April 22,2018

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April 21, 2018
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April 22, 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

Fugitive Economic Offenders Ordinance

The Union Cabinet on Saturday approved the promulgation of the Fugitive Economic Offenders Ordinance, 2018, which would empower the government to seize the domestic assets of those deemed by a court to be fugitive economic offenders.


  • The ordinance would lay down the measures to empower Indian authorities to attach and confiscate proceeds of crime associated with economic offenders and the properties of the economic offenders and thereby deter economic offenders from evading the process of Indian law by remaining outside the jurisdiction of Indian courts
  • The ordinance is expected to re-establish the rule of law with respect to the fugitive economic offenders as they would be forced to return to India to face trial for scheduled offences
  • This would also help the banks and other financial institutions to achieve higher recovery from financial defaults committed by such fugitive economic offenders, improving the financial health of such institutions
  • The ordinance has a provision for a ‘Special Court’ under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002, to declare a person as a Fugitive Economic Offender

Fugitive Economic Offender:

  • A Fugitive Economic Offender is a person against whom an arrest warrant has been issued in respect of a scheduled offence and who has left India so as to avoid criminal prosecution, or being abroad, refuses to return to India to face criminal prosecution
  • A scheduled offence refers to a list of economic offences contained in the Schedule to this ordinance

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 1:Social development

Restructured Scheme of Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs gave its approval for restructured Centrally Sponsored Scheme of Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan (RGSA).


  • The Scheme will be implemented during the period from 01.04.2018 to 31.03.2022
  • This scheme will extend to all States and UTs of the Country and will also include institutions of rural local government in non-Part IX areas, where Panchayats do not exist
  • The scheme will have both Central Component – National Level activities including “National Plan of Technical Assistance”, “Mission Mode project on e-Panchayat”, “Incentivization of Panchayats” and State component – Capacity Building of Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs)
  • The Central Component will be fully funded by the Government of India. However, Centre:State funding pattern for State Component will be 60:40 for all States, except North East and Hill States where Centre:State funding pattern will be 90:10.  For all Union Territories (UTs) (with and without legislatures), the Central share will be 100%.
  • The Central Component will be fully funded by the Government of India. However, Centre:State funding pattern for State Component will be 60:40 for all States, except North East and Hill States where Centre:State funding pattern will be 90:10.  For all Union Territories (UTs) (with and without legislatures), the Central share will be 100%.

About Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan (RGSA):

The Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan will strengthen the Panchayati Raj system across the country and address critical gaps that constrain its success.

RGSA seeks to:

  • Enhance capacities and effectiveness of Panchayats and the Gram Sabhas
  • Enable democratic decision-making and accountability in Panchayats and promote people’s participation;
  • Strengthen the institutional structure for knowledge creation and capacity building of Panchayats;
  • Promote devolution of powers and responsibilities to Panchayats according to the spirit of the Constitution and The Provisions of the Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act
  • Strengthen Gram Sabhas to function effectively as the basic forum of peoples participation, transparency and accountability within the Panchayat system;
  • Create and strengthen democratic local self-government in areas where Panchayats do not exist;
  • Strengthen the constitutionally mandated framework on which Panchayats are founded.

Read more at: PIB

Death for rape of girls under 12 years

Union Cabinet approved the promulgation of an Ordinance to provide death penalty for rapists of girls below 12 years.


  • 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.
  • The 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.

Read more at: The Hindu

2% quota in govt. jobs for sportspersons

  • Telangana Government announced a 2% reservation for sportspersons in government employment in the State.
  • The announcement came when the Chief Minister met 18 members of the Indian contingent which had participated in the recently-concluded Commonwealth Games-2018 in Australia

Read more at: TOI

Topic 2 : Environment

Ramsar tag likely for Sunderbans

The Sunderban Reserve Forest, spread of 4,260 sq. km. with over 2,000 sq. km. of mangrove forests and creeks, is likely to be declared a Ramsar Site soon.


  • The West Bengal government gave its approval to the State Forest Department to apply for recognition under the Ramsar Convention.
  • On being conferred the status of a wetland of international importance will not only be a matter of pride for the Sunderbans but also bring a lot of international scientific attention and intervention to the area.

About Sunderbans:

  • The Sundarbans is a vast forest in the coastal region of the Bay of Bengal and considered one of the natural wonders of the world.
  • Located in the delta region of Padma, Meghna and Brahmaputra river basins
  • The Sundarbans contain the world’s largest coastal mangrove forest
  • 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.
  • It is home to about 100 Royal Bengal tigers, the creeks and river systems of the Sunderbans are also part of the reserve forest
  • Other than threats such as climate change, sea level rise, widespread construction and clearing of mangrove forests for fisheries is posing a danger to the Sunderbans.

About Ramsar site

  • A Ramsar Site is a wetland site designated of international importance under the Ramsar Convention
  • The Convention on Wetlands, known as the Ramsar Convention, is an intergovernmental environmental treaty established in 1971 by UNESCO, and coming into force in 1975.
  • It provides for national action and international cooperation regarding the conservation of wetlands, and wise sustainable use of their resources
  • Ramsar identifies wetlands of international importance, especially those providing waterfowl habitat.
  • There are currently 26 sites in India recognised as Ramsar wetland sites of international importance, including the East Kolkata Wetlands also in West Bengal.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 2 : Energy

Colleges in A.P. district go solar

The Krishna district administration in Andhra Pradesh, through the local unit of the New and Renewable Energy Development Corporation (NREDCAP), has taken initiatives to embrace solar energy.


  • Easy installation, instant generation of energy, easy repairs, tailor-made projects, and net-metering that paves the way for selling back excess power to distribution companies are some of the attractive features that make these roof-top solar panels lucrative.
  • The Medical and Health Department has asked NREDCAP officials to install rooftop solar projects in all the teaching hospitals across the district

Read more at:The Hindu

Topic 3 : ICT

e-Vidhan mission mode project

Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Statistics and Programme Implementation inaugurated the new office of Central Project Monitoring Unit for the e-Vidhan project of the Government


  • e-Vidhan is a mission mode project to digitize and make the functioning of State Legislatures in India paperless.  
  • It is a part of the broader Digital India Programme of the Government and is likely to contribute to the cleanliness & environment by reducing the use of papers to a great extent.
  • One of the key component of the strategy devised for implementation of the project is to create Project Monitoring Units both at Central as well as State levels.

Read more at: PIB

Logic devices for DNA-based computation

Scientists at the Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science (IACS), Kolkata, have been successful in designing DNA-based logic devices that would find application in DNA-based computation


  • They have designed reusable YES and INHIBIT logic systems by using a small molecule that serves as a fluorescent probe and binds to both a four-stranded DNA structure (G-quadruplex) present in human telomeres and nucleic acid cleaving enzymes (nucleases).
  • The team went a step further to design combinational logic systems (individual logic gates integrated into one another such as INHIBIT−INHIBIT and NOR−OR) by using different combinations of four nucleases (enzymes) as inputs.
  • The DNA logic gates will provide the ability to not only create more complicated, sequential DNA computations but also create interfaces between silicon and DNA-based computers.
  • The DNA-based nanodevice could be useful for diagnostic sensors and other biomolecular machines

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 5: General Knowledge

Potent molecule to treat chikungunya

A team of researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee has achieved a measure of success by finding a small molecule that has good antiviral activity against chikungunya virus.


  • The antiviral activity was so high that the small molecule was able to achieve almost 99% reduction in the virus when 5 microMolar was used
  • Using structure-based studies of chikungunya virus-specific nsP2 protease the Department of Biotechnology had earlier identified two small molecules  Pep-I and Pep-II for their inhibitory activity
  • In the latest study the researchers report that one of the two molecules  Pep-I has superior antiviral activity against chikungunya virus.
  • The small molecule was found to effectively bind to the protein of the virus (nsP2 protease) and prevent the virus from replicating.
  • The studies confirmed that both molecules had significant ability to kill the virus. The Pep-I molecule was very efficient in killing the virus  99% reduction in virus at 5 microMolar
  • The Pep-II molecule showed reduced antiviral activity of only 50% even at a higher concentration of about 200 microMolar

Read more at: The Hindu

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