GK & Current Affairs!

CURRENT AFFAIRS - INTERNATIONAL NHAI awards first international project in Myanmar to Punj Lloyd-Varaha | 08-Sep-2017 14:54

On 6th September 2017, the National Highway Authority of India awarded its first international project in Myanmar to a joint venture of Punj Lloyd-Varaha.
About the Myanmar Project:

  1. Project details:

Purpose – This project is for the upgradation of the Yagyi–Kalewa section in Myanmar to two lanes with earthern shoulder in the engineering, procurement, and construction mode.
Project length – 120 km
Estimated cost – Rs.1,177.02 crore
Estimated completion time – 36 months

  1. Punj Lloyd-Varaha’s bid was identified as the most competitive among four qualified bidders. It was at Rs.1,177 croreor 0.0017 per cent lower than the estimated cost.

About NHAI:

  1. National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) is an autonomous agency of the Government of India, responsible for management of a network of over 70,000 km of National Highways in India.
  2. Headquarters: New Delhi
  3. Chairman – Mr.‎Deepak Kumar

About Myanmar:

  1. Capital – Naypyidaw
  2. Currency – Burmese kyat
  3. President – Htin Kyaw
  4. Official language: Burmese
UJALA scheme launched in Melaka, Malaysia | 08-Sep-2017 14:49

Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), under Ministry of Power, Government of India has launched UJALA (Unnat Jyoti by Affordable Lighting for All) Scheme in the State of Melaka, Malaysia on 6th of Sept. 2017.
Key Points:
i.The Scheme was launched by Chief Minister of Melaka Idris Haron.
ii.UJALA’s impact in Malaysia will bring about clean energy, contribute to climate change targets and save the already dwindling energy resources.
iii.Under this scheme, each household in Melaka will get 10 high quality 9-watt LED bulbs at a cost of only RM 10, which is almost half of what in being offered in the market.
iv.Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) plans to distribute about 1 million 9W LED bulbs, which will replace 18W CFLs.
v.The price of each bulb will be way lesser than global average price of the LED bulbs, which still swings between 3-5 USD.
vi.Each bulb that is being provided by EESL under the UJALA scheme in Melaka comes with a 3-year free replacement warranty against any technical defects.
vii.It will benefit the environment and also foster new avenues of economic growth in the region.
viii.This scheme has been launched with an aim to reduce the annual household electricity bills by approximately 10.22 million RM every year.
ix.Melaka will also be able to reduce carbon emissions by around 19,000 tonnes per year.
x.Currently, over 25-crore LED bulbs have been distributed under the UJALA scheme in India, which are resulting in 33,828 mn kWh of energy savings per year.
About Malaysia
Capital: Kuala Lumpur
PM: Najib Razak
Currency: Ringgit

Arun Jaitley visit to Japan 2017 | 08-Sep-2017 14:45

On 4th September 2017, Mr.Arun Jaitley left to Japan for a two day visit. This is his last visit to Japan as a defence minister as Ms.Nirmala Sitharaman has been appointed as the new defence minister of India. The new defence minister should have gone for the visit but due to logistical constraints Mr.Arun Jaitley went for it.


Arun Jaitley’s meeting with Japanese Defence minister:

  1. Mr.Arun Jaitley met Japanese Defence minister Mr.Itsunori Onodera as a part of the India-Japan annual defence ministerial dialogue in Tokyo.
  2.  A range of bilateral and regional issues relating to security and defence were discussed in the meeting.
  3. During the meeting issues relating to the US-2 amphibious aircraft were also figured out.
  4. The two sides also agreed to commence technical discussions for research collaboration in the areas of Unmanned Ground Vehicles and Robotics. 
  5. India plans to buy the US-2 ShinMaywa aircraft from Japan for its navy. Last year, China had reacted angrily to reports that Japan plans to sell weapons to India at cheaper prices, saying that such a move is disgraceful.
  6. The two sides also agreed to ramp up counter-terror cooperation, besides deepening engagement among navies, air forces and ground forces of the two countries.
  7. “The Ministers exchanged views and ideas with the aim to further strengthen defence and security cooperation under the framework of the ‘Japan-lndia Special Strategic and Global Partnership’,” a statement said today.
  8. It said Mr.Arun Jaitley and Mr.Itsunori Onodera deliberated on the current security situation in the Indo-Pacific region and condemned in the strongest terms North Korea’s latest nuclear test and called upon the country to cease such action which adversely impacts peace and stability of the region and beyond.
  9. Reviewing bilateral defence ties, they commended the progress made in discussions to identify specific areas of collaboration in the field of defence equipment and technology cooperation for production of various military platforms.
  10. “They noted the effort made by both countries regarding the cooperation on US-2 amphibious aircraft,” said the statement.
  11. The ministers endorsed the importance of enhancing interaction between governments and defence industries of the two countries to encourage collaboration, including for defence and dual-use technologies.
  12. In the meeting, Mr.Arun Jaitley briefed about India’s policy reforms in the defence manufacturing sectors, saying the country offers huge opportunities for foreign industries to play an active role.
  13. Seeking to further intensify naval cooperation, Mr.Onodera expressed his intention to have state-of-the-art Japanese assets, including P-1 maritime patrol aircraft to participate in next year’s trilateral Malabar naval exercise which also involves the US Navy.
  14. “The two sides will consider inclusion of Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) training to expand cooperation. In addition the ministers agreed to pursue exchanges and training by ASW aviation units such as P-3C,” the statement said. P-3C is an anti-submarine and maritime surveillance aircraft.
  15. The Japanese side proposed to invite Indian Navy personnel to mine-countermeasures training held by it.
  16. At the talks, the two sides also welcomed the constructive engagement between Japan’s Acquisition,Technology and Logistic Agency (ATLA) and India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).

Arun Jaitley’s meeting with Japanese Prime Minister:

  1. Mr.Arun Jaitley met Japanese Prime Minister Mr.Shinzo Abe.
  2. They discussed ways to deepening defence and security co- operation.
  3. In the meeting, Mr.Jaitley conveyed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s greetings to Mr.Shinzo Abe.

About Japan:

  1. Capital – Tokyo
  2. Currency – Japanese Yen
  3. Prime minister: Mr.Shinzo Abe
  4. Defence minister – Mr.Itsunori Onodera
  5. Official language – Japanese