20 September 2016 – Current Affairs

India Successfully test-fires Barak 8 Surface-to-Air Missile

Today, India has successfully test-fired the most advanced surface-to-air missile ‘Barak-8‘ from a mobile launcher at the Integrated Test Range in Chandipur in Balasore district,Odisha.

  • The 4.5-meter nuclear capable ballistic missile weighs around 3 tonnes and can carry a payload of 70 kilograms developed jointly with Israel.
  • The missile swung into action after getting a signal from the radars to intercept a moving aerial target supported by an unmanned air vehicle ‘Banshee’ over the Bay of Bengal.

Union govt. announces the third list of smart cities

Union Minister of Urban Development Venkaiah Naidu has announced the third list of smart cities. The new list accommodates 27 cities from 12 states
Five cities from Maharashtra (Thane, Nashik, Nagpur, Kalyan-Dombivali and Aurangabad), four from Tamil Nadu (Madurai, Salem, Thanjavur and Vellore) and Karnataka (Hubbali-Dharwad, Managaluru, Shivamogga and Tumkaru), three from Uttar Pradesh (Varanasi, Kanpur and Agra) , two each from Punjab (Amritsar and Ludhiana), Rajasthan (Kota and Ajmer) and Madhya Pradesh (Gwalior and Ujjain) and one each from Andhra Pradesh (Tirupati), Odisha (Rourkela), Gujarat (Vadodara), Nagaland (Kohima) and Sikkim (Namchi).
  • Each city will receive Central assistance of 200 crore rupees in the first year and 100 crore rupees over the three subsequent financial years.
  • Over 1 lakh 44 thousand crore rupees have been proposed for 60 cities under smart city plans.

Govt notifies new import policy for Marble & Travertine Blocks

The government has notified the new import policy for marble & travertine blocks Slabs. The policy will come into effect from 1st October.
  • The Minimum Import Price (MIP) for marble blocks has been reduced to 200 US dollar per ton.
  • The basic customs duty on import of marble and travertine blocks has been increased form 10%  to 40% to address the interest of domestic producers.

Indian Railways launches Yatri Mitra Sewa to help elderly, differently-abled

Indian Railways has launched “Yatri Mitra Sewa” in a move to make rail travel comfortable for elderly, differently-abled and ailing travellers.
  • It will facilitate access to wheelchairs, battery operated cars and porter services.
  • The service will be available at major railway stations across the country.

Note:- The service can be availed at the time of online booking of tickets, calling or messaging ‘139‘ or by simply dialing a dedicated mobile phone number to be activated for the purpose.

Two-day national labour meet kicks off in Odisha

Two-day national conference on labour has inaugurated by Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. The conference organised jointly by the Odisha Labour department and the International Labour Organisation.
  • This Labour meet has been attended by Labour Ministers and Chairpersons of Labour Welfare Boards of 29 states.
  • The conference will discuss how to manage the labour welfare boards and regulate child labour laws in a better and effective ways.

12% growth in foreign tourist arrivals in August

Foreign Tourist Arrivals have registered a growth of around 12% in August this year over the same period last year. According to Tourism Ministry, six  lakh seventy thousand foreign tourists arrived during the period.
  • Bangladesh accounts for highest share of tourist arrivals followed by US and UK.
  • Foreign exchange of around 13,000 crore rupees earned through tourism in August this year.

Charkhi Dadri is state’s 22nd district

Chief Minister of Haryana Manohar Lal Khattar has announced “Charkhi Dadri” as the 22nd district of Haryana.
  • At present, Charkhi Dadri is part of Bhiwani (state’s largest district) carved out on December 22, 1972.
  • The new district will have two Assembly constituencies Dadri and Badhra under its jurisdiction.

Monika Kapil Mohta appointed Ambassador to Sweden

Additional Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs Ms Monika Kapil Mohta has been appointed as the Ambassador of India to the Sweden. Ambassador is an accredited diplomat sent by a state as its permanent representative in a foreign country.

Note:

  • Mohta was born in New Delhi to Jai Singh Kapil and Vedna Kapil.
  • After completing her schooling from the Air Force School, she graduated from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University and obtained her Master’s degree from the same university.
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