Current Affairs Today 17th September 2019 | Current Affairs News

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National Centre for Clean Coal Research & Development inaugurated at Bengaluru

  • The National Centre for Clean Coal Research and Development at Indian Institute of Science (IISc)-Bengaluru has opened.
  • The Central Government through Department of Science & Technology, has set up the the National Centre for Clean Coal Research and Development as a national-level consortium on clean coal R&D, led by IISc.
  • Dr Vardhan also opened an Interdisciplinary Centre for Energy Research(ICER) equipped with facilities for conducting a wide spectrum of energy research by knowledge network of elite researchers.

ECGC introduces Nirvik to enhance loan availability for exporters

  • Ministry of Commerce & Industry through Export Credit Guarantee Corporation (ECGC) has introduced a new Export Credit Insurance Scheme (ECIS) called NIRVIK to enhance loan availability and ease the lending process.
  • The Export Credit Guarantee Corporation of India (ECGC) provides credit guarantee of up to 60 percent loss. Under the new ‘NIRVIK’ (NiryatRinVikasYojna) scheme, the insurance cover guaranteed will cover up to 90 percent of the principal and interest. The insurance cover will include both pre and post-shipment credit.
  • The main aim behind introducing the scheme was to enhance accessibility and affordability of credit for exporters. The decision will help make Indian exports competitive and make ECGC procedures exporter friendly, benefiting MSME exporters with a new scheme for reimbursing taxes, reduced insurance cost and ease of doing business.
  • The insurance cover is expected to bring down the cost of credit due to capital relief, less provision requirement and liquidity due to quick settlement of claims and will ensure timely and adequate working capital to the export sector.
  • The Finance Ministry has decided to increase the insurance cover for banks up to 90 percent for working capital loans and moderation in premium incidence for the MSME sector to provide additional support to the banks in the wake of a global slowdown and rising NPAs.
  • The enhanced insurance cover will ensure that foreign and rupee export credit interest rates will be below 4 and 8 percent respectively for the exporters.
  • The existing insurance covers issued by the ECGC will continue for the existing customer banks and similar covers will also be made available to all other banks. All standard accounts covered under ECGC on the date of transition shall be eligible for the insurance cover under the ECIS.
  • The coverage has been increased to 90 percent from the present average of 60 percent for both principal and interest.
  • It will also cover both pre-shipment and post-shipment advances unlike the present system, where two different documents are issued by the ECGC.
  • The scheme also aims to simplify the procedure for settlement of claims and provisional payment of up to 50 percent within 30 days on production of proof of end-use of the advances in default by the Insured Bank.
  • The scheme will be in force for a period of 5-years and on the conclusion, the standard ECGC covers will be made available to the Banks with its regular features.
Minister of Railways &Minister of Commerce and Industry
Union Minister PiyushGoyal
Constituency RajyaSabha (Maharashtra)

Government launches steel import monitoring system

  • The government launched a steel import monitoring system (SIMS) to provide advance information about steel imports to various stakeholders including producers and importers to have effective policy interventions.
  • Minister of Commerce and Industry PiyushGoyal and Hardeep Singh Puri launched the system developed in consultation with Ministry of Steel on the pattern of US Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis (SIMA) system.
  • Importers of specified steel products will register in advance on the web portal of SIMS providing the necessary information. The registration will be online and automatic with no human intervention.
  • The information about the steel imports provided by importers on the SIMS will be monitored by the Steel Ministry.
  • SIMS will require importers to submit advance information in an online system for import of 284 steel tariff lines at 8-digit HS code in order to obtain an automatic registration number by paying a prescribed registration fee.

Government declared a train service to Bangladesh from Tripura by 2020

  • Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region said that the Railway link service between the Agartala-Akhaura in Bangladesh will be completed by 2020 for Development of Northeastern Region (DoNER).
  • The declaration was announced during the meeting by the Minister of DoNER Dr Jitendra Singh and senior officers of the Ministry which was held in Delhi.
  • The Bangladesh railway link project is funded by the Ministry of DoNER. The cost allocated for the project is Rs 972.52 crores. The project can link Agartala with Bangladesh Railway Network at Akhaura.
  • It will cut the traveling time period for passenger and goods movement from Kolkata to Agartala of 38 hours to 15 hours. Maitree categorical is already running between Kolkata and Dhaka which is now extended to Agartala.
  • Out of 15.19 Acre of land at Nischintpur Yard, 2.30 Acre has been handed over a month before Dec 2019 by Government of Tripura.
Bangladesh Capital Dhaka
Bangladesh Currency Taka
Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina

Aadhaar verification to be mandatory for new dealers from Jan 2020

  • GST Network has decided to make Aadhaar authentication or physical verification mandatory for new dealers from January 2020.
  • The decision was taken in order to check malpractices in GST
  • Those who don’t want Aadhaar authentication, physical verification will be carried out, which will be completed in three days
  • The GSTN also decided the much simplified new return system may be launched on January 1, 2020
  • Bihar deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi is head of the group of ministers of GST Network


Visa, BillDesk partner to roll out interface for recurring payments

  • Visa, a global leader in payments technology, and BillDesk, leader in the Indian payments business, have partnered to roll out of SI-Hub, a seamless and secure way to make recurring payments using cards with a one-time enrollment.
  • With this, the banks and merchants will be able to offer recurring payments/ standing instructions (SI) services (powered by BillDesk’s SI-Hub and Visa’s global recurring transaction framework for merchant-initiated transactions) to their cardholders to help manage payment across utilities, subscription services, and mutual fund SIPs, among others.
  • The RBI had recently released guidelines for e-mandate on cards for recurring transactions.
  • Visa is glad to partner with BillDesk to offer SI-Hub to its clients and enable cardholders to decide when, how much and the duration of their recurring payments through a simple dashboard interface.
  • The SI-Hub is a plug-n-play offering by BillDesk that banks can roll out to their customers with minimal integration effort.


IPS officer Chhaya Sharma to be honored by Asia Society

  • IPS officer Chhaya Sharma, who led the investigation into the brutal 2012 Nirbhayagangrape, has been chosen along with six others for the 2019 Asia Society Game Changers Award for redefining the role of female police officers.
  • The awards were announced by the city-based leading cultural organisation Asia Society and will be presented at a special ceremony next month.
  • Asia Society is the leading educational organization dedicated to promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships among people, leaders and institutions of Asia and the United States in a global context.

Neena Gupta wins two awards at Indian International Film Festival of Boston

  • Bollywood actor Neena Gupta registered a double victory at Indian International Film Festival of Boston. The BadhaaiHo actor won Best Actress award while her film The Last Color emerged victorious in Best Feature Film category.
  • The directorial debut of world-renowned chef VikasKhannaThe Last Color deals with taboo surrounding widows in Vrindavan and Varanasi in India.

Bangladesh PM Hasina receives Dr KalamSmriti International Excellence Award

  • Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina conferred the Dr KalamSmriti International Excellence Award 2019 in Dhaka
  • The award citation lauded Prime Minister Hasina for her vision of a peaceful and prosperous South Asia, free of tension, conflicts and terrorism.
  • The award has been instituted in the memory of former President Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
  • The award is given every year to honour statesmen or leaders who have shown excellence in respective fields to achieve the best for their countries.
  • The Presidents of the Maldives, Ghana and Mauritius earlier received the prestigious award since its introduction in 2015.

Gangs OfWasseypur only Indian film in The Guardian’s Best 100 films list

  • Filmmaker AnuragKashyap’s cult film Gangs OfWasseypur has become the only Indian film to feature in The Guardian list of 100 Best Films of the 21st century.
  • The film has bagged the 59th position.
  • The two-film Gangs Of Wasseypur series was released in 2012, and narrated the saga of a coal mafia family in the town of Wasseypur in Dhanbad district of Jharkhand


38th Sharjah Intl. Book Fair to be organized from 30th Oct to 9th of Nov

  • The 38th edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) will be organized from 30th of October to 9th of November this year, where authors, publishers, intellectuals and artists worldwide will bring their experiences and expertise to this prominent event and partake in a vibrant cultural programme.
  • UNESCO has named Sharjah as the World Book Capital City for the year 2019 in recognition of the city’s continuous efforts in promoting books and literacy.
  • SIBF will be organized under the theme ‘Open Books, Open Minds’.


Mumbai Ranks 45, Delhi 52 While Tokyo Tops In World’s Safest Cities List

  • Mumbai and Delhi ranked 37 and 41 respectively on the parameter of non-public safety and 45 and 52 total on a world’s most secure cities record that ranked 60 international locations worldwide throughout 5 continents.
  • Japanese capital Tokyo topped the record and it additionally included six cities of Asia-Pacific area within the high 10.


Singapore, India, Thailand kick off maiden trilateral exercise‘SITMEX’in Port Blair

  • The navies of the Republic of Singapore, India and Thailand are taking part in the inaugural Singapore-India-Thailand Maritime exercise (SITMEX)
  • The exercise comprises a shore phase held at Port Blair, and a sea phase in the Andaman Sea.
  • The host country is contributing guided missile destroyer INS Ranvir, missile corvette INS Kora, and OPV Sukanya in addition to maritime patrol aircraft.
  • The Republic of Singapore Navy is participating with the Formidable-class frigate RSS Tenacious while Thailand is represented by frigate HTMS Kraburi.


ICC Test Rankings: Kohli holds on to 2nd spot as Smith retains first position

  • India captain ViratKohli has managed to hold on to his second position behind Australia’sSteve Smith in the ICC Test Rankings for batsmen.
  • Besides former Australian captain Smith, compatriot Pat Cummins has also retained his first position in the ICC Test bowlers’ rankings.
  • Cummins too is well clear of other bowlers as he enjoys a lead of 57 points over second-placed KagisoRabada after finishing as the top wicket-taker with 29 scalps. India’s JaspritBumrah is in third place.

KaushalDharmamer clinches Myanmar International Series

  • Indian shuttlerKaushalDharmamerbeat Indonesia’s KaronoKaronoto win the Myanmar International Series men’s singles title
  • The 23-year-old from Mumbai, who had won the Hatzor International in October last year


SivaramanCheriyanad passes away

  • Writer SivaramanCheriyanadpassed away. He was 78.
  • He started his career as an upper primary school teacher. Sivaraman wrote several novels, stories, besides contributing to children’s literature.
  • He received the Abu Dhabi Sakthi Award in 1988 and the A.P. Kalakkad Award in 2009. He bagged Kerala SahithyaAkademi scholarship in 1990-91 for his study on the works of writer Parappuram. He was a recipient of the National Teachers Award in 1989.

Former Andhra Pradesh speaker KodelaSivaprasadaRao passed away

  • Former speaker of the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly KodelaSivaprasadaRao has passed away
  • He was one of the senior most leaders of the Telugu Desam Party (TDP)
  • Kodelawas six time MLA from Narsaraopet constituency in Guntur district,
  • In 2014, post-bifurcation of AP, he was made the first Speaker of the Assembly.
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