The Daily Brief – 18th August 2017

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  • Union Cabinet has approved to raising Extra Budgetary Resources of upto Rs. 9,020 crore for Long Term Irrigation Fund(LTIF) for the financial year 2017-18. The funds will be raised by the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) through the issuance of Bonds at 6% per annum as per requirement.
  • A proposal to complete remaining work North Koel Reservoir Project in Bihar, stalled since 1993 has been approved by the Union Cabinet. It also revived the project to address environmental concerns. Under the revived project, storage of water in Mandal dam to be constructed under it  will be will be restricted at lower level than envisaged earlier to reduce the submergence and to protect Betla National Park and Palamau Tiger Reserve. Moreover, a 24 MW power project as part of the original design also has been scrapped.
  • A $24.64 million Grant Agreement from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) of the World Bank for Ecosystem Service Improvement Project has been agreed to by the Union Government. The Project with a duration of 5 years will be entirely financed by the World Bank out of its GEF Trust Fund.
  • According to the census report, released by the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) the population estimation of Asian elephant in India is around 27,312. t was first-ever synchronised all-India Elephant Population census that covered 1.10 lakh square kilometres and spanned four regions of the country.
  • Pakistan based Kashmiri terrorist outfit Hizbul Mujahideen has been listed as a  “Foreign Terrorist Organisation (FTO)” by the United States. The designation slaps a series of US sanctions against the organisation. The list containing major terrorist organisations like Lashkar-e-Toiba(LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammad(JeM) also contains two other anti-India groups, al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (2016) and Indian Mujahideen (2011).
  • According to the 2017 Global Liveability Report compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU)ranking 140 cities, Australian city Melbourne is the most liveable city in the world.
  • Researchers from US-based Rice University have found new tectonic mircoplate off Ecuador’s coast in the eastern Pacific Ocean. It has been named Malpelo plate, after a Colombian island and an oceanic ridge it contains. It is overall 57th tectonic mircoplate to be discovered so far and the first in nearly a decade. Microplates are tectonic plates with an area less than 1 million km square.

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