Home Daily Updates IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 18 - SEPTEMBER - 2016
IMPORTANT CURRENT AFFAIRS & DAILY NEWS UPDATES : 18 - SEPTEMBER - 2016
Thursday, 22 September 2016 04:52

 

 

 


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DAILY NEWS UPDATES

18- SEPTEMBER - 2016

 

:: NATIONAL ::

PM MODI CELEBRATED HIS 66TH BIRTHDAY WITH TRIBALS IN CENTRAL GUJARAT

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi celebrated his 66th birthday with tribals in central Gujarat, where he announced several irrigation schemes, and he distributed assistive devices and kits to over 11000 specially abled persons.
  • In the tribal district of Dahod, the Prime Minister announced several water supply and lift irrigation projects worth Rs 4800 crore under the Gujarat government's Vanbandhu Kalyan Yojna.
  • In Navsari, the Prime Minister distributed kits and assistive devices such as wheelchairs and hearing aids to specially abled persons.
  • According to Mr Modi, previous governments held only 57 camps for divyangs while the NDA government held 4,000 in only two years.

NITI AAYOG WILL START RANKING STATES

  • Niti Aayog will start ranking States on outcomes in social sectors such as healthcare, water and education from next month.
  • "If 39 per cent of the population is stunted and nutrition is poor, you can’t move up the ladder and will lose the advantage of a young demographic,” Mr. Kant said.
  • The Centre’s think tank is finalising new indices to track the States’ performance on parameters pertaining to education, water and health sectors.
  • "India has done a lot on access to education, but quality of education is extremely poor. Our Class V student is not able to do addition and subtraction. Our Class II students can’t read their mother tongue,” he said.

UN SAYS AUGUST EQUALLED JULY AS THE HOTTEST MONTH IN MODERN TIMES

  • August equalled July as the hottest month in modern times, the UN’s weather agency said, warning that extraordinary temperatures were “set to become the new norm“.
  • The United Nations Meteorological Organisation (WMO) also forecast that 2016 will prove to be the warmest year on Earth over 137 years of record-keeping.
  • It is looking likely that 2016 will (be) the hottest year on record, surpassing the incredible temperatures witnessed in 2015.
  • The average temperature last month was 0.16 degrees warmer than the previous hottest August, which was in 2014. Last month was also 0.98 degrees warmer than the average August temperature from 1950-1980, the WMO said.

:: INTERNATIONAL ::

YAZIDI WOMAN, SURVIVOR OF THE ISLAMIC STATE (IS), APPOINTED UN GOODWILL AMBASSADOR

  • A young Iraqi woman, who survived trafficking at the hands of the Islamic State (IS), has been appointed a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador for the dignity of survivors of human trafficking.
  • Nadia Murad Basee Taha (23), a Nobel Peace Prize nominee, is the Goodwill Ambassador for the Dignity of Survivors of Human Trafficking of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.
  • The appointment marks the first time a survivor of atrocities is bestowed with this distinction.
  • Ms. Murad had briefed the UN Security Council in its first-ever session on human trafficking in December last year. She described being rounded up with fellow Yazidis in Iraq in 2014.
  • A relentless advocate for victims, Ms. Murad was recently named one of Time magazine’s ‘100 Most Influential People of 2016.’

:: BUSINESS AND ECONOMY ::

GOVT IS WORKING TO MEET THE APRIL 2017 DEADLINE FOR GST

  • The government is working overtime to meet the stiff April 2017 deadline for rolling out the Goods and Service Tax (GST) regime and it remains a “challenge,” Cabinet Secretary P.K. Sinha said.
  • “The government has been working overtime recently and has taken some path-breaking steps in making governance efficient, transparent, responsive, participatory and accountable,” he said.
  • “In fact, I can even say a silent revolution is under way as we move towards a completely digital architecture towards governance in all fields.”
  • The government is thinking of various measures to promote cargo transport on waterways, cargo movement has already begun on the national waterway from Varanasi to Howrah and is proving to be more cost-efficient that road and rail.
  • Addition of new railway lines and electrification has been expedited and passenger traffic is growing at more than 20 per cent in the civil aviation sector, giving the Railways ‘stiff competition,’.

FINANCE MINISTRY MOVES TO FILL SAARC DEVELOPMENT FUND POSTS

  • Ahead of the SAARC Summit in Islamabad, it is business as usual for the regional grouping.
  • Union Finance Ministry has posted a call for applications for economy, infrastructure and social development posts in the umbrella financial mechanism for the region’s projects and programmes, the SAARC Development Fund.
  • The openings include the jobs of the Directors of the Fund’s three funding windows: Social, Economic and Infrastructure. They will be located in the Fund’s Secretariat in Thimphu, Bhutan.
  • The Fund’s Economic and Infrastructure windows are in the process of being operationalised. Bankable projects for lending in the region are under evaluation.
  • The Economic Window is expected to extend funding to non-infrastructural projects related to areas such as trade and industrial development and agriculture.
  • Under the Social window, the Fund is already implementing ten regional projects.
  • The focus of most of these projects is on poverty alleviation, education; health; human resources development; support to the disadvantaged; funding needs of communities, mirco-enterprises and rural infrastructure development.
  • The Infrastructure Window will finance projects in areas such as energy, power, transportation, telecommunications, environment, tourism and other infrastructure sectors.
  • The programme was expected to result in greenhouse gases emission mitigation of around 5.5 million tons of CO2-equivalent annually and 5,700 million KWh of energy savings during 2012-2015.

FINANCE MINISTER SAYS FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY AND BUDGET MANAGEMENT ACT IS IMPORTANT

  • Governments need to balance their political impulse towards populism and the need for sound expenditure management, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said.
  • Highlighting the importance of the FRBM Act and its related targets in ensuring this, Mr. Jaitely said: “One of the reasons why the FRBM targets in India were statutorily brought in was really because, in public life and politics, there was always a conflict between populism and financial discipline.”
  • The government in May announced the constitution of a panel to review the FRBM Act of 2003, as outlined by Mr. Jaitley in his Budget speech.
  • The panel will also look into the possibility of replacing absolute fiscal deficit targets with a target range.
  • Mr. Jaitley went on to exhort those present, as well as all participants of the economy such as individuals, private companies, and even governments, to borrow prudently.
  • These comments come a day after Mr. Jaitley reviewed the performance of the public sector banks and highlighted the high levels of non-performing assets in these banks.
  • Mr. Jaitley said the NPA issue was entirely a product of poor fiscal foresight.

:: IMPORTANT DETAILED NEWS ::

INDIA, GREECE SIGN AIR SERVICES AGREEMENT UNDER OPEN SKY POLICY

India signed the bilateral Air Services Agreement with Greece to allow unlimited points of call for domestic airlines in Greece.

Both the countries have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in this regard under the Open Sky Policy. It will be the first such ASA with Greece, a country known for its tourist spots and scenic beauty.

Background
Indian Government Signed the MoU with Greece under the provisions of the new Civil Aviation Policy with an aim to improve international air connectivity for Indian carriers.

As per the policy, the government will enter into an Open Sky Air Services Agreement on a reciprocal basis with SAARC nations as well as countries with territory located entirely beyond a 5000 kilometre radius from New Delhi.

FIRST EDITION OF IOT INDIA CONGRESS BEGINS IN BENGALURU

The first edition of IoT India Congress 2016 kick started in Bengaluru, Karnataka.

The three-day event was inaugurated by Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Information Technology (IT) and Electronics Minister, and JS Deepak, Secretary, Ministry of Telecommunications.

Key highlights of the event

The IoT India Congress 2016 is one of the largest events of its kind in India.

It will bring together stakeholders from various facets of the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem.

It aims to bring together key stakeholders across the value chain and verticals to collaborate, ideate and share a common roadmap for IoT implementation.

The event will also host the IoT Thought Leadership Awards 2016 and the IoT Start-Up Awards 2016.

About Internet of Things

The Internet of Things is a system of interrelated computing devices, mechanical and digital machines, objects, animals or people that are provided with unique identifiers. They are provided with the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction.

In 2013, the Global Standards Initiative on Internet of Things defined the IoT as the infrastructure of the information society.

The IoT allows objects to be sensed and/or controlled remotely across existing network infrastructure.

When IoT is augmented with sensors and actuators, the technology becomes an instance of the more general class of cyber-physical systems.

British entrepreneur Kevin Ashton coined the term in 1999 while working at Auto-ID Labs.

ISRO LAUNCHES ADVANCED WEATHER SATELLITE INSAT-3DR

Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) successfully launched advanced weather satellite, INSAT-3DR.

The advanced weather satellite was launched with the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-F05), from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota.

GSLV-F05, the tenth flight of India's GSLV, carried 2211 kg INSAT-3DR into a Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO). GSLV is designed to inject 2 - 2.5 ton class of satellites into GTO.

After reaching GTO, INSAT-3DR will use its own propulsion system to reach its final geosynchronous orbital home and will be stationed at 74 deg East longitude.

INSAT-3DR

• INSAT-3DR is an advanced meteorological satellite of India configured with an imaging System and an Atmospheric Sounder.

• INSAT-3DR is an improved variant of INSAT-3D, the improvements incorporated includes

a) Imaging in Middle Infrared band to provide night time pictures of low clouds and fog

b) Imaging in two Thermal Infrared bands for estimation of Sea Surface Temperature (SST) with better accuracy

c) Higher Spatial Resolution in the Visible and Thermal Infrared bands

• Like its predecessor INSAT-3D, INSAT-3DR carries a Data Relay Transponder as well as a Search and Rescue Transponder. Thus, INSAT-3DR will provide service continuity to earlier meteorological missions of ISRO and further augment the capability to provide various meteorological as well as search and rescue services.

• INSAT-3DR is based on ISRO's two Tonne Class platform (I-2K bus) employing light-weight structural elements like Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic (CFRP).

• The satellite has a solar array generating 1700 Watts of power.

• INSAT-3DR will provide a variety of meteorological services to the country.

• It will have an advanced imager, a sounder and transponders for data relay and search and rescue missions.

• It will have an operational life of about ten years.

GSLV-F05

• It is the flight in which the indigenously developed Cryogenic Upper Stage (CUS) was carried on-board for the fourth time during a GSLV flight. Its flight was significant as it was the first operational flight of GSLV carrying CUS.

GSLV-F05 vehicle is configured with all its three stages including the CUS similar to the ones successfully flown during the previous GSLV-D5 and D6 missions that in January 2014 and August 2015 successfully placed GSAT-14 and GSAT-6 satellites.

Existing Meteorological satellites of India

KALPANA-1, INSAT-3A and INSAT-3D are three operational meteorological satellites of India. These satellites are operational in the geostationary orbit for the past one decade at 74, 93.5 and 82 degree East longitudes respectively.

KALPANA-1 and INSAT-3A have imaging systems that helps in providing images in the Visible, Near-Infrared, Shortwave Infrared, Water Vapour and Thermal Infrared bands.

Launched in 2013, Atmospheric Sounding System of the INSAT-3D provides vertical profiles of temperature (40 levels from surface to - 70 km), humidity (21 levels from surface to - 15 km) and integrated ozone from surface to top of the atmosphere. INSAT-3DR, the latest meteorological satellite built by ISRO, is similar to INSAT-3D.

ASSAM’S MAJULI BECOMES FIRST ISLAND DISTRICT OF INDIA

Assam’s Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal inaugurated Majuli as the 35th district of Assam. With this, Majuli became India's first island district.

The inauguration of Majuli as a district coincides with the 90th birth anniversary of music maestro Bhupen Hazarika.

Recently on 1 September 2016, Majuli replaced Brazil's Marajo to become the world's largest river island in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Key facts related to Majuli island

• Geographical features: It is a fluvial landform (a riverine delta), a unique geographical occurrence and a result of the dynamics of the Brahmaputra river system.

It is bounded by the river Subanisri and her tributaries on the North West, the kherkatia Suli (a spill channel of the river Brahmaputra) in the northeast and the main Brahmaputra River on the South and the South west.

It is the largest mid river delta system in the world. It is also comprised of many islets locally called the Chaporis.

Its area has shrunk from about 1250 square kilometers in 1891 to about 352 square kilometers in 2014 due to the erosion of river-bank.

• Vaishnavite cultural centre: It is the abode of the Assamese neo-Vaisnavite culture initiated around 15th century by the revered Assamese saint Srimanta Sankardeva and his disciple Madhavdeva.

There are a total of 30 Sattras or Vaishnavite monasteries including the Dakhinpat Satra which was established in 1584 AD.

Each Sattra, represents, within its region, a centre for cultural activities and even acts as a democratic institution to settle local disputes.

Most of the villages associate with respective Sattra, and the villagers partake in the activities of their own Sattra during festivals and occasions.

These sattra villages and other vernacular settlements house people from various ethnic origins all of whom have settled in Majuli like Mishings, Deori, Sonowal Kachari, Koch, Kaivartta and Nath.

• Flora and fauna: It is a hotspot for flora and fauna, harbouring many rare and endangered avifauna species including migratory birds that arrive in the winter season.

Among the birds seen here are the greater adjutant stork, pelican, Siberian crane and the whistling teal.

• Agriculture: Paddy, mustard, potato, pulses, sugarcane, wheat are the main crops cultivated on the island.

Various seasonal vegetables and fruits like orange, banana, pineapple, jackfruit, etc are also grown in abundant quantity.

• Recognition: In March 2011, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) of the Union Ministry of Culture proposed to nominate the island for inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage list.

 

 

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Last Updated on Thursday, 22 September 2016 05:00
 

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