Daily GK Update & Current Affairs: 26th September 2017
1. HM Rajnath Singh launches PENCIL Portal:
- The Union Home Minister Mr Rajnath Singh has launched a web portal called ‘PENCIL’ (Platform for Effective Enforcement for No Child Labour) for effective implementation of National Child Labour Project (NCLP).
- PENCIL portal has five components (Child Tracking System, Complaint Corner, State Government, National Child Labour Project, and Convergence) and developed by the Labour Ministry.
- It was felt that an online portal which connects the Centre to the state government, district and to all project societies would provide a mechanism for implementation.
2. Odisha Govt. launches ‘Sampurna Yojana’:
- Odisha state Govt. has launched ‘Sampurna Yojna’ scheme for pregnant women, in Odisha.
- Under this Sishu Abond Matru Mrityuhara Purna Nirakaran Abhijan(Sampurna) scheme, Rs 1,000 will be provided as transportation cost particularly to expectant mothers to facilitate institutional delivery in remote and inaccessible areas in the state.
- The main objective of this scheme is to reduce the death ration of the newborn child and mother mortality rate. Around 7853 villages will be covered from 30 districts of Odisha.
3. Karnataka Government Launches Vision-2025 Project:
- The Karnataka Government Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has launched ‘Vision-2025’ project across the state. It aimed at evolving a draft policy for the development of the state in next seven years by seeking the opinion of the public.
- Under the project, the government would seek public opinion on how they want their dream state to be in the next seven years. The CM has also launched the website ‘www.navakarnataka2025.in’.
4. Government launches Divyang Sarathi Mobile Application:
- The Ministry for Social Justice and Empowerment has launched Divyang Sarathi—The accessible and comprehensive mobile application for easy dissemination of information to ‘Divyangjans’.
- The mobile app aims to empower Divyangjans by providing them easier and convenient access to information pertaining to schemes, scholarships, statutes, institutional support systems, jobs and other crucial information.
- The app is integral part of ICT component of Accessible India Campaign (Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan) launched in December 2015.
- It also compliant with principles of UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities for Universal Access and provisions of Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 which mandates that all information to be made available in accessible form.
5. Bibek Debroy to head PM Modi’s Economic Advisory Council:
- The noted economist from Meghalaya ‘Bibek Debroy’ has been appointed as the first Chairman of the five-member Economic Advisory Council (EAC- PM), which was re-constituted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
- Other members of the Economic Advisory Council are Surjit Bhalla, Rathin Roy, Ashima Goyal and Ratan Watal, who will be working as part-time members of the council.
- The council serves to highlight key economic issues facing the country to the government of India from a neutral viewpoint.
6. Government launches Electronic Negotiable Warehouse Receipt System:
- The Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution launched web portal of Warehousing Development and Regulatory Authority (WDRA) & Electronic Negotiable Warehouse Receipt (e-NWR) System under Digital India mission.
- These initiatives aims at simplifying Warehouse Registration Rules, digitizing entire process of registration, monitoring and surveillance as well as creation and management of NWRs in electronic form through two repositories.
7. Shashi Shanker appointed CMD of ONGC:
- The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC), headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has appointed Shashi Shanker (56-year) as Chairman and Managing Director of ONGC (Oil and Natural Gas Corporation), till 31st March 2021.
- He will take charge from 1st October when the incumbent Dinesh K Sarraf retires.
- Currently, Mr. Shanker is the Director (Technical and Field Services) at ONGC
ONGC board has seven full-time directors including the Chairman and Managing Director.
8. ISRO’s Mars Orbiter Mission Completes 3 Years in Orbit:
- The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) stated that its Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) which has completed three years in its Martian orbit is in good health and continues to work as expected. On the occasion of completion of three years in its Martian orbit released MOM second-year science data from September 24, 2014, to September 23, 2016.
- The 450-crore rupees MOM mission aims at studying the Martian surface and mineral composition. It will also scan its atmosphere for methane which is an indicator of life on Mars.
- ISRO had launched the spacecraft on its nine-month-long odyssey on a homegrown PSLV rocket from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh on November 5, 2013.
9. BDL Signs Contract for Supply of MRSAM to Indian Army:
- Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) has signed a contract with Research Centre Imarat (RCI) for the supply of Medium Range Surface-to-Air Missiles (MRSAM) to Indian Army.
- The contract was signed to facilitate production, deliveries and product support of MRSAM system for the Indian Army.
10. The Ship ‘TARASA’ commissioned into Indian Navy:
- The Ship ‘TARASA’ has been Commissioned into the Indian Navy at Naval Dockyard, Mumbai.
- INS Tarasa (T94) is a patrol vessel of the Car Nicobar-class of Indian Navy and the last ship in the series of four Water Jet Fast Attack Craft.
- An improved variant of the Car Nicobar-class high-speed offshore patrol vessels (OPVs), INS Tarasa is fitted out at the GRSE’s Raja Bagan Dockyard.
- The ship is designed for a maximum speed of 35 knots, with an endurance of nearly 2,000 nautical miles at 12-14 knots.
- The ship is fitted with CRN-91 indigenous 30mm gun with optronic pedestal and powered by the latest 4,000-series MTU engines with advanced machinery control system.
11. Two Indians on Fortune’s List of ‘Most Powerful Women in International Business’:
- Two Indian women have featured on Fortune’s list of Most Powerful Women in business outside the US. Managing Director and CEO of ICICI Bank Chanda Kochhar was ranked fifth and Managing Director and CEO of Axis Bank Shikha Sharma was ranked at 21.
- Group Executive Chairman of Spain’s Banco Santander Ana Botín topped the list. The 50 global businesswomen represent 17 countries and many industries.
- Top three Most Powerful Women in business in the List are- Ana Botin (Spain), Emma Walmsley (UK) and Isabelle Kocher (France).
12. SBI launches chatbot to help customers in banking activities:
- Artificial intelligence banking platform ‘Payjo’ has launched an AI-powered chat assistant for State Bank of India (SBI) to addresses customer enquiries.
- The chat assistant, ‘SBI Intelligent Assistant (SIA)’ will help customers with everyday banking tasks just like a bank representative
- SIA has been set up to handle nearly 10,000 enquiries per second, which is nearly 25% of the queries processed by Google every day.
- SIA will simplify the customer’s lives on multiple customer interaction platforms in partnership with Payjo.
13. SBI lowers min balance to Rs 3,000:
- State Bank of India (SBI) has lowered the minimum average monthly balance (MAB) requirement in a savings account to Rs. 3,000 from Rs. 5,000 & remain 1000 for rural branches and revised downwards penalties for non-adherence.
- The revised MAB requirement and charges will become applicable from next month.
The bank also decided to exempt pensioners, beneficiaries of social benefits from government and minors from the requirement of minimum balance in savings account and treat the metro & urban centers in the same category.
- The bank also revised downwards the penalty for non-maintenance of MAB. Now, the charges at semi-urban and rural centers range from 20 to 40 rupees and at urban and metro centres from 30 to 50 rupees.
14. ADB lowers India growth outlook to 7% for 2017-18:
- According to Asian Development Bank has downgraded India’s growth projection to 7% for the current fiscal while lowering its forecast for the next financial year as well.
- India’s GDP growth is downgraded to 7% in the financial year 2017-18, a 0.4% point drop from the April forecast. In the financial year 2018-19, the forecast is adjusted down to 7.4%, from 7.6%.
15. Lakshmanan Wins 5,000m gold in Athletics Nationals:
- Reigning Asian champion Govindan Lakshmanan of Services cruised to victory in the men’s 5000-metre race on the opening day of the 57th National Open Athletics Championships at the Nehru Stadium in Chennai.
- Lakshmanan has recently won gold in the 3,000m event at the Asian Indoor Games in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.