PIB (23/08/2019): UPSC Current affairs to prepare for UPSC exam


Holds wide-ranging talks with the heads of all three countries

  • The Vice President, M. Venkaiah Naidu who guided a top-level delegation to the Baltic Countries of Lithuania and Latvia ended the visit by increasing India’s awareness in the area.
  • The Vice President came Delhi early today morning after completing of a sequence of official encounters in Estonia on the final stretch of his tour.
  • Acknowledging to the binational trade of US $ 172 million between Estonia and India, Shri Naidu called for improving trade and economic cooperation between the two countries.


PM’s departure statement ahead of his visit to France, UAE and Bahrain

  • PM’s visit to France demonstrates the firm strategic partnership, which our two nations deeply share and value. On 22-23 Aug 2019, I would have 2 way  meetings in France, including meeting with President Macron and a meeting with PM Philippe.
  • Later, on 25-26 August, I will engage in the G7 Summit gatherings as Biarritz Partner at the summon of President Macron in the Meetings on Climate, Oceans Environment and on Digital Transformation.
  • India and France have very good bilateral ties, which are enhanced by a shared view to cooperate for further improving prosperity and peace for our 2 countries and the universe at large.


Union Minister of Culture & tourism Prahlad Singh Patel introduces the novel ‘the Diary of Manu Gandhi’

  • The book has been released by National Archives of India, on the event of 150thcelebration of Mahatma Gandhi in cooperation with Oxford University Press.
  • Talking on the event Shri Prahlad Singh Patel told that the art of diary writing is altitude of self discipline of a person and routine of diary writing converts an ordinary person into incredible person.
  • The schedule of Manu Gandhi originally in Gujarati has been translated and edited by Dr Tridip Suhrud, a well recognized scholar participated in the Gandhian Intellectual tradition.


MoU among Tata Realty and AWHO

  • The MoU allows the people of Indian Army to instantly take over dwelling units in 13 ‘Ready to Move in’ projects of Tata Realty pan India. It is circulated over 10 cities including Gurugram, Chennai, Bengaluru etc, at a rebate ranging from 11% to 27%.
  • A notable landmark was achieved with the signing of an MoU between Tata Realty and Indian Army & Housing on 22nd August 2019.
  • Army Welfare Housing Organization (AWHO) will encourage acquirement of homes from reputable private constructors at discounted rather than constructing them for the troops.


Government committed to providing clean and green energy at a cheaper rate: the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climatic change(MEFC)

  • The MEFC took decisions to provide clean as well as green energy at a lesser rate. For wind power projects they decided to decrease mandatory charging. 
  • Shri Prakash Javadekar, the Union Environment Minister in review meeting took the decision to boost investment in wind power projects. Also, this will help in providing wind power at a cheaper rate.
  • Therefore by this India can improve power consumption from renewable resources rather than non-renewable. Also, most noteworthy that India can achieve 50% of power consumption from renewable resources by 2030.


Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT)  issues a clarification on the eligibility of small Start-ups to avail tax holiday

  • The CBDT has conveyed that small start-up with turnover up to Rs. 25 crores continue to get the promised tax further. This is as specified in Section 80-IAC of the Income Tax Act, 1961. 
  • Subsequently, this provides a deduction for 100% of the income of a  start-up. This is for 3 years out of 7 years from the year of its inclusion. 
  • Especially, for promoting small startups in the initial year of operation, that Section 80-IAC was inserted in the vide Finance Act, 2016.


Central Board of Trustees (CBT) Sanctions Proposal to Suggest Amendment in Employees’ Pension Scheme (EPS) 1995

  • The CBT EPF in a meeting held at Hyderabad on 21 August 2019, approved the suggestion to recommend for amendment in EPS 1995. Specifically, this amendment is for the restoration of the cash value of the pension to pensioners. Furthermore, this will benefit approx. 6.3 lakhs pensioners.
  • Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar, the Minister of State (I/C) for Labour and Employment expressed satisfaction for EPFO. 
  • More than 91 % of claims of EPF members in online mode has settled by Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO 
  • Shri Raghunathan, Employees’ Representative on the Central Board, EPF informed the Board that while SBI’s Fund Management Arm has quoted 94% less than SBI PMS, UTI AMC has quoted 28% less. 


NITI Aayog to release a Report on the Composite Water Management Index 2.0.

  • NITI Aayog will release the second Round of Composite Water Management Index (CWMI 2.0)  in New Delhi. Together with Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Minister of Jal Shakti, Dr. Rajiv Kumar, Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog will launch the program.
  • NITI Aayog firstly launched the Composite Water Management Index in 2018. This is as a tool to implant the sense of cooperative and competitive federalism among the states. 
  • In order to evaluate and improve the performance of States and Union Territories in the efficient management of water resources, the CWMI is an important tool.