October 25, 2018

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NATIONAL NEWS

 

  1. The Prime Minister launched the “Main Nahin Hum” Portal and app.
    • The portal which works on the theme “Self4Society” will enable IT professionals and organizations to bring together their efforts towards social causes, and service to society, on one platform.
  1. Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has signed a $777 mn deal with Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) to supply additional Barak-8 Long Range Surface to Air Missile (LRSAM) systems for seven warships of the Indian Navy.
    • The LRSAM can intercept aerial targets up to a range of 80 km. It is being co-developed by the DRDO in India and IAI, and will be manufactured by Bharat Dynamics Limited.
  1. The Supreme Court banned the sale and registration of motor vehicles conforming to the emission standard Bharat Stage-IV in the entire country from April 1, 2020.
    • India will upgrade to BS-VI from BS-IV emission standard coming April 2020.
    • The last date for the registration of BS-IV-complaint vehicles is 31 March 2020.
    • Bharat Stage VI is the most advanced emission standard for automobiles and is equivalent to Euro-VI norms currently in place across countries in Europe.
    • The Union government decided in 2017 to leapfrog directly from BS-IV norms for petrol and diesel vehicles to BS-VI emission standards to reduce vehicular pollution.
    • With the introduction of the new norms, On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) become mandatory for all vehicles.
    • The OBD unit will be able to identify likely areas of malfunction by means of default codes stored on a computer, thus ensuring that the sophisticated emission control device, which is fitted in a BS-VI vehicle, runs at optimum efficiency throughout the life of the vehicle.
    • For two-wheelers, manufacturers have to introduce a fuel injection system, which will be a first in India.

 

  1. Two bodies—an Adjudicating Authority and an Appellate Tribunal have been created to resolve cases related to Benami Transactions
    • The approval is expected to lead to effective and better administration of cases referred to the Adjudicating Authority and speedy disposal of appeals filed against the order of the authority before the Appellate Tribunal.
    • A benami transaction is one where a property is held in one person’s name, but the funds for acquisition have been provided by another person, for whose benefit the property is held. Therefore, the property is not held in the name of the real owner, but in somebody else’s name.
    • Benami transactions are usually undertaken by people who want to park their unaccounted cash in real estate, in order to dodge tax authorities.

 

 

  1. A High-Level Steering Committee will be set up to periodically review and refine the National Indicator Framework (NIF) for monitoring how India is implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
    • There are 17 goals like economic, social and environmental dimensions of development, eradicate poverty and promote prosperity, with 169 targets.
    • The committee will be chaired by the Chief Statistician of India and Secretary, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI).
  1. The Rate of Interest for Sukanya Samriddhi Yojana has been hiked to 8.5%, compounded yearly from October 2018.
    • Only the Senior Citizen’s Saving Scheme offers a higher interest rate at present, at 8.7%.
    • SSY, launched in January 2015 as part of the government’s larger ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’ campaign, is aimed at encouraging and incentivizing Indian parents to educate and nurture their daughters.

 

  1. Ramganga River — Tributary of Ganga, Uttarakhand
    • Originates from Namik Glacier in Pithoragarh district of Uttarakhand

 

 

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

 

  1. The European Union Parliament has voted to Ban single use Plastic
    • Items such as plastic straws, cotton swabs, disposable plastic plates and cutlery would be banned by 2021, and 90% of plastic bottle recycled by 2025.

 

BANKING AND ECONOMY

 

  1. Bank of Baroda (BoB), Dena Bank and Vijaya Bank have decided to set up Internal Committees, which will help integrate their functions before the merger happens.
    • The committees will comprise the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) and Executive Directors of the three banks.

 

  1. The Reserve Bank may make relaxations in the Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) framework that put restrictions on financially weak banks.
    • As many as 11 out of 21 banks are under the RBI’s watchlist.
    • The 11 banks on the RBI’s watch-list include Allahabad Bank, United Bank of India, Corporation Bank, IDBI Bank, UCO Bank, Bank of India, Central Bank of India, Indian Overseas Bank, Oriental Bank of Commerce, Dena Bank, Bank of Maharashtra.
    • Of these, Dena Bank and Allahabad Bank are facing restrictions on expansion of business.

 

  1. Momentum Investing — This refers to an investment strategy which advocates picking stocks, bonds, or any other financial security based on their past price performance.
    • This is in complete contrast to value investing, a popular investment strategy in which fund managers prefer to buy securities that have recently fallen in price and are thus considered to be trading at a bargain compared to their underlying value.

 

APPOINTMENTS

 

  1. M Nageshwar Rao has been appointed as the Interim Director of CBI as Alok Verma is on leave.
  2. Paytm Payments Bank, a unit of One97 Communications Ltd., had appointed Satish Kumar Gupta as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the digital bank.

 

AWARDS

 

  1. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been conferred with the Seoul Peace Prize for 2018 for his contribution to international cooperation and fostering global economic growth.
    • The Seoul Peace Prize was established in 1990 to commemorate the success of the 24th Olympic Games held in Seoul.
    • The award committee recognized his contribution to the growth of Indian and global economies, crediting ‘Modinomics’ for reducing the social and economic disparity between the rich and the poor.

 

 

SPORTS

 

  1. India captain Virat Kohli has become the fastest batsman to score 10,000 runs in the history of ODI cricket, achieving the feat in his 205th innings, against Windies.
    • The 29-year-old overtook Sachin Tendulkar, who had reached 10,000 ODI runs in his 259th innings, against Australia in 2001.

 

MISCELLANEOUS

 

  1. MIT scientists have developed a method to mass produce robots no bigger than a cell called as Syncell, short for Synthetic Cells.
    • These could be used to monitor conditions inside an oil or gas pipeline, or to search out disease while floating through the bloodstream.
    • The process, called “autoperforation”, directs the fracture lines so that they produce miniscule pockets of a predictable size and shape.
    • Embedded inside these pockets are electronic circuits and materials that can collect data.