National Current Affairs
May 4th Week 2015 Current Affairs
Category : National Current Affairs
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1) CCG (Chennai-Colombo-Gulf) service to boost trade links.

  • The launching of Chennai-Colombo-Gulf (CCG) feeder service by Simatech Shipping and Evergreen Line, two leading shipping companies in the world to Visakhapatnam Port will provide huge opportunities for new markets in the Middle East, Africa and Far-East.
  • CCG Offering direct connectivity to sohar besides jebel Ali.
  • The CCG will operate four container ships of 2,000 TEU each, one by Evergreen Line and three by Simatech.
  • The new service will facilitate export of buffalo meat, food grains mainly rice, fly ash and steel coils to only Gulf but also the European Union, the United States and the Mediterranean.
2) Delhi High Court rules in favour of Arvind Kejriwal government, says anti-corruption branch can arrest police personnel.
  • Delhi High Court not only denied bail to police Head Constable Anil Kumar in a corruption case but also declared that Delhi government`s Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB) had the jurisdiction to arrest police personnel.
  • Constable Anil Kumar was arrested on corruption charges following a complaint by a scrap- dealer on the helpline no 1031.
  • He decried that the constable was trying to extort Rs 20,000 from him and had threatened to implicate him in false cases.
3) Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa Okays Rs. 1,800 crore for welfare schemes.
  • Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, J Jayalalithaa announced development and welfare schemes worth over Rs. 1,800 crore.
  • Jayalalithaa launched several schemes, including those for improvement of roads, drinking water facilities and for helping needy families headed by women.
  • Jayalalithaa had sanctioned green houses for 20,000 families in the initial phase. Each family will be granted Rs. 2.10 lakh; and poor in town panchayats living in mud or thatched houses were eligible for the scheme to be implemented by the Tamil Nadu Slum Clearance Board.

4) PM Modi launches `Kisan TV` for farmers.

  • Marking the first anniversary of NDA government, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched ‘Kisan TV’.
  • The 24X7 channel is owned by public service broadcaster Doordarshan (DD) and is dedicated to agriculture and allied sectors.
  • In his Union Budget 2014 speech, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, had announced that a 24-hour TV channel will be dedicated to the agriculture sector, for which he had marked an outlay of Rs. 100 crore.
About `Kisan TV`:
  1. DD Kisan will disseminate real-time inputs to farmers on new farming techniques, water conservation and organic farming.
  2. It will also share best farm practices in different parts of the country, quiz shows for farmers, and a bottoms-up approach involving agriculturists.
  3. The channel show will also invite programme suggestions from general public and real-time interaction with experts and farm scientists.
  4. Prior to launching this channel, Prasar Bharati was running ‘Krishi Darshan’ programme on DD1 for farmers. It was one of the longest running programmes on DD and was launched on January 26, 1967.
5) Union Government constitutes Committee headed by Vijay Kelkar to revisit PPP infra model.
  • Union Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley had announced that the PPP mode of infrastructure development has to be revisited, and revitalized, in which the major issue involved is rebalancing of risk.
  • Union government has constituted a 10-member committee to review and revitalise public private partnership (PPP) mode of infrastructure development.
  • The committee will be chaired by former finance secretary Vijay Kelkar and submit its report within a period of 3 months from the date of its Constitution.
The Terms of Reference of the Committee are as follows:
  1. Review of the experience of PPP Policy, including the variations in contents of contracts and difficulties experienced with particular variations/conditions.
  2. Analysis of risks involved in PPP projects in different sectors and existing framework of sharing of such risks between the project developer and the Government, thereby suggesting optimal risk sharing mechanism.
  3. Propose design modifications to the contractual arrangements of the PPP based on the above and international best practices and our institutional context.
  4. Measure to improve capacity building in Government for effective implementation of the PPP projects.
  5. The Committee shall submit its report within a period of three (3) months from the date of its Constitution.
6) Tripura Removes Controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act(AFSPA).
  • Tripura government decided to lift Armed Forces Special Power Act (AFSPA) from the state, where the controversial law was in effect for the last 18 years to curb insurgency.
  • This Act was imposed in the state on February 16, 1997 following spurt of violence by the ultras.
  • About Armed Forces Special Powers Act:
  • The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) is an Act of the Parliament of India which was passed on 11 September 1958.
  • It is a law with just six sections granting special powers to the Indian Armed Forces in what the act terms as "disturbed areas".
7) Dr. Jitendra Singh announces Rs. 325 cr projects in Guwahati.
  • The Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) of the Ministry of Development of North-Eastern Region (DoNER) has announced projects worth Rs. 325 crores for the Northeast region on the occasion of completion of one year of NDA Government.
  • 200 crore will be meant for projects in the State of Assam and Rs. 125 crore for "Organic Farming Mission" for the entire North-Eastern region.
8) Project to restore habitat for sloth bears in Jessore.
  • Gujarat Government has initiated Sloth Habitat Project in Jessore wildlife sanctuary to provide better habitat to sloth bears.
  • As per the last census in 2011, nearly 293 sloth bears were found in the state forests.
  • The project aims at planting good amount to trees in the sanctuaries and removing unwanted plant species that have intruded in the habitat.
  • This project was implemented in Banaskantha district by state forest department in coordination with the Gujarat Ecology Commission (GEC).
About Sloth bears:
  1. The sloth bear also known as the Stickney bear or labiated bear.
  2. Categorised as vulnerable species in International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red list.
  3. Sloth bear is omnivorous animal and mainly eat honey, termites, fruits (mangoes and figs) and grass.

9) Mega Food Park Inaugurated at Nalbari, Assam.

  • The first mega food park of North East will be inaugurated at Nathkuchi in Nalbari district of Assam. 
  • Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and Union Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal jointly inaugurated the North East Mega Food Park.
  • Mega Food Park gives a major boost to the food processing sector by adding value and reducing food wastage and loss at each stage of the supply chain with particular focus on perishables.
  • North East Mega Food Park has been set up in 50 acre of land at the cost of Rs. 76 crore.
10) HRD Minister Smriti Irani launches revamped website of NCTE.
The revamped website of NCTE (National Council for Teacher Education’s)  was launched by HRD Minister Smriti Irani to bring more transparency in the governance of teacher education.
The new website of the National Council of Teacher Education (NCTE) will be more promising with application for teacher education programmes, redressal of public grievances and appeal process within it.
The website in new avataar will be fully dynamic and responsive. It will have the following online features: 
  1. Application for teacher education programmes. 
  2. Appeal processes. 
  3. Redressal of public grievances. 
  4. Filing of RTI applications. 
  5. Mapping of the teacher education institutions through GIS. 
  6. Dynamic database of teacher education programmes and faculty database. 


11) Ministry of HRD (Human Resource Development) Committed to Flagship Schemes of School Education Including Mid Day Meal Scheme.
  • The Government of India is committed to the Flagship schemes of School Education including the Mid-Day Meal Scheme.
  • The Mid-Day Meal programme covers about 10.33 crore children studying in elementary schools in the government, government-aided schools and special training centres for mainstreaming the out of school children.
  • The Mid-Day Meal programme is being administered in all the States and Union Territories of the country on an agreed funding pattern.
  • The budget estimate for the MDM programme has been made at the level of Rs. 9236 crores for 2015-16.
  • The Central Government has in fact enhanced outlays for States affected by drought for which an additional Rs. 466.70 crores has been approved under the MDM scheme to provide children at the elementary school level, with a mid day meal during the current summer vacations.
12) Maharashtra government launches Swachhata Saptapadi scheme.
  • Swachhata Saptapadi scheme launched by Maharashtra government on the lines of Union Government’s flagship Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
  • The scheme was launched by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis along with actor Aamir Khan who is brand ambassador of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in Mumbai.
  • The objective of the scheme is to expedite the process of cleanliness drive complete with toilet every household by October 2, 2015 and 2016.
The seven points of this scheme include:
  1. A promise of participation of people in the Swachh Maharashtra campaign.
  2. Mobilisation of public participation.
  3. Construction of 100 per cent toilets in every corporation wards.
  4. Creation of awareness about segregation of dry and wet waste.
  5. Adaptation of scientific method for waste disposal.
  6. Take initiative for promoting greenery and open spaces.
13) India and Sweden signed MoU on cooperation of MSME.
  • The government approved signing of an agreement between India and Sweden to promote cooperation in the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector.
  • The objective of the MoU is to promote cooperation between the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises of the two countries.
  • It provides a structured framework and enabling environment to the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) sector of the two countries to understand each other’s strengths, markets, technologies, policies etc.
  • It also enables the respective MSMEs to participate in each other’s trade fairs/ exhibitions and to exchange business delegations so that joint ventures, tie-ups, technology transfer etc. could take place.
14) Govt notifies Black Money Act.
  • The Union Government notified the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income as Assets) and imposition of Tax Act, 2015.
  • The Act will come into effect from 1 April 2016.
  • The Act prescribes tax of 30 per cent and penalty up to 90 per cent on undisclosed bank accounts and assets abroad. However, this provision will apply only to those who do not use the compliance window.
  • The government will notify separate dates for the compliance window during which any Indian can disclose his/ her foreign bank account and assets, pay 30 per cent tax along with 30 per cent penalty and protect him/herself from legal action.