The Hindu Review Daily Gk Update : 6th March 2019
♠The Hindu Review♠
♦ Government of India and World Bank Sign $250 Million for the National Rural Economic Transformation Project
- The World Bank and the Government of India signed here today in New Delhi a $250 Million Agreement for the National Rural Economic Transformation Project (NRETP) which will help women in rural households shift to a new generation of economic initiatives by developing viable enterprise for farm and non-farm products.
- A Key Focus of the Project will be to promote women-owned and women-led farm and non-farm enterprises across value chains; enable them to build businesses that help them access finance, markets and networks; and generate employment.
- The National Rural Economic Transformation Project (NRETP) is an additional financing to the $500 million National Rural Livelihoods Project (NRLP) approved by the World Bank in July 2011. The NRLP which is currently being implemented across 13 states, 162 districts and 575 blocks, has so far mobilized more than 8.8 million women from poor rural households into 750,000 self-help groups (SHGs). These SHGs have been further federated into 48,700 Village Organizations and 2900 Cluster/Gram Panchayat-level Federations. While these 13 states will continue to be supported under the new project signed today, 125 new districts will be added from within these states.
♦ PM Modi launches Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Mandhan Yojana
- The nation on Tuesday saw another example of making the impossible possible when Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a mega pension scheme for workers in the unorganized sector, the Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan-dhan Yojana at Vastral in Gujarat. The scheme will provide monthly pension of Rs. 3000 to the employees of unorganised sector after they attain the age of 60 years. A contribution matching the age specific contribution of the beneficiary will be made by the Central Government. On this occasion, Prime Minister also distributed pension card to the beneficiaries under ‘Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan-dhan Yojana’ and interacted with some of the beneficiaries. This mega social security scheme was announced by the Centre as part of this year’s budget.
- Addressing the gathering, Prime Minister Modi said that 42 crore workers from un-organised sectors are eligible for this pension scheme by contributing Rs 55 to Rs 200 monthly. PM Modi said that the scheme is dedicated to the workers of the country, and it is like a tilak on the forehead of “Maa Bharati”.
♦ India signs Loan Agreement with the World Bank for USD 96 Million for Additional Financing
- The World Bank, Government of India and Government of Uttarakhand (GoUK) signed here today a $96 Million Loan Agreement to provide additional funds to the State of Uttarakhand in its post-disaster recovery plans, ongoing since the floods of 2013, as well as strengthen its capacity for Disaster Risk Management.
- The World Bank, through the Uttarakhand Disaster Recovery Project, has been supporting the State Government since 2014 to restore housing and rural connectivity, and to build resilience of communities. So far, the Project has completed more than 2,000 permanent houses and 23 public buildings and restored over 1,300 kilometers of roads and 16 bridges. The additional financing of $96 million will further help in the reconstruction of bridges, road and river bank protection works, and in the construction of a training facility for the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF). The Project will also help to increase the technical capacity of the State Entities to respond promptly and more effectively to such crises in the future.
♦ Unusual alliance in Sri Lanka forged to save blue whales
- When the feeding grounds of blue whales overlap with busy shipping lanes, it’s often bad news for the endangered marine mammals.
- In Sri Lanka, however, an unusual alliance has been forged- conservationists and shipping companies have aligned in a bid to move the traffic lane about 28 km away to help avoid collisions between whales and freighters. The only holdout is Sri Lanka, which has so far declined to sign off.
- While shipping companies say they’re willing to absorb the cost of the moved corridor, the Sri Lankan government says it’s worried the relocation might make ships less inclined to stop in the country. After years of lobbying from scientists and the shipping industry, Sri Lanka said a decision might “hopefully” be made in March.
♦ India Signs Loan Agreement with the World Bank for USD 25.2 Million for Chhattisgarh Public Financial Management and Accountability Program
- The Government of India, the State Government of Chhattisgarh and the World Bank signed here in New Delhi today a $25.2 Million Loan Agreement to support the State’s Reforms in Expenditure Management. This support will cover Expenditure Planning, Investment Management, Budget Execution, Public Procurement and Accountability.
- The Chhattisgarh Public Financial Management and Accountability Program, which is the First Bank-Financed State-Level Project in Chhattisgarh in nearly a decade, will also help the State strengthen its Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) and Tax Administration Systems.
- The New Project will build capacity of the State’s Human Resources and the Institutions Handling Management of Public Finances. The World Bank will facilitate cross-learning from Public Financial Management (PFM) Reforms undertaken by it in other Indian States while bringing in global experiences.
♦ QS World Ranking: Five Indian institutes in top 300, IIT Bombay leads India chart
- According to the recently released QS world ranking, five Indian institutes have secured a spot in the list of top 300 world universities. The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay has gained the top rank among Indian institutes followed by Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore.
- IIT Bombay surpassed last year’s top institute IIT Delhi by moving 17 ranks up and securing 162nd rank worldwide. IISc has shown the maximum improvement with a jump of 20 positions from last year. It moved up from 190th rank last year to 170. IIT Delhi remained at 172nd spot globally, however, in Indian ranking it went down to the third spot as IIT Bombay and IISc improved their score.
♦ Global Consumer Confidence Survey topped by India
- India ranked first in the Confidence Board Global Consumer Confidence Survey which was conducted in collaboration with a global performance management company Nielsen Holdings.
- India maintained its 1st position from 3rd quarter and in the 4th quarter of 2018 India’s Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) score is 133.
- South Korea has the most pessimistic consumer who are worried about rising inflation, lower wage growth, unemployment, a weak stock market and global trade uncertainties in the world.
- CCI Confidence Board measured optimism towards job prospects, the health of personal finances and spending intentions in the next 12 months for the survey.
♦ Sanjeev Ranjan named Road Transport Secretary, N N Sinha to be NHAI chief
- Senior IAS officer Sanjeev Ranjan has been named secretary, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH), as part of a top-level bureaucratic reshuffle effected by the central government, according to a Personnel Ministry order.
- Ranjan, a 1985-batch IAS officer of Tripura cadre, is at present the chairman of National Highways Authority of India.
- He has been appointed officer on special duty in MoRTH. Ranjan will take over as MoRTH secretary with effect from April 1, 2019 upon superannuation of Yudhvir Singh Malik by the end of this month, the order said.
- Nagendra Nath Sinha will replace Ranjan as the new NHAI chief.
- Sinha is managing director, National Highways and infrastructure Development Corporation. He will continue to hold the additional charge of this post too.
♦ Virat Kohli becomes fastest to 9000 international runs as captain, slams 40th ODI ton
- It was business as usual for India captain Virat Kohli as he brought up his 40th ODI hundred in Nagpur in the second ODI against Australia on Tuesday. Coming into bat at number three after the dismissal of Shikhar Dhawan, Kohli reached his three figure-mark in 107 balls. With this, he is now nine tons behind Sachin Tendulkar who leads the charts with 49 tons. He is also now the fastest to reach 9000 international runs as captain.
- Kohli has taken 159 innings to cross the 9000-run mark while Ponting took 203 innings. Kohli is also the sixth player to score 9,000 runs in international cricket as captain. Graeme Smith (220 innings), MS Dhoni (253), Allan Border (257), Stephen Fleming (272) are the other former captains in the list.
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