Daily Current Affairs 17 May 2018

Daily Current Affairs 17 May 2018
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# Record production of Foodgrain in 2017-2018

Aided by a normal monsoon last year, India’s production of foodgrains touched a record 279.5 million tonnes in 2017-18.This was estimated in the third advance estimate of crop production released by the Agriculture Ministry on 16th May.The higher year-on-year food production is due to a larger harvest of rice and a record crop of pulses.

# MoU between India & Morocco in legal field

The Union Cabinet has given its ex-post facto approval for signing of the MoU for cooperation in the legal field between India and Morocco.The MoU will allow both the countries to share their experience and expertise in the field of law and legislation.The MoU will give an opportunity to the Lawyers, Law Officers and law students to discuss issues in the field of law and justice.

# Blockchain-based trade finance network

Infosys has formed a blockchain-based trade finance network with 7 private-sector banks, to increase security and efficiency in the banking sector.Blockchain allows all stages of transactions to be securely shared between network members, as opposed to each bank working independently.Lenders currently testing its trade finance network are ICICI, Axis and Yes Bank among others.

# BSE is first to get US SEC recognition

The BSE has received the recognition certificate of ‘Designated Offshore Securities Market’ (DOSM) from the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).This will help in the sale of securities to US investors through the BSE platform without registration of such securities with the US SEC.The BSE becomes the first bourse in India to receive the DOSM recognition .

# New method to solve PSU disputes

Cabinet has approved a mechanism within the government for speedy resolution of commercial disputes of central public sector enterprises without cases going to courts.A new two-tier mechanism will be put in place of the existing Permanent Machinery of Arbitration mechanism to resolve such commercial disputes.Cabinet decision is based on the recommendations of the Committee of Secretaries.

# Mangaluru is the best in waste management

The Union government has selected Mangaluru as “India’s best city in solid waste management”.It was selected under the categories of cities having a population between three lakh and 10 lakh under Swachhata Survekshan 2018.The survey by the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs assessed 4,203 urban local bodies under the aegis of the Swachh Bharat Mission (Urban).

# Delhi to become the most populous city

According to new United Nations estimates, Delhi is projected to become the most populous city in the world around 2028.Tokyo is the world’s largest city with an agglomeration of 37 million inhabitants, followed by New Delhi with 29 million, Shanghai with 26 million.The projected population size of New Delhi in 2028 is about 37.2 million, surpassing Tokyo’s 36.8 million.

# NPCIL won Russian award for ‘Atom on Wheels’

Nuclear Power Corp of India has won the top award in public communication category at the 10th anniversary of international event ATOMEXPO.NPCIL won the award for its “Atom on Wheels” campaign started in 2016 to spread awareness in rural areas about the benefits of nuclear energy.The campaign mounted on wheels covered 6 lakh rural population in 6 states with material on nuclear technology

# Aadhaar not mandatory for getting pension

The government clarified that Aadhaar has not been made mandatory for getting pension for government employees.The government said that Aadhaar is an additional facility to enable the use of technology for submission of life certificate without visiting banks.There are about 48.41 lakh Central Government employees and 61.17 lakh pensioners.

# Gujarat Governor given additional charge of MP

Gujarat Governor Om Prakash Kohli was given the additional charge of Madhya Pradesh while the state’s Governor Anandiben Patel is on leave.Patel was appointed Madhya Pradesh Governor in January after she resigned as Gujarat’s Chief Minister in 2016 citing her 75-year age.She had replaced Kohli who had been handling the additional charge of Madhya Pradesh from August 2016.

# Agreement between India, Brunei approved

Union Cabinet has approved signing and ratification of the agreement between India and Brunei Darussalam for the exchange of information and assistance in the collection with respect to taxes.The agreement will help curb tax evasion and tax avoidance.It will also enable assistance in the collection of tax revenue claims between both countries.

# Cabinet okays Micro Irrigation fund

Union Cabinet has approved corpus of Rs 5,000 crore for setting up of a dedicated “Micro Irrigation Fund” with NABARD under Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana.The fund seeks to provide states financial assistance on concessional rate of interest to promote micro-irrigation.The lending rate under MIF has been proposed at 3% lower than the cost of raising the fund by NABARD.

# Yeddyurappa takes oath as the CM of Karnataka

BS Yeddyurappa of Bharatiya Janata Party took oath as the Chief Minister of Karnataka.This comes after the Supreme Court refused to stay state Governor Vajubhai Vala’s decision to invite BJP, which fell short of the majority mark, to form the government.Yeddyurappa has been given 15 days to prove BJP’s majority.

# V.K. Singh’s surprise visit to North Korea

Minister of State for External Affairs General V.K. Singh has become the first Indian minister to visit North Korea in 20 years.The MoS highlighted the threat posed to India from nuclear proliferation.India and North Korea also decided to explore possibilities of cooperation in areas of mutual interest including vocational education, agriculture, pharmaceuticals and Yoga.

# Prabhu launched Intellectual Property mascot

Minister of Commerce & Industry Suresh Prabhu launched the Intellectual Property mascot – IP Nani at the conference on National Intellectual Property Rights Policy.The mascot will spread awareness about the importance of Intellectual Property Rights among people, especially children.The character is also in line with World Intellectual Property Organization’s campaign for the World IP Day.

# India’s first solar powered railway station

Guwahati now has India’s first railway station run by solar power.Around 2352 solar modules with a capacity of generating 700 kwp has been set up over the roof of the Guwahati railway station.The solar-powered station is aimed at reducing carbon-footprint as well as cut down power costs drastically.The solar power plant will save Rs 67 lakh worth of electricity.

# Cabinet approves National Biofuel Policy

Cabinet has approved National Policy on Biofuels which allows doping of ethanol produced from damaged foodgrains, rotten potatoes, corn & sugar beet with petrol.The Policy categorizes biofuels as 1stGeneration, which produces bio-ethanol from molasses & bio-diesel from non-edible oilseeds.2nd Generation ethanol can be produced from municipal solid waste & 3rd Generation fuels like bio-CNG

# Government approved to set up AIIMS at Deoghar

The Centre has approved setting up of an All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Deoghar in Jharkhand.The institute will have residential complexes and allied facilities and services on the lines of AIIMS, New Delhi.The AIIMS at Deoghar will have 20 speciality/super speciality departments, including 15 operation theatres.

# Guatemala opened its embassy in Jerusalem

Guatemala has opened its embassy in Jerusalem, following in the footsteps of the United States, which recently inaugurated its embassy in the city.Guatemala, the second country to recognise Israel as a state in 1948, has had a long history of military cooperation with Israel.All embassies to Israel were situated in the commercial capital Tel Aviv, before US and Guatemalan embassies moved.

# Indore is the cleanest city in India

According to Swachh Survekshan 2018 survey, Indore has bagged the title of the cleanest city in India, followed by Bhopal & Chandigarh.Indore was the cleanest city last year as well but that survey was conducted only for around 430 cities. This time it was conducted for around 4200 cities.Jharkhand was adjudged the best-performing state in the survey followed by Maharashtra & Chhattisgarh.

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