Current Affairs for July 2, 2019

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

BANKING AND ECONOMY

APPOINTMENTS

IMPORTANT DAYS

SPORTS

MISCELLANEOUS

CURRENT AFFAIRS VIDEO

NATIONAL NEWS

  1. Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution has set the deadline for implementation of ‘One Nation One (Ration) Card’ scheme i.e., 1 July, 2020.
  • Under the scheme, subsidized food grains will be provided to beneficiaries from any ration shop in the country through Point of Sale (PoS) mechanism.
  • 77% ration shops have PoS machines and more than 85% people covered under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) use their aadhaar cards to avail the benefit.

National Food Security Act

Launched

2013

Ministry

Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution

Purpose

To provide food grains at highly subsidized rates to over 82 crore people on monthly basis

 

  1. India and Russia signed a deal of Rs 200 crore for acquiring the ‘Strum Ataka’ anti-tank missiles under the emergency clause (under which delivery will be made in 3 months).
  • It will increase the capacity of Mi-35 attack choppers, which will soon replace with USA’s Apache gunships.

 

  1. Tamil Nadu has declared Tamil Yeoman/Maravan as its state butterfly.

Other states with their state butterflies

Names

Maharashtra (first state that declared its state butterfly)

Blue Mormon

Uttarakhand

Common peacock

Karnataka

Southern bird wings

Kerala

Malabar banded peacock

Tamil Nadu

Tamil Yeoman/Maravan

 

  1. Uttar Pradesh launched 2nd phase of ‘Communicable Disease Control and Dastak Abhiyan 2019’ to eliminate Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) and Japanese Encephalitis (JE) disease from the state.
  • It was launched in association with UNICEF in 2018, to aware people and provide door-to-door services to the affected people.
  • In coordination with WHO, UNICEF, PATH and public participation the campaign has reduced the disease burden by 35% and deaths by 65%.

 

  1. A high-powered committee, headed by Devendra Fadnavis, has been formed by PM Modi to transform agriculture and to raise farmers’ income.
  • It will suggest measures to raise growth in food processing, boost agricultural export and attract investments.
  1. University Grants Commission (UGC) launched STRIDE (Scheme for Trans-disciplinary Research for India’s Developing Economy) scheme to boost research and innovation.
  • Bhushan Patwardhan committee (headed by Bhushan Patwardhan) has been set up by UGC to examine entire scheme.

Three components of scheme (grant to universities/colleges)

Fund

Identifying talented research students from all disciplines

Rs 1 crore

Promote collaboration between universities, government, industries etc.

Rs 50 Lakh- Rs 1 crore

Encourage High impact research projects in humanities and Social Sciences

Rs 1 crore (for one Higher Educational Institute)

Rs 5 crore (for multi-institution network)

 

  1. Indian Air Force and French Air Force began the sixth edition of their bilateral air exercise- “Garuda (VI)”, at Mont de Marsan in France.

 

  1. Ministry of Home Affairs has declared the entire State of Nagaland a ‘disturbed area’ under Section 3 of AFSPA for a period of 6 more months w.e.f. from June 30.
  • Section 3 of AFSP allows armed forces to use coercion/force (whenever required) to maintain the civil order in the state or area.
  • AFSPA- Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act 1958.

 

  1. Ministry of Jal Shakti launched “Jal Shakti Abhiyan” to conserve water in 1592 stressed blocks of 256 districts.

 

  1. Nagaland started its own “Register of Indigenous Inhabitants of Nagaland” (similar to National Register of Citizens) to restrict the issue of fake indigenous inhabitant certificates.
  • The exercise will be completed within 60 days and provisional lists will be published on September 11.

 

  1. Freedom fighter Heera Singh won his pension claims after 40 years under the Swatantrata Sainik Samman Pension Scheme 1980 (SSSPS).
  • SSSPS grants pension to freedom fighters.

 

  1. Delhi Commission for Women has set up a ‘transgender cell’ for redressal of complaints of violence and harassment against members of the transgender community.

 

  1. Vector-borne disease (dengue, malaria and chikungunya) cases are expected to increase in this monsoon season in Delhi.

14. A petition for establishment of a Public Service Commission (PSC) for Delhi has been filed in Delhi High Court after Delhi government failed to comply with Article 315 and 239AA.

  • Article 315 states that there shall be a separate PSC for the UTs and each State.
  • Article 239 AA states that the Assembly has the power to make laws for the whole or any part of the National Capital Territory with respect to any matters in the State List or in the Concurrent List if any such matter is applicable to UTs.

 

  1. Ministry of Agriculture’s Locust Warning Organisation (LWO), based in Jodhpur, is controlling the destruction caused by locusts outbreak to crops in Rajasthan’s Barmer district.

 

  1. Gorewada lake in Nagpur (Maharashtra) has dried up for the first time in 100 years.
  • Totladoh and Navegaon Khairi dams are in Nagpur.

 

  1. Maharashtra is planning to launch an app to trace the carbon emission of citizens (including the citizen’s use of electricity, AC etc.) to reduce pollution levels.
  • India has set target to generate 175 GW (gigawatt) of renewable energy by 2022, of which 100 GW will be solar.
  • India aims to reduce the green-house gas emission by 20% to 25% , as part of the Paris Summit.

 

  1. Mekedatu balancing reservoir and drinking water project is the proposed project of Karnataka to be built inside the Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary
  1. Kerala’s Excise Department is forming a “Vimukthi Sena” of young volunteers (between 18-40 years) under the ‘Vimukthi’ initiative.
  • Vimukthi, launched in 2016, is Kerala’s State Mission for De-addiction: raising awareness about alcoholism, drugs and narcotics.

 

  1. Medical Council of India (MCI) has proposed to increase the medical seats by 25% for states that adopt the 10% Economically Weaker Section (EWS) quota.
  • Tamil Nadu has implemented the 10% EWS quota although the existing 69% quota (50% for backward classes and 19% for SCs) will be continued in the state.

 

  1. Ministry of Science and Technology has released a draft of Biological Data Storage, Access and Sharing Policy of India”.
  • It mandates all the researchers (who collect biological data and use government funds for their research) will have to make their research public within two years.

 

  1. Lok Sabha passed the Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers’ Cadre) Bill, 2019 which allows 10% EWS reservation in jobs in central institutions.
  • It also upheld the statutory reservations in hiring of professors by considering an university as a single unit, instead of a department.

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  1. PM Narendra Modi held multilateral talks on side lines of 14th G20 summit held in Osaka, Japan.
  • JAI Talks- Japan-America-India (JAI).
  • RIC Talks- Russia-India-China (RIC).
  • BRICS Talks- On BRICS Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA), a mechanism to prevent pressures of short-term balance of payment on member countries.
  • PM Modi invited the G20 nations to join the ‘International Coalition on Disaster Resilient Infrastructure’ (currently 33 member countries).
  • India and Indonesia set to increase their bilateral trade to $50 billion by 2025.
  • The trade between them was $18.13 billion in 2017 (with $14.08 billion imports from Indonesia and its exports to Indonesia were at $4.05 billion, according to Indonesia’s Central Statistics Agency).
  1. First joint security exercise of International Security Alliance (ISA) named as “ISALEX19” was held in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

 

  1. China tested its, JL-3 -a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM)- which has a range of 14,000 kms.
  • A submarine-launched ballistic missile is a missile which can be launched from submarines.

 

  1. Japan re-started its commercial whaling activity after a period of 31 years within country’s exclusive economic waters.
  • Commercial whaling in Japan was prohibited by International Whaling Commission (IWC) in 1986.
  • But recently, Japan withdrew from the IWC to start whaling again.

 

  1. Donald Trump has become the 1st incumbent US president to enter North Korea to meet Kim Jong Un in the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) between North Korea and South Korea.
  • He held a trilateral meet there with Kim Jong Un and Moon Jae In (South Korea’s President).

 

  1. International Civil Aviation Organization, for the first time, held a meeting to review methods of pilot training in Montreal, following two Boeing 737 Max crashes in 2018.

 

  1. According to World Travel and Tourism Council, airlines expects a passenger growth from 6 billion this year to 8.2 billion in 2037.
  • It is also planning to implement face/biometric mode of detection at the airports, replacing the existing security checks.

 

  1. China has issued ‘Hong-Kong Extradition Bill’ which mandates criminal suspects of Hong Kong to be sent to China for trial.

 

  1. US’s supreme court will decide whether to uphold or reject DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival)- US immigration policy.
  • US will not allow undocumented Immigrants brought as Young children in US to stay further, if DACA is implemented.

BANKING AND ECONOMY

  1. Annual banking statistics report by Swiss National Bank (SNB) shows India at 74th place (1 position drop from earlier) in terms of money deposited in the bank by the end of 2018.
  • Facts of the Report: –

India’s money with Swiss bank

Rs.6,757 crore (955 million CHF; 6% fall from 2017)

Total Money of foreign clients in 2018

Rs 99 Lakh crore or CHF 1.4 trillion (4% decline)

Top Country with highest deposit

United Kingdom (with CHF 372 billion)

India’s rank among BRICS (in this report)

Russia at the top (20th position overall)

India is Lowest at 74th

 

  1. 2nd GST day was observed on July 1, on which following reforms to GST were announced:-
  • Sahaj and Sugam returns for small taxpayers are proposed by the Finance ministry on trial basis for three months.
  • Cash Ledger will have only 5 major heads instead of 20 heads earlier. There is only one Cash Ledger for Tax, interest, penalty, fee & others.
  • Single Refund Disbursing: The Central or State Government which sanctions refund disburses all four major heads of refunds namely CGST, SGST, IGST, and Cess.
  • Composition Scheme for small service providers up to annual turnover of Rs 50 lacs with a tax rate of 6% was also announced.

 

  1. Maharashtra has presented total supplementary budget at ₹2,05,475 crore in its five-year term (which is 12.95% of total budget- the highest ever) in the state assembly.
  • A supplementary demand is an additional grant to meet government expenditure, outside the annual budget.
  • It also passed an amendment bill to “Municipal Corporation Act” to allow exemption in property tax to units up to 500 sq. ft. in size.
  • Maratha reservation quota has been reduced from 16% to 12% (in education) and 13% (in jobs).

 

  1. Coffee production in India between Sept 2018 to Oct 19 was 319,500 Million Tonnes (MT), according to Coffee Board of India.
  • According to United Planters’ Association of Southern India and Karnataka Planters’ Association, coffee production in the current crop year is lower than 3,00,000 tonnes. [they will release their report by September]

 

  1. NITI Aayog proposed to establish giga factories in India to indigenously manufacture lithium-ion batteries (essential component of electric vehicles) in the next couple of years.

 

  1. According to World Bank’s study, Indian stock market’s turnover ratio had fallen 60% from 143 in 2008 to 58 in 2018 (the highest among other markets).
  • The turnover ratio is the total value of the shares traded in a specific period divided by the average market capitalisation of that period.
  • Reason behind the fall: – High Trading Cost in the market.

Other Countries

% fall in turnover ratio

China

Less than 6% dip

Brazil

12.85%

Korea

31.12%

 

  1. India has ratified (implemented) the Multilateral Convention to Implement Tax Treaty Related “Measures to Prevent Base Erosion and Profit Shifting” (BEPS) from October 2019.
  • Purpose: – To stop companies from shifting their profits into other countries (which offer lower tax rates).
  • The treaty was signed in Paris in 2017.
  • The MLI will be applied alongside existing tax treaties and will be modified to implement the BEPS measures to curb revenue loss of India.

 

  1. Reliance Industries and its British partner BP won a Krishna-Godavari basin gas block in the auction under Open Acreage Licensing Policy (OALP).
  • Oil India Ltd. won 12 while Vedanta Ltd. won 10 and ONGC 8 blocks out of 32 auctioned.

 

  1. Care Ratings and Brickworks have downgraded Cox and kings’ (travel company) ratings for various instruments following the company’s failure to pay its debts.

CARE Ratings

New Ratings

Old Ratings

Commercial Paper (Rs 375 crore)

‘D’

A+

Commercial Paper (Rs 1,685 cr.)

‘A4’

A+

Non-convertible debentures

‘BB’

‘AA-‘

 

Brickworks Ratings

New Ratings

Old Ratings

Commercial Paper (Rs 375 crore)

‘D’

A+

Commercial Paper (Rs 1,685 cr.)

‘D’

A+

Non-convertible debentures

‘C’

AA-

 

  1. IndInfravit (an InvIT) is acquiring nine road assets from Sadhav Infrastructure Project Ltd. for Rs 6,610 crore.

 

  1. 176th Meeting of the Conference of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) was held in Vienna, Austria where the group decided to extend the supply cut to 9 months till 31 March 2020.
  • OPEC’s share in 2019 was 14 million barrels a day (mb/d) while non-OPEC countries’ oil supply raised to 2.14 mb/d, year-on-year.
  • Secretary-General Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo’s term has also been renewed for three years.

 

  1. 6th OPEC and non-OPEC Ministerial Meeting was held in Vienna, Austria in line with the ‘Declaration of Cooperation’ signed between them in 2016.
  • The non-OPEC countries have also decided to extend the supply cut for nine months.
  • Charter of Cooperation, between these countries, has been drafted in the meeting.

 

  1. Liberty Steel has acquired 7 steel making units and 5 service centres from ArcelorMittal for euro 740 million (around Rs 5,782 crores).

 

  1. Bidvest Group will sell its 5% stake in Mumbai International Airport Ltd. to GVK Group (which currently hold 50.5% stake in the airport).

 

  1. Mahanagar Gas Ltd (MGL), Gujarat Gas Ltd (GGL), and Indraprastha Gas Ltd (IGL)- CNG and PNG (piped natural gas) discoms’ exclusive rights may end soon in Mumbai, Gujarat and Delhi.
  • Reason: – As the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) is looking out for new entrants who would pay for using their network and infrastructure for supplying CNG and PNG.
  1. State Bank of India will raise up to Rs 7,000 crore addition tier-I (ATI) capital through bonds in FY20.
  • It’s ATI ratio is 1.03% (rose from 0.97% in Dec 2018).

 

  1. Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has issued the guidelines for compounding of offences under direct tax laws.
  • Under it, the offenders indulging in serious tax crimes cannot escape punishment by paying the penalty. Now they will be prosecuted in court.
  • Earlier, taxpayers were able to settle cases of tax evasion by paying the tax demand, penalty and interest.
  • Exception is given to 13 cases listed by CBDT. Offences under Sections 275A, 275B and 276 of the Income Tax Act will not be compounded (exempted).

APPOINTMENTS

  1. MTNL’s Chairman and Managing Director, P.K. Purwar has been given an additional post as CMD of BSNL for three months till a new CMD is appointed.

 

  1. Christine Lagarde has been appointed as the CEO of European Central Bank.
  • She is currently the CEO of International Monetary Fund.

  1. Rahul Dravid has been appointed as the “Head” of the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru.

IMPORTANT DAYS

  1. National Doctors’ Day was observed on July 1 throughout India.
  • Theme: – “Zero tolerance to violence against doctors and clinical establishment”
  • It marks the birth and death anniversary of famous physician Bidhan Chandra Roy (1st CM of West Bengal).

SPORTS

  1. Veer Chotrani won the 2019 Asian junior Individual squash championship in the U-19 category held at Macau.
  • He is the third junior from India to win this championship after Ravi Dixit and Vela Senthilkumar.
  • Female U-15 Winner: – Yuvna Gupta (silver medal).

 

  1. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen won the 2019 Austrian Grand Prix.

 

  1. Boxer Vaibhav Yadav became the Asia silver Welterweight Champion (of World Boxing Council) held in Pattaya, Thailand.
  • The fight was conducted by Asian Boxing Council (ABC) and approved by World Boxing Council (WBC).

 

  1. Ivo Karlovic has become the oldest tennis player (40 years) to play in men’s singles after Australian Ken Rosewall in 1975. Currently, he is playing Wimbledon 2019.
  • The Championships, Wimbledon is the oldest and most prestigious tennis tournament in the world held in Wimbledon, London.

 

  1. India will compete with Pakistan in qualification round for Davis Cup (organized by International Tennis Federation) in Islamabad, Pakistan in September.
  • It will be the first time India will be playing a tie in Pakistan in 55 years.
  • Davis Cup 2019 will be held in Madrid, Spain.

 

  1. Major League Baseball (the only leading body of baseball across the globe) will organize Million Dollar Arm and MLB First Pitch programs in India to popularise Baseball in India.

7. 148th Open Championship at Royal Portrush Golf Club will be held in Northern Ireland.

 

  1. Commonwealth chess championship 2019 is being held in Delhi, India.

 

  1. Pakistan won the IBSF Snooker World Team Cup 2019 held in Doha, Qatar.

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MISCELLANEOUS

  1. Malayalam film director Babu Narayanan passed away.

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