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Chief Ministers of various states agree to boost agriculture exports

  • Chief Ministers of various states reached a consensus on how to boost agricultural exports.
  • Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis chaired the second meeting of the high-powered committee of Chief Ministers for transformation of Indian agriculture in Mumbai organised by NITI Aayog.
  • There was also unanimity on drafting a market intelligence based export policy.
  • The meeting was attended by Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath and Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar among others.
  • Mr Fadnavis while appreciating the participation of all states in the meeting, expressed that some states have come out with solutions on the difficulties faced in the agriculture sector and those aspects will be particularly looked into in future meetings so that they can be implemented across the country.


  • There was broad discussion on universalisation of agriculture credit and also aspects related to productivity, marketing and export.


Government relaxes norms for shares with differential voting rights

  • The Ministry of Corporate Affairs has amended the provisions relating to the issue of shares with Differential Voting Rights (DVRs) provisions under the Companies Act.
  • Its objective is to enable promoters of Indian companies to retain control of their companies in their pursuit for growth and creation of long-term value for shareholders.
  • The key change brings in an enhancement in the previously existing cap of 26 per cent of the total post-issue paid-up equity share capital to a revised cap of 74 per cent of the total voting power.
  • Another key change brought about is the removal of the earlier requirement of distributable profits for 3 years for a company to be eligible to issue shares with Differential Voting Rights.
  • These two initiatives have been taken by the Government in response to requests from innovative tech companies and startups and to strengthen the hands of Indian companies.


V Prez embarks on three nations tour to Lithuania, Latvia & Estonia

  • Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu will embark on a three-nation visit to Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.
  • The Vice President will be accompanied by a high-level delegation. Vice President’s visit will be the first-ever high level visit to the three Baltic countries.
  • The visit takes place in the context of increasing political engagement, as well as intensified trade and commercial ties.
  • The visit of Vice President to the three Baltics countries is to advance India’s outreach to the important countries in the region.
  • This visit will also provide an opportunity to brief the Baltic countries and get their views on enhanced opportunities for cooperation, thus further strengthening our existing friendly ties.
  • Notably, India and Baltic countries have historical connect and common linguistic roots.
  • The cutting edge technology and innovation ecosystems of the Baltic countries complement India’s huge market and appetite for these technologies.

PM Modi leaves for two-day visit to Bhutan

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has left for a two-day visit to Bhutan.
  • India-Bhutan partnership is of a special character and substance and forms an important pillar of Government of India’s Neighbourhood First policy.
  • His visit to Bhutan in the beginning of the current term reflects the high importance that the Government attaches to India’s relations with that country which is a trusted friend and neighbour.
  • Both countries jointly celebrated the Golden Jubilee of the establishment of formal diplomatic relations last year.
  • He will receive audiences with the King of Bhutan, hold delegation-level talks with his counterpart, meet the Leader of Opposition, inaugurate 720 megawatt Mangdechhu hydro-power project and release a commemorative stamp to mark the 50 years of Indo-Bhutan hydropower relations.
  • He will also inaugurate the Ground Station for South Asian Satellite and launch the first phase of RuPay Card and address the students of Royal University of Bhutan.
  • India and Bhutan will ink MoUs in science, technology, engineering and maths and judicial sectors.


Scheme to involve school eco clubs in DDA’s plantation drive launched

  • In Delhi, a scheme to involve school eco clubs in the DDA’s plantation drive was launched at a green belt in Rohini’s sector 37 by Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri.
  • As part of an afforestation drive of the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), four lakh indigenous trees will be planted this year across various biodiversity parks and other green belts in the national capital.
  • Delhi Lieutenant Governor (LG) and DDA Chairman Anil Baijal expressed happiness at the response of the schools and said there was a need to incentivise the performers of the scheme.

MP: About 80 lakh farmer families to benefit from PMKSNY

  • In Madhya Pradesh, about 80 lakh eligible farmer families will benefit from the Pradhanmantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana in the state.
  • Under the scheme, total Rs 6 thousand that is Rs 2 thousand each in three installments are being deposited every year directly in the accounts of the eligible farmer families.
  • The scheme has been envisioned with an aim to improve the life of small and marginal farmers of the country.
  • More than 35 lakh beneficiaries have been selected so for in Madhya Pradesh for Pradhanmantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana.
  • Out of them, over 29 lakh 70 thousand farmers have got the first instalment of scheme.
  • The second instalment of this scheme has also been deposited in the bank accounts of more than 9 thousand farmers of the state till 15 August.
  • To prevent any type of corruption in the Pradhanmantri Kisan Samman Nidhi Yojana, list of farmer families is being prepared by the Patwaris in collaboration with the Gram Sabha.
  • Only after the approval of the Gram Sabha, the benefit of the scheme will be given to the farmer families.


Ravi Shastri re-appointed as head coach of Indian men’s team

  • Ravi Shastri was re-appointed head coach of the Indian men’s team by the Kapil Dev-led Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC), which unanimously felt that the incumbent’s communication skills and understanding of team issues stood out.
  • Shastri, who had the public backing of captain Virat Kohli even before the short-listing was initiated, has been reappointed for a two-year period, ending with the 2021 T20 World Cup in India.
  • The three-member CAC also comprised former India coach Anshuman Gaekwad and ex women’s captain Shantha Rangaswamy.
  • This will be Shastri’s fourth stint with the national team, having served briefly as the Cricket Manager (2007 tour of Bangladesh), Team Director (2014-2016) and head coach (2017-2019).
  • Shastri pipped former New Zealand coach Mike Hesson, Australian Tom Moody and former India teammates Robin Singh and Lalchand Rajput to the post.
  • India has won 11 out of 21 Tests, 43 out of 60 ODIs and 25 T20 Internationals out of 36 on his watch.

Harshad Pandurang Thakur appointed NIHFW Director

  • Harshad Pandurang Thakur has been appointed as the Director of National Institute of Health and Family Welfare.
  • The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, appointed him for a period of five years.
  • The NIHFW, an autonomous organisation under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, acts as an apex technical institute as well as a think tank for the promotion of health and family welfare programmes in the country.


Tamil Nadu Honours ISRO Chief K Sivan with APJ Abdul Kalam Award

  • Tamil Nadu State government honoured its ‘son of the soil’ and Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) chief K Sivan by presenting him with Dr A P J Abdul Kalam award.
  • Siva, the ISRO chief who was born in Kanniyakumari and studied in a government school, was not present to collect the award, due to his engagements.
  • The Kalam award is given to those who work for promoting scientific growth, humanities and students’ welfare hailing from Tamil Nadu.
  • The award carries 8 gm gold medal, Rs five lakh and a citation.
  • The citation hailed Sivan as “Rocket Man” and traced his humble origins and his splendid rise in career including a stint as Director of the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre and Liquid Propulsion Centre.
  • Sivan took over as ISRO chief from A S Kirankumar in 2018 and oversaw the launch of India’s ambitious moon mission, Chandrayaan-2, in July.


Wrestler Bajrang Punia nominated for Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award

  • Asian and Commonwealth Games gold-medalist wrestler Bajrang Punia has been nominated for the country’s highest sporting honour – the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award.
  • His name was finalized by a 12-member selection committee on the opening day of a two-day meeting.
  • The panel comprises the likes of Bhaichung Bhutia and MC Mary Kom among others and is headed by Justice Mukundakam Sharma.
  • Bajrang had last year won the gold medal in the 65-kg freestyle event at the Asian Games held in Jakarta.
  • He had also won the gold medal in the same category at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.
  • Bajrang is only the fourth wrestler to be finalised for the Khel Ratna award after Sushil Kumar, Yogeshwar Dutt and Sakshi Malik.

Indian women’s team registers 2-1 victory over Japan in Olympic Test event

  • In Hockey, the Indian women’s team registered a comfortable 2-1 victory over the hosts Japan in the Olympic Test event in Tokyo.
  • Both the Indian teams have secured their places in the FIH Olympic Qualifiers, to be held later this year, by winning their FIH Series Finals.
  • Being World No. 5 and the top-ranked side in the tournament among men, India starts as favorites against World No. 12 Malaysia.
  • The Indian men will play World No. 8 New Zealand tomorrow and World No. 16 Japan in their last round-robin match.
  • Indian women will next face their toughest test in World No. 2 Australia, before facing World No. 11 China.

Complete election process by 14th Sep to vote in BCCI polls: EO to state units

  • BCCI Electoral Officer N Gopalaswami has made it clear that all the affiliated state units will have to conduct their polls by the 14th of next month to be eligible for participating in parent body’s elections.
  • Committee of Administrators (CoA) has prepared a tentatively scheduled for BCCI elections on 22nd October. 
  • The procedural rules for the election of Board’s Apex Council have been posted on the cricket body’s website.
  • The ninth member on the Council will be a representative from the Comptroller and Auditor General office.
  • The Apex Council will comprise  (men and women) and one state unit representative. President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, two players’ representatives.
  • The ninth member on the Council will be a representative from the Comptroller and Auditor General office.


Indonesia Independence Day: August 17th

  • Indonesia’s Independence Day, also known as Hari Kemerdekaan, colloquially known as Tujuhbelasan (“the Seventeenth”).
  • On this day in 1945, the Indonesian leader Soekarno read a proclamation at his home in Jakarta, declaring the independence of Indonesia.
  • August 17th was also the date when the red and white national flag, known to locals as Sang Saka Merah-Putih, was flown for the first time.
  • Indonesia is the world’s 4th most populous country, with over 300 different ethnic and linguistic groups. 
  • The day starts with flag-hoisting ceremony, followed by a parade and local games competitions like balap karung (a two-person gunny sack race), panjat pinang (where contestants climb up a greased pole or tree to grab a prize at the top), and many more local games.


Renowned Bangladeshi novelist Rizia Rahman passes away

  • Renowned Bangladeshi novelist and the Ekushey Padak winning author Rizia Rahman passed away in Dhaka at the age of 79.
  • She wrote in all genres of creative work including short stories, poems, essays and children’s fiction but she was renowned for her novels.
  • Bong Theke Bangla, Rokter Okshor and Ghar-Bhanga-Ghar are among some of his more well-known novels.
  • She was born in Kolkata in 1939 and migrated to East Bengal after the partition.
  • She received the Bangla Academy Literary Award in 1978 and was awarded Ekushey Padak this year.
  • President Abdul Hamid and State Minister for Cultural Affairs KM Khalid expressed condolences at the death of Rizia Rahman.

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