Daily Current Affairs

Prelims Prominence - October 18, 2018

Rural Development

Rural development Ministry survey Rural Development Ministry conducts a gap analysis of more than 3.5 lakh villages in the country


  • Kuligod in Karnataka’s Belagavi district is the country’s best developed village
  • More than a third of the gram panchayats ranked in the top 10 are in Andhra Pradesh, according to the findings of an ongoing Rural Development Ministry survey.
  • There are 97 panchayats in the top 10 ranks. Of these, 37 panchayats are in Andhra Pradesh while 24 are in Tamil Nadu.
  • Villages from other States are represented only in single digits.
  • Of the States going to the polls next month, Telengana and Madhya Pradesh have five and four panchayats in the top 10 ranks respectively.

Connect to the survey

  • The Rural Development Ministry has done a gap analysis of more than 3.5 lakh villages, in more than 1.6 lakh panchayats under the Mission Antyodaya convergence scheme.
  • A team of officials surveyed and scored village level facilities and amenities using parameters related to infrastructure, economic development and livelihood, irrigation facilities, health, nutrition and sanitation, women’s empowerment, and financial inclusion.
  • The exercise is expected to cover all of the country’s 2.5 lakh panchayats by the end of November.
  • At the national level, the data shows progress in some areas and also spotlights discrepancies in respect of targets met under some other government schemes.

Regarding electricity and sanitation

  • The survey reveals that more than 95% of villages have electricity available for domestic use, while the government had earlier this year claimed that 100% of villages had power connections.
  • Similarly with regard to sanitation, the survey shows only 58% of villages — slightly more than 2 lakh of the 3.5 lakh surveyed villages — are open defecation free (ODF).
  • According to the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan-Gramin, 5.13 lakh of India’s 6 lakh villages are already ODF.
  • The survey also shows only 21% of villages having a community waste disposal system.
  • About a quarter of all villages have more than 75% of households using clean energy, such as LPG or biogas.


India, China set to resume drill Chengdu(China) to host event in December


  • India and China will resume the annual joint Army exercise ‘Hand-in-Hand’ in December in China’s Chengdu region
  • The drill was cancelled last year due to tense relations in the aftermath of the Doklam standoff.
  • The Exercise Planning Conference is scheduled to be held from November 1-3 at Chengdu in China to work out the modalities of the exercise
  • Following the Wuhan summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping in April, the two countries have initiated several measures to normalise relations.

Connect to the exercise

  • About 175 personnel from each side will take part.
  • The Indian side would be represented by troops from the 11 Sikh Light regiment under the Northern Command.
  • The scope of the exercise is to understand transnational terrorism and evolve joint drills for the conduct of counter terrorism operations, in addition to Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief operations.

In three phases

  • The exercise will be held in three phases — familiarisation, basic training and the joint exercise.
  • Separately, the Army has for the first time organised a forward area tour to Leh on October 16 and 17 for interested foreign service attaches posted in India.


Anna Burns wins Booker Prize Milkman - talks of political and sexual oppression in the 1970s in Northern Ireland


  • Anna Burns has won the prestigious Man Booker Prize for fiction for Milkman, a vibrant, violent story about men, women, conflict and power set during Northern Ireland’s years of Catholic-Protestant violence.

Connect to Ms. Burns

  • Ms. Burns is the first writer from Northern Ireland to win the £50,000 (48 lakh) prize, which is open to English-language authors from around the world.
  • Milkman is narrated by a bookish young woman dealing with an older man who uses family ties, social pressure and political loyalties as weapons of sexual coercion and harassment.
  • It is set in the 1970s, but was published amid the global eruption of sexual misconduct allegations that sparked the “Me Too” movement.

Connect to the prize

  • The Man Booker Prize for Fiction (formerly known as the Booker–McConnell Prize and commonly known simply as the Booker Prize) is a literary prize awarded each year for the best original novel written in the English language and published in the UK.
  • The winner of the Man Booker Prize is generally assured international renown and success; therefore, the prize is of great significance for the book trade.
  • From its inception, only novels written by Commonwealth, Irish, and South African (and later Zimbabwean) citizens were eligible to receive the prize; in 2014, however, this eligibility was widened to any English-language novel—a change which proved controversial.


Swasth Bharat Yatra

Launched by

  • The Union Government in association with the states and Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).


  • ‘Swasth Bharat Yatra’ campaign on occasion of World Food Day 16 October
  • To sensitise people about eating safe food and be healthy.

Connect to Swasth Bharat Yatra national campaign

  • A pan-India cycle rally is being organized to create consumer awareness about eating safe and nutritious food for becoming healthy and combating food adulteration.
  • In this rally, about 7,500 cyclists are expected to participate in over 18,000 km travelling across six tracks through almost every state and UT over 100 days to propagate a powerful message ‘Eat Right India’.
  • The cyclathon will culminate in the national capital on January 27, 2019.

Science & Technology

CSIR develops affordable Water Disinfection System “OneerTM”


  • Council of Scientific and Industrial Research ,Indian Institute of Toxicology Research (CSIR-IITR), Lucknow has developed an innovative technology for “Drinking Water Disinfection System” with Trade name “OneerTM”


  • It is useful for continuous treatment of water and eliminates all disease causing pathogens such as virus, bacteria, fungi, protozoa and cyst to provide safe drinking water to domestic and communities settings as per National and International standards prescribed for potable water (BIS, WHO etc.).
  • Oneer developed by CSIR-IITR ,will provide access to safe and clean drinking water at a cost of just 2 Paise / Ltr. Dr.
  • The technology will be helpful especially for rural people since it can be solar powered and this development is in line with the ‘Make in India’ Mission

Sources – PIB ,The Hindu, Indianexpress