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 INDIAN AFFAIRS

President of India visits Madhya Pradesh on April 28 and 29
President of India, Ram Nath Kovind, visited Madhya Pradesh on 28th and 29th April, 2018.
President of India visits Madhya Pradesh on April 28 and 29Overview of President’s visit to Madhya Pradesh:
i. On April 28, 2018, President Kovind graced the 27th convocation of Dr. Harisingh Gour Vishwavidyalaya, Sagar.
ii. He also attended the Satguru Kabir Saheb Mahotsav, organised on the occasion of 620th Pragatosav of Satguru Kabir in Sagar.
iii. On April 29, 2018, President attended an ‘Asangathit Shramik Sammelan’ organised by Government of Madhya Pradesh, in Guna district. In Guna, he also addressed a function related to Mini Smart City Mission of Government of Madhya Pradesh.

Central assistance for irrigation projects in drought prone areas of Maharashtra
On April 27, 2018, Expenditure Finance Committee of Union Finance Ministry accepted the proposal of Union Ministry of Water Resources to provide Central Assistance for completion of 8 Major/Medium Irrigation projects and 83 Surface Minor Irrigation (SMI) projects in Vidarbha, Marathwada and drought prone areas of rest of Maharashtra.
Central assistance for irrigation projects in drought prone areas of MaharashtraCentral assistance for irrigation projects in Maharashtra:
i. Estimated cost for completion of these projects is Rs. 13651.61 Crore.
ii. Although Central Government will provide financial assistance to meet the cost, Maharashtra State Government too will have to raise a part of it, which can be done by availing a loan from National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD).
iii. All these projects are expected to be completed latest by 2022-23. Post completion, additional irrigation potential of 3.77 lakh ha will be created in the above stated regions.
Quick Facts about Maharashtra:
♦ Capital – Mumbai
♦ Current Chief Minister – Devendra Fadnavis
♦ Current Governor – Chennamaneni Vidyasagar Rao
♦ Important National Park – Sanjay Gandhi National Park

Delhi govt to set up Rogi Kalyan Samiti in every Assembly constituency
Delhi government will set up ‘Rogi Kalyan Samitis’ in each Assembly constituency and ‘Jan Swasthaya Samitis’ in state-run dispensaries, poly clinics and mohalla clinics in order to provide support to the health institutions in the national capital.
Delhi Govt’s initiative to support health institutions:
i. An official order in this regard was issued by Delhi Health and Family Welfare Department on April 26, 2018.
ii. As per the order, ‘Assembly Rogi Kalyan Samitis’ will have an advisory role in assisting health facilities, develop and customise strategies. The ‘Jan Swasthaya Samitis’ will be set up as its sub-committee.
iii. Each ‘Assembly Rogi Kalyan Samiti’ and ‘Jan Swasthaya Samiti’ will receive Rs 3 lakh as grand-in aid every year.

Lands get unique number in Andhra’s new project ‘Bhu Seva’
On 28th April 2018, Andhra Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister (Revenue) K E Krishnamurthy initiated Andhra Pradesh government’s ‘Bhu Seva’ (land hub) project aimed at offering integrated services related with land.
Lands get unique number in Andhra's new project 'Bhu Seva'Bhu Seva:
i. As per the Bhu Seva project, each land parcel will be given a Bhudhar Number. The Bhudhar Number is an 11 digit unique number.
ii. It will help in easy identification of the details of land parcel. A pilot project of this scheme was launched on 11th April 2018 in Jaggaiah Peta Mandal and Vuyyur Nagar Panchayat of Krishna district.
iii. K E Krishnamurthy said that, Andhra Pradesh is the first state in India to complete geotagging of each land parcel in the state. Ch Vijayamohan is the Mission Director of Bhu Seva Mission.
Some museums in Andhra Pradesh:
♦ Bhagwan Mahavir Government Museum
♦ Victoria Jubilee Museum
♦ Visakha Museum (Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation Museum)

Centre to launch National Disaster Database
Indian Government will soon launch a uniform and credible national-level disaster database on UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR’s) insistence to implement its commitment to the Sendai Framework.
About National Disaster Database:
i. India’s National Disaster Database will be a dynamic platform having locally obtained and validated data on nationwide losses of properties and lives occurring due to disasters.
ii. The state authorities will be directed to mandatorily report and feed all disaster-related losses in the platform on real time basis.
iii. Having National Disaster Database will not only reduce dependence on estimates given by external entities about the losses caused by man-made and natural disasters in India but will also help Central Government in deciding the quantum of future investments in critical infrastructure.
iv. During 2005 and 2014, India was affected by 167 disasters that caused damages to the tune of $47 billion.
v. According to UNISDR, India ranks among the top four countries in the world with highest number of reported disasters.

Indian Culinary Institute inaugurated
On 27th April 2018, K.J.Alphons, Minister of State for Tourism (Independent Charge) and Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology inaugurated the Indian Culinary Institute (ICI) at Noida.
Noida Campus of the Indian Culinary Institute inaugurated:
i. The Indian Culinary Institute (ICI) has been set up by the Ministry of Tourism. Dr.Mahesh Sharma, Minister of State for Culture (Independent Charge) and Minister of State for Environment, Forest and Climate Change was the Chief Guest of the event.
ii. The Noida campus is one of the two ICI campuses. The other one is developed at Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh.
iii. The Noida campus has been set up on an area of 5 acres. The total project cost is Rs.98 crore.
iv. It comprises academic block, commercial area, hostels for boys and girls, guesthouse for visiting faculties, water harvesting, etc.
v. ICI offers courses in Diploma, Under Graduation, and Post-Graduation and research in Culinary Arts.
vi. It has well equipped kitchen labs, micro biology lab, Cuisine theatre, Training Restaurants, fully equipped class rooms, library, and a modern hostel which can accommodate 400 students.
Some stadiums in Uttar Pradesh:
♦ Green Park Stadium
♦ D. Singh Babu Stadium
♦ Dr. Akhilesh Das Stadium

Naveen Patnaik launches Odisha Skills, Dharmendra Pradhan opens 3 facilities
On 28th April 2018, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik inaugurated ‘Odisha Skills 2018’, the state-level chapter of India Skill competition organised by National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) in Cuttack, Odisha.
Naveen Patnaik launches Odisha Skills, Dharmendra Pradhan opens 3 facilitiesOdisha Skills 2018:
i. The Odisha Skills 2018 coincided with the birth anniversary of the architect of modern Odisha Madhusudan Das. It is a two-day competition.
ii. It saw participation from nearly 7000 participants in six sectors and 25 skills from all over Odisha.
iii. Union Petroleum and Skill Development Minister Dharmendra Pradhan also inaugurated a skill-cum-common facility centre for filigree craftsman of Cuttack.
iv. He also launched a Pipe-Fitter-City Gas Distribution course that will begin at the Skill Development Institute at Bhubaneswar from 9th May 2018.
v. He also launched the Urja Ganga Gas Pipeline skilling project in Sukinda in Jajpur district.
vi. The project will offer training to semi-skilled and unskilled workers involved in the Jagdishpur-Haldia and Bokaro-Dhamra natural gas project.
vii. He said that within six months Cuttack will host an International Filigree Exhibition-cum-Workshop.
viii. A tripartite MoU was signed between NSDC and Gems and Jewellery Skill Council of India and Edujobs Academy to work for the Cuttack facility, on the occasion.
ix. He awarded pre-learning certificates issued by the Skill Development Institute to five goldsmiths. He said that within two years all goldsmiths and filigree artisans of the city will be offered training and certificates.
About National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC):
♦ MD & CEO – Manish Kumar
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi

HP CM inaugurates Rs 39.65 crore water supply scheme in Mandi
On 27th April 2018, Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur inaugurated the Kanda Pattan-Sarkaghat Water Supply Schemeat Cholthara in Mandi district, Himachal Pradesh.
Kanda Pattan-Sarkaghat Water Supply Scheme:
i. Jai Ram Thakur said that, the Kanda Pattan-Sarkaghat water supply scheme has been developed at a cost of Rs 39.65 crore. It will benefit more than 31,000 people of that region.
ii. He said that 30 new developmental schemes are present in the first budget presented by his government.
iii. He said that, out of 69 highways sanctioned for Himachal Pradesh, tenders have been floated for 53 projects.
iv. He added that, the age for getting old age pension without any income criteria has been decreased to 70 years from 80 years.
v. He announced Rs 1.40 crore for construction and metalling of several roads, Rs 2 crore for building bridges, Rs 1 crore each for establishing laboratory and building science blocks in four senior secondary schools of that area.
Some National Parks in Himachal Pradesh:
♦ Great Himalayan National Park
♦ Inderkilla National Park
♦ Khirganga National Park

Sikkim C.M becomes India’s Longest serving C.M
On 29th April 2018, Sikkim Chief Minister Pawan Kumar Chamling surpassed the record of former West Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu as the longest serving Chief Minister of any Indian state.
Sikkim C.M becomes India's Longest serving C.MSikkim C.M becomes India’s Longest serving C.M:
i. Jyoti Basu was Chief Minister of West Bengal for 23 years from 21st June 1977 till 6th November 2000.
ii. Pawan Kumar Chamling became Chief Minister of Sikkim on 12th December 1994. He completed his 24th year as Sikkim Chief Minister on 29th April 2018.
iii. He entered politics in 1973. He became a member of the Legislative Assembly in 1985.
iv. He founded Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) in 1993. He formed the state government in 1994.
v. He is also a poet with pen name ‘Kiran’. He received Bhanu Puraskar award in 2010.
Some wildlife sanctuaries in Sikkim:
♦ Maenam Wildlife Sanctuary
♦ Kyongnosla Alpine Sanctuary
♦ Fambong Lho Wildlife Sanctuary

BANKING & FINANCE

India GDP likely to grow 7.5 pc in FY19: Deutsche Bank
As per a report by Deutsche Bank, Indian economy is likely to register Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of 7.5 per cent in financial year 2018-19.
Outlook of Indian Economy – Deutsche Bank:
i. Deutsche Bank’s 7.5 per cent growth forecast for 2018-19, marks an improvement as compared to the likely 6.7 per cent growth in 2017-18.
ii. Positive factors leading to higher growth: Improvement in capacity utilisation which should expedite private sector capex recovery, uptick in GST collections due to implementation of e-way bill, bad loans resolution plan and Government’s focus on infrastructure investment.
iii. However, higher global oil prices, anticipated rate hike cycle from the RBI and negative impact of the banking sector frauds on credit may pose a challenge to higher growth trajectory.
Quick Facts about Deutsche Bank:
♦ Founded in – 1870
♦ Headquarters – Frankfurt, Germany

HDFC Bank unveils IRA 2.0
HDFC Bank has launched IRA 2.0, the second version of its interactive humanoid at the Koramangala branch in Bengaluru, Karnataka.
HDFC Bank unveils IRA 2.0More Details about HDFC Bank’s IRA 2.0:
i. IRA 2.0 has been developed by HDFC Bank in collaboration with Invento Makerspaces and Senseforth Technologies.
ii. Through voice based navigation, IRA will interact with customers, answer bank-related queries, frequently asked questions and will guide them inside the branch.
iii. The first version of IRA, which was launched in January 2017 at HDFC Bank’s Kamala Mills Branch in Mumbai and is currently stationed at its Palarivattom branch in Kochi, Kerala.
iv. HDFC Bank has also launched its virtual assistant ‘EVA’ (Electronic Virtual Assistant) on Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant which allows customers to procure basic bank account related information through voice chat from the comfort of their homes, without having to pick up a phone, tablet or laptop.
v.Information that can be procured through HDFC Bank’s ‘EVA’: Information about bank’s product features, interest rates, fee and charges, credit card reward points/payment date/expiry date, branches address, IFSC, process to block/unblock cards and what to do if one forgets pin.
Quick Facts about HDFC Bank:
♦ Founded in – 1994
♦ Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
♦ Current MD – Aditya Puri
♦ Tagline – ‘We Understand Your World’

Economic growth likely to hit 7.5 pc in FY19: Niti VC Rajiv Kumar
As per Niti Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar, Indian economy is expected to grow by at least 7.5 per cent in 2018-19.
Outlook of Indian Economy – Rajiv Kumar:
i. Mr. Rajiv Kumar believes that India’s economic growth in 2018-19 will come on back of improvement in investment cycle and capacity utilisation.
ii. He added that overall economic environment has become extremely positive, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflow in India is increasing and capacity utilisation has risen to 74 %.
iiiMr. Rajiv Kumar has recommended that Indian Government should now focus on consolidating reforms that have been initiated in past four years.

BUSINESS & ECONOMY

Govt. collects Rs 7.41 trillion from GST
As per data provided by Union Finance Ministry, Government has collected Rs 7.41 trillion in taxes in the first year of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) ending March 31, 2018.
Govt. collects Rs 7.41 trillion from GSTGST collection figure:
i. Rs. 7.41 trillion collection includes Rs 1.19 trillion of Central Goods and Services Tax (CGST), Rs 1.72 trillion of State Goods and Services Tax (SGST), Rs 3.66 trillion of Integrated Goods and Services Tax (IGST) and Rs 620.21 billion of cess for first eight months and Rs 240 billion addition for March 2018.
ii. Tax collected under GST regime is split 50:50 between the Centre (CGST) and the states (SGST) while tax on inter-state movement of goods as well as imports is Integrated-GST (IGST), that accrues to the Centre.
iii. Besides, cess levied over/above these taxes on sin and luxury goods is used to compensate revenue shortfall faced by states on account of implementation of GST.
Quick Facts about GST:
♦ Rolled out on – July 1, 2017
♦ Type – Indirect Tax
♦ Tax Slabs – 5%, 12%, 18% 28%

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

Parijat Industries wins prestigious NSCI Sarvashrestha Suraksha Puraskar
Parijat Industries (India) Pvt Ltd, an Indian agrochemical company, has been conferred the “Sarvashrestha Suraksha Puraskar” gold award for the year 2017.
Parijat Industries wins prestigious NSCI Sarvashrestha Suraksha PuraskarParijat Industries wins prestigious NSCI Sarvashrestha Suraksha Puraskar:
i. The award was given away by Santosh Kumar Gangwar, Minister of State in the Ministry of Labour and Employment, at an event in New Delhi.
ii. The award was given for consistent and effective operational safety, performance and executing occupational safety and health (OSH) management system procedures at Parijat Industries (India)’s manufacturing plant at Ambala.
iii. The NSCI (National Safety Council, India) Safety Awards are national level awards for occupational safety, health and environment.
iv. They are awarded for effective Safety Management System and efficient safety and health performance by organisations in manufacturing, construction and MSME sectors.
About Parijat Industries (India):
♦ Chairman and Managing Director – Keshav Anand
♦ Corporate Office – New Delhi

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

SBI rejigs portfolio of top brass
India’s largest bank, State Bank of India (SBI) has reshuffled the roles of its top management.
New roles of SBI Top Management:
i. Padmaja Chunduru, who was in charge of digital banking and new businesses will now be in charge of SBI’s global treasury operations while C Venkat Nageswar, who was in charge of global treasury operations will be the new MD & CEO of SBI Capital Markets.
ii. PN Prasad, who was heading mid corporate group will be the chief risk officer while DA Tambe will be the new chief information officer.
iii. Among other important reassignments, Arijit Basu, who was earlier heading SBI Life, will now head corporate accounts group while Sanjeev Nautiyal has been appointed as CEO of SBI Life.
Quick Facts about State Bank of India (SBI):
♦ Renamed in – 1955
♦ Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
♦ Current Chairman – Rajnish Kumar

SPORTS

56th Belgrade International Boxing Tournament in Serbia
56th edition of Belgrade International Boxing Championship was held at Belgrade in Serbia from 24th to 28th April, 2018.
56th Belgrade International Boxing Tournament in SerbiaIndian Boxers’ Performance at 56th Belgrade International Boxing Tournament:
i. Indian boxers won three gold, five silver and five bronze medals at this championship.
ii. Among Gold medal winners,  Sumit Sangwan won the final bout by defeating Ecuador’s Castillo Torres in 91 kg category.
iii. Indian woman boxer Nikhat Zareen won Gold medal in 51 kg by defeating Greece’s Koutsoeorgopoulou Aikaterini in the final bout.
iv. Himanshu Sharma (49 kg) too won Gold medal by defeating Algeria’s Mohammed Touareg in the final bout.
v. Silver Medal Winners: Jamuna Boro (women, 54kg category) and Ralte Lalfakmawii (women, +81kg), Laldinmawia (men, 52kg category), Varinder Singh (men, 56kg category) and Pawan Kumar (men, 69kg category).
vi. Bronze Medal Winners: Narender (men, +91kg category), Rajesh Narwal (women, 48kg category), Priyanka Thakur (women, 60kg category), Rumi Gogoi (women,75kg category) and Nirmala Rawat (women, 81kg category).

BOOKS & AUTHORS

Former PM Manmohan Singh launches economist Rao’s book
On 26th April 2018, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh released ‘My Journey from Marxism-Leninism to Nehruvian Socialism’, a book written by former Planning Commission and Finance Commission member C H Hanumantha Rao.
Former PM Manmohan Singh launches economist Rao's bookMy Journey from Marxism-Leninism to Nehruvian Socialism:
i. Manmohan Singh said that, C H Hanumantha Rao is a creative thinker, social activist, and distinguished economist.
ii. He said that, the book shows that C H Hanumantha Rao was not very happy with Emergency and the suspension of human rights and civil rights in India, referring to the 1975 Emergency imposed by late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
Nick names of some Indian cities:
♦ Auroville (Pondicherry) – City of Dawn
♦ Jamshedpur (Jharkhand) – Steel city, Pittsburg of India
♦ Dhanbad (Jharkhand) – Coal Capital of India

IMPORTANT DAYS

International Dance Day – April 29, 2018
On 29th April 2018, International Dance Day was celebrated all over the world.
International Dance Day – April 29, 2018International Dance Day:
i. International Dance Day was founded in 1982 by the Dance Committee of ITI (International Theatre Institute).
ii. International Dance Day is celebrated every year on 29th April, which marks the birthday of Jean-Georges Noverre, the creator of modern ballet.
iii. Every year a an International Dance Day Message from an outstanding choreographer or dancer is circulated all over the world.
iv. The author of the message is chosen by the International Dance Committee of ITI and the Executive Council of ITI.
v. This day aims to celebrate dance, cross all political, cultural and ethnic barriers, and bring people together through dance.
About International Theatre Institute (ITI):
♦ President – Mohamed Saif AL-AFKHAM
♦ Headquarters – Shanghai, China