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UNION BUDGET 2019-2020

Key to Budget Documents BUDGET 2019-2020 The list of Budget documents presented to the Parliament, besides the Finance Minister's Budget Speech, is given below: A. Annual Financial Statement (AFS), Art. 112 B. Demands for Grants (DG), Art. 113 C. Finance...

LADIS

1. The information will help better planning for the movement of vessels 2. Moving a step ahead towards ensuring optimum use of National Waterways, the Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) launched a new portal LADIS – Least Available Depth...

Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan-Dhan (PM- SYM)

1. Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan-dhan (PM-SYM) will be rolled out by the Ministry of Labour and Employment on 15.02.2019. 2. As many as 42 crore workers are estimated to be engaged in the unorganized sector of the country. 3. The unorganized workers...

“Vande Bharat Express”

1. Speed, Scale and Service-Hallmarks of Vande Bharat Express 2. Vande Bharat Express can run up to a maximum speed of 160 kmph and has travel classes like Shatabdi Train but with better facilities. It aims to provide a totally new travel experience to...

National Policy for Domestic Workers

1. The Central Government has not enacted any separate law to protect the interest of domestic workers. 2. However, the Ministry of Labour & Employment is considering formulating a National Policy on Domestic Workers which is in the draft stage. 3. The...

e-AUSHADHI Portal

1. e-AUSHADHI portal, for online licensing of Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani and Homoeopathy drugs and related matters. 2. e-AUSHADHI portal is intended for a. increased transparency, b. improved information management facility, c. improved data usability and d....

POSHAN Abhiyan

1. The Government of India has set-up POSHAN Abhiyan (National Nutrition Mission). 2. The programme through use of technology, a targeted approach and convergence strives to reduce the level of Stunting, Under-nutrition, Anemia and Low Birth Weight in...

KUSUM Scheme

1. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has formulated a Scheme ‘Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan (KUSUM)’. 2. The proposal on KUSUM Scheme provides for: - a. installation of grid-connected solar power plants each of Capacity up to 2 MW in...

Adopt A Heritage Scheme

1. Under the “Apni Dharohar-Apni Pehchaan” Adopt a Heritage Project, the  Monument Mitras are responsible for operation and maintenance and development / up-gradation of tourist amenities, in the non- core areas of the monument. 2. The prospective Monument...

PMKVY – Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana

1. Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) is the flagship scheme of the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE). 2. The objective of this Skill Certification Scheme is a. to enable a large number of Indian youth to take up...

“Light House Projects challenge”

1. The Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs has instituted a challenge for States/ UTs to select six sites across the country for constructing the Lighthouse projects under GHTC-India. 2. The States/ UTs will receive Central Assistance to construct these...

Defence Innovation Hubs

1. The Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) framework of the Government envisages setting up and managing independent Defence Innovation Hubs (DIHs). 2. These DIHs will serve as platforms where innovators can get information about needs and feedback...

Swachh Shakti 2019

Swachh Shakti-2019 is a national event that aims to bring in to focus the leadership role played by rural women in Swachh Bharat Mission. Women Sarpanches and Panches from all over the country will be attending the event. The Ministry of Drinking Water and...

Earthquakes in Palghar

1. What happened? a. Since November, Maharashtra’s Palghar district has experienced dozens of small earthquakes. b. As on February 6, a seismometer located around 70 km from Palghar and operated by Gujarat’s Institute of Seismological Research (ISR),...

Government introduces Bill on North East

1. The government introduced a Constitution Amendment Bill in Rajya Sabha to increase the financial and executive powers of the 10 Autonomous Councils in the Sixth Schedule areas of the northeastern region. 2. The amendment will impact one crore tribal...

Govt. grants divisional status to Ladakh

Jammu and Kashmir Governor granted Ladakh a divisional status, thus creating three administrative units of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh in the State. 2. “The J&K government has approved the creation of a separate administrative and revenue division for...

RBI cuts rates to spur growth

1. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on cut the policy repo rate by 25 basis points to 6.25% in a bid to revive economic growth as it projected retail inflation to remain below its target of 4% for the next 12 months. 2. The rate reduction was the first...

Pension for informal sector workers

1. What is the scheme? a. A major announcement in the Interim Budget 2019-20 was the creation of the Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Mandhan, a pension scheme for informal workers. b. Under this scheme, subscribers will receive an assured monthly pension of...

Drought

1. What is Drought? a. Event that results from lower than normal expected rainfall over a season or period. 2. Causes a. Shortage of rainfall. b. Severity of drought is determined by the extent of deviation of rainfall from the average. c. Frequency of...

Fundraiser to secure 96 elephant corridors

At a time when a recent survey found seven elephant corridors in the country impaired, the Asian Elephant Alliance, an umbrella initiative by five NGOs, has come together to secure 96 out of the 101 existing corridors used by elephants across 12 States in...

SC upholds government’s Haj policy

The Supreme Court upheld the Haj Policy 2019-23, which categorizes the Haj Group Organizers (HGOs) on the parameters of their experience and financial strength. The court found “nothing arbitrary or unreasonable” in such a classification by the government....

Entire Aravalli area is devastated, rues SC

1. In a stinging attack on the Rajasthan government, the Supreme Court said the State authorities are hand in glove with illegal miners who operate in the fast-depleting Aravalli region. 2. Aravali Range a. The Aravali Range is a range of mountains in...

Pink Revolution

1. A ‘pink revolution’ is quietly taking shape in Maharashtra. 2. The objective is to breed imported pigs to address the problem of protein deficiency in a sizeable section of the population that has been deprived of access to affordable meat besides...

Death Penalty

1. According to the Indian Penal Code along with other acts eleven offences committed within the territory of India are punishable by death: a. 120B Being a party to a criminal conspiracy to commit a capital offence b. 121 Waging, or attempting to wage...

Endosulfan

1. What is Endosulfan? a. Endosulfan is a restricted-use pesticide that is particularly effective against aphids, fruit worms, beetles, leafhoppers, moth larvae, and white flies on a wide variety of crops. b. It is not approved for residential use. c....

National Deworming Day (NDD) campaign

1. The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) conducted its eighth round of National Deworming Day (NDD). 2. This key program initiative is implemented with an objective to reduce the prevalence of Soil Transmitted Helminths (STH) or parasitic...

New Policy for Overseas Borrowings

1. Reserve Bank of India (RBI), in consultation with the Government of India (GoI), has rationalized the framework for External Commercial Borrowing (ECB) and Rupee Denominated Bonds and notified a new Policy. 2. Under the New Policy, all entities eligible...

Atal Bhujal Yojana

1. The World Bank has approved Atal Bhujal Yojana (ABHY),Rs.6000 Crore scheme, for sustainable management of ground water with community participation. 2. The funding pattern is 50:50 between Government of India and World Bank. 3. The identified...

National Gas Grid

1. The Government has envisaged to develop the National Gas Grid. a. At present about 16,788 Km natural gas pipeline is operational and about 14,239 Km gas pipelines are being developed to increase the availability of natural gas across the country. 2....

Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Bill, 2018

1. The Union Cabinet has given its approval to move official amendments to the Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Bill, 2018, pursuant to the recommendations of the Standing Committee on Finance (SCF). 2. The official amendments will further strengthen...

Darwaza Band-Part Two

Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen launches a national campaign for ODF sustainability. The Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen launched the 'Darwaza Band -Part 2' campaign which focuses on sustaining the open defecation free status of villages across the country....

Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog

The Union Cabinet has approved the proposal for establishment of Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog for Conservation protection and development of cows and their progeny. The setting up of Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog will lead to conservation, protection and...

GSAT-31

1. India’s latest communication satellite, GSAT-31 was successfully launched from the Spaceport in French Guiana. 2. The launch vehicle Ariane 5 VA-247 lifted off from Kourou Launch Base, French Guiana carrying India’s GSAT-31 and Saudi Geostationary...

Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana

1. The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has introduced a scheme for providing physical aids and Assisted Living Devices for Senior Citizens belonging to BPL category named “Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana (RVY)” on 1st April, 2017 with the objective of...

“Know India Programme”

1. The 53rd edition of Know India Programme for Young Indian Diaspora involves 40 participants (24 female and 16 males) from Fiji, Guyana, Mauritius, Portugal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Suriname and Trinidad & Tobago. 2. The partner states of this edition...

Shehri Samridhi Utsav

1. Shehri Samridhi Utsav, an initiative of Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs (MoHUA),aims to extend the outreach of Deendayal Antyodaya Mission – National Urban Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NULM), to the most vulnerable, showcase its initiatives and...

Safe City Project

1. Empowered Committee of Officers for Nirbhaya funds scheme has approved pilot Safe City projects in eight selected metropolitan cities, namely, Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Lucknow with a view to provide safety to...

Sentinelese Tribe

1. The Government has promulgated various laws/regulations from time to time to ensure that the rights and wellbeing of the Sentinelese are safeguarded. 2. These are being strictly implemented and enforced by the UT Administration. 3. These Laws/Regulation...

Tuberculosis Eradication

Nikshay Poshan Yojana 1. The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MOHFW) has launched the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme for nutritional support to tuberculosis patients as Nikshay Poshan Yojana (NPY) from 01.04.2018. 2. The Nikshay Poshan Yojana...

NCDRC

What is NCDRC? 1. The NCDRC has been safe guarding the interests and rights of the consumers. Complaints, where the value of goods or services & compensation claimed, is beyond Rs. 1 crore are filed before the NCDRC. 2. It also hears appeals against orders...

Ethanol

What is Ethanol? 1. Ethanol, an anhydrous ethyl alcohol having chemical formula of C2H5OH, can be produced from sugarcane, maize, wheat, etc. which are having high starch content. 2. In India, ethanol is mainly produced from sugarcane molasses by...

Ease of Doing Agri-Business Index

1. The income approach focuses on achieving high productivity, reduced cost of cultivation and remunerative price on the produce, with a view to earn higher profits from farming. 2. Ease of Doing Agri-Business, a concept note along with parameters for...

Amalgamation of PMKSY to Schemes

1. Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY) is amalgamation of various schemes viz. a. Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme (AIBP), b. PMKSY –Har Khet Ko Pani (HKKP) including Command Area Development (CAD), c. Surface Minor Irrigation (SMI) and...

Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan

Department of School Education and Literacy has launched an Integrated Scheme for School Education-Samagra Shiksha, subsuming three erstwhile Centrally Sponsored Schemes of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) and Teacher...

Shekatkar Committee

The Committee of Experts (CoE) constituted by the Ministry of Defence under the chairmanship of Lt. Gen (Retd) DB Shekatkar to recommend measures to enhance combat capability and rebalance defence expenditure of the armed forces, submitted its report in...

12th Regional Standards Conclave

What is The Bureau of Indian Standards Act, 2016 Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution. Replaces the Bureau of Indian Standards Act, 1986. [establishes a Bureau for the purpose of standardization, marking and certification of articles...

Kerala sets up drug price monitor

The new watchdog will offer technical help to the State Drug Controllers. Kerala has become the first State to set up a price monitoring and research unit (PMRU) to track violations of prices of essential drugs and medical devices under the Drugs Price Control Order...

Macedonia to become NATO’s 30th member

The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) said that its 29 members would clear the way for Macedonia to become the alliance’s 30th member, following its historic name change. North Macedonia. 50 m lowest point: Vardar River 2764 highest point: Golem Korab (Maja e...

New e-commerce rules

E-commerce rules that went into effect in India caused widespread disruption for Amazon.com, forcing it to take down an array of items from its India website, including Echo speakers. In December, India modified foreign direct investment (FDI) rules for its burgeoning...

Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty

The U.S is suspending its obligations under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty effective February 2 and will withdraw from the treaty in six months. The treaty, signed during the Cold War in 1987, bans ground-launched missiles with a range of 500...

Indus Dolphin

1. The Punjab government has declared Indus River Dolphin — found only in the Beas — as the State aquatic animal. 2. rare aquatic animal would be the flagship species for the conservation of the Beas eco-system. 3. Indus river dolphins are one of only four river...

Extreme Weather in North America

A polar vortex is a low-pressure area—a wide expanse of swirling cold air—that is parked in polar regions. During winter, the polar vortex at the North Pole expands, sending cold air southward. This happens fairly regularly and is often associated with outbreaks of...

Corruption Perception Index 2018

The index, which ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption according to experts and businesspeople, uses a scale of 0 to 100, where 0 is highly corrupt and 100 is very clean. It reveals that the continued failure of most...

National Statistical Commission (NSC)

The Government of India through a resolution dated 1st June 2005 set up the National Statistical Commission (NSC). The setting up of the NSC followed the decision of the Cabinet to accept the recommendations of the Rangarajan Commission, which reviewed the Indian...

Land Acquisition

Last year, the SC issued the notice to Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Jharkhand on the amendments to their States’ land acquisition laws to the extent that consent of farmers or landowners was not required before their land was acquired for...

SC – Automatic Listing of fresh cases

The Supreme Court launched its new system of an automatic listing of fresh cases within three to seven days in a bid to do away with the system of mentioning of matters for urgent listing every day. Supreme Court was devising a mechanism to do away with the process of...

Cow urine and Global Warming

Cow urine is a source of nitrous oxide emissions (N2O), a gas that is 300 times more powerful than carbon dioxide. Most times, when cow urine is used in degraded pastures, which are also seen in vast tracts of land in India, N2O emissions are tripled. That cattle and...

Drought

What is Drought? 1.      The event that results from lower than normal expected rainfall over a season or period. Causes 1.      Shortage of rainfall. 2.      The severity of drought is determined by the extent of deviation of rainfall from the average. 3.      The...

139 Polluted cities not on NCAP

There are 139 Indian cities that breach air pollution standards but are not included in the Centre's National Clean Air Programme (NCAP), says a report by Greenpeace. The NCAP was launched by the government to reduce particulate matter (PM) pollution by 20-30% in at...

Non-communicable diseases top killers: WHO

Diabetes, cancer and heart disease cause over 70% of deaths Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) mainly cardiovascular diseases, chronic respiratory diseases, diabetes and cancer continue to be the top killers in the South-East Asia Region, claiming 8.5 million lives each...

Tiger Population

Challenge faced in Tiger conservation in India Dwindling core forests Shrinking of tiger corridors (strips of land that allow tigers to move unfettered across diverse habitat) Poaching Man-animal conflict NTCA National Tiger Conservation Authority is a statutory body...

Chilika lake

Nalbana Bird Sanctuary. Chilika, which lies in the Central Asian Flyway for birds, is a major stopover for migratory birds from the Arctic and the Sub-Arctic regions in the course of their onward and return migration along the east coast. Chilika At a Glance Situated...

High Courts in India

The Madras High Courtin Chennai, Bombay High Court in Mumbai, Calcutta High Court in Kolkata and Allahabad High Court in Allahabad are the oldest four high courts in India. The following are the 25 high courts in India. Court Date Act Jurisdiction Principal seat...

Index of Industrial Production (IIP)

Definition: The Index of Industrial Production (IIP) is an index that shows the growth rates in different industry groups of the economy in a stipulated period. The IIP index is computed and published by the Central Statistical Organization (CSO) on a monthly basis...

Bharat Parv

About Bharat Parv It is a five-day festival organized by the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India as a part of the Republic day celebration. It showcases the cuisine and culture of different states of India. It aims to generate patriotism in the...

Elephant to patrol Satkosia Tiger Reserve

Trained elephants will help ground-level forest guards patrol deep in the forest where jeeps cannot go. The two elephants are being brought from the Similipal Tiger Reserve. Satkosia Tiger Reserve Satkosia spreads along the magnificent gorge over the...

North East Autonomous Councils

Autonomous administrative divisions of India 1 Assam 1Bodoland Territorial Council 2Dima Hasao Autonomous District Council 3Karbi Anglong Autonomous District Council 4Others 2 Manipur 1Sadar Hills Autonomous District Council 2Others 3 Jammu and Kashmir...

Oral mentions in SC will soon be history

In NEWS: The Supreme Court is drafting new guidelines to ensure that urgent cases automatically come up before a Bench for hearing within four days of their being filed. Details Oral mentioning is a convention by which lawyers short-circuit the long-winded...

Sedition (Section 124-A of the IPC)

Sedition – Section 124A IPC Section 124A defines the offence of sedition. The section deals with the offence of sedition, a term that covers speech or writing, or any form of visible representation, which brings the government into hatred or contempt, or...

Circadian rhythm

A circadian rhythm is a roughly 24-hour cycle in the physiological processes of living beings, including plants, animals, fungi and cyanobacteria. Circadian rhythms are endogenously generated, although they can be modulated by external cues such as...

Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel

Statue of Unity The Statue of Unity is a colossal statue of Indian statesman and independence activist Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel (1875–1950) who is highly respected for his leadership in uniting the 562 princely states of India to form the single large...

Coal Mines in India

Distribution of Coal in India Coal is a one of the important minerals which is mainly used in the generation of thermal power and smelting of iron ore. Coal occurs in rock sequences mainly of two geological ages, namely Gondwana and tertiary deposits....

External commercial borrowing

External commercial borrowing (ECBs) are loans in India made by non-resident lenders in foreign currency to Indian borrowers. They are used widely in India to facilitate access to foreign money by Indian corporations and PSUs (public sector undertakings)....

RailTel

RailTel Corporation of India Ltd. is a "Miniratna" (public sector) enterprise of Government of India focusing on providing broadband and VPN services. RailTel was formed in September 2000 with the objective of creating nationwide broadband, telecom and...

Central Information Commission

It is an independent, statutory committee formed under RTI Act to ensure freedom of information to citizens. It has jurisdiction over central government bodies, PSU and authorities. Composition: It has chief information commissioner and upto 10 information...

Pulicat Lake

Pulicat Lagoon is the second largest brackish water lagoon in India, after Chilika Lake. The Lagoon is one of the three important wetlands to attract North-East Monsoon rain clouds during October to December season to Tamil Nadu. The lagoon comprises the...

Subhash Chandra Bose museum at Red Fort

The Museum on Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose and Indian National Army provides Detailed account of Subhash Chandra Bose and the history of Indian National Army. It also showcases various artefacts related to Subhash Chandra Bose and INA. The artefacts include...

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD)

Pravasi Bharatiya Divas is a celebratory day observed on 9 January by the Republic of India to mark the contribution of the overseas Indian community towards the development of India. The day commemorates the return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa to...

India Africa Field Training Exercise (IAFTX)

The final planning conference to work out the modalities for Indian Africa Field Training Exercise (IAFTX)-2019 is being conducted at Pune on 23-24 January2019. Delegates from Egypt, Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan, South Africa, Tanzania, Namibia,...