Current Affairs Update – 20th September, 2017


Hello and welcome to exampundit. Here are the Important Current Affairs of 20 September, 2017. These are very important for the upcoming IBPS PO, IBPS RRB, OICL AO, UIIC Assistant & NICL Assistant Exams.



Banking & Financial News

RBI notifies P2P lending businesses as NBFCs


  • Peer-to-peer lending (P2P) platforms will be treated as non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) and thus regulated by the RBI, the central bank said in a notification.
  • P2P lending is a form of crowd-funding used to raise loans which are paid back with interest. It can be defined as the use of an online platform that matches lenders with borrowers in order to provide unsecured loans.
  • "The Reserve Bank of India...Specifies a non-banking institution that carries on 'the business of a peer to peer lending platform' to be an NBFC," the notification said.
  • As per the RBI, the business of a P2P lending platform mean that the service of loan facilitation, via online medium or otherwise, to "the participants who have entered into an arrangement with that platform to lend on it or to avail of loan facilitation services provided by it".
  • The RBI had floated a consultation paper in April 2016 on such lending platforms.
  • The borrower can either be an individual or a legal person requiring a loan. The interest rate may be set by the platform or mutual agreement between the borrower and the lender.
  • Fees are paid to the platform by both the lender as well as the borrower. Borrowers pay an origination fee - either a flat rate fee or as a percentage of the loan amount raised - according to their risk category.

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Tata Steel, Thyssenkrupp sign MoU for European Steel JV


  • Tata Steel  and German firm Thyssenkrupp inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to combine their European steel operations in a 50-50 joint venture, creating the continent's No.2 steelmaker after ArcelorMittal.
  • The new company, to be named Thyssenkrupp Tata Steel, would be based in or near Amsterdam, Thyssenkrupp said in a statement.
  • The deal entails combining Tata's plants in the Netherlands and the UK with Thyssenkrupp's German assets and would be managed through a lean holding company based in the Netherlands. This entity will rival Europe's top producer, ArcelorMittal.
  • The MoU, widely expected after Thyssenkrupp last week said a deal could still be reached this month, outlines synergies of 400-600 million euros ($480-720 million) a year as well as up to 4,000 job cuts, about 8 percent of the joint workforce.
  • The MoU will be followed by negotiations about the details of the transactions as well as due diligence - a detailed look at each other's accounts - before a joint venture contract can be signed at the beginning of 2018, Thyssenkrupp said.
  • The signing of the joint deal will require the approval of Thyssenkrupp's supervisory board and Tata Steel's board of directors as well as that of the European Commission.
  • The proposed 50:50 joint venture-Thyssenkrupp Tata Steel-would be focused on quality and technology leadership, and the supply of premium and differentiated products to customers, with annual shipments of about 21 million tonnes of flat steel products.

News related to India & states

India’s Zero Hunger Programme to be launched in Gorakhpur, Koraput and Thane


  • India’s ambitious Zero Hunger Programme through interventions in form sector will be launched in three districts, namely- Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh, Koraput in Odisha and Thane in Maharashtra, on 16 October 2017.
  • 16 October is observed globally as World Food Day. The zero hunger programme planned in these three districts will focus on agriculture, nutrition, and health in a symbiotic manner.
  • Information regarding the ambitious Zero Hunger Programme was given by the eminent agriculture scientist and as the father of 'green revolution' in India, M S Swaminathan. The Programme will be initiated by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research the (ICAR) in association with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), the MS Swaminathan Research Foundation and the Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC).
  • The programme will ensure suitable methods of measuring the impact of an intervention.
  • M S Swaminathan said, “There will be an intensive training programme in order to identify the nutritional maladies in each district and the appropriate agricultural/horticultural and animal husbandry remedies.”
  • The concerned state governments will also be involved in the programme which consists of organisations of the farming system for nutrition, setting up genetic gardens for biofortified plants/crops and initiation of a 'Zero Hunger' training.


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Narendra Modi dedicates Sardar Sarovar Dam to nation


  • For the people of three states -- Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated 138-metre Sardar Sarovar Dam on the Narmada river on Sunday, saying “no other project in the world has faced so many hurdles”.
  • Dedicating the dam to the nation on his 67th birthday, PM Modi said at Dabhoi, near the dam, that he would live and die for the dreams of the people of the country. “You know me, I can’t do small things. I don’t think small, don’t do small things. With 1.25 billion people with me, I can’t dream small.”
  • The project, which has cost around Rs. 60,000 crore, irrigates 1.8 million hectares of land in Gujarat and 2,46,000 hectares in Rajasthan. The project aims to benefit about 10 lakh farmers. The hydro power generated from the turbines installed in the dam provides electricity to Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Gujarat.
  • The Sardar Sarovar Dam project was conceptualised by Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, after whom the project was named. Before it was renamed, the project was called the Navagam Dam. Though the foundation stone for the project was laid by Nehru in 1961, construction work on it could not commence till February 1980 due to litigation on issues relating to the environment and rehabilitation of displaced villagers.
  • After clearances from various authorities was received, construction work progressed and the dam remained unfinished at a height of 121.92 metres till May 2014. It was in June, after the Narmada Control Authority (NCA) approved the state government’s eight-year-old plea to increase the Sardar Sarovar dam’s height by installing 17-metre tall sluice gates, that the project was completed.

India to conduct first BIMSTEC Disaster Management Exercise 2017


  • The first BIMSTEC Disaster Management Exercise 2017 (BIMSTEC DMEx-2017) will be conducted by the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) as the lead agency from 10 October to 13 October 2017.
  • The Exercise will be conducted in the National Capital Region (NCR).
  • This Exercise will serve as a platform for sharing best practices on all aspects of Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), strengthening regional response and coordination for Disaster Management among the BIMSTEC member countries.
  • It was decided at the 17th BIMSTEC Senior Officials Meeting held in Kathmandu, Nepal on 7 February 2017 that India would organize the first annual Disaster Management Exercise for the region.
  • Delegates from all seven nations of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) grouping, namely Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand, will participate in the event.
  • The main focus of the BIMSTEC DMEx-2017 will be on testing the region’s preparedness and resilience towards effective activation of inter-Governmental interaction/dialogue/agreements for immediate deployment of regional resources for disaster response.
  • The BIMSTEC DMEx-2017 will be conducted in two phases in Delhi and NCR.

Union Government to launch mobile app for retiring government staffs


  • The Union Government will be launching a mobile application for central government employees on 20 September 2017. The app will help the retiring government employees to monitor the progress of their pension settlement cases.
  • In addition, the app will also allow the retired employees to assess their superannuation funds and record complaints through the pension calculator. They will also be able to register their grievances and get updates on orders issued by the department.
  • The app will be launched by the Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions Dr. Jitendra Singh in New Delhi. At present, the ministry has a pensioners' portal for this purpose.
  • Reports suggest that the newly launched mobile app will have all services meant for the pensioner, which is available at the portal of the Department of Pension and Pensioners' Welfare.
  • Besides, Dr. Singh also inaugurated the first series of Pension Adalat. The Pension Adalats is being convened with the objective of bringing the aggrieved pensioner, the concerned department, the bank on a common table so that such cases can be settled within the framework of extant rules.

Vice President releases Commemorative Coin on MS Subbulakshmi


  • Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on 19 September 2017 released a Commemorative Coin on Bharat Ratna Dr MS Subbulakshmi on the occasion of Birth Centenary Commemoration of M.S. Subbulakshmi.
  • M.S. Subbulakshmi was a legendary and iconic figure who said that what defines India is this rich heritage of music and its unifying role in bringing people together. Subbulakshmi was not only a singer but was an encyclopaedia of singing.
  • She said that the roots of Indian music can be traced to Vedic literature, particularly in Sama Veda.
  • She was the first musician to be awarded Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian honour and first Indian musician to have performed at the United Nations General Assembly on 50th anniversary celebration of the United Nations.

Appointments

Rajnikant Mishra appointed Chief of Sashastra Seema Bal


  • Rajnikant Mishra in September 2017 has been named as the new Chief of the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB).
  • The decision was taken by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet on 18 September 2017.
  • Mishra will succeed Archana Ramasundaram who is set to retire on 30 September 2017.
  • Mishra is a 1984 batch Uttar Pradesh Cadre IPS officer. He has been posted as Special Director General in Border Security Force (BSF) since 2012.

Awards & Honors

Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust wins Rajbhasha Kirti Award for 11th consecutive time


  • The Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) in September 2017 was awarded the Rajbhasha Kirti Puraskar for the year 2016-17.
  • The JNPT was honoured with the prestigious award in the category of ‘B’ region for autonomous bodies and boards.
  • The JNPT won the prize for its excellent implementation of the official language. This is the 11th consecutive year that Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust has won this award.
  • Neeraj Bansal, Deputy Chairman of JNPT, accepted the award from the Honourable President of India, Ramnath Kovind.
  • The award was presented at a ceremony organised at the Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi on the occasion of Hindi Divas celebration on 14 September 2017.






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