Daily Current Affairs 3rd May, 2017

Daily Current Affairs 3rd May, 2017


NATIONAL

BAT Repeats Brutality by Beheading Two Indian Soldiers

  • Pakistan’s ‘border action team’ (BAT) has beheaded two Indian soldiers by sneaking 200 metres into Indian Territory in the Krishna Ghati sector in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir. During the raid, bodies of Naib Subedar Paramjit Singh (22 Sikh Regiment) and head constable Prem Sagar (200 BSF Battalion) were left mutilated.
  • This is the third such barbaric episode since the conduct of ‘surgical strikes’ against terror launch pads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) on September 29. In the same Krishna Ghati sector, BAT had beheaded Lance Naik Hemraj and severed the head of Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh of 13 Rajputana Rifles in 2013.
  • India has strongly condemned this inhuman act and the Army has promised appropriate revenge at a place and time of its choice. Since january, 65 ceasefire violations have already been recorded along the LoC.

World’s Highest Railway Bridge to Come up Over Chenab River

  • World’s highest railway bridge which will be 35 metres taller than the Eiffel Tower is to come up over the Chenab River in Jammu and Kashmir at a cost of around Rs. 1,100 crore in around two years from now.
  • The bridge will connect Bakkal (Katra) and Kauri (Srinagar). The bridge will be a part of the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla rail link project.
  • Once completed, the bridge will be an engineering marvel. The project is expected to be completed by 2019. After completion of the bridge it will surpass the record of the Beipan river Shuibai railway bridge (275 m) in China.
  • The bridge is expected to contribute to the economic development of the state and improve its accessibility.
  • The new railway bridge will be of an arch-shaped structure in hostile terrain. It will be constructed using over 24,000 tonnes of steel and will rise 359 m above the river bed.
  • Steel has been chosen as the construction material as it would be cheap and would be able to resist temperatures of -20 degrees Celsius and wind speeds of above 250 kmph.
  • The design of the bridge will be such that it will be able to withstand wind speed of up to 260 kmph.

“Southern Sojourn” and “Southern Jewels”

  • The Indian Railway PSU, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Ltd (IRCTC) has decided to start two new circuits of their flagship luxury train Maharajas’ Express, this year.
  • These two new trips have been named as “Southern Sojourn” and “Southern Jewels” which will cover prominent destinations in West and South India.
  • The Southern Sojourn will cover Goa, Hampi, Mysore, Ernakulam, Kumarakom and Trivandrum.
  • The Southern Jewels will cover Chettinad, Mahabalipuram, Mysore, Hampi and Goa.

ECONOMY, BANKING AND FINANCE

$770 billion Worth of Black Money entered into India during 2005-2014: GFI

  • US-based think tank Global Financial Integrity (GFI) in its report titled ‘Illicit Financial Flows to and from Developing Countries: 2005-2014’, has estimated that $770 billion worth of black money entered India during 2005-2014.
  • During the same time period, the think tank estimates the exit of $165 billion in illicit money out of the country. It translates into 3{be19e8fcc7081f751eba9e03bd22e904e5cf3e86733381e655a03b1ab7839769} of India’s total trade of $5500.744 billion between the time period 2005-2014.
  • This is the first global study that has placed equal emphasis on illicit outflows and inflows. As per the report, in 2014 alone, $101 billion black money entered India while USD 23 billion exited. The report has suggested that the governments should set up public registries of verified beneficial ownership information on all legal entities to check the menace of black money.
  • It has also asked all the banks to check for the true beneficial owner of any account.

India’s Current Sovereign Ratings

  • Fitch, in its latest rating review, has affirmed India’s sovereign rating at BBB-, which is the lowest investment grade rating.
  • Despite pressure from the government and corporate for an upgrade in the rating, Fitch has kept its sovereign rating on India unchanged.
  • Although Fitch acknowledged India’s strong growth and recent economic reforms, it has a given a BBB- rating owing to the weak state of the government’s finances. According to the rating agency, India’s general government debt burden was 67.9{be19e8fcc7081f751eba9e03bd22e904e5cf3e86733381e655a03b1ab7839769} of GDP whereas the ‘BBB’ median is 40.9{be19e8fcc7081f751eba9e03bd22e904e5cf3e86733381e655a03b1ab7839769}.
  • Also, Fitch has estimated a wide fiscal balance of -6.6{be19e8fcc7081f751eba9e03bd22e904e5cf3e86733381e655a03b1ab7839769} of GDP for FY17.
  • Similarly, India’s long-term foreign and local-currency issuer default ratings were also fixed at ‘BBB-’.
  • Fitch expects a strong medium-term growth outlook as well as favourable external balances with a weak fiscal position and difficult business environment.
  • However, it expects the business environment to gradually improve with the implementation of the government’s structural reform agenda.
  • Fitch has said that economy of the country is less developed on a number of structural metrics. In India, the average per capita GDP remains low at $1,714, whereas the ‘BBB’ range median is $9,701.
  • It has also observed that the governance standards of India also remain weak as evident from the World Bank governance indicator for India at 46th percentile when compared to the ‘BBB’ median of 58th percentile.

Madhya Pradesh becomes First State to Shift Financial Year to Jan-Dec Format

  • Madhya Pradesh has become the first state in the country to shift its financial year from the present April-March cycle to January-December.
  • The state’s budget session for the next financial year would be held in December-January. Hence, the state government plans to finish the current budget proceedings by December this year.
  • The decision of the Madhya Pradesh state government comes in the backdrop of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s suggestion of shifting the fiscal year to January-December period during NITI Aayog governing council meeting on April 23 held at New Delhi. He had reasoned that as agricultural income is exceedingly important, budgets need to be prepared immediately after the receipt of agricultural incomes for the year.

GOVT SCHEME

Department of Telecom launches ‘Tarang Sanchar’ portal

  • Manoj Sinha, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Communications and Minister of State for Railways, formally launched the ‘Tarang Sanchar portal’ in an event organized at New Delhi.
  • The web portal is for Information sharing on Mobile Towers and EMF Emission Compliances. The portal aims to generate confidence among the public about the effectiveness of the EMF compliance process in India.
  • Additionally, any person can request for EMF emission measurement at a location by paying a fee of Rs 4000 online. It is am an important move for Prime Minister’s vision of Digital India.

DEFENCE

Indian Army Test-Fires Advanced Version of Brahmos Cruise Missile

  • Indian Army has successfully test-fired advanced Block-III version of Brahmos cruise missile in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
  • During the test, the Brahmos cruise missile had successfully hit the land-based target with desired precision in a top attack configuration demonstrating its high level and complex manoeuvring and its unmatched lethality of hitting the target with at most precision.
  • Recently, on April 22, the Indian Navy had successfully carried out its first test-firing of the sea-to-land attack version of Brahmos.

EVENTS

4th National Standards Conclave held in New Delhi

  • Department of Commerce, Government of India in collaboration with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) and the National Accreditation Board for Certification Bodies (NABCB) has organized the 4th National Standards Conclave on 1-2 May 2017 at New Delhi.
  • The objective of the two-day Conclave was to bring awareness and prepare Industries, Central Government Ministries, State Governments, regulatory/standards-setting and conformity assessment bodies on the growing importance of “Standards” in the changing scenario of global trade.

AWARDS

Shabana Azmi starrer ‘The Black Prince’ awarded at film fest in Houston

  • Hollywood film The Black Prince, featuring singer-poet Satinder Sartaaj and veteran actress Shabana Azmi, was awarded the Special Jury Remi Award at the 50th annual Worldfest-Houston International Film Festival (WHIFF).
  • The film is a historic biopic on the poignant life story of the last king of Punjab – Maharajah Duleep Singh.
  • The film is Directed by Kavi Raj.

The 44th Annual Daytime EMMY AWARDS 2017 announced

  • The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) has announced the winners of the 44th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards held in California, USA.
  • The NATAS is a professional service organization dedicated to the advancement of the arts and sciences of television and the promotion of creative leadership for artistic, educational and technical achievements within the television industry.

Here is the list of winners-

  • Outstanding morning program- Good Morning America (ABC)
  • Outstanding supporting actor in a drama series- Steve Burton, The Young and the Restless (CBS)
  • Outstanding supporting actress in a drama series- Kate Mansi, Days of Our Lives (CBS)
  • Outstanding game show- Jeopardy
  • Outstanding informative talk show- The Dr. Oz Show (SYNDICATED)
  • Outstanding entertainment news program- Entertainment Tonight (CBS)
  • Outstanding drama series- General Hospital (ABC)
  • Outstanding culinary program- Eat the World with Emeril Lagasse (Amazon)

IMPORTANT DAYS

Ganga Cleanliness Pledge Day: May 02

  • The National Mission for Clean Ganga was observe ‘Ganga Cleanliness Pledge Day’ on May 2 at various places in the river’s basin states to spread awareness and ensure public participation for the programme.
  • The events was organised in Uttar Pradesh’s Kanpur, Allahabad, Varanasi, Hardoi, Bithoor and Vidhur Kuti; Uttarakhand’s Srinagar and Devprayag; Patna and Bhagalpur in Bihar; Sahibganj (Jharkhand) and Kolkata (West Bengal).

SPORTS

Current ICC T-20 Rankings

  • In the recently updated ICC T20 International team rankings, India has been placed at the 4th position behind second placed England and third placed Pakistan. India has earned 118 points whereas England and Pakistan have earned 121 points each.
  • New-Zealand has topped the table with 125 points. South Africa has managed to secure the fifth place followed by countries like Australia (6th), West Indies (7th), Sri Lanka (8th), Afghanistan (9th) and Bangladesh (10th).
  • The rankings assume significance in the light of 2020 World T20. World T20 tournament will be hosted by the Australia.
  • Apart from Australia, nine other top-ranked teams as on December 31, 2018 will be automatically qualified for the tournament.
  • The bottom eight countries will join regional qualifiers in the 2019 World T20 Qualifier. Six countries from the qualifier will be qualified to join the 16-team World T20 pool.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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