18th May 2017 – Current Affairs Today


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National Current Affairs

Recent Approvals by Central government – May 17 2017

  • Proposal to establish Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) – Assam with 100% outlay of central government.
  • Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Australia on Cooperation in Combating International Terrorism and Transnational Organized Crime
  • Agreement between India and Tajikistan on Cooperation and Mutual Assistance in Customs Matters
  • Faculty Exchange Agreement between National Defence College, New Delhi and National Defence College, Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • Amendment of the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1958
  • Pan-India implementation of Maternity Benefit Program

AP amends Act to appoint PV Sindhu as Group-1 officer

  • Andhra Pradesh Legislature on 16th of May has passed a Bill to appoint Olympics winner shuttler PV Sindhu as a Group-1 officer in the government by amending the state public services Act.
  • The Andhra Pradesh Cabinet had passed a resolution on August 22, 2016 and offers a Group-1 (gazetted officer) post to Sindhu.
  • The government also gave a cash reward of Rs 3 crore and a residential plot to Sindhu in Amaravati.

Country’s first ornamental fish park to come up at Chennai

  • The park will include an ultra-modern facility for ornamental fish equipped with multi-species hatchery and live feed culture units.
  • Tamil Nadu is the second largest exporter of ornamental fish after West Bengal.
  • The facility is being developed by Fisheries College and Research Institute, Ponneri in Tamil Nadu.
  • It will fulfil a major requirement of the industry for mass production of high value aquarium fish.
  • Centre has recently launched a pilot project on ornamental fisheries under the National Fisheries Development Board.

EPFO’s Citizens’ Charter 2017 & e-court management system launched

  • Citizens’ Charter 2017 is aim to bring transparency and accountability on the part of EPFO
  • Its vision is of social security coverage to all employees as well as implementation of policies for benefit of all stakeholders.
  • It will make service delivery system and grievance redressal mechanism more efficient and effective.
  • All the parties can now file all their paper, evidence, documents online and all the details along with status can be accessed online. It is a step towards paperless court system

International Current Affairs

Mukesh Ambani tops Forbes list of Global Game Changers

  • The top 3 spots in the list have been occupied by: Mukesh Ambani of India (1st), Ziv
    AviramAmnon Shashua of Israel (2nd), Stewart Butterfield of United States (3rd).
  • The oldest person to feature on the list is Christo Wiese, 75, who is credited for creating Africa’s largest retail empire.

 Arunachal mountaineer Anshu Jamsenpa scales Mount Everest for fourth time

  • Anshu Jamsenpa from Arunachal Pradesh scaled the world’s highest peak, Mount Everest for the fourth time.
  • She had scaled Mount Everest twice in May 2011 and again on May 18, 2013.

Business and Economy

India’s GDP Growth Forecast for 2017 Revised Downward by UN

  • As per United Nations’ “World Economic Situation and Prospects as of mid- 2017” report, India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth forecast for FY 2017 has been revised downwards to 7.3% as compared to 7.7% projection
  • GDP growth forecast for FY 2018 has been revised upwards to 9% as compared to 7.6% projection made in January 2017.
  • The report mentioned that stressed balance sheets in Indian banking sector, will restrict the restoration of investment cycle in the country.

Kotak Mahindra Bank enables blockchain based trade financing operation

  • Kotak Mahindra Bank enabled end to end trade financing for one of its clients by applying the blockchain technology.
  • By utilising the blockchain technology, time for processing the letter of credit (LC) reduced from 20-30 days to few hours.
  • LC is a written commitment to pay by buyer’s/importer’s bank to seller’s/exporter’s bank. The LC guarantees payment when prescribed list of documents are provided by the seller/exporter within the stipulated timeframe. 

People in News

 Dish TV India appoints Anil Dua as Group CEO

  • Direct-to-home operator Dish TV India has appointed Anil Dua as group Chief Executive Officer
  • He is an alumnus of IIT-Delhi and IIM-Ahmedabad, has worked in several companies including Unilever, Gillette and Hero MotoCorp.

Science & Technology

24×7 DD channel for Jharkhand

  • Jharkhand has been given the most film-friendly award by the National Film Awards.
  • A around-the-clock Doordarshan channel for Jharkhand has been announced.

IIEST creates India’s first smart grid project

  • IIEST has created the country’s first smart grid project that will generate power from renewable sources of energy.
  • The smart grid will help in generating power from solar, wind and vegetable waste resources, and it will depend on the weather conditions and availability of waste products.
  • It is the first smart grid project in the country.

Operation Clean Portal launched

  • Its aim is to tab dishonest citizens hiding their income to the authorities and Government.
  • There have been 18 lakh people who have been identified by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) after demonetisation with respect to irregularities in tax payment and income band.
  • The features of the Operation Clean Money Portal are as follows:
  • Providing comprehensive information at one place
  • Creating a tax compliant society and Enabling Transparent Tax Administration by sharing status reports.

Indian Teen from Tamil Nadu develops the world’s smallest satellite for NASA

  • A 18-year-old boy from Tamil Nadu has created the world’s smallest satellite named ‘KalamSat’.
  • It is developed by Riftah Sharook.
  • KalamSat weighs only 64 grams and is named after former President APJ Abdul Kalam.
  • The main role of the satellite will be to demonstrate the performance of 3-D printed carbon fibre

Environment & Ecology

Henderson Island: World Heritage-listed site most polluted place on planet

  • Henderson Island is a remote place in the South Pacific that has been found to be the most polluted place on the planet. It has 37 million pieces littered on its beaches.
  • According to the research the beaches of the World Heritage-listed Island – littered with an estimated 7 million pieces of plastic.
  • It is a part of the UK’s Pitcairn Islands territory.
  • The debris weighed 17.6 tonnes and it is the highest density of plastic rubbish in the world
  • There were 671.6 items of debris per square metre on Henderson Island, which lies between Chile and New Zealand in the South Pacific.
  • The 55% of the world’s seabirds including two species found on Henderson Island are at risk from marine debris.

Sports Current Affairs

Mohammad Anas breaks 400m National Record Qualifies For World Championships

  • Mohammad Anas from Kerala has broken the national record in men’s 400m race and won a gold medal at the third leg of the Indian Grand Prix Athletics Meet in New Delhi.
  • He also qualified for the World Championships to be held in London in August.
  • Rajiv Arokia and Sachin Baby were second and third in 46.32 seconds and 47.18 seconds respectively.

ICC hikes prize money for Champions Trophy 2017

  • International Cricket Council (ICC)has hiked the prize money for 2017 Champions Trophy by $500,000, making it $4.5 million with a winner’s share of $2.2 million.
  • The runner-up of the tournament will get a cheque of US $1.1 million, while the other two semi-finalists will earn US $450,000 each.
  • Teams finishing third in each group will take home US $90,000 each, while the teams finishing last in each group will get US $60,000 each.