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All India Radio News Summary: 04 OCTOBER 2017

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All India Radio News Summary: 04 OCTOBER 2017


  1. India and Bangladesh to sign third line of credit agreement involving 4.5 billion dollars for infrastructure and social sector development.

India and Bangladesh signed the third line of credit agreement involving 4.5 billion dollar to be spent for its infrastructure and social sector development.

  • The line of credit agreement was announced during Bangladesh Prime Minister’s recent New Delhi visit.
  • The line of credit would be signed in the presence of Union Finance Minister who is on a 3-day visit to Bangladesh.
  • He will also address a gathering on ‘Macroeconomic initiatives of the Indian economy before launching a scheme of cashless visa services of the Indian High Commission.  
  • Addressing a programme on Bangladesh-India trade relations in Dhaka, the Finance Minister said, both the countries should boost trade relations to reflect their rich common roots.
  • FM said, New Delhi and Dhaka have been extremely focused on internal progress, and both governments have been closely interacting to realize the potential of a rich economic relationship.

 

  1. Rail passengers will continue to enjoy service charge exemption on e-tickets till March next year

The government had waived service charges in November last year after demonetisation to encourage digital modes of booking. The facility had been first extended till the 30th of June and then the 30th of September.

  • The Railway Board has directed Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) that the benefits are extended till March next year.
  • Service charge on booking train tickets online through IRCTC ranges from 20 to 40 rupees per ticket.

 

Railway administration has launched a multidisciplinary audit of all suburban train stations in and around Mumbai. The administration started the audit four days after the Elphinstone Road station stampede which claimed 23 lives. Central Railway has formed eight teams and Western Railway five teams for the task. They have roped in representatives of five municipal corporations of Mumbai, including the BMC.

 

  1. Prime Minister says, his government is fully committed to reverse the decline in GDP growth registered in the April-June quarter; Assures of all steps to maintain financial stability and accelerate economic growth. 

Prime Minister today attacked the opposition for criticism of GDP growth rate and said that the growth rate had slipped to 5.7 per cent or below eight times in six years of the previous Government. He said, the country’s economy has also seen such quarters, when the growth rate had declined to 0.2 per cent and 1.5 per cent.

PM said,

  • Such a decline was more dangerous for the economy, because in these years India was battling higher inflation, Higher Current Account Deficit and Higher Fiscal Deficit.
  • There are a handful of people in the country, who have been working to weaken the reputation and honest social structure of the country.
  • To remove these people from the system and institutions, the government have started sanitation campaign from the first day.
  • The Prime Minister maintained that not everything that a critic says is wrong but one should refrain from creating a negative environment in the country.
  • His government constituted the Special Investigation Team to deal with black money on the first day of the inception of the Government.
  • Today’s economy is running with low cash due to the relentless hard work of the government.
  • After demonetization, cash to GDP ratio came down to 9 percent from 12 per cent.
  • It is true that after achieving an average growth of 7.5 per cent in the last three years, the economy has witnessed a decrease in GDP growth in the April-June quarter this year, but the government is fully committed to reverse this trend.
  • Double digit inflation has come down to less than 3 per cent and Current Account Deficit has been brought down to 2.5 per cent.
  • Fiscal deficit has also been reduced to 3.5 per cent. 
  • The Government has taken several important decisions related to reform and the process will continue and the country’s financial stability will be maintained.

He reiterated that the Government will continue to take every necessary step to increase investment and accelerate economic growth. He said, foreign investment in the country has been the highest in the last three years since the opening of economy.

The Prime Minister assured people that the steps taken by the government are to keep the country in a new league of development in the coming years. He said, the present government understands the cost of the hard-earned money of people and its policies and schemes are aimed at making life easier for the poor and the middle class and also saving their money.

He assured the business community that the government is ready to make changes to ease any bottlenecks in the Goods and Services Tax, GST. He said, he will not let the present problems jeopardize the future of the country.

He said, the policy decisions in the field of affordable housing are unprecedented. The government has spent more than 10,600 crore rupees on the new and renewable energy sector.

 

  1. US backs India’s stand on China’s One Belt One Road; says it passes through a disputed territory.

The Trump administration threw its weight behind India’s opposition to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, CPEC, under China’s One Belt One Road (OBOR) plan saying it passes through a disputed territory and no country should put itself in a position of dictating the Belt and Road initiative.

US Defence Secretary told this to members of the Senate Armed Services Committee. Having returned from his maiden trip to India last week wherein he met his counterpart Defence minister and Prime Minister, US defence secretary appeared to be a strong opponent of China’s ambitious OBOR initiative.

India skipped the One Belt One Road Forum, in May this year due to its sovereignty concerns over CPEC. This project passes through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

  1. Law and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad says linking bank accounts with Aadhar will help catch money launderers and fake account holders.

Law and IT Minister said that linking bank accounts with Aadhar will help catch money launderers and fake account holders. Speaking at cyber security conference organised by Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi, Minister said,

  • 60 lakh bank accounts have already been linked to Aadhar. The government has saved 58,000 crore rupees under direct benefit transfer scheme, detected 3 crore fake gas connections and close to 2.7 crore ration cards with help of Aadhar card.
  • The Minister said, government is bringing most of the services online.

 

  1. Pakistan’s intelligence agency, ISI, has connections with terrorist groups and runs its own foreign policy, says top US General

A top US General said Pakistan’s intelligence agency, ISI, has connections with terrorist groups and runs its own foreign policy.

  • During a Congressional hearing, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff told members of the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee that it is clear to him that ISI has connections with terrorist groups.
  • He said a multilateral approach might help in bringing changes in Pakistan’s behaviour.
  • Meanwhile, acknowledging for the first time in public domain, Defence Secretary said that ISI runs its own policy and does not seem to be controlled by the federal government. Pakistan has denied the allegations.

 

  1. MoU between India and Switzerland on Technical Cooperation in Rail Sector

Cabinet approved MoU between India and Switzerland on Technical Cooperation in Rail Sector. The  MoU will enable technical cooperation in the traction rolling stock, EMU and train sets. It will also cover railway electrification equipment, train scheduling and operation improvement, railway station modernization, multimodal transport and tunnelling technology.

  • The Cabinet also provided ex-post facto approval to the MoU between India and Myanmar on up gradation of the Women’s Police Training Centre at Yamethin, Myanmar.
  • Cabinet has provided its approval for the ratification of the Extradition Treaty between India and Lithuania.
    • The Treaty would provide a legal framework for seeking extradition of terrorists, economic offenders and other criminals from and to Lithuania.
    • It would help in extradition of fugitive criminals including terrorists for criminal prosecutions from Lithuania who may have committed crimes against India.
  • Cabinet also gave ex-post facto approval to the renaming of Kandla Port as Deendayal Port.

 

  1. The Indian diaspora has an important role in building bridges between India and the world.

President said rise of India is opening new opportunities for collaborations and the Indian diaspora has an important role in building bridges between India and the world.

  • Addressing the Indian community in Djibouti City the President asked the Indian diaspora not to leave their roots.
  • He said it’s a great honour for him to be the first Indian president to visit the African country.
  • The president also thanked Djibouti for helping India in evacuating Indians from Yemen in 2015.
  • He emphasised that Operation Rahat highlights India’s commitment to its people abroad.
  • Operation Rahat, the name given to the evacuation process in Yemen, was orchestrated from the African nation of Djibouti, which lies on the other side of the Gulf of Aden from Yemen

 

  1. Vice president said the ISRO has been achieving good results by taking up space research at a lowest cost

Vice president said the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has been achieving good results by taking up space research at a lowest cost, compared to other countries.

  • He expressed confidence that the country will take up manned space projects in near future besides sending rovers to other planets and taking up Chandrayan-II.
  • He said while inaugurating the World Space Week at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.

 

By putting 104 satellites into the orbit in one go and placing the heaviest Indian satellite GSAT-19 weighing 3136 kgs this orbit earlier this year India Space scientists and technologies have not only done the country proud but made the world to sit up and take note of its accomplishments.

 

He said common man is presently able to get the fruits of space research in the form of disaster warnings, better telecom and education services because of the efforts made by scientists like Satish Dhawan and Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam.

 

  1. Sports Minister has announced the launch of National School and College Games

Sports Minister has announced the launch of National School and College Games to tap talent from every nook and corner of the country.

 

Delivering his speech at a felicitation function of the Indian football team for the U-17 World Cup, which begins on Friday, he said, the youth of this country will have to be provided platforms to show their talent.

 

Conducting National Khelo India School games in our country and raise to the level of the Asian games or Pan America games so that there is a huge platform for the children who are studying in schools to come and play in that and participate in the platform.

 

  1. Dungarpur has become the first open defecation free tribal district of Rajastan

In Rajasthan, Dungarpur has become the first open defecation free tribal district of the state. District administration has achieved the goal of building 2 lakh 85 thousand toilets in 291 panchayats.

  • Having more than 65 percent tribal population, objective of making the district ODF has been acquired before the time limit by the District Administration with continues awareness campaign and public participation.
  • Dungarpur, has also become the first ODF district of Udaipur division.
  • Dungarpur city has also been declared the cleanest city of the state for two consecutive years for the year 2016 and 2017. 

 

  1. RBI keeps interest rates unchanged; Lowers growth forecast to 6.7 per cent

The Reserve Bank kept interest rate unchanged as was widely expected in view of upward trend in inflation even as it cut the growth forecast to 6.7 per cent for the current fiscal.

  • Consequently, the repo rate, at which it lends to banks, will stand at 6 per cent.
  • The reverse repo, at which RBI borrows from banks will continue to be at 5.75 per cent, it said at the fourth bi-monthly policy review.
  • The bank lowered to 6.7 per cent the economic growth projection for 2017-18 from its August forecast of 7.3 per cent in view of issues with GST implementation and lower kharif output estimates.
  • RBI also indicated a rise in inflation. It said, the inflation is expected to rise from its current level and range between 4.2 to 4.6 percent in the second half of this year. 

 

After the release of the fourth bi-monthly policy decision of 2017-2018, RBI Governor said,

  • The Monetary Policy Committee reviewed evolving macro-economic and financial conditions.
  • The MPC reviewed current and evolving macro-economic and financial conditions and decided to keep the policy rate unchanged at 6 percent while maintaining a neutral monetary policy stance, this was by a majority of 5-1.
  • The RBI governor expressed concern about the loss of momentum of growth in the early months of 2017-18 especially the persisting weakness in manufacturing.

 

The Government has taken note of the decision of the RBI Monetary Policy Committee to keep the policy rate and policy stance unchanged.

 

  1. Centre has urged the state governments to reduce the VAT on Petrol and Diesel by five percent

The Centre has urged the state governments to reduce the VAT on Petrol and Diesel by five percent to provide more relief to the consumers.  

  • Petroleum Minister said, the states are ultimate beneficiary of taxes levied on Petrol and Diesel and they should take responsibility like the central government in the interest of the consumers.
  • He said, the Finance Minister will be writing to all the states on slashing VAT levied on the two products.
  • The Petroleum Minister said, the Centre is committed to protect the interest of farmers and consumers in the country. The excise duty on Petrol and Diesel has been reduced by two rupees per litre by the Central government, to cushion the impact of rising international prices of crude oil and the resultant hike in retail prices of petrol and diesel.

 

  1. Government sets up a high-level committee for proper management of water resources in North-Eastern region

The Centre has set up a high-level committee for proper management of water resources in the North-Eastern region. The Committee will be headed by NITI Aayog Vice Chairman.

  • It will facilitate optimising benefits of appropriate water management in the form of hydro-electric power, agriculture, bio-diversity conservation, reduced flood damage erosion, inland water transport, forestry, fishery and eco-tourism.
  • The committee is also tasked with spelling out actionable steps for optimizing water resources in the region and chalking out an action plan for dovetailing of Central schemes. 

The high-level committee will submit its report by June next year. The panel has been formed in the wake of Prime Minister’s announcement to set up a high level committee for holistic management of water resources in the north east during his visit to Guwahati in August this year.

 

  1. Scientists Jacques Dubochet, Joachim Frank and Richard Henderson win Nobel Prize for chemistry for development of cryo-electron microscopy.

The 2017 Nobel Prize in chemistry has been awarded to three scientists for improving the images made of biological molecules. 

 

Jacques Dubochet from Switzerland, Joachim Frank of the United States and Richard Henderson from UK developed a technique called cryo-electron microscopy, which simplifies the process for looking at the machinery of life.