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HM Rajnath Singh inaugurates pilot project of smart fencing along Indo-Pak Border in Jammu
On 17th September 2018, India’s first ‘smart fence’ pilot project was inaugurated by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh along the Indo-Pak border at the Border Security Force (BSF) frontier headquarters in Ploura, Jammu.
India’s first ‘smart fence’ pilot project:
i. The Smart fencing uses various devices for surveillance, communication and data storage. It will provide 24×7 surveillance on the border irrespective of the weather condition.
ii. This pilot project involves setting up of laser-activated fences and technology-enabled barriers to safeguard vulnerable gaps along the borders.
iii. It comprises two border fencing projects, each covering a 5.5 km stretch along the International Border (IB) in Jammu.
iv. One of the smart fence was developed by a Slovenian company and the other one has been developed and deployed by an Indian company.
v. The pliot project has been launched as a part of the Comprehensive Integrated Border Management System (CIBMS)programme of BSF.
vi. CIBMS is designed to safeguard regions where physical surveillance is not feasible due to inhospitable terrain or riverine borders.
About Border Security Force (BSF):
♦ Director General – KK Sharma
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi
NHA launched website & helpline number for Ayushman Bharat beneficiaries
On September 17, 2018, a website and a helpline number of the Ayushman Bharat — National Health Protection Mission (AB-NHPM) was launched to check the enrolment of the beneficiaries.
i. The website is: mera.pmjay.gov.in & the helpline is : (14555)
ii. This was launched by the National Health Agency (NHA), the apex body implementing the scheme.
iii. Here the prospective beneficiaries could check if their name is there in the final list.
iv. This can be checked through the mobile number of the beneficiary, which is verified through an OTP and then the KYC (know your customer) details can be completed online.
v. Additionally, ‘Ayushman Mitras’ would assist patients and hospitals to to verify the eligibility and enrolment to the scheme.
vi. All the beneficiaries will be given letters having QR codes which will be scanned and a demographic authentication will be provided.
The ambitious insurance scheme Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) which aims to provide a coverage of Rs 5 lakh per family annually and benefit more than 10 crore poor families will be rolled out from Jharkhand on September 23 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Union Trade Minister Suresh Prabhu participated in 2-day G-20 trade ministers meeting in Argentina
On September 14-15, 2018, Union Minister of Commerce & Industry and Civil Aviation, Suresh Prabhu participated in the 2-day G-20 Trade and Investment Ministerial Meeting, held in Mar del Plata in Argentina.
This is the first in 2 years.
To discuss developments in international trade and its implications for the global economy.
i. The theme for the G-20 Trade and Investment Ministerial Meeting was: “Building Consensus for Fair and Sustainable Development”.
ii. It was held under the chairmanship of:
H.E. Amb. Jorge Faurie, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Worship of the Argentine Republic, and
H.E. Mr. Dante Sica, Minister of Production and Labor of the Argentine Republic.
iii. All the G-20 countries participated with guests countries like:
Jamaica (on behalf of CARICOM), Senegal (on behalf of NEPAD) and Singapore (on behalf of ASEAN).
iv. Also, the following International Organizations participated in the meeting: IMF, ITC, OECD, UNCTAD, World Bank, WTO, CAF, and IADB.
v. Discussions on different areas of focus took place. They are:
opportunities and challenges of globalization, innovation and technological advancements.
vi. According to the meeting, economic growth remains robust, while trade shows signs of recovery since the financial crisis, with an increase of 4.7% in 2017 and a projected increase of 4.4% for 2018.
vii. The 36 heads of delegation agreed on the following:
- Agri-food global value chains should be considered very important for achieving sustainable food future. This can particularly benefit developing countries.
- Supporting MSMEs and women entrepreneurs.
- For increasing productivity, the New Industrial Revolution (NIR) and the adoption of digital technologies is very important.
G-20 members represent 75% of international trade, half of foreign direct investment flows, half of foreign flows and 80% of global production.
About G-20 countries:
♦ G-20 is made up of 19 countries and the EU.
♦ The countries are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States.
♦ The other invited members are Chile, Netherlands, Spain and representatives of regional groups of Jamaica, Rwanda, Singapore and Senegal.
2nd Mt Everest Friendship Exercise: Nepal and China conducts second joint military exercise in Sichuan province
On September 17, 2018, the second edition of Nepal-China joint military exercise ‘Mt Everest Friendship Exercise’ began in southwestern Sichuan province of China.
With a special focus on combating terror.
i. The 12-day long exercise would have 12 military personnel participating from Nepal’s Army.
ii. It is the second time that the Nepal Army is participating in a joint military drill with People’s Liberation Army.
iii. First such drill was held in April 2017.
iv. The drill will have special focus on:
- Combating Terror and
- Disaster management training.
♦ Capital: Kathmandu.
♦ Currency: Nepalese Rupee.
♦ Nepal and India’s Exercise: ‘Surya Kiran’ (having being conducted for 13 years and has 300 participants each)
♦ Capital: Beijing.
♦ Currency: Renminbi.
IHDI suggests high inequality in India, higher in Pakistan and Bangladesh: HDI report by UNDP
On September 17, 2018, according to the human development index (HDI) report released by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), India is ahead of Bangladesh and Pakistan in inequality-adjusted HDI (IHDI).
i. India has IHDI of 0.468, a 26.8% reduction from the unadjusted HDI of 0.640.
ii. According to gender inequality index (GII) of the report, India has a GII of 0.524, ranking it 127 out of 160 countries in 2017, while Pakistan is ranked 133 and Bangladesh 134.
iii. GII is the loss in human development due to inequality between female and male achievements in reproductive health, empowerment, and economic activity.
♦ Headquarters: New York city, USA.
BANKING & FINANCE
Total account holders increase to 32.61 cr with 20 lakh people joining the modified Jan Dhan scheme
On September 17, 2018, according to Finance ministry , 20 lakh people have joined the modified Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna (PMJDY) as on September 5, 2018.
i. The total number of account holders has now increased to 32.61 crore.
ii. During the period of August 15-September 5, the total deposits in 32.61 PMJDY accounts increased by Rs 1,266.43 crore.
iii. Now the total balance stands at Rs 82,490.98 crore as on September 5.
AWARDS & RECOGNITION
Kerala Tourism won two Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) gold awards
On September 17, 2018, Kerala Tourism bagged two prestigious gold awards of the Pacific Asia Travel Association(PATA) for its innovative marketing campaigns.
i. The awards were presented in Langkawi, Malaysia during PATA Travel Mart 2018.
ii. The awards were for the following:
- ‘Yalla Kerala’: It is travel advertisement print media campaign in the Gulf countries.
- For an innovative live-inspired posterof Kerala Tourism featuring a colorful boat and fishermen that could be put up straight as well as upside down.
iii. The Campaign and Posters were developed and designed by Stark Communications, the Advertising Agency of Kerala Tourism.
iv. These were under PATA’s Travel Advertisement Print and Travel Poster categories respectively.
The PATA Awards are presented to outstanding entries in four principal categories: Marketing; Education and Training; Environment, and Heritage and Culture.
These awards are sponsored by Macau Government Tourism Office (MGTO).
♦ Capital: Thiruvananthapuram.
♦ Chief Minister: Pinarayi Vijayan.
♦ Governor: Palanisamy Sathasivam.
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
Moutaz Mousa Abdallah elected Sudan’s new Prime Minister
On September 17, 2018, Moutaz Mousa Abdallah has become the Sudan‘s new Prime Minister.
i. He will hold the finance portfolio of the country.
ii. Additionally, a 21-member cabinet was sworn in at the presidential palace in Khartoum.
♦ Capital: Khartoum.
♦ Currency: Sudanese pound.
Motilal Oswal appointed Sanjay Athalye as new CEO for Aspire Home Finance
On September 17, 2018, Motilal Oswal Financial Services Ltd. appointed Sanjay Athalye as the new Managing Director and Chief Executive Officerof its housing finance company Aspire Home Finance Corporation Ltd (AHFCL).
i. Prior to joining AHFCL, he has worked with Indostar Capital Finance Ltd as Chief Risk Officer.
ii. He had previously worked in several leadership roles with Reliance Capital, Centurion Bank of Punjab, IDBI Bank, ICICI Bank, Reliance Telecom and Modi Xerox.
iii. Athalye holds a master’s degree in commerce from Nagpur University.
Prashant Kumar appointed as CFO of SBI
On September 17, 2018, State Bank of India appointed Prashant Kumar as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the Bank.
i. He replaced Anshula Kant who has been promoted as Managing Director of SBI.
ii. Prior to this appointment, Kumar was designated as Deputy Managing Director (HR) & Corporate Development Officer of SBI.
iii. Earlier he has worked as DMD and Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the Bank.
♦ Headquarters: Mumbai.
♦ Chairman: Rajnish Kumar.
♦ Tagline: With you all the way, Pure Banking Nothing Else, The Nation’s banks on us.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
ISRO’s PSLV-C-42 launched two U.K. satellites NovaSAR and S1-4
On September 16, 2018, ISRO launched its first night flight launch of PSLV-C-42 with two U.K. satellites named NovaSAR and S1-4 of Surrey Satellite Technology Limited.
i. This launch was a collaboration between Surrey Satellite Technologies Limited and Antrix Corporation Limited, ISRO’s commercial arm which earned Rs.220 crore for this launch.
ii. This mission made India launch 239 foreign satellites of 28 nations so far.
iii. It also marks the 44th launch of the Indian rocket the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) .
About the Satellites:
i. NovaSAR carries S-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and an Automatic Identification Receiver payloads.
ii. This would help in:
- Forestry mapping,
- Land use and ice cover monitoring,
- Flood and disaster monitoring and
- Maritime missions.
iii. It will be operated from SSTL’s Spacecraft Operations Centre in Guildford, UK.
iv. S1-4 is a high resolution earth observation satellite meant for surveying resources, environment monitoring, urban management and disaster monitoring.
i. ISRO announced to have 18 missions in the next six months, virtually one launch every two weeks.
ii. It would consist of: 10 satellite missions and 8 launch vehicle missions.
India is seeking a larger share of the more than $300 billion global space industry.
♦ Capital: London.
♦ Currency: Pound Sterling.
Isro unveils Polarimetry Doppler Weather Radar at Sriharikota spaceport
On September 16, 2018, Dr. K Sivan, Secretary, DOS/Chairman, ISRO inaugurated an S–band Polarimetry Doppler Weather Radar at SDSC/ISRO,Sriharikota
i. This is the 7th Radar manufactured in the country under “Make in India” Concept.
ii. It was indigenously developed by Bharat Electronics Limited, Bangalore under Technology Transfer from ISRO.
iii. It will be used for the observation of the weather system up to a range of 500 km and helps in early warning of severe weather events.
iv. It would also provide detailed information on a storm’s internal wind flow and structure.
ISRO and CNES of France plan constellation of 8-10 satellites for maritime surveillance: CNES
On September 17, 2018, India and France inked pact for maritime surveillance through a constellation of 8-10 satellites on the Indian Oceanregion.
This will be India’s largest space cooperation with any country.
To monitor sea traffic management.
i. This will be developed by the ISRO and French space agency CNES.
ii. It would take less than five years to launch the satellites.
iii. The mission would include:
- Design and development of joint products
- Techniques including those involving Automatic Identification System,
- To monitor and protect assets in land and sea.
Other projects between ISRO and CNES include:
i. MOU to share expertise on ISRO’s human mission programme Gaganyaan.
ii. The joint missions Megha-Tropiques (launched in 2011) and Saral-Altika (launched in 2013).
iii. Trishna satellite for land Infrared monitoring and the Oceansat3-Argos mission.
iv. The Indian space agency’s two major missions on inter-planetary missions to Mars and Venus.
Participation of CNES with other countries:
i. CNES is currently working with Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and German space agency DLR on Hayabusa 2/ MASCOT, a mission to asteroid Ryugu.
ii. Curiosity Rover (NASA) on Mars developed by CNES.
iii. CNES has also scheduled Mission BepiColombo to Mercury.
Headquarters: Paris, France.
MPATGM: man-portable anti-tank guided missile successfully tested by DRDO
On September 16, 2018, the Defence Research and Development Organisation successfully tested a low-weight indigenously developed man-portable anti-tank guided missile (MPATGM) at its Ahmednagar range.
i. It was the second MPATGM test as the DRDO tested the first one on September 15 in Maharashtra.
About man-portable anti-tank guided missile (MPATGM):
i. MPATGM is yet to get a formal name and is a major boost to the Make-in-India initiative.
ii. The key features are:
- A strike range of 2.5km,
- Weight of 14.5 kgs,
- Effective against both stationary and moving target and
- Can be used in day and night.
iii. It is expected to replace others which are in service with the Army namely:
- Second generation French origin anti-tank guided missile Milan and
- Soviet semi-automatic wire-guided missile Konkur.
iv. The missile will be deployed in the infantry and parachute battalions of the Indian Army.
♦ Headquarters: New Delhi.
♦ Defence Minister: Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman.
♦ Minister of State for Defence : Dr.Subhash Bhamre.
♦ Defence Secretary and Chairman of DRDO: Dr. G. Satheesh Reddy.
32nd Ahmet Comert Boxing Tournament in Istanbul, Turkey
From 10th to 16th September 2018, 32nd Ahmet Comert Boxing Tournament was held in Istanbul, Turkey.
i. Indian women boxers won a total of 7 medals: 3 gold, 2 silver and 2 bronze. Indian women’s team finished second in the tournament.
ii. India’s Bhagyabati Kachari received the most scientific boxer of the tournament award.
|1||Light Fly (48kg)||Gold||Monika Monika|
|2||Light Welter (64kg)||Gold||Simranjit Kaur Baatth|
|3||Light Heavy (81kg)||Gold||Bhagyabati Kachari|
|4||Fly (51kg)||Silver||Pinki Rani|
|5||Bantam (54kg)||Silver||M.Kumari Devi Maisnam|
|6||Light (57kg)||Bronze||Sonia Sonia|
|7||Super Heavy (+81kg)||Bronze||Kavita Cehahal|
2018 Japan Open (badminton) tournament
From 11th to 16th September 2018, 2018 Japan Open (badminton) tournament also known as Daihatsu Yonex Japan Open 2018 was held at Musashino Forest Sports Plaza in Tokyo, Japan.
i. 2018 Japan Open is the 16th tournament of the 2018 BWF World Tour. It is part of the Japan Open championships that are held since 1977.
ii. This tournament was organized by Nippon Badminton Association and sanctioned by the BWF (Badminton World Federation). Total prize money for the tournament was $700,000.
|Men’s Singles||Kento Momota (Japan)||Khosit Phetpradab (Thailand)|
|Women’s Singles||Carolina Marín (Spain)||Nozomi Okuhara (Japan)|
|Men’s Doubles||Marcus Fernaldi Gideon, Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo (Indonesia)||Junhui Li, Yuchen Liu (China)|
|Women’s Doubles||Yuki Fukushima, Sayaka Hirota (Japan)||Qingchen Chen, Yifan Jia (China)|
|Mixed Doubles||Zheng Siwei, Huang Yaqiong (China)||Yilyu Wang, Dongping Huang (China)|
Former Odisha minister Dolagobinda Pradhan passes away
On 17th September 2018, freedom fighter and former Odisha Minister Dolagobinda Pradhan died at his home following a short term illness, in Bhubaneswar, Odisha.
Death of Dolagobinda Pradhan:
i. Dolagobinda Pradhan was 93 years old. He was born on June 7, 1929 in Dihasahi of Cuttack, Odisha.
ii. He was a follower of Mahatma Gandhi. He participated in the Quit India Movement in 1942. He was imprisoned by the British government for 3 years and 2 months.
iii. He started his political career by joining the Indian National Congress (INC). He was elected to the Odisha Legislative Assembly from Cuttack Sadar constituency 2 times between 1980 and 1990.
iv. He was the Urban Development Minister of Odisha from 1989 to 1990.
Some National Parks in Odisha:
♦ Simlipal National Park
♦ Bhitarkanika National Park