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10th edition of Agriculture Census data for 2015-16 released by Agriculture Ministry
i. On October 1, 2018, 10th Agriculture Census 2015-16 was released by the Agriculture Ministry.
ii. It was first launched in 3rd February, 2016.
iii. The percentage of female operational land holders increased from 12.79% in 2010-11 to 13.87% in 2015-16.
iv. It also showed a decline of 1.53% of total operated area to 157.14 million hectare as compared to 159.59 million ha in 2010-11 data. And in terms of operated area women participation increased from previous 10.36% to 11.57%
v. By the number of people tilling the land, Uttar Pradesh topped the chart followed by Bihar and Maharshtra.
vi. In terms of total operated area: Rajasthan comes first followed by Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka……………………………………….Click here to Read more
Project Utkrisht launched by Indian Railways
On October 2, 2018, Indian Railways launched its Project ‘Utkrisht’.
Railways has plans to develop 640 Utkrisht rakes as part of upgradation of its mail/express trains in the next two years at a cost of Rs 4 billion.
i.In the first phase 140 rakes is to be developed by March 2019.
ii.The Facilities offered by the Project Utkrisht are:
- Installing ‘Swachh Rail Toilet’,
- Fitting of energy-efficient LED lights – in the main interior, doorway, gangway and inside toilets,
- Provision of dustbins in the toilets,
- Stickers with ‘Go Green‘ messages,
- Provision of integrated basin-cum-dustbins in AC coaches.
- Braille signage & night glow stickers,
- LED panel photo frame in first AC coaches, new types of bottle holders, big size mirrors,
- Anti-graffiti vinyl wrapping in the gangway area,
- New types of fire extinguishers,
- Health faucets, auto janitors, odonil containers, big size mirror etc.
iii. The first train to have been revamped is: 12311/12312 Howrah-Kalka Mail of Eastern Railway which was coloured beige and maroon.
iv.It is developed as ‘green rakes‘ (consisting of 20 or 22 coaches) at Eastern Railways’ Liluah workshop,which cost Rs 600,000 each.
Indian Railways is planning to roll out 500 more by March 2020.
♦ Union Miister: Piyush Goyal.
National Khadi Festival 2018 inaugurated by Union MSME Minister
On October 2, 2018, Union Minister for Micro Small & Medium Enterprises, Shri Giriraj Singh inaugurated a month long- National Khadi Festival 2018 in Mumbai.
To promote Khadi products
i. This event was organized by Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC).
ii. Around 100 institutions from across the country participated in the event.
iii. Loan disbursal to successful MSMEs was enhanced to over Rs. 1 crore by the ministry from the earlier range of Rs. 25 lakh to Rs. 1 crore.
iv. The Minister also launched the PMEGP Portal – a tool for increasing employment in micro enterprises.
v. He also inaugurated an exhibition and planted four moringa saplings in the premises of Central Office, Khadi and Village Industries Commission.
vi. At the Event, the various programs included were: Khadi Sangam (under which exhibitions will be organized in 300 districts to promote Khadi products), e-commerce tie-ups, designing competitions for youngsters, World Khadi Congress, Gandhi Parv.
♦ Capital: Mumbai.
♦ Chief Minister: Devendra Fadnavis.
♦ Governor: C. Vidyasagar Rao.
♦ National Parks: Tadoba Andheri Tiger Reserve, Chandoli National Park, Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Navegaon National Park.
NAREDCO & Housing Ministry signed MoU to provide skill training to 2.5 lakh urban poor in construction sector
On September 29, 2018, the National Real Estate Development Council (NAREDCO) signed an MoU with the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs for training of 2.5 lakh urban poor in the construction sector.
i. This will be implemented under Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Urban Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NULM).
ii. The implementation of this initiative will be carried out through training providers empanelled with the Construction Sector Skill Council (CSDCI).
iii. The initiative will focus on minimum 80 hours (10 days) to a maximum of 6 months of training for skill the semi-skilled construction workers.
♦ Headquarters: New Delhi.
♦ National President: Niranjan Hiranandani
IIT-Kharagpur named national coordinator for research scheme- ‘SPARC’ of HRD ministry
On October 3, 2018, IIT-Kharagpur was named the national coordinating institute of the Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC) under the Ministry of Human Resource Development.
i. As a national coordinating institute, it would do the following:
- Routing SPARC funds,
- Managing the online portal,
- Coordinating with the other nodal institutes of India,
- Organising two annual SPARC conferences and
- Managing the intellectual output of SPARC.
ii.The Ministry also launched a dedicated web portal for SPARC- www.sparc.iitkgp.ac.in, which will be active from October 4 to November 15.
About Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC):
i. This scheme aims to improve the research ecosystem of India’s higher educational institutions by:
- Promoting academic and research collaboration between Indian institutions and best-in-class faculty and renowned research groups in foreign institutions.
ii. 28 foreign countries have been targeted in the first phase of the scheme.
iii. It includes those belonging to top QS World University Rankings.
♦ Launched : 2018.
♦ Budget : Rs. 418 crore for 2018-20.
Yuva Nestam launched in Andhra capital of Amaravati on Gandhi Jayanti
On October 2, 2018, on the eve of Gandhi Jayanti, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu launched the ‘Mukhyamantri Yuva Nestham’ scheme in Amaravati.
i. According to the scheme, an amount of Rs. 1000 will be given as monthly unemployment allowance to eligible jobless youth of the state.
ii. It would also provide skill training to 10 lakh youth and 260 training partners have been appointed for this purpose.
iii. The training partners are from the countries of: Singapore, UK and Germany.
♦ Chief Minister: N Chandrababu Naidu.
♦ Governor: E.S.L Narasimha.
♦ Capital: Amravati.
♦ National Parks: Sri Venkateswara National Park, Rajiv Gnadhi National Park, Papikonda National Park.
Manipur declared as 23rd open defecation free state: CM of Manipur
On October 3, 2018, Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh declared Manipur as the 23rd state in the country to become Open Defecation Free (ODF) in India.
i. It is the 5th North-Eastern state to get the tag.
ii. This announced during the celebration of National Cleanliness Day at Gandhi Memorial Hall in Imphal.
iii. He also launched the Google Toilet Locator to enable locating nearest public toilet for use.
♦ Chief Minister: N Biren Singh.
♦ Governor: Najma Heptulla.
♦ Capital: Imphal.
♦ National Parks: Keibul Lamjao National Park, Sirohi National Park.
Sahyog-Hop Tac 2018: joint exercise of India, Vietnam commenced in Chennai
On October 3, 2018, a joint exercise of ‘Sahyog-Hop Tac 2018’ commenced off Chennai coast between Vietnam and India.
i. In this bilateral exercise, Vietnam Coast Guard ship CSB 8001 took part in it or the first time.
ii. A vessel ‘Sagar Manjusha’, owned by National Institute of Ocean Technology and vessels from Indian coast guard took part in it as well.
iii. This exercise enhance cooperation between the two Coast Guards in areas of maritime safety and security.
It is part of an MoU for cooperation was signed between the countries in 2015.
♦ Capital: Hanoi.
♦ Currency: Vietnamese dong.
14 –day IBSAMAR VI: India, Brazil & SA Navies train to build interoperability in South Africa
On October 1, 2018, the a 14 –day 6th edition of IBSAMAR, a joint Multi – National Maritime Exercise between the Indian, Brazilian and South African Navies commenced at Simons Town, South Africa.
i. The Indian Navy is represented by:
Guided Missile Frigate INS Tarkash, Guided Missile Destroyer INS Kolkata, Long Range Maritime Patrol Aircraft P8I, Seaking and Chetak helicopters as well as a MARCOS contingent.
ii. Alongside this exercise, a IBSA Joint Defence Working Group meeting will also be held in South Africa.
♦ For the first time, earlier in 2018 from Feb 19-26, IBSAMAR (IBSAMAR V) was conducted off Goa as all previous exercises were held in South Africa.
♦ Initiated in 2008.
♦ Capital: Pretoria, Cape Town.
♦ Currency: South African rand.
♦ Capital: Brasilia.
♦ Currency: Peso.
India launches ‘Operation Samudra Maitri’ to help tsunami-hit Indonesia
On October 3, 2018, India launched ‘Operation Samudra Maitri’ in Central Sulawesi Province of the Republic of Indonesia.
To assist victims of earthquake and tsunami in Indonesia.
i. The humanitarian assistance operation consisted of the two IAF Aircrafts, C-130J and C-17 along with medical personnel and relief material.
ii. The aircrafts also had tents and equipments to set up a field hospital along with medicines, generators and water.
iii. Also, 3 Indian Naval Ships – INS Tir, INS Sujatha and INS Shardul set sail for the to carry out humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR).
♦ Capital: Jakarta.
♦ Currency: Indonesian rupiah.
♦ President: Joko Widodo.
BANKING & FINANCE
Asian Development Bank (ADB) and India sign $150 Million Loan to improve Regional Connectivity in North Bengal and North-East
On October 1, 2018, Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of India signed a $150 million loan to finance regional connectivity projects in North Bengal and North Eastern states.
i. It is the 2nd tranche of a $500 million loan agreement for the South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) Road Connectivity Investment Program.
ii. It was approved in 2014 and was aimed to develop 500 kms of roads in India’s North Bengal and northeastern region for better regional connectivity to regional and other SASEC member countries.
iii. The new loan will involve:
- Upgradation of 66 kms of nationaland 103 kms of state highways in Manipur,
- Construction of about 1.5 kmof an international bridge between India and Nepal.
♦ Headquarters: Manila, Philippines.
♦ President: Takehiko Nakao.
♦ Established in 1966.
♦ Members: 67 (48 regional members).
UNCTAD expects India’s GDP to rise 7% in 2018
On September 26, 2018, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in its Trade and Development Report predicted the GDP growth of India for 2018 to be at 7%.
i. Previously in 2017, it was 6.2%.
ii. According to the report, India’s GDP grew 8.2% in the April-June quarter especially due to manufacturing and better farm sector performance.
iii. The main reasons for overall 7% growth are:
Expansion in services and higher demand for exports.
iv. It also stated the following:
- Countries like India and Thailandare more prone to vulnerability due to being a preferred investment destination,
- Policies for prevention of misuse of data by digital platforms must be made,
- Rising NPAs and restricted credit expansion may affect investment and growth.
♦ Headquarters: Geneva, Switzerland.
♦ Secretary-General: Mukhisa Kituyi .
Bajaj Finance increased fixed deposit rate of interest across various customer categories
On October 3, 2018, Bajaj Finance, the lending and investment arm of Bajaj Finserv, increased its interest rate for Fixed Deposits.
i. The following table shows the changes:
|Tenor||Category||Increased rate in per cent|
|36-60 months||Senior citizens||8.85|
|Existing loan & FD customers||8.75|
|15 months Special tenor schememinimum FD size of Rs. 1 lakh||New Customers||8.05|
|36 to 60 months (upon Renewal)||Senior citizens||9.10|
♦ Headquarters: Pune, Maharashtra.
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
Infosys Finacle launched digital engagement solution for banks for tailored experiences
On October 3, 2018, Infosys Finacle, a part of Infosys’ product subsidiary EdgeVerve Systems launched a Digital Engagement Suit for banks.
To interact with customers with customized experiences.
i. The digital suite for banks is on a cloud-first architecture.
ii. It would accelerate the speed of internal and external innovation with an ecosystem of partner innovations to engage with end customers, internal users, partners and trusted parties.
iii. It would also offer comprehensive capabilities to engage retail, wealth, small business and corporate customer segments.
iv. This has already been recognized by banks of 78 countries.
♦ Headquarters: Bengaluru.
♦ President: Mohit Joshi.
Udyam Abhilasha: 6-day long National Level Entrepreneurship Awareness Campaign launched by SIDBI
On October 3, 2018, Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) launched a six-day national level entrepreneurship awareness campaign–Udyam Abhilasha.
i. It has been launched in 115 aspirational districts identified by NITI Aayog in 28 States reaching to around 15,000 youth.
ii. This will help 800 trainers create and provide entrepreneurship training to the aspiring youths across these districts.
iii. For its implementation it has partnered with Banks, NABARD, NBFCs, SFBs, District Industries Centres, State Govt. etc.
iv. Also, the Ministry of Electronics & IT, Govt. of India had set up a Special Purpose Vehicle, (CSC SPV)- CSC e-Governance Services India Limitedto work with SIDBI.
v. The campaign would consist of :
- Inspiring rural youth to set up their own enterprise,
- To impart trainings through digital medium across the country,
- To create business opportunities for CSC VLEs,
- To focus on women aspirants and encourage them,
- To assist participants to become bankable and get available facilities from the institutes.
♦ Full Form: Small Industries Development Bank of India.
♦ Headquarters: Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh.
♦ CMD: Shri Mohammad Mustafa.
♦ It is the Principal Financial Institution for the Promotion, Financing, Development and Coordination of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector.
AWARDS & RECOGNITION
South Sudanese surgeon Dr. Evan Atar Adaha receives 2018 Nansen Refugee Award
On 1st October 2018, UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) conferred 2018 Nansen Refugee Award to Dr. Evan Atar Adaha in Geneva, Switzerland.
i. Dr. Evan Atar Adaha is a surgeon from South Sudan. He was awarded for his 20-year medical service to refugees of Sudan and South Sudan.
ii. He was presented the award by Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees.
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
Justice Ranjan Gogoi sworn-in as 46th Chief Justice of India
On 3rd October 2018, Justice Ranjan Gogoi was sworn-in as the 46th Chief Justice of India (CJI).
i. Justice Ranjan Gogoi was administered the oath by President Ram Nath Kovind. He is the first Chief Justice of India from the north-east.
ii. His term will end on November 17, 2019. He replaces Dipak Misra. He hails from Dibrugarh in Assam. He was born on November 18, 1954.
iii. In 2001, he started his career as a Permanent Judge of the Gauhati High Court. In 2010, he was transferred to the Punjab and Haryana High Court and became its Chief Justice in 2011. In 2012, he became a Supreme Court judge.
Barham Salih elected as Iraq’s new president
On 2nd October 2018, Barham Salih was elected as 8th president of Iraq.
i. Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK)’s Barham Salih secured 219 votes while his rival Fuad Hussein of Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) obtained 22 votes in the presidential election.
ii. Barham Salih replaces Fuad Masum. Barham Salih is 58 years old. He is a former prime minister of the Kurdistan Regional Government and a former deputy prime minister of the Iraqi federal government.
iii. He has named Adel Abdul Mahdi as prime minister-designate and has bestowed him the responsibility of forming a new government.
♦ Capital – Baghdad
♦ Currency – Iraqi dinar
♦ Official languages – Arabic, Kurdish
Facebook names Adam Mosseri as CEO of Instagram
Adam Mosseri has been named the CEO (Chief Executive Officer) of Facebook owned Instagram.
i. Adam Mosseri replaces Kevin Systrom who resigned recently. Adam Mosseri was previously the Vice President of Product at Instagram. He had joined Facebook in 2008.
ii. Instagram was founded in 2010 by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger. It was sold to Facebook for $1 billion in 2012.
♦ CEO – Mark Zuckerberg
♦ Headquarters – California, U.S.
Sudhir Garg appointed as CMD of National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC)
MSME Joint Secretary Sudhir Garg has taken charge as interim CMD (Chairman-cum-Managing Director) of National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC).
i. Sudhir Garg has been given additional charge as CMD of NSIC from October 1, 2018, till a period of 3 months or until further orders, whichever is earlier.
ii. NSIC is a PSU (Public Sector Unit) that functions under the administrative control of the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME).
Athlete Sanya Richards-Ross will be the event ambassador for the Airtel Delhi half marathon
Athlete Sanya Richards-Ross has been named as the event ambassador for the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon that will be held on 21st October 2018.
i. Sanya Richards-Ross is a four-time Olympic gold medalist and a seven-time medalist at the World Championships.
ii. She is the fastest American woman in the history of 400m with her record of 48.70s timing set at the IAAF World Cup 2006.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Japan’s Hayabusa2 probe launches new robot MASCOT onto asteroid Ryugu’s surface
On 3rd October 2018, Japan’s Hayabusa2 probe launched the French-German Mobile Asteroid Surface Scout, or MASCOT, towards asteroid Ryugu’s surface.
i. MASCOT weighs 10 kg. It is box-shaped and is equipped with several sensors. It can take images at multiple wavelengths, investigate minerals with a microscope, measure surface temperatures and magnetic fields.
ii. MASCOT will be mostly immobile. It will jump only once on its mission and it can turn on its sides.
iii. It has a maximum battery life of 16 hours. It will transmit the collected data to Hayabusa2.
iv. Hayabusa2 mission was launched in December 2014 to study the origins of the solar system. It will return to Earth with samples in 2020.
About Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA):
♦ President – Hiroshi Yamakawa
♦ Headquarters – Tokyo, Japan
Andhra Pradesh Legislative Council member M V V S Murthy passed away
On 3rd October 2018, Telugu Desam Party leader, educationist and member of Andhra Pradesh Legislative Council M V V S Murthy died in a road accident in the USA.
i. M V V S Murthy was 76 yaers old. He served as member of Lok Sabha from Visakhapatnam for two terms from 1991 to 1996 and 1999 to 2004.
ii. He was elected to Andhra Pradesh Legislative Council in 2014. He was also Chairman of Visakhapatnam Urban Development Authority from 1987 to 1989.
iii. He founded the Gandhi Institute of Technology and Management (GITAM) at Rushikonda, Andhra Pradesh.