What are the tools launched by the Union Minister of Commerce and Industry to rank the States and Union Territories (UTs) on startup ecosystem?
Union Minister of Commerce and Industry, Suresh Prabhu launched three tools – States and Union Territory Startup Ranking Framework, Compendium of Good Practices for Promoting Startups in India and the Startup India Kit – for ranking States and Union Territories (UTs) on startup ecosystem.
• Main objective of States and Union Territory Startup Ranking Framework is to encourage States and UTs to take proactive steps for strengthening the Startup ecosystems at the local level.
• The compendium focuses on enriching the Startup ecosystem through ethical behaviours.
• The startup India kit will serve as a one-stop guide on all Startup India offerings.
Laghu Udyog Bharati is an All India Organisation, related to which of the following?
Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Science & Technology, has formulated a mechanism in CSIR (Council of Scientific & Industrial Research) to facilitate regular interface with small-scale industry for transfer of technologies from CSIR laboratories. An announcement regarding this was made during a meeting with members of Laghu Udyog Bharati, an all-India organisation of small scale industries. Laghu Udyog Bharati has 450 branches and 25,000-member units in India. National Secretary of Laghu Udyog Bharati, Sampat Toshniwal said that, there is a disconnect between CSIR and small-scale industries. It was said that, a nodal officer in CSIR will coordinate with the small-scale industry and CSIR labs for required technology transfer.
The 25th meeting of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council was held in New Delhi on January 18, 2018. In this meeting, GST rate on services by way of admission to Amusement Parks may be reduced from 28% to _____?
At 25th meeting of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council held in New Delhi on January 18, 2018, it was recommended that GST rate on services by way of admission to Amusement Parks may be reduced from 28% to 18%. The recommendation to reduce GST rate on entry to amusement parks was in response to requests received from several quarters that amusement parks promote social wellness and are avenues to attain fun and learning for children and their families in a real active entertainment. On January 25, 2018, a notification was issued giving effect to this recommendation of GST Council. Thus, admission to amusement parks including water parks, theme parks, joy rides, go-carting, merry-go-rounds and ballet is now taxable at the lower rate of 18%.
In which state, the foundation stone for Rhodendron Park was laid at?
Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu laid foundation stone for Rhodendron Park in Tawang district of Arunachal Pradesh. The Rhodendron Park will be built in an area of 1.15 hectares. It will be partly funded under Border Area Development Programme (BADP). Nearly 30 species of rhododendrons will be planted in the park and conserved. The park will also contain modern nursery, information center on rhododendron, resting sheds, vehicle parking facility, public toilet facility, signage and lightings and iron security gate. A plantation drive of various varieties of Rhodos was also initiated by Pema Khandu.
What is the sum allocated by the Government for the railway projects in Odisha?
Under Union Budget 2018, Central Government has allocated Rs 5252 crore for different railway projects in Odisha. This year’s allocation is the highest ever budgetary allocation for railway infra development in Odisha till date. In Union Budget 2017, budgetary allocation for railway infra development in Odisha was Rs. 5102 crore, while for 2016, it was Rs. 4682 crore. Despite of highest budgetary allocation this year, Odisha State Government is not pleased because it had demanded Rs 6500 crore for the development of railway sector in the state.
Which state Government launched ‘Kisan Kalyan Pradhikaran’, a farmers’ welfare department which will be entrusted with the responsibility to make agriculture remunerative by enhancing productivity and thereby mitigate the distress of farm households and landless workers?
On February 6, 2018, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar stated that the State Government will establish ‘Haryana Kisan Kalyan Pradhikaran’, a farmers’ welfare department which will be entrusted with the responsibility to make agriculture remunerative by enhancing productivity and thereby mitigate the distress of farm households and landless workers. This announcement was made by Mr. Khattar while interacting with farmers during the ‘Ek Aur Sudhar’ programme in Chandigarh. Chief Minister of Haryana would be the ex-officio chairperson of the Haryana Kisan Kalyan Pradhikaran, while State’s Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister would be the ex-officio vice- chairman. Besides handling its primary responsibility of making agriculture remunerative, Haryana Kisan Kalyan Pradhikaran will also synergise with various departments for implementation and monitoring of schemes, programmes and projects thorough the Agriculture Advisory Council.
Which state government hosted the 5th South Asia Region Public Procurement Conference 2018?
5th South Asia Region Public Procurement Conference is being held in New Delhi from 5th – 7th February, 2018. The Conference was inaugurated by Union Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley. It is being hosted by government of India through the Public Procurement Division (PPD) of the Ministry of Finance and All India Management Association (AIMA). It is being held under the auspices of the South Asia Region Public Procurement Network (SARPPN). SARPPN is sponsored and facilitated by the World Bank, Asian Development Bank and Islamic Development Bank. Objective of this conference is to serve as a platform for Heads of Public Procurement and other key stakeholders in the eight South Asian countries to meet and learn from one another and interact with experts in the field of public procurement. Theme of 5th South Asia Region Public Procurement Conference is “Public Procurement and Service Delivery”.
RBI released sixth bi- monthly Monetary Policy on February 7, 2018. What is the projected Economic growth for 2017-18?
On February 7, 2018, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced Sixth Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Statement for financial year 2017-18. This time too, the Policy Repo Rate has been kept unchanged. Repo Rate has been kept unchanged at 6.00 per cent. Consequently, the Reverse Repo Rate at 5.75 per cent, marginal standing facility (MSF) rate and the Bank Rate at 6.25 per cent too remains unchanged. The six-member RBI Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) voted 5:1 for the decision. Only Dr. Michael Debabrata Patra voted for a 0.25 percent increase in repo rate. Estimated inflation for fourth quarter (Q4) of financial year 2017-18 i.e. January – March 2018 period is 1 per cent. It is to be noted that, In December 2017, consumer inflation rose to a 17-month high of 5.21 per cent, which is much above RBI’s medium-term target of 4 per cent. Economic growth for 2017-18 is projected at 6.6 per cent.
Which State cabinet approved FinTech Policy 2018 and thereby became the first State in India to adopt a comprehensive fintech (Financial Technology) policy for fostering an environment for fintech startups?
Maharashtra State cabinet approved Maharashtra FinTech Policy 2018 and thereby became the first State in India to adopt a comprehensive fintech (Financial Technology) policy for fostering an environment for fintech startups. Vision of this policy is to position Maharashtra among the five best global fintech hubs in the coming years. Under this policy, Maharashtra State Government will provide the infrastructure and financial support to facilitate 300 startups over next three years. Maharashtra State Government has provided Rs 200 crore for this purpose. Along with Mumbai, Nagpur and Pune too would be turned into fintech hubs. Daily operations related to the implementation of this policy will be overseen by Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis himself along with a dedicated fintech team.
Assam State Government would soon set up a new dedicated agency to look into all aspects of business and investment in the state. What is the name of the agency?
Assam State Government would soon set up ‘Invest Assam’ a new dedicated agency to look into all aspects of business and investment in the state. This decision was taken post conclusion of the two-day ‘Global Investors Summit-Advantage Assam’. During the course of this summit, around 200 memorandum of understanding (MoUs) worth Rs one lakh crore were signed. Senior officials of Industries and Commerce Department of Assam State Government have been directed to work out the future course of action for speedy execution of these MoUs.
Which company signed an agreement with NCERT to integrate ‘Digital Citizenship and Safety’ course in information and communication technology curriculum?
On 6th February 2018, Google and NCERT signed an agreement to integrate ‘Digital Citizenship and Safety’ course in information and communication technology curriculum. The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) contains a curriculum on IT and communication technologies in its teachers training programme. Students from class I to XII will be trained using the curriculum developed jointly by NCERT and Google. Students from nearly 1.4 million schools in India will be trained. This curriculum has four themes – being smart, being safe, being a digital citizen and being future ready. No fee is charged by Google for this training.
In which Indian state, Google India and Tata Trusts combinedly launched “Internet Saathi” programme?
On 7th February 2018, Google India and Tata Trusts extended their Internet Saathi programme to 4,000 villages in six districts of Tamil Nadu. Google India and Tamil Nadu government also announced that, they have planned to provide Google Cloud credits and access through its affiliate for eligible startups coming under the Tamil Nadu government’s startup initiative. Google India will also provide technical mentorship and support to various startups. The announcement was made by Tamil Nadu Information Technology Minister M Manikandan. It was also announced that Google and Tamil Nadu government will work together to make government sites mobile friendly, help local small and medium businesses to use online facilities, and Internet safety education for children. The ‘Internet Saathi’ programme was started as a pilot programme in Rajasthan in July 2015.
Which is the world’s busiest international airport in terms of passenger traffic?
Dubai International Airport has retained its position as world’s busiest international airport in terms of passenger traffic. During 2017, Dubai International Airport served 88.2 million passengers, which marks 5.5% per cent increase as compared to 83.6 million passengers in 2016. In 2014, Dubai International Airport surpassed London Heathrow as the world’s busiest airport for the first time. Thus, it has retained its No. 1 position for the fourth consecutive year. Increase in international passenger traffic at Dubai International Airport can be attributed to several factors including expansion of routes from Emirates and easing of visa regulations for Chinese and Russian visitors. Paul Griffiths, Chief Executive of Dubai Airports expects that passenger traffic will reach 90.3 million in 2018. Several process improvements by adopting new technology are underway to expand airport’s annual capacity to 118 million passengers.
What is ‘Empzilla’?
‘Empzilla’, a chat-based job search mobile app, first of its kind in India has been launched. Using Empzilla, employers and job searchers can easily carry out a conversation. This also spares the Human Resource department’s strenuous job of going through so many mails. Empzilla has a geo location feature. This lets the users find out the exact distance between the hiring venue and the candidate’s location. At every stage, candidate gets notifications like ‘application viewed’, ‘application in review’, ‘shortlisted’, ‘interview invite’. This is said to be a quick and cost-effective method.
Which state government introduced ‘Pollution Metre’, a mobile application to spread awareness against pollution?
On 6th February 2018, Madhya Pradesh government introduced ‘Pollution Metre’, a mobile application to spread awareness against pollution in the western part of Madhya Pradesh. The mobile application ‘Pollution Metre’ is available on Google Play Store. This app has been developed jointly by a private firm and Madhya Pradesh Pollution Control Board. Using the ‘Pollution Metre’ app, users can check the status of air, water and noise pollution in their areas. Using this app people from 8 districts in western Madhya Pradesh can notify their concerns regarding pollution and environment. This would help the government to have a check on pollution.
Name the first indigenous RTOS developed from scratch in India by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL)?
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has developed the first flight of Hawk-i with indigenous Real Time Operating System (RTOS). Hawk-i is the first indigenous RTOS developed from scratch in India. It has been certified by Center for Military Airworthiness and Certification (CEMILAC). RTOS is the system software that provides a standard run-time environment for safe and reliable real-time applications. This HAL-RTOS supports Integrated Modular Avionics (IMA) architecture. Its important features are address, space and time partitioning, priority pre-emptive process scheduling and health monitoring. The HAL-RTOS can be made as standard Real Time Operating System for future avionics systems made in India.
India successfully test-fired Prithvi-II, an indigenously developed nuclear capable missile from a test range in Odisha. What type of missile is Prithvi-II?
On 7th February 2018, India successfully test-fired Prithvi-II, an indigenously developed nuclear capable missile from a test range in Odisha. Prithvi-11 is a surface-to-surface missile. It can strike through a range of 350 km. Its trial was carried out from a mobile launcher from launch complex-3 of the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur. All mission objectives were satisfied during the test launch and it was declared a successful launch. Prithvi-II has the capability to carry 500-1,000 kg of warheads. It has liquid propulsion twin engines. It uses advanced inertial guidance system. The launch was carried out by Strategic Force Command (SFC) of the Army. It was monitored by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) scientists. Prithvi-II was inducted by the Armed forces in 2003. It is the first missile developed by DRDO under the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP).
From which space center, SpaceX’s launched its ‘Falcon Heavy’ rocket towards Mars on 6th February 2018?
SpaceX’s launched its ‘Falcon Heavy’ rocket towards Mars from the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida. Falcon Heavy is said to be the world’s most powerful rocket. It carried a Tesla roadster as a mock payload. Three minutes after the launch, the Falcon Heavy’s two side boosters separated from the central rocket. The two boosters flew back to earth eight minutes after launch. This is the first time a privately financed rocket has attempted to send a payload out of Earth’s orbit.
Name the Pioneer of Children’s Theatre, who passed away recently due to age related ailments, in Mumbai?
On 5th February 2018, Sudha Karmarkar, Pioneer of Children’s Theatre, passed away due to age related ailments, in Mumbai. Sudha Karmarkar was 83 years old. She founded the children’s theatre in Mumbai named as ‘Bal Rangbhumi- Little Theatre’. She has directed several plays for children. She has also acted in those plays. She started the Little Theatre movement in 1959 with the first children’s drama ‘Madhu Manjiri’.
John Mahoney recently passed away. Who was he?
On 4th February 2018, actor John Mahoney passed away after brief illness in Chicago. John Mahoney was 77 years old. He was well-known for playing the title character in the “Frasier” show. John Mahoney worked in films for nearly 35 years. His important works are “The American President,” “Moonstruck,” “In the Line of Fire,” and “Say Anything”.