Daily Current Affairs

Prelims Prominence - January 29, 2018


Alpha Design Technologies

What –

  • Alpha Design Technologies Ltd. has signed Rs. 45-crore deal with Ministry of Defence

Why -

  • To supply indigenous simulators for gunnery and missile firing from BMP II vehicles to Indian Army.

    Enlighten about BMP II –

  • The BMP II is a Soviet-origin amphibious infantry fighting vehicle.
  • The simulators will be used to train missile firing personnel.
  • Currently, Indian Army firing personnel train fully on actual BMP vehicles. The use of simulators will save vehicle wear and tear to large extent.

Bilateral Relations

INDIA – JAPAN Smart Grid Project Pilot Project started in Panipath

What -

  • The project aims to make electricity distribution network smarter and disseminate Japanese technologies in India.
  • To improve capacity of power companies to provide operational know-how concerning power distribution to effectively use smart grid-related technologies to reduce distribution losses and failure rate of distribution transformers.
  • To improve the frequency of power failures, by providing Japanese operational know-how concerning power distribution systems including mastering those technologies.

Enlighten about the project -

  • Installation of smart meters at homes of customers in Panipat to perform data collection as well as monitoring and control through supervisory control system called SCADA.
  • Its purpose is to demonstrate peak load reduction technology, distribution grid monitoring and control technology and power distribution loss reduction technology aimed at power meter tampering, power theft, and omission of bill collection.

Enlighten about the smart grid pilot project

  • The Union Ministry of Power has launched fourteen smart grid pilot projects to modernize power distribution networks in India for building next generation power distribution networks with less electrical waste.
  • The project in Panipat, Haryana is one of the fourteen smart grid pilot projects. Japan’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) had inked Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Haryana Government in December 2015 for demonstration of Smart Grid Pilot Project in Panipat.

International Bodies

Informal Ministerial meeting – March 2018 To be hosted in India

Enlighten about the informal meeting –

  • 40 WTO members from both rich and developing nations are being called by India for this informal meeting to “revitalise” the multi-lateral trade body.
  • The objective of meeting is to discuss ways to revitalise WTO to ensure predictable and transparent system of rule-making in the area of international trade.

Government Schemes

Atal Pension Yojana (APY) Relaxation in norms of APY


  • The Union Finance Ministry

What -

  • Allowed small finance banks and payment banks to offer APY distribution.

Why -

  • The move is expected to help expand coverage of the scheme and strengthen existing channels of APY distribution.
  • Now 11 Payment Banks and 10 Small Finance Banks (SFBs) can also offer APY distribution.

Enlighten about APY

  • APY became operational from June 1, 2015


  • to provide affordable universal access to essential social security protection to unorganized work force of country,
  • It had replaced earlier Swavalamban scheme.
  • It is available to all citizens of India in the age group of 18-40 years (thus minimum period of contribution by subscriber is 20 years).
  • Under scheme, subscriber will receive a minimum guaranteed pension of Rs. 1000 to Rs. 5000 per month, depending on his contribution, from age of 60 years.
  • There is no exit to the scheme before the age of 60.
  • In case of death of subscriber, the spouse of the subscriber shall be entitled for the same amount of pension till his or her death.

State Specific

Mahatma Gandhi SarbatVikas Yojna (MGSVY)

Implementing state

  • Punjab Government

Why –

  • for the welfare of the downtrodden citizen across the state.
  • This scheme is aimed at the inclusive growth of the distressed sections of the society.
  • It will be on the line of Antyodaya principles (Antyodaya’ means rise of the last person) and will be implemented in the state’s rural areas.

Enlighten about Mahatma Gandhi SarbatVikas Yojna (MGSVY)

Objective –

  • to identify poor and distressed households which have been deprived of the benefits of the various welfare schemes launched by state government.
  • It will provide benefit of welfare schemes for debt stressed farmers, poor families that have woman as sole bread earner, out-of-school children, martyred soldiers, families of AIDS patients, differently-abled, abandoned old persons, drug addicts etc.
  • It aims to will give more focus on encouraging voluntary organizations, various civil society organizations, Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and other socially committed persons to contribute to the welfare of the downtrodden. Moreover, under the scheme will be no financial implication.

1st floating market in metro city Floating market –Patauli, South Kolkata

  • located on lake at Patuli in South Kolkata which is 400 metres long and 60 metres wide.
  • The lake has been transformed into the floating market similar to the one in Thailand.

Why –

  • to rehabilitate over 200 shopkeepers from nearby market that was demolished for the widening of Eastern Metropolitan Bypass (EMB) — an important road that connects the northern parts of Kolkata o the eastern and southern tips.


Chhau dance show A traditional Indian Chhau dance show

Where –

  • Will be staged at National Palace Museum in Taipei City

Why –

  • As part of efforts to strengthen cultural exchanges between Taiwan and the South Asian nation.

Organising bodies –

  • Jointly organized by NPM and India-Taipei Association

Enlighten About Chhau dance

  • Chhau features dancers in colorful masks and costumes performing movements inspired by animals, birds, martial arts and tribal and folk customs originating in eastern India
  • The practice was added to UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2010.
  • Chhau shows typically depict episodes from classic Hindu epics.
  • It is found in three styles named after the location where they are performed, ie. the Purulia Chau of Bengal, the Seraikella Chau of Jharkhand, and the Mayurbhanj Chau of Odisha.
  • The dance is traditionally an all males troupe, regionally celebrated particularly during spring every year.

Hrd Ministry

Maitreyi Yatra The closing ceremony of Maitreyi Yatra

Organizers Ministry

  • The Student Exchange Programme is organized by Ministry of Human Resource development.

Enlighten About Maitreyi Yatra

  • It is an exchange programme for schoolchildren as part of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the J&K government and the Ministry of Human Resource Development.
  • The objective of this programme is to integrate the youth of Jammu and Kashmir to the rest of the country and to promote brotherhood and harmony.
  • It provides a good opportunity for the youth of J&K to be acquainted with culture, language and development story of different parts of the country.