Daily Current Affairs: 8th September 2019: The Hindu+PIB
Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana
Context: PM Ujjwala Yojana achieves target of 8 crore LPG connections 7 months ahead of target date.
Highlights of the Scheme
- Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana was launched by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi on May 1st, 2016 in Ballia, Uttar Pradesh.
- Under this scheme, 5 Cr LPG connections are supposed to be provided to BPL families with a support of Rs.1600 per connection in the next 3 years.
- The connections will be issued in the name of women of the households to ensure women’s empowerment, especially in rural India.
- A total amount of Rs. 8000 Cr. has been allocated towards the implementation of the scheme.
- The process of identification of the BPL families will be completed with the help of the Socio Economic Caste Census Data.
- The Scheme aims to protect the health of women & children by providing them LPG – the clean cooking fuel.
- The launch of PMUY in Ballia was followed by launch of the scheme in Dahod in Gujarat and has also been launched in several districts in UP & Bihar.
- PMUY is likely to aid in an additional employment of around 1 Lakh and provide business opportunity of at least Rs. 10,000 Cr. over the next 3 Years to the Indian Industry.
- The Scheme will also give a boost to the MAKE IN INDIA campaign of the government as all the components under the scheme will be manufactured domestically.
National Infrastructure Pipeline
Context: A task force is planned to be formed for drawing up National Infrastructure Pipeline worth Rs. 100 Lakh Crore from FY 2019-20 to FY 2024-25.
About the National Infrastructural Pipeline
The National Infrastructure Pipeline project will comprise greenfield and brownfield projects that are costing above Rs 100 crore each. There are a number of other qualifications for inclusion in the pipeline for the current year that include:
- Availability of a DPR.
- Feasibility of implementation.
- Inclusion in the financing plan and readiness/ availability of administrative sanction.
Monitoring of project will be the responsibility of each Ministry/Department so as to ensure their timely and within-cost implementation. Robust marketing of the pipeline of projects requiring private investment through the India Investment Grid (IIG), National Investment & Infrastructure Fund (NIIF), will also be enabled and managed effectively by the Task Force.
Full-fledged maritime route between India and Russia
Context: MoU signed for opening a full-fledged Maritime route between the Chennai in India’s eastern sea board and the Russia’s eastern port city. The MoU was signed during the Prime Minister Modi’s visit to the Vladivostok, Russia recently.
About the Route
The sea route covering a distance of about 5,600 nautical miles i.e., 10,300 km will start from Vladivostok to southward on the Sea of Japan past the Korean Peninsula, Taiwan and the Philippines in the South China Sea, past the Singapore and through the Strait of Malacca, to emerge into the Bay of Bengal and then cut across through the Andaman and Nicobar archipelago to its final destination in Chennai.
A large container ship which can travel at normal speed of 37-46 km an hour, would be able to cover the whole journey in approximately 10 to 12 days.
How important is Vladivostok for Russia?
It is the largest port on the Russia’s Pacific coast and is home to the Pacific Fleet of the Russian Navy. It is located on the Golden Horn bay north of North Korea and a short distance from Russia-China Border. Commercial Fishing and Shipping are the main commercial activities carried out at this massive port.
How it will be significant for India?
First and foremost significance of the route is the ease of connectivity between the two major ports which will act as a catalyst to boost the cooperation between India and Russian Far East. Secondly, India is building the nuclear power plants in collaboration with the Russia in Kudankulam on the sea coast in Tamil Nadu’s Tirunelveli district. This opening of the sea route will help in the Project. Thirdly, the project would increase the Indian presence in the Indo-Pacific, and specially the South China Sea which is a deeply contested patch of ocean that Beijing considers its stomping ground.
Mid-Monsoon 2019 Lightening Report
Context: Climate Resilient Observing Systems Promotion Council (CROPC) recently released its Mid-Monsoon 2019 Lightening Report. Climate Resilient Observing Systems Promotion Council (CROPC) is a non-profit organisation that works closely with India Meterological Department(IMD). This is for the first time, a report has mapped the lightening strikes across the country along with the causalities occurred. The report has been prepared by the IMD’s lightening forecasts including the Nowcast, Indian Institute of Tropical Management-Pune’s lightening network data, NRSC and ISRO inputs.
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Key Highlights of the Report
As per the report, Odisha recorded the maximum incidents of lightening and UP recorded maximum deaths due to lightening during April-July 2019. The report counted the number of lightening strikes in India at 65.55 lakh during the first four month period between April-July 2019. Out of these numbers counted, 23.53 lakh i.e., approximately 36% happened to be cloud-to-ground lightening, the kind that reaches the Earth. Another 41.04 lakh (64%) were in-cloud lightening, which remains confined to the clouds in which it was formed. Lightening strikes have caused at least 1,311 deaths in these 4 months. Uttar Pradesh accounted for 224 deaths followed by Bihar at 170, Odisha at 129 and Jharkhand at 118.
Travel and Tourism Competitive Report 2019
Context: World Economic Forum (WEF) has recently released the “Travel and Tourism Competitive Report 2019”. The biennial report ranks 140 countries on the basis of their travel and tourism competitiveness. The study scores the countries on 4 indicators:
- Enabling Environment
- Travel and Tourism policy and enabling conditions
- Natural and Cultural Rankings
Key Findings of the Report
Spain followed by France, Germany, Japan and United States are the world’s most travel-ready nations.
India which is ranked at 34th position in 2019 up from 40th position in 2017 has made the greatest improvement among the top 25% of the countries that were previously ranked.
India’s highest improvement was in enabling environment, by 10 places to 98. The least one was in infrastructure as well as in natural and cultural rankings, by just three places each.
Context: The Union Minister of State for Culture and Tourism has recently flagged off first ever Mobile Science Exhibition (SCIENCE EXPLORER) for the entire Ladakh Region in Leh. The programme will be the first of its kind in the region with a broad objective to popularize science and technology among the students and general public and to create a scientific awareness.
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It was originally launched as the Mobile Science Museum (MSM) in 1965, with a mission, ‘If the people cannot visit the museum, let the museum visit the people at their doorstep’. It is the largest and the longest running outreach programme of the National Council of Science Museums (NCSM), which is an autonomous organization under the Ministry of Culture, GoI.
AFSPA extended for six months in Assam
Following the law and order situation in the State of Assam, the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act has been extended for 6 months effective from 28th August 2019. The AFSPA has been in operation in Assam since November 1990. This Act allows security forces to conduct operations, arrest anyone anywhere without prior notice.
The 7th edition of SLINEX is going to be held in India this year. It is a bi-lateral maritime fleet exercise between the Navies of Sri Lanka and India. SLINEX 2019 will run for a week time and will features the wide-ranging naval exercises including the helicopter operations. There had been six successful series of SLINEX conducted since 2005. This exercise has played a major role in helping the two Navies in understanding each other’s procedures and contributes towards the maritime security in the region.
Project ‘Bal Basera’
The Project is to be launched with the support of the CPWD at AIIMS Rishikesh. It is a project for the welfare of Children of Construction Workers deployed at the site. Bal Basera will have the facilities to accommodate about 35 Children and is planned to be run by the CPWD Officer’s Wives Association, which is a Socio Cultural Organization actively involved in the social welfare activities of weaker sections of society since last 48 years.
North Eastern Regional Agricultural Marketing Corporation (NERAMAC) Limited
The foundation stone of the NERAMAC marketing complex in Guwahati, Assam has been laid by the Union Minister for Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER). This market complex will be a place to showcase the products of the North-Eastern Region. NERAMAC Limited was incorporated in 1982 and has its registered office at Guwahati, Assam. It is a GoI enterprise which is operating under the administrative control of Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) READ MORE