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Odisha launches grid connected roof top solar projects
Chief Minister of Odisha Naveen Patnaik has inaugurated grid connected roof top solar programme to encourage the public participation to harness renewable energy.
Under this programme, the consumers can introduce small solar plants on their rooftops and consume the generated solar power during day time. Excess power can be exported to the grid through their service cable.
i.These decentralized systems also have the ability to strengthen the grid. It will reduce power loses .Grid connected roof top solar systems are best options for adding renewable solar capacity.
ii.A web platform www.rtsodisha.gov.in was also launched to help project stakeholders interact with consumers and provide services.This website was made by Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA).
iii.It will be useful in making the Rooftop Solar Program easily accessible to the common citizens….Click here to view complete detail
Cabinet approves New Central Sector Scheme – “Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana”
The Cabinet Committee has approved the renaming of the new Central Sector Scheme – SAMPADA (Scheme for Agro-Marine Processing and Development of Agro-Processing Clusters) as “Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana (PMKSY) “for the period of 2016-20 coterminous with the 14th Finance Commission cycle.
The new Central Sector Scheme – SAMPADA (Scheme for Agro-Marine Processing and Development of Agro-Processing Clusters) has approved with same allocation and period in May 2017.
Purpose of PMKSY
The Main purpose of PMKSY is to supplement agriculture, modernize processing and decrease Agri-Waste.
Benefits of PMKSY
This will result in creation of modern infrastructure with efficient supply chain management from farm gate to retail outlet. It will provide a big boost to the growth of food processing sector in the country.
It will help in providing better prices towards doubling of farmer’s income and create huge employment opportunities especially in the rural areas….Click here to view complete details
Cabinet approves MoU between India & Nepal on Drug Demand Reduction and Prevention of Illicit Trafficking in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substance
The Union Cabinet has approved for signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Nepal on Drug Demand Reduction and Prevention of Illicit Trafficking in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances and precursor chemicals and related matters.
i.It indicates the mechanism of information exchange and the competent authorities in the two countries who are responsible for the implementation of the MoU and exchange of any information.
ii.Cooperation on drug matters is expected to curb the illicit traffic of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursor chemicals in the two countries.
iii.It helps to cooperate in drug demand reduction through prevention, awareness, education and community based programmes, treatment and rehabilitation.
iv.Under this MoU exchange information of operational, technical and general nature in drug matters, and exchange literature on their existing laws, rules, procedures and any further amendments to the existing legislation.
v.In accordance with the spirit of UN Conventions on Narcotic Drugs, effort is made to enter into Bilateral Agreements or MoUs with neighbouring countries and the countries which have a direct bearing on the drug situation prevailing in our country.
OBC Creamy Layer Bar raised to Rs 8 Lakh P.A.
The government has raised the income limit defining ‘creamy layer’ for OBC reservation by Rs two lakh per annum. The Union cabinet has approved setting up of a panel for sub-categorisation within the other backward classes for even distribution of reservation benefits.
i.According to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley the government has hiked the creamy layer ceiling for the Other Backward Classes to Rs 8 lakh per annum from the existing Rs 6 lakh for central government jobs.
ii.Those in the OBC category earning upto Rs 8 lakh annually will now be included in reservation benefits.
iii.As per the finance minister a proposal to extend the decision to public sector undertakings was under “active consideration” of the government.
iv.The present ceiling of Rs six lakh came into being in 2013.
v.Jaitley also announced the decision of the cabinet to set up a commission to work out sub-categorisation within other backward classes for a “more equitable distribution of reservation benefits amongst the OBCs”.
EPFO organizes Tiranga Yatra to Commemorate 75th anniversary of Quit India Movement in Mumbai
Quit India Movement that began on 9th August 1942 which finally culminated into freedom of India. The nation is observing the 75th anniversary of Quit India Movement. The Tiranga Yatra is an opportunity to achieve ‘Sankalp’ to ‘Siddhi’ towards a ‘New India’.
i. Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation, is participating in the celebrations of 75thanniversary of Quit India Movement by organizing Tiranga Yatra.
ii.All the workers from different industries, including EPFO participated in the Tiranga Yatra organized in Mumbai on 23rd August 2017.
iii.The Tiranga Yatra was flagged off by the Minister of State(IC) for Labour and Employment, Shri Bandaru Dattatreya, near Indian Oil Office, Bandra(E), Mumbai and culminated at EPFO Regional Office at Bandra Mumbai.
iv.Government is committed for providing housing to all by 2022 and EPFO has launched Housing Scheme where 90% of the EPF money can be withdrawn in addition to monthly payment of EMI out of the future accumulations in their provident fund.
Dr. V. Kamakoti, headed Task Force on Artificial Intelligence (AI) for India’s Economic Transformation
Commerce and Industry Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman has constituted a Task Force on Artificial Intelligence (AI) for India’s Economic Transformation.
i.The task force will have the Chairperson Dr. V. Kamakoti, IIT Madras.
ii.The panel will comprise of experts, academics, researchers and industry leaders and will explore possibilities to leverage AI for development across various fields.
iv.As per the Nirmala Sitharaman driven by the power of big data, high computing capacity, artificial intelligence and analytics Industry 4.0 aims is to digitise the manufacturing sector.
v.Official participation from the following organizations shall also be requested:
(a) NITI Aayog.
(b) Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.
(c) Department of Science & Technology.
K Rajeswara Rao headed Panel on National Mineral Policy to submit report by Oct-end
The National Mineral Policy, 2008 should be reviewed is mandatory and the panel suggest a new framework will submit its report by October-end.
i.The order from Supreme Court in its judgement dated August 2, 2017 directed Union of India to revisit the National Mineral Policy 2008 and announce a fresh, more effective, meaningful and implementable policy before December 31, 2017.
ii.It has been decided to set up a committee to review the National Mineral Policy, 2008, and for submission of a report for a new National Mineral Policy.
iii.The 29-member panel has headed by Mines Additional Secretary K Rajeswara Rao. It consisting of joint secretaries from ministries like coal, steel, shipping, road, transport and highways and finance as its members.
Alibaba Founder Jack Ma becomes Asia’s richest person
Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba’s Founder Jack Ma has become Asia’s richest person with net worth of $38.3 billion.
i.Jack Ma is currently ranked as the world’s 18th richest man.
ii.Alibaba reported a total revenue growth of 56% for the quarter ended June 2017, driven by the growth in online sales.
iii.In the latest rankings Tencent Chairman Ma Huateng has slipped to No. 2, with a fortune worth $36.7 billion.
iv.Ma Huateng is No. 19 in the world and in No. 2 in Asia.
v.Tencent has reported a larger-than-expected 70% increase in net profit for the first six months of 2017, fueled by growth in the company’s online and mobile game business, as well as gains in online payments and advertising.
Banking & Finance
RBI to issue Rs 200 notes: Finance MinistryAccording to a notification in the Gazette of India the Modi government has notified introduction of new Rs 200 notes on 23rd August 2017.
i.The Reserve Bank of India has announced that it will start issuing the Rs 200 notes from 25th August from select RBI offices and some banks.
ii.The move is widely expected to ease the shortage of lower-denomination currency bills.
iii.The notes will be in the Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series, bearing signature of Governor Urjit Patel.
Key Specifications of the Note, as detailed by the RBI:
- See through register with denominational numeral 200.
- Latent image with denominational numeral 200.
- Denominational numeral 200 in Devnagari.
- Portrait of Mahatma Gandhi at the centre.
- Micro letters ‘RBI’, ‘Bharat’ (in Hindi), ‘India’ and ‘200’….Click here to view more details
Dhanlaxmi Bank, DHFL Pramerica tie up for bancassurance
DHFL Pramerica Life Insurance Company has signed on Kerala-based Dhanlaxmi Bank as its bancassurance partner announced on 24th of Aug 2017.
i.Under which the Kerala-based Dhanlaxmi Bank will distribute retail and group life insurance products to its customers across 260 branches in India.
ii.The bank anticipates an annual incremental income of ₹20-30 crore from this distribution business.
iii.With this tie-up, the company is in a strong position to consolidate its presence in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
iv.The company will work to increase penetration of life insurance by offering segmented products through digital and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) capabilities as well as by making insurance more accessible.
About Kerala-based Dhanlaxmi Bank
Dhanlaxmi Bank Ltd is an old private sector bank headquartered in Thrissur City, Kerala, India.
Managing Director and CEO of Dhanlaxmi Bank: G Sreeram
Appointments & Resigns
Nandan Nilekani appointed Chairman of Infosys board
Nandan Nilekani co-founder of India’s second-largest software services exporter has appointed as non-executive chairman of the board.
i.R. Seshasayee, chairman of the board, along with former CEO and managing director Vishal Sikka, Jeffrey Lehman and John Etchemendy had stepped down from the board.
ii.Nandan Nilekani has done electrical engineer from IIT Bombay.
iii.Nilekani was the CEO at Infosys from 2002 to 2007 and also served as co-chairman of the board before his departure in 2009 to head the Aadhaar project.
Science & Technology
Maharashtra launches web portal to help with competitive tests
Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE) set up portals to help students to prepare for competitive exams on their own.
i.An online question bank will be created for students attempting the competitive tests, which can be accessed for free.
ii.To prepare the question bank, the board has asked teachers and subject experts across Maharashtra to send questions by 30th September.
iii.The questions will be shortlisted and uploaded by board officials. Portals for physics, chemistry, mathematics and biology for Class 11 and Class 12 are up and running.
iv.Easily accessible portal will help students to crack the competitive exams without signing up for expensive coaching programmes.
v.In Mumbai, more than 43 colleges offer integrated courses that are usually for coaching students for JEE and NEET exams.
vi.There are several students across Maharashtra who cannot afford coaching programmes and so they fail to crack these tests.
vii.This prevents them form pursuing their medical and engineering dreams.
London to host 2018 table tennis team World Cup
According to the World Table Tennis governing body announced the 2018 ITTF Team World Cup will be held in London from February 22 to 25 in 2018.
i.The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) has awarded the hosting rights for the event.
ii.It is the second most prestigious team tournament after the World Championships.
iii.The Team World Cup, last held in Dubai in 2015, comprises 12 men’s and 12 women’s teams.
iv.It includes the host team, Continental Champions and the other top finishers at the 2016 World Team Table Tennis Championships.
v.England hosted the individual men’s World Cup at Liverpool in 2012.
vi.This will be the first major table tennis-only event to be staged in London since the 1954 World Championships at Wembley.
vii.England has also hosted the World Championships in Birmingham in 1977 and Manchester in 1997.
London is the capital and most populous city of England and the United Kingdom.
London is a city in Southwestern Ontario, Canada along the Quebec City–Windsor Corridor.
London is at the confluence of the Thames River, approximately 200 kilometers from both Toronto, Ontario and Detroit, Michigan and about 230 kilometers from Buffalo, New York.
Ronaldo named UEFA player of season for 2016–2017
Cristiano Ronaldo was named UEFA Player of the Season for 2016–2017 on 25th August 2017. After a campaign which saw the Portuguese superstar help Real Madrid to the La Liga and Champions League double.
i.It was the third time that Ronaldo had won the award which was presented on the sidelines of the Champions’ League group stage draw.
ii. Ronaldo won the UEFA award in 2013–2014 and 2015–2016 and in the Champions League last season.
iii. Lionel Messi has won the prize on two occasions and capture a fifth Ballon d’Or title.
iv. Juventus goalkeeper and Captain Gianluigi Buffon was second in the voting ahead of Messi.
Books & Authors
Raghuram Rajan pens book ‘I Do What I Do’
Former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan has penned a book titled ‘I Do What I Do: On Reform, Rhetoric and Resolve’.
i.The book will launch on 4th of September.
ii.According to publisher HarperCollins besides Rajan’s commentary, it will also include speeches that convey what it was like to head the central bank during his time.
iii.About the book Rajan explains economic concepts in a readily accessible way.
iv.He addresses key issues that are not in any banking manual but essential to growth: the need for tolerance and respect to assure India’s economic progress, for instance, or the connection between political freedom and prosperity.
Jay Thomas, ‘Murphy Brown’ and ‘Cheers’ Actor, Dies at 69
i.Actor Jay Thomas, best known for his roles in the classic sitcoms “Murphy Brown” and “Cheers,” has died at 69.
ii.He was battled with his cancer. Thomas is survived by his wife, Sally; and sons, Sam, Max and J.T.
Tony de Brum, champion of Paris climate agreement, dies aged 72
i.Tony de Brum, the former Marshall Islands foreign minister who became a leading advocate for the landmark Paris Agreement and an internationally recognized voice in the fight against climate change
ii.He has died aged 72 on August 22 2017 in the capital Majuro. De Brum, who was also the Pacific nation’s climate ambassador`