January 17, 2019

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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
  1. General Knowledge

Topic 1:Economic development

Recapitalisation of Export-Import Bank of India

The Union Cabinet  has approved the recapitalization of EXIM Bank.

Major Impact:

  • Exim Bank is the principal export credit agency for India.
  • The infusion of capital into Exim Bank will enable it to augment capital adequacy and support Indian exports with enhanced ability.
  • The infusion will give an impetus to anticipate new initiatives like supporting Indian textile industries, likely changes in Concessional Finance Scheme and others.

About EXIM Bank

  • Exim Bank of India (Exim Bank) was established in 1982 under an Act of Parliament as the apex financial institution for financing, facilitating and promoting India’s international trade.
  • The Bank primarily lends for exports from India including supporting overseas buyers and Indian suppliers for export of developmental and infrastructure projects, equipment, goods and services from India.
  • It is regulated by RBI.

About Recapitalisation:

  • Recapitalisation is described as a strategy of enhancing the financial base of an entity to overcome a rough financial situation or to enhance its financial health.
  • From the practical angle, capital is the money put by the owners for the running of the enterprise. Hence, recapitalization is the venture of the owner/shareholders to make the firm financially strong.

Read more at: The Hindu

RBI eases norms for external commercial borrowing

The Reserve Bank of India has decided to liberalise external commercial borrowing (ECB) norms, allowing all companies that are eligible for receiving foreign direct investment, to raise funds through the ECB route.

Benefits:

  • Inflow of capital will increase
  • Production will improve
  • Ease of doing Business will improve
  • Strengthening anti money laundering / combating the financing of terrorism framework

About ECB:

  • External commercial borrowing (ECBs) is basically a loan availed by an Indian entity from a nonresident lender.
  • Most of these loans are provided by foreign commercial banks and other institutions.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 1:Social development

Global Housing Technology Challenge

The Government of India has launched the Global Housing Technology Challenge.

Key Facts:

  • The move aimed at introducing best technologies that seek to construct houses in a shorter period of time with lower cost.
  • It is undertaken under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana Urban (PMAY-U).

Key features:

  • It aims to fast-track the construction of affordable housing and meet the target of constructing 1.2 crore houses by 2022.
  • It focuses on identifying and mainstreaming proven demonstrable technologies for lighthouse projects and spotting potential future technologies for incubation and acceleration support through ASHA (Affordable Sustainable Housing Accelerators) — India.

Objectives:

  • To enable adoption of construction techniques for housing that are affordable and takes minimum time as less as three months instead of the conventional three years for construction.
  • Bring a paradigm shift in technology transition using large-scale construction under the PMAY-U as an opportunity to get the best available construction technologies across the globe.

About Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana Urban (PMAY-U):

  • The Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban) Mission seeks to address the housing requirement of urban poor including slum dwellers through following programme components:
  1. In-situ Rehabilitation of existing slum dwellers using land as a resource through private participation.
  2. Credit Linked Subsidy (Implemented as a Central Sector Scheme).
  3. Affordable Housing in Partnership.
  4. Subsidy for Beneficiary-led individual house construction/enhancement.
  • It is being implemented by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation (MoHUPA).

Read more at: ET

Topic 3 : ICT

National level Initiatives in the field of science communication

The Department of Science and Technology (DST) along with Doordarshan (DD), Prasar Bharati launched two science communication initiatives, DD Science and India Science .

DD Science:

  • An one-hour slot on Doordarshan National channel
  • It will be telecast Monday to Saturday from 5pm to 6pm.

India Science:

  • A internet-based channel.
  • It is  available on any internet-enabled device, and will offer live, scheduled play and video-on-demand services.

Significance of the initiatives:

  • The two science communication platforms are National level initiatives to elevate science into a celebration and bring it close to everyday life.
  • They aim to make them jewels in the crown of the country for serving humanity for the furtherance of science.
  • The channels have been conceived and supported by the DST and are being implemented and managed by Vigyan Prasar, an autonomous organisation of DST.
  • They are the first step in creating a national science channel for the country.
  • The two channels will have science-based documentaries, studio-based discussions, and virtual walkthroughs of scientific institutions, interviews and short films and will be completely free to access.

Read more at: PIB

Integrated E-filing and Centralized Processing Centre 2.0 Project

The Union Cabinet has given its approval for Integrated E-filing & Centralized Processing Center 2.0 Project of the Income Tax Department.

The broad objectives of this project:

  • Faster and accurate outcomes for taxpayer.
  • First time right approach,
  • Enhancing user experience at all stages.
  • Improving taxpayer awareness and education through continuous engagement
  • Promoting voluntary tax compliance.
  • Managing outstanding demand.

Benefits:

  • To improve accuracy
  • To reduce refund/processing turnaround time drastically
  • Facilitation to taxpayers in resolving outstanding tax demands;
  • Integrated contact centers for taxpayer assistance 
  • Tax payer outreach program through digital media and employer/partner accreditation program to bring significant enhancement in services to taxpayers.
  • The decision will ensure horizontal equity by processing returns filed by all categories of taxpayers across the country in a consistent, uniform, rule driven, identity blind manner.
  • This will assure fairness in tax treatment to every taxpayer irrespective of their status.
  • The E-filing and CPC projects have enabled end to end automation of all processes within the Department using various innovative methods to provide taxpayer services and to promote voluntary compliance.

Read more at: PIB

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