The Daily Brief – 13th July 2018


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  1. According to updated World Bank figures on GDP of countries for 2017, India has become world’s sixth-biggest economy surpassing France to seventh place. India’s gross domestic product (GDP) amounted to $2.597 trillion at the end of 2017, as against $2.582 trillion for France. At end of 2017, United States was world’s largest economy with size of US $19.39 trillion, followed by China (US $12.23 trillion) at the second place. Japan and Germany are at third and fourth places respectively while Britain is at fifth position. According to International Monetary Fund (IMF), India is projected to grow at 7.4% in 2018 and 7.8% in 2019, mainly boosted by household spending and tax reform.
  2. According to the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications (ISAAA) latest “Global Status of Commercialized Biotech/ GM Crops in 2017” report, India with 11.4 million hectares (mh) has world’s fifth largest area cultivated under genetically modified (GM) crops in 2017.  India’s entire GM crop area is under single crop BT Cotton incorporating genes from Bacillus thuringiensis or Bt soil bacterium coding for resistance against heliothis bollworm insect pests. United States has highest area under transgenic crops, at 75 mh. In 2017, farmers across the world have planted 189.8 mh under transgenic crops.
  3. The Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has launched a “Technology Challenge: Identifying solutions for cleaning of Sewerage Systems and Septic Tanks” to promote suitable techniques for cleaning sewers and septic tanks. The challenge will be a part of the Mahatma Gandhi International Sanitation Convention that will be held on October 2, 2018 and will remain open up to 5: 30 pm on August 14, 2018. Proposals have been invited by the Housing and Urban Affairs Ministry. The main objective of the challenge is to eliminate human intervention in the cleaning of sewers and septic tanks.
  4. Union Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation has launched fortnightly video contest “Jal Bachao, Video Banao, Puruskar Pao”. The contest aims to engage with people of the country on the important issues of water conservation and water management. For running this contest, Ministry has joined hands with MyGov portal ( The contest will last till 4th November 2018 and three winners will be chosen for every fortnight.

    Indian Men’s Hockey Team
  5. The Mission Olympic Cell (MOC) of Union Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs has included entire Men’s Hockey team of India under the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS). This is first instance that entire team has been made beneficiary of the scheme as earlier only individual athletes from different sports were included as beneficiaries of the scheme. TOPS was launched by Ministry of Sports within the ambit of National Sports Development Fund (NSDF). It aims at identifying and supporting potential medal prospects for upcoming Olympic Games.
  6. India was formally inducted as 69th shareholder of European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). This comes after EBRD’s board of governors, which represents all existing shareholders voted unanimously in favour of India’s application in March 2018. India being shareholder will only take shareholding in EBRD and will not be recipient of EBRD financing. EBRD is a multilateral developmental investment bank established in 1991.
  7. The Union Home Ministry has instituted five Police Medals to promote professionalism and excellence in service and give recognition to the security personnel doing good work in stressful environment and in difficult areas. The five non-cash awards will supplement and strengthen the existing award schemes in the State Police Forces, Central Police Organisations and the Armed Forces. These five awards are Special Operation Medal, Police Antarik Suraksha Seva Padak, Asadharan Aasuchana Kushalata Padak, Utkrisht and Ati Utkrisht Seva Medal and Union Home Minister’s Medal for Excellence in Investigation.

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Today’s Quiz

1. What is the rank achieved by India according to the World Bank figures on GDP of countries for 2017?

2. Which is the world's largest economy according to the World Bank figures on GDP of countries for 2017?

3. What is the total area cultivated under transgenic crops across the world in 2017?

4. What is the aim of "Jal Bachao, Video Banao, Puruskar Pao"?

5. When was of European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) established?

6. Which sports team have been included in Mission Olympic Cell (MOC)?

7. How many non-cash awards have been instituted to strengthen the existing award schemes in the State Police Forces, Central Police Organisations and the Armed Forces?

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