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  • Current Affairs 6th August 2018

    Updated : 06-Aug-2018
    Current Affairs 6th August 2018

    Current Affairs 6th August 2018 - Important Points

    • 122 research projects under ‘IMPRINT-2’ scheme approved by- Government
    • Mughalsarai Junction has been renamed as Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Junction on - 5th August 2018
    • Lok Sabha passes National Sports University Bill, 2018 on - 3rd August 2018
    • World’s first thermal battery plant inaugurated in - Andhra Pradesh
    • Academia Alliance Programme launched by - Startup India
    • Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill approved by - President

     Current Affairs 6th August 2018 - Details

    122 research projects under ‘IMPRINT-2’ scheme approved by- Government

    The Union Government has approved 122 new research project proposals on 4th August 2018 worth Rs 112 crore to fund under its Impacting Research Innovation and Technology ‘IMPRINT-2’ scheme.

    This proposal was approved at the IMPRINT 2 Apex Committee meeting held in New Delhi.  The initiative is aiming to advance research in healthcare, energy, security and defence domains in the high education institutions.

    Important Highlights

    • Among 2145 proposals, 122 best proposals were selected to fund under IMPRINT-2 where 81 were sponsored by Industry out of the selected 122 new projects.
    • The selected proposals will be including 35 (ICT), 17 (Healthcare Technology), 18 (Advanced Materials),12 (Energy Security), 11 (Security &Defence),  9 (Sustainable Habitat), 5 (Environment & Climate), 7 Water Resource & River Systems, 4 (Manufacturing) and 4 (Nano Technology).
    • The implementation of 142 projects under IMPRINT-1 has got underway. These projects have received support from several ministries, councils and departments in addition to the Ministry of Human Resource Development.
    • The knowledge portal to monitor the progress of these research projects and to disseminate findings will going to be launched in October 2018.

    More about IMPRINT scheme

    • IMPRINT is the first of its kind government-supported initiative to address the major science and engineering challenges that India must  address and champion to enable, empower and embolden the nation towards its inclusive growth and self-reliance.

    The initiative is aiming at:

    - To develop new engineering education policy
    - To Create a road map to pursue engineering challenges

    To provide the overarching vision that guides research into areas that are predominantly socially relevant.

    Mughalsarai Junction has been renamed as Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Junction on - 5th August 2018

    The iconic Mughalsarai Railway Junction of Uttar Pradesh has been renamed as Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Junction Railway station on August 5th, 2018. Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) National President Amit Shah did the inauguration of the renamed station.

    Important Highlights

    • On the same occasion, a goods train with an all-woman crew was flagged off. It will be the first time in the country that an all-woman crew will be running a goods train.  
    • The state government also launched the smart yard project for the Mughalsarai station which is the century-old station on the busy Delhi-Howrah route. 
    •  The bi-weekly Ekatmata Express, a train connecting Lucknow and Deen Dayal Upadhyay Junction, was also launched on the same occasion.

    More about Mughalsarai junction

    • It is one of country’s busiest railway station.
    • It was set up in 1862 when the East India Company linked Howrah to Delhi by rail.
    • The British built the station to transport goods from northern India to port cities in the east.
    • It is also located on the main Howrah-Delhi Grand Chord line.
    • With time, the station has become Asia’s biggest goods train yard and one of the busiest stations of the India with the daily movement of around 250 trains.

    Did you know?
    Mughalsarai is also the birthplace of former prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri.

    Lok Sabha passes National Sports University Bill, 2018 on - 3rd August 2018

    The Lok Sabha passed the National Sports University Bill, 2018 seeking to establish a National Sports University in Manipur on August 3rd, 2018 as part of a vision to enhance country’s standing in sports.

    The Bill was introduced in Lok Sabha by Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports on 23rd July 2018. It has replaced the National Sports University Ordinance, 2018 that was promulgated on May 31st, 2018.

    Bill Provision

    • The National Sports University will be headquartered in Manipur.
    • It may be establishing outlying campuses within or outside India, colleges, or regional centres.
    • The University will be undertaking research on physical education, collaborate internationally and strengthen sports training programs in the field of physical education, among others.
    • The Bill Schedule contains statutes.
    • These statutes specify the composition, establishment, and power of various authorities such as Vice Chancellor, the Chancellor, and Dean of Schools.
    • Any such action will be requiring the approval of the central government.
    • The central government will be reviewing and inspect the functioning of the University. The Executive Council may take action based on the inspection findings.
    • If no action is taken within a reasonable time period, the central government may issue binding directions to the Council.
    • In addition to that the central government may annul any proceeding of the University which don't conform with the Bill.
    • The University will be maintaining a Fund which will be containing contributions by the central government, state governments, or the University Grants Commission; loans, gifts, and donations; income from fees, and amounts received from any other source.
    • Incase any of the student's or candidate's name is removed from the University rolls and has been barred from appearing in the examinations, may appeal to the Executive Council to review the decision again.

    World’s first thermal battery plant inaugurated in - Andhra Pradesh

    The world's first-ever thermal battery plant will be unveiled in Andhra Pradesh by the state’s Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu on August 6th, 2018. Manufactured by the BEST (Bharat Energy Storage Technology Private Limited), the first-of-its-kind batteries will be aiming to boost renewable sources of energy production and reduce the dependence on non-renewable fossil fuel-based energy generation.

    Main objective behind this technology is to help in mitigating carbon emissions towards best suited for grid balancing and stabilisations. It will also be used to store energy for commercial establishments, electric vehicles, telecommunication, and highway charging stations. It can also be effectively used in remote locations like islands and hilly terrains.

    Important Highlights

    • In its first phase, batteries suited for telecommunications, mini or microgrids and electric buses would be manufactured.
    • The batteries are expected to run for up to 800kms in a single charge.
    • Under this project, electric buses, produced in collaboration with Bilva Motors, a global consortium, can deliver an 800-kilometre range with a single charge,  with the help of BEST's thermal cells.
    • The cell can be customised to be charged in either or eight hours, depending on the source.
    • It can also provide output ranging between 5Kwh to 1 Mwh.
    • The thermal plant is expected to start its commercial operations by next year May 2019.

    Academia Alliance Programme launched by - Startup India

    Startup India has launched the Startup Academia Alliance program, which is a unique mentorship opportunity between startups and academic scholars working in similar domains,
    to fulfill the Indian Government’s mission to promote the spirit of entrepreneurship in the nation.

    Key Objective

    It is aiming to reduce the gap between scientific research and its industrial applications in order to increase the efficacy of these technologies and widen their impact.

    The initiative is also aiming to create lasting connections between the stakeholders of the startup ecosystem by creating a bridge between the academia and industry and implement the third pillar on which the Startup India Action Plan is based - Incubation and Industry Academia Partnerships.

    Important Highlights

    • The first phase of Startup Academia Alliance was kick-started in partnership with The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI),Regional Centre for Biotechnology,Environment and Water, Council on Energy and TERI School of Advanced Studies.
    • Renowned scholars from these institutes, from fields including renewable energy, healthcare, biotechnology and life sciences were taken on board in order  to provide mentorship and guidance to the startups working in relevant areas.
    • Program applications were invited on the Startup India Hub, a one-stop destination for startups to apply for the opportunities.
    • A total of 133 applications from relevant startups were received, out of which, 43 were shortlisted by the institutes on the basis of technological relevance and operational areas.
    • Emphasis was placed on finding startups employing innovative solutions to press problems in diverse areas.
    • The guidance and mentorship sessions under the alliance program have started.
    • The startups are expected to benefit greatly from the expertise and insights brought forth  by experienced research scholars working in the related fields.

    Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill approved by - President

    Indian President Ram Nath Kovind has given his assent to the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2018, seeking to prevent economic offenders from  fleeing the country and evading the legal process.

    The bill was passed by the upper house of the Parliament, the Rajya Sabha through a voice vote on 25th July 2018. The Lok Sabha had cleared the bill on July 19th after almost a two-hour long debate.

    The ruling government has been under attack from the opposition failing to bring back defaulters like Nirav Modi, Vijay Mallya and Mehul Choksi.

    More about the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill

    • This bill's main motto is to lay down measures to deter fugitive economic offenders from evading the process of Indian law by remaining outside the jurisdiction of Indian courts.
    • Its implementation is expected to restore law and order, as the fugitive economic offenders will going to be forced to return to India to face trial for their offences.
    • The bill is also expected to help the banks and other financial institutions to achieve higher recovery from financial defaults committed by such fugitive economic offenders and thus improving the financial health of such institutions.

    Did you know?

    • Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced the bill for the first time during his speech in 2017 Budget.
      India has witnessed several instances of economic offenders fleeing the country to avoid facing criminal proceedings such as Vijay Mallya and recently Nirav Modi.
    • Most of the cases involve non-repayment of bank loans worsening the financial health of the banking sector in India. The existing criminal and civil provisions in the law are not entirely adequate to deal with the severity of the problem.

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