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Current Affairs for 3 April and 4 April 2019

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

BANKING AND ECONOMY

APPOINTMENTS

SPORTS

MISCELLANEOUS

NATIONAL NEWS

  1. The Election Commission of India (ECI) has reached out to over 150 community radio stations across the country to educate and inform the voters ahead of the general elections.
    • It is a first of its kind initiative.

 

  1. The third edition of ‘AUSINDEX-19’ (Australia India Exercise) began on April 2, 2019 with the arrival of Royal Australian Navy’s fleet at Visakhapatnam.
    • It is bilateral maritime exercise between Indian Navy and Royal Australian Navy.

 

  1. Starting May, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) plans to send up at least Eight Earth Observation (EO) satellites of varied hues.
    • HysIS was launched in November; Microsat-R in January and the EMISAT sent into orbit on April 1.
    • Cartosat-3 will have 30 cm resolution which means it can clearly ‘see’ and capture images of guns, devices, objects or human movement at that scale from space.
    • RISAT series can provide almost an uninterrupted view of earth, day or night, rain or shine for forces to detect border infiltration.

  1. The Indian Army has successfully built the longest suspension bridge of India ‘Matiri Bridge’ over the Indus River in the Leh-Ladakh region.
    • It is 260-feet long suspension bridge.
    • It is built in a record time of 40 days.

  1. As per the report State of Global Air 2019, published by Health Effects Institute (HEI), the current high level of air pollution has shortened the average lifespan of a South Asian child by two-and-a-half years while globally the reduction stands at 20 months.
    • Exposure to outdoor and indoor air pollution contributed to over 2 million deaths in India in 2017.
    • China and India together were responsible for over half of the total global attributable deaths.

 

  1. State-owned telecom service provider Bharatiya Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has received licence from the Department of Telecommunications to provide Internet and mobile services on flights.
    • BSNL and its satellite partner, Inmarsat, will offer in-flight connectivity to airlines.
    • According to the rules, passengers can make phone calls or use Internet when a flight is at a minimum height of 3,000 m in Indian airspace to avoid interference with terrestrial mobile networks.

 

  1. The United States Department of State has approved the sale of 24 MH-60R Seahaw Maritime multi-mission helicopters to India under its Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program.
    • The value of the potential is $2.6 billion.
    • Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) administers the FMS Program.
    • The proposed sale will provide India the capability to perform anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare missions, secondary missions like search and rescue, and communications relay.
    • Once inducted, the Seahawk helicopters will replace India’s ageing British-made Sea King fleet that has been in service since 1971.
    • The proposed deal also includes one MH-60B/R Excess Defense Article (EDA) helicopter from the US Navy.
    • India is the second-largest importer of arms worldwide, just behind Saudi Arabia, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute’s 2018

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  1. As per the 2019 Global Report on Food Crises report released by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) makes the following observations in the –
    • More than 113 million people across 53 countries experienced acute hunger in 2018.
    • The main drivers of food insecurity – Conflict and insecurity, Climate Shocks and Economic Turbulence.
    • Yemen remained the world’s gravest food insecurity crisis in 2018 with 53% of the population was in urgent need of assistance.

  1. South Korea will become the first country to commercially launch Fifth-Generation (5G) services on April 5 as it rolls out the latest wireless technology with Samsung Electronics’ new 5G-enabled smartphone Galaxy S10.

 

  1. WhatsApp has launched an India-focused fact-checking feature to combat fake news and rumours by reporting the forward to the WhatsApp number +91-9643-000-888.
    • The response will indicate if the information is classified as ‘true’, ‘false’, ‘misleading’, ‘disputed’ or ‘out of scope’, and include any other related information.
    • Pictures, video links or texts in Hindi, Telugu, Bengali, Malayalam and English will be reviewed by WhatsApp.

BANKING AND ECONOMY

  1. The Reserve Bank of India, in consultation with the Government of India, has decided that the limits for Ways and Means Advances (WMA) for the first half of the financial year 2019-20 (April 2019 to September 2019) will be Rs 75000 crore.
    • The temporary loan facility provided by RBI to the Centre and State govt. is known as Ways and Means Advances.
    • The WMA scheme for Central Govt. was introduced on April 1, 1997, after putting an end to the system of adhoc Treasury Bills to finance the Central Government deficit.
    • The WMA scheme was designed to meet temporary mismatches in the receipts and payments of the government.
    • The WMA is to be vacated after 90 days and is charged at repo rate.
    • The Overdraft Facility is provided when the WMA limit is breached but not beyond 10 consecutive working days.
    • The interest rate on Overdrafts would be 2% more than repo rate.

WMA for State Governments

Special WMA

Normal WMA

Provided against the collateral of the government securities held by the State Govt

After the exhaustion of the special WMA limit, normal WMA is provided which is based on a Three-Year average of actual Revenue and Capital Expenditure of the state

 

 

  1. The Supreme Court struck down a Reserve Bank of India circular dated February 12, 2018 which gave lender banks six months to resolve their stressed assets or move under the Insolvency Code against private entities who have defaulted in loans worth over ₹2000 crore.
    • As per the February 12 circular, if a borrower delays in payment for even one day, he would be treated as defaulter.
    • Insolvency resolution can be initiated under the Bankruptcy Code if a borrower fails to pay even at the end of the 180 days of first default.

 

  1. Kotak Mahindra Bank would become the first lender to levy charges on Peer-to-Peer (P2P) UPI transactions available across all platforms, namely, Paytm, Google Pay, PhonePe, Trucaller Pay among others starting May 1, 2019.
    • The first 30 peer-to-peer UPI fund transfer would be free of cost.
    • After 30 transactions, 2.50 per transaction for of Rs. 1000 or less.
    • UPI or Unified Payments Interface is an immediate real-time payment system that helps in instantly transferring the funds between the two bank accounts through a mobile platform.

 

  1. Paytm Money, the wealth management arm of Paytm, has got approval from the Securities and Exchange Board of India to start offering a stock broking service.
    • With this, users will be able to buy shares from by using Paytm Money.

 

  1. Asian Development Bank (ADB) has lowered India’s growth to 7.2% from 7.6% in fiscal year 2019-20.
    • The growth rate in FY 2020-21 is likely to be 7.3%.

  1. The Reserve Bank of India asked banks to disclose bad loan divergences in their financial statements if the additional provisioning exceeds 10% of profit before provision and contingencies.
    • Earlier, banks were to make suitable disclosures if the additional provisioning requirements assessed by RBI exceeded 15% of the published net profits after tax for the reference period.
    • Disclosures are also to be made if the additional gross NPAs identified by RBI exceed 15% of the published incremental gross NPAs for the reference period.

 

  1. Reliance Industries (RIL) through its subsidiary Reliance Jio Digital has acquired a majority stake in Mumbai based Artificial Intelligence-based conversational platform Haptik for Rs 700 crore.

APPOINTMENTS

  1. Royal Enfield appointed former Ashok Leyland CEO Vinod Dasari as its Chief Executive Officer replacing Siddhartha Lal.

 

SPORTS

  1. The 12th Asian Airgun Championships 2019 was held in Taipei, Taiwan.
    • India won 25 medals including 16 Gold, 5 Silver and 4 Bronze.
    • Shreya Agrawal won the Junior Women’s Air Rifle Gold with a world record.

Event

Winners

10m Air Rifle Men Individual

Divyansh Singh Panwar

10m Air Rifle Women Individual

Elavenil Valarivan

10m Air Pistol Women Individual

Manu Bhaker

10m Air Rifle Men Junior Individual

Yash Vardhan

10m Air Pistol Men Junior Individual

Sarabjot Singh

10m Air Rifle Women Junior Individual

Shreya Agrawal

10m Air Pistol Women Junior Individual

Esha Singh

 

  1. India retained the ICC Test Championship Mace and won the purse of USD one million for a third year running.
    • New Zealand is at the second rank.

 

  1. Saurav Ghosal became the first Indian male squash player to enter the top 10 in the latest PSA world rankings.
    • Indian women squash players — Joshna Chinappa and Dipika Pallikal — had earlier reached top-10 in the world rankings.

 

MISCELLANEOUS

  1. As per NASA, India’s A-SAT action had created 400 pieces of debris, posing a potential risk to astronauts aboard the ISS.
    • Out of these 400 pieces of debris, 60 are being tracked and 24 of them are above the highest point of the ISS.
    • As per its estimate, the risk of a collision with ISS has increased by 44% over last the 10 days.

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