G.K. Update 28 April 2016
By: D.K Choudhary
President embarks on two-nation tour to Papua New Guinea and New Zealand
President Pranab Mukherjee leaves New Delhi for a two Nation tour to Papua New Guinea and New Zealand this evening.
This is the first ever state visit of an Indian President to these two countries. Symbolizing the growing strategic and economic engagements with the Pacific Island countries, the President’s first stopover will be Port Moresby, the capital of Papua New Guinea.
He would be holding talks with the Governor General Michael Ogio and Prime Minister Peter O’Neil among others. The President will also interact with the business community and the Indian diaspora. Papua New Guinea is looking towards increasing cooperation in health sector, IT, agriculture and infrastructure and cooperation between India and New Zealand has been on the rise over the years in various fields.
Union Railway Ministry to set up Rs 1 lakh crore Rashtriya Rail Sanraksha Kosh
The Union Railway Ministry has decided to create a 1 lakh crore rupees safety fund named as Rashtriya Rail Sanraksha Kosh (RRSK) to strengthen safety measures on the rail network to prevent accidents.
It was announced by Union Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu in the Lok Sabha while replying to a debate on Demands for Grants for Railways for 2016-17.
The Rashtriya Rail Sanraksha Kosh will be a non-lapsable fund which will be utilized for safety measures. This fund will help Indian Railways to accomplish its zero-accident mission by strengthening the safety measures on the rail network in a comprehensive way.
Government approved the policy for sharing competitive exam scores with private sector
The Government has approved the policy for public disclosure of scores and ranking of the candidates who appear for recruitment examinations conducted by various public recruitment agencies for the benefit of employers in the public and private sector seeking qualified candidates through a portal.
The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) has given some observations in this regard that have been communicated to the concerned authorities.
Earlier, PM Mr. Narendra Modi has stated that scores obtained by candidates in recruitment examinations conducted by government and PSUs will be shared with private sector to help them hire candidates with matching talent. This will create a positive externality,” Modi said at the Bloomberg India Economic Forum.
All new mobiles to have panic button from 2017
The Department of Telecommunications has notified that from next year, all mobile phone sold in India will come with a dedicated ‘panic button’ and will also have the Global Positioning System facility in it. These facility can be used to send out a signal in case of distress.
It aims to improve the safety of women and ensuring a quick response from security agencies or to send out distress signal to a family member or the police authorities so that they can be rescued.
This initiative has been taken by the Ministry of Women and Child Development to issue of installation of a physical panic button on mobile phones in June 2014.
Government to sell its 11.36% stake in NHPC
The Government of India has started the disinvestment process of the current fiscal as the GOI has planned to sell its 11.36% equity shares in the National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC) at rs.21.75.
This disinvestment is likely to raise about rs. 2,700 crore. The issue price of share is at a discount of 5.6% to NHPC’s closing price of Rs 23.05 on BSE.
Presently, the Government holds 85.96 % in NHPC and selling over 125 crore shares (11.36%) which would help it comply with the minimum public shareholding norms. In this disinvestment a minimum of 20% shares have been reserved for retail investors and around 25% shares have been reserved for the mutual fund and insurance companies.
Operation Sulaimani to eradicate Poverty in Kozhikode District
In an initiative to eradicate poverty from the district, the Kozhikode district administration is all set to implement a project named ‘Operation Sulaimani’ to ensure food for the needy in its jurisdiction.
Operation Sulaimani is being implemented in association with the state Hotel and Restaurants Association. Following the implementation of the project, the needy will get food free of cost.
As per the initial plan, through the Operation Sulaimani, around 1,000 people will get food per day. The price of the food will be covered through sponsorship.
Union Tourism Ministry launched NOAPS Web Portal of National Monuments Authority
The Portal was developed through the technology and expertise of Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), who are in the process of mapping of 3686 ASI protected monuments and sites.
The web portal integrates NMA’s portal with the online portal of local bodies of Delhi and Mumbai viz. NDMC, Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) and MCDs to facilitate single window clearance for construction on a common application form.
The applicant need to fill up a single form which will be sent to the concerned agencies by the local body, from whom No Objection Certificate (NOC) is required. However, large projects involving construction of building beyond 2000 square metres have been kept out of the purview of Single Window Clearance System, keeping in view their possible impact on the Monument or the site.
Isuzu opens manufacturing plant in Andhra Pradesh
Isuzu Motors India today opened its manufacturing plant in AP and rolled out its India-made D-Max pick-up. The facility was inaugurated by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu.
The initial production capacity of the plant is 50,000 units per annum and can be scaled up to 1,20,000 units. Isuzu had earlier committed an investment of Rs 3,000 crore for the Indian project.
With its existing operations in the US, Japan and Thailand, this plant in India is expected to provide a manufacturing leg-up to Isuzu globally.
Patanjali to invest Rs 1,150 crore in 2017
Patanjali Ayurved, the FMCG venture promoted by yoga guru Ramdev, will invest over Rs 1,150 crore in the current fiscal to set up six processing units and one R&D center as it chases a turnover of Rs 10,000 crore this year.
These units will come up in Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.
Patanjali Ayurved, which reported a turnover of Rs 5,000 crore in the last fiscal, is also looking at entering the highly competitive dairy segment this year. The company is also working towards increasing its exports and enhance online presence.
BPCL gets green nod for rs. 694 cr LPG project in West Bengal
The state owned fuel retailer BPCL has got the environment clearance nod for its 694 crore rupees LPG project in Haldia Dock Complex in West Bengal.
Based on the recommendations of the expert Appraisal Committee (Industry), the environment ministry has given environmental clearance and Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) clearance to the BPCL’s project in West Bengal.
This is the project of developing LPG import terminal as well as storage, bottling and bulk distribution facilities. The proposed project aims to boost supply and help achieve the government’s target of making LPG available to each household by 2018.
China launches sounding rocket
Today, China has launched a sounding rocket designed to conduct research, take measurements and scientific experiments in the country’s Hainan Province.
Kunpeng-1B was launched from Danzhou City in the early hours today by the National Space Science Center (NSSC).
The rocket fulfilled its mission of taking measurements in the upper atmosphere that will help with research of rocket sounding, high-speed flight and space tourism.
IIT scholar K Ashok Kumar wins international award on plant nutrition
Mr. K Ashok Kumar, a research scholar from IIT Kharagpur (KGP) has won the prestigious International Plant Nutrition Scholar Award.
The award is awarded by the US-based International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI) and carries a cash prize of USD 2,000 and a recognition certificate.
Mr. Kumar is the research scholar at the department of agricultural and food engineering, in IIT Kharagpur. Presently he is pursuing his PhD on ‘Comparative Assessment of Direct and Residual Effects of Organic and Inorganic Nutrient Management on Rice-Chickpea Production System in Lateritic Soil.
Sangey re-elected PM of Tibetan govt-in-exile
The Tibetan government-in-exile today re-elected Lobsang Sangey as the Prime Minister for a second consecutive term.
48-year-old Sangey defeated his only rival – Speaker of the Tibetan Parliament Pempa Tsering by 9,012 votes.
According to the Chief Election Commissioner of the Tibetan government-in-exile Sonam Chhopel, the names of all the 45 elected members of the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile have also been declared.
Nandu Natekar became first non-cricketer to become a member of CCI’s Legend Club
Badminton ace Nandu Natekar in April 2016 became the first non-Cricketer to be inducted into the Legends Club founded by the late Cricket Club of India (CCI) president Raj Singh Dungarpur.
Natekar was inducted into the club along with 1983 World Cup-winning captain Kapil Dev, who became the sixth cricketer to be inducted in the club.
The two, Nandu and Kapil were inducted into the Club’s legend group after consultation with the Cricket Club of India (CCI) president, Kekoo Nicholson.
Riyad Mahrez Became First African Footballer To Win PFA Player Of The Year
Riyad Mahrez has become the first African footballer to win the Professional Footballers Association’s (PFA) Player of the Year award for the 2015–16 season.
With the award, Mahrez also became the second non-European, after Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez, to grab the award.
Riyad Mahrez is a professional footballer who plays for English club Leicester City and the Algerian national team as a winger. He made his international debut for Algeria in 2014 and represented them at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations.