Current Affairs Current Affairs April 2018

 The much-awaited bridge 'Ib Setu' built over the Ib river in Sambalpur district was thrown open to the public by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. The 2.5-km-long bridge, which is the State’s second longest bridge, has been built in three years at a cost of Rs. 117.50 crore. The bridge has helped establish direct road connectivity between Sambalpur and Brajarajnagar and the distance has now been reduced by 50 km.
Source- The Hindu

 Commerce and Industry Minister launched the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) GlobalLinker platform for MSME exporters in New Delhi. This move is aimed at assisting the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) engaged in exports. This initiative will help in expanding India's multi-focused export strategy and also aid in connecting art and artisans to the market. FIEO GlobalLinker is setup with a view to make the business growth of SMEs simpler, more profitable and enjoyable. 
Source- Press Information Bureau (PIB)

 Since 2016, fourteen new sites have been designated as Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS), including the first ones in Europe. As with other designated sites, these systems highlight agricultural traditions that promote sustainability, safeguard biodiversity and protect the environment while supporting the social and economic development necessary for stable, decent livelihoods. 
The 14 new sites range from oases to rice terraces, wasabi cultivation to raisin production. The 14 new sites are:  
  • 1. Siwa Oasis, Egypt 2016. 
  • 2. Chinampa Agriculture in the World Natural and Cultural Heritage Zone in Xochimilco, Tláhuac and Milpa Alta, Mexico 2017. 
  • 3. Zhagana Agriculture -Forest-Animal Husbandry Composite System, China 2017. 
  • 4. Huzhou Mulberry-dyke & Fish Pond System, China 2017. 
  • 5. Osaki Kodo's Traditional Water Management System for Sustainable Paddy Agriculture, Japan 2017. 
  • 6. Nishi-Awa Steep Slope Land Agriculture System, Japan 2018. 
  • 7. Traditional Hadong Tea Agrosystem in Hwagae-myeon, Republic of Korea 2017. 
  • 8. The Agricultural System of Valle Salado de Añana, Spain 2017. 
  • 9. Malaga Raisin Production System in La Axarquía, Spain 2017. 
  • 10. The Cascaded Tank-Village System, Sri Lanka 2017. 
  • 11. Rice Terraces in Southern Mountainous and Hilly Areas, China 2018.  
  • 12. Xiajin Yellow River Old Course Ancient Mulberry Grove System, China 2018. 
  • 13. Traditional Wasabi Cultivation in Shizuoka, Japan 2018.
  • 14. Barroso Agro-sylvo-pastoral System, Portugal 2018.

 India has won an election to a crucial non-governmental organisation committee in the United Nations. It topped the election held by the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations in the Asia Pacific States category. India got the highest number of votes at 46, followed by Pakistan 43, Bahrain 40 and China 39. The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations is a standing committee of Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). Its main tasks include consideration of applications for consultative status and requests for reclassification submitted by NGOs.
Source- The United Nations

MOUs/Agreements between India and Sweden
  • Joint Declaration on India-Sweden Innovation Partnership for a Sustainable Future between Ministry of Science and Technology of India and the Ministry of Enterprise and Innovation.
MOUs/Agreements between India and Denmark  
  • 1. MOU on Cooperation in the field of Sustainable and Smart Urban Development between the Ministry for Housing and Urban Affairs of India and the Ministry of Industry, Business and Financial Affairs of Denmark.
  • 2. MOU on Cooperation in the fields of Animal Husbandry and Dairying between Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries, Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare of India and the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration, Ministry of Environment and Food of Denmark.
  • 3. MOU on Food Safety Cooperation between the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India and the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration.
  • 4. MOU on Cooperation in Agricultural Research and Education between the Indian Council of Agricultural Research and the University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Science, Denmark.
MOUs/Agreements between India and Iceland  
  • MOU on the Establishment of the ICCR Chair for Hindi Language between Indian Council for Cultural Relations and the University of Iceland.
Source- Press Information Bureau (PIB)

 Every year, 18th April is celebrated Worldwide as World Heritage Day to create awareness about Heritage among communities. This year the theme is 'Heritage for Generations'. The theme emphasizes on inter-generational transfer of knowledge. In India, World heritage day will be celebrated at National Rail Museum, New Delhi. There are total 36 world heritage sites in India, as designated by UNESCO.
Source- Press Information Bureau (PIB)

 Minister of Communications Manoj Sinha launched here the DARPAN (Digital Advancement of Rural Post Office for a New India)-PLI App, which will help in collection of premium for Postal Life Insurance (PLI) and Rural Postal Life Insurance (RPLI) policies at Branch Post Offices anywhere in India, with online updation of the policies. Further, with the launch of this App, indexing of maturity claims in respect of PLI and RPLI policies can be done at Branch Post Office itself, upon which the insurant will immediately be provided with the request number for further references.
Source- Press Information Bureau (PIB)

 The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has stated that India is expected to grow at 7.4% in 2018 and 7.8% in 2019 and would re-emerge as one of the fastest growing major economies in the period. The IMF explained this is due to the strong private consumption as well as fading transitory effects of the currency exchange initiative and implementation of the national goods and services tax. According to the IMF, India will leave its nearest rival China which will grow at 6.6 in 2018 and 6.4% in 2019.
Source- AIR World Service

 The United Kingdom joined the India-led International Solar Alliance (ISA) ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s four-day visit to Britain. At an event held at the London Stock Exchange as part of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting 2018 (CHOGM), Britain formally announced its membership of the alliance. This alliance aims to raise $1 trillion of private and public finance to provide affordable and sustainable energy for all by 2030.
Source- The Livemint

 Veteran journalist S Nihal Singh passed at the age of 88 following an illness. He was suffering from kidney-related ailments. Nihal Singh had worked with several leading newspapers including The Indian Express, The Statesman and Khaleej Times.
Source- NDTV

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