The Daily Brief – 12th January 2018

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The Daily Briefs are a comprehensive update of current affairs for the day. If you’d like to receive updates for current affairs every day, you’ll need to subscribe by entering your email address at the right side of this page. The previous Briefs can be accessed at the archives here.

  1. The Minister for Electronics and IT (MeitY) Ravi Shankar Prasad inaugurated the National Informatics Centre (NIC)’s Command and Control Centre (CCC) and its Centre for Excellence in Artificial Intelligence in New Delhi. The Command and Control Centre will increase the agility of NIC’s nationwide ICT infrastructure. NIC was established in 1976. The Centre of Excellence in Artificial Intelligence aims to provide a platform to provide innovative new solutions and to test and develop solutions for projects undertaken by NIC at central and state level.
  2. The Union Environment Minister Harsh Vardhan launched the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP). The programme aims to tackle the challenge of increasing pollution in the cities and towns. It is a five-year action plan with a tentative target of 20-30% reduction in concentrations of PM10 and PM2.5 by 2024, with 2017 as the base year. The plan covers 102 non-attainment cities, across 23 states and Union territories, which were identified by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).
  3. The government of West Bengal has decided to exit from the Centre’s ambitious Ayushman Bharat- Pradhan Mantri Jan Aarogya Yojana. Prior to the launch of the Ayushman Bharat scheme, West Bengal had well established Swasthyasathi. It was agreed to retain the name of Swasthyasathi, this was even acknowledged in the MoU between the State and the Ministry of Family and Health, Government of India. But the centre has unilaterally changed the name of the scheme to Ayushman Bharat- Pradhan Mantri Jan Aarogya Yojana. West Bengal has joined states of Telangana, Kerala, Odisha, and Delhi which have opted out of the scheme for varied reasons.

    Tata Steel Plant in Ijmuiden
  4. The World Economic Forum has recognised Tata Steel’s plant at IJmuiden in the Netherlands as Manufacturing Lighthouse with state-of-the-art production facilities which successfully adopt and integrate the cutting-edge technologies of the future and drive financial and operational impact.
  5. The Union Cabinet has approved India’s Currency Swap Agreement with Japan. The $75-billion bilateral currency swap arrangement is a milestone in mutual economic cooperation and special strategic and global partnership between two countries. The currency swap facilities make it easier for India to pay for its imports. This aids in addressing the challenge of depreciation.
  6. The India Manufacturing Barometer 2019 Report has been prepared by Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) in association with PwC. As per the report, India would witness faster growth in the next 12 months driven by expanding domestic market, technology and increased spending.
  7. The Agreement for the construction of Renukaji Dam Multi-Purpose Project was signed by six states, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Delhi, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh in the presence of Union Water Resources Minister Nitin Gadkari. The Project is a storage project on the Giri River which is tributary of the Yamuna at Sirmour district of Himachal. The project also involves the generation of 40 MW of power during peak flow to be executed by Himachal Pradesh Power Corporation Ltd (HPPCL).
  8. The Uttar Pradesh Governor Shri Ram Naik inaugurated the Sanskriti Kumbh at Prayagraj organised by the Ministry of Culture, Government of India under the Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat initiative. The Sanskriti Kumbh celebrates the conglomeration of Spiritual Consciousness and Cultural Heritage of India in the main premises of Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj.  It is aimed at showcasing the vibrancy of India. The Kumbh Mela is now part of the UNESCO list of Intangible Cultural heritage for humanity.

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Today’s Quiz

1. When was the National Informatics Centre (NIC) established?





2. National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) is a _____ year plan.





3. How many non-attainment cities will be covered under National Clean Air Programme (NCAP)?





4. Which state has recently decided to exit from the Centre’s ambitious Ayushman Bharat- Pradhan Mantri Jan Aarogya Yojana?





5. What was the health scheme launched by West Bengal?





6. With which country India has signed the Currency Swap Agreement?





7. On which river Renukaji Dam Multi-Purpose Project is being constructed?





8. Where is the Sanskriti Kumbh inaugurated?









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