We are here for you to provide the important current affairs October 25 2017 which have unique updates of all daily events from all newspapers such as The Hindu, The Economic Times, PIB, Times of India, India Today, Indian Express, Business Standard, all Government official websites. Our complete current affairs helps you to get more marks in Banking, insurance, UPSC, SSC, CLAT, Railway and all other competitive Exams.
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Centre approves mega Rs 7-lakh crore project to develop 83,000 km highways in 5 years
On October 24, 2017, Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved a mega plan to build thousands of kilometres of roads and highways across India over the next five years.
i. As per the broad contours of the plan, 83677 km of roads, highways, green-field expressways and bridges will be constructed in a phased manner.
ii. 34800 km of highways will be constructed in the first phase of this plan which will be completed by year 2022. The first phase will entail an investment of nearly 7 lakh crore……………………………..Click here to Read more
Ministries of Power & Textiles jointly launches SAATHI to help small Industries
On 24th October 2017, Ministries of Power and Textiles jointly launched SAATHI (Sustainable and Accelerated Adoption of efficient Textile technologies to Help small Industries).SAATHI:
i. Under the SAATHI initiative, Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), would provide energy efficient Powerlooms, motors and Rapier kits to the small and medium Powerloom units at no upfront cost. EESL is a public sector entity under the administrative control of Ministry of Power.
ii. The SAATHI initiative will be jointly implemented by EESL and the office of the Textile Commissioner, all over India. To initiate the implementation, cluster wise demonstration projects and workshops will be organized in main clusters such as Erode, Surat, Ichalkaranji, etc.
iii. The use of these efficient equipments would result in energy savings and cost savings to the unit owner and he would repay in installments to EESL over a period of 4 to 5 years.
About Ministry of Textiles:
♦ Minister of Textiles – Smriti Irani
♦ Minister of State for Textiles – Ajay Tamta
Madhya Pradesh govt shelves plan to shift to Jan-Dec fiscal format
Madhya Pradesh State Government has shelved off its plan to switch to January-December financial year format from 2018.
i. In May 2017, Madhya Pradesh was the first state to announce that starting from 2018, it will switch to January-December financial from the existing April-March cycle.
ii. It was also announced that current fiscal works will be completed by December 2017 and next year’s budget will be presented by end of December 2017 or in beginning of January 2017.
iii. This decision by MP state government was inspired from PM Narednra Modi’s speech at NITI Aayog’s governing council meet in April 2017, in which he mentioned that there have been suggestions to change the financial year.
iv. However, on October 24, 2017, Madhya Pradesh Finance Minister Jayant Malaiya stated that, the state government will switch to the new financial year format only after Central Government does so.
Odisha will be the ‘Focus State’ at World Food India-2017
Odisha will be the ‘Focus State’ in the World Food India (WFI)-2017, the international food event to be held at New Delhi from 3 to 5 November 2017.Odisha at World Food India-2017:
i. More than 200 global companies from 30 countries would participate in the World Food India-2017. Odisha will be the ‘Focus State’ in the event.
ii. Odisha would set up its own Pavilion with 12 stalls. It would showcase various processed food items of Odisha like spices, cashew, confectionary items, processed agro food and sea food.
iii. Odisha Sea Food Exporters’ Association along with directorate of fisheries would showcase items from sea food sector. Directorate of Horticulture and APICOL (The Agricultural Promotion & Investment Corporation of Odisha Limited) along with local industry would showcase the processed agro food items and spices.
iv. 277 entrepreneurs from Odisha would participate in the event. A Seminar on “Potential of Food Processing Sector in Odisha” will also be held on 3rdNovember 2017.
About World Food India-2017:
♦ Dates – 3 – 5 November 2017
♦ Venue – Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi
♦ Organisers – Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI), Confederation of Indian Industry (CII)
Chhat Pooja celebrations begin in Bihar
On 24th – 27th October 2017, Chhat Pooja is celebrated in Bihar, Jharkhand and eastern Uttar Pradesh.
i. Chhath Puja is one of the most ancient Hindu Vedic festivals. The festival is observed for 4 days. It is dedicated to lord Surya, the Hindu Sun god and his wife Usha.
ii. Pujas are performed to obtain their blessings and support to sustain life on earth. The main day, or Chhath, falls on October 26. It is named so, because chhath means sixth, which is the sixth day of the month of Kartika.
iii. The first day is known as Nahay Khay. Devotees take holy dip in river Ganga to cleanse themselves of sins and fasts are observed by women. On the second day, devotees observe Lohanda and Kharna and some women observe fast from sunrise to sunset.
iv. On the third day (Chhath), devotees observe fast without even drinking water. Offerings to the setting sun, known as Arghya are performed on this day. After fasting for 36 hours the fast is broken on the final day.
Other festivals celebrated in Bihar:
♦ Sama Chakeva – celebrated when the birds migrate from the Himalayas towards the plains
♦ Shravani Mela – celebrated during the month of Shravan (July-August)
♦ Sonepur Cattle Fair – Asia’s largest cattle fair which takes place in the town of Sonepur in Bihar
Madras High Court bans photos of living persons on banners
On 24th October 2017, the Madras high court banned the use of pictures of living persons on banners and hoardings in Tamil Nadu.
Photos of living persons on banners banned:
i. The Madras High Court has banned the use of photographs or pictures of living persons on banners, flex boards and signboards in Tamil Nadu.
ii. The order states that, pictures of the chief minister, ministers or politicians cannot be used in posters or hoardings. It has also banned the use of photos of people sponsoring the pictures.
iii. The Madras High Court has asked the Tamil Nadu government to make sure that provisions of the Tamil Nadu open places (prevention of disfigurement) act, 1959, were amended from time to time.
About Madras High Court:
♦ Chief Justice – Indira Banerjee
♦ Principal Seat – Chennai
♦ Circuit Bench – Madurai
Singapore passport becomes ‘most powerful’ in the world
As per ‘Global Passport Power Rank 2017’, compiled by international financial advisory firm Arton Capital, passport of Singapore is now the “most powerful” passport in the world……………………………………..Click here to Read more
|Rank||Country||Visa-Free Score (VFS)|
|3||Sweden, South Korea||157|
|4||Denmark, France, Finland, Italy, Japan, Norway, Spain, United Kingdom||156|
|5||Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, Portugal, Switzerland, Netherlands||155|
Netherlands Opens First 3D-Printed Bridge to Cyclists
On 24th October 2017, Netherlands opened the world’s first 3D-printed concrete bridge, mainly for the use of cyclists.First 3D-Printed Bridge for Cyclists:
i. There world’s first 3D-printed concrete bridge was inaugurated at the southeastern town of Gemert, Netherlands. The bridge is 26 feet long and less than 12 feet wide.
ii. The bridge is made of reinforced, pre-stressed concrete. Printing the bridge took around 3 months. It consists of nearly 800 layers.
iii. The bridge was commissioned by the province of North-Brabant and led by the company BAM Infra. The bridge’s elements were printed locally at the Eindhoven University of Technology.
iv. The bridge was tested for safety and it can bear loads up to two tonnes. Advantage of printing a bridge is that, very less concrete is needed compared to conventional technique.
♦ Capital – Amsterdam
♦ Prime Minister – Mark Rutte
2017 Melbourne Mercer Global Pension Index: India at 28th position
India has ranked 28th out of 30 countries in the Melbourne Mercer Global Pension Index 2017 published by Australian Centre for Financial Studies (ACFS).
Highlights of Melbourne Mercer Global Pension Index 2017:
i. The index reviewed pension system of 30 countries which together cover 60 percent of the world’s population.
ii. Although India has ranked 28th, its pension system has been adjudged as more sustainable than that of Poland, Germany, France, Japan, Italy, Austria, Brazil, China and Argentina.
iii. India’s overall index value in 2017 is 44.9, which marks an improvement over index value of 43.4 in 2016.
iv. India’s integrity sub-index value increased from 53.4 to 55.1. This improvement has been ascribed to Indian government’s efforts to improve transparency and member experience in various schemes.
v. Denmark has retained the top spot in this index for sixth consecutive year.
BANKING & FINANCE
Government to infuse Rs 2.11 lakh crore into PSU banks over 2 years
On October 24, 2017, Union Government announced to infuse Rs. 2.11 lakh crore capital over the next two years into public sector banks (PSBs). This announcement was made by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley post a cabinet meeting in which this recapitalisation plan was approved.
i. 18000 crore out of Rs. 2.11 lakh crore will be funded through Government’s Indradhanush Plan. In 2015 Government had announced Indradhnush Plan to infuse Rs 70,000 crore in public sector banks over four years to meet their capital requirement as per Basel –III norms.
ii. 35 lakh crore for recapitalisation will be raised through sale of recapitalisation bonds………………………….Click here to Read more
Govt. of India and Asian Development Bank Sign $300 Mn Loan to Promote Further Fiscal Reforms in West Bengal
On October 24, 2017, Asian Development Bank and the Government of India signed a $300 million loan to continue fiscal reforms in West Bengal aimed at improving the quality of public service delivery. i. Funds procured through this loan will be deployed in the second phase of West Bengal Development Finance Program which has a target to increase public investment by reducing unproductive expenditure and generate savings from efficiencies in revenue collections.
ii. The first phase of the program focused on fiscal consolidation through which West Bengal’s fiscal deficit reduced to 2.2% in FY2016 from 3.4% in FY2012.
iii. Other reforms and initiative which will be carried out under the new program includes strengthening internal audit system, improved tax monitoring, usage of information technology in tax administration and enhancements in the Integrated Financial Management System (IFMS).
Quick Facts about West Bengal:
♦ Capital – Kolkata
♦ Current Chief Minister – Mamata Banerjee
♦ Current Governor – Keshari Nath Tripathi
RBI imposes Rs 6 crore penalty on Yes Bank, Rs 2 crore on IDFC Bank
Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has imposed penalties on two private sector banks, Yes Bank and IDFC Bank for regulatory violations.
i. Monetary penalty of Rs. 6 crore has been imposed on Yes Bank for non-compliance of RBI’s guidelines on Income Recognition Asset Classification (IRAC) and delayed reporting of information security incident involving ATMs of the bank.
ii. It is to be noted that last year, data of over 32 lakh debit cards of Yes Bank used at about 80 ATMs was suspected to have been compromised due to a malware in the systems of Hitachi Payments Services, which served Yes Bank. Information pertaining to this matter was not reported by Yes Bank to RBI in the prescribed timeframe.
iii. Rs. 2 crore penalty has been imposed on IDFC Bank for violating rules relating to sanction and renewal of loans and advances.
China to get first Tesla factory outside US
Electric car maker Tesla has set up its first electric car manufacturing plant outside the US at Shangai in China. China has the world’s largest auto industry.Key facts of set up the manufacturing plant
i. China charges a tariff of 25 percent on imported cars when compared with 2.5 percent in the United States and 9.8 percent in the European Union. China also has a 17 percent VAT that is charged not only on the price of the car but also on the tariff, so that the taxes are effectively compounded.
ii. In previous year Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk had tweeted that they had interest to launch their cars in India after PM Modi’s visit to the Tesla factory in the US in 2015.
iii. Musk blamed the FDI norms in India for the delay in its entry into the Indian market and 30% of parts must be locally sourced and the supply doesn’t yet exist in India to start the plant.
iv. For Tesla and other manufacturers, their production options in China are limited by the government. One option is to set up a joint venture, sharing much of their technology and profits with a Chinese partner. The other is to manufacture in in China, protecting their secrets but forking over steep tariffs.
v. Tesla has a preliminary deal with the Shanghai municipal government that would give Tesla ownership of its facility.
♦ Tesla, Inc. is an American automaker, energy storage company and solar panel manufacturer based in Palo Alto, California.
♦ Founded In – 2003 as Tesla Motors
♦ CEO – Elon Musk
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
L&T Technology Services conferred with CII Industrial Innovation 2017
On October 24th 2017, L&T Technology Services (LTTS) has been honored with the CII Industrial Innovation Award, 2017 in New Delhi.
i. This award is referred as one of the most innovative Indian companies in the services category at the CII Industrial Innovation Awards ceremony in New Delhi.
ii. The Confederation of Indian Industry praised LTTS’ efforts to create a collaborative ecosystem comprising of global technology firms and internationally reputed institutes such as the Indian Institute of Science, IITs, Germany’s Fraunhofer and US-based Purdue University to make advances in R&D, creating best in class engineering solutions that can benefit the nation.
iii. CII also praised LTTS’ breakthrough research being conducted across 30 laboratories that seek to address the future needs of its global customers. Its innovation culture has led to the creation of 223 customer owned patents and 65 filed exclusively by LTTS engineers.
About L&T Technology Services (LTTS)
L&T Technology Services (LTTS) is a multi-national publicly-traded subsidiary of the Indian-based conglomerate Larsen & Toubro (L&T).
♦ Founded – 2009
♦ Chairman – A. M. Naik
♦ CEO & MD – Keshab Panda
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
Nepal government accepts resignation of its Ambassador to India
On 23rd October 2017, the Nepal government accepted the resignation of Deep Kumar Upadhyay, Nepal’s ambassador to India.Resignation of Nepal’s ambassador to India:
i. Deep Kumar Upadhyay, Nepal’s ambassador to India has resigned from his position to contest the upcoming parliamentary elections. He handed over his resignation to Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Krishna Bahadur Mahara on 6th October 2017.
ii. A cabinet meeting headed by Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba on 23rd October 2017 accepted the resignation of Upadhyay.
iii. Upadhyay has filed his nomination for the upcoming parliamentary election from Kapilastu district in western Nepal as the ruling Nepali Congress candidate.
♦ Capital – Kathmandu
♦ Currency – Nepalese rupee
♦ Prime Minister – Sher Bahadur Deuba
♦ President – Bidhya Devi Bhandari
Alok Kumar Pateria appointed as ADG of CISF
Alok Kumar Pateria has been appointed as the Additional Director General (ADG) of Central Industrial Security Force (CISF).
Alok Kumar Pateria – ADG of CISF:
i. The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the appointment of Alok Kumar Pateria, IPS (Indian Police Service) Officer (MP:86) as Additional Director General (ADG) of Central Industrial Security Force (CISF).
ii. His appointment has been made on deputation basis for a period up to 31.05.2020. This is the date of his superannuation from the date of assumption of charge of the post or until further orders, whichever is earlier.
About Central Industrial Security Force (CISF):
♦ Motto – Protection and Security
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi
♦ Director General – O.P Singh
ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS
Cisco buys US software company BroadSoft for $1.9 billion
American technology conglomerate, Cisco Systems has finalised a deal to acquire American communication software and service provider BroadSoft for $1.9 billion.
More Information about CISCO’s acquisition of BroadSoft:
i. The acquisition deal will be completed during the first quarter of 2018. CISCO will pay $55 per share in cash.
ii. This deal will enable CISCO to migrate away from its stagnating switches and routers business and will help to foray in selling unified communications software to big telecommunications firms.
iii. Post the acquisition, employees of BroadSoft will be absorbed into Cisco’s Unified Communications Technology Group.
Quick Facts about Cisco Systems:
♦ Founded in – 1984
♦ Headquarters – California, United States
♦ Current CEO – Chuck Robbins
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu launches CIPAM’s Website
On 24th October 2017, Minister for Commerce and Industry, Suresh Prabhu launched the official website for the Cell for IPR Promotion and Management (CIPAM) of the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP).
L aunch of CIPAM website:
i.CIPAM has been set up under the support of DIPP to implement the National Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Policy. Secretary of DIPP, Ramesh Abhishek was also present during the launch.
ii. The CIPAM website is interactive and provides regular updates on all upcoming events including awareness programs conducted on Intellectual Property Rights.
iii. It would make resource material on IPRs available for various levels: schools, universities, industry and enforcement agencies. Also, educational blogs by CIPAM and IPR experts would be available.
About Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP):
♦ Objective – formulation and implementation of promotional and developmental measures for growth of the industrial sector
♦ Chairman – Ramesh Abhishek
World’s oldest astrolabe that guided ships to India found
A navigation tool recovered from a ship of Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama, that guided ships to India in the 16th century, has been confirmed as the world’s oldest astrolabe (maritime navigation tool).World’s oldest astrolabe:
i. The object was recovered by Blue Water Recovery, from the wreck of the ship Esmeralda, that sank in the Indian Ocean in 1503. Work was done at Bhattacharyya’s Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG) on the object.
ii. It showed that, it was an astrolabe from the 15th century, used by mariners to measure the altitude of the sun while at sea. It is the world’s oldest astrolabe.
iii. The astrolabe is a bronze disc of 17.5 cm in diameter. It is engraved with the Portuguese coat of arms and the personal emblem of Don Manuel I, the King of Portugal during 1495-1521. The astrolabe is currently with Oman’s national museum.
About Vasco da Gama:
♦ Occupation – Portuguese explorer
♦ Highlight – first European to reach India by sea
First 3D printed wearable ‘battery’ developed by Brunel University researchers
Researchers from Brunel University in the UK have developed the first 3D printed wearable ‘battery’.
First 3D printed wearable ‘battery’:
i. The 3D printing method of the wearable ‘battery’ stacks silicone, glue and gel electrolyte, layer by layer to make a supercapacitor. The supercapacitor stores energy on its surface without chemical reactions.
ii. The wristbands could be used in the future to power smartphones, electric cars, medical implants like pacemakers etc. They have also passed stress tests without losing power.
iii. The research was published in the journal Materials Science and Engineering. It shows that, the power wristband can be made using cheap products from a household shop instead of sophisticated expensive metals or semiconductors.
About Brunel University:
♦ Location – Uxbridge, London, England
♦ Chancellor – Sir Richard Sykes
Supreme Court Fined Rs. 2 Lakh Fine On Environment Ministry
On October 24th 2017,The Supreme Court has fined of Rs 2 lakh on the Union Environment Ministry for not fixing the pollution emission standards of Sulphur Dioxide and Nitrogen Oxide for 34 categories of industries as per May 2 order and also SC banned of using pet coke and furnace oil in Delhi and the NCR to control the air pollution.Standards should be fixed on or before June 30
i. The bench of Justice Madan B Lokur and Justice Deepak Gupta noted that in its May 2 order had directed the ministry and Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to fix sulphur oxides and nitrogen oxides standards for these industries and had said that standards should be fixed on or before June 30 in view of the provisions of the Environment Protection Act, 1986.
ii. The bench observed that four months have passed since the order was passed, but still the emission standards have not been finalised by the ministry.
iii. The CPCB in its confirmation to the court said the emission norms for SO2 and NOx for nine categories of industries had already been notified.
iv. These industries include thermal power plants (in 2015), Dye and Dye Intermediate (2010), Cement (2016), Copper, Lead or Zinc Smelter (2011), Iron and Steel (2012), Coke oven (covered under Iron and Steel sector) (2012), Sulphuric Acid (2008), Petrochemicals (2012) and Pesticides (2011).
Central Pollution Control Board Eases Norms for Sewage Treatment Plants
Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has eased standards for sewage treatment plants (STP) coming up after June 2019.
i. As per 2015 proposal of Government, biochemical oxygen demand (BoD) in water treated by upcoming STPs should not be more than 10 mg/litre. BoD is a marker for organic pollutants in the water.
ii. This requirement has been eased and now upcoming STPs will have to conform only to 30 mg/litre of BoD (permitted by the current law).
iii .This norm will apply to all proposed STPs to treat sewage along the polluted stretches of River Ganga in Haridwar, Kanpur and Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh.
iv. However for STPs in State capitals, BoD has to be capped at 20 mg/litre.
v. The stricter norm of 10 mg/litre has been eased citing the reason that it is impractical and requires advanced technology which most of the States cannot afford.
Thumri Queen, Padma Vibhushan awardee Girija Devi passes away at 88
On 24th October 2017, famous classical singer and Padma Vibhushan awardee Girija Devi died of cardiac arrest, at BM Birla Heart Research Centre, in Kolkata.Death of Girija Devi:
i. Girija Devi was 88 years old. She was admitted to BM Birla Heart Research Centre in Kolkata with cardiovascular ailments.
ii.She died at 8.45 pm on 24th October 2017 due to cardiac arrest. She is survived by a daughter.
iii .Girija Devi was a legendary singer of the Benaras gharana. She was considered as the queen of Thumri and fondly called Appa ji. Thumri is a form of semi-classical Indian music.
iv. She had received Padma Shri award in 1972, Padma Bhushan in 1989 and the Padma Vibhushan in 2016. She was born in a village near Varanasi on 8th May, 1929.
About Girija Devi:
♦ Occupation – Indian classical singer
♦ Awards – Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan, Padma Vibhushan, Sangeet Natak Akademi Award etc.
Cross-Country Woman Biker Sana Iqbal Dies in Car Crash
On 24th October 2017, cross-country woman bike rider Sana Iqbal died in a car accident in Hyderabad.
Death of Sana Iqbal:
i. Sana Iqbal met with a car accident while driving with her husband Abdul Nadeem in Hyderabad. She had severe head injuries and was declared dead while undergoing treatment at a nearby private hospital.
ii. She fought against suicide and depression by spreading awareness through her bike rides. In November 2015, she took a solo bike ride from Goa through the length and breadth of India. She covered 38,000 km by bike during her solo mission.
iii. She was pursuing a Masters in Psychology and was also counselling people with depression. Sana also delivered talks on depression at various colleges.
About Sana Iqbal:
♦ Age – 30
♦ Activities – Indian cross-country biker, Counselor
BOOKS & AUTHORS
Rajasthan CM launches Rajiv Mehrishi’s ‘India 2017 Yearbook’
On 23rd October 2017, Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje launched an e-book titled ‘India 2017 Yearbook’.
India 2017 Yearbook:
i. ‘India 2017 Yearbook’ was compiled by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) and former Union home secretary Rajiv Mehrishi.
ii. Rajiv Mehrishi said that, the e-book includes lot of information on important dignitaries, state policy, public schemes and important data about demographics, trade, economy and many other topics.
iii. He said that, additional articles were contributed by a leading group of intellectuals, academics and civil servants.
About Rajiv Mehrishi:
♦ Current position – Comptroller and Auditor General of India (C&AG) and Chairman of United Nations Board of Auditors
♦ Previous Position – IAS officer
First International Day of Diplomats celebrated in Brasilia
On 24th October 2017, the first International Day of Diplomats was celebrated in Brasilia.First International Day of Diplomats:
i. Diplomats of Bangladesh, Brazil, France, Ghana, India, Israel, Italy, Mexico, South Africa and Turkey participated in the First International Day of Diplomats celebration in Brasilia.
ii. The idea of celebrating International Day of Diplomats is to recognise the hard work and sacrifices of diplomats and their families. This idea has gained wide support from the international community, including diplomats of various countries.
iii. Abhay K an Indian poet and diplomat coordinated the event in Brasilia. Rodrigo Alexandre de Carvalho, the head of the Central Asia Division of the Brazilian Foreign Ministry and diplomats from various countries spoke on the occasion.
♦ Federal capital of Brazil
♦ 4th most populous city of Brazil