Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 30 August 2019


Current Affairs for IAS Exams - 30 August 2019


::NATIONAL::

PM launches fit India movement and opens AYUSH centres

  •  Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said AYUSH and Yoga are strong pillars of 'Fit India' movement.
  •  He said Mahatma Gandhi used to believe that Naturopathy is a way of living. The Prime Minister said India has vast and ancient texts highlighting the importance of Ayurveda and Yoga.
  •  Giving away Yoga Awards to the winners for Outstanding Contribution for Promotion and Development of Yoga in New Delhi, Mr Modi said he makes full use of Yoga and Ayurveda in his life. He said that attending a program related to Ayush and Yoga on the very next day of launch of Fit India is a strange coincidence.
  •  During the ceremony, Mr Modi released 12 commemorative postal stamps to honour eminent scholars, practitioners and Great Master Healers of AYUSH Systems. These commemorative postal stamps highlight the great work and acknowledge the achievements of the Great Master Healers of AYUSH Systems.
  •  He also launched ten AYUSH Health and Wellness Centres located in Haryana. This is in line with Ministry of AYUSH’s commitment to make 12 thousand 500 AYUSH Health and Wellness Centres functional in next three years.
  •  The main focus of these centres will be empowering the community for self care by imbibing AYUSH based healthy food and lifestyle, social behaviour and use of medicinal plants for primary health care.

Centre releases funds to increase green cover

  •  In a major step towards increasing afforestation in the country, Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar has handed over forty seven thousand crore rupees from Compensatory Afforestation Fund to various states.
  •  In a media briefing in the New Delhi, Mr Javadekar appealed to the states that the budget for afforestation must be increased as this is the investment for future. He said that the funds will be utilized as per the provisions of the Compensatory Afforestation Fund (CAF) Act and rules.
  •  The Minister said that the fund will be utilized for the compensatory afforestation, catchment area treatment, wildlife management, natural regeneration, forest fire prevention, soil and moisture conservation, improvement of wildlife habitat.
  •  He further said that monitoring of the implementation of the efforts pertaining to afforestation will be done with the help of the technology like geo- tagging and video shooting.

::ECONOMY::

Coal market to become competitive post 100%FDI move

  •  Coal and Mines Minister Pralhad Joshi has said that the decision of 100 per cent Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) under automatic route for coal mining activities is the biggest reform by Modi Government.
  •  He said, this will help provide power to all 24x7. In a statement, Mr Joshi said, 100 per cent FDI is the biggest reform and the influx of international players will create an efficient and competitive coal market in India. It is expected to bring state of the art coal mining technology to the country which will help in environmentally sustainable mining.
  •  The Minister said, this decision will also create direct and indirect employment in coal bearing areas and will have a positive impact in the economic development of these regions.
  •  He said the reform is likely to help the coal bearing states get more revenue and bring in more players to create an efficient and competitive coal market.
  •  Mr Joshi reiterated that this step will also lead to energy security of the country as 70 per cent of India’s electricity is generated from thermal power plants.

RBI report claims bank frauds have jumped 15% in 2019-19

  •  Bank frauds saw a whopping 73.8% jump in value in 2018-19 as compared to the previous year. In terms of number of cases, it was up 15%, the RBI’s annual report said.
  •  Banks had taken 55 months, on an average, to report large frauds. The overall average lag between the date of occurrence and its detection by banks was 22 months, the RBI report said.
  •  Among bank groups, public sector banks (PSBs), which constitute the largest market share in bank lending, have accounted for the bulk of frauds reported in 2018-19. These were followed by private sector banks and foreign banks.
  •  While the total number of counterfeit notes detected had fallen in 2018-19 to 3,17,384 pieces from 5,22,783 pieces in the previous years, what’s interesting is that 717 such notes of ₹1,000 denomination had been detected
  •  The ₹1,000 notes were withdrawn from circulation on November 8, 2016. The number of ₹2,000 counterfeit notes detected also increased in 2018-19 to 21,847 pieces from 17,929 pieces, the data showed.
  •  There was also a sharp increase in the new ₹500 notes category, with 21,865 counterfeit notes detected as compared to 9,892 in the previous year.

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::INTERNATIONAL::

India announces stand on South china sea

  •  India has said it has an abiding interest in the peace and stability in the South China sea region as South China sea is part of the global commons.
  •  Talking to media in New Delhi, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said India firmly stands for the freedom of navigation and over-flight and unimpeded lawful commerce, in the international waters, in accordance with international laws.
  •  He said, India also believes that any differences must be resolved peacefully by respecting the legal and diplomatic processes, and without resorting to threat or use of force.
  •  Meanwhile Britain, Germany and France have expressed concern over the tense situation in the South China Sea, a day after US Navy sailed a warship within 12 nautical miles of two contested islands in the region.
  •  In a joint statement from the three countries released yesterday by the UK Foreign Ministry said they are concerned about the situation in the South China Sea which could lead to insecurity and instability in the region. The trio further called on the coastal states of the region to take measures that reduce tensions and contribute to maintaining and promoting peace, security, stability and safety in the region.

India-Nepal conducts training programme on EXIM bank guidelines

  •  The Embassy of India in Nepal and National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) of Nepal organized a two-day training programme in Kathmandu on the Export-Import (EXIM) Bank of India’s Line of Credit guidelines and procedures.
  •  Senior experts from the EXIM Bank of India conducted the training programme which was attended by 27 officials from Government of Nepal.
  •  The first day of the training covered a general introduction to the EXIM Bank of India’s Line of Credit (LOC) modality including project identification, pre-qualification and tendering process, evaluation of tender documents, empanelment process, project implementation and monitoring.
  •  The training programme, which concluded yesterday, was organized as part of a bilateral understanding reached between Government of Nepal and Government of India during the 7th Line of Credit (LOC) Review Meeting held in June 2019 in India.
  •  The two sides also agreed to collaborate on future capacity building efforts of the Government of Nepal officials who would be working on the Government of India’s Line of Credit supported projects.

::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::

Chandrayaan-2 orbiter sends pictures of moon’s surface

  •  Chandrayaan-2’s orbiter or mother spacecraft has zeroed in on a crater on the moon named after 20th century’s acclaimed radio physicist Sisir Kumar Mitra. Images of the crater are among the second set of pictures of the northern craters sent by the orbiter.
  •  The Mitra crater is on the edge of another crater. The pictures were taken by the Terrain Mapping Camera-2 around 2. 15 p.m. on August 23. The orbiter was then around 4,300 km from the moon, the Indian Space Research Organisation said in its update on Monday.
  •  At 25 degrees Kelvin (minus 248 degrees Celsius), the northern polar region is believed to be one of the coldest spots in the solar system.
  •  The first set of pictures of August 21 came from the camera on the lander which is riding atop the orbiter. The lander is set to separate from the orbiter on September 2 in preparation for its landing on the moon on September 7.
  •  Prof. Mitra (1890-1963) also lends his name to the S. K. Mitra Centre for Research in Space Environment of the University of Calcutta.

::SPORTS::

Abhishek verma wins gold at shooting world cup

  •  In shooting, Abhishek Verma won the gold medal and Saurabh Chaudhary the bronze, in a dominant display by Indian shooters in the men's 10m air pistol event of the World Cup at Rio de Janeiro. Verma shot 244.2 in the eight-man finals, while Chaudhary's 221.9 was good enough to get him the bronze.
  •  India have already exhausted the maximum Olympic quotas available per country in this event, with both Verma and Chaudhary securing the quotas in the previous qualifying events.
  •  Now, India's quota holders are Sanjeev Rajput, Anjum Moudgil, Apurvi Chandela, Saurabh Chaudhary, Abhishek Verma, Divyansh Singh Panwar, Rahi Sarnobat and Manu Bhaker.

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