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TNPSC Current Affairs and GK Today - 11th - 18th, March 2017

GST Council approves States and UTs GST Bills

GST Council meeting presided by Finance Minister Arun Gaitley has approved draft Bills for implementing the goods and services tax (GST) in States and Union Territories (UTs). It was the 12th meeting of the GST Council. The Council already has approved three other GST Bills pertaining to central GST, integrated GST and the compensation to be paid to States for loss of revenue. The approval of these bills paves the way for the Centre and the States to pilot GST, the new indirect tax system, proposed to be introduced from July 1, 2017 through Parliament and the state assemblies.

Krishi Unnati Mela (or Agriculture Science Fair) 2017, New Delhi

The Krishi Unnati Mela (or Agriculture Science Fair) 2017 was held at the campus of IARI in New Delhi from March 15-17, which was jointly organized by Indian Agricultural Research Institute (ICAR) and Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare. The purpose of the mela is to display and popularise the latest advancement in agricultural research and technology development among farmers and end users since 1972.

G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors’ Meeting started in Baden-Baden, Germany

The G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors’ Meeting has started in Baden-Baden, Germany from March 17, 2017. The 2-day meeting is an opportunity to discuss developments in the global economy with my international counterparts and decide on actions we can undertake to respond to the major challenges we all face.

3-day International Buddhist conference on “Buddhism in 2lst Century

The 3-day International Buddhist conference on “Buddhism in 2lst Century: Perspectives and Responses to Global Issues” has started at Nava Nalanda Mahavihara, Rajgir in Nalanda district, Bihar on March 17, 2017. During the conference, the scholars will give their deliberations on Perspective and Responses to global challenges and crisis. Over one thousand delegates from 35 countries including Sri Lanka, Nepal, Singapore and Indonesia are participating in it. 

Jwala Gutta appointed as a new member of Sports Authority of India (SAI)

India’s most successful Badminton Doubles specialist Jwala Gutta has been appointed a new member of the governing body of Sports Authority of India (SAI). Two-time Olympian Jwala won the bronze medal at the 2011 World Championships. She is also a 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games champion and a silver medallist at the 2014 Glasgow Games in women’s doubles.



Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare ministry has launched “Mission Fingerling” to achieve Blue Revolution

The Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare has launched Mission Fingerling programme with a total expenditure of about Rs. 52000 lakh to achieve Blue Revolution. The focus of the programme is to create an enabling environment for an integrated and holistic development and management of fisheries for the socio-economic development of the fishers and fish farmers. The target of the mission is to increase the fisheries production from 10.79 mmt (2014-15) to 15 mmt by 2020-21.

Karnataka government will launch “Namma Canteens” to serve cheap food

As per Karnataka budget 2017–18, the Karnataka government has allocated Rs.100 crore for setting up of government subsidized chain of food centres “Namma Canteens” across the state to provide breakfast for Rs. 5 and lunch, dinner for Rs. 10 each to the common man. Approx 200 Namma Canteens will be set up in Bengaluru alone. Apart from this, the state lifted VAT on liquor, announced free eggs for Anganwadi workers and free LPG service for 5 lakh poor families.

Manhar Valji Bhai newly appointed Chairman of National Commission for Safai Karamcharis

Manhar Valji Bhai, the former BJP legislator from Gujarat, has become the new Chairman of National Commission for Safai Karamcharis (NCSK). The post of the Chairman was lying vacant for the past almost one year. Beside this, two other members, Manju Diler from Uttar Pradesh and Dilip Kallu Haathived from Maharashtra, also took charge as members of the NCSK. 

Madhukar Gupta committee submitted its report to strengthen border protection in fencing along the Indo-Pakistan border

The committee constituted under the Chairmanship of Madhukar Gupta, has submitted its report to the Government of India (GoI) to strengthen border protection and address vulnerabilities in fencing along the Indo-Pakistan border. The Committee has given its recommendations broadly on the issues of threats and border protection, assessment of force level, deployment on the border, infrastructure and technology issues for protection of border and administrative issues. It has been decided to initiate action in light of the recommendations of the Committee in consultation with the stakeholders. This was stated by the Minister of State for Home Affairs, Kiren Rijiju in a written reply to question by J.J.T. Natterjee and E.T. Mohammed Basheer in the Lok Sabha on March 14, 2017.

Jiratchaya Sirimongkolnawin crowned the new Miss International Queen 2016

Jiratchaya Sirimongkolnawin from Thailand has been crowned the new Miss International Queen 2016 at a contest billed as the world’s largest and most popular transgender pageant. This 12th edition of beauty pageant was held in Pattaya City, Thailand on March 10, 2017. The mission of the pageant aims towards LGBT and Transgender awareness and equality in both society and workforce.

Tamil Nadu government launched women safety application “Ammavin Aran”

The All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) IT wing has launched the first-of-its-kind women safety application ‘Ammavin Aran’ in Tamil Nadu. The app will give the user details about the nearest police station and hospital along with map details and phone number. There is an in-built whistle, which can manipulate the phone speaker to create a loud noise when pressed by anyone in distress. The app also carries an in-built call recorder and ‘Tips’ icon to provide life saving information. The meaning of ‘Ammavin Aran’ is “mother’s fortress”. Currently, AIADMK is in power in Tamil Nadu and is the third largest party in the Indian Parliament.

Kerala installed India’s largest floating solar Photo-Voltaic (PV) plant 

The National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPC) has recently installed India’s largest floating solar Photo-Voltaic (PV) plant at Rajiv Gandhi Combined Cycle Power Plant (RGCCPP) in Kerala’s Kayamkulam district.

Audrey Truschke written the book “Aurangzeb: The Man and the Myth”

The book “Aurangzeb: The Man and the Myth” has been authored by historian Audrey Truschke that retells the complex and contested life of the sixth Mughal emperor “Aurangzeb”. It is a fascinating biography of an emperor who continues to dominate the contemporary discourse on the Hindu-Muslim relationship and beyond. The book addresses Aurangzeb’s concern at the time of his death that he came as a stranger and would leave as a stranger. The novel is an example of how historical biographies of complex characters can be written.

Lee Chong Wei won the men’s singles at the 2017 All England Open badminton championships

Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia has won the men’s singles at the 2017 All England Open badminton championships in Birmingham, United Kingdom by defeating Shi Yuqi of China in the final by 21-12, 21-10. It is his 5th singles title. Apart from this, the Chinese pair of Lu Kai and Huang Yaqiong won the Mixed Doubles title by defeating the Malaysian duo of Peng Soon Chan and Liu Ying Goah in the final by 18-21, 21-19, 21-16.

The World Day Against Cyber Censorship (WDACC) is observed on March 12 

The World Day Against Cyber Censorship (WDACC) is an online event held every year on March 12 to rally support for a single, unrestricted Internet that is accessible to all and to draw attention to the ways that governments around the world are deterring and censoring free speech online. The annual event is symbolized by a logo created by Reporters Without Borders consisting of a computer mouse breaking free from a chain.

The 22nd edition of Asian Athletics Championship will be held in Odisha

The 22nd edition of Asian Athletics Championship will be held in India at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Odisha from July 2017. With this, Bhubaneswar will become the 3rd city in India to host the athletics championship after New Delhi in 1989 and Pune in 2013. Nearly 800 athletes from 45 countries are expected to take part in the tournament.

Union Finance Ministry has given permission to Print the plastic currency notes of Rs 10

The Union Finance Ministry has given permission to Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to conduct field trials of plastic (polymer-based) currency notes of Rs 10 denominations. It was announced by Union Minister of State (MoS) for Finance Arjun Ram Meghwal in a written reply in the Lok Sabha

India and Russia signed agreements for the Sukhoi Su-30MKI

India and Russia have signed two long-term support agreements for the Sukhoi Su-30MKI combat aircraft fleet, covering around 57,000 spares and components related to the aircraft. The agreements were signed by India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) with Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation and United Engine Corporation at the first India-Russia Military Industrial Conference held in New Delhi.

Sanjauli police post in HP becomes "first in India to be linked with CCTNS"

Sanjauli police post in Himachal Pradesh becomes first in India to be linked with CCTNS Sanjauli Police Station in Shimla (Himachal Pradesh) has become the first police post in the country to be linked with Crime and Criminal Tracking Network & Systems (CCTNS). The linking of the police post will facilitate the people for lodging online/offline complaints, Tenants, police verification of job, Character verification and migrant labourer registration through police post.

Trivendra Singh Rawat was sworn-in as the new Chief Minister of Uttarakhand

Senior BJP leader Trivendra Singh Rawat was sworn-in as the new Chief Minister of Uttarakhand (18.03.2017), Governor KK Paul administered the oath of office and secrecy to Mr Rawat and his council of ministers at a function in Dehradun’s Parade Ground. Mr Rawat was unanimously elected the leader of BJP legislature party.

Amarinder Singh sworn-in as 26th Chief Minister of Punja

Amarinder Singh sworn-in as CM of Punjab Senior Congress leader Captain Amarinder Singh was sworn in as 26th Chief Minister of Punjab. He was administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor VP Singh Badnore at Raj Bhawan in Chandigarh. Besides him, 7 ministers including Navjot Singh Sidhu also sworn in as cabinet ministers. Two women MLAs Aruna Chaudhary and Razia Sultana were sworn in as Ministers of State (Independent Charge). In recent state election, Congress under the leadership of Amarinder Singh had won 77 seats in the 117 member Assembly elections.

Biren Singh sworn in as CM of Manipur

Biren Singh sworn in as CM of Manipur BJP’s N Biren Singh took oath as the Chief Minister of Manipur. He was administered oath to the office and secrecy by Governor Najma Heptulla. National People’s Party’s (NPP) Joykumar takes oath as the deputy chief minister. This is for the first time in India’s history since independence, BJP was able to form government in Manipur. In the recent assembly election BJP, which was the second largest party behind Congress (28 seats), had claimed that it enjoyed the support of 32 MLAs in the 60-member assembly. Manipur will be the third northeastern state where BJP will be in power.

Justice Rajendra Menon sworn in as Patna High Court Chief Justice

Justice Rajendra Menon sworn in as Patna High Court Chief Justice. Justice Rajendra Menon was sworn in as the Chief Justice of the Patna High Court. He was administered oath to office by Bihar Governor Ramnath Kovind at a function in Raj Bhawan. Recently, President had appointed and transferred Patna HC Acting Chief Justice Hemant Gupta as the Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court.

Siddhartha Mukherjee and Paul Kalanithi, Indian-American authors shortlisted for Wellcome Book Prize

Two Indian-American authors shortlisted for Wellcome Book Prize Two Indian-American authors Siddhartha Mukherjee and Paul Kalanithi have been shortlisted for the £30,000 Wellcome Book Prize. Siddhartha Mukherjee was shortlisted for his study of genetics and mental health in his book ‘The Gene’. Besides Paul Kalanithi is the first posthumous author shortlisted for his life-affirming reflection on facing mortality ‘When Breath Becomes Air’. The winner will be announced at a ceremony at Wellcome Collection in April 2017. The Wellcome Book Prize celebrates fiction and non-fiction works engaged with the topics of health and medicine.

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