+91 9004418746enquiry.aashah@gmail.com
+91 9004078746aashahs.ias@gmail.com

Current Events 21 March 2017

 

NEWS

21 March 2017

Sr. No.

Topic

News

1.

GS III: ECONOMY

Vodafone, Idea merger creates India's biggest telecom firm

2.

GS III: ENVIRONMENT

Green nod for Neutrino project suspended

3.

GS III: ENVIRONMENT

Ganga, Yamuna termed ‘living persons'

4.

GS II: SOCIAL-HEALTH

Circular worries medical institutes

5.

GS II: SOCIAL-EDUCATION

Internships may soon be a must for technical degrees

6.

GS I: CULTURE

Clean Padmanabhaswamy temple tanks by May 15: SC

7.

GS II : GS II: BILATERAL INDIA-PAKISTAN

Kishenganga off the menu in Indus talks

8.

GS III : ECONOMY- REPORTS

Norway is the world's happiest country

9.

GS II : GS II: BILATERAL INDIA-AFGHANISTAN

New Delhi, Kabul talks soon to boost trade

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GS III: ECONOMY

Vodafone, Idea merger creates India's biggest telecom firm

  • Kumar Mangalam Birla led Idea Cellular has agreed to merge Indian unit of U.K.-headquartered Vodafone Plc with itself, making it $23 billion telco giant.
  • The merged entity becomes India's largest mobile telephony and data service provider with 39.25 crore customers, ahead of the current market leader Airtel, which has a 26.44 crore user base.
  • Both figures are provided by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India.
  • Kumar Mangalam Birla will be the chairperson of the merged entity.
  • As per the terms of the deal, Vodafone will own 45.1% of the merged entity and Idea will have a 26% stake, while the rest will be owned by public shareholders after the merger, expected to be completed next year.
  • Idea Cellular has the right to acquire more shares from Vodafone under an agreed mechanism with a view to equalising the shareholdings over time.
  • The move, though not surprising, has stoked rumours that the current tariff war, initiated by the Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio's entry into the high-speed data market in 2016, will possibly come to an end in the near future.

Vodafone, Idea merger creates India's biggest telecom firm | Latest Current Affairs 21st March 2017 

GS III: ENVIRONMENT - NGT

Green nod for Neutrino project suspended

  • The Southern Bench of the National Green Tribunal suspended the Environmental Clearance (EC) granted to the India-based Neutrino Observatory (INO) that was to come up in Theni and asked the project proponent to make a fresh application.
  • During the arguments, the Tribunal was informed that the Madhikettan Shola National Park in Idukki district of Kerala was just about 4.9 km from the proposed project site and the Tamil Nadu-Kerala border was just a kilometre away, making it a Category ‘A' project.
  • The MoEF had called it a Category ‘B' project, for which an Environment Impact Assessment is not necessary, but the department processed it as an additional measure, a source said.
  • However, under the guidelines laid down by the Ministry, any project that falls within 5 km from an inter-State boundary or within a notified national park or a sanctuary has to be considered a Category ‘A' project that involves a number of processes before an EC is granted, the source said.
  • Since it was near a national park, the INO was also asked to get clearance from the National Board for Wildlife.
  • Taking into account these new facts, the Bench disposed off the petition and asked the INO to make a fresh application.
Green nod for Neutrino project suspended | Latest Current Affairs 21st March 2017

India-based Neutrino Observatory (INO)

  • The India-based Neutrino Observatory (INO) Project is a multi-institutional effort aimed at building a world-class underground laboratory with a rock cover of approx.1200 m for non-accelerator based high energy and nuclear physics research in India. The initial goal of INO is to study neutrinos.
  • The project includes:

(a)    construction of an underground laboratory and associated surface facilities at Pottipuram in Bodi West hills of Theni District of Tamil Nadu,

(b)   construction of a Iron Calorimeter (ICAL) detector for studying neutrinos, consisting of 50000 tons of magnetized iron plates arranged in stacks with gaps in between where Resistive Plate Chambers (RPCs) would be inserted as active detectors, the total number of 2m X 2m RPCs being around 29000, and 

(c)    setting up of National Centre for High Energy Physics at Madurai, for the operation and maintenance of the underground laboratory, human resource development and detector R&D along with its applications.

Neutrinos:

  • Neutrinos are fundamental particles belonging to the lepton family. They come in three flavours, one associated with electrons and the others with their heavier cousins the muon and the Tau.
  • According to standard model of particle physics, they are mass-less.
  • However recent experiments indicate that these charge-neutral fundamental particles, have finite but small mass which is unknown.
  • Determination of neutrino masses and mixing parameters is one of the most important open problems in physics today. 

 

GS III: ENVIRONMENT POLLUTION

Ganga, Yamuna termed ‘living persons'

  • In a first in the country, the Uttarakhand High Court, on 20 March 2017, declared that the rivers Ganga and Yamuna were "living persons."
  • On March 15, New Zealand river Whanganui became the first in the world to be granted a legal human status.
  • While hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) petition filed by one Mohammad Salim in 2014, it gave a landmark judgment stating that the Ganga and the Yamuna must be treated as living entities.
  • "The Ganga and [the] Yamuna, all their tributaries, streams... are declared as juristic [or] legal persons [or] living entities having the status of a legal person with all corresponding rights, duties and liabilities of a living person in order to preserve and conserve river Ganga and Yamuna," said the court order.
  • The two rivers, which are sacred for the Hindus, sustain millions of people in the country.
  • However, they have been in a state of neglect and even though several government initiatives, including the Centre's Namami Gange programme, are aimed at restoring their health, not much has been achieved yet.
  • The court ordered that the Director of the Namami Gange programme, the Uttarakhand Chief Secretary, and the Advocate-General of Uttarakhand would serve as "parents" for the rivers and would be the human faces to "protect, conserve and preserve" the rivers and their tributaries.

 Ganga, Yamuna termed ‘living persons' | Latest Current Affairs 21st March 2017

 

GS III: ENVIRONMENT POLLUTION Ganga, Yamuna termed ‘living persons' | Latest Current Affairs 21st March 2017 

 

GS II: SOCIAL-HEALTH

Circular worries medical institutes

  • The Union Finance Ministry's circular to all centrally- funded autonomous institutions asking them to generate 30% of the additional financial impact incurred on implementing the 7th Pay Commission has left healthcare institutions wondering how they would do it without burdening patients.
  • Most institutions have now written to the Union Finance Ministry's Department of Expenditure explaining the difficulty.
  • The circular, issued on January 13, will impact nearly 600 autonomous bodies in the country, including major hospitals such as the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER) and the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuroscience (NIMHANS), apart from around 200 commodity bodies, an equal number of research organisations and educational institutions, including the Kendriya Vidyalayas and Navodaya Vidyalayas.
  • The worst affected are hospitals for whom it may be inevitable to hike patient user charges if they have to generate the funds.

 

GS II: SOCIAL-EDUCATION

Internships may soon be a must for technical degrees

  • Technical education institutions in India will soon have internships as a mandatory requirement for the award of degrees.
  • The All-India Council for Technical Education - the regulator for maintaining norms and standards in technical education - has set the ball rolling to make internships a mandatory part of technical education in the country.
  • "For a beginning, we are asking institutions providing technical education to arrange for internships for 75% of their students. We will also help by trying to get industry bodies and MSMEs on board for this. The institutions can then contact these bodies to facilitate internships," said a senior official of the AICTE who did not wish to be named.
  • "Once we get this process streamlined, we will in about three years make internships a mandatory requirement for the award of degrees."
  • In other words, while the onus would first be on the technical educational institutions to put in place systemic arrangements to facilitate internships, it would soon transform into a regime where the onus would also be on the students to intern somewhere to become eligible for the degree.
  • "The final vision is to ensure that those who pass out have interned and thus have experience of industry pace and requirements," an official said.
  • The purview of the AICTE is vast: it covers programmes of technical education, including training and research, in engineering, technology, architecture, town planning, management, pharmacy, applied arts and crafts, hotel management and catering technology, etc.
  • The Ministry of Human Resource Development - under which the AICTE is an autonomous institution - has also been in the loop regarding this change.
  • Internships, it is felt, would make the students more industry-ready, providing a set of hands-on skills and experience of the work environment in the industry to complement their academic and theoretical insights into their discipline.

 

GS I: CULTURE

Clean Padmanabhaswamy temple tanks by May 15: SC

  • The Supreme Court directed the Kerala Water Authority to clean the water tanks of Sri Padmanabhaswamy temple and take measures to stop sewage and construction debris from flowing inside the temple premises.

Padmanabhaswamy Temple 

  • Padmanabhaswamy Temple is located in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India.
  • The temple is built in an intricate fusion of the indigenous Kerala style and the Dravidian style (kovil) of architecture associated with the temples located in the neighboring state of Tamil Nadu, featuring high walls, and a 16th-century Gopuram.
  • While the Moolasthanam of the temple is the Ananthapuram Temple in Kasargod, architecturally to some extent, the temple is a replica of the Adikesava Perumal temple located in Kanyakumari District.
  • It is the richest Hindu temple in the world.
  • In terms of gold assets and precious stones, it is by far the wealthiest institution and place of worship of any kind in the recorded history of the world, with an estimated $22 billion worth of gold and jewels stored in underground vaults (not accounting for historical value).
  • The principal deity Vishnu is enshrined in the "Anantha Shayanam" posture, the eternal yogic sleep on the serpent Adisheshan.
  • Sree Padmanabhaswamy is the tutelary deity of the royal family of Travancore.
  • The titular Maharaja of Travancore Moolam Thirunal Rama Varma is the trustee of the temple as Sree Padmanabhadasa, the slave of Lord Padmanabha.
  • In line with the Temple Entry Proclamation, only those who profess the Hindu faith are permitted entry to the temple and devotees have to strictly follow the dress code.
  • The name of the city of Thiruvananthapuram in Malayalam translates to "The City of Lord Ananta", referring to the deity of Padmanabhaswamy Temple.

Clean Padmanabhaswamy temple tanks by May 15: SC | Latest Current Affairs 21st March 2017

 

GS II: BILATERAL INDIA-PAKISTAN

Kishenganga off the menu in Indus talks

  • India and Pakistan began discussions on the Indus Water Commission on 20 March 2017 after 22 months amid optimism that the meeting may lead to resumption of the composite dialogue between the neighbours.
  • After the first day of talks, officials on both sides said the meeting was held in a cordial manner, and they had frank discussions.
  • P.P. Saxena, Indus Water Commissioner of India, is leading a 10-member delegation in talks with his Pakistani counterpart, Mirza Asif Baig.
  • Because of the Pakistani position, Kishenganga and Ratle were not discussed in the latest round of talks. But the designs of the Pakal Dul, Lower Kalnai and Miyar hydroelectric plants were taken up.
  • The talks will conclude in Islamabad on 21 March 2017, though the earlier plan was to do so in Lahore.
  • The talks were suspended in May 2015 after the Pakistani Commissioner objected to the designs of the Kishenganga and the Ratle hydropower projects of India.
  • Last year, the secretaries of power of both countries agreed to third-party resolution through the World Bank.
  • But the World Bank announced late last year that Pakistan and India should hold bilateral talks.
  • Following the World Bank's reluctance to pass an order, both sides would meet in Washington in April on the Ratle project.

Kishenganga off the menu in Indus talks | Latest Current Affairs 21st March 2017

 

GS III : ECONOMY- REPORTS

Norway is the world's happiest country

  • A chilly climate isn't keeping Norway from basking in the glow of being named the world's happiest country.
  • It surged from fourth place in last year's UN assessment all the way to the top spot, according to the World Happiness Report 2017 released on 20 March 2017.
  • Other top countries on the list included Nordic neighbours Denmark and Iceland, as well as nearby Switzerland.
  • "All of the top four countries rank highly on all the main factors found to support happiness: caring, freedom, generosity, honesty, health, income and good governance," the summary explained.
  • Rounding out the top 10 were Finland, in fifth place, the Netherlands (6), Canada (7), New Zealand (8), and Australia and Sweden tied for 9th.
  • The entire top 10 were affluent, developed nations, although money is not the only ingredient for happiness, the report said.
  • In fact, among the wealthier countries the differences in happiness levels had a lot to do with "differences in mental health, physical health and personal relationships: the biggest single source of misery is mental illness", the report said.
  • Another major country, China, has made major economic strides in recent years. But its people are not happier than 25 years ago, the report found.
  • China ranked 79th in the study of 155 countries.
  • The World Happiness Report 2017 was released by the United Nations on the International Day of Happiness. It is the fifth such report since the first was published in 2012.

 

Norway is the world's happiest country | Latest Current Affairs 21st March 2017

GS III : ECONOMY- REPORTS Norway is the world's happiest country | Latest Current Affairs 21st March 2017

GS II: BILATERAL INDIA-AFGHANISTAN

New Delhi, Kabul talks soon to boost trade

  • India will soon hold talks with Afghanistan on ways to boost bilateral trade and investment.
  • The first such meeting since January 2014 and the first during the tenure of the NDA Government led by Mr. Narendra Modi, is also aimed at mounting pressure on Islamabad to facilitate trouble-free transit of goods from India to Afghanistan through Pakistan (Wagah-Attari route), official sources told.
  • This is to help in the development of Afghanistan which is a land-locked and Least Developed Country (LDC) as well as to boost trade and investment in South Asia through better regional connectivity, the sources said.
  • They said it will also help India to improve trade ties with Central Asian nations.
  • In this regard, the ‘India- Afghanistan Joint Working Group on Trade, Commerce and Investment' meeting will discuss ways to make use of the United Nations TIR (Transports Internationaux Routiers or International Road Transport) Convention to boost trade between India and Afghanistan through Pakistan.
  • The TIR Convention facilitates trade and international road transport by permitting customs-sealed vehicles and containers to transit nations without them being generally inspected at border crossings.
  • Thanks to the Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement (APTTA), Afghanistan can use Pakistan's territory for transit trade while Pakistan's goods can move through Afghanistan to nations bordering Afghanistan.
  • In the absence of transit route through Pakistan, India depends on other countries, including Iran, to send goods to Afghanistan even though it increases time and costs for Indian exporters.
  • India is also planning to strengthen air cargo links with Afghanistan as well as help expedite the development of Chabahar Port in Iran to bypass the Pakistan route to increase trade relations with Afghanistan, Iran and Central Asian countries.

 




UPSC Prelims 2017 Online Test Series Gs Paper, English or Hindi Medium. GS Test Series, Prelims 2017 Test Series, 2017 UPSC Prelims IAS Test Series

Free Guidance for IAS Aspirants - UPSC Exam Preparation

Free Video lectures of guidance sessions, seminars, workshops for UPSC Civil Services Exam and preparation. Free Study Material for IAS Exam Counselling

Current Affairs News Covered:

GS III: ECONOMY - Vodafone, Idea merger creates India's biggest telecom firm.
GS III: ENVIRONMENT - Green nod for Neutrino project suspended.
GS III: ENVIRONMENT - Ganga, Yamuna termed ‘living persons'.
GS II: SOCIAL-HEALTH - Circular worries medical institutes.
GS II: SOCIAL-EDUCATION - Internships may soon be a must for technical degrees.
GS I: CULTURE - Clean Padmanabhaswamy temple tanks by May 15: SC.
GS II : GS II: BILATERAL INDIA-PAKISTAN - Kishenganga off the menu in Indus talks.
GS III : ECONOMY- REPORTS - Norway is the world's happiest country.
GS II : GS II: BILATERAL INDIA-AFGHANISTAN - New Delhi, Kabul talks soon to boost trade.

Tags:

UPSC Prelims 2017, IAS Exam 2017, Coaching for GS, Online Coaching for UPSC, Online Coaching for IAS Prelim Exam, Virtual, Class for Prelim Exam, Online Test Series for UPSC Prelim, Online Coaching for CSAT, GS CSAT Coaching, Virtual Lectures for UPSC.

Daily Current Affairs March 21st 2017. Find Latest Current Affairs March 21st 2017 only at A A Shah's IAS Institute.

Stay updated with current affairs today for Banking & Competitive exams 2017. Get daily GK, current affairs quiz, questions for government exams.

Latest Current Affairs March 21st 2017 for UPSC Exam Prep, IAS Current Affairs

Incoming search terms:

current affairs 2017, current affairs march 2017, current affairs in india, current affairs today, current affairs and gk, current affairs about sports, current affairs about india, current affairs banking, current affairs daily, current affairs economics, current affairs essay topics, current affairs environment, current affairs for upsc, current affairs for bank exam, current affairs for ssc chsl 2017, current affairs for competitive exams, current affairs for bank exam, j&k current affairs, current affairs magazine, current affairs news, current affairs of india, current affairs on sports, current affairs politics, current affairs related to olympics, current affairs video, current affairs wikipedia, current affairs with answer, current affairs related to political issues

Back to Top