June 3,2018

June 1,2018
June 1, 2018
Quiz – June 01, 2018
June 3, 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
  1. The Key Initiatives of Government

Topic 1:Economic development

New Benami Transactions Informants Reward Scheme, 2018

With the objective of obtaining people’s participation in the Income Tax Department’s efforts to unearth black money and to reduce tax evasion, a new reward scheme titled “Benami Transactions Informants Reward Scheme, 2018”, has been issued by the Income Tax Department.

Highlights:

  • The scheme is aimed at encouraging people to give information about benami transactions and properties as well as income earned
  • Under the Benami Transactions Informants Reward Scheme, 2018, a person can get reward up to Rs. One crore for giving specific information in prescribed manner to the Joint or Additional Commissioners of Benami Prohibition Units (BPUs) in Investigation Directorates of Income Tax Department.
  • Foreigners will also be eligible for such reward.
  • Identity of the persons giving information will not be disclosed   and strict confidentiality shall be maintained.

Read more at: PIB

Revised Income Tax Informants Reward Scheme, 2018

With the objective of obtaining people’s participation in the Income Tax Department’s efforts to unearth black money and reduce tax evasion, a new reward scheme titled “Income Tax Informants Reward Scheme, 2018” has been issued by the Income Tax Department, superseding the earlier reward scheme issued in 2007.

Highlights:

  • Under the revised scheme, a person can get reward up to Rs. 50 lakh for giving specific information in prescribed manner to the designated officers of Investigation Directorates in Income Tax Department about substantial evasion of tax on income or assets in India which are actionable under the Income-tax Act, 1961.
  • With the objective of attracting and encouraging people to give information about such income and assets actionable under Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015, reward up to Rs. 5 crore has been introduced in the new reward scheme
  • Under this Scheme, a person can get reward for giving specific information in prescribed manner about substantial tax evasion on income and assets abroad which are actionable under Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015.
  • Foreigners will also be eligible for reward under this scheme.
  • Identity of the persons giving information will not be disclosed and strict confidentiality shall be maintained.

Read more at: PIB

Topic 1:Social development

SATH program

  • NITI Aayog has launched SATH, a program providing ‘’Sustainable Action for Transforming Human capital‘ with the State Governments’’
  • It was recently launched in the state of Assam in association with the state government.
  • The program will be implemented by NITI along with McKinsey & Company and IPE Global consortium.
  • The vision of the program is to initiate transformation in the education and health sectors.
  • SATH aims to identify and build three future ‘role model‘ states for health systems.
  • It aims to provide support to Assam in identifying key health priorities and implement the solutions towards transforming the health.
  • The workshop brings experts from development organizations such as World Bank, World Health Organization, UNDP, UNICEF.

Mission Bhagiratha

  • It is being implemented in the State of Telangana to ensure safe and sustainable piped drinking water supply from surface water sources.
  • It is aimed at providing tap connection to every household, the surface water sources being Krishna and Godavari Basin.
  • Water will also be provided to Industrial requirements.
  • There is also a plan to install optical fibre pipelines using the extensive water pipeline network being laid under the mission in an aim to save large amount of funds in installing OFC networks

Topic 1:Industrial development

Arctic sea route 

A Finnish official said Arctic sea route not possible despite the belief that the melting ice in the Arctic would open up alternate shipping routes.

Highlights:

  • Arctic region which has permanently frozen ice is melting at an increasing rate due to global warming and is expected to be ice free by 2060.
  • It is seen as an alternate shipping route to cut time and costs and also circumvent the global choke points.
  • Several countries have sent their ships and icebreakers in the summer months to demonstrate the navigability and countries like China and Japan are investing in infrastructure development.
  • The waters would be tough to navigate due to sub-zero temperatures and would pose serious challenges to ships effecting their movement and schedules which carries a premium in container traffic.
  • There is increasing concern in India as China makes inroads in the strategically important Arctic region which has large amount untapped minerals and fossil fuels.
  • Arctic Council is currently formulating a long term strategy for action looking into the 2030’s based on its founding charter.

About Arctic Council:

  • The Arctic Council is a high-level intergovernmental forum which addresses issues faced by the Arctic governments and people living in the Arctic region.
  • Six Arctic indigenous communities have the status of Permanent Participants on the Council. Canada, the Kingdom of Denmark (including Greenland and the Faroe Islands), Finland,Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the United States.
  • Six international organisations representing Arctic Indigenous Peoples have permanent participant status.
  • India has the observer status in the council

Read More at: The Hindu

Centre notifies Cauvery Water Management Authority

The central government has issued a notification for the Cauvery Water Management Authority following Supreme Court order.

About Cauvery management control authority.

  • The chairman of the authority will be appointed by the Central government. He/She must be of the rank of secretary or additional secretary or an eminent engineer.
  • Tenure of chairman is five years.
  • Two part-time members nominated by the Central Government
  • Four part-time members  nominated by the party State governments and Union territory administration respectively.
  • The authority will decide the sharing of the river water between Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu and the Union Territory of Pondicherry.

Highlights:

  • The authority will decide the sharing of the river water between Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu and the Union Territory of Pondicherry.
  • The authority is directed for the following mandate:
  1. To monitor the storage of water
  2. Apportion of shares
  3. Supervise operation of the reservoirs
  4. Regulate water releases with the assistance of the Regulation Committee.
  5. The CWMA will also determine the total residual storage in the specified reservoirs on June 1 every year.
  • Water share of each state will be determined on the basis of water flows together with the available carry-over storage in the reservoirs
  • The authority can seek the help of the Central Government for implementation of the Award of the Tribunal if any of states do not cooperate with the Cauvery authority.

Read more at:The Hindu

Topic 2 : Environment

Reduction in groundwater recharge in north India

The low-intensity rainfall during summer monsoon is responsible for groundwater recharge in the case of India, particularly north-west and north-central India, high-intensity rainfall is a major driver for recharging groundwater in south India.

Highlights:

  • Rainfall is classified as low-intensity if the amount is between 1-35 mm per day.
  • High-intensity rainfall is characterised by rainfall in excess of 35 mm per day.
  • While aquifers across north India, particularly in the Indo-Gangetic Plain, are characterised by alluvial soil, southern India is characterised by hard-rock aquifers.
  • Though specific yield of alluvial soil is higher than hard-rock aquifers, alluvial aquifers take longer time to get recharged in response to rainfall
  • Low-intensity rainfall provides maximum time for water to percolate and recharge the aquifer and so is favourable for groundwater in north India.
  • High-intensity rainfall mostly leads to surface run-off and doesn’t contribute much to groundwater recharge in north India
  • In contrast, hard-rock and basaltic aquifers are seen in south India. Here, high-intensity rainfall contributes more to groundwater recharge than low-intensity rainfall in south India
  • The study found the decline in groundwater recharge between 1996 and 2016 is strongly associated with decline in low-intensity rainfall in north-west and north-central India.
  • There is an increase in groundwater recharge in south India due to an increase in high-intensity rainfall.
  • The  north India must make additional efforts (in the form of artificial groundwater recharge) to check the decline in groundwater table while also reducing groundwater withdrawal for irrigation

Read more at:The Hindu

Topic 3 : ICT

IMAP to study cosmic rays in heliosphere

NASA is targeting 2024 for the launch of a new mission to learn more about the generation of cosmic rays in the heliosphere, a sort of magnetic bubble surrounding and protecting our solar system.

Highlights:

  • The Interstellar Mapping and Acceleration Probe (IMAP) mission will help researchers better understand the boundary of the heliosphere.
  • Heliosphere is the region where the constant flow of particles from our Sun, called the solar wind, collides with material from the rest of the galaxy.
  • This collision limits the amount of harmful cosmic radiation entering the heliosphere. IMAP will collect and analyse particles that make it through.
  • IMAP is critical to broadening the understanding of how this ‘cosmic filter’ works
  • The spacecraft will be positioned about 1.5 million kilometres away from Earth towards the Sun at what is called the first Lagrange point or L1.
  • Cosmic rays created locally and from the galaxy and beyond affect human explorers in space and can harm technological systems, and likely play a role in the presence of life itself in the universe.

Read more at:The Hindu

AWSAR initiative

An effort to encourage and equip PhD scholars and post-doctoral fellows with skills to communicate science with lay people, the Department of Science and Technology (DST) plans to reward students who write popular articles about their research through the Augmenting Writing Skills for Articulating Research (AWSAR) initiative.

Highlights:

  • The initiative will each year reward 100 best articles by PhD students with cash prize of Rs.1,00,000 each and a certificate of appreciation.
  • The reward for post-doctoral fellows will be Rs.10,000 each and a certificate of appreciation for 20 best articles.
  • DST is planning to reward the first batch on February 28, 2019, the National Science Day.

Read more at: The Hindu

Topic 4: The Key Initiatives of Government

SHe-box Portal

  • SHe-box (Sexual Harassment electronic box) is an online platform launched by the Ministry of Women and Child Development.
  • The platform is to enable women employees to file complaints related to sexual harassment at the workplace.
  • It enables both public and private sector employees to lodge their complaints.
  • It ensures the effective implementation of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act, 2013.

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