Current Affairs for Engineering Service Exam
- National and International Issues on
- Economic Development
- Social Development
- Industrial Development
- Energy and Environment
- Information and Communication Technology
- General Knowledge
Topic 1:Economic development
Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana (PM KISAN)
The Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana (PM-KISAN) was announced in the interim Budget 2019-20 on February 1, 2019.
Highlights of the scheme:
- Under the Scheme, Rs 6,000 will be given per year to small and marginal farmer families having combined land holding/ownership of upto 2 hectares.
- The amount will be given in three installments of Rs.2000 each.
- The amount will be transferred directly to the bank account of beneficiaries through Direct Benefit Transfer.
- The scheme aims to supplement the financial needs of the SMFs in procuring various inputs to ensure proper crop health and appropriate yields, commensurate with the anticipated farm income at the end of the each crop cycle.
- PM KISAN is a Central Sector scheme with 100% funding from Government of India.
- The Scheme becomes effective from 1.12.2018 for transfer of benefit to eligible beneficiaries.
- State Government and UT Administration will identify the farmer families which are eligible for support as per scheme guidelines.
Benefits of the scheme:
- It will transform the lives of small and marginal farmers in India, by providing them assured monetary support in three instalments every year.
- DBT will ensure transparency in the entire process and will save time for the farmers.
- Empowering project designed for ensuring dignified life for small scale farmers.
- The scheme is expected to address farmer migration and improve crop intensity.
Read more at: IndianExpress
Goods & Services Tax Council
Goods & Services Tax Council is a constitutional body for making recommendations to the Union and State Government on issues related to Goods and Service Tax.
- Chairperson- the Union Finance Minister.
- Members-the Union Minister of State in charge of Revenue or Finance
- Other members-the Minister in charge of Finance or Taxation or any other
- Minister nominated by each State Government
The Goods and Services Tax Council shall make recommendations to the Union and the States on—
- the taxes, cesses and surcharges levied by the Union, the States and the local bodies which may be subsumed in the goods and services tax;
- the goods and services that may be subjected to, or exempted from the goods and services tax;
- model Goods and Services Tax Laws, principles of levy, apportionment of Goods and Services Tax levied on supplies in the course of inter-State trade or commerce under article 269A and the principles that govern the place of supply;
- the threshold limit of turnover below which goods and services may be exempted from goods and services tax;
- the rates including floor rates with bands of goods and services tax;
- any special rate or rates for a specified period, to raise additional resources during any natural calamity or disaster;
- special provision with respect to the States of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Jammu and Kashmir, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim, Tripura, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand; and
- any other matter relating to the goods and services tax, as the Council may decide.
- Alcohol for human consumption- Power to tax remains with the State
- Five petroleum products – crude oil , diesel, petrol, natural gas and aviation turbine fuel(ATF)-GST Council to decide the date from which GST will be applicable
- Tobacco-Part of GST but power to levy additional excise duty with Central Government
- Entertainment tax levied by local bodies-Power to tax remains with local bodies
Read more at: PIB
Topic 2 : Energy
Project launched to convert high-ash coal into methanol
Researchers at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)-Delhi and engineers from Pune-based Thermax have joined hands to set up a pilot plant for producing methanol from high-ash content Indian coal.
- The pilot plant will have the capacity of producing one tonne methanol every day.
- The experience will help in development of larger capacity methanol production plants.
- The pilot is expected to be completed in 2021
Significance of the project:
- Liquid fuels are preferred in the transportation sector over solid and gaseous fuels, mainly due to their low ash content and high energy density, which allow them to be stored in vehicles for extended periods.
- Methanol as a liquid fuel for transport and cooking applications is considered as credible option for India.
- Methanol is known to exhibit excellent properties as a blending agent in internal combustion engines. Its derivative, dimethyl ether (DME), can potentially address a variety of energy demands, including as domestic fuel.
- Catalysis- It is the modification of the rate of a chemical reaction, usually an acceleration, by addition of a substance not consumed during the reaction.
- Process technology
Read more at: DowntoEarth
Topic 3 : ICT
Rail Drishti Dashboard
Ministry of Railways launched Rail Drishti dashboard, encompassing all the digitisation efforts in Indian Railways and promoting transparency and accountability.
- It brings information from various sources on a single platform and gives access to key statistics and parameters to every citizen of the country.
- This dashboard can be accessed using a desktop/laptop or a mobile device such as a phone or tablet.
Read more at: PIB
Mobile App “cVIGIL”
Election Commission of India launches Mobile App “cVIGIL” to enable citizens to report on violation of election code of conduct
Highlights of the app:
- cVIGIL will allow anyone in the election-bound state to report violations of Model Code of Conduct (MCC) that comes into effect from the date of announcement of elections and goes on till a day after the polls.
- By using this app, citizens can immediately report on incidents of misconduct within minutes of having witnessed them and without having to rush to the office of the returning officer to lodge a complaint.
- The vigilant citizen has to click a picture or record a video of upto two minutes’ duration of the scene of violations of the model code
- The photo or video is to be uploaded on the app.
- The automated location mapping will be done by the app using the Geographic Information System.
- After its successful submission through the app, the vigilant citizen gets a Unique ID to track and receive the follow up updates on her or his mobile.
- A citizen can report many incidents in this manner and will get a unique id for each report for follow up updates.
- The identity of the complainant will be kept confidential.
Read more at: PIB