Important Current affairs dated 6th March 2017 for Competitive Exams in India.
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Small Farmers’ Agriculture-Business Consortium (SFAC)
- Small Farmers’ Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC) was established in 1994. Its fundamental objective is to link the small farmers to agricultural value chain, which includes investments, technology and markets in association with private, corporate or cooperative sector.
- It also provides capital support in the form of Venture Capital Assistance and Project Development Facility. One of the mandates of SFAC is to promote the farmer producer organisations (FPOs) and their integration in agriculture value chain.
- Over the period of time, the SFAC has emerged as a Developmental Institution which deals with agriculture in its wider connotation, including fisheries and horticulture.
- The beneficiaries are agripreneurs (Individuals, farmers, producer groups, partnership, propriety firms, Self Help Groups, companies etc.) to set up agribusiness ventures in close association with banks.
6th April: International Day of Sport for Development and Peace
- 6 April was declared as the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP) by the UN General Assembly.
- On the occasion of the 2017 International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP), the United Nations Office on Sport for Development and Peace (UNOSDP) launches the digital campaign #WePlayTogether to encourage organizations and individuals.
Yogi Adityanath govt waives Rs 36,359-crore loan for UP farmers
- The BJP-led government in Uttar Pradesh decided to waive off crop loans of up to Rs 1 lakh of small and marginal farmers in the state.
- About 92.5% of the state’s farmers fall in the small and marginal categories. Besides, the cabinet also decided to write off Rs 5,630 crore in non-performing assets (NPAs) of 700,000 farmers.
Haryana government to provide Rs 21,000 to families for third girl child
- Haryana government has decided to provide a one-time grant of Rs 21,000 to all those families whose third girl child was born after August 24, 2015, under the ‘Aapki Beti, Hamari Beti’ scheme.
- Under the scheme, the eligible families will receive the amount irrespective of their caste, creed, religion, income and number of sons.
A MoU was signed here today between Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) and National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) for geotagging of agriculture land
- A MoU was signed here today between Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) and National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) for geotagging of agriculture land.
- Shri Radha Mohan Singh said that Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) works for the development of Agriculture & allied sectors by motivating the states.
- More than 1.5 lakh assets have been created/ developed under this scheme in agriculture, horticulture, livestock, fisheries and dairy sectors. It is imperative to formulate a national index of the assets to understand them, systemize them and to reduce the gap between demand and supply.
- Being aware of the realistic status of assets will not only be helpful in monitoring and utilising, but also be extremely useful in formulating development schemes in the agriculture sector.Agriculture Minister added that it will also help in avoiding duplication and pave the way for harmonising a balance between the various schemes of the ministry.
- Agriculture Minister added that it will also help in avoiding duplication and pave the way for harmonising a balance between the various schemes of the ministry.
- Shri Radha Mohan Singh further added that there is unlimited scope for agriculture development by utilising satellite and remote sensing technologies. The government wants farmers to avail the benefits provided by these technologies. Shri Singh said that by utilising space-related technologies farmers will get timely information about pesticide/residue testing labs, storage infrastructure and agriculture markets.
- The government wants farmers to avail the benefits provided by these technologies. Shri Singh said that by utilising space-related technologies farmers will get timely information about pesticide/residue testing labs, storage infrastructure and agriculture markets.
- Shri Singh said that by utilising space-related technologies farmers will get timely information about pesticide/residue testing labs, storage infrastructure and agriculture markets.
- Agriculture Minister informed that the space technology needs to be developed in the areas such as land resource mapping, pesticides management, soil health mapping, crop yield estimation as well as the identification and assessment of floods like calamities, inland fisheries, animal species identification and sheep rearing and when the technology is developed, the farmers can enjoy quick and instant benefits.
8-year-old girl found living with a troop of monkeys in forest
- The Uttar Pradesh Police have found a girl, 8, in the Motipur range of Katarniaghat Wildlife Sanctuary, who is believed to have been living with a troop of monkeys.
- She is being treated at a district hospital. The girl was found two months back,eats and walks like animals, and runs away on seeing humans.
- The doctors in charge of her care said she gets scared by humans and often gets violent.
- They said the minor has been taught to walk but she frequently uses her hands and legs to get around. She can neither speak nor write.
Farm loan waiver undermines honest credit culture
Two days after Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath announced a Rs 36,359-crore farm loan waiver scheme, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor Urjit Patel said that any such move “undermines an honest credit culture” and could “affect the national balance sheet”.
Speaking at a press conference to announce the bi-monthly monetary policy, Patel also confirmed that the repo rate, or the rate at which banks borrow from the RBI, remained unchanged at 6.25 per cent. However, the central bank has increased the reverse repo rate, the rate at which banks lend funds to the RBI, by 0.25 per cent to 6 per cent, given the excess liquidity in the system.
FMCG highest paying industry in India: Randstad survey
- The FMCG industry has emerged as the highest paying industry in India with an average annual cost to company (CTC) of Rs. 11.3 lakh across all levels and functions.
- Robust demand for qualified personnel in sales, marketing and supply chain management roles coupled with close to 30 per cent of jobs being posted in over 10 lakh categories, is being seen as the primary driver for the FMCG industry to emerge a winner.
- FMCG is followed by power and the IT sector, where employees across all levels and functions earn average annual salaries at Rs. 9.8 lakh and Rs. 9.3 lakh, respectively, the 2017 Salary Trends Study.
- Pharma and healthcare, offering an average annual CTC of Rs. 8.8 lakh, and telecom (at Rs. 8.7 lakh) take the fourth and fifth positions in the list of India’s most lucrative industries.
India, UK to set up 240 mn pound fund for green energy
- India and the UK decided to set up a 240 million pound fund to finance clean energy projects.
- The Green Growth Equity Fund will be a sub-fund of NIIF. India had in 2015 set up the Rs 40,000 crore National Infrastructure and Investment Fund (NIIF) to finance greenfield as well as brownfield projects.
- The fund will focus initial investments in India’s rapidly growing energy and renewables market.
India allows duty-free imports of 500,000 tonnes of raw sugar
- The Centre said it will allow duty-free import of raw sugar up to 5 lakh tonne, till June 12.
- The decision seeks to address regional production gaps and maintain domestic prices at reasonable levels, according to Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Ram Vilas Pawan.
Japan Officially Recognises Bitcoin as Currency
- Bitcoin has finally gained the recognition of a mainstream currency along the lines of other fiat currencies.
- The privilege follows the implementation of a new law in Japan which categorizes Bitcoin as a legal payment option within the country.
Banking and Finance
ADB lends $175 m loan to Power Grid Corporation
- The Manila-headquartered Asian Development Bank (ADB) lends a $175 million loan to the Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd.
- The project will improve the capacity and efficiency of interstate transmission networks, particularly in transmitting the electricity generated from the new solar parks to the national grid.
IDBI Bank cuts deposit rates by up to 75 bps
- With the banking system reeling under surplus liquidity, IDBI Bank has reduced interest rates, ranging from 50 to 75 basis points, on retail term deposits (RTD) with effect from April 5.
- In the case of the first seven maturity buckets, starting from 15-30 days to one-two years, the public sector bank has cut interest rates by 50 basis points across the board. One basis point equals one-hundredth of a percentage point.
- Following the rate cut, the highest interest rate that the bank now offers is 6.40 per cent (earlier 6.90 per cent) on deposits of one-two years maturity.
- In the case of the next six maturity slabs, starting from more than two years to less than three years and more than 10 years and up to 20 years, IDBI Bank has effected a steeper rate cut of 75 basis points.
- Deposits in these maturity slabs will fetch a uniform interest rate of 6 per cent, compared with 6.75 per cent earlier.
Awards and Recognition
Heritage Heroes Award
- The Heritage Heroes award aims to recognise the outstanding efforts of people, of who make efforts to conserved natural World Heritage sites despite life-threatening situations.
- Assam-based ecologist and conservation activist Bibhuti Lahkar has won prestigious
- Heritage Heroes Award’ of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
- For the past two decades Lahkar, has been working to save the grasslands, flora and fauna of Manas National Park area.
Appointments & Resigns
NTPC appoints Sanjeev Kishore as head for Kudgi project
- NTPC has appointed Sanjeev Kishore as Group General Manager at Kudgi Super thermal Power Project, Karnataka.
- Kishore joined the services of NTPC in 1984 and has served in various capacities of NTPC projects.
Malvika Sinha appointed RBI Executive Director
- The Reserve Bank has appointed Malvika Sinha as Executive Director following the appointment of B P Kanungo as Deputy Governor.
- Sinha took charge on April 3.
- RBI said that As Executive Director, Malvika Sinh will look after foreign exchange department, department of government and bank accounts and internal debt management wing.
- Kanungo was Executive Director of the Reserve Bank before being elevated to the post of Deputy Governor.
- Sinha had joined the Reserve Bank in 1982 and as a career central banker served in the areas of regulation and supervision, foreign exchange and government and bank accounts.
- Prior to being promoted as ED, she was Principal Chief General Manager, Department of Cooperative Banking Supervision in the Reserve Bank.
Raman Roy is new Nasscom chairman
- The National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) said Raman Roy has been appointed as its chairman for 2017-2018.
- Roy, Chairman and Managing Director of Quatrro, has been a member of Nasscom’s Executive Council and was the vice-chairman for 2016-17.
- He will take on the new role from April 6 (Thursday) taking over from CP Gurnani (Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Tech Mahindra).
- Nasscom also announced the appointment of Rishad Premji, Chief Strategy Officer and Member of the Board, Wipro Limited, as the Vice Chairman of Nasscom for 2017-18.
Aditya Birla Group gets RBI licence to start payments bank
- The Aditya Birla Group today said it has received licence from the Reserve Bank of India to start payments bank.
- Headed by Kumar Mangalam Birla, the group’s outfit Aditya Birla Nuvo had set up a 51:49 joint venture — Aditya Birla Idea Payments Bank Ltd — with telecom major Idea Cellular to launch payments bank services in the country.
- At present, Airtel and India Post are offering payments bank services in the country.
- With the objective of deepening financial inclusion, RBI kicked off an era of differentiated banking by allowing SFBs (small finance banks) and PBs (payments banks) to start services.
- A total of 21 entities were given in-principle nod, including 11 for payments banks.
India’s ranks 7th in world’s largest tourism economy in terms of GDP
- India’s Travel & Tourism sector ranks 7th in the world in terms of its total contribution to the country’s GDP, shows a new report by the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).
- According to the new data, Travel & Tourism generated INR14.1 trillion (USD208.9 billion) in 2016, which is the world’s 7th largest in terms of absolute size, the sum is equivalent to 9.6% of India’s GDP.
- Additionally, the sector supported 40.3 million jobs in 2016, which ranks India 2nd in the world in terms of total employment supported by Travel & Tourism.
- The sector accounts for 9.3% of the country’s total jobs. India’s Travel & Tourism sector was also the fastest growing amongst the G20 countries, growing by 8.5% in 2016.
- A further 6.7% growth is forecast for 2017. India’s strong Travel & Tourism figures are predominantly generated by domestic travel, which accounts for 88% of the sector’s contribution to GDP in 2016.
Virat Kohli crowned Wisden’s ‘king of the willow’ for 2016
- India’s prodigious run machine Virat Kolhi was on Wednesday named Wisden’s Leading Cricketer in the World for 2016, adding another feather to his abundantly decorated cap.
- Kohli amassed 1,215 Test runs last year at a stupendous average of 75.93. Ten ODI appearances fetched him 739 runs at 92.37, while he scored 641 T20 International runs at 106.83. Only six batsmen have ever scored more international runs in a calendar year than Kohli, but none of them had as high an average.
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