suzuki plans to build this automated driving test center in the next 12 months.
●    On this, the company will invest more than Rs 10 crore.
●    The company will operate and maintain these centers for the next three years.
●    These first test centers of their kind in the capital will have to be tracked scientifically in driving tests, with advanced high-definition cameras installed and integrated into IT networks.
●    Advanced video analytic technology will be used in these automated driving test centers, through which driving tests will be done and behavior will be studied while driving the applicant's vehicle.
●    Assignment of such candidates is done manually.
●    Maruti Suzuki's General Manager (CSR and Sustainability) Ranjit Singh said, "The process of issuing a driving license will be expedited to these centers as these will be utilized for technology.
●    There will be no scope for this mistake. This will improve the quality of quality because applicants having proper driving skills will get the license.

Current Affairs 20th November 2017: DAYS AND DATES

Radha Mohan Singh to inaugurate World Fisheries Day Celebrations 2017 

On 21st November 1997, the working fishermen and women representing World Forum of Fish Harvesters & Fish Workers from 18 countries met at New Delhi and established the World Fisheries Forum (WFF) advocating for a global mandate of sustainable fishing practices and policies. 
●    To commemorate this occasion, every year 21st November is celebrated all over the world as World Fisheries Day. 
●    In India, it is being celebrated for the fourth consecutive year. 
●    This year the Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries, Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, Government of India, is celebrating it on 21st November 2017 at the National Agricultural Science Centre (NASC) Complex, Pusa Road, New Delhi. 
●    This year’s theme is “2022 Ka Hai Sapna … Kisan Ki Aay Ho Dugna - Sankalp Se Siddhi”.
●    Shri Radha Mohan Singh, Union Minister for Agriculture & Farmers Welfare will inaugurate the World Fisheries Day Celebrations. 
●    Exhibition, technical sessions and information on Blue revolution Schemes are the main attractions of the event. 
●    On this occasion an exhibition showcasing the technological advances made and development achieved in Fisheries Sector would be organized and about 50 exhibitors will be participating. 

Current Affairs 20th November 2017: SUMMIT

Bar Leadership Summit on reforms in Indian Legal Services Sector 


The Indian National Bar Association (INBA) in collaboration with the Department of Commerce, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, and the Centre for Trade and Investment Law (CTIL), Indian Institute of Foreign Trade organized the ‘Bar Leadership Summit on Reforms in the Indian Legal Sector’ in New Delhi recently. 
●    The Minister of State for Human Resource Development (Higher Education), Shri Satya Pal Singh graced the occasion, senior officials from the Government of India and several leading lawyers and professionals from the legal sector were also present.
●    The Summit explored issues and concerns surrounding the liberalization of the Indian legal services sector.
●    The Minister for Commerce and Industry, Shri Suresh Prabhu who addressed the Summit through a video message emphasized on the growing importance of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) and encouraged the legal community to increasingly make use of this mechanism for enhancing the ease of doing business.
●    Shri Satya Pal Singh in his inaugural address, stressed on the importance of law as an enabler of justice and spoke on the importance of the impartiality and neutrality of the judicial system in India. He noted that the justice system should focus on the difficulties faced by victims in particular.

Current Affairs 20th November 2017: ECONOMY

India Signs Loan Agreement with World Bank for USD 100 Million for “Shared Infrastructure for Solar Parks Project” 

A Guarantee Agreement for IBRD/CTF loan of USD 98 million and Grant Agreement for USD 2 million for the “Shared Infrastructure for Solar Parks Project” was signed with the World Bank here today by Mr Sameer Kumar Khare, Joint Secretary (MI), Department of Economic Affairs on behalf of Government of India, and Mr Hisham A. Abdo, Acting Country Director, World Bank India, on behalf of the World Bank. 
●    A Loan Agreement was also signed by Mr K S Popli, Chairman and Managing Director, India Renewable Energy Development Agency Ltd. (IREDA) and Mr Hisham A. Abdo, Acting Country Director, World Bank India, on behalf of the World Bank. 
●    The project consists of two components viz. 
●    (i) Shared Infrastructure for Solar Parks (estimated total project cost of USD 100 million, including USD 75 million in IBRD loan and USD 23 million in CTF Loan) and 
●    (ii) Technical Assistance (USD 2 million in CTF Grant). 
●    The objective of the project is to increase solar generation capacity through establishment of large-scale parks in the country. 

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Important Current Affairs 19th November 2017

Important Current Affairs 19th November 2017

Current Affairs 19th November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Swachh Bharat Mission celebrates World Toilet Day Countrywide for galvanising people's participation for an Open Defecation Free India. 

On the occasion of World Toilet Day, large number of behaviour change and toilet usage activities were undertaken by the States and districts around the country as part of Swachh Bharat Mission. 
●    Processions were taken out, discussions were held, and school children joined in large numbers in several innovative activities to highlight the importance of toilet access and usage. 
●    If Santa Claus was the flavour of toilet education in Jharkhand, Punjab launched Swachhta Raths. 
●    Noted Sand Artist Sudarsan Pattnaik crafted a swachhata message on sand and a group of Assamese women inspired 371 villagers to build toilets. 
●    Secretary, Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Shri Parameswaran Iyer led centre- state team to complete the construction of twin pit toilets in Turkaulia village in East Champaran district of Bihar. 
●    The team had a three-day immersion exercise during which they extensively interacted with villagers directly, including women and students to generate demand for toilets. 
●    Village Mukhiyas from neighbouring GPs had a grand chaupal with the Secretary and his team. 
●    The Mukhiyas assured that they would help making the district ODF in six months of time. 

NCPCR celebrates ‘BAAL UTSAV’ as part of Hausla-2017, a festival for children living in CCIs across the country 


The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) today celebrated Baal Utsav as part of Hausla-2017, a week long festival for children living in Child Care Institutions across the country being celebrated by the Ministry of Women and Child Development in New Delhi. 
●    About 1000 children from such institutions participated in today’s programme. 
●    The main objective of the programme was to promote child participation and showcase their talents in other creative activities. 
●    Non-Government Organizations from Delhi and NCR region also took part in the celebration. 
●    At the outset, Smt. Stuti Kacker, Chairperson, NCPCR, welcomed all the dignitaries and participants. 
●    Minister of State for Women and Child Development, Dr. Virendra Kumar expressed happiness at the celebration and felt delighted to see the presence of a large number of children. 
●    Dr. Virendra Kumar said that children are the key to success and development of the country. 
●    Justice M.B. Lokur, Hon’ble Judge, Supreme Court of India, expressed concern over the rise in crimes against children. 

vadilal ice cream ready to be sold, owners can get 600 crore

India's oldest ice cream brand is about to be sold. 
●    Ahmedabad’s 8 decades-old company vadilal has Gandhi’s family  ownership. 
●    Vadilals company is thinking about removing promoters completely.
●    In Frozen food segment, vadilals have the most market share. 
●    In Bombay stock Exchange’s listed company 64 percent share is with Vadilal.
●    Vadilals has chosen the Lincoln international as investment banker, which wi contact potential buyers .
●    Right now only one promoter wants to get out of company who has maximum shares
●    Virender Gandhi can sell their stock of the company.

Nilekani, will donate half the property

Infosys chairman Nandan Nilekani and his wife Rohini have signed 'Giving Pledge' with Bill Gates and Warren Buffett's initiative.
●    Those who sign on this, have to donate at least half the property for philanthropy during their lifetime or through will.
●    Before Nilekani couple in India, Wipro chairman Azim Premji, Kiran Majumdar Shaw of Biocon and promoter of Shobha Developers PNC Menon have signed this.
●    Nilekani couple told that they have been doing philanthropy for almost 20 years, but after signing the 'Giving Plays' they have joined the tribe of many such people who are thinking about solving the problems of the world. .
●    Gates said that philanthropy is a difficult task, it forces you to think about your own death.
 

Current Affairs 19th November 2017: DAYS AND DATES

237th Corps of Engineers Day 


237th Corps of Engineers Day was celebrated on 18 Nov 2017. 
●    In a solemn Ceremony organised at ‘Amar Jawan Jyoti’, Lt Gen Suresh Sharma, Engineer-in-Chief along with other serving and retired officers & men laid wreaths and paid homage to the brave soldiers who sacrificed their life for the country. 
●    The Corps of Engineers provides combat engineering support, develops infrastructure for armed forces and other defence organisations, and maintains connectivity along our vast borders besides providing succor to populace during natural disasters. 
●    These tasks are executed through four pillars of the Corps - Combat Engineers, Military Engineering Service, Border Roads Organisation and Military Survey.
●    The raising day is celebrated to commemorate raising of first Engineer Company in 1780. 
●    The modern day Corps of Engineers has three groups i.e, Madras Sappers, Bengal Sappers and Bombay Sappers which were amalgamated into the Corps on 18 Nov 1932. 
●    Since its inception, history is replete with colossal exemplary contributions of the Corps of Engineers both in war and peace. 
●    As part of celebrations, a function was also organised at E-in-C’s Branch, Kashmir House, New Delhi to honour the achievers of the Corps in the fields of technical competence, professional excellence, sports and adventures. 

Current Affairs 19th November 2017: ECONOMY

Foreign investors invested $ 2 billion in shares in November


Foreign investors have pumped in a whopping over USD 2 billion in the Indian equity markets this month so far, enthused by government’s announcement of recapitalising PSU banks, improvement in global sentiment and stable currency.
●    This follows a net inflow of over ₹3,000 crore in stock markets last month. 
●    Prior to that, FPIs had pulled out more than ₹24,000 crore in the previous two months (August and September).
●    According to depository data, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) infused a net sum of ₹14,348 crore (USD 2.2 billion) in equities during November 1-17.
●    However, they pulled out ₹1,287 crore from the debt market during the period under review.
●    The inflow was further triggered with the news of India faring well in the World Bank’s ease of doing business index and a jump in core sector growth, he added.
●    Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on October 24 announced the PSU bank recapitalisation programme of ₹2.11 lakh crore, out of which ₹1.35 lakh crore will come from recap bonds, and the rest from markets and budgetary support.

Narayana Hrudayalaya plans Rs500 crore expansion, to enter Africa


Leading private sector hospital chain Narayana Hrudayalaya has chalked out a Rs500 crore expansion plan, which will see it entering high-value markets in the country over next three years as well as making a foray into Africa.
●    For overseas expansion, Raghuvanshi said, they have signed agreements with local partners in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi, for which they have also signed an agreement with an international financial institution for funding. This will be a greenfield project.
●    The domestic expansion will be in Delhi-NCR and Narayana will be commissioning a 200-bed hospital in Gurugram in January, he said, adding the capacity will be ramped up to 350 beds over next one-and-a-half years. 
●    Narayana recently opened its first hospital in Mumbai—the SRCC Children’s Hospital, which is the only paediatric hospital in its portfolio. 
●    The super-speciality tertiary care for children has already completed 300 surgeries and screened 5,000 children in the outpatient department.
●    Narayana has invested Rs55 crore in Mumbai hospital in the first phase and an additional Rs25 crore will be invested to increase capacity to 380 beds in the second phase, said Raghuvanshi. 
●    The company had picked up 71% stake in Health City Cayman Islands for $32 million in 2015. 

Swiss parliamentary panel okays auto info exchange with India


Paving the way for India to get instant access to details on Indians with Swiss accounts, a key parliamentary panel in Switzerland has approved an automatic information exchange pact between the two countries.
●    The Commission for Economic Affairs and Taxes of the Council of States — a key panel of the Swiss Parliament’s Upper House — approved the proposed pact with India as also with 40 other countries, but suggested strengthening the provisions for individual legal claims.
●    It has asked the Swiss government to submit to Parliament an amendment “to strengthen concrete individual legal protection and to ensure that no exchange of information can take place for individual cases where a violation of essential legal claims is likely”, as per the minutes of its last meeting on November 2.
●    The proposal will now be submitted for approval from the upper chamber of Swiss Parliament, the Council of States, in the winter session beginning November 27.
●    The pact will help provide a continuous access to details about alleged black money hoarders in once-all-secret Swiss banks. 

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Important Current Affairs 18th November 2017

Important Current Affairs 18th November 2017

Current Affairs 18th November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS


Ministry of Health has implemented the daily dose of medicine for the treatment of tuberculosis (TB)

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has recently announced to implement the daily dose of medicine for the tuberculosis sufferers throughout the country under the revised National TB Control Program (RNTCP).
●    The ministry had earlier asked to take the drug supplements three times a week for the treatment of tuberculosis, but now it has been decided to change the treatment for TB patients, and in the weeks of using the prescribed dosage of mixed medicines for treatment Daily dosage has been arranged in place of three bars.
●    This change will change the attitude of fighting against tuberculosis.
●    Due to tuberculosis, 4.2 million people die every year.
●    Tuberculosis-resistant daily mixed drug dose will be provided to doctors, private practitioners and private practitioners so that the doses of drugs can be given to those patients who are treating them according to their convenience in the private sector.
●    The Ministry of Health will extend it to all major hospitals, IMAs, IAPs, and professional medical organizations to make the dose of mixed medicines available daily to all TB patients.
●    The specialty of this method of treatment is that all patients will be given Ethan Booth in constant stages. Medicines will be given daily.
 

India's domestic air travelers created record, 1.04 crore passengers in October


Domestic air travelers of India made new records in the festival season.
●    According to the DGCA, 1.04 crore people used aircraft in the country to travel somewhere in October.
●    This is the largest figure of domestic travelers in a month.
●    This has happened 2 times so far when more than 10 million people made air travel in a month.
●    Earlier in May, 1.5 million people made domestic air travel.
●    In October, the number of domestic air travelers increased by 20.5 percent, last year 86.7 million people had traveled.
●    Between January and October this year, 9.5 million people have traveled in the country, which is 17.3% more than the same period last year.

Moody the public sector of the nine companies rating extended


The foreign currency issuer ratings of Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL), Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL), Indian Oil Corp (IOC) and Petronet LNG Limited (PLL) was upgraded to Baa2 from Baa3, the same as India’s sovereign rating upgrade. 
●    In step with India rating upgrade, Moody’s Investors Service today upgraded issuer ratings of nine state-owned firms including oil producer ONGC, refiners IOC, BPCL and HPCL, power generator NTPC and gas utility GAIL. 
●    The foreign currency issuer ratings of Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL), Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL), Indian Oil Corp (IOC) and Petronet LNG Ltd (PLL) was upgraded to Baa2 from Baa3, the same as India’s sovereign rating upgrade. 
●    The outlook on these ratings have been revised to stable from positive, Moody’s said in a statement. For Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), which enjoyed a rating higher than the sovereign, the foreign currency issuer rating has been upgraded to Baa1 from Baa2. 
●    “The outlook is stable,” it said. Simultaneously, ratings of NTPC, hydroelectric producer NHPC, National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) and GAIL India have also been raised to Baa2 stable.
●    

Jio preparing for entry in e-commerce market

After getting success in the telecom sector, Reliance Jio is preparing to land in the e-commerce field to take advantage of its huge network and crores of customers.
●    The company is trying to make a model with grocery stores, through which people will be able to buy with the help of Geo Money or Text Message.
●    The company is currently running a pilot project for this.
●    This project is currently underway in Mumbai, Chennai and Ahmedabad.
●    It includes many stores and leading brands. Next year, Geo can launch it.
●    The company has created 13.2 million subscribers within a year.
●    Geo is going to enter online from offline, which is a warning to online payment companies like PettyMon and Phonepea.
●    Companies such as PettyM and Phoneme are also doing similar deals with grocery stores.


Government will provide Rs 2,000 crore for computerization of Primary Agricultural Credit Societies

A senior official of the Ministry of Agriculture said today that the government will provide Rs 2,000 crore for computerization of Primary Agricultural Cooperative Credit Society PACS.
●    This will facilitate the benefits of digital technology to cooperative societies working at grass root level.
●    Ashish Bhutani, senior official of the Ministry of Agriculture, gave this information today.
●    He said in a statement that due to this technology, transparency will be ensured as well as employment generation will be ensured.
●    Therefore adopting digital technology is the only way through which cooperatives can maintain their relevance.
●    Rajiv Siwach, General Manager, National Agricultural and Rural Development Bank, said that PACs should develop a business format so that they can provide many services.
●    He said that cooperative banks should also have an ATM so they can attract customers.
 

Current Affairs 18th November 2017: ECONOMY

Approval of the work plan of Financial Year 2018 of SARTTAAC

Interim meeting of the Steering Committee of the South Asia Regional Training and Technical Support Center (SERTAC) of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) was held in New Delhi today.
●    After its inauguration in February, 2017, its activities were reviewed and the work plan of the financial year 2018 was reviewed.
●    After the inauguration of SARTTAAC, the meeting was held on February 13, 2017.
●    Officials of all the 6 member countries participated in the meeting with development partner representatives (EU, UK, Australia and USAAD) and IMF Staff.
●    In his inaugural address, Special Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Shri Dinesh Sharma said that to meet the possibilities of SARTTAC, there is a need for right and positive ideas.
●    Members of the Steering Committee welcomed the effective performance of the speed and capacity development of SARTTAC (training and technical support).
●    SARTTAC has completed all the tasks in a short time.
●    The committee appreciated the training given to member countries and various officials of India and training in the country.

Reliance will raise 117 billion to reduce debt costs

Reliance Industries is going to raise $ 1.8 billion from the combustion of offshore bonds and syndicated debt, to reduce its cost of high debt. Reliance wants to take advantage of the low US Treasury rate. 
●    In terms of market capitalization, Reliance, the country’s largest company, can cut its debt costs by almost half.
●    The maturity of these bonds would be of 10 years. 
●    Reliance Dollar is raising $ 800 million via bond issue. 
●    The company will acquire one billion dollars from syndicated commercial loans. 
●    This loan will be taken from a group of international lenders at a lower cost than the existing loan. 
●    This company of Mukesh Ambani, the second richest person in Asia, is working on a big debt refinancing. Earlier, the company had raised the money through the Parabolic Bond in 2013.

Current Affairs 18th November 2017: GLOBAL NEWS

Minister of Commerce and Industry will participate in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization meeting in Russia


Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Shri Suresh Prabhu is on a trip to Russia from 15 to 17 November 2017 to participate in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization meeting.
●    In this meeting, members of the economic and foreign trade of member countries participate.
●    India became a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in June 2017.
●    This is the first conference of ministers to be held on business after becoming a full member.
●    This is the first Russia visit of Mr. Suresh Prabhu as Minister of Trade and Industry.
●    During his visit, the Minister met Ms. Veronika Nikitina, member of the Trade Council of Eurasian Economic Commission (EAEC) on November 15 and discussed the FTA and Trade Cooperation between India and Eurasian Economic Commission.
●    Mr. Prabhu interacted with the Russian business leaders on November 16 during a Round Table Meeting.
●    In the Round Table meeting, mainly steel, railways, engineering goods, financial services, nuclear power, and agricultural companies took part.
●    The Minister gave information about the ease of doing business in India and the priorities of natural gas, energy sector, railways and agriculture marketing.
 

MOU with South Korea's Miriyang City of Quality Council of India

The Quality Council of India QCI has signed an MoU with Miriyang City of South Korea for the promotion of Yoga Scheme.
●    Under this yoga scheme, schools that provide yoga professionals and yoga will be certified.
●    The AYUSH Ministry has started Yoga Certification Scheme for Yoga Professionals.
●    The Ministry had given the management and operation of this scheme to the Pulitzer Council.
●    The scheme was started at the time of International Yoga Day in June 2015.
●    On MOU, Anil Relia, CEO of NBC, QCI and Mayor Park-Two Ho of Mirayang City of South Korea signed.
●    On this occasion representatives of various organizations of South Korea and many officials from the AYUSH Ministry from India were present.
●    The Mayor of Miryang City said on this occasion, "We have signed MoU and we will encourage Indian Yoga in Korea."
 

Current Affairs 18th November 2017: DEFENCE

Seminar on Cyber Security in New Delhi in the context of Indian Navy


A seminar on cyber security in the context of the Indian Navy was held on November 17, 2017 in New Delhi by Dr. D.S. Kothari .
●    The seminar was organized by the Directorate of Information Welfare, Ministry of Defense (Navy), Integrated Headquarters.
●    Over 350 defense personnel attended the seminar, which included officers of various directors of the Ministry of Defense (Navy), Officers and soldiers of the Naval Units and other naval stations of Delhi area, officers related to it, dignitaries and cyber security professionals. 
●    Director General of Naval Operations Vice Admiral S.N. Ghormam (AVSM, NM) welcomed the delegates present in the seminar and presented the subject matter.
●    Naval Chief Admiral Sunil Lamba (PVSM, AVSM, ADC) gave the keynote address.
●    In his address, he has his views on cybersecurity and challenges related to the Indian Navy.
●    They emphasized the use of social media and smart devices with responsibility. National Cyber Security Coordinator, Dr. Gulshan Rai also gave special speeches.

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Important Current Affairs 17th November 2017

Important Current Affairs 17th November 2017

Current Affairs 17th November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Air Chief inaugurates SWAC Commanders’ conference 


The Annual Commanders’ Conference of South Western Air Command (SWAC) was inaugurated by Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa PVSM AVSM YSM VM ADC Chief of the Air Staff on 17 Nov 2017 at Gandhinagar. 
●    The Commanders of Stations located in Rajasthan, Gujarat and Maharashtra states attended the conference.
●    Earlier, the Chief of Air Staff accompanied by Mrs Kamalpreet Dhanoa, President Air Force Wives Welfare Association (AFWWA) were received by Air Marshal RK Dhir PVSM AVSM VM ADC, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, SWAC and Mrs Neelam Dhir, President AFWWA (Regional) at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport this morning.
●    On arrival at HQ SWAC, Gandhinagar, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa inspected an impressive Guard of Honour.
●    In his inaugural address, the Chief of the Air Staff acknowledged the high degree of professionalism and hard work displayed by the Air Warriors of SWAC in achieving the assigned goals.
●    He highlighted the need for maintaining full operational preparedness with optimal utilization of available resources. 
●    He emphasized the need for Air Warriors to keep abreast with the latest technologies and to focus on the associated challenges while the IAF marches ahead with major upgradation of capabilities and infrastructure. 

ICAO Carries out Universal Safety Oversight Audit for India
Under the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme, a five member audit team carried out the audit of India in areas of Personal Licensing, Airworthiness, Operations, Legislation and Organization from 6th to 16th November.
●    The audit involved verification of response provided by DGCA against protocol questions made available by ICAO. 
●    Verification process consisted of checking the documentary evidence, perusal of relevant files, discussions with relevant officers and industry visits. 
●    Teams visited Chennai, Mumbai and CATC, Allahabad to ascertain the implementation of safety related procedures as per regulations laid down by DGCA in line with ICAO annexes/documents.
●    As per preliminary feedback, the audit team was satisfied with the safety system put in place by the safety regulator. 
●    As per procedure laid down by ICAO, the audit team presents its report to the headquarter team and draft report is made available to the state in about 90 days. 
●    The state is required to provide its comment and draw its action plan on various aspects of the report and make it available to ICAO within 45 days. 

India committed to its Renewable Energy Targets to provide Equitable Sustainable Development 


The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Government of India, in partnership with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), organised a panel discussion on ‘Innovative Financing and Market Evolution to achieve 175 GW renewables by 2022’ on 16th November 2017 at the India Pavilion at Conference of Parties (CoP) 23, Bonn, Germany.
●    Speaking about the Government’s interventions, Dr. P.C. Maithani, Adviser, MNRE said that policies are being drafted on a continuous basis to address challenges as the market evolves. 
●    Giving examples of how the question is no longer about availability of finances but that of cheap finances, Shri K.S. Popli, CMD, Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency Limited (IREDA) said that the markets have matured and one indicator of that is seen in how the bond markets have progressed.
●    Dr. Ajay Mathur, DG, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) stressed upon the need to push for higher research in storage technology which could complement the infirm renewable power. 

Nitin Gadkari lays foundation stone for Cochin Shipyard’s Rs 970-crore International Ship Repair Facility 

The Minister of Shipping, Road Transport & Highways and Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Shri Nitin Gadkari has said that Kochi is all set to become a global ship repair hub. 
●    He was speaking at Cochin today, after laying the  foundation stone for a Rs 970-crore International Ship Repair Facility (ISRF) for Cochin Shipyard Limited. 
●    The facility is being built at Cochin Port Trust where CSL has leased out a 40-acre plot for the project.
●    The International Ship Repair facility will be a State of the Art facility that can handle a major chunk of small and medium sized vessels plying in India. 
●    CSL will set up a ship lift system of size 130 m x 25 m with lifting capacity of 6000 tonnes and 6 work stations. 
●    The facility can repair up to 85 vessels, and CSL will thereby  be almost doubling the number of ships that can be repaired every year.             

Current Affairs 17th November 2017: ECONOMY 

Moody’s upgrade Sovereign Credit Rating of India to Baa2 from Baa3 


Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") has upgraded the Government of India's local and foreign currency issuer ratings to Baa2 from Baa3 and changed the outlook on the rating to stable from positive. 
●    India’s rating has been upgraded after a period of 13 years. 
●    India’s sovereign credit rating was last upgraded in January 2004 to Baa3 (from Ba1).
●    Government of India welcomes the upgrade and believes, as rightly noted by the Moody’s that this is in recognition of major economic and institutional reforms undertaken by Government of India. 
●    Moody’s have also rightly recognized the Government’s commitment to macro stability which has led to low inflation, declining deficit and prudent external balance and Government’s fiscal consolidation programme which has resulted in a reduction of fiscal deficits from 4.5% of GDP in 2013-14 to 3.5% in 2016-17 and its consequential sobering impact on general government debt. 
●    Government intends to stay the course on fiscal consolidation in the medium term.

Ram Vilas Paswan grants permission to display revised MRP due to reduction of rates of GST up to 31st December, 2017 

On account of implementation of GST w.e.f. 1st July, 2017, there may be instances where the retail sale price of a pre-packaged commodity is required to be changed. 
●    In this context, Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Shri Ram Vilas Paswan had allowed the manufacturers or packers or importers of pre-packaged commodities to declare the revised retail sale price (MRP) in addition to the existing retail sale price (MRP), for three months w.e.f. 1st July 2017 to 30th September, 2017. 
●    Declaration of the changed retail sale price (MRP) was allowed to be made by way of stamping or putting sticker or online printing, as the case may be.
●    Use of unexhausted packaging material/wrapper was also been allowed upto 30th September, 2017 after making the necessary corrections.
●    As Government has reduced the rates of GST on certain specified items, Shri Ram Vilas Paswan, Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, has granted permission under sub-rule (3) of rule 6 of the Legal Metrology (Packaged Commodities) Rules, 2011, to affix an additional sticker or stamping or online printing for declaring the reduced MRP on the pre-packaged commodity. 
●    In this case also, the earlier Labelling/ Sticker of MRP will continue to be visible.

Current Affairs 17th November 2017: DAYS AND DATES

Qaumi Ekta Week will be observed from November 19-25, 2017 


 With a view to foster and reinforce the spirit of Communal Harmony, National Integration and pride in vibrant, composite culture and nationhood, the “Qaumi Ekta Week” (National Integration Week) will be observed all over the country, from the 19th to 25th November, 2017.  
●    The week long programmes to be observed during Qaumi Ekta Week will be as under:
●    November 19, 2017 will be observed as National Integration Day and programmes like meetings, symposia and seminars will be organized to emphasize the themes of secularism, anti-communalism and non-violence.
●    November 20, 2017 will be observed as Welfare of Minorities Day and Items of the 15 Point Programme are emphasized on this day. 
●    November 21, 2017 will be observed as Linguistic Harmony Day. 
●    November 22, 2017 will be observed as Weaker Sections Day and meetings and rallies will be organized to highlight programmes under various Governments which help SCs/STs and weaker sections with particular emphasis on the distribution of surplus land to landless labourers.
●    November 23, 2017 will be observed as Cultural Unity Day and cultural functions will be organized to present the Indian tradition of unity in diversity and for promoting cultural conservation and integration.
●    November 24, 2017 will be observed as Women’s Day. 
●    November 25, 2017 will be observed as Conservation Day and several meetings and functions will be organized to emphasise the growing need for awareness and action to conserve the environment.

Current Affairs 17th November 2017: INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS

Indo-Bangladesh Exercise ‘SAMPRITI 2017’ comes to an end 

Closing ceremony for the seventh Indo-Bangladesh joint exercise SAMPRITI was held at Counter Insurgency and Jungle Warfare School, Vairengte in Mizoram today. 
●    Exercise SAMPRITI is an important bilateral defence cooperation endeavour between India and Bangladesh. 
●    Major General Md Mushfiqur Rahman of Bangladesh Army and Major General M S Ghura of the Indian Army presided over the ceremony.
●    The exercise is aimed at strengthening and broadening the aspects of interoperability and cooperation between the Indian and Bangladesh Armies while working together in a counter-insurgency and counter-terrorism environment under the UN mandate. 
●    Exercise was conducted under the aegis of the Red Horns Division of Gajraj Corps and had two distinct components which included Command Post Exercise (CPX) and Field Training Exercise (FTX).
●    Troops from 38 East Bengal Regiment of Bangladesh Army and Mahar Regiment of Indian Army represented respective Armies during the exercise. 
 

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Important Current Affairs 16th November 2017

Important Current Affairs 16th November 2017

Current Affairs 16th November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

President of India presents Standards to the 223 Squadron and the 117 Helicopter Unit of the Indian Air Force 

The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, presented Standards to the 223 Squadron and the 117 Helicopter Unit of the Indian Air Force at the Air Force Station, Adampur, Punjab today (November 16, 2017). 
●    This is his first visit to Punjab after taking over as President of India.
●    Speaking on the occasion, the President said that the contribution of Punjab to our armed forces, and of our armed forces to our nation, has been enormous.
●    That is why, in his role as the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, he was glad to visit Punjab for awarding Standards to the 223 Squadron and the 117 Helicopter Unit of the Indian Air Force. 
●    He stated that both units have a history of professional excellence. 
●    The nation honours them with a deep sense of gratitude and appreciation for dedication and courage in the face of adversity.

Cabinet approves MoU between India and Poland for the promotion of Civil Aviation Cooperation 


The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given its approval for signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Poland for the Promotion of Civil Aviation Cooperation. 
●    The MoU will be signed on behalf of the two countries after its approval by the two Governments. 
●    The MoU would be for a term of five years. 
●    The objective of the MoU is to recognize the mutual benefit of Cooperation in the field of Civil Aviation having particular significance in establishing and improving Regional Air Connectivity in India. 
●    Apart from this both sides will recognize the mutual benefits of environmental testing or approvals, flight simulators monitoring and approvals, aircraft maintenance facilities approvals, maintenance personnel approvals and aircrew members approvals. 
●    The main areas of this Memorandum of Understanding to promote ad facilitate mutual cooperation are as under: 
●    Support in the civil aviation market by reviewing any legal and procedural issues which may adversely affect cooperation between India and Poland. 
●    Exchange of information and expertise between the Ministries and respective Civil Aviation Authorities related to aviation regulations, regional air operations, airworthiness requirements and safety standards to enhance safety and security of air transport.
 

Cabinet approves the establishment of the National Anti-profiteering Authority under GST 


The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given its approval for the creation of the posts of Chairman and Technical Members of the National Anti-profiteering Authority (NAA) under GST, following up immediately on yesterday's sharp reduction in the GST rates of a large number of items of mass consumption.
●    This paves the way for the immediate establishment of this apex body, which is mandated to ensure that the benefits of the reduction in GST rates on goods or services are passed on to the ultimate consumers by way of a reduction in prices. 
●    The establishment of the NAA, to be headed by a senior officer of the level of Secretary to the Government of India with four Technical Members from the Centre and/or the States, is one more measure aimed at reassuring consumers that Government is fully committed to take all possible steps to ensure the benefits of implementation of GST in terms of lower prices of the goods and services reach them.
●    It may be recalled that effective from midnight of 14th November, 2017 the GST rate has been slashed from 28% to 18% on goods falling under 178 headings. 
●    There are now only 50 items which attract the GST rate of 28%. Likewise, a large number of items have witnessed a reduction in GST rates from 18% to 12% and so on and some goods have been completely exempt from GST. 

Agreement for construction of mobile dive exploration Sonar by Navy

Under the "Make in India" policy of the Central Government, the Navy has signed the agreement with the Tata Power Strategic Engineering Division on November 15, 2017 and has signed an agreement for mobile dive investigation Sonar under the Construction (Indian) category.
●    This is the second agreement by the Navy to promote the efforts of indigenization in the defense sector.
●    Earlier, the Navy had signed the agreement for the surveillance radar in the warship.
●    The Dynamic Diver Exploration bin Sonar will be constructed by Tata Power SED through technology transfer from DSIT Israel in Bangalore.
●    Under the "Make in India" program of the Central Government, the navy has created a program to promote indigenization and to include arms and censors under the category of construction (Indian).
●    The involvement of the submarine explorer Sonar Navruna will increase the surveillance capacity during the sea campaign.
●    The purchase of these sonar will also help Navy to save the war veterans from the dangers.

Mission Innovation Smart Grids Workshop 

In order to combat the growth of green house gas emission, the world is fast moving to the increased use of renewable energy sources.  
●    However, there is increased concern that high penetration of renewable energy can cause disruptions in the existing power network due to their intermittent nature.  
●    Technology solutions are, therefore, needed to address the challenges related to development design, integration, operation and management of grids which allows use of upto 100 percent renewable energy.
●    Mission Innovation challenge on Smart Grids is collectively working to enable future smart grids powered by renewables.  
●    20 participating countries with India, Italy and China as Co-lead are working together to realise this aspiration.  
●    An international workshop is being organised during 16-19th November, 2017 at New Delhi to define research priorities and develop action plan for time bound action for realisation of these objectives. 

R.K. Singh launches ‘Saubhagya’ Web-Portal – a Platform for Monitoring Universal Household Electrification 


Shri R.K. Singh, Minister of State (IC) for Power and New & Renewable Energy, launched the Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana – ‘Saubhagya’ Web Portal here today. 
●    Addressing the media during the event, Shri Singh said that the Saubhagya Dashboard is a platform for monitoring household electrification progress, which would disseminate information on Household Electrification Status (State, District, village-wise), Household Progress on live basis, State-wise Target vs Achievement, Monthly Electrification Progress, etc.
●    The Minister said that achieving electrification of 4 crore households is a big challenge, nevertheless the Government is committed to achieve this target by December 2018, with the cooperation of all the States. 
●    This would, in turn, bring about a huge improvement in the Quality of Life of the Citizens of India. 
●    The Government is bringing a change in the Power ecosystem in the Country by pushing towards mandatory metering of all new electrical connections through pre-paid or smart meters. 
●    This would make paying of electricity bills viable for the poor, reduce power losses and increase compliance in paying electricity bills, Shri Singh said.
●    All States have been asked to announce the schedules of the village camps to be held and hence create awareness among the people about the one-stop facility for getting electricity connections.

Current Affairs 16th November 2017: SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Cabinet approves agreement between India and Belarus on Scientific and Technological 


The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been apprised of the Agreement between the Indian National Science Academy (INSA) and the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus (NASB) on Scientific and Technological Cooperation for mutual benefit in the areas of science, technology, agriculture, etc. 
●    The Agreement was exchanged on 12th September, 2017 at New Delhi during the visit of Belarus President H.E. Mr. Alexander Lukashenko.
●    The Agreement is aimed at identifying, assessing, developing and commercializing globally competitive technologies from India and Belarus. 
●    It will support institutions in both countries by way of research, technology transfers, exchange of visits and joint workshops leading to scientific and economic benefit.

Current Affairs 16th November 2017: DAYS AND DATES

Two-day 12th North East Business Summit inaugurated in New Delhi

The Two-day “12th North-East Business Summit” was inaugurated here today. The summit aims to explore the scope for business opportunities in the North-Eastern region of India. 
●    Focus areas are Infrastructure and Connectivity with Public Private Partnerships, Skill Development, Financial Inclusion, Services Sector Development- Particularly in Tourism, Hospitality & Food Processing. 
●    The Summit is being organised by the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC), with Manipur being the state partner for the event.
●    Speaking on the inauguration of the summit, the Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh said that North Eastern states have lot of potential which is still unexplored. 
●    He said that we need to explore this unexplored potential for the development of the region and the development of the country as a whole. 
●    If one region of the country is underdeveloped, the country cannot be developed, he added. 
●    He said that the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi accords high priority to the peripheral states. 

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Important Current Affairs 15th November 2017

Important Current Affairs 15th November 2017

Current Affairs 15th November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Housing Sector shortage close to 10 million units-to be addressed through PMAY

Sh. Hardeep S Puri, the Minister of State (I/C) Housing and Urban Affairs has stated that the Real Estate Act is a pioneering legislation which will have a long term transformative effect. 
●    “We have put in place an eco-system to ensure that real estate sector is properly governed and buyers are empowered. 
●    I have absolutely no doubt that the history of Real Estate in India will be written in two segments, pre and post RERA. 
●    The pre-RERA phase was characterised by the dreams and ambitions to own a house of many being dashed for a considerable period of time by a few persons exploiting that dream. 
●    We are not out of that phase yet,” he added. 
●    Addressing the participants, ShPuri observed that the lack of finances was only part of a problem for owning a house. 
●    There was very little transparency in the housing sector. 
●    Broken promises, incomplete housing projects tell a tragic tale of untold misery inflicted on hapless citizens who, in many instances, had pledged their life time savings and even the family silver just to own a house. 

Vice President to inaugurate Aadi Mahotsav  

The Vice President, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu will inaugurate ‘Aadi Mahotsav’ - a fortnight long Tribal Festival with the theme of ‘A Celebration of the Spirit of Tribal Culture, Cuisine and Commerce’ tomorrow i.e 16 Nov 2017 at Dilli Haat, INA, New Delhi. 
●    The inaugural function will be presided over by Minister of Tribal Affairs Shri Jual Oram. 
●    Ministers of State for Tribal Affairs Shri Jasvantsinh Sumanbhai Bhabhor and Shri Sudarshan Bhagat will be specially present to grace the occasion. 
●    Secretary, Ministry of Tribal Affairs Ms. Leena Nair, Managing Director, TRIFED Shri Pravir Krishna and other senior officials will also be present on the occasion.
●    Over 750 tribal artisans from over 25 States will be participating in the festival. 
●    Aadi Mahotsav is scheduled to be organized at four venues throughout Delhi. 
●    The details of the venues and dates of the festival are as under.
●    The festival will run for a fortnight through 30th November 2017. 
●    The theme of the festival is: A Celebration of the Spirit of Tribal Culture, Cuisine and Commerce. 
●    The festival will feature exhibition-cum-sale of tribal handicrafts, art, paintings, fabric, jewellery and much more through about 200 stalls.

Union Steel Minister inaugurates Steel Pavilion at IITF 2017 


The Union Minister of Steel Shri Chaudhary Birender Singh inaugurated Ministry of Steel’s Pavilion at India International Trade Fair (IITF) 2017 here today at Pragati Maidan. 
●    The pavilion, where all public sector and major private sector steel companies are jointly participating, is designed on IITF 2017’s theme of Start-Up India: Stand-Up India. 
●    On the occasion, Shri Chaudhary Birender Singh announced and inaugurated a new initiative of Ministry of Steel – the #myLOVESTEELidea challenge. 
●    This contest is aimed at encouraging Start-Up India, Stand-Up India by inviting fresh business ideas based on steel, and offering one-time financial support to help translate the idea into reality. 
●    A total of Rs 10 Lakh will be split into Rs 5 lakh, Rs 3 lakh and Rs 2 lakh for the top best three ideas on steel-related innovation, deployment or commercialization of new product, processes or services or intellectual property. 
●    Start-up India: Stand-Up India is one of the core economic development initiatives of the government, and also the theme of IITF 2017, which aims at promoting entrepreneurship and business in various sectors. 
 

ONGC, Cairn India bid for 41 oil and gas fields


Public sector ONGC and private sector Vedanta Ltd The largest bidder for oil and gas blocks has emerged.
●    Under the open area of the oil and gas block license, 41 bids out of 57 bids received in the auction were met with both of them. 
●    At the same time, some big waivers and domestic companies kept away from it.
●    Sources linked to the matter said that the oil and natural gas corporation ONGC has 41 fields while Vedanta's company Cairn India has bid for 15 sectors.
●    Public Sector Oil India Ltd OIL is another main bidder company.
●    Hindustan Oil Exploration Company, HOEC bids for one area.
●    In July, the government opened 28 million square meters of sedimentary basin for oil and gas exploration.
●    The purpose of this initiative is to increase domestic production and reduce dependence on imports.
●    Of the 57 interest letters, 45 were in the month of July while one in September and seven in October.
●    BP has not made any bid till date. At the same time, Reliance Industries was also away from it.

Hunar Haat inaugurated in IITF 2017 

New Delhi, 15th Nov, 2017:  “Hunar Haat”, a spectacular platform of Ministry of Minority Affairs where exquisite pieces of Handicraft & Handloom prepared by inmates of Tihar Jail and master artisans from across the country are displayed, was inaugurated at India International Trade Fair at Pragati Maidan, today.
●    While inaugurating “Hunar Haat”, being organised from 14th to 27th Nov, 2017, Union Minister for Minority Affairs Shri Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said that “Hunar Haat” at Pragati Maidan is an impressive gathering of master artisans & craftsmen from “Tihar to Tripura, Kashmir to Kanyakumari & Karnataka to Kolkata”.
●    Ministry of Minority Affairs is organising “Hunar Haat” under “USTTAD” scheme at different parts of the country and “Hunar Haat” have become a successful mission to provide employment and employment opportunities and national as well international markets for thousands of master artisans, craftsmen and culinary experts.
●    The Minister said that while on one hand “Hunar Haat” have provided a platform to master artisans and craftsmen to display their rich heritage and skill, on the other hand these exhibitions are providing domestic and international markets to these artisans and craftsmen.

Current Affairs 15th November 2017: DAYS AND DATES

One day National Seminar on adoption organized successfully in New Delhi today 

A one day National Seminar on Adoption was held today as curtain raiser to the Children's Festival "Hausala 2017" being celebrated as Child Right's Week by the Ministry of Women & Children Development. 
●    Organized by Central Adoption Resources Authority, the seminar was inaugurated by the Minister of State for Women and Child Development, Dr. Virendra Kumar. 
●    Nearly 300 participants including senior officers of WCD Ministry, CARA, State WCD officials, SARAs, adoption agencies, Child Welfare Committees, District Child Care Protection Units among others attended the seminar.
●    In his inaugural address, the Minister of State for Women and Child Development, Dr Virendra Kumar, lauded the efforts of adoption agencies and said that it is commendable that they have chosen to work in this area which requires a lot of sensitivity and dedication. 
●    Dr. Virendra Kumar said that the States play a pivotal role in adoption since CARA has to coordinate the process of adoption with the help of State governments and State agencies. 
●    While some states are performing well, others have not shown good progress, but it is very important for everybody to understand the need for love, care and affection among the children living in Child Care Institutions and give proper attention to adoption, he said.
 

Current Affairs 15th November 2017: ECONOMY

Sebi stops execution of Assam real estate, others in the capital market


Capital Market regulator, Securities and Exchange Board of India, SEBI has imposed a four-year ban on working in the stock market of Abys Assam real estate AARL and its directors.
●    He has also been asked to return the money to the investors because he had raised this amount without complying with the rules of public issue.
●    SEBI has said in its order dated 14th November that the company raised the preferential shares of 2008-09 and 2009-10 and 1400 investors raised 1.2 crore rupees.
●    According to the rules, issuance of shares to more than 50 people, is eligible for a public issue.
●    In such a case, it is necessary to list the company on a recognized stock market. AARL did not do this.
●    Madhavi Puri Bush, a full time member of SEBI, said that in view of her, AARL issued funds to buy preferential shares and collected funds from the people but did not comply with the provisions of the Companies Act and SEBI Regulations.
 

Current Affairs 15th November 2017: GLOBAL NEWS

Sweden can negotiate with Birla group for smart clothes

Sweden's government is considering to form a joint project with Aditya Birla Group in the field of smart garments to increase bilateral trade.
●    "We have talked and are talking to Aditya Birla Group in the field of smart garments," Sweden's enterprise and innovation and Minister of Rural Affairs Sven-Eric Bach told reporters here.
●    Apart from this, we are also exploring possibilities in the areas of dairy and food security in India.
●    He said that Swedish hinges are making huge investments in the development of raw materials.
●    He said that he had yesterday visited the Textile Research Development Center of Birla Group situated in Kharach of Gujarat.
●    He said, the main purpose of this tour was to encourage the creation of smart garments from Viscose Staple Fiber VSF, cellulose fiber and pulp instead of cotton.
●    This is why Birla Group has been friendly for this. Birla Group is the world's largest VSF manufacturer.

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Important Current Affairs 14th November 2017

Important Current Affairs 14th November 2017

Current Affairs 14th November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

President of India inaugurates 37th India International Trade Fair-2017 

The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, inaugurated the 37th India International Trade Fair (IITF) -2017, today (November 14, 2017) in New Delhi. 
●    Speaking on the occasion, the President said that IITF is more than just a trade fair or exhibition. 
●    Commencing every year on November 14, it is a showcase of India on the global stage.
●    It is also a symbol of India’s ancient and enduring commitment to international trade.
●    The President said that instinctively we have been an open society – free to trade winds and cultural exchanges. 
●    We have valued a liberal, rules-based international trading order. 
●    This is part of our DNA. And this is the legacy that modern India and IITF are building on.
●    The President said that this year’s IITF takes place at a point when India is recognised as one of the bright spots of the global economy. 
●    The world has acknowledged the changed business environment in India and the strides made in ease of doing business. 


 

Railway Minister gives directions for “comprehensive training programme” for all employees of Indian Railways to boost productivity & efficiency.

Under the direction of Minister of Railways & Coal, Shri Piyush Goyal, a comprehensive plan for imparting training to all employees of Indian Railways is being prepared with a view to upgrade skill & knowledge. 
●    This comprehensive training programme named as “Project Saksham” will help boost productivity and efficiency. 
●    Under this plan, all employees in each zone will be put through a week’s training in skills and knowledge relevant to their work area over next one year. 
●    A communication to this effect from Chairman Railway Board, Shri Ashwani Lohani, has been sent to all General Managers of zonal railways and railways production unit. 
●    General Managers have been advised that such priority training need should be quickly identified for each category of employees (employees can be grouped into their work areas) based on the needs of respective zone. 
●    Identification of training needs and formulation of planned training calendar will be required to be completed by December 31st, 2017, ensuring that each employee is imparted training. 


 

The Government of India launched today the BHARAT-22 Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) managed by ICICI Prudential Mutual Fund 

The Government of India launched today the BHARAT-22 Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) managed by ICICI Prudential Mutual Fund targeting an initial amount of about Rs.8,000 crore. 
●    This New Fund Offer is open till November 17, 2017. 
●    The Units of the Scheme will be allotted 25% to each category of investors. 
●    In this ETF, the Retirement Fund has been made separate category of Investors. 
●    In case of spill-over, additional portion will be allocated giving preference to retail and retirement funds. 
●    There is a 3% discount across the board. 
●    The strength of this ETF lies in the specially created Index S&P BSE BHARAT-22 INDEX. 
●    This Index is a unique blend of shares of key CPSEs,Public Sector Banks (PSBs) and also the Government owned shares in blue chip private companies like Larsen & Toubro (L&T), Axis Bank and ITC. 
●    The shares of the Government companies represent 6 core sectors of the economy - Finance, Industry, Energy, Utilities, Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) and Basic Materials. 


 

R.K. Singh launches the National Power Portal(NPP) – a Centralized Platform for Collation and Dissemination of Indian Power Sector Information 

Shri R.K. Singh, Minister of State (IC) for Power and New & Renewable Energy, launched the National Power Portal (NPP)here today. 
●    NPP is a centralised system for Indian Power Sector which facilitates online data capture/ input (daily, monthly, annually) from generation, transmission and distribution utilities in the country and disseminate Power Sector Information (operational, capacity, demand, supply, consumption etc.) through various analysed reports, graphs, statistics for generation, transmission and distribution at all India, region, state level for central, state and private sector.
●    The NPP Dashboard has been designed and developed to disseminate analyzed information about the sector through GIS enabled navigation and visualization chart windows on capacity, generation, transmission, distribution at national, state, DISCOM, town, feeder level and scheme based funding to states. 
●    The system also facilitates various types of statutory reports required to be published regularly.
●    The Dashboard would also act as the single point interface for all Power Sector Apps launched previously by the Ministry, like TARANG, UJALA, VIDYUT PRAVAH, GARV, URJA, MERIT.

Rosogolla Belongs to Bengal, State Wins GI Tag Battle Against Odisha


It was a bitter battle that ended on a sweet note for Bengal. 
●    The Geographical Indications (GI) Registry on Tuesday announced that the ‘Rosogolla’, synonymous with the Bengali identity, originated in West Bengal and not Odisha.
●    The GI announcement came months after the Odisha government formed a panel to formally lay claims on ‘Rosogolla’, which has traditionally been identified with anything Bengali. 
●    West Bengal and Odisha have been engaged in a bitter legal battle over the origin of the syrupy Rosogolla since June 2015.
●    Speaking to News18 from Chennai, Assistant Registrar of Trademarks and GI, Chinnaraja G Naidu said, “Yes, today Bengal got the GI patent for Rosogolla. 
●    After a thorough study, we found that the juicy sweet ‘Rasgulla’ indeed originated from Bengal and not Odisha.”
●    The battle over Rosogolla turned even worse when Odisha’s Science and Technology Minister Pradip Kumar Panigrahi set up several committees in 2015 to trace the origin of 'Rosogolla'. 

Indian Guy Has Declared Himself The Ruler Of A Country 


An Indian man claims to have established his own kingdom after travelling to a no-man's land between Egypt and Sudan and declaring it his own.
●    Suyash Dixit 'founded' the Kingdom of Dixit on the unclaimed land of Bir Tawil, an 800-square-mile strip of land south of the Egyptian border.
●    While Bir Tawil is legally unclaimed territory, several people have attempted to colonise it over the years, including a Russian amateur radio enthusiast and an American man who wanted to make his daughter a real-life princess.
●    King of the desert: Suyash Dixit claims to have 'founded' his own kingdom on the unclaimed land of Bir Tawil, an 800-square-mile strip south of the Egyptian border.
●    Bir Tawil, meaning 'deep well' in Arabic, is situated south of the border between Egypt and Sudan, but neither country wants to lay claim to it. 
●    The discrepancy has meant Bir Tawil has stayed as a de facto 'no man's land' for more than 100 years.
●    Mr Dixit travelled from his hometown of Indore, India, to Bir Tawil to declare himself the 'first king of Dixit'.  

Current Affairs 14th November 2017: GLOBAL NEWS


Curtain Raiser Event held for the Founding Ceremony of International Solar Alliance in Bonn, Germany 


A Curtain Raiser Event for the Founding Ceremony of the International Solar Alliance (ISA) was held at Bonn, Germany yesterday.
●    Speaking at the event, Shri Anand Kumar, Secretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Government of India hoped that, in the spirit of affirmative action, developed countries will earmark a percentage of Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) towards solar energy projects in developing countries. 
●    He suggested that Multilateral Development Banks and other financial institutions provide wholehearted support for solar projects through low cost finance, and research & technology institutions worldwide try their utmost to bring the cost of solar power and storage within the reach of all. 
●    Shri Kumar also invited corporates and other institutions to support solar energy development and deployment in every possible manner.
●    Recalling that the ISA initiative is the vision of Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi, Shri Kumar reaffirmed Indian Government’s continued support for the ISA. 

Current Affairs 14th November 2017: AWARDS

Thaawarchand Gehlot presents Awards to winners of ‘Drawing and Painting Competition on Accessible India Campaign' 


On the occasion of Children’s Day, Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot, Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment presented the Awards to the winners of ‘Drawing and Painting Competition on Accessible India Campaign’ at a felicitation event organised by Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan) under M/o Social Justice and Empowerment at Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra, New Delhi today. 
●    Ministers of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Shri Ramdas Athawale and Shri Krishan Pal Gurjar were also present on this occasion.
●    Addressing on the occasion, Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot said that his ministry is fully committed to the welfare of Divyangjans and several new schemes and programmes have been initiated during past three years. 
●    He said that the categories of Divyangjans have been increased from Seven to Twenty One to cover more Divyangjans. 
●    He congratulated all award winners of the painting competition and also applauded the efforts of DEPwD for organizing such a useful competition.
●    Total 58 winners of this competition were awarded cash prize and certificates in a colourful ceremony. 

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Important Current Affairs 13th November 2017

Important Current Affairs 13th November 2017

Current Affairs 13th November 2017: GLOBAL NEWS

PM visits IRRI, Mahaveer Philippine Foundation

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, today visited the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), at Los Banos, in Philippines. 
●    IRRI is a premier research organisation dedicated to reducing poverty and hunger through rice science; improving the health and welfare of rice farmers and consumers; and protecting the rice growing environment for future generations. 
●    The Prime Minister reviewed a photo exhibit showcasing flood tolerant rice varieties; drought tolerant rice varieties; salinity tolerant rice varieties; and IRRI's work with women farming cooperatives. 
●    The Prime Minister undertook a symbolic groundbreaking for a new plot for submergence tolerant rice varieties. 
●    He unveiled a plaque to mark the inauguration of the Shri Narendra Modi Resilient Rice Field Laboratory. 
●    He presented two Indian rice seed varieties to the IRRI gene bank. 
●    During the course of the visit, the Prime Minister interacted with several Indian scientists working at IRRI. 

Current Affairs 13th November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS


Northeast to get India's first ever 'Air Dispensary': Dr Jitendra Singh 


Northeast is all set to get India’s first-ever "Air Dispensary" based in a helicopter and the Union Ministry of Development of Northeast (DONER) has already contributed Rs. 25 crore as part of the initial funding for this initiative.
●    Disclosing this here yesterday after a meeting with the representatives of Aviation Sector and helicopter service/Pawan Hans, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh said, for quite a few months, the DoNER Ministry had been exploring the idea of introducing a helicopter based Dispensary/OPD service in such far flung and remote areas, where no doctor or medical facility was available and the patient, in need, also did not have any access to any medical care. 
●    The proposal put forward by the Ministry of DoNER, he said, has been accepted and is in the final stages of process in the Union Ministry of Civil Aviation.
●    The Union Ministry of Northeast/DoNER, Dr Jitendra Singh said, is keenly pursuing the proposal so that by the beginning of 2018, this could be the Union Government’s gift to the people of Northeast.
●    Dr Jitendra Singh disclosed that even today, nearly 1/3rd of India’s population did not have access to proper hospital bed care, as a result of which, poor patients living in remote areas remained deprived of crucial medical care. 

Shri J P Nadda inaugurates the ‘Transport Ministers` Forum on Road Safety’ 

“All sectors including the health sector need to be fully engaged in responsibility, activity and advocacy for preventing accidents”. 
●    This was stated by Shri J P Nadda, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare at the ‘Transport Ministers` Forum on Road Safety’ organised by International Road Federation (IRF), here today.
●    Shri Nadda further said that the political commitment and a will to achieve can bring about significant and rapid decline in road injuries and requires planning at all levels, capacity creation, involvement of all sectors and good data.
●    Transport Ministers from eight countries along with Shri Yudhvir Singh Malik, Secretary (RT&H), Ministry of Road Transport & Highways, Mr. Jean Todt, UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety and Mr. Kiran K. Kapila, Chairman, IRF, Geneva, were also present at the occasion.
●    While emphasizing on the need to have a National Trauma Care Policy for road accident victims, Shri Nadda said that the possibility of novel methods of quick relief through airlifting such as Air Ambulances and providing relief in remote areas, well equipped Mobile Clinics etc., should be explored. 


Union Home Minister reviews measures to check cyber crimes in financial sector 


Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh chaired a meeting of all agencies concerned and representatives of relevant states here today to review the progress of the decisions taken during the meeting taken by him on September 19, 2017 for curbing the financial sector frauds emanating from the usage of cards and e-wallets in particular.
●    Union Home Minister was informed that in pursuance of the decisions taken in the meeting taken by him on September 19, 2017, an Inter Ministerial Committee on Phone Frauds (IMCPF) has been constituted in the Ministry of Home Affairs on September 28, 2017. 
●    The Committee under the chairmanship of Additional Secretary MHA and members from other stakeholder organisations namely Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY), Department of Financial Services, Department of Telecommunication, Reserve Bank of India and law enforcement agencies held its first meeting on October 24, 2017 and discussed various nature of phone frauds taking place in India and the steps to be taken by the various stakeholder organisations in order to curb such instances.
●    Union Home Minister reviewed the measures contemplated such as:
●    Big data analysis by involving IIT Delhi for identification of perpetrators of phone frauds in order to prevent duplication across e-wallets.
●    Providing of additional information in SMS/email alerts to customers from banks or e-wallet companies, as part of customer alert mechanism to include names of beneficiaries of any financial transaction wherever necessary for better traceability and cross checking on the part of the victim.

Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore releases the India Youth Development Index and Report 2017 


Union Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports (Independent Charge) Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore here today released the India Youth Development Index and Report 2017.  
●    The objective of constructing the India Youth Development Index (YDI) 2017 is to track the trends in Youth Development across the States. 
●    The Index enables recognizing the high and low performing states, identifies the weak domains and informs the policy makers the priority areas of intervention for youth development in the states.
●    The Rajiv Gandhi National Institute of Youth Development (RGNIYD), Sriperumbudur, Tamil Nadu, an Institute of National Importance has come out with Youth Development Index and Report 2017. 
●    This is a pioneering attempt made by the Institute in 2010 which it followed up with the India Youth Development Index in 2017. 
●    Constructing Youth Development Index for the year 2017 was done using the latest definition of youth as used in National Youth Policy – 2014 (India) and World Youth Development Report of Commonwealth (15 – 29 years) as well as using the Commonwealth Indicators in order to facilitate Global comparison. 
●    In the India Youth Development Index 2017, the first five dimensions are retained same as that of Global YDI. 

Companies curtail operations in NCR post NGT's pollution directive

Coca-Cola, Dabur, Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India and Perfetti Van Melle suspended operations at their manufacturing plants in the National Capital Region after the National Green Tribunal banned industrial activity in and around New Delhi to curb intense smog conditions. 
●    Hero MotoCorp, India’s largest two-wheeler maker, said production at its plant was partially affected. 
●    Manufacturing at many plants was halted on Friday or Saturday and some units stopped work even though they had not breached emission limits. 
●    The NGT hearing on the matter is expected on Tuesday. 
●    Coca-Cola, the country’s largest beverage maker, suspended manufacturing at four of its plants in the NCR in compliance with the NGT guidelines.
●    Dabur, which makes ayurvedic medicines at its Sahibabad plant, confirmed it had voluntarily shut production. 
●    It was not immediately clear how the production closures would affect sales. 
●    There is unlikely to be a major impact on sales since this is not peak season for Coca-Cola, a person familiar with the matter said, asking not to be identified. 


Idea, Vodafone India to sell tower business to ATC Telecom Infrastructure


The Kumar Mangalam Birla led Idea Cellular and Vodafone Plc.'s Indian unit Vodafone India have separately agreed to sell their respective standalone tower businesses in India to ATC Telecom Infrastructure Private Limited (ATC TIPL) for an aggregate enterprise value of ₹7850 crore (US $1.2 billion).
●    Both companies jointly own about 20,000 towers with tenancy ratio of 1.65x as of June 30, 2017, said a company statement, adding that Vodafone will get ₹3850 crore while Idea Cellular will get its share of ₹4000 crore from the transaction.
●    Both Vodafone India and Idea as customers, and ATC TIPL as a mobile network infrastructure provider, have agreed to treat each other as long-term preferred partners, subject to existing arrangements. 
●    The parties will work together to further the expansion of high speed mobile networks in India, the statement added.
●    Idea will sell its entire stake in its tower unit Idea Cellular Infrastructure Services Limited (ICISL) to ATC TIPL, while Vodafone India will sell a business undertaking that owns towers to ATC TIPL.


 

Essar Steel's production decreased by 15 percent

Since its introduction to Essar Steel, the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) has reduced its production by 15 percent.
●    The production was 15.7 lakh tonnes in the first quarter of the current year, which is 13.3 lakh tonnes in the second quarter.
●    With less production, the cost of raw material costs increased due to the company's profit.
●    Gas prices stood at 10.16 dollars per 10 lakh British thermal unit in November, which was 7.4 per million British thermal unit in June this year.
●    Under the leadership of the State Bank of India, banks started the filing process against Bhushan Steel, Essar Steel and Electrosteel in June and sent the three to NCLT under the purification and bankruptcy code IBC.
 

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Important Current Affairs 12th November 2017

Important Current Affairs 12th November 2017

Current Affairs 12th November 2017: NATIONAL NEWS

Govt To Start Rs 34,000 Crore BharatNet Phase 2 Project

The government will start its second and final phase of BharatNet project with an outlay of around Rs 34,000 crore to provide high-speed broadband in all panchayats by March 2019, Telecom secretary Aruna Sundararajan said on Sunday.
●    Under the project, the government aims to connect 1.5 lakh panchayats through 10 lakh kilometres of additional optical fibre and give bandwidth to telecom players at nearly 75 per cent cheaper price for broadband and wifi services in rural areas.
●    The telecom ministry will sign agreements with seven states -- Maharashtra, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Tamil Nadu and Jharkhand -- which will roll out the project on their own with partial funding from the central government.
●    She said around Rs 4.5 lakh crore value can be added to the national gross domestic product on completion of BharatNet phase 2 as a study has suggested that every 10 per cent usage of Internet in India drives up GDP by 3.3 per cent. 

No Islamic Bank In India : RBI

In a major move, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has decided not to pursue a proposal for introduction of Islamic banking in the country. 
●    Replying to an RTI query, the central bank said the decision was taken after considering "the wider and equal opportunities" available to all citizens to access banking and financial services. 
●    Islamic or Sharia banking is a finance system based on the principles of not charging interest, which is prohibited under Islam.
●    The issue of introduction of Islamic banking in India was examined by the RBI and the government of India, it said. 
●    The RBI was asked to provide details of steps being taken for the introduction of Islamic or 'interest-free' banking in India. 
●    Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on August 28, 2014 launched Jan Dhan Yojana, a national mission to bring about comprehensive financial inclusion of all the households in the country. 
●    In late 2008, a committee on Financial Sector Reforms, headed by former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan, had stressed on the need for a closer look at the issue of interest-free banking in the country.

ITPO to approach Cabinet for hotel at Pragati Maidan


The commerce ministry's trade promotion body ITPO will approach the Union Cabinet seeking nod to monetise a small portion of land at Pragati Maidan for construction of a hotel, an official said.
●    Set up in 1977, the India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO) is the nodal trade promotion agency that works under the commerce ministry.
●    "We will be going to the Cabinet and seek its approval. The land would be monetised on a long-term lease basis for building a hotel. It would enhance the value of the upcoming exhibition-cum-convention centre at Pragati Maidan," the ministry official said.
●    About 3.7 acres land would be given on a long-term lease or on free hold to a private player for construction of a luxury hotel.
●    As part of the redevelopment plan of Pragati Maidan, a world-class Integrated Exhibition-cum-Convention Centre is under construction with an estimated cost of Rs 2,254 crore.
●    The convention centre will have a seating capacity of over 7,000 persons.
●    ITPO CMD L C Goyal said that after construction of the hotel, the centre would become an unmatched venue for exhibitions and conventions.

4th India-Canada Annual Ministerial Dialogue in New Delhi Tomorrow 

A high level delegation led by the Canadian International Trade Minister, Mr. François-Philippe Champagne is visiting India to attend the 4th Annual Ministerial Dialogue (AMD) scheduled to begin tomorrow in New Delhi. 
●    The Indian delegation will be led by the Commerce and Industry Minister, Shri Suresh Prabhu. 
●    In the current round of the Ministerial Dialogue, India and Canada would be focusing on some of the key commercial drivers to enhance the India-Canada partnership. 
●    Efforts would be made to work towards the expeditious conclusion of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) for a progressive, balanced, and mutually beneficial agreement covering both goods and services. 
●    Considering the high potential for bilateral trade, the trade ministers of both countries are likely to discuss issues to explore ways of expediting the early conclusion of the CEPA and the Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA). 
●    India has long standing friendly bilateral relations with Canada. 

National Conference on BharatNet - Launch of Phase II, Signing of MoU with States and Utilisation of Network 

With Optical Fibre connectivity now available at 1 lakh Gram Panchayats under Phase-1 of BharatNet, DoT has initiated discussions on delivering Broadband enabled Citizen Services in these locations
●    The National Conference on Signing of MoU with States and Utilisation of Network will be held in New Delhi on 13th November 2017 with States and Service Providers
●    Telecos like Airtel, Reliance Jio, Vodafone and Idea have expressed interest in providing last mile connectivity on BharatNet Infrastructure.
●    Memorandum of Understanding to be signed with States for Implementation of BharatNet Phase II
●    DoT is organizing a National Conference with the State Governments and Service Providers on Monday (13.11.2017) to brainstorm and showcase various utilization models leveraging BharatNet infrastructure.  
●    The Conference will be attended by IT Ministers and IT Secretaries from States.

Current Affairs 12th November 2017: SPORTS

Mary Kom won fifth gold medal at Asian Boxing Championships

Mary Kom won her fifth Asian Boxing Championships title by beating Korea’s Hyang Mi Kim on Wednesday. 
●    In a fiercely-contested final in Ho Chi Min City, Mary Kom won by 5-0 unanimous decision ending her gold medal drought in international competitions since Asian Games 2014.
●    The five-time world champion and Olympic bronze-medallist, unlike her previous bouts, got a competitive rival. 
●    The earlier bouts, Mary used the opening three minutes were invariably spent measuring up the rival, but on Wednesday both the Mary Kom and Hyang Mi were lunging at each other within seconds of the bell going off.  
●    Mary Kom scored for her ringcraft, which included some fine footwork to outpace Hyang Mi at crucial junctures.
●    There was hardly any power-hitting on display but the contest was made engaging by the boxers’ fast-paced exchange of punches. 
●    The North Korean was relentless with her left hooks but the Manipuri did not allow herself to be rattled and scored on counter-attack with her combination blows.
 

Pankaj Advani wins 17th World Billiards Championship title

Ace Indian cueist Pankaj Advani on Sunday clinched his 17th world title after he thrashed his arch-rival Mike Russell of England in the IBSF World Billiards Championship in Doha.
●    Advani beat Russell 6-2 (0-155, 150-128, 92-151, 151-0, 151-6, 151-0, 150-58, 150-21) to defend the 150-up format title he had won in Bengaluru last year. 
●    The Indian did not have an ideal start to the best-of-11 summit clash as Russell drew first blood with a well-crafted break of 155.
●    Advani drew parity in the next frame but still seemed to be looking for his best to arrive. 
●    The Englishman bounced back with breaks of 84 and 67 to win what was going to be the last frame to his name in the final.
●    From the fourth frame, the Indian was a transformed player. 
●    Advani, winner of maximum number of world titles in any sport by an Indian, increased his total by one more as he dominated the remainder of the final. 
●    He clinically constructed lethal breaks of 151, 151, 151, 145 and 110 to completely dismantle his longstanding rival.
 

Current Affairs 12th November 2017: SUMMIT

Mumbai to host Asian Bankers Association summit


For the first time, the nation’s financial capital will host the 34th annual conference of the Asian Bankers Association (ABA) this week.
●    The two-day conference will be held in the megapolis from November 16 and will be hosted by State Bank, with the theme of ‘Asia’s turn to transform’, SBI said.
●    The event is expected to see the presence of over 160 domestic as well as international bankers and Reserve Bank deputy governor Viral V Acharya will deliver the special opening address on the second day.
●    Founded in 1981, the ABA serves as a forum for advancing the cause of the banking industry and promote regional economic cooperation across the continent.
●    With around 80 members from 25 countries, the association holds conferences on issues of concern to the banking sector, policy advocacy discussions, and training programmes.
●    Some of the key foreign speakers at the event include ADB’s Noritaka Akamatsu, Chikahisa Sumi of IMF and Cheng Cheng-Mount of Financial Supervisory Commission of Taiwan.

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