19th June 2017 – Current Affairs Today

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National Current Affairs

CRPF launches toll-free helpline ‘Madadgaar’ to assist Kashmiri people

  • The helpline is the first of its kind in Kashmir with a toll free number (14411).
  • The aim of the helpline is to assist Kashmiris, especially students studying all over the country who face security issues and other problems away from the home.

KIP for young overseas Indians

  • The Know India Program is a three-week orientation program for the Indian diaspora.
  • This program is aimed at promoting awareness on different facets of life in India and the progress made by the country in various fields such as economic and education.
  • It provides a unique forum for students and young professionals of Indian origin to visit India, share their views, expectations and experiences and develop closer bonds with the contemporary India.

149 new Post Office Passport Kendras in second phase

  • In the first phase 86 POPSKs were to be set up — 52 of which are now functional.
  • Apart from centres in the post offices, the government had earlier also announced 16 full-fledged PSKs taking the total number of new centres to the 251.
  • Earlier it had only 77 PSKs to cater to the whole nation
  • The government has planned to set a target and decided that no individual should have to travel more than 50 km for a passport.

Atal Pension Yojana (APY) can now be subscribed digitally through [email protected]

  • Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) the administrative authority of Atal Pension Yojana (APY) has now introduced [email protected]
  • The digital subscription to APY has been enabled to give additional push to cover the as yet unreached population at greater ease.
  • It is administered by Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA).
  • All Indian citizens in the age group of 18-40 years are eligible to subscribe for this scheme.
  • APY subscribers’ base is more than 54 Lakhs subscribers.

Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram Celebrates 100 Years

  • Mahatma Gandhi lived in the ashram, situated on the banks of Sabarmati River in Ahmedabad along with his wife Kasturba from 1917 and 1930.
  • The Ashram which came into existence on June 17, 1917, has completed 100 years on 17th of June 2017.
  • To mark the event, the Ashram trust has planned several programs, including opening of two permanent galleries at the Ashram, tree plantation and release of two books on Mahatma Gandhi.

International Current Affairs

India-Afghan air freight corridor to open soon

  • The flight which will initially operate once or twice in a month will carry commodities to and from Delhi.
  • The key elements of India’s Afghanistan policy will include – friendly relations with afghan factions, tacit support for anti-Taliban forces, more focus on economic engagement than military engagement, humanitarian and development assistance etc.

Business & Economy

RBI initiates Prompt Corrective Action against Bank of Maharashtra as NPA mounts

  • Reserve Bank has initiated Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) against Bank of Maharashtra (BoM) in view of high level of bad loans and negative return on assets
  • BoM has become the sixth bank to be put under the PCA.
  • The PCA will help in contributing to improve the internal controls of the bank and improvement of its asset quality, profitability and efficiency.
  • For the year ended March 2017, the net non-performing assets (NPAs) of the bank rose to 11.76% while return on assets declined to (-) 1.09%.
  • Bank has reported a loss of Rs 455.4 crore for the fourth quarter, while for entire fiscal 2016-17 booked loss of Rs 1,372 crore.
  • DBI Bank, Indian Overseas Bank, UCO Bank, Dena Bank and Central Bank of India have already come under the PCA initiated by the RBI.

Connaught Place is ninth most expensive office market in world; Mumbai lags

  • Occupancy cost of Connaught Place in Delhi is $153.89 per square feet per annum.
  • Connaught Place was seventh in the last year’s survey.
  • Mumbai’s Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) moved one place up from nineteen to 20 while the Central Business District (CBD) of Nariman Point ranked thirty-third on the list of the top 50 most expensive office markets around the world.
  • Hong Kong (Central) topped as world’s highest-priced office market with an occupancy cost of $302.51 per sq ft per annum.

Adani Group set up 50-MW solar PV plant in Mahoba district of Uttar Pradesh

  • Under the National Solar Mission Scheme the plant has been set up with an investment of Rs. 315 crore.
  • In a first, the plant will use String Inverter Technology with crystalline silicon modules allowing miniature level control of solar power generation.
  • Power generated by the plant will be transmitted through 21.5 kilometre long 132 kilovolts transmission line connecting with UP Power Transmission Corporation’s (UPTCL) Mahoba Substation.
  • With this, Adani Group’s total solar energy capacity goes up to 838 MW.

Awards

Queen of Dhwayah, Kerala’s first beauty pageant for transgender women

  • Syama Sanju was declared the Queen of Dhwayah, the winner at Kerala’s first ever beauty pageant for transgender women.
  • Jaz D’souza was crowned the first runner-up while Harini Chandana came third from among fifteen participants.

Science & Technology

Electric propulsion to usher in new era of satellite launches

  • Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has been working on a new propulsion system known as the Electric Propulsion (EP) system that is set to usher in a new era of cost effective satellite launches.
  • The Electric Propulsion (EP) system converts solar energy into electrical energy which, in turn, is used to change the velocity of a satellite in space.
  • This technology was first used as a technology demonstrator in GSAT-9 or the South Asia Satellite.

NASA’s Orion spacecraft passes key safety tests

  • NASA’s Orion spacecraft, designed to take astronauts to deep space destinations successfully completed a series of tests for its critical safety systems.
  • The launch abort system is an important part of making sure that crew members stay safe on the launch pad and on their way to space.
  • The abort motor is responsible for propelling the crew module away from the Space Launch System rocket in case of an emergency, and one of three total motors that will send the crew module to a safe distance away from a failing rocket and orient it properly for a safe descent into the Atlantic Ocean if such a situation ever occurs.

NASA reveals first target for James Webb Megatelescope

  • It will observe Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune, as well as Trappist-1e and the massive space telescope will also observe distant galaxies and asteroids.
  • According to NASA, the initial observations will explore a broad spectrum of the universe’s mysteries, including the first light and the birth of stars and planets.
  • These targets include objects both inside and beyond our solar system, from Trojan asteroids to the mysterious world Trappist-1e.
  • The James Webb telescope has been described as a ‘time machine’ that could help unravel the secrets of our universe.
  • It will be launched in 2018 and it will be the world’s biggest and most powerful telescope, capable of peering back 200 million years after the Big Bang.

Sports Current Affairs

 No ICC World T20 in 2018, next edition in 2020

  • The main reason is the top member nations will be busy with bilateral commitments in 2018.
  • International Cricket Council, the next edition of ICC World T2O will only be held in 2020. However, the venue is yet to be decided.
  • The ICC World T-20 could be held in South Africa or Australia in 2020.
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