Thursday, 20 April 2017

Daily Update On Current Affairs - April 20, 2017

current affairs
Here's your daily summary of Current Affairs.

Union Cabinet Approves Policy Guidelines To Allow State Entities To Directly Borrow Bilateral Loans

The Union Cabinet has approved the policy guidelines to permit financially sound State Government entities to borrow directly from bilateral ODA (Official development Assistance) partners for the purpose of implementing vital infrastructure projects. The approval is subject to fulfillment of certain conditions and all repayments of loans and interests to the funding agencies. As a corollary to the new decision, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) has been permitted to borrow directly from Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Official Development Assistance (ODA) loan for implementation of Mumbai Trans Harbour Link (MTHL) project.

Tamil Nadu, Himachal Pradesh And Tripura Chosen For Krishi Karman Awards, 2015-16

The Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare has selected Tamil Nadu, Himachal Pradesh and Tripura for the Krishi Karman awards for their record performance in the production of food grains during 2015-16. Apart from these states, Meghalaya would get commendation prize for total food grain production and would be given a cash award of Rs 1 crore. Tamil Nadu has been chosen in large category (production more than 10 million tons), Himachal Pradesh in medium category (1 to 10 million tons) and Tripura in small category (less than 1 million tons).

Union Cabinet Decides To Ban Use Of Red Beacon By VIPs From May 1

The Union Cabinet has put a ban on the use of red beacons on cars of VIPs. Only three categories were exempted from the ban. They are the President, Vice-President and Chief Justice of India. The exemption also applies to the emergency service vehicles. Accordingly, fire brigade, ambulance services, police vehicles and other emergency services will be allowed to use the blue beacon. The decision will come into force on May 1, 2017. In effect, the ban is applicable to the Prime Minister, Union Ministers, Chief Ministers, State Cabinet ministers, bureaucrats and judges of the High Court and Supreme Court. The decision was taken to end VIP culture.

Union Cabinet Clears Election Commission’s Proposal To Buy VVPAT Machines

The Union Cabinet has cleared the Election Commission’s proposal to buy new Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) machines. The machines are expected to be used in the 2019 General Elections. The Union Cabinet has permitted the Election Commission (EC) to procure 16,15,000 units, at an estimated base price of Rs. 3,173.47 crore. So far, EC has sent at least 11 reminders to the Centre seeking funds for procuring VVPAT machines. The Centre has chosen Bengaluru-based Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL) and Hyderabad-based Electronics Corporation of India Ltd (ECIL) to manufacture the VVPAT units. The government has also directed the Price Negotiation Committee to negotiate the final unit price. It is expected that the two PSUs will need at least 30 months to produce over 16 lakh VVPATs.

Current Data On India’s Steel Import And Export

According to the Joint Plant Committee’s annual report on steel sector for the time period of 2016-17, India’s import of total finished steel declined by 36 % to 7.4 million tons (MT). At the same time, steel exports increased 102% to reach 8.2 million tonnes (MT) in the said time period. The country also fared well in terms of production as well. The production of crude steel was 97.385 MT during April-March 2016-17, which is 8.5% increase over the previous year steel production.

Global Economy To Grow 3.5% In 2017: IMF

The IMF has predicted that the global economy would grow at 3.5% in 2017, up from 3.1 % last year, and 3.6% in 2018. This year’s projection of IMF is marginally higher than what was stated in their last update. The improvement in this year’s projection springs from good economic news in Europe and Asia, notably from China and Japan. As per IMF, momentum in the global economy has been building up since the middle of the last year making it reaffirm its previous forecasts of higher growth for this year and next year. However, it has warned that despite these signs of strength, many countries are likely to continue to struggle this year as well. IMF has warned that weather conditions and civil unrest would threaten the low-income countries with mass starvation. Particularly, in Sub-Saharan Africa, IMF expects the income levels to fall slightly. Further, commodity exporters in the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America are likely to struggle with low levels of commodity prices since early 2016.

India Ranks Eighth In Global FDI Confidence Index

India has moved from the 9th to the 8th place in the Global FDI Confidence Index for investors. The list continues to be headed by the USA, with Germany and China rounding off the top three. This report was published by the A.T. Kearney Foreign Direct Investors’ Confidence Index. Governance and regulatory issues weighed heavily in the investors' minds before taking any investment decisions. India’s focus on transparency and ease of doing business have made India quite a popular choice for the Foreign Direct Investors. Among the emerging economies, China and India are the top two performers.

Chris Gayle Becomes First Batsman To Score 10000 T20 Runs

West Indian batting legend Chris Gayle became the first batsman to score 10000 runs in the T20 format. He reached this landmark while playing for Royal Challengers Bengaluru against Gujarat Lions in the IPL 2017 on 18th April 2017. The second highest scorer is Brendon Mccullum of New Zealand, with 7596 runs. Gayle has also hit an amazing 743 sixes in his T20 career so far and he is far from being finished.

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