Daily Current Affairs

Prelims Prominence - June 12, 2018

Ministry of Railways

Rail Madad-(Mobile Application for Desired Assistance During travel) An App to expedite &streamline passenger grievance redressal

  • Ministry of Railways has launched a new App “Rail Madad” – An App to expedite & streamline passenger grievance redressal.
  • RPGRAMS (Railway Passenger Grievance Redressal and Management System),
  • Developed by Northern Railway (Delhi Division)

Enlighten about the work domain of this new app

  • ‘Rail Madad’ – a mobile App to register complaints by passengers through mobile phone/web.
  • It relays real time feedback to passengers on the status of redressal of their complaints- the passenger gets an instant ID through SMS on registration of complaint followed by a customized SMS communicating the action taken thereon by Railway.
  • RPGRAMS integrates all the passenger complaints received from multiple modes (14 offline/online modes currently) on a single platform, analyzes them holistically and generates various types of management reports which enable the top management to continuously monitor the pace of grievance redressal

Salient features of Rail Madad application are-

  • Rail MADAD (Mobile Application for Desired Assistance During travel) registers a complaint with minimum inputs from passenger(option of photo also available), issues unique ID instantly and relays the complaint online to relevant field officials for immediate action.
  • The action taken on complaint is also relayed to passenger through SMS, thus fast tracking the entire process of redressal of complaints through digitisation.
  • Rail MADAD also displays various helpline numbers (e.g., Security, Child helpline etc) and provides direct calling facility for immediate assistance in one easy step
  • All modes of filing complaints including offline and online modes are being integrated on a single platform
  • The data analysis would also generate trends on various performance parameters of a selected train/station like cleanliness, amenities etc thus making managerial decision more precise and effective.

Ministry of Human Resource Development

First Hardware edition of Smart India Hackathon 2018

  • The Ministry of HRD along with AICTE, Persistent Systems, i4C and IIT Kharagpur is all set to host the Grand Finale of Smart India Hackathon 2018 – Hardware edition from Jun 18-22, 2018.
  • This has become an important vehicle for scouting new ideas and help them convert them into products and businesses.

Enlighten about The SIH2018 – Hardware edition

  • It is the first of its kind innovative initiative by Ministry of HRD to provide national platform to young technical minds of India to showcase their disruptive innovations and creative products which can bring out revolutionary changes in crucial sectors like agriculture, health, clean water, waste management, automotive, smart communication, and education.
  • The Smart India Hackathon 2018 – Hardware edition is nationwide hardware product development competition happening in India.
  • It will give the technical students from our nation a chance to convert their innovative ideas into products with help of industry mentors, exhibit them to investors and get a chance to be one of the upcoming Start up initiatives.
  • The Hardware edition is the sub-edition of SIH2018.

Enlighten about the grand finale

  • The Grand Finale of the Hardware Hackathon will be a 5 days event and will take place simultaneously at 10 prestigious institutions (Nodal centers) across Ind
  • The winning team may also get support from investors who are willing to invest in the products and make them market ready.

Support to startups

  • Ministry of HRD is working closely with Dept. of Science and Technology to explore the possibility of handholding the winning teams for creating startups with the support from various Technology Business incubators (TBIs) across India.

Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation

Ten new Swachh Iconic Places launched under Swachh Bharat Mission

Ten new iconic sites, namely

- RaghavendraSwamy Temple (Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh)
- Hazardwari Palace (Murshidabad, West Bengal)
- Brahma Sarovar Temple (Kurukshetra, Haryana)
- VidurKuti (Bijnor, Uttar Pradesh); Mana village (Chamoli, Uttarakhand)
- Pangong Lake (Leh-Ladakh, J&K)
- Nagvasuki Temple (Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh)
- ImaKeithal/market (Imphal, Manipur)
- Sabarimala Temple (Kerala) and
- Kanvashram (Uttarakhand)

  • These places have been taken up under Phase III of the flagship project Swachh Iconic Places (SIP) of the Swachh Bharat Mission.
  • The project envisioned by the Prime Minister is being coordinated by Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation with the support of State governments and local administration.
  • The consultation is in process for finalising the PSUs/corporates for extending support to new sites as CSR partners.
  • These new sites have joined the 20 iconic places under Phase I & II where special Sanitation work is already underway.

Enlighten about Phase I of Swatch iconic places

  • Launched in 2016 and it includes
  • Ajmer Sharif Dargah, CST Mumbai ,Golden Temple, Kamakhya Temple, MaikarnikaGhat, Meenakshi Temple, Shri Mata Vaishno Devi, Shree Jagannath Temple, The Taj Mahal and Tirupati Temple.

Enlighten about Phase II of Swachh Iconic Places

  • It was launched in Nov 2017 and it includes
  • Gangotri, Yamunotri, Mahakaleshwar Temple, Charminar, Convent and Church of St. Francis of Assissi, Kalady, Gommateswara, BaidyanathDham, Gaya Tirth and Somnath temple.

Enlighten about Swachh Iconic Places

  • SIP is a collaborative project with three other central Ministries: Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, M/o Culture, and M/o Tourism.
  • It also involves local administrations in the concerned States and Public Sector and Private Companies as sponsoring partners.
  • The third phase of SIP was today launched at Mana village which is situated close to the Badrinath temple in Uttarakhand.
  • The village, which now becomes a Swachh Iconic Place, is visited by tourists and pilgrims as it houses places of mythological interest.


Credit Enhancement Fund (CEF)


  • Rs.500 crore Credit Enhancement Fund (CEF) is probably going to launch by the government in July 2018


  • To facilitate infrastructure investments by insurance and pension funds.

Enlighten about Credit Enhancement Fund (CEF)

  • It will provide credit enhancement for infrastructure projects
  • This credit enhancement helps in upgrading credit ratings of bonds issued by infrastructure companies and facilitate investment from investors like pension and insurance funds.
  • The initial corpus of the fund will be Rs 500 crore and will be sponsored by IIFCL (India Infrastructure Finance Company).
  • It will operate as a non-banking finance company (NBFC).
  • IIFCL will hold 22.5% stake in the NBFC, while Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has been offered by the Government to pick up 10% stake.

Enlighten about the statics of infra investment

  • Presently only $110 billion is being invested in infrastructure in India, against requirement of $200 billion, this classifies India as infrastructure deficit country.
  • In India most of the infrastructure project financing is done by banking system.
  • But the banking system is struggling with the problem of non-performing assets (NPAs).
  • So there is need for the private sector to invest more actively on the infrastructure projects
  • CEF will serve as alternative for rising of money for infrastructure projects through corporate bonds.

International Organisations


  • The UN General Assembly has elected Belgium, the Dominican Republic, Germany, Indonesia and South Africa to serve as non-permanent members on the Security Council for two years
  • The five new members will replace Bolivia, Ethiopia, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands and Sweden

Enlighten about the 15 members of UNSC (permanent and temperory)

  • There are 15 members on the UN Security Council, including the five permanent ones — Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States — and 10 non-permanent members, half of which are elected each year.
  • Each candidate country needed to secure two thirds of the votes in order to clinch a seat.

Enlighten about UNSC

  • The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is one of the organs of the United Nations and is charged with the maintenance of international peace and security.
  • Its powers include the establishment of peacekeeping operations, the establishment of international sanctions, and the authorization of military action through Security Council resolutions; it is the only UN body with the authority to issue binding resolutions to member states.
  • The Security Council consists of fifteen members. Russia, the United Kingdom, France, China, and the United States—serve as the body’s five permanent members.
  • These permanent members can veto any substantive Security Council resolution, including those on the admission of new member states or candidates for Secretary-General.
  • The Security Council also has 10 non-permanent members, elected on a regional basis to serve two-year terms. The body’s presidency rotates monthly among its members.

Digital India

Wi – Fi Choupals

Launched by

  • The Union Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeITY)
  • MeITY has launched 5000 Wi-Fi Choupals in villages in partnership with common service centres (CSCs).

Enlighten about the Wi-Fi Choupals

  • The aim of Wi-Fi Choupals is to transform rural Internet connectivity through BharatNet.
  • The main objective is the development of rural Wi-Fi infrastructure and to host suitable applications to provide various ICT services at an affordable cost.
  • They will provide 60,000 WiFi hotspots in rural areas enabling people effective Internet access for their various digital processes.

Enlighten about BharatNet

  • Wi-Fi Choupals are in addition to broadband connectivity provided gram panchyats through optical fibre network under BharatNet.
  • BharatNet is Centre’s rural internet connectivity programme which is implemented by Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL).
  • It is world’s largest rural broadband connectivity programme using Optical fibre.
  • The project is being funded by Universal service Obligation Fund
  • It seeks to connect all of India’s households, particularly the rural areas, through demand, affordable broadband connectivity of 2 Mbps to 20 Mbps to realise vision of Digital India.

Ministry of Defence

India-Nepal Joint Ex SURYA KIRAN-XIII

  • Exercise SURYA KIRAN-XIII, a joint military training exercise between India & Nepal culminated today at Pithoragarh, wherein the troops of both Armies participated in 14-day long joint training based on counter terrorist operations.

Sources – PIB, The Hindu, Indian Express