Current Affairs Today May 29 2018

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 INDIAN AFFAIRS

Dr Jitendra Singh announces Rs 28 crore for ‘Brahmaputra Study Centre’ at Gauhati University
On 29th May 2018, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh ​said that, the​ Government has approved to set up “Brahmaputra Study Centre” at Gauhati University, Guwahati.
Brahmaputra Study Centre:
i. Funds of Rs. 28 crore will be offered by the Ministry of DoNER for establishing the ‘Brahmaputra Study Centre’.
ii. The Gauhati University will offer land within the campus to develop a separate block for the Brahmaputra Study Centre.
iii. This Study Centre will offer research on various aspects of river Brahmaputra in physics, hydrology, waterways, environment, disaster and flood management, hydro-power production etc.
iv. This Study Centre will focus on research on the causes and prevention of frequent floods in the river. Some internationally renowned scholars from other parts of the world will also be a part of this centre.
About Gauhati University:
♦ Vice-Chancellor – Dr Mridul Hazarika
♦ Location – Guwahati, Assam

Samagra Resource Portal & mobile app developed for use in hi-tech classes in Kerala
On 31st May 2018, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan will inaugurate the Samagra Resource Portal and mobile app.
Samagra Resource Portal:
i. More than 40,000 classrooms in Kerala will be made hi-tech by June 2018, through the Samagra Resource Portal and mobile app.
ii. The Samagra Resource Portal and mobile app are developed by the Kerala Infrastructure and Technology for Education.
iii. Samagra differs from conventional educational portals. It is designed to make sure that all learning objectives are transacted through lesson plans as specified in the curriculum.
iv. Also, it offers digital textbooks, question banks and e-resources. These are available for everyone, even without the need to log in.
v. It has more than 19,000 digital resources in the form of videos, audios, pictures, interactive simulations, etc.
vi. Specific training on Samagra has already been provided to 74,000 teachers. Under the IT@School Project of Kerala government, it was planned to digitise 45,000 classrooms in Kerala and make them hi-tech.
viii. The first phase will cover classes 8 to 12 and the second phase will cover classes from 1 to 7.
Some National Parks in Kerala:
♦ Silent Valley National Park
♦ Periyar National Park
♦ Pampadum Shola National Park

Union Cabinet Minister of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprise (HI & PE), Anant Geete inaugurated the facilities under NATRIP at ICAT Manesar
On 29th May 2018, Union Cabinet Minister of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprise (HI & PE), Anant Geete inaugurated the augmented facilities at the National Automotive Testing and RND Infrastructure Project (NATRIP) at the International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT) at Manesar in Haryana.

Union Cabinet Minister of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprise (HI & PE), Anant Geete inaugurated the facilities under NATRIP at ICAT ManesarFacilities under NATRIP at ICAT Manesar:
i. The augmented facilities are as follows:

  • Noise, Vibration & Harshness Lab (NVH)
  • Passive Safety Lab (PSL)
  • Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Lab
  • Tyre Test Lab (TTL)

ii. Already the centre has fully functional facilities like Powertrain lab, Fatigue lab, Vehicle Evaluation lab, Component lab, CAD-CAE lab and Infotronics lab.
iii. Since 2006, ICAT has been providing automotive testing and certification services to the industry.
iv. NATRIP is the largest and most important initiative in the automotive sector. It involves tie up between the Indian Government, various State Governments and Indian Automotive Industry.
v. It aims to develop advanced testing, validation and R&D infrastructure in India.
About International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT):
♦ Location – Manesar, Haryana
♦ Functions – under NATRiP (National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project), Government of India

Main event of 4th International Yoga Day Celebrations in Dehradun, Uttarakhanad
On May 29,2018, Secretary to the Ministry of AYUSH, Shri Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha announced that the main event of the 4th International Yoga Day celebrations will be organized in Dehradun, Uttarakhand.

Main event of 4th International Yoga Day Celebrations in Dehradun, UttarakhanadKey points:
i. It will be the venue for Mass Yoga Demonstration.
ii. The Government of Uttarakhand is making arrangements for the main event.

Delhi to Nanda Devi East base camp : Joint Indo-Bangladesh Army Trekking Expedition
On May 28,2018, joint Indo-Bangladesh Army Trekking Expedition to Nanda Devi has started from New Delhi.

Delhi to Nanda Devi East base camp : Joint Indo-Bangladesh Army Trekking ExpeditionKey points:
i. This joint expedition will further strengthen the relatioons of the two concerned countries .
ii. The team has a 16-member Indian Armyteam and a 10-member Bangladesh Army team.
iii. Mt Nanda Devi east base camp is located 4300m from the sea level and has a very challenging trekking route.

Gujarat govt launches ‘Reuse of Treated Waste Water Policy’
On May 29,2018, the Gujrat government released policy to reuse treated waste  water in Gandhinagar,Gujrat.

Gujarat govt launches ‘Reuse of Treated Waste Water Policy’Objective:
To reuse and treated waste water and reduce state’s dependency on fresh water resources like Narmada River.
Salient Features:
i. The policy is called : ‘Reuse of Treated Waste Water Policy’.
ii. Setting up of161 Sewage treatment Plants (STP) in all major towns in Gujrat for non-drinking purposes.
iii. The treated water would be used in industrial units, thermal power plants, gardening, and in the construction sectors.
iv. Presently , around 2600 million litres per day(MLD) waste water is being treated by the 52 STPs in  the state.
v. This policy will double the water capacity to around 5000 million litres per day (MLD)in two years.
INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS Mandatory for Thermal power plants  located within a radius of 50 kmsof an STP to use the treated water. This also applies to Industries and industrial parks consuming over 1 lakh litres of water per day.
vii. The state would disconnect Fresh water connection given to them after this policy comes to being.
Gujrat:
Capital: Gandhinagar.
Chief Minister : Vijay Rupani

Gaj Yatra launched in Garo Hills of Meghalaya
On 28th May 2018, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change and the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) launched the ‘Gaj Yatra’ from Tura, a town in Garo Hills of Meghalaya.

Gaj Yatra launched in Garo Hills of MeghalayaGaj Yatra:
i. In 2014, villagers in Garo Hills offered a part of their community-owned land to develop village reserve forests for the passage of elephants.
ii. To honour this effort the Gaj Yatra has been launched. The Gaj Yatra aims to secure 100 elephant corridors in India.
iii. Four of such corridors are in Meghalaya. As a part of the event, an elephant mascot is carried across districts where elephants cross frequently to create awareness among the people.

Bihar Cabinet approves Fisheries College at Kishanganj
On 29th May 2018, Bihar Cabinet approved the setting up of a Fisheries College at Kishanganj at a cost of Rs 40.31 crore.
Fisheries College at Kishanganj:
i. The cabinet meeting was chaired by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. It approved the creation of academic and administrative posts other than development of infrastructure of the College at a cost of Rs 40.31 crore in 2018-19 financial year.
ii. It also approved creation of 88 new posts in Transplant and Nephrology departments of Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH) for starting the kidney transplant facility there.
UNESCO World Heritage Site 
♦ Historic City of Ahmedabad, Rani ki Vav, Champaner Pavagadh Archeological Park.

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

2nd edition of SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group Meeting : Beijing on 28 May, 2018
On May 28,2018, The 2nd meeting of SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group Meeting was held in Beijing .

2nd edition of SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group Meeting : Beijing on 28 May, 2018Key points:
i. The Indian Delegation was headed by Additional Secretary (Multilateral Diplomacy ) Gitesh Sharma .
ii. India focused on security challenges on the borders of Afghanistan and offered support to peace made by the President of Afghanistan.
iii. India also focused on the socio-economic development of the afghan people and ensured greater connectivity with Afghanistan.
iv. Bilateral talks of India with China, Tajikistan, Russia, Afghanistan were also held.
About Shanghai Cooperation Organisation(SCO):
♦ It consists of China, Kazakhstan , Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan , India and Pakistan. India and Pakistan became a part of this group in 2017.
♦ Iran, Afghanistan, Belarus and Mongolia is each an observer in the SCO.
♦ Headquarters: Beijing , China.

Azerbaijan inaugurates European gas pipeline
On 29th May 2018, Azerbaijan inaugurated a pipeline at Sangachal Terminal, in Azerbaijan.
Azerbaijan inaugurates European gas pipeline:
i. Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev turned on the taps at Sangachal Terminal. The Sangachal Terminal is located nearly 55 kilometres southwest of Azerbaijan’s capital Baku.
ii. This pipeline will eventually create the first direct route to transport gas from one of the world’s largest fields to Europe bypassing Russia.
iii. The project is worth USD 40-billion. It consists of three linked pipelines that will bring gas from Azerbaijani Shah Deniz 2 field across Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, Greece, Albania and the Adriatic Sea to southern Italy.

BANKING & FINANCE

India signs Loan Agreement with the World Bank for USD 21.7 Million for Strengthening the Public Financial Management in Rajasthan Project
On 29th May 2018, an agreement for IBRD Credit of USD 21.7 Million from World Bank for the Strengthening of Public Financial Management in Rajasthan Project was signed in New Delhi.

India signs Loan Agreement with the World Bank for USD 21.7 Million for Strengthening the Public Financial Management in Rajasthan ProjectIndia signs Loan Agreement with the World Bank:
i. The agreement was signed by Sameer Kumar Khare, Joint Secretary (FB and ADB), Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance on behalf of Indian Government and Mr. Hisham Abdo, Acting Country Director, World Bank (India) on behalf of the World Bank.
ii. The Implementing Entity Agreement was signed by the Secretary, Finance (Budget) on behalf of Rajasthan Government, and the Acting Country Director (India) on behalf of the World Bank.
iii. Project size: is nearly USD 31 million. Out of this USD 21.7 million will be funded by the World Bank. Rest of the amount will be funded-out of the State Budget.
iv. Duration of this project: is 5 years. The objective of this project is to contribute to enhanced Budget execution, better accountability and improved efficiency in Revenue Administration in Rajasthan.
v. This Project also involves Strengthening of the Public Financial Management Framework, Strengthening of Expenditure and Revenue Systems, and Project Management and Capacity Building etc.
About World Bank:
♦ President – Jim Yong Kim
♦ Headquarters – Washington, D.C., U.S.

BUSINESS & ECONOMY

IFFCO, IPL buy 37 per cent stake in Jordan’s largest mining firm for Rs 900 cr
IFFCO (Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative) and Indian Potash Ltd (IPL) have acquired 37 % stake in JPMC (Jordan Phosphate Mines Company), Jordan’s largest mining and chemical firm, for Rs 900 crore.
IFFCO, IPL buy 37 per cent stake in JPMC:
i. The shares were bought from Kamil Holdings, owned by Brunei Investment Agency. It is the largest shareholder in Jordan Phosphate Mines Company (JPMC).
ii. IPL has bought 27 % stake. IFFCO through its subsidiary Kisan International Trading (KIT) has bought 10 % in JPMC.

DAC approved procurement of equipments for Army and the Air Force under ‘BUY(Indian) IDDM’  
On May 29,2018, The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC ) chaired by Defence Minister Ms Nirmala Sitharaman has approved of the acquisition of defence equipment.
Objective:
To establish indegenisation of Indian growing techonological sector for Defence manufacturing .
Key Points:
i. This procurement amounts to a value of Rs. 6900 crore.
ii. procurement of : Thermal Imaging (TI)for 84mm Rocket Launcher for the Indian Army will help to engage and detect any movements at night under ‘Buy Indian-IDDM’ .
iii. procurement of : Long Range Dual Band Infrared Imaging Search and Track System (IRST) for SU-30 MKI aircraft under Make ‘II’ subcategory of ‘Buy (Indian-IDDM)’  for atleast 100 IRSTs.
iv. Approvals of procurement of total Rs. 43844 crorehas been signed of which Rs. 32,253 crore would be of ‘Make in India’ category.

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

Virat Kohli as International Cricketer of Year : CEAT Cricket Ratings
On May 29,2018, Virat Kohli named the International Cricketer of the year at CEAT Chricket Ratings.
Key points:
i. Shikhar Dhawan has been awarded International Batsman of the Year .
ii. New Zealand player Trent Boult named International Bowler of the Year .
iii. T20 Bowler of the Year ward was given to : Rashid Khan from Afghanistan.
iv. T20 Batsman of the Year award : Colin Munroof New Zealand.
v. Outstanding Innings of the year award : Harmanpreet Kaur.
vi. Domestic Player of the Year award : Mayank Agarwal.
vii. U19 Player of the Year award :  Shubhman Gill.
viii. Popular Choice award : Chris Gayle.
ix. Lifetime Achievement Award : Farokh Engineer.

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Former SC judge R K Agrawal appointed NCDRC president
On 28th May 2018, Justice R K Agrawal was appointed as the president of the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC).

Former SC judge R K Agrawal appointed NCDRC presidentJustice R K Agrawal – NCDRC president:
i. Justice R K Agrawal retired as Supreme Court judge recently. He will replace Justice D K Jain. D K Jain’s term ends on 31st May 2018.
ii. NCDRC was formed in 1988. It was set up to decide on consumers’ complaints.

Rajasekharan sworn in as Mizoram Governor
On 29th May 2018, Kummanam Rajasekharan was sworn-in as the 18th governor of Mizoram at the Durbar hall of Raj Bhavan, Mizoram.
Kummanam Rajasekharan – Mizoram Governor:
i. The oath of office to Kummanam Rajasekharan was administered in the presence of Mizoram Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla.
ii. Kummanam Rajasekharan joined Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) as an activist in the 1970s. He became the president of Kerala BJP unit in 2015.

Defence secretary Sanjay Mitra gets additional charge of DRDO
On May 29,2018, Government of India announced that Defence Secretary Sanjay Mitra has been given Additional charge of DRDO .
i. The current DRDO chief is S. Christopher and will retire after the extended one year tenure in 2018.
ii. The DRDO chief and Scientific Advisor post was held by one person until 2015 when government bifurcated these two to individual post.

Alicia Pucheta first woman interim president of Paraguay
On May 29,2018, Alicia Pucheta (68) has been named as the first woman President of Paraguay.

Alicia Pucheta first woman interim president of Paraguayi. She has been named the interim president after the current President Mr. Horacio Cartes steps down and before Mr. Mario Abdo ( The newly elected president )starts his tenure for 5 years.
ii. She is currently acting as the Vice President of the country.
iii. She is a lawyer by profession and is a part of right wing Colorado Party.
Paraguay:
Considered Latin Americas’ poorest country .
Capital: Asunción
Currency: Paraguayan guaraní

Chiranjeev Prasad appointed Aurangabad police commissioner
On May 29,2018, a 1996 batch IPS officer , Chiranjeev Prasad was appointed Aurangabad Police Commissioner.
i. He succeeded former full time police chief Yashaswi Yadav.
ii. Mr Prasad was a Inspector General of Nanded Range .
Maharashtra:
♦ Unesco World Heritage Site – Elephanta caves, Ajanta Caves, Ellora Caves, Kailash Temple (Ellora)
♦ Chief Minister-Devendra Fadnavis.

Senior journalists Devulapalli as new President and Indrajit as new Secretary-General: IJU
On May 29,2018, Senior Journalists Amar Devulapalli and Sabina Indrajit have been appointed as the President and the Secretary –General of the Indian Journalists Union (IJU) .
Key points:
i. Devulapalli is a Hyderabad based journalist who is the consulting editor of Shakshi daily.
ii. Indrajit is a senior journalist in Delhi and works as the Associate Editor of Indian News and Features Agency (INFA).
iii. They would be replacing former President Mr. S N Sinha  and former Secretary –General K Sreenivas Reddy.

OBITUARY

Former Bihar minister Kameshwar Paswan passes away
On 28th May 2018, former Bihar minister Kameshwar Paswan died after a long term illness in Patna, Bihar.
Death of Kameshwar Paswan:
i. Kameshwar Paswan was 77 years old. He started his political career representing Fatuha Assembly constituency.
ii. He was elected from the seat for two times in 1970s. He was a minister between 1977 and 1979. He was elected to the Rajya Sabha in 1990.

IMPORTANT DAYS

International Day of UN Peacekeepers for 70 years is being celebrated
On May 29,2018, International Day of UN Peacekeepers is celebrated each year.

International Day of UN Peacekeepers for 70 years is being celebratedi. Theme of 2018 International Day of UN Peacekeepers is : 70 Years of Service and Sacrifice.
ii. It is observed internationally to pay tribute to the 3700  uniformed and civil personnel ho lost their lives upholding peace.
iii. This was celebrated since 1948.
iv. UN Headquarters: New York, US.