Daily Current Affairs

Prelims Prominence - July 26, 2018

Parliament Affairs

Speaker’s Research Initiative


  • The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, graced and addressed the commemoration of the 3rdanniversary of the Speaker’s Research Initiative (SRI) of the Lok Sabha in New Delhi
  • The role of Parliament and Legislatures in democracy is to discuss, debate and decide. Occasionally, this process may entail an element of dissent.
  • Due to the combination of these five Ds - discussion, debate, dissent, decorum and decision, the biggest D – democracy is strengthened.

Enlighten about Speaker’s Research Initiative (SRI)

  • It is the brainchild of the Hon’ble Lok Sabha Speaker, Smt. Sumitra Mahajan.
  • It was inaugurated on 23 July 2015 by Hon’ble Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi.
  • It seeks to assist members of parliament in playing a more effective role in law-making, parliamentary debates, oversight of governance and to respond to the ever increasing, ever more complex issues of national and international importance.
  • It is an organ of the Lok Sabha that works under the guidance and supervision of the Hon'ble Speaker of the Lok Sabha.
  • SRI has at present nine members. Each member is an acknowledged expert in his or her field. It is served by a dedicated administrative team of the Lok Sabha Secretariat.

Ministry of Culture

Safeguarding the Intangible Cultural Heritage and Diverse Cultural Traditions of India’ Scheme


  • Scheme titled ‘Safeguarding the Intangible Cultural Heritage and Diverse Cultural Traditions of India’ is being implemented by the Ministry of Culture


  • Reinvigorating and revitalizing various institutions, groups, individuals, identified non-MoC institutions, non-government organisations, researchers and scholars so that they may engage in activities/ projects for strengthening, protecting, preserving and promoting the rich intangible cultural heritage of India.

Implementing body

  • The scheme is being implemented through Sangeet Natak Akademi, an autonomous organisation under the Ministry of Culture.
  • Many proposals regarding safeguarding of intangible cultural heritages received from Madhya Pradesh have been approved under the scheme since its inception.


Enlighten about Nilgiri mountain train

  • Nilgiri Mountain Railway (NMR) —which is in the UNESCO’s list of World Heritage sites — Southern Railway

Enlighten about the Nilgiri Mountain

  • The Nilgiri Mountains literally blue hills) form part of the Western Ghats in western Tamil Nadu of Southern India.
  • At least 24 of the Nilgiri Mountains' peaks are above 2,000 metres (6,600 ft), the highest peak being Doddabetta, at 2,637 metres (8,652 ft)

Ministry of Women and Child Development

2nd meeting of National Council on India’s Nutrition Challenges under POSHAN Abhiyaan Month of September to be celebrated as National Nutrition Month every year


  • Ministry of Women and Child Development, Government of India has organized 2nd meeting of National Council on India’s Nutrition Challenges under POSHAN Abhiyaan

Enlighten about POSHAN Abhiyaan

  • The Government of India has set-up POSHAN Abhiyaan (National Nutrition Mission) which was launched by the Central Governmenton 8thMarch, 2018 from Jhunjhunu, Rajasthan.
  • 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 Children, as also, focus on Adolescent Girls, Pregnant Women & Lactating Mothers, thus holistically addressing malnutrition.
  • POSHAN Abhiyaan aims to ensure service delivery and interventions by use of technology, behavioural change through convergence and lays-down specific targets to be achieved across different monitoring parameters over the next few years.

MoU with NASSCOM likely

  • Ministry of Women and Child Development has desired to get associated with NASSCOM Foundation.
  • It was intimated that an MoU is likely to be signed with NASSCOM Foundation by Ministry of Women and Child Development for roll-out and implementation of POSHAN Abhiyaan across all 36 States/UTs by developing partnerships with corporates, social organisations and business houses for creating a Jan Andolan on Nutrition across the Country.

National Institute of Nutrition

  • Ministry of Women and Child Development with the assistance of National Institute of Nutrition is in the process of developing on-line course for nutrition.
  • Three of the modules were presented during the meeting. These courses are planned to be hosted independently by MoW&CD (POSHAN Abhiyaan) and National Institute of Nutrition portals.

Enlighten about The National Institute of Nutrition (NIN)

  • It is an Indian Public health, Biotechnology and Translational research center located in Hyderabad, India.
  • The institute is one of the oldest research centers in India, and the largest center, under the Indian Council of Medical Research, located in the vicinity of Osmania University.
  • The institute has associated clinical and pediatric nutrition research wards at various hospitals such as the Niloufer Hospital for Women and Children, the Government Maternity Hospital, the Gandhi Medical College and the Osmania General Hospital in Hyderabad.

Trade and Commerce

Invest India and Business France Sign MoU to Promote Investment


  • Invest India and Business France have signed an MoU to promote investment facilitation and cooperation between startups of India and France.


  • The goal will be to facilitate direct foreign investment by providing practical investment information to enterprises and support the companies pursuing those opportunities which contribute positively to economic growth of the two countries.

Enlighten about the MoU

  • Invest India and Business France will collaborate to promote business and startup ecosystem cooperation through joint activities and exchange experiences to strengthen institutional knowledge and identify opportunities between businesses in the French and Indian private sector, creating a dedicated support structure to facilitate inbound companies and startups.
  • The partnership will strengthen the existing business relations between India and France and provide a seamless facilitation channel for new businesses and innovations from India and France to grow in the French and Indian markets.

Enlighten about Invest India

  • It is the official Investment Promotion and Facilitation Agency of the Government of India, mandated to facilitate investments in the country.
  • It is the first stop for potential global investors in the country.
  • India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world which has not only sustained global downturn of 2008-09 but is also slated to grow at consistently higher rates during next few decades.

Enlighten about Business France

  • It is an executive agency of the French government under the supervision of the Minister for Economic Affairs and Finance and the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development.
  • It promotes International Business Development for French companies and professionals through a worldwide network

Bilateral Relations

India and Rwanda

  • Both the countries have signed eight agreements in the fields of defence, trade, agriculture, leather and allied products and dairy.
  • The agreements were signed following delegation-level talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Rwandan President Paul Kagame Kigali, the capital city of Rwanda.
  • PM Modi became the first Indian Prime Minister to visit Rwanda.

Enlighten about the Bilateral meetings

  • India extended two lines of cred (LoCs) worth $200 million to Rwanda for development of industrial parks an Kigali Special Economic Zone (SEZ) and for development of three agriculture projects in Rwanda.
  • Opening of the first India diplomatic mission in Rawanda, which will help to establish communication between governments of two countries and also enable facilities for consulate passport and visa.
  • To set up task force to enable digital learning mediums for children.
  • Cooperation in field of Agriculture and Animal Resources
  • Agreement on Cooperation Defence on Capacity Building, Defence Industry, Science and Technology

India and Uganda

  • Both the countries have signed four MoUs in the areas of defence cooperation, visa exemption for official an diplomatic passport holders, cultural exchange programme and material testing laboratory.
  • Agreement between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Uganda President Yoweri Museveni in Kampala.

Enlighten about the agreement

  • MoU on Defence Cooperation MoU on Visa exemption for Diplomatic and official passport holders.
  • MoU on Cultural Exchange Programme.
  • MoU on Material Testing Laboratory.
  • India has announced two Lines of Credit worth nearly US $200 million to Uganda energy, infrastructure, agriculture and dairy sectors.
  • India announced to continue to play a stable partner in the country’s journey toward development.
  • It also announced to give vehicles, ambulances and cancer therapy machine to Uganda.
  • India retired its commitment of training, capacity building and infrastructure creation are core areas of cooperation between both countries.

State Specific

Green Mahanadi Mission

Concerned State

  • Odisha Government


  • a plantation drive under which 2 crore sapling will be planted along Mahanadi river and its tributaries.

Enlighten about Green Mahanadi Mission

  • The main objective of the mission is to stop soil erosion on river banks an recharge the groundwater reserve.
  • It also aims to protect the Mahanadi Rive and keep it alive.
  • Under this mission, more than 5 crore saplings will be planted over an area of 41,000 hectares along the banks of Mahanadi river and its tributaries Ib and Tel rivers.
  • It will be implemented jointly by State Departments of Forest, Horticulture and Watershed Development.

Enlighten about Mahanadi

  • Mahanadi is major river in East Central India.
  • It drains an area of around 141,600 square kilometres and has total course of 858 kilometres.
  • It flow through Chhattisgarh and Odisha. It originates from highlands of Chhattisgarh through collection of array of streams and reaches Bay of Bengal.
  • It left ban tributaries are Shivnath, Mand, Ib, Hasdeo and right bank are Ong, parry rive Jonk, Telen.


Nation Culture Fund (NCF)


  • Rs. 904.80 Lakhs for conservation and maintenance world of historical monuments as contributions part of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) under Nation Culture Fund (NCF) has been received by the Ministry of Culture

Sources of Revenue collection

  • Sources like ticketing, Parking, photograph filming, and from holding cultural events from selected centrally protected monument which has been deposited in Consolidated Fund of India.

Enlighten about National Culture Fund (NCF)

  • NCF was established as Trust under Charitable Endowment Act, 1890 a funding mechanism distinct from existing sources and patterns of funding for arts and culture in India.
  • It aims at inviting individuals as well as private institutions in the task of promoting, protecting and preserving India’s culture heritage.
  • It is managed and administered by council headed by Union Culture Minister and decides the policies.
  • Its Executive Committee is headed by Secretary Ministry of Culture which actualizes those policies.
  • All projects undertaken by NCF are completed within specified period in accordance with MoU signed by it with concerned donor organization.
  • Union Government had granted one-time corpus fund to NCF, apart from this there is no fund allocated by to.
  • It receives contributions and voluntary donations as endowments from many other sources.
  • Donations and contributions to NCF are eligible for 100% tax deduction under Income Ta Act, 1961 subject to limits and conditions prescribed.

Sources – PIB , The Hindu , Indian Express