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National Current Affairs | Access the Latest Happenings across India
1. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley delivered the financial budget for the fiscal year 2018-19 amid subdued economic growth, challenging fiscal situation and farm distress.
Here are the key highlights from the Union Budget 2018:
Economy on course to achieve high growth of 8%.
MSP for all Kharif crops increased to 150% and Operation Green to increase the production.
Kisan Credit Card to Fishermen and Cattle owners.
New National Health Protection Scheme, providing a health insurance cover of INR 5 lakh a family per annum.
Revitalizing Infrastructure and Systems in Education (RISE) Scheme.
Under Ujjwala Scheme distribution of free LPG connections will be given to 8 crore poor women.
Housing for all by 2022 – more than one crore houses to be built by 2019 in rural areas.
Ekalavya Model Residential School to be set up for tribal children.
24 New Government Medical Colleges and Hospitals and Prime Minister Fellowship Scheme.
70 lakh formal jobs to be created this year.
To develop 10 prominent tourist sites into iconic tourism destinations.
Over 3600 km of track renewal targeted in current fiscal.
Redevelopment of 600 major railway stations.
Mumbai’s local train network to have 90 kilometers of double line tracks at INR 11,000 crore cost.
150 km of additional suburban network planned for Mumbai.
To expand airport capacity more than five times to handle a billion trips a year.
To set up 5 lakh Wi-Fi hotspots to provide net-connectivity to five crore rural citizens.
To revise emoluments to INR 5 lakh for the President, INR 4 lakhs for the Vice President, INR 3.5 lakh per month to Governor.
National Bamboo Mission to promote the bamboo sector.
Gobar – Dhan Yojna to improve villages using bio-agro resources.
2. 7th India Energy Congress was held in New Delhi on February 1, 2018.
The theme of the 7th edition of India Energy Congress was ‘Energy 4.0: Energy Transition Towards 2030′.
It is the flagship event of World Energy Council India (WEC) and joint event of ministries of power, coal, new & renewable energy, petroleum & natural gas, external affairs and Department of Atomic Energy.
3. The Maharashtra government has approved Ghodazari in Chandrapur district as a new wildlife sanctuary in the state.
The sanctuary, in the North East of Tadoba, will include 159 sq. km of Brahmapuri forest.
4. State government in association with UNICEF has launched massive door to door campaign DASTAK in Uttar Pradesh to eradicate deadly Acute Encephalitis Syndrome and Japanese Encephalitis disease in the state.
5. The Haryana government has launched the Gobardhan Yojana to provide for the sale of organic manure and cow urine with an aim to benefit farmers.
A provision of INR 11 crore has been made to provide benefits of various projects under this scheme.
6. The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind has inaugurated the Mahamastakabhisheka Mahotsav 2018 of Gommateshwara Bhagwan Sri Bahubali Swami at Shravanabelagola, Karnataka.
The Mahamastakabhisheka Mahotsav is celebrated once every 12 years.
It has been celebrated for over 1,000 years.
7. The Ministry of Railways has decided to set up a massive rail coach factory in Latur district in Marathwada region of Maharashtra.
It will help to generate employment opportunities and bring economic development in Marathwada region which is one of the most backward parts of Maharashtra.
8. The Union Government has announced Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahaabhiyan (KUSUM) scheme for promoting solar farming.
It is aimed to decentralized solar power production of up to 28,250 MW to help farmers.
It will reduce transmission losses of DISCOMs as well as provide support to improve financial health of DISCOMs by reducing subsidy burden to agriculture sector.
9. The Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) Dr. Harsh Vardhan has launched Green Good Deeds campaign in New Delhi.
The purpose of the campaign is to sensitize people and students about climate change and global warming.
10. Britain’s Prince Charles has launched a new 10-million-dollar Development Impact Bond (DIB) to help improve education for over 200,000 children in India.
The DIB is the largest bond of its type in South Asia.
It is the latest fundraising initiative by British Asian Trust (BAT) set up by Royal Family 10 years ago to fight poverty in South Asia.
International Current Affairs | Know What’s happening around the World
1. India has joined the Ashgabat agreement to setting up of an international transport and transit corridor linking central Asia with the Persian Gulf to significantly ramp up trade and investment.
Turkmenistan, Iran, Oman and Uzbekistan signed the agreement on April 25, 2011.
In October 2016, Pakistan had formally joined the project. Kazakhstan is also a part to this agreement.
2. Maldivian President Abdulla Yameen has declared a 15-day state of Emergency in order to protect the peace and welfare of all the citizens and the country.
The move gives sweeping powers to security forces to arrest and detain suspects as Yameen refuses to comply with a Supreme Court order to release political prisoners.
The latest crisis was triggered when the Maldivian Supreme Court ordered the release of some opposition leaders, after overturning their “terrorism” convictions.
3. A Special Court in Dhaka has sentenced former Bangladesh Prime Minister Khaleda Zia to jail for five years in a 10-year-old graft case.
The court also sentenced her son, Tarique Rahman, and four others to jail for 10 years. Rahman is a resident of London.
The Anti-Corruption Commission filed the case, accusing Ms. Zia and the five others of misappropriating over 2.1 crore Bangladeshi Taka that had come from a foreign bank as grants for orphans.
4. Bhutan is going to open a consulate in Guwahati trying to shake off the militancy tag.
Bhutan become the second country to open consulate in Guwahati, after the Bangladesh.
Bhutan has already had a consulate in Kolkata for years.
5. Rwanda become the first low-income/ poor country to provide eye care for its 12 million population.
The government has partnered with the organization Vision for a Nation (VFAN) to train more than 3000 eye care nurses.
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) | Get the Best Information Out of Top Agreements
1. Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency Limited (IREDA) and Rewa Ultra Mega Solar Limited (RUMSL) signed an agreement for financing the shared infrastructure of two large Solar Parks in Madhya Pradesh.
Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE), World Bank & IREDA have made a proposal to channelize US$ 100 Million for creating common infrastructure for ultra-mega solar parks in India.
The aim of the proposal is to achieve the 100 GW solar capacity target by 2022, set by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.
2. Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) signed a MoU with the World Bank, as the latter entered into a US $ 375 million loan agreement with the Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance for Jal Marg Vikas Project (JMVP).
The JMVP, which is expected to be completed by March, 2023, is being implemented with the financial and technical support of the World Bank.
The project will enable commercial navigation of vessels with the capacity of 1500-2,000 tons on 1st National Waterways (NW-I).
3. Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) and Joint Stock Company, United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC), Russia have signed a MoU to Design, Development and Execution of specialized vessels for Inland and Coastal Waterways.
The agreement will give a push to the government’s Make-in-India programme, and its plans to develop eco-friendly and economic transportation along India’s inland waterways and coastal shipping routes under SAGARMALA.
It will mainly include development of High-Speed Vessels, Passenger Vessels, River-Sea Cargo Vessels, Dredgers and other watercrafts for inland waterways and coastal shipping.
4. Paytm Payments Bank, a digital bank which provides zero balance accounts and zero charges on digital transactions, partnered with the Mumbai Dabbawala Association, the pioneers of home-cooked food delivery.
As part of this association, around 5000 dabbawalas will now be able to collect instant payments for their Dabba service through Paytm QR.
They will also avail an easy access to banking and other financial services by opening their bank accounts with Paytm.
5. The Union Cabinet approved signing of Memoranda of Understanding for Secondment Programme between India and Australia.
The MoU will be signed between Department of Economic Affairs (DEA)-Indian Economic Service Cadre and The Treasury, Government of Australia for period of three months.
Merger and Acquisition | Insights of Major Companies & Organizations
1. The government will merge three general insurance firms into one and subsequently list the entity on stock exchanges as part of divestment of public sector entities.
These three public sector general insurance companies are National Insurance Co Ltd, United India Assurance Co Ltd and Oriental India Insurance Company.
The government has begun strategic disinvestment in 24 Public Sector Units (PSUs), including national carrier Air India.
2. ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank have approved JFC Finance (India) Ltd’s bid to acquire the insolvent Palogix Infrastructure, a 20-year old firm in railways logistics.
JFC Finance is a Delhi-based non-banking firm, has proposed to acquire close to 80% in Palogix for INR 100-crore.
The logistics firm owes INR 150 crore to creditors.
Banking Awareness & Economics Current Affairs | Understand the Top Trends in India
1. India’s annual financial allocation to Nepal for 2018-19 has nearly doubled under the Union Budget presented on February 1.
The External Affairs Ministry has been allocated a total INR 15,011 crore, which indicates a marginal increase of INR 1,321 crore over the previous year’s grant.
For India’s development and diplomatic engagement under the ‘Neighborhood First’ policy, the Budget has allocated INR 5545 crore.
Bhutan is traditionally the largest recipient of Ministry’s allocation.
2. The Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has launched CriSidEx, India’s first sentiment index for Micro and Small Enterprises (MSEs) developed jointly by CRISIL & SIDBI.
CriSidEx is a composite index based on a diffusion index of 8 parameters and measures MSE business sentiment on a scale of 0 (extremely negative ) to 200 ( extremely positive).
The benefit of CriSidEx is that its readings will flag potential headwinds and changes in production cycles and thus help improve market efficiencies.
By capturing the sentiment of exporters and importers, it will also offer actionable indicators on foreign trade.
3. On the basis of an assessment of the current and evolving macroeconomic situation, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decided to keep repo, reverse repo rates unchanged.
Current Monetary Policy Rates:
Repo Rate: 6%
Reverse Repo Rate: 5.75%
Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) Rate: 6.25%
Bank Rate: 6.25%
Cash Reserve Ratio: 4%
Statutory Liquidity Ratio (SLR): 19.5%
4. State Bank of India has inked an Information Utility (IU) agreement with National E-Governance Services Ltd. (NeSL) to share financial & security information under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IU) regulation 2017.
Under Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), IU will offer services for accepting electronic submission of financial information, verifying and authenticating the financial information submitted by a person .
5. Forbes business magazine has released its first ever Crypto Rich List, comprising 20 wealthiest people in the cryptocurrency space.
Ripple Co-Founder Chris Larsen has topped the list with crypto net worth of $ 7.5-8 billion.
He is followed by Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin ($1.5 billion) and founder of cryptocurrency exchange Binance Changpeng Zhao ($ 1-1.2 billion).
Science & Technology Current Events | Stay Advanced with Latest Inventions
1. The third Scorpene class submarine named Karanj was launched on 31 January 2018 by Mrs Reena Lamba, President Navy Wives Welfare Association.
The submarine ‘Karanj’ was constructed by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited for the Indian Navy.
2. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has approved 60 Cities including 13 Pilot and 5 Model Cities up to 12th Five-year Plan period, under its Development of Solar Cities scheme.
The Stake-holders Committees have been constituted in 21 Cities and Solar City Cells have been created in 37 Solar Cities.
Solar PV projects with aggregate capacity of 8069.16 KWP and Solar Water Heating System with aggregate capacity of 7894 meter square collector area have been sanctioned under the programme.
INR 101.64 crore has been sanctioned and INR 25.92 crore has been released under scheme “Development of Solar Cities” so far.
3. ISRO has established Village Resource Centers (VRCs) on a pilot scale in association with selected NGOs, Trusts and State Government Departments.
The aim of the project is to demonstrate the potential of satellite technology for development of rural areas.
VRCs have provided various space technology enabled services such as tele-health care, tele-education, natural resources information, advisories related to agriculture, career guidance to rural students, skill development and vocational training etc.
4. Union Minister of State (IC) for Power and New & Renewable Energy, Shri R.K Singh, launched a Web based monitoring System and a Fly Ash mobile application named ASH TRACK.
These platforms will enable better management of the ash produced by thermal power plants by providing an interface between fly ash producers (Thermal Power Plants) and potential ash users such as road contractors, cement plants etc.
5. The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer have inked MoU to establish a ‘Centre to Combat Antimicrobial Resistance’ in New Delhi.
The center will help in combating the growing threat of Anti\-Microbial Resistance (AMR) in India.
The partnership will help to implement series of comprehensive interventions, ranging from AMR stewardship programmes for nursing homes.
6. Short-range nuclear capable ballistic missile, Agni-1 was successfully test-fired from mobile launcher located at Dr. Abdul Kalam Island off the Odisha.
Agni-1 is indigenously developed intermediate range surface-to-surface, single-stage missile.
It was developed by Advanced Systems Laboratory (ASL) in collaboration with Defence Research Development Laboratory (DRDL) and Research Center Imarat (RCI).
7. Google and National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has signed a pact to integrate a course on ‘Digital Citizenship and Safety’ in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) curriculum.
The course aims to bring awareness amongst the young generation of India to make internet a safe space.
8. Indigenously developed nuclear capable surface-to-surface Prithvi-II missile was successfully test fired from a test range in Odisha.
Prithvi-II is short range surface-to-surface ballistic missile. It is 9 meter long, single-stage liquid-fueled missile capable of carrying 500-1,000 kilogram of warheads.
9. For first time, scientists from Britain and United States have succeeded in growing human eggs in laboratory from earliest stages in ovarian tissue that could be fertilized.
Using this technique, scientists had developed mouse eggs in laboratory to stage where they produced live offspring, and also matured human eggs from a relatively late stage of development.
10. The Indian Navy has unveiled the Integrated Automatic Aviation Meteorological System (IAAMS) at INS Garuda, naval air station located in Kochi, Kerala.
IAAMS is ambitious project of Indian Navy to modernize Meteorological infrastructure of 9 Naval Air Stations (NAS).
It is expected to bring accuracy in weather monitoring mechanism in the Indian Navy.
Sports Current Affairs | Read all the Major Achievements in Popular Tournaments
|S. No.||Tournaments/Sports Names||Winners||Pictures|
|1.||National Men’s Singles Title (Table Tennis)||Sharath Kamal|
|2.||National Women’s Singles Title (Table Tennis)||Sutirtha Mukherjee|
|3.||Cooch Behar Trophy||Vidarbha Under-19 cricket team|
|4.||India Open Boxing Tournament (Women)||M.C. Mary Kom|
|5.||Under-19 World Cup Champions (Cricket)||India|
|6.||India Open Super 300 Badminton Tournament Runner-Up||PV Sindhu|
|7.||Highest Ranked Indian Golfer||Shubhankar Sharma|
|8.||First Female Cricketer to Take 200 ODI Wickets||Jhulan Goswami|
|9.||Winter 2018 Olympics is being held at||South Korea|
|10.||Champions of Khelo India School Games||Haryana|
|11.||Highest Ranked Indian Squash Player||Saurav Ghosal|
|12.||ICC’s 1st Independent Female Director||PepsiCo Chairman and CEO Indra Nooyi|
Awards and Honours | Fetch the List of Top Awardees in Distinct Fields
|S. No.||Awards Names||Awardees Names||Pictures|
|1.||Sahitya Akademi Bhasha Samman Award||Shesh Anand Madhukar|
|2.||42nd Rank in Annual Global Democracy Index of Economist Intelligence Unit’s||India|
|3.||Most Polluted State of India according to Greenpeace Report||Uttar Pradesh|
|4.||Top 3 Crude Steel Produce Countries||1st China|
|5.||Times Power Woman 2017 Award||Shabnam Asthana|
|6.||V Shantaram Lifetime Achievement Award||Shyam Benegal|
|7.||First State to have Transgender Welfare Board||Maharashtra|
|8.||Biggest Floating Island of India||Neknampur Lake, Hyderabad|
|9.||Who Resigned as the Chairperson of The Children’s Film Society||Mukesh Khanna|
|10.||World’s Busiest International Airport||Dubai International Airport|
|11.||World’s Busiest Single-Runway Airport||Mumbai Airport|
|12.||Pelican Birds Festival 2018 was held at||Atapaka Bird Sanctuary, Kolleru lake|
|13.||India’s Rank in International Intellectual Property (IP) Index||44th Rank|
|14.||Golden Peacock Award 2017 for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)||Reliance Industries (RIL)|
|15.||6th Wealthiest Country||India|
|16.||Geospatial World Excellence Award-2018||Odisha|
|17.||List of Indian Institutes Placed in Top 100 of the Times Higher Education (THE) Ranking||IISc Bengaluru – 29th Rank|
|IIT Bombay – 44 Rank|
|IIT Kharagpur – 60 Rank|
|IIT Roorkee – 65 Rank|
|IIT Kanpur – 81 Rank|
|IIT Delhi – 86 Rank|
|Tezpur University – 100th Rank|
Appointments Latest GK Updates | Upgrade Your Knowledge Cart with the List of Top Influencers
|S. No.||Position & Organization||Name||Pictures|
|1.||Director General (DG) of Sports Authority of India (SAI)||Neelam Kapoor|
|2.||Ambassador of India to the Romania||Thanglura Darlong|
|3.||Directors to the Central Board of the Reserve Bank of India||Prasanna Kumar MohantyDilip S. Shanghvi|
|4.||Cyprus President||Nicos Anastasiades|
|5.||Niti Aayog CEO||Amitabh Kant|
|6.||Financial Commissioner of Railway Board||A.K. Prasad|
|7.||Assistant Chief of Naval Staff – FCI||Atul Anand|
|8.||SBI Card MD & CEO||Hardayal Prasad|
|9.||Brand Ambassador of Muthoot Group||Amitabh Bachchan|
|10.||Chief Executive of Nuclear Fuel Complex||Dinesh Srivastava|
|11.||New Director General of NSG||Senior IPS officer Sudeep Lakhtakia|
|12.||First Women Chief Justice of Manipur High Court||Abhilasha Kumari|
|13.||Chief Justice of Kerala||Antony Dominic|
|14.||New Board Chairman of Alphabet Company||John L. Hennessy|
|15.||Chairman of Federal Reserve||Jerome H Powell|
|16.||Non-Executive Chairman of NPCI||Biswamohan Mohapatra|
Important Days & Dates | Mark them to Boost up your General Knowledge
|S. No.||Important Days||Dates|
|1.||Indian Coast Guard Day||1 February|
|2.||World Wetlands Day||2 February|
|3.||World Cancer Day||4 February|
|4.||National Deworming Day||10 February|
Recent Deaths of Famous Personalities | Know who died today?
|1.||Lakshmi Devi – Telugu actor|
|2.||Madavoor Vasudevan Nair – Kathakali Maestro|
List of Important Abbreviations asked in General Awareness | IBPS, SSC, RRB Exams
Fill up your knowledge cart with the Important Abbreviations that are asked in General Awareness & Current Affairs section of the competitive exams like – IBPS, SSC & RRB. Below, we are presenting you a list of Top Abbreviations that were used in this article. Please check it out –
|S. No.||Important Abbreviations||Full Forms|
|1.||WEC||World Energy Council|
|2.||UNICEF||United Nations Children’s Fund|
|3.||RISE||Revitalizing Infrastructure and Systems in Education|
|4.||AHF||Affordable Housing Fund|
|5.||KUSUM||Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahaabhiyan|
|6.||MoEFCC||Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change|
|7.||DIB||Development Impact Bond|
|8.||BAT||British Asian Trust|
|9.||THE||Times Higher Education|
|10.||IISc||Indian Institute of Science|
|VFAN||Vision for a Nation|
|12.||IREDA||Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency Limited|
|13.||RUMSL||Rewa Ultra Mega Solar Limited|
|14.||MNRE||Ministry of New & Renewable Energy|
|15.||IWAI||Inland Waterways Authority of India|
|16.||JMVP||Jal Marg Vikas Project|
|18.||CSL||Cochin Shipyard Limited|
|19.||USC||United Shipbuilding Corporation|
|20.||DEA||Department of Economic Affairs|
|21.||PSUs||public sector units|
|22.||MSEs||Micro And Small Enterprises|
|23.||MPC||Monetary Policy Committee|
|25.||NeSL||National E-Governance Services Ltd|
|26.||IBC||Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code|
|27.||VRC||Village Resource Center|
|29.||ICMR||Indian Council of Medical Research|
|31.||ASL||Advanced Systems Laboratory|
|32.||DRDL||Defence Research Development Laboratory|
|33.||RCI||Research Centre Imarat|
|34.||NCERT||National Council of Educational Research and Training|
|35.||ICT||Information and Communication Technology|
|36.||IAAMS||Integrated Automatic Aviation Meteorological System|
|37.||NAS||Naval Air Stations|
|38.||ICC||International Cricket Council|
|40.||CSR||Corporate Social Responsibility|
|42.||SAI||Sports Authority of India|
|44.||FCI||Food Corporation of India|
|45.||NSG||National Security Guard|
To fetch the complete list of Important Abbreviations that are asked in Competitive Exam, please visit the blog – Popular Abbreviations for Competitive Exams: SSC, IBPS, RRB, Govt Jobs.
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