Current Affair of 23-24 April 2018, Exam View.
E-governance: Cabinet approves restructured Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) recently approved a restructured Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan (RGSA) aimed at building infrastructure and stepping up initiatives for e-governance.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the scheme on National Panchayati Raj Day on April 24(Today).
- The scheme will focus on training, building infrastructure, stepping up initiatives for e-governance under the e-Panchayat Mission Mode Project (MMP).
- The scheme will extend to all states and Union Territories and will also include institutions of rural local government in non-Part IX areas, where panchayats do not exist.
- The sharing ratio for the state components will be 60:40 barring the Northeast and hilly states where it will be 90:10
- For UTs, the central share will be 100 per cent.
- As part of this initiative, a mobile application — ActionSoft — has been developed for field-level reporting and monitoring of physical progress of the works undertaken by the panchayats.
- This mobile application captures the geographical coordinates and photo of each asset at different stages of work for the activities included under the Gram Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP). It will be launched on April 24
Sunderban Reserve Forest likely to get Ramsar site status
The Sunderban Reserve Forest, spread of 4,260 sq. km. with 2,114 sq. km. of mangrove forests and creeks, is likely to be declared a Ramsar Site soon. Earlier this week, the West Bengal government gave its approval to the State Forest Department to apply for recognition under the Ramsar Convention.
The Indian Sunderbans, with 2,114 sq. km. of mangrove forests, comprise almost 43% of the mangrove cover in the country according to a 2017 Forest Survey of India report. Other than the forests, home to about 100 Royal Bengal tigers, the creeks and river systems of the Sunderbans are also part of the reserve forest and once conferred a Ramsar site status, it will be the largest protected wetland in the country.
There are currently 26 sites in India recognised as Ramsar wetland sites of international importance, including the East Kolkata Wetlands also in West Bengal.
Government approved death penalty for child rapists
In response to the outrage over recent cases of rapes in Kathua and Unnao the Union Cabinet recenlty approved the promulgation of an Ordinance to provide death penalty for rapists of girls below 12 years, according to a senior government official.
The Criminal Law (Amendment) Ordinance provides for stringent punishment of a jail term of minimum 20 years or life imprisonment or death for rape of a girl under 12 years.
An official of the Ministry of Women and Child Development said amendments would be made to the Indian Penal Code, the Criminal Procedure Code, the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and the Indian Evidence Act.
As per the ordinance, for the crime of rape of a girl under 16 years, minimum punishment has been increased from 10 years to 20 years, which can be extended to imprisonment for the rest of life. Minimum punishment for rape of women has also been increased from rigorous imprisonment of 7 years to 10 years, which can be extended to life imprisonment.
It provides for speedy investigation and trial, which must be completed in two months. There will be no provision for anticipatory bail for a person accused of rape or gang rape of a girl under 16 years.
Manipur’s Karang – First cashless island of the country
Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently honoured bureaucrats for making Manipur’s Karang the first cashless island of the country, and implementing the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and other priority initiatives of the Centre.
Modi awarded civil servants for smooth implementation of four priority programmes — Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana, Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban and Rural), Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Grameen Kaushalya Yojana, and for promoting digital payments.
Digambarpur of West Bengal: India’s best Gram Panchayat
West Bengal has once again topped in the country with Digambarpur Gram Panchayat (GP) bagging the Centre’s award for the best GP in the country.
A survey was conducted to find out the best Gram Panchayat in the country and in a letter to the state government the Ministry of Panchayati Raj has stated that Digambarpur GP at Patharpratima block in South 24-Parganas has come up as the best out of 2.5 lakh Gram Panchayats in the country.
Naidu rejects impeachment notice against CJI
Rajya Sabha chairman Venkaiah Naidu today rejected the Congress-led opposition parties’ notice to remove the chief justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra saying it lacked substantial merit.
Having considered the material contained in the notice of motion and reflected upon the inputs received in my interaction with legal luminaries and constitutional experts, I am of the firm opinion that the notice of the motion does not deserve to be admitted. Accordingly I refuse to admit notice of motion.
“I have applied my mind to all five charges made out in impeachment motion and examined all annexed documents. All facts as stated in motion don’t make out a case which can lead any reasonable mind to conclude that CJI on these facts can be ever held guilty of misbehavior,” said Naidu further, reported ANI.
India’s GDP expected to reach $5 trn by 2025: Economic Affairs secretary
India is poised to remain the fastest-growing large economy in the world and its GDP is expected to reach $5 trillion by 2025 as the economic reforms adopted in the last few years have started to bear fruit, a top Indian official has told the World Bank.
India is poised to remain as the fastest growing large economy in the world. In 2018, we expect India to grow at over 7.4 per cent
In the field of digitisation, India has completed the ambitious task of connecting 100,000 gram panchayats through high speed optical fibre network under phase-I of the Bharat Net project,” he said, adding that it has enabled broadband access to over 200 million Indians living in about 250,000 villages.
India’s GDP is expected to reach a volume of $5 trillion by FY2025 by leveraging on digitisation, globalisation, favourable demographics and structural reforms,
Donald Trump hails ‘big progress’ as Kim Jong Un vows to halt nuclear tests
US President Donald Trump hailed “big progress” as North Korean leader Kim Jong Un pledged to halt nuclear testing, a largely symbolic gesture that appeared aimed at softening the ground for talks between the two leaders.
Kim told a ruling party meeting in Pyongyang on Friday his regime would suspend tests of atomic bombs and intercontinental ballistic missiles after achieving its goal of building a nuclear arsenal, the official Korean Central News Agency reported.
Trump called Kim’s statement “very good news for North Korea and the World.” “Big progress!” Trump said in a tweet. “Look forward to our Summit.” Later, he noted that North Korea would “shut down a nuclear test site in the country’s Northern Side to prove the vow to suspend nuclear tests.” A spokesman for Moon called Kim’s moves a positive sign.
Iran bans banks from using cryptocurrencies
Iran has banned the use of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies by its banks and financial institutions.
“The use of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in all the country’s monetary and financial centers was banned,” an April 23 statement by the central bank said.
The ban was necessary since “all cryptocurrencies have the capacity to be turned into a means for money-laundering and financing terrorism and in general can be turned into a means for transferring criminals’ money,” bank added.
Canada to host the world’s female foreign ministers
Canada will host the world’s small but growing band of female foreign ministers for talks ahead of this year’s UN General Assembly, Canada’s Chrystia Freeland announced Sunday.
Freeland opened a meeting in Toronto of G7 foreign ministers with a session, co-hosted by EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Federica Mogherini, dedicated to her women counterparts.
Isro to launch slew of military satellites
Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) is gearing up to launch a slew of important satellites in the coming months.
Isro will launch a dedicated satellite, Gsat-7A, for the Indian Air Force (IAF) in September and an advanced remote sensing satellite, Risat-2A, for surveillance purpose by the end of the year.
Gsat-7A, which will be lifted by a GSLV Mk II rocket, will enable the IAF to interlink different ground radar stations, airbases and AWACS aircraft. It will also boost the IAF’s network-centric warfare capabilities and enhance its global operations.
World Bank group approves massive USD 13 billion increase in paid-in capital
In a major development, the World Bank Group has endorsed an ambitious package of measures that include a USD 13 billion increase in paid-in capital. The decision came late on Saturday along with a series of internal reforms, and a set of policy measures that greatly strengthen the global poverty fighting institution’s ability to scale up resources and deliver on its mission in areas of the world that need the most assistance.
World Bank President Jim Yong Kim hailed the decision as “historic” as International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde welcomed the move. The package approved by the Development Committee of the Board of Governors consists of USD 7.5 billion paid-in capital for International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and USD 5.5 billion paid-in capital for International Finance Commission (IFC), through both general and selective capital increases
Paytm Payments Bank registers 100M KYC wallets
Paytm Payments Bank announced on Monday that it now has over 100 million KYC wallets, against the constant campaigning done by bank about the benefits of the Know Your Customer (KYC) system.
After the successful response received, the bank has introduced several options that include Paytm KYC centers and ‘Paytm-Ka-ATM’ outlets to offer more localised support. Customers can locate these through the ‘Nearby’ section on the Paytm app. KYC’ed customers also have a choice to open a zero-balance account with Paytm Payments Bank.
India bags 10 gold medals in South Asian Judo C’ships
India has bagged a total of 10 gold medals in the ongoing South Asian Judo Championship
Out of the total 14 gold medals, India won 7 gold medals contested under women-single categories and the remaining 3 under men-single categories.
Nepal and Pakistan won two gold medals each.
Sri Lanka won three gold and five bronze medals followed by Bangladesh with two silver and two bronze medals.
Bhutan was left with just one bronze medal.
Earth Day – 22 March
Leaders across India, world urge people to save the planet through sustainable lifestyle
People around the globe also came together to celebrate the Earth Day.
- First Earth Day was celebrated in 1970 by US.
- April 22 was chosen as Earth Day by Gaylord Nelson, the founder of Earth Day.
- Earth Day 2018 theme is ‘End Plastic Pollution’.
World Book Day – 23 March
- World Book Day, also known as World Book And Copyright Day.
- It is being organised by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) since 1995
- This day also marks the death anniversary of William Shakespeare.
- The theme of 2018 is ‘Reading, it’s my right!’