26th March 2017, Important Daily Current Affairs

Important Current affairs dated 26th March 2017 for Competitive Exams in India.
Hello Readers, We bring you another issue of current affairs that covers the important news in Current Affairs Today Section.
Current Affairs help in your preparing yourself for the various Competitive Exams in India. UPSCSuccess.com wishes all the readers best of luck. These Current Affairs coverage will help you to Score Good Marks in Competitive Exams such as UPSC, and other PSCs.

Indian Affairs

PM addresses the 80th-anniversary celebrations of the Brahma Kumaris family via video conferencing

PM addresses the 80th-anniversary celebrations of the Brahma Kumaris family via video conferencing
  • The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, today addressed the 80th-anniversary celebrations of the Brahma Kumaris family, via video conferencing.
  • The Prime Minister paid his respects to Dada Lekhraj, the founder of Prajapita Brahmakumari Ishvariya Vishvidyalaya. He also praised Dadi Janki ji, describing her as a true Karma Yogi, who continues to serve society even at the age of 100 years.
  • The Prime Minister appreciated the work done by the Brahma Kumaris institution in many fields, including in solar energy.
  • The Prime Minister also touched upon themes such as Swachh Bharat, and LED lighting, and spoke of their benefits.

Government to create 2.5 lakh Dalit entrepreneurs under ‘Stand Up India’

Government to create 2.5 lakh Dalit entrepreneurs under ‘Stand Up India’
  • During the inauguration of the 5th National Industrial & Trade Fair organized by Dalit Indian Chamber Commerce & Industry (DICCI), Union Minister for MSME (Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises) Kalraj Mishra said that about 2.5 lakh SC/ST entrepreneurs would be created under the Centre’s Stand Up India initiative.
  • Under Stand-up India initiative, each of the 1.25 lakh bank branches would be encouraged to fund an SC/ST and woman entrepreneurs to create 2.5 lakh new entrepreneurs in the country.
  • There would be a special support structure for innovation-based start-ups, including funding from the government.
  • The government will unveil a blueprint for start-ups to ease the process of setting up new venture very shortly.
  • For urban SC/ST beneficiaries, margin money subsidy is provided at 25 percent of the project cost while it is 35 percent in rural areas.
  • As many as 292 PSUs in India have been mandated to procure 20 percent of their requirements from MSME sector. Of this, 4 percent has to be from Dalit enterprises, which translates into a sizable market.
  • The fair has 350 stalls, including 30 stalls belonging to the Central PSUs. Seminars on MSE procurement policy, B2B meetings, buyer-seller meetings are being organized on themes important for entrepreneurs, in addition to programs designed to promote business opportunities and capacity- building.

International Affairs

Mizoram, JICA sign pact for promoting sustainable agriculture

Mizoram, JICA sign pact for promoting sustainable agriculture
  • The Mizoram government and Japanese International Cooperative Agency (JICA) today signed an agreement on ‘Capacity Enhancement for Sustainable Agriculture and Irrigation Development.’
  • The Memorandum of Understanding was signed by top officials of Agriculture, Minor Irrigation, Horticulture and Soil and Water Conservation departments in the presence of state chief secretary Lalmalsawma.
  • JICA was represented by its team leader Satoru Fujita and four other officials both from Tokyo and Delhi.
  • Experts of the Japanese company would, on the companys own expense, undertake technical cooperation project in four rural development blocks in Aizawl, Kolasib, Serchhip and Champhai districts.
  • The JICA had conducted development study during 2013 and 2015 and had formulated a master plan covering 20 years and the technical cooperation project would commence from October this year and continue till September 2021.
  • Training programs would be conducted in Japan both for officials and farmers from Mizoram for three times during the period and the expenses would be borne by the Japanese government

Iran Signs Oil Contract With France’s Total

Iran Signs Oil Contract With France’s Total
  • Iran signed a confidential oil agreement with France’s Total to develop the South Azadegan oil field shared by Iran and Iraq.
  • Iran reached an agreement with the Japanese Inpex a decade ago to develop the oil field. However, the Japanese company quit the project as a result of U.S. sanctions against Iran’s energy sector because of the disputed nuclear issue.
  • Iran and the world powers clinched a nuclear deal in July last year which enables the country to re-engage with the world’s energy giants to develop its oil and gas fields.

Pakistan and Iran agree to boost cooperation on security, trade

Pakistan and Iran agree to boost cooperation on security, trade
  • Iran and Pakistan have mutually agreed to boost bilateral cooperation on regional security and trade.
  • Decision in this regard was taken by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif during intensive talks in Islamabad.
  •  Iranian President Hassan Rouhani is on official state visit to Pakistan and is the first visit by an Iranian head of state in 14 years.
  •  Both the countries have agreed to fight extremist and terrorist groups in their countries’ shared border. They also announced the opening of two new crossing points to encourage trade long hampered by sanctions.
  •  The opening will contribute to economic integration in the region and also promote tourism and people to people contacts.


Andhra govt set to inaugurate country’s first lift irrigation project

Andhra govt set to inaugurate country’s first lift irrigation project
  • Andhra Pradesh government is all set to inauguratePattiseema lift irrigation project, described as the first river linking project in country, connecting Godavari with Krishna in this lower riparian state, as it has been completed in a record time of one year.
  • The first pump of this Rs 1,300-crore project was installed and switched on in September, 2015, about six months after the project contract was awarded to Hyderabad-based Megha Engineering and Infrastructure Limited (MEIL) on condition to complete the entire project in one year.
  • The project was designed to lift 80 tmc (trillion metric cubic feet) of flood water in a span of 110 days during the flooding season between July and October from Godavari as was permitted by the Godavari Water Dispute Tribunal (GWDT) from the ongoing Polavaram Multi-purpose Irrigation Project.
  • The project contains 24 motors and 24 pumps of 6,300 HP and 5,300 HP respectively with a combined capacity to discharge 8,500 cusecs of water.The project requires 113 MW of power to run all the 24 pumps as each motor require 4.7 MW of power to lift the water.
  • According to MEIL chief general manager Rangarajan, the pumps will consume about 235 million units(mu) of power to lift 80 mc of water, and that translates into about Rs 131.6 crore in electricity bill as per the tariff of Rs 5.60 per unit proposed for the lift irrigation projects by AP Discogs for the year 2016-17.

4th unit of NTPC-Bihar govt owned 195-MW plant synchronized

4th unit of NTPC-Bihar govt owned 195-MW plant synchronized
  • The fourth unit of 195-MW Muzaffarpur Thermal Power Station (MTPS) has been successfully synchronized with the national grid.
  • The plant is owned by Kanti Bijlee Utpadan Nigam Ltd (KBUNL) a joint venture between NTPC and Bihar State Power Generation Company Ltd (BSPGCL) in which the two companies have 64.57 per cent and 35.43 per cent shares, respectively.
  • The third unit of 195 MW was synchronized on March 31, 2015.
  • State-run power equipment maker Bharat Heavy Electrical Engineering Ltd (BHEL) has been awarded the job for constructing two units of 195 MW under expansion project.
  • First unit of 110 MW at MTPS started generation in November, 2013 while the second of 110 MW started generation in November, 2014 after successful renovation and modernisation work carried out by BHEL. Both the units of each of 110 MW stopped generation in 2003.

Bihar will get 261 MW (67 per cent) from MTPS’ expansion project under which two units of 195 MW are being constructed at Kanti in Muzaffarpur district.
The plant is being constructed at the existing site of an old power plant which would draw water from the river Burhi Gandak, while it would get coal supply from a coal block of Central Coalfield Ltd (CCL) located in Jharkhand.

Science and Technology

ISRO Has Established GIRI Radar System In Andhra Pradesh

  • The Gadanki Ionospheric Radar Interferometer (GIRI) has been set up at the National Atmospheric Research Laboratory (NARL) near Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh by The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
  • NARL is an autonomous research institute of the Department of Space.
  •  Gadanki Ionospheric Radar Interferometer System is a 30 MHz radar system that will be engaged in meteor and space weather research in a comprehensive way.
  •  It consists of a rectangular antenna array of 160 two-element Yagi-antenna, arranged in a 20×8 matrix, 20 transmitter units, 6 digital receivers including data processing systems, a radar controller, and a host computer.
To carry out unattended observations towards studying the forcing from the sun like variation in solar flux, solar flare and magnetic storm on the ionospheric irregularities.

BHEL commissions 600 MW Thermal Unit in Telangana

BHEL commissions 600 MW Thermal Unit in Telangana
  • Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) has successfully commissioned a 600 MW coal-based thermal power plant in the state of Telangana.
  • The unit has been commissioned at the upcoming 2×600 MW Singareni Thermal Power Project (TPP) located in Adilabad district in Telangana.
  • The project is being developed by Singareni Collieries Company Limited (SCCL), India’s second largest coal mining company. With the commissioning of this unit, SCCL has now successfully diversified into the power generation business.
  • Significantly, this is the second thermal plant commissioned by BHELin Telangana within a short span of three months.
  • Earlier in December, 2015, BHEL had commissioned a 600 MW thermal power plant at Kakatiya in Telangana. The second unit of Singareni TPP is also in an advanced stage of construction and is expected to be commissioned shortly.
  • BHEL-built 600 MW rating sets comprise a 4 cylinder turbine, which is designed in-house, amply demonstrating the engineering prowess of BHEL.
  • So far, the company has contracted 21 sets of 600 MW each, of which 15 have already been commissioned.
  • A large number of similar sets ensure easy availability of spares and operator’s familiarity.
  • BHEL has a major contribution in Telangana’s Power Sector, with 85% of the coal-based power stations, amounting to 5,180 MW, having been commissioned by BHEL.
  •  BHEL has established its engineering prowess by successfully delivering higher-rated units such as 600 MW, 660 MW, 700 MW and 800 MW thermal sets, having a high degree of indigenization.

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