NATIONAL AFFAIRS

Sumitra Mahajan inaugurates South Asian Speakers Summit in Madhya Pradesh:

The two-day South Asian Speakers Summit was inaugurated by Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan at Indore in Madhya Pradesh . The speakers would discuss achieving sustainable goals, including poverty, development, environment and gender concerns in South Asia, the home to over 25 per cent of the world population. The summit is being organised jointly by the Indian Parliament and Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), a global organisation for multilateral political and legislative discussions. This will conclude with the adoption of an ‘Indore Declaration‘ at a closing ceremony.


Telangana ERC decides to determine power hike on Suo Motu basis:

In a major embarrassment to power distribution companies, Telangana State Electricity Regulatory Commission (TSERC) has decided to determine the power tariff for the year 2017-18 on the Suo Motu basis.

The reason is that the discoms, which had filed the Aggregate Revenue Requirement (ARR) in November itself, have failed to submit the tariff proposals for the next financial year till now. “Initially, the delay was due to the state joining Centr’s UDAY scheme. But now the chief minister has to look into the proposals and finalise the state government’s subsidy portion. Once, the subsidy is finalised, then we will decide on the tariff and file the proposals before the ERC”.


Aadhaar a must for scholarships:

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The Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry has made Aadhaar mandatory for providing scholarships to meritorious school students from economically weaker sections. Students who want to avail scholarship benefits under ‘National Means-cumMerit Scholarship Scheme’ need to get enrolled under Aadhaar by June 30 . This will not be applicable in the states of J&K, Assam and Meghalaya.


Tamil Nadu CM Palaniswami wins confidence vote; DMK members evicted for causing chaos:

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami won the vote of confidence in the state assembly. Palaniswami won by 122 voice votes. He belongs to the AIADMK faction led by party General Secretary VK Sasikala.

 


Telangana acquires land for Kaleswaram project:

The Medak district administration will acquire as much as 2,000 acres of land for various requirements including that of the Kaleswaram irrigation project. 900 acres each in Toopran and Narsapur are needed for Kaleswaram, which involves building barrages and reservoirs.


Kashmir to observe 2017 as the ‘Year of Apple’:

Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti 2017 as ‘Year of Apple’ in a major bid to promote the famed Kashmiri apples in domestic and foreign markets. The Chief Minister launched the High Density Apple Plantation Scheme in Srinagar. These high-density plants will be routed through J&K Bank along with the subsidy. “Fifty per cent subsidy would be provided by the government to the farmers under the scheme,” said Ms. Mufti. The high density plants have a yield of 50-70 metric tonnes per hectare against 10-12 tonnes in case of conventional plants.


Aero India- 2017 concludes at Yelahanka in Bengaluru:

11th biennial edition of the International Aerospace and Defence exhibition- Aero India concluded at the Air Force Station, Yelahanka in Bengaluru. AIR correspondent reports that Asia’s biennial premier air show Aero India 2017, has received overwhelming response from business delegates and general public.On the first three days number of MOUs was signed under manufacturing sector. HAL, the premier Aeronautics giant received several crore rupees worth contracts for manufacturing sub-parts of aircrafts. Boeing and Rolls Royce have signed MOUs to set up manufacturing base in India and Airbus will set up Centre of Excellence for Aerospace skills development in Hyderabad.


TTD loses around ₹200 cr. in laddu sale:

TIRUMALA Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams suffered a heavy loss in the sale of its famous ‘laddus’. The loss for the financial year is expected to cross ₹200 crore. The steep rise in the price of ingredients that go into the making laddus, the subsidy it enjoys, and stagnant selling price have contributed to a huge deficit, and loss of ₹8 per laddu, on the sale price of ₹25.


Hyderabad to get new set of twin reservoirs:

Work for the next generation of twin reservoirs for the city’s drinking water requirements might commence this year, more than a century after the Osmansagar and Himayatsagar lakes were conceptualised by the legendary engineer Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya. The existing twin reservoirs together can hold 6 tmc of water, the future twins are being planned for holding a whopping 20 tmc of water each.


Swachh Bharat Mission: Tamil Nadu’s Perambalur district builds 4666 toilets in 48 hours:

Each unit costed Rs 12,000 and was constructed with full government subsidy.In a mission to provide all rural households with individual toilets in Perambalur district, the District Rural Development Agency (DRDA) built 4,666 toilets in 121 villages in 48 hours under the Swachh Bharat Mission.The total cost of the work was Rs 7.20 crore with 6.60 lakh hollow cement blocks, 3.60 lakh concrete cement rings and 30,000 cement bags utilised for the construction of toilets.


GST Council clears law to compensate states for revenue loss:

The Finance Minister Arun Jaitley-led GST Council finalised the Draft Compensation Bill, in a bid to speed up the rollout of Goods and Services Tax by July 1, 2017. The 10th meeting of the GST Council also cleared the final drafting of the anti-profiteering clause to ensure benefit of lower taxes gets shared with consumers. Crucial draft laws pertaining largely to Central GST (CGST), Integrated GST (IGST) and State GST (SGST) are yet to be finalised. The GST Council will now meet next on March 4 and 5 to give final touches to the CGST, IGST and SGST laws.


INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

China to build reactors in South China Sea:

To power its offshore oil and gas exploration work, China is stepping up construction of floating nuclear reactors in the South China Sea, which is claimed by multiple countries. China is seeking help from Russia to speed up the project. At present, diesel generators are the main power source for China’s offshore operations.


India’s vaccine regulatory body NRAI gets highest WHO ratings :

WHO completed the assessment of the status of the Indian vaccine regulatory system against WHO NRA Global Benchmarking Tool (GBT) and measured the maturity of the system in India. The National Regulatory Authority of India (NRAI) has been given the maximum ratings by global health body World Health Organisation for vaccine regulations. WHO completed the assessment of the status of the Indian vaccine regulatory system against WHO NRA Global   Benchmarking Tool (GBT) and measured the maturity of the system in India.


Germany keen on investments in Tamilnadu: CG:

Germany was keen on strengthening its ties with India particularly in Tamil Nadu and was looking forward to investments in various sectors, Consul-General in Chennai.“In the same way, Germans invested in India in various fields, specially in automobile industry in Chennai”, he was quoted as saying in a Raj Bhavan release. “Germany is keen on further strengthening its business and strategic ties with India, particularly in Tamil Nadu and look forward to investments in areas of renewable energy, green technologies and education exchange programmes”.


Powerful storm slams California, bringing mudslides, sinkholes and deadly winds:

The powerful storm blew in from the Pacific Ocean, hitting California with high winds and heavy rain that downed power lines, leaving 60,000 people in the Los Angeles area without power, and prompting hundreds of flight delays and cancellations at airports.

With the storm feeding on an atmospheric river of moisture stretching far out into the Pacific, precautionary evacuations of homes in some neighbourhoods were requested due to the potential for mudslides and debris flows.


Pakistan Senate passes much-awaited Hindu marriage bill: