May 2,2018

Quiz – April 30, 2018
May 1, 2018
Quiz – May 01, 2018
May 2, 2018

Current Affairs for Engineering Service Exam

 Topics list:

  1. National and International Issues on
    1. Economic Development
    2. Social Development
    3. Industrial Development
  2. Energy and Environment
    1. Energy
    2. Environment
  3. Information and Communication Technology
    1. Technology
    2. Application

Topic 1:Economic development

RBI allows FPIs to buy T-bills

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has allowed foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) to invest in treasury bills issued by the central government.

Highlights:

  • The central bank’s move comes close on the heels of foreign portfolio investors being permitted to invest in corporate bonds with minimum residual maturity of above one year.
  • The requirement that investment in securities of any category [G-secs, State Development Loans or, in terms of this circular, corporate bonds] with residual maturity below one year shall not exceed 20% of total investment by an FPI in that category applies, on a continuous basis.
  • All securities with residual maturity of less than one year will be reckoned for the 20% limit, regardless of the maturity of the security at the time of purchase by the FPI
  • According to the circular, if there are investments in securities with less than one year residual maturity as on May 2, and it constitutes more than 20% of the total investment in any category, the FPI will have to bring such share below 20% within a period of six months from the date of the circular

About FPI:

  • Foreign portfolio investment (FPI) consists of securities and other financial assets passively held by foreign investors.
  • It does not provide the investor with direct ownership of financial assets and is relatively liquid depending on the volatility of the market.
  • Foreign portfolio investment differs from foreign direct investment (FDI), in which a domestic company runs a foreign firm, because although FDI allows a company to maintain better control over the firm held abroad, it may face more difficulty selling the firm at a premium price in the future

About T Bills:

  • Treasury Bills are short term (up to one year) borrowing instruments of the Government of India which enable investors to park their short term surplus funds while reducing their market risk.
  • They are auctioned by Reserve Bank of India at regular intervals and issued at a discount to face value.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 1:Social development

DNA profiling Bill

The government informed the Supreme Court that it would introduce the DNA profiling Bill in the Monsoon Session of Parliament

Highlights:

  • The Law Commission of India, in its 271st report, prepared the draft Bill named, The DNA Based Technology (Use and Regulation) Bill, 2017, after examining various judicial pronouncements and constitutional provisions.
  • DNA profiling was indeed used for disaster victim identification, investigation of crimes, identification of missing persons and human remains and for medical research purposes
  • It, however, also flagged that privacy concerns and the ethics involved in this scientific collection of data were very high.
  • The commission said the procedure for DNA profiling, if given statutory recognition, should be done legitimately as per constitutional provisions.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 1:Industrial development

Chennai-Salem highway project

The project to develop a six/eight-lane greenfield highway connecting Chennai and Salem has drawn flak from farmers and environment activists in Tiruvannamalai.

Highlights:

  • The project is under Central government’s scheme to develop economic corridors, inter corridors, feeder corridors and national corridors to improve the efficiency of freight movements in India under ‘Bharatmala Pariyojana’.
  • They claim that a major portion of the corridor that runs through the district will end up destroying both agricultural land and forest areas.
  • It may facilitate mining of iron ore in Kavuthi and Vediyappan hills in Tiruvannamalai

About Bharatmala Pariyojana:

  • Bharatmala Pariyojana  a centrally-sponsored and funded road and highways project of the Government of India
  • Special emphasis will be given on providing connectivity to far-flung border and rural areas including the tribal and backward areas
  • The ambitious umbrella programme will subsume all existing highway projects including the flagship National Highways Development Project (NHDP), launched by the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government in 1998.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 2 : Environment

Taj Mahal turning brown and green

The Taj Mahal was yellow and now turning brown and green.

Highlights:

  • The upkeep of the UNESCO World Heritage site was in a shambles
  • River Yamuna, which used to flow nearby, has dried up.
  • Encroachments and industries have cropped up in the neighbourhood of the white marble mausoleum.
  • Supreme Court  urged the government to get help from international conservation experts, if required, to restore the monument to its pristine glory.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 3 : ICT

New textbooks goes digital

ICT has been integrated into each subject and every lesson will have an ‘ICT Corner’ of  textbooks of Classes I, VI, IX and XI of Tamil Nadu State board schools in the upcoming academic year.

Highlights:

  • The textbooks are a part of the revised syllabi which have been framed by the Tamil Nadu Curriculum Framework Committee.
  • Rhymes and poems with audio renditions that can be accessed online, lessons leading to animated videos and ICT (information and communication technology) exercises that create timelines for history lessons
  • A team of artists and designers, including students from the Government Arts college, is involved in working on the layout, colour and design of the books on the Directorate of Public Information (DPI) campus.
  • Every textbook comes with three categories of QR codes.
  • All the books have a code for the e-book as well as a code leading to ‘digi links,’ which comprises audio and video resources to supplement the lesson.
  • While students of primary classes have a code for evaluation and workbooks, middle school and upwards have QR codes earmarked for ‘assessment’, which when scanned, will lead to additional questions and mock tests.
  • Tamil Nadu Teachers Platform  would give access to teachers from across the State to login and post video lessons, adding to the existing repository.
  • The School Education Department is planning to orient teachers and students across schools in rural as well as urban areas to the new curriculum in the coming academic year.

Read more at: The Hindu

e-inspection software launched by Railways

The Ministry of Railways has launched an e-inspection software, a mobile app and a web portal to eliminate paper-based reporting of various inspections and passenger grievance redress system.

Highlights:

  • The e-inspection module will enable railway officers deployed on footplate (travel in locomotive of trains for short distances), level-crossing, per-departure, on board and station inspections to upload their reports online.
  • The digital platform will serve as a tool for Management Information System to generate periodic reports on various aspects of sections, stations and trains.
  • The e-inspection software and mobile application were developed by the Delhi Division under the direct supervision of the Transformation Cell of the Indian Railways.
  • The relevant data from January 1, 2018 is being fed in the e-module.
  • The overall statistics will help in identifying the weak areas both in train operations and passenger services. By collating the data at the national level, the Railway Board can assess the shortcomings and analyse the means to rectify them while taking policy decisions,

Read more at: The Hindu

The in-flight connectivity in India

The Telecom Commission, which is the highest decision-making body in the Department of Telecommunications (DoT), gave its nod to use mobiles phones and internet services as proposed by regulator TRAI.

Highlights:

  • The department would now work towards creating the licence framework for a separate category of in-flight connectivity (IFC) service providers.
  • These would be charged a licence fee of ₹1 per annum.
  • It was decided to accept the TRAI’s views except that the satellites used for providing services should be the Department of Space-approved satellites and the gateway should be in India
  • The regulator had recommended that the onboard Internet traffic be routed to a satellite gateway on Indian soil as it provides an effective mechanism for legal interception and monitoring.

About TRAI:

  • Telecom Regulatory authority of India was established on 20 February 1997 by an Act of Parliament
  • It consists of a Chairperson and not more than two full-time members and not more than two part-time members.
  • Its main objectives is to provide a fair and transparent environment that promotes a level playing field and facilitates fair competition in the market.
  • TRAI regularly issues orders and directions on various subjects such as tariffs, interconnections, quality of service, Direct To Home (DTH) services and mobile number portability

Read more at: The Hindu

Aadhaar biometric data is 100% secure

India’s cybersecurity chief, Gulshan Rai, who is the Chief Information Security Officer in the Prime Minister’s Office is confident of Aadhaar security

Highlights:

  • Aadhaar are two parts to it: the demographic data (name, age, address, etc.) and the biometric database. When people speak of security, they are referring to the biometric database
  • The central part has the maximum security, and is kept behind several rings of protection
  • Aadhaar has moved to tighten its systems, and weed out misusing companies where there may be any problem
  • The government, consumers and civil society to work closer to ensure a balance between national security and privacy.

Read more at: The Hindu

NCERT issues cyber safety guidelines

  • The National Council of Education Research and Training (NCERT) has sent guidelines defining the role of teachers as well as parents in promoting safe, legal, and ethical use of the Internet by students.
  • Allowing only authorised people to access computer labs, banning use of USB flash drives, blocking pop-ups and keeping a check on appearance of new and unfamiliar icons on computers are among the cybersecurity and safety guidelines issued.

Read more at:The Hindu

Digital Land record receipts

  • Maharashtra became the first State to provide digitally-signed land record receipts (also known as 7/12 receipts)
  • This would check irregularities and bring in transparency in land record management

Read more at:The Hindu

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