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Union Government launches UTTAM App for Coal Quality Monitoring
On April 5, 2018, Union Minister for Railways and Coal, Piyush Goyal launched UTTAM App for Coal Quality Monitoring.
Union Government launches UTTAM App for Coal Quality MonitoringAbout UTTAM App:
i. Abbreviation UTTAM stands for ‘Unlocking Transparency by Third Party Assessment of Mined Coal’.
ii. UTTAM App has been developed by Union Ministry of Coal and Coal India Limited (CIL) for all citizens and coal consumers to monitor the process of Third Party Sampling of coal across CIL subsidiaries.
iii. It has been designed with an aim to make the citizens, a stakeholder in coal governance  and ensure accountability, transparency, effectiveness and efficiency in coal ecosystem.
Quick Facts about Coal India Limited (CIL):
♦ Founded in – 1975
♦ Headquarters – Kolkata, West Bengal
♦ Current Chairman – Gopal Singh

Sushma Swaraj attended NAM Mid-Term Ministerial Conference in Baku
On April 4, 2018, Union External Affairs Minister, Sushma Swaraj  embarked on a three-day official visit to Azerbaijan’s capital city Baku to participate in Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Ministerial Conference.
Sushma Swaraj attended NAM Mid-Term Ministerial Conference in BakuMore information about NAM Mid-Term Ministerial Conference in Baku:
i. NAM Mid-Term Ministerial Conference was held in Baku on 5th and 6th April 2018.
ii. Theme of this conference was “Promoting international peace and security for sustainable development”.
iii. Before the conference, on April 4, 2018, Ms. Sushma Swaraj held bilateral consultations with her Azerbaijani counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov and discussed bilateral, regional and global issues of mutual interest.
iv. Ms. Swaraj  also called on Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev and First Vice-President Mehriban Aliyeva.
v. This was the first-ever bilateral visit of an Indian External Affairs Minister to Azerbaijan.
Quick Facts about Non-Aligned Movement (NAM):
♦ Established in – 1961
♦ Headquarters – Jakarta, Indonesia
♦ Current Presidency – Venezuela
♦ Membership – 120 Member countries

CBDT forms Working Group to assess tax risks of HNWIs migrating abroad
Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has constituted a five-member working group to examine the taxation aspects related to High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs) who are migrating abroad to other jurisdictions.
Working Group to assess tax risks of HNWIs:
i. This Working Group will be headed by Pragya Sahay Saksena, a joint secretary with Foreign Tax & Tax Research Division of CBDT.
ii. As per media reports, 23000 Indian millionaires (in dollar terms) have left India since 2004, which is alarmingly the highest in percentage terms among all countries.
iii. According to Ruchir Sharma, head of emerging markets and chief global strategist at Morgan Stanley Investment Management, in 2017 alone, 7000 millionaires left India.
iv. CBDT is concerned that this trend poses a substantial tax risk as these HNWIs may treat themselves as non-residents for taxation purposes in India even though they may have strong personal and economic ties India.
v. The working group will not only look into the tax implications arising out of such migration but will also recommend country’s policy stance for the same.

Government constitutes committee to regulate news portals
On April 4, 2018, Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting constituted a 10-member committee to regulate online portals, including news websites, entertainment sites and media aggregators.
Government constitutes committee to regulate news portalsCommittee to regulate news portals:
i. The committee includes  Secretaries of the departments of Home, Electronics and Information and Technology, Legal Affairs, and Industrial Policy and Promotion. CEO of MyGov and one representative each of the Press Council of India and National Broadcasters’ Association will also be part of this committee.
ii. In context of this news, it is important to note that in India, print and electronic media, both are regulated but online media does not come under the ambit of any regulatory mechanism.
iii. The committee will recommend measures to bring online information dissemination under regulation and will look at international best practices on such existing regulatory mechanism.
iv. Besides, it will also propose a policy for foreign direct investment in online media.

TRAI proposes Wi-Fi grid to bring down cost of internet by 90%
On April 5, 2018, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) put forth a concept of open architecture-based public Wi-Fi grid to bring down the cost of the internet by 90%.
More information about public Wi-Fi grid proposed by TRAI:
i. Public Wi-Fi grid proposed by TRAI entails various providers coming together to address aspects like services, access, payment, and authentication.
ii. TRAI has already tested this concept on pilot basis and findings from the same have been presented to Union Telecom Ministry to demonstrate the proof of concept of such an architecture.
iii. TRAI Chairman R S Sharma believes that Broadband proliferation across the country is an important pillar of Digital India and Wi-Fi is the cheapest option owing to low cost of equipment and free spectrum.
Quick Facts about TRAI:
♦ Founded in – 1997
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi
♦ Current Chairman – R S Sharma

Jammu gets its first tulip garden at Sanasar
Jammu’s first tulip garden has been set up at Sanasar in Ramban district of Jammu region.
Jammu gets its first tulip garden at Sanasar:
i. This is the first tulip garden in Jammu region. A tulip garden is present in Srinagar region of Jammu and Kashmir.
ii. This tulip garden has been set up at Sanasar health resort. Minister of State for Tourism, Priya Sethi said that, the tulip garden was opened for public on 29th March 2018.
iii. The tulip garden was developed by the Floriculture Department. There are no time restrictions for visiting the garden. Also, no fee is charged from visitors.
iv. This garden has been set up on half an acre of land near the Sanasar lake. Red, yellow and white tulips have been grown in the garden this year.
Some dams in Jammu and Kashmir:
♦ Uri Dam – Jhelum River
♦ Baglihar Dam – Chenab River

Khadi Store Locator App launched
On April 6, 2018, Minister of State for Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (Independent Charge), Giriraj Singh launched a mobile phone application for locating Khadi stores in the country.
Khadi Store Locator App launchedAbout Khadi Store Locator App:
i. The app was launched during 9th meeting of National Board of Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) in New Delhi.
ii. The app will help in locating 4000 Khadi stores across India.
iii. Currently, there are more than 8000 Khadi stores in India. Location for the remaining 4000 stores will also be available on the Khadi store locater app by the end of April 2018.
iv. It is to be noted that nearly 7 lakh privately owned household units are engaged in manufacturing Khadi and Village Industries products in India.
Quick Facts about Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC):
♦ Founded in – 1956
♦ Head Office – Mumbai, Maharashtra
♦ Current Chairman – V. K. Saxena

First ever “Van Dhan Vikas Kendra” to come up at Bijapur, Chhattisgarh
Union Ministry of Tribal affairs has approved establishment of the first multipurpose “Van Dhan Vikas Kendra” in Bijapur District of Chhattisgarh for value addition of Forest Produce.
About “Van Dhan Vikas Kendra”:
i. Van Dhan Vikas Kendra will be an important part of Central Government’s scheme of “Mechanism for marketing of Minor Forest Produce (MFP) through Minimum Support price (MSP) and development of Value chain for MFP”.
ii. This scheme is for socio economic development of tribals living in forests, for whom, collecting Minor Forest Produce (MFP) is a major source of livelihood.
iii. The first “Van Dhan Vikas Kendra” in Bijapur  District of Chhattisgarh will provide skill upgradation and capacity building training and will have primary processing and value addition facility.
iv. Initially, this Kendra will have processing facility for Tamarind brick making, Mahua flower storage facility and chironjee cleaning and packaging.

TN Government rolls out Amma Free Wi-Fi zones
On 5th April 2018, the Tamil Nadu government launched Amma Free Wi-Fi zones in 5 cities of Tamil Nadu.
Amma Free Wi-Fi zones:
i. On 5th April 2018, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami launched the Amma Free Wi-Fi zones initiative.
ii. This scheme was announced by former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa in September 2016.  It was said that Wi-Fi zones will be set up in 50 spots, mainly in larger bus terminals, parks and commercial complexes.
iii. Amma Free Wi-Fi zones have been introduced at the following five locations:

  • Labour Statue at Marina, Chennai
  • Central Bus stand at Salem
  • Central Bus stand at Tiruchirappalli
  • Gandhipuram Bus Stand in Coimbatore
  • Mattu Thavani Bus Stand in Madurai

iii. Users of Amma Free Wi-Fi zones will be offered 20 minutes of free internet service per day. After that the users will be charged Rs 10 per hour.
iv. This scheme will be implemented in 50 spots by Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV Corporation (TACTV). Cost of this project is Rs 8.50 crore.
Some dams in Tamil Nadu:
♦ Mettur Dam – Cauvery River
♦ Amaravathi Dam – Amaravathi River


Qatar introduces national service for women
Qatar has introduced national service for women for the first time as per a law issued by Qatar’s Emir Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.
Qatar introduces national service for womenQatar introduces national service for women:
i. On 4th April 2018, the Law No. 5 of 2018 on national service was issued by Emir Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.
ii. According to the law, women above the age of 18 can volunteer for national service. Men between the ages of 18 and 35 are required to perform compulsory military service, and now the service period has been increased from three months to one year.
iii. The new law also states that men must apply for compulsory enlistment in the military service within 60 days of turning 18 years.
iv. Persons who are caught avoiding military service will be imprisoned up to three and a fine of up to 50,000 Qatari riyals will be imposed.
About Qatar:
♦ Prime Minister – Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani
♦ Capital – Doha

Indo-Korean joint exercise SAHYOG-HYEOBLYEOG 2018 held
Indo-Korean joint anti-piracy, search and rescue exercise ‘SAHYOG-HYEOBLYEOG 2018’ was held on April 5, 2018 off the Chennai coast.
Indo-Korean joint exercise SAHYOG-HYEOBLYEOG 2018 heldHighlights of SAHYOG-HYEOBLYEOG 2018:
i. The exercise was a part of a proposed establishment of the memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Indian Coast Guard and South Korea Coast Guard to improve maritime security in Indian Ocean Region.
ii. As a part of this exercise, ships of the Indian Coast Guard and Korean Coast Guard ship ‘BADARO’ jointly undertook tactical manoeuvres and drills  to counter piracy and carry out maritime law enforcement tasks.
iii. Along with ICG Shaurya, C-423, C-431, Indian Coast Guard also deployed a Dornier aircraft to carry out sea-air coordinated search.
iv. In addition to the drills, experts from both sides held skilled academic discussions to share each other’s experiences on varied topics for mutual benefit.
Quick Facts about Indian Coast Guard:
♦ Established in – 1978
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi
♦ Current Director General – Rajendra Singh

India ranks 9th globally in cryptojacking activities
India has become the ninth most affected country in the world and second most affected country in Asia-Pacific Japan region in cryptojacking activities, as per the ‘Internet Security Threat Report’ presented by Symantec, a security solutions provider.
India ranks 9th globally in cryptojacking activitiesIndia ranks 9th globally in cryptojacking activities:
i. The secret use of a computing device to mine cryptocurrency with the use of malware is called Cryptojacking.
ii. According to the ‘Internet Security Threat Report’ by Symantec, Cryptojacking increased by 8,500% throughout the world in 2017.
iii. India is one among the top five countries as a source for IoT (Internet of Things) attacks.
Some important international airports in India:
♦ Veer Savarkar International Airport – Port Blair, Andaman and Nicobar Islands
♦ Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport – Guwahati, Assam
♦ Jay Prakash Narayan International Airport – Patna, Bihar


ICICI Bank 1st to get Swift’s new cross-border payment service
On April 6, 2018, global financial messaging cooperative, SWIFT (Society for World Interbank Financial Telecommunication System platform) announced that ICICI Bank has become its first Indian client to go live with an improved cross-border payments service.
ICICI Bank 1st to get Swift's new cross-border payment serviceICICI Bank goes live with SWIFT’s gpi Tracker:
i. The improved cross-border payments service which is being referred to is the gpi (Global Payment Innovation) Tracker, which has been extended to cover all payment instructions sent across the SWIFT network.
ii. SWIFT’s gpi tracker enables real-time payments tracking across correspondent banks and has a facility to track the payments instructions across the correspondent banks globally.
iii. At a later stage, SWIFT is also planning to add another feature that has an ability to stop and recall payment in case of a fraud or when a duplicate payment has been sent erroneously.
Quick Facts about ICICI Bank:
♦ Founded in – 1994
♦ Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
♦ Current MD & CEO – Chanda Kochhar
♦ Tagline – ‘hum hai na’, ‘khayaal aapka’

Indian Bank launches PFMS & also launched ‘Bharat QR’, a mobile payment collection
Indian Bank has introduced Public Financial Management System (PFMS) and has launched ‘Bharat QR’ facility.
Indian Bank launches PFMS & ‘Bharat QR’:
i. Indian Bank, Managing Director and CEO, Kishor Kharat launched these initiatives in Chennai.
ii. Indian Bank has introduced public financial management system aimed to benefit government agencies for utilising payment service.
iii. PFMS will help government agencies for processing payments, tracking, monitoring, accounting, reconciliation.
iv. The facility was being used for NREGA (National Rural Employment Guarantee Act) transactions in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, at present.
v. ‘Bharat QR’ is a mobile payment collection scheme to accept digital payments. Using this scheme, a merchant will receive Bharat QR sticker. This will enable customers to make payments through the QR facility.
vi.Merchants should place the stickers at the shop. Customers can scan that and pay through any digital transaction mode.
About Indian Bank:
♦ MD and CEO – Kishor Kharat
♦ Headquarters – Chennai


Flipkart signed a pact with MakeMyTrip
On 5th April 2018, MakeMyTrip Limited, and Flipkart announced that they have entered into a partnership regarding online bookings in the travel segment.
Flipkart signed a pact with MakeMyTripFlipkart signed a pact with MakeMyTrip:
i. Various brands of MakeMyTrip like MakeMyTrip, Goibibo, and redBus, will utilize the customer base of Flipkart to increase online travel bookings.
ii. Initially, domestic flight booking will be made available in Flipkart, which will be launched soon. Later hotel booking and bus ticket booking will also be made available on Flipkart.
About MakeMyTrip:
♦ Founder and group CEO – Deep Kaira
♦ Headquarters – Gurugram, Haryana


Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar will hold additional portfolio of Information, Public Relations and Languages department
Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar will also hold the additional portfolio of Information, Public Relations and Languages, now.
Manohar Lal Khattar – additional portfolio of Information, Public Relations and Languages:
i. A notification issued on this regard stated that, Harayana Governor Kaptan Singh Solanki has allocated the portfolio of Information, Public Relations and Languages to Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar with immediate effect.
ii. Earlier this portfolio was held by Haryana Women and Child Development Minister Kavita Jain.
Some National Parks in Haryana:
♦ Kalesar National Park
♦ Sultanpur National Park


HCL Technologies acquires C3i Solutions for $60 million
HCL Technologies has acquired C3i Solutions for USD 60 million, in a move to enhance HCL’s growth in life sciences and consumer services.
HCL Technologies acquires C3i Solutions for $60 millionHCL Technologies acquires C3i Solutions:
i. C3i Solutions is a wholly owned, independently operated subsidiary of Merck & Co, which is known as MSD outside the US and Canada.
ii. It offers multi-channel customer engagement services for life sciences and consumer packaged goods (CPG) industries.
iii. C3i’s expertise in the clinical, pharmacovigilance, and pharma sales support domains will help HCL offer more patient-centric services and enhanced services to its life sciences customers.
iv. HCL Technologies will acquire 100 % stock of Telerx Marketing that operates as C3i Solutions, through HCL’s step down subsidiary – HCL America Inc.
About HCL Technologies:
♦ President and CEO – C Vijayakumar
♦ Headquarters – Noida, Uttar Pradesh


South Africa pacer Morne Morkel to retire from International cricket
On April 3, 2018, South African fast bowler Morne Morkel bid adieu to international cricket at the conclusion of South Africa-Australia test series.
Overview of Morne Morkel’s career:
i. 33-year-old Morne Morkel had announced his retirement from International Cricket in February 2018 itself, after South Africa-Australia test series, stating that the demanding schedule has put a lot of strain on his family life.
ii. Morne Morkel made his international Test debut against India back in 2006.
iii. In his career, Morkel has played 86 Tests, 117 One Day Internationals (ODIs) and 44 T20Is, picking up 309, 188 and 47 wickets respectively.
iv.He also played for Rajasthan Royals, Delhi Daredevils and Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League (IPL).


International Day of Sport for Development and Peace – 6 April
On 6th April 2018, International Day of Sport for Development and Peace was celebrated all over the world.
International Day of Sport for Development and Peace – 6 AprilInternational Day of Sport for Development and Peace:
i. When: In 2013, the United Nations General Assembly declared 6 April as the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace. This day commemorates the inauguration of first Olympic Games of the modern era, in Athens in 1896.
ii. Why: This day is celebrated to highlight the contribution of sports and physical activity to education, human development, healthy lifestyle and a peaceful world.
iii. On this day, people are encouraged to promote the ways through which sport can help countries, communities and individuals to live a peaceful and prosperous life.
iv. For the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace 2018, Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD) of the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) has launched the online campaign #PlayforGlobalGoals.
About Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD) of United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA):
♦ Director – Ms. Daniela Bas
♦ Headquarters – New York