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Current Affairs for Engineering Service Exam

Video Lectures and Test Series for ESE 2019

 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
  4. The Key Initiatives of Government
  5. General Knowledge

Topic 1:Economic development

Share buyback

  • A buyback is a mechanism through which a listed company buys back shares from the market
  • A buyback can be done either through open market purchases or through the tender offer route.
  • Buybacks are typically done when a company has a significant cash reserve and feels that the shares are not fairly valued at the current market price

Benefits:

  • The earnings per share (EPS) rise by default
  • The shareholders get an attractive exit option
  • It is more tax-efficient than dividends as a way to reward shareholders.

Open market mechanism:

  • The company buys back the shares from the secondary market

Tender offer route:

  • The shareholders can tender their shares during the buyback offer

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 1:Industrial development

FAME India II

Prime Minister will launch the second phase of the FAME India scheme offering incentives for mass adoption of electric vehicles.

Highlights:

  • The second phase of the scheme spanning five years will offer subsidy to all categories of electric vehicles, including two-wheelers, three-wheelers and four-wheelers including taxis and electric buses used in public transportation
  • To promote green vehicles and check pollution
  • It will envisage setting up massive charging infrastructure to support electric vehicles
  • Under the scheme, depending on technology, battery-operated scooters and motorcycles are eligible for incentives

About FAME India:

  • Government of India has notified FAME India Scheme [Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid &) Electric Vehicles in India] for implementation with effect from 1st April 2015
  • The objective to support hybrid/electric vehicles market development and Manufacturing eco-system.
  • The FAME India Scheme is aimed at incentivising all vehicle segments i.e. 2 Wheeler, 3 Wheeler Auto, Passenger 4 Wheeler Vehicle, Light Commercial Vehicles and Buses.
  • The scheme covers Hybrid & Electric technologies like Mild Hybrid, Strong Hybrid, Plug in Hybrid & Battery Electric Vehicles.

Read more at: ET

Topic 2 : Environment

M.P. seeks revival of cheetah reintroduction project

The Madhya Pradesh forest department has written to the National Tiger Conservation Authority to revive the plan to reintroduce cheetahs in the State’s Nauradehi sanctuary.

Highlights:

  • The country’s last spotted feline died in Chhattisgarh in 1947. Later, the cheetah which is the fastest land animal  was declared extinct in India in 1952.
  • The Wildlife Institute of India prepared cheetah re-introduction project in Nauradehi . Nauradehi was found to be the most suitable area for the cheetahs as its forests are not very dense to restrict the fast movement of the spotted cat.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 2 : Energy

New Bio-ATF policy

  • The oil ministry will soon announce a new Bio-Aviation Turbine Fuel (ATF) policy.
  • The idea is to promote the use of clean biofuel in aviation.

Benefits:

  • Promoting bio-fuels to create wealth from waste
  • Reduce import dependency
  • Lower carbon emissions
  • To take India forward on the path of prosperity

Read more at: ET

Topic 3 : ICT

The DNA Technology

The DNA Technology (Use and Application) Regulation Bill, 2018 was introduced in Lok Sabha.

Highlights:

  • The Bill provides for regulation of use of DNA technology for establishing the identity of certain persons.
  • Under the Bill, DNA testing is allowed only in respect of matters listed in the schedule to the Bill (such as, for offences under the Indian Penal Code, 1860, for paternity suits, or to identify abandoned children)
  • The Bill provides for the establishment of a National DNA Data Bank and regional DNA Data Banks, for every state, or two or more states.
  • Under the Bill, the Board is required to ensure that all information relating to DNA profiles with the Data Banks, laboratories and other persons are kept confidential.
  • The Bill states that the criteria for entry, retention or removal of the DNA profile will be specified by regulations.
  • The Bill provides for the establishment of a DNA Regulatory Board, which will supervise the DNA Data Banks and DNA Laboratories.
  • Any laboratory undertaking DNA testing is required to obtain accreditation from the Board.
  • The Bill specifies penalties for various offences

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 4: The Key Initiatives of Government

Sovereign Gold Bond Scheme

  • Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs) are government securities denominated in grams of gold.
  • The bonds are to be issued by RBI.
  • They will be restricted for sale to resident Indian entities including individuals, HUFs, Trusts, Universities and Charitable Institutions.
  • They will be denominated in multiples of gram(s) of gold with a basic unit of 1 gram.
  • Recently, RBI has increased the maximum investment to 4 kg (from 500g) for individuals and Hindu Undivided Family (HUF) and 20 kg for Trusts.
  • The interest rate is fixed at the rate of 2.50% per annum.
  • The tenor of the bond will be for a period of 8 years with exit option from 5th year.
  • The interest on Gold Bonds shall be taxable.
  • The capital gains tax arising to an individual on redemption of SGB has been exempted.
  • Bonds can be used as collateral for loans and are eligible for Statutory Liquidity Ratio purposes in Banks.
  • Bonds will be tradable on stock exchanges.
  • The redemption price will be in Indian Rupees based on previous week‘s simple average of closing price of gold.

Aam Admi Bima Yojana (AABY)

  • AABY is a Government of India Social Security Scheme administered through Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC).
  • It provides Death and Disability cover to persons between the age group of 18 yrs to 59 yrs.
  • It is a group insurance scheme providing insurance cover for a sum of Rs 30,000/- on natural death, Rs. 75,000/- on death due to accident, Rs. 37,500/- for partial permanent disability due to accident and Rs. 75,000/- for total permanent disability due to accident.
  • The total annual premium under the scheme is Rs. 200/- per beneficiary of which 50% is contributed Friday om the Social Security Fund created by the Central Government and maintained by LIC. The balance is contributed by the State Government / Nodal Agency / Individual.

Google Tax

  • The Google Tax was announced to introduce a tax on the income as accrue to a foreign e-commerce company outside of India.
  • Any person or entity that makes a payment exceeding Rs 1 lakh in a financial year to a non-resident technology company will need to withhold 6% tax on the gross amount being paid as an equalisation levy or Google tax.
  • This tax, however, is only applicable when the payment has been made to avail certain B2B services from these technology companies.

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