Important Current affairs dated 12th March 2017 for Competitive Exams in India.
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Parliament passes HIV and AIDS (Prevention and Control) Bill 2017
The Parliament on 11 April 2017 passed the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) (Prevention and Control) Bill, 2017.
The Bill provides for the prevention and control of the disease and protection of human rights of those affected by it.
The Bill also prohibits any kind of discrimination against such people on ground of treatment, employment and workplace.
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (Prevention and Control) Bill was passed on 21 March 2017 in the Rajya Sabha.
Informed consent and disclosure of HIV status: The Bill requires that no HIV test, medical treatment, or research will be conducted on a person without his informed consent.
Role of the Union and State Governments: The Union and State Governments shall take measures to prevent the spread of HIV or AIDS, provide anti-retroviral therapy and infection management for persons with HIV or AIDS, facilitate their access to welfare schemes especially for women and children, and others.
Role of the Ombudsman: An ombudsman shall be appointed by each state government to inquire into complaints related to the violation of the Act and the provision of health care services.
Guardianship: A person between the age of 12 to 18 years who has sufficient maturity in understanding and managing the affairs of his HIV or AIDS affected family shall be competent to act as a guardian of another sibling below 18 years of age.
Court proceedings: Cases relating to HIV positive persons shall be disposed off by the court on a priority basis. In any legal proceeding, if an HIV infected or affected person is a party, the court may pass orders that the proceedings be conducted (a) by suppressing the identity of the person, (b) in camera, and (c) to restrain any person from publishing information that discloses the identity of the applicant.
Uttar Pradesh Govt scraps Samajwadi Pension Scheme
- The Uttar Pradesh State Govt., headed by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has stalled the Samajwadi Pension Scheme of the previous Samajwadi Party Govt. under Akhilesh Yadav. He has ordered the officials to conduct a detailed review of this scheme to ascertain whether the beneficiaries are deserving candidates fulfilling the eligibility criterion.
- Samajwadi Pension Scheme was launched in year 2014 with an aim to provide financial assistance to 40 lakh below poverty line (BPL) category families in Uttar Pradesh. This yojana replaced the erstwhile Rani Laxmibai Pension Yojana.
- Under this scheme, BPL families were entitled to monthly pension of Rs. 500 per month for one year.
Haldia Port tops the list in the first ever ranking of ports on Sanitation parameteres
- The Haldia Port of West Bengal has emerged as the cleanest ports among Indian ports on sanitation parameters.
- The ranking of all the 13 Indian ports was conducted by the Quality Council of India. Haldia and Vizag ports receive the first and the second rank.
- The ranking was based on the efforts made by these ports to address waste generating sources with respect to port operation, office area, and township area.
Kerala makes Malayalam mandatory in school
The Kerala government has announced to make Malayalam language mandatory in all schools in the state.
- The new law will be applicable to schools. Those schools that violated the law will have to pay huge fines.
- The usage of Malayalam as official language has been made compulsory in all government offices from May 1.
- It would be applicable in government institutions, public sector undertakings, self-governing institution in the cooperative sector.
- This announcement was made by Pinarayi Vijayan.Malayalam would not be mandatory for foreign students.
- The new rule will be applicable up to Class X in all the government including those affiliated to CBSE and ICSE streams.
- If any school imposes restriction than the law also allow government to impose penalty of Rs.5000.
- To know Malayalam is a mandatory requirement in order to get government job in Kerala.
After MP CM Shivraj , Chhattisgarh’s Raman Singh announces phased liquor ban
- Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh impose liquor ban in Chhattisgarh after his meeting with Bihar Chief minister Nitishkumar.
- Chhattisgarh CM announced and imposes a ban on liquor. He made the announcement in Munger.
- He will first impose a ban on villages which has a population of more than 3000.
- Chhattisgarh has now become the second state to declare a ban on alcohol.
- The CM mentioned in his speech that first phase has already done with the government closing down all the liquor shops located within a radius of 5 km.
- In the next phase the liquor shops will not be allowed to open residential areas, near educational institutes and religious places.
- Currently Bihar and Gujarat are the only states that have a total ban on alcohol.
G20 Ministers issue declaration on Shaping Digitalisation for an Interconnected World
A ministerial conference of G20 ministers in charge of digitalisation was held on 6th and 7th April, 2017 in Dusseldorf, Germany. This was the first such meeting of G20 ministers responsible for digitalisation. They have issued a declaration on ‘Shaping Digitalisation for an Interconnected World’, which lays out priorities and course of action.
- The declaration acknowledged that digital economies have the potential to contribute to achieving the goals of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
- For realising this potential, digital economy should be geared towards developing following components:
- Broadband connectivity should be available at affordable rates to larger number of people
- Digital literacy and skills should be improved
- Greater push should be provided to digital entrepreneurship
- Adoption of digital technologies and services should be encouraged
100 Years of Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram Celebrated in London
The Hundredth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram was celebrated in London to retell Gandhi’s story with some interesting visual elements to the Internet generation.
- Sabarmati Ashram: The Home of Gandhi’s Experiments with Truth was screened at the Nehru centre.
- It is written and produced by senior NRI journalist Vijay Rana.
- The film was about how Gandhi set up this ashram in 1917 on the banks of Sabarmati River.
- Many revolutionary ideas were evolved in this ashram like economic liberation through spinning wheel and the home spun khadi fight social evils like untouchability, a boycott of foreign goods, non-cooperation, and Salt law.
- The film throws light on Gandhi’s life in the Ashram.It appropriately reflected the values such as non-violence , peace, love and harmony.
Iran, Saudi Arabia, China top world execution list 2016
- Amnesty International published the review stated that China executed the most people in 2016, followed by Iran and Saudi Arabia.
- The china alone killed thousands of people when 23 countries together executed 1032, the MENA region has executed the majority of 852 numbers.
- Amnesty ‘s East Asia Director Nicholas Bequelin stated that china has refused to release the number of execution but is believed to execute many thousands of people every year.
- According to the report, the total number of executions happened worldwide had dropped by 37 percent compared to 2015. For the first time in a decade, the United States was not included in the top five countries on the list.
- Executions were dropped 28 percent from the previous year in the Middle East. Iran alone executed at least 567 people, while Saudi Arabia carried out at least 154 executions.
- In 2015, the oil-rich Gulf state executed 158 people, reaching its highest figure since 1995.Egypt is doubling its number of executions from 22 in 2015 to 44 in 2016.Political activists by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Egypt ranked sixth on the report.
Banking and Finance
Manappuram Finance launched co-branded prepaid cards with Yes bank
- In its efforts to promote digital financial transactions, the Kerala-based NBFC Manappuram Finance will launch its own co-branded prepaid card in tie-up with YES Bank.
- The ‘Manappuram YES Bank Prepaid Money Card’ can be pre-loaded up to a maximum amount of Rs. 50,000 and then be used to withdraw money from all ATMs. As the card works on the popular MasterCard and RuPay networks, it can also be used for online transactions and at merchant establishments with PoS terminals.
- The company will issue the prepaid cards to its entire base of 20 lakh customers and link their existing gold loan accounts to the card. This will enable them to withdraw money from ATMs across India. Moreover, customers can also withdraw money from any of the 3,300 branches of Manappuram Finance, a feature unique to this card.
- The card can be reloaded directly at all Manappuram branches and can also be purchased by non-customers by furnishing their mobile number and KYC document as prescribed by the RBI.
- The card will be formally launched on Saturday, April 15, at the company’s head office at Valappad by V.P.Nandakumar, MD and CEO.
Postal Dept, SBI join hands to promote cashless transactions
- The Department of Posts has joined hands with the State Bank of India to promote cashless transactions like ‘SBI buddy e-wallet’ and POS machines.
- Swain said the installation of SBI Buddy e-wallet and POS Machines will make the transactions easy through digital payments and cashless transactions in post offices.
- PK Swain, Chief Postmaster General, Punjab Circle and Anil Kishora, Chief General Manager, SBI, Chandigarh dedicated SBI buddy e-wallet and SBI POS machines at Chandigarh General Post Office for the general public.
Awards and Recognition
President Of India Presents National Geoscience Awards 2016
On April 12, 2017, President Pranab Mukherjee conferred National Geoscience Awards 2016 on 27 bright Geo-scientists of India. The awards were conferred at a ceremony held in Rashtrapati Bhawan.
The National Geoscience Awards 2016 comprises one Young Scientist Award and 16 individual/team awards in 11 fields of geosciences.
Young Scientist Award – 2016: Dr. Abhishek Saha, NIO, Goa
Appointments & Resigns
Actress Kristin Davis appointed UNHCR goodwill ambassador
- UNHCR announced the appointment of Kristin Davis who is an admirable actress and Philanthropist as its goodwill Ambassador.
- American actress Kristin Davis one of the stars of the television series was appointed Goodwill Ambassador of the high commissioner of UN on refugees.
- Davis has partnered with the UN for 3 years.
- UNHCR Goodwill Ambassadors are celebrity representatives of the office of the UN High Commissioner for refugees who use their talent and fame for supporting refugees.
Govt. appoints 2 more MDs at LIC- B Venugopal, Sunita Sharma
- . B Venugopal and Sunita Sharma appointed by the Government as Managing Directors to the nation’s largest financial powerhouse LIC for a period of nearly two years.
- . Venugopal is currently heading the Western zone of LIC in Mumbai, Sharma is the managing director of its subsidiary, LIC HOUSING FINANCE. Venugopal took over as the head of the Mumbai zone last year, where as Sharma has been heading LICHFL since November 2013.
- Now LIC has four MDs including of Usha Sangwan and Hemant Bhargava, who was appointed in mid-February.
- Three major portfolio of investments, personnel and marketing will be reassigned among the four. Three divisions of investment such as operations, risk management & research and monitoring will be redistributed among four.
India, Georgia exploring options for free trade agreements
- India and Georgia signed a joint statement on the launch of Joint feasibility study on the bilateral free trade agreement.
- The agreement was signed between the ministry of Economy and sustainable development of Georgia Giorgi Gakharia and the Union minister of Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman in New Delhi.
- The joint statement was signed to promote economic, trade and investment relations between the two countries.
- Its objective to create a favourable condition for bilateral economic cooperation.
- Purpose is to provide more opportunity in Free Trade agreement.
- After the completion of Joint Feasibility study India and Georgia proceed with negotiations on Free Trade agreement.
Nokia inks Mous with Airtel and BSNL to bring 5G network in India
Nokia has signed a Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) with Indian telecom Airtel and BSNL.
- Nokia would expand their collaborative technology partnership to work on 5G technology standard and management of connected devices.
- 5G connectivity is expected to take place during 2019-2020.
- The MoU will help BSNL to draw a framework from the current network to futuristic 5G network.
- Nokia is also setting up an experience centre in Bengaluru.
- To better understand the stakeholder requirements for 5G in India.India to start trials by 2018.
- Nokia is working with BSNL to set up the foundation for the 5G trials.5G services with 20GPS speed to India by 2019.
BHEL and Indian Railways tie-up for rooftop SPV systems
- The agreement of 2 MWp Roof Top SPV Systems to be installed at Diesel loco Modernization Works (DMW), Patiala was signed between Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited BHEL & IROAF (Indian Railways Organisation for Alternate Fuels) in the presence of Mr. Amitabh Mathur, Director (IS &P), BHEL and Mr. Ravinder Gupta CAO (IROAF).
- The contract predicted the Design, supply, installation, testing & commissioning of grid connected roof top solar photo voltaic power plant with all the electrical and associated equipment including civil works and also includes 5 years’ operation & maintenance.
- The 2 MWp SPV RTS is to be installed within 9 months. It has enhanced BHEL’s Roof Top SPV project portfolio to 10 MWp.
Science and Technology
Haryana launches e-sewa app to provide information about welfare schemes
Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal has launched an mobile application named ‘e-Sewa’ to provide information about more than 250 schemes and programmes of 30 different departments
The Deputy Commissioner of Ambala, Prabhjot Singh‘s team was the developer of ‘e-Sewa’ app.
- People can get the information about various welfare schemes and programmes on their mobile phones
- They can also check the status of their complaint on CM Window and also give their suggestions on the app
- Other information like documents required, requisite fee and process of application has also available.
- Important contact numbers including all Deputy Commissioners, Additional Deputy Commissioners, Sub Divisional Magistrates, General Manager, Roadways have been made available on the mobile app.
Ex-Union minister and Badminton Association of India chief Akhilesh Das Gupta dies at 56
- Former Union minister and Congress leader Akhilesh Das Gupta, 56 died due to cardiac arrest in Lucknow.
- Fifty-six-year-old Gupta, the son of former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Banarasi Das Gupta, was a former national level badminton player.
- He was a three-time Rajya Sabha member and the minister of steel in the Manmohan Singh government between 2004 and 2009.
- Gupta was Mayor of Lucknow from May 1993 to November 1995.He was arrested for corruption connected to the 2010 Commonwealth Games and he became the President of the Badminton Association of India (BAI) in 2012
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