Current Affairs Today August 29 2018

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Current Affairs Today August 29 2018

 INDIAN AFFAIRS

Cabinet Approvals as on August 29, 2018
i. On August 29, 2018, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi gave its approval for increase in project outlay for the India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) from Rs. 800 crore to Rs. 1,435 crore.
ii. On August 29, 2018, the Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modihas approved an additional installment of Dearness Allowance (DA) to Central Government employees and Dearness Relief (DR) to pensioners w.e.f. 01.07.2018.
iii. On August 29, 2018, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi approved he umbrella scheme “Ocean Services, Technology, Observations, Resources Modelling and Science (O-SMART)”………………………..Click here to Read more

Cabinet Approvals with Foreign Countries as on August 29, 2018
i. On August 29, 2018, the Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi approved the signing of MOU between India and Bulgaria for strengthening cooperation in the field of Tourism.
ii. The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi approved on the cooperation between Research Designs and Standards Organisation (RDSO), India and Republic of Korea Railroad Research Institute (KRRI).
iii. The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi approved MoU between India and United Kingdom (UK) and Northern Ireland for cooperation in the fields of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries.
iv. On August 29, 2018, the Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi approved the revised air services agreement between India and Morocco.
v. On August 29, 2018, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi approved the trade cooperation framework between India and Rwanda.
vi. On August 29, 2018, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi approved the signing of an MoU between Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) and the Federal Insurance Office, USA……………………………………..Click here to Read more

NMCG Approves Projects Worth Nearly 150 Crore Rupees for Cleaning the River and Its Banks
On 28th August 2018, the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) approved projects worth Rs 150 crores in Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal under the Namami Gange programme, in its 5th Executive Committee meeting held in New Delhi.
Key Points:
i. These projects comprise Interception and Diversion (I&D) works in which small rivers, rivulets and drains are intercepted before they empty into the main river.
ii. They are diverted to Sewage Treatment Plants (STP), hence the water that drains into the main river is clean. Development of Ghats is also included in the projects.
iii. State-wise approvals of projects:

  • Uttarakhand: I&D projects for Rispana and Bindal Rivers in Dehradun worth Rs 60 crores.
  • Uttar Pradesh: development of Ghats in Mirzapur worth Rs.27.41 crore.
  • Bihar: 3.5 MLD capacity STP with its ancillary works and I&D of sewer lines in Sonepur in Bihar worth Rs.30.92 crore. Also, a river front development project in Sonepur worth Rs.22.92 Crore.
  • West Bengal: upgradation/renovation of Ghats and Crematoria at Katwa, Kalna, Agradwip and Dainhat in West Bengal worth Rs. 8.58 crores.
  • Documentation of Cultural Heritage along River Ganga: documentation of the cultural heritage of River Ganga from Gaumukh to Gangasagar through INTACH (Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage).

About National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG):
♦ Director General – Rajiv Ranjan Mishra
♦ Functions under – Ministry of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation

NVIDIA made deep learning technology partner of NITI Aayog for “MoveHack”
On 28th August 2018, computer chip manufacturer NVIDIA collaborated with NITI Aayog as its Deep learning technology partner to support NITI Aayog’s “MoveHack” hackathon.
NVIDIA made deep learning technology partner of NITI Aayog for “MoveHack”Key Points:
i. MoveHack is a global mobility hackathon to crowdsource solutions, which focuses on the future of mobility in India.
ii. As deep learning partner of “MoveHack”, NVIDIA will offer participants with graphics processing unit (GPU), deep learning technologies, and remote access to NVIDIA DGX systems, purpose built deep learning supercomputers. It will also mentor the participants.
iii. Deep learning technology comes under machine learning (ML) in artificial intelligence (AI). It has networks capable of learning unsupervised from data that is unstructured or unlabelled.
About NVIDIA:
♦ Type – Graphics processing units (GPUs) designer & Computer chip manufacturer
♦ Managing Director, NVIDIA South Asia – Vishal Dhupar

MoU signed for skill development of “Arogyamitras” under PMJAY
On 27th August 2018, a MoU was signed between the National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) and National Health Agency (NHA) to provide capacity building for Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY) for effective launch and implementation.
Key Points:
i. The MoU was signed by Dr Indu Bhushan, CEO, NHA and Manish Kumar, MD & CEO, NSDC.
ii. According to the MoU, NSDC will train the Arogyamitras through its Skill Development Centres operating under Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) and Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Kendras (PMKK).
iii. Pradhan Arogyamitras who have been currently recruited/ deputed will be certified by Health Care Sector Skill Council. The Healthcare Sector Skill Council is a non-statutory body for health sector under NSDC.
iv. The Arogyamitras will act as an interface between the beneficiaries and the system.
About Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (PMJAY):
♦ Aim – to provide financial protection to 10.74 crore poor, deprived families who will receive a benefit cover of Rs 5 lakh per family
♦ Launch – 25 September 2018

2 new projects of Punjab and Tripura got sanctioned under Swadesh Darshan Scheme: Tourism Ministry
On August 29, 2018, the Ministry of Tourism sanctioned two new projects under Heritage and North East Circuits of Swadesh Darshan Scheme forRs 164.95 crore in Punjab and Tripura.
Key Points:
In Punjab:
i. In Punjab, the project covers sites of Anandpur Sahib, Fatehgarh Sahib, Chamkaur Sahib, Ferozpur, Amritsar, Khatkar Kalan Kalanour Patiala at the cost of Rs 99.95 crore.
ii. The project includes development including Virtual Reality Shows, CCTV and Wi-Fi facilities, cafeterias, open air theatre etc.
In Tripura:
i. The total project cost will be Rs 65 crore.
ii. The sites of Surma Cherra- Unakoti- Jampui Hills- Gunabati-Bhunaneshwari- Matabari- Neermahal- Boxanagar- Chotta khola- Pilak- Avangchaarra have been covered under this.
iii. Infrastructural development of the sites with interpretation centre, tourist visitor centres, last mile connectivity, illumination of sites and monuments etc will be done.
About Swadesh Darshan:
♦ ‘Swadesh Darshan’ (tour of country) is a flagship scheme of the Ministry of Tourism for the development of thematic circuits of 13 cities in the country in a planned and prioritised manner.
♦ It was launched in 2014-15.

BANKING & FINANCE

RBI Annual Report stated that India remains preferred destination for FDI
On August 29, 2018, according to RBI Annual ReportIndia remains a preferred destination for foreign direct investment (FDI).

RBI Annual Report stated that India remains preferred destination for FDIHighlights of the report:
i. This is due to strong domestic consumption from the both services and agriculture sectors and manufacturing sector.
ii. India received $37.3 billion capital inflow in 2017-18 as compared to $36.3 billion in the previous fiscal. During the 2015-16, the country received $36.06 billion.
iii. The increase in foreign capital flow was mainly due to higher flows into the communication services, retail and wholesale trade, financial services and computer services.
iv. FDI inflows were concentrated mostly in Mauritius and Singapore with almost 61% of total equity investments.
Background:
India’s rank in the World Bank’s report of Ease of Doing Business 2018: 100/190.

$300 Million Agreement signed between Government of India and the World Bank for scaling up India’s Energy Efficiency Program
On August 29, 2018, the Government of India and the IBRD of World Bank signed a total of $300 million agreement for the India Energy Efficiency Scale-Up Program in Delhi.
$300 Million Agreement signed between Government of India and the World Bank for scaling up India’s Energy Efficiency ProgramKey Points:
i. Out of the $300 million, $220 million is a Loan Agreement and a $80 million is a Guarantee Agreement.

  • The $220 million loan,from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) to EESL, has a 5-year grace period, and a maturity of 19 years.
  • The $80 million IBRD guaranteewill partially repay to commercial lenders or investors and enable EESL to raise funds.

ii. The program will be implemented by the Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL).This is one of the several steps being taken by the Government of India to meet its climate change commitments to reduce carbon intensity by 33-35 percent by 2030.
iii. Agreement signed by:

  • Mr. Sameer Kumar Khare, Joint Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance and
  • Mr. Hisham Abdo, Acting Country Director, World Bank India, on behalf of the World Bank.

iv. This project would avoid lifetime greenhouse gas emissions of 170 million tons of CO2and contribute to avoiding an estimated 10 GW of additional generation capacity.
v. Under the Program, EESL will deploy 219 million LED bulbs and tube lights, 5.8 million ceiling fans, and 7.2 million street lights.
Background:
Under Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All (UJALA) program, EESL has already deployed more than 295 million LED bulbs, resulting in avoiding over 7,500 MW of new electricity generation capacity.

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Ruchi Ghanashyam appointed India’s next High Commissioner to UK
On 28th August 2018, Ruchi Ghanashyam was appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to the United Kingdom.
i. Ruchi Ghanashyam is an Indian Foreign Service (IFS) Officer of the 1982 batch. She is at present Secretary at Headquarters.
ii. She has been appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to the United Kingdom.She succeeds YK Sinha who had assumed the charge as the Indian High Commissioner in the UK in December, 2016.

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Navlekha: Google unveils new platform for Indian publishers
On 28th August 2018, Google announced Project Navlekha at its 4th edition of Google for India Event held in New Delhi.Navlekha, which means ‘a new way to write’ in Sanksrit.
Navlekha: Google unveils new platform for Indian publishersNavlekha:
i. Project Navlekha has been launched to enable Indian publishers of regional languages to publish their content online, without facing the trouble of selling printed copies.
ii. The official website of Navlekha can be easily interpreted by users. Users can also obtain help from experts to set up their publication website.
iii. Google will not charge for its publication tools and the domain name for the first 3 years. Users can also sign up for Google’s advertising placement service AdSense and monetise their website.
iv.Other announcements made at the event are:

  • rebranding of Tez to Google pay
  • partnering with Andhra Pradesh to make internet available to secluded areas
  • launching of cheaper Android phones etc.

About Google:
♦ CEO – Sundar Pichai
♦ Headquarters – California, U.S.

SPORTS

Asian Games 2018
Athletics:
Manjit Singh wins gold, Jinson Johnson gets silver in Men’s 800 M:

  • Manjit Singh won gold medal in the men’s 800 metres event by finishing the race in 1:46.15 minutes.
  • Jinson Johnson won silver medal in men’s 800 metres event by finishing in 1:46.35 minutes.
  • This is India’s only second one-two finish in 800m at the Asian Games after Ranjit Singh and Kulwant Singh achieved the feat at the inaugural edition held in New Delhi in 1951.
  • Manjit Singh who hails from Haryana has beaten Sriram Singh’s 42-year-old national record a few months ago. Jinson Johnson is from Kerala.

India’s Dutee Chand wins silver in Women’s 200m:
Dutee Chand finished second with a timing of 23.20 seconds and won silver medal in the women’s 200m event. This is her second silver medal in the Asian Games 2018. She hails from Odisha.

India clinches silver in first ever 4x400m Mixed Relay:

  • India finished second with a timing of 3 minute and 15.71 seconds and won a silver medal in the debut event of 400m mixed relay race.
  • The Indian team consisted of Muhammed Anas, M.R. Poovamma, Hima Das and Arokia Rajiv.

Arpinder Singh wins gold in men’s triple jump:

  • Arpinder Singh made a best jump of 16.77m in his third attempt and won gold medal in the men’s triple jump event.
  • This is India’s first men’s triple jump gold medal in 48 years after Mohinder Singh Gill won it in 1970.

Table Tennis:
Sharath Kamal, Manika Batra clinch bronze in mixed doubles table tennis

  • Sharath Kamal and Manika Batra won bronze medal in mixed doubles table tennis. Sharath Kamal and Manika Batra lost to China’s Wang Chuqin and Sun Yingsha 9-11, 5-11, 13-11, 4-11, 8-11 in the semifinal.
  • Manika Batra has became the first Indian woman to win a medal in table tennis in the Asian Games.

Kurash
India’s Pincky Balhara and Malaprabha Jadhav win silver and bronze in Kurash

  • Pincky Balhara has won silver medal and Malaprabha Jadhav has won bronze medal in the women’s 52kg category Kurash.
  • Pincky Balhara lost 0-10 to Uzbekistan’s Gulnor Sulaymanova in the final. Malaprabha Jadhav lost to Uzbekistan’s Gulnor Sulaymanova 0-10 in the semifinal.
  • Pincky Balhara is 19 years old. She hails from Neb Sarai village in Delhi. Malaprabha Jadhav is from Belgaum.
  • Kurash is a form of wrestling indigenous to central Asia. It has made its debut at the Asian Games 2018. Click here to read – India’s Medal Tally in Asian Games 2018

IMPORTANT DAYS

International Day against Nuclear Tests – 29 August
On 29th August 2018, International Day against Nuclear Tests was observed all over the world.
International Day against Nuclear Tests:
i. In 2009, the United Nations General Assembly declared 29 August as the International Day against Nuclear Tests. The first International Day against Nuclear Tests was observed in 2010.
ii. This day is observed to create awareness on the importance of banning nuclear weapon tests among the United Nations Member States, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, youth networks, media, etc.
iii. Activities like symposia, conferences, exhibits, competitions, publications, lectures in academic institutions, media broadcasts, etc are conducted on this day.

National Sports Day & Dhyan Chand’s Birthday – August 29
On 29th August 2018, National Sports Day was celebrated all over India.

National Sports Day & Dhyan Chand's Birthday – August 29National Sports Day:
i. In India, National Sports Day is celebrated on August 29 every year on the birth anniversary of Indian hockey legend Major Dhyan Chand.
ii. Major Dhyan Chand who was born on 29 August 1905 was known for his extraordinary goal-scoring skills. He had won 3 Olympic gold medals in hockey. He passed away on 3rd December 1979.
iii. Every year on National Sports Day, Arjuna and Khel Ratna awards are conferred by the President to extraordinary Indian athletes.
iv. This year it has been postponed to 25 September as the athletes are currently taking part in Asian Games 2018 in Indonesia.