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Current Affairs October 18 2018

 INDIAN AFFAIRS

NITI Aayog launches guidelines for public-private partnership in treatment of NCDs
On 17th October 2018, NITI Aayog released model guidelines for Public – Private partnership (PPP) in Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs).
Key Points:
i. According to the guidelines, the private partner will invest in upgrading, building and deploying human resources and hold the responsibility for operational management and service delivery.
ii. State governments will offer necessary physical space. Tariff structure for services offered under NCD care facility could be linked to the existing state and Central Government Health Insurance scheme.
iii.  If a government health insurance scheme is introduced in a state after adoption of CGHS (Central Government Health Scheme) tariff, tariff rates should be revised to the newly introduced scheme.
iv. All service under NCD care facility will be offered by a single entity: a trust, company or consortium under the PPP arrangement.
About NITI Aayog:
♦ CEO – Amitabh Kant
♦ Chairperson – Narendra Modi
♦ Vice Chairperson – Dr. Rajiv Kumar

Minister Mahesh Sharma and Hardeep Sing laid the foundation stone of the India Prime Ministers’ Museum
On October 15 2018,Minister of State for Culture Mahesh Sharma and Minister of Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh laid foundation for the construction of a museum for all Prime Ministers of the country at the Teen Murti Estate in New Delhi.

Minister Mahesh Sharma and Hardeep Sing laid the foundation stone of the India Prime Ministers’ Museumi. This expected to finish within a year with a cost 271 crore rupees. It will represent the works and contributions of all prime ministers for our country.
ii. The new museum will incorporate the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library (NMML)at the Teen Murti estate, the official residence of India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru.

RK Singh launches award scheme under ‘Saubhagya’ for achieving 100 % household electrification
On 15th October 2018, RK Singh, Minister of State (IC) for Power and New & Renewable Energy announced an award scheme under Saubhagya to felicitate the DISCOMs (Distribution Companies) / Power Department of States and their employees for achieving 100 % household electrification.
Key Points:
i. 8 states(Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Goa, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Punjab and Tamil Nadu) which had already achieved more than 99 % household electrification before the launch of Saubhagya are not eligible for the awards.
ii. Awards will be given in 3 categories for DISCOMs / Power Departments of:

  • Special Category States (which includes 7 North Eastern States, Sikkim, J&K and Uttarakhand)
  • other than Special Category States (which includes Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, Telengana, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal) having more than 5 Lakh un-electrified households
  • other than Special Category States having less than 5 Lakh un-electrified households

iii. Two quantum of award will be granted in each of the 3 categories. The 1st DISCOM / Power Department of States to achieve 100 % household electrification by 30th November 2018 will be awarded Rs. 50 Lakh under 1st quantum and Rs. 100 Crore under 2nd quantum.
iv. Other DISCOM/Power Department of States to achieve 100% household electrification by 31st December 2018 will be awarded certificate of appreciation for five officials.
About ‘Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana’ (Saubhagya) Scheme:
♦ Launched – September 2017
♦ Aim – to achieve universal household electrification in India by 31st March 2019

MoU signed between Lady Irwin College & Ministry of Rural Development for Roshni
On 16th October 2018, Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana – National Rural Livelihood Mission (DAY-NRLM), Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) and Lady Irwin College signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to establish Roshni – Centre of Women Collectives led Social Action.
Key Points:
i. Roshni is technically and financially supported by UNICEF India. It serves as a technical support unit at national level for DAY-NRLM. It is embedded in the Department of Development Communication and Extension, Lady Irwin College, New Delhi.
ii. Roshni aims to work with women collectives for social action on Food, Health, Nutrition and WASH (FHNW) interventions in line with DAY-NRLM Dashasutra (10 principles) strategy.
iii. It will support the implementation of convergent action plan under POSHAN Abhiyaan.
iv. Roshni will learn from Swabhimaan initiative and similar models. Swabhimaan was launched in 2016 to focus on women’s nutrition.
v. It is a joint initiative of DAY- NRLM and UNICEF India in 5 poorest DAY-NRLM resource blocks in 4 districts of 3 Indian states: Bihar, Chhattisgarh and Odisha.

India and Tanzania sign 2 MoUs in New Delhi
On 16th October 2018, India and Tanzania signed 2 Memoranda of Understandings (MoUs) in New Delhi.

India and Tanzania sign 2 MoUs in New DelhiKey Points:
i.  The MoUs were signed following India-Tanzania 9th Session of Joint Commission on Economic, Technical and Scientific Cooperation in New Delhi.
ii. They were signed in the presence of Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Tanzanian Foreign Minister Dr. Augustine Mahiga.
iii. The MoUs are signed between: Foreign Service Institute of India and Centre for Foreign Relation, Tanzania and National Research Development Corporation and Tanzania Industrial Research and Development Corporation.
iv. Discussions were held on enhancing cooperation in trade and investment, defence and security, development partnership, Science and Technology, oil and natural gas, culture and people-to-people relations.
About Tanzania:
♦ Capital – Dodoma
♦ Currency – Tanzanian shilling
♦ President – John Magufuli
♦ Prime Minister – Kassim Majaliwa

Government launches ‘Swastha Bharat Yatra’ campaign to create awareness about Food Safety
On 16th October,On the Occasion of the World Food Day, Government of India Launched a Campaign named “Swastha Bharat Yatra” to create awareness about Safe Food.

Government launches 'Swastha Bharat Yatra' campaign to create awareness about Food SafetyInitiative by Government:
The Government gives an annual subsidy of about Rs.2 Lakh crore with public Distribution System and through other welfare Schemes in order to make available of foods to all the people.
Key Points:
i. The Campaign is Launched by Central Governmnet association with the State Government and it is led by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).
ii. The ‘Swasth Bharat Yatra’ is launched simultaneously at Leh(in Jammu & Kashmir),Panaji(Goa),Thiruvananthapuram(Kerala),Puducherry,Ranji(Jharkhand) and Agartala(Tripura).
iii. Around 7500 Cyclists are to be participated in over 18000 Km relay cycle across the states and UT for 100 days from October 16 to January 27.
iv. This Campaign will spread message’s like ‘Eat Right India’,’Eat Right Mobile Unit’ and ‘Mobile Food Testing Unit’.
About the Index:
In Global Hunger Index,India Ranked 103rd Position out of 119 Countries.
About FSSAI:
♦ Formed:August 2011
♦ Chairman:Preeti Sudan
♦ CEO: Pawan Kumar Agarwal
♦ Headquarter:New Delhi.

Preparatory Meeting for the First National Summit on Invest in AYUSH held in New Delhi
On 16th October,Preparatory Meeting for the First National Summit on Invest in Ayush is held in New Delhi,which is Presided by the Union Minister of State(Independent Charge) of Ayush Shripad Yesso Naik.

Preparatory Meeting for the First National Summit on Invest in AYUSH held in New DelhiObjective:
This Summit is to encourage all the Departments of the Government and Private Companies to invest in AYUSH.
KeyPoints:
i. Many Initiatives are taken by Ministry to increase the market size of AYUSH for this they had a close relationship with FICCI,CII,PHD Chambers and ASSOCHAM etc.
ii. To strengthen the existing AYUSH Industry sector including manufacturers of AYUSH drugs, cosmetics, food supplements, hospital industry, etc.
iii.  Under the Champion Sector Scheme the Ministry  has taken a challenge to create one lakh job opportunities in AYUSH Sector .
iv. The Ministry tied up with Ministry of railways has agreed to set up AYUSH wing in 5 railway hospitals.
MOU’s Signed:
To achieve this,AYUSH minister signed an MOU with the Ministry of Micro Small and Medium Enterprises(MSME) to develop entrepreneurs in AYUSH Sector.
Initiative taken by the Government:
The Government of India allowed hundred percent Foreign Direct Investment
Achievement:
There is a global demand in the AYUSH and Herbal Product and the Export of the product has been increased from USD 354.68 million in the year 2014-15 to USD 401.68 million in the year 2016-17.

More than 40% of the world’s stunted children live in India: Report by NGO Sukarya
According to a report on ‘Public Health and Nutrition – Freeing Future Generations from Malnutrition’ compiled by the NGO Sukarya, more than 40 % of the world’s stunted children live in India.
i. The report was released by Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Ashwini Kumar Choubey on 16th October 2018.
ii. As per the report, poor nutrition causes 45 % of deaths among children below 5 years.
iii. 60 % of malnutrition in India is contributed by Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra

Justice Verma panel report wanted changes to sexual harassment
On October 14 2018,Central govt. had announced its plan to set up a panel of judges headed by the Justice J.S. Verma to look into the legal and institutional framework to control sexual harassment at workplaces after the impact of #MeToo campaign.
i. This will ensure that women are protected against sexual harassment at all the work places in both Public and private. The sense of security at the workplace will improve women’s participation in work, resulting in their economic empowerment and inclusive growth.
ii. In early 2013,a three-member committee headed by former judge J.S. Verma including Justice Leila Seth and senior lawyer Gopal was formed after a brutal sexual assault on a 23-year-old physiotherapy student on a moving bus in New Delhi.
iii. They termed Sexual Harassment Bill “unsatisfactory” and said it did not reflect the spirit of the Vishakha guidelines framed by the Supreme Court in 1997 for the sexual harassment at the workplace.
Vishakha guidelines:-
A set of procedural guidelines for sexual harassment cases in India. They were promulgate by the Indian Supreme Court in 1997 and were superseded in 2013 by the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013.

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

India ranked 58th most competitive economy in World Economic Forum(WEF) index
On 17th October,World Economic Forum(WEF) released the Index on Most Competitive Economy for 2018,in which India ranked 58th out of 140 Countries.India jumped 5 places from 2017.

India ranked 58th most competitive economy in World Economic Forum(WEF) indexKeyPoints:
i. India Scored 62.0 in the latest Global Competitiveness Index.This is the largest gain among all G20 economies.
iiUS topped the Index,Singapore and Germany followed it.
iii. China Ranked at the 28th Position with a score of 72.6 among the BRICS Countries,Russia ranked 43rd Position with a score of 65.6,South Africa with a score of 60.8 ranked 67th Position and Brazil ranked with 72nd Position with a score 59.5.
iv. The Country is ranked on the following factor: Institutions, Infrastructure; Technological readiness; Macroeconomic context; Health; Education and skills; Product market; Labour market; Financial system; Market size; Business dynamism; and Innovation.
v. Top 10 Countries:1.US, 2.Singapore, 3.Germany , 4.Switzerland, 5.Japan, 6.Netherland, 7.Hong Kong, 8.United Kingdom, 9.Swedan, 10.Denmark.
About World Economic Forum:
♦ Headquarters:Cologny,Switzerland
♦ Founder and Executive Chairman:Klaus Schwab

QS India University Rankings 2019: First-ever QS Ranking of India’s Higher Education Institutions
QS Quacquarelli Symonds, the global higher education think tank, has released “QS India University Rankings 2019”, its first standalone ranking of India’s higher education institutions.
i. The rankings include Public Universities, Private Universities and H.E. Institutions or Deemed Universities.
ii. IIT Bombay has been named India’s leading institution. Top 5 universities in QS India University Rankings 2019 are:

  • 1 – Indian Institute Of Technology, Bombay
  • 2 – Indian Institute Of Science Bangalore
  • 3 – Indian Institute Of Technology, Madras
  • 4 – Indian Institute Of Technology, Delhi
  • 5 – Indian Institute Of Technology, Kharagpur

BANKING & FINANCE

RBI norms to facilitate payments between mobile wallets using UPI
On October 17.2018,The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on released guidelines to facilitate payments among different mobile wallets, a move aimed at promoting digital transactions.
i. The inter-operability would be achieved in a phased manner such as inter-operability of PPIs issued in the form of wallets through UPI, between wallets and bank accounts through UPI, and interoperability for PPIs issued in the form of cards through card networks.
ii. UPI is a payments system launched by the National Payments Corporation of India in August 2016. It facilitates instant fund transfer between two bank accounts on the mobile platform, without having to provide any detail of the beneficiary’s bank account.
iii. MobiKwik, Oxigen, Paytm, ItzCash, and Ola Money are some of the popular mobile wallets in the country.

BUSINESS & ECONOMY

NIIF invests Rs 660 cr in HDFC Capital realty platform
i. National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) an investment of Rs 660 crore in HDFC’s real estate investment platform HDFC Capital Affordable Real Estate – 2 (H-CARE 2) .It enables investors in NIIF Fund of Funds to participate in the attractive mid-income and affordable housing sectors in India.
ii. H-CARE 2  has a wider platform targeting affordable and mid-income residential projects in India and will play a significant role in progressing towards the government’s flagship programme, Housing for All by 2022.

Nokia partners BSNL to implement industrial automation solutions
Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Nokia Solutions and Networks India Pvt Ltd to leverage Industry 4.0 for manufacturing excellence at Nokia’s factory in Oragadam, about 60 km south-west of Chennai.

Nokia partners BSNL to implement industrial automation solutionsi. BSNL and Nokia are demonstrating the ability to leverage automation across industries, showing how it can be replicated in other sectors such as automobile, oil and gas, mining, public safety and disaster management.
ii. Nokia factory will now leverage Industry 4.0 solutions such as Augmented and Virtual Reality (AR/VR), connected Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Big Data Analytics, and the Internet of Things to enhance operations and increase productivity.
iii. Industry 4.0 relies on low-latency, high-reliability networks as well as capabilities in robotics and artificial intelligence to drive new levels of automation and data exchange in manufacturing industries, resulting in improved operational efficiency and reduced costs.

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

Anna Burns wins 50th Man Booker Prize with Milkman
On 16th October,Anna Burns becomes the First Northern Irish writer to win the 50th Man Booker Prize for her Novel Milkman.

Anna Burns wins 50th Man Booker Prize with MilkmanKeyPoints:
i. Anna Burns,Milkman is her third full length Novel.Other 2 novels are ‘No Bones’ and ‘Little Constructions’.
ii. Milkman is an exploration of Northern Ireland’s three decades of sectarian violence told through the voice of a young woman.It is Published by Faber & Faber.
iii. Anna was Presented with the a trophy and a cheque worth 50,000 Euro.
About Man Booker Group:
♦ CEO:Luke Ellis
♦ Established:1969.

Khayyam named for 2018 Hridaynath Award for lifetime achievement
On 15th October 2018, music director Mohammed Zahur Khayyam Hashmi known as ‘Khayyam’, was named for 2018 Hridaynath Award for Lifetime Achievement.

Khayyam named for 2018 Hridaynath Award for lifetime achievementKey Points:
i. The award consists of a cash prize of Rs 100,000 and a memento. It will be presented by Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis at a ceremony on October 26, 2018 in Mumbai.
ii. Khayyam is a music composer, lyricist and writer. He is 91 years old. He started his music career in Ludhiana in 1943.
iii. He has received Padma Bhushan, National Award, Filmfare Award, etc. In 2016, along with his wife Jagjit Kaur he started the ‘Khayyam-Jagjit Kaur KPG Charitable Trust’.
About Hridaynath Award:
♦ Instituted by – Hridayesh Arts
♦ Named after – Hridaynath Mangeshkar, the youngest brother of Lata Mangeshkar
♦ This year’s award ceremony marks the 81st birthday of Hridaynath Mangeshkar

ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS

Competition Commission of India (CCI)  clears acquisition of Star Health by Safecrop Holdings
On 15th October 2018, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) approved the acquisition of Star Health and Allied Insurance Company by Safecrop Holdings.
i. Safecrop Holdings is a consortium of WestBridge AIF, investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala and Madison Capital.
ii. In August 2018, Safecrop Holdings signed definitive agreements with the shareholders of Star Health to purchase the shares.
iii. Star Health is based in Chennai. It was founded in 2006.  It offers health insurance, overseas mediclaim and personal accident policies.

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Chinese scientists develop nanogenerator to power wearable electronics
Chinese scientists have developed a new nanogenerator that can apply energy from human motions to continuously power wearable electronic devices.
i. Scientists of Zhengzhou University have developed a washable and wearable nanogenerator based on hydrophobic nanofiber.
ii. It has a woven structure. It can be attached to clothes to convert mechanical energy generated by human activities into electrical energy. This research was published in the Journal of Materials Chemistry A.

World’s first lab-grown oesophagus implanted in mice
For the first time in the world, scientists have grown functional sections of oesophagus in the lab using stem cells and successfully transplanted them into mice.
i. A study regarding this by researchers at the Francis Crick Institute in the UK and colleagues has been published in the journal Nature Communications.
ii. This development is the first of its kind for a complex multi-layered organ. This will help in overcoming the challenge of regenerative medicine, that different early-stage cells need different conditions to develop into the right cell type.
iii. This will help in developing treatments for children with oesophageal defects.

 SPORTS

Bengaluru FC wins Puttaiah Memorial Cup 2018
On 14th October 2018, Bengaluru FC won the Puttaiah Memorial Cup 2018 at the Bangalore Football Stadium, in Bengaluru.
i. Bengaluru FC defeated Madras Engineering Group (MEG) 2-1 in the final. This is their second Puttaiah Memorial Cup.
ii. Bengaluru FC’s Parag Shrivas won the best defender of the tournament award.

Suheil F. Tandon wins International Olympic committee (IOC) award
Suheil F. Tandon has won the International Olympic Committee’s Sport and Active Society Commission’s Grant Award for his contribution to sports for development.

Suheil F. Tandon wins International Olympic committee (IOC) awardKey Points:
i. Suheil F. Tandon is a social Entrepreneur. He is the Founder of Pro Sport Development (PSD) and Executive Director of Martha Farrell Foundation.
ii. International Olympic Committee (IOC) redistributes more than 90 % of its income to the wider sporting movement, to help athletes and sports organisations throughout the world.
iii. These grants are worth USD 25,000 each. They are awarded to grassroots organisations conducting effective sport for all programmes in various parts of the world.
iv. The award function was held during the Olympism in Action forum held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on 5th and 6th October 2018.
About International Olympic Committee (IOC):
♦ Headquarters – Lausanne, Switzerland
♦ President – Thomas Bach

BOOKS & AUTHORS

Rima Hooja authored “Maharana Pratap: The Invincible Warrior”
A new book on Maharana Pratap named “Maharana Pratap: The Invincible Warrior” authored by historian Rima Hooja has been released.
i. The book narrates the life of Maharana Pratap, the great Rajput warrior and also talks about the famous battle of Haldighati.