Current Affairs for SSC CGL Exams - 07 MAY 2019
PM to provide 1000cr as assistance to cyclone hit Odisha
- Prime Minister ShriNarendraModi has said that Central Govt will
provide manpower, machine, material and money for restoration work in
cyclone FANI affected areas in Odisha.
- Visiting the cyclone-affected areas today in Odisha, Prime
Minister said that 1000 crore rupees financial assistance will be given to
Odisha. Before the cyclone, 381 crore rupees assistance in advance was
declared by the Prime Minister.
- After an areal survey of the cyclone-affected areas today Prime
Minister said that whatever will be required for restoration and
rehabilitation work, Center will not hesitate to provide it as assistance.
- He also said that a team of officials of Prime Minister's Office
will camp in Bhubaneswar for the supervision of the reconstruction work.
Prime Minister praised the fishermen of the community of Odisha for their
high level of awareness about cyclone so that the casualty was minimised.
- Eastern Command of Indian Navy is now providing relief materials
at cyclone-affected areas of Puri and Khurda districts. Three helicopters
and three vessels are deployed for relief work. The doctors of Navy are
providing medical assistance to the injured in camp hospitals.
CRISIL claims external debt of DISCOMS to be worrying at the end of fiscal
- Aggregate external debt of State-owned electricity distribution
companies (discoms) is set to increase to pre-UjwalDiscom Assurance Yojana (UDAY)
levels of Rs. 2.6 lakh crore by the end of this fiscal, according to
Crisil’s analysis of discoms in 15 States, which account for 85% of the
- With most States having limited fiscal headroom, continuous
financial support to their discoms may be difficult. So discoms have to
become commercially viable through prudent tariff hikes and a material
reduction in aggregate technical and commercial (AT&C) losses, said the
- As per the MoUs States had signed under UDAY in fiscal 2016, their
discoms were to initiate structural reforms by reducing AT&C losses by 900
basis points (bps) to about 15% in fiscal 2019, and also implement regular
tariff hikes of 5-6% per annum.
- In lieu, State governments took over three-fourths of discom debt,
thus reducing the interest cost burden. While discoms enjoyed the benefit of
debt reduction, structural reforms have been slow to come by.
- “Further improvement in operations may face challenges because the
focus on new rural connections without adequate tariff hikes can increase
losses,” said SubodhRai, senior director, Crisil Ratings.
Mastercard plans huge investment in India in future
- Mastercard on Monday announced a $1 billion investment in India
over the next five years aimed at converting India into a vital node in the
company’s infrastructure, and also to continue business expansion.
- “There is a very large presence that Mastercard has built, and
now, after having seen the last five years, we are very bullish on the
overall Indian economy and what the future looks like, and clearly very
excited about the digital payments ecosystem and payments ecosystem in
general,” Ari Sarker, co-president, Asia Pacific at Mastercard told.
- Mastercard has previously invested $1 billion in India over the
last five years, Mr.Sarker explained, which have resulted in several
acquisitions, increased employment in the India offices, and improvements in
technology development capabilities.
- “If you look at 2014, our presence in India was only 30-odd
people, which was largely focussed on banks in India for our sales and
distribution effort,” Mr.Sarker said.
- The about $300 million portion of the investment will make India a
node for the delivery of payment processing capabilities. “In essence, all
of our processing capabilities [such as] authorisation, clearing,
settlement, tokenisation, fraud and safety services, all of that will be
locally delivered,” he said. “It will take us two years to build up.”
India Pakistan to attend SCO council meeting in September
- External Affairs Minister SushmaSwaraj and Pakistan’s Foreign
Minister Shah MehmoodQureshi will attend the Shanghai Cooperation
Organisation Council of Foreign Ministers in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, later this
month, for the first time since a proposed meeting between them in New York
last September was cancelled.
- Officials in New Delhi and Islamabad confirmed that both Foreign
Ministers were “scheduled to attend”, but said there was no proposal for
them to meet separately. The SCO summit meet in June will also come just
ahead of a plenary session of the Financial Action Task Force in Orlando,
U.S., from June 16 to 21, which will deliberate on Pakistan’s grey-listing
status on terror financing.
- Fuelling speculation, a Pakistani newspaper reported on Monday
that the Pakistan government has “informally conveyed to India through China
and Russia that the opportunity” of the SCO summit “could be utilised for a
bilateral meeting between them”.
- In the wake of the UN Security Council designation of MasoodAzhar,
New Delhi is watching closely to see what action Pakistan takes against the
- The action will also decide whether Pakistan, which is facing a
full financial scrutiny by the FATF, could be put on an even more
restrictive “blacklist” at the Orlando meeting, which Finance Minister
ArunJaitley called for on Friday.
India to cooperate with its partners on Afghanistan
- Zalmay Khalilzad, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan,
held talks with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Monday. The
crucial interaction came days after the diplomat held talks with a Taliban
delegation in the Qatari capital Doha.
- Mr.Khalilzad also met Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale. The
discussion came in the backdrop of the telephonic conversation between
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani
when both sides discussed ways of peace building to help the market and
connectivity scenario in the Af-Pak region.
- The visit of Mr.Khalilzad is significant as it aims at
establishing a broader regional discussion.
::SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY::
UN report claims around 1 million species under threat of extinction
- Relentless pursuit of economic growth, twinned with the impact of
climate change, has put an ”unprecedented” one million species at risk of
extinction, scientists said on Monday in a landmark report on the damage
done by modern civilisation to the natural world.
- Only a wide-ranging transformation of the global economic and
financial system could pull ecosystems that are vital to the future of human
communities worldwide back from the brink of collapse, concluded the report,
which was endorsed by 130 countries, including the U.S., Russia and China.
- “The report also tells us that it is not too late to make a
difference, but only if we start now at every level from local to global,”
Mr. Watson said in a statement. “By transformative change, we mean a
fundamental, system-wide reorganisation across technological, economic and
social factors, including paradigms, goals and values.”
- The report’s blunt language echoed the United Nations’
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which said in October that
profound economic and social changes would be needed to curb greenhouse
gases quickly enough to avert the most devastating consequences of a warming
Indian boxers gives a good show at FeliksStamm international boxing
- Indian boxers finished with a rich haul of six medals, including
two gold at the 36th FeliksStamm International Boxing Tournament in Warsaw,
Poland on Sunday.
- GauravSolanki and Manish Kaushik bagged one gold each. Indian
boxers also clinched a silver and three bronze.
- The 22-year-old Solanki out-punched England's William Cawley 5-0
in 52 kilogram on his way to the coveted yellow metal.