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Evening News Digest: 25 May 2018 (With PDF)


HRD Ministry launched ‘Samagra Siksha’ scheme

  • The Union Minister for Human Resource Development,Shri Prakash Javadekar launched the Samagra Shiksha’ - an integrated Scheme for school education extending support to States from pre-school to senior secondary levels for the first time.
  • The Scheme is a paradigm shift in the conceptual design of school education by treating ‘school’ holistically as a continuum from pre-school, primary, upper primary, secondary and senior secondary levels.It is under ‘SabkoShikshaAchchiShiksha’ ,
  • It focuses on improving quality of education at all levels by integrating the two T’s – Teachers and Technology.
  • ‘Samagra’ means  a holistic approach to treat education  as a whole and the Scheme is very aptly named as it sees school education holistically without segmenting it into various levels of education. Under this scheme one million schools will get library grant of Rs. 5,000 to Rs. 20,000 to strengthen the libraries to ensure that “Padhega Bharat Badhega Bharat”
  • Sports equipment will be provided under the Samagra Shiksha, at the cost of Rs. 5000 for Primary, Rs. 10,000 for Upper Primary & up to Rs. 25,000 for SSC & HSC schools to inculcate & emphasize relevance of sports to realise the dream of “Khelega India Khilega India”.

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9th Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav begins in Tehri 

  • Ministry of Culture is organising the 9th edition of the Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav under the Ek Bharat Shrestha Bharat, in Tehri, Uttarakhand from 25th May to 27th May, 2018.
  • Tehri Lake Festival where one can explore the water sports, organized by the Uttarakhand Tourism every year, will be subsumed within the Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav.
  • 3 days water sports and cultural event is scheduled from 25th – 27th May 2018 at Tehri Lake, Uttarakhand. Minister of State for Culture (I/C) and Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Dr. Mahesh Sharma in the presence of Chief Minister of Uttarakhand Shri Trivendra Singh Rawat will inaugurate the 9th Rashtriya Sanskriti Mahotsav
  • The paired state for Uttarakhand under the Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat matrix is Karnataka, and while troupes from all over the country will be performing, special emphasis is being given to Karnataka.
  • The North Zone Cultural Centre (NZCC), Patiala has been entrusted with the responsibility as the nodal agency to carry forward the execution of the National Cultural Festival under the banner of the slogan “EK BHARAT SHRESHTHA BHARAT”.

UGC (Online Courses) Regulations, 2018 approved

  • Landmark reform in the field of Higher Education, University Grants Commission has approved UGC (Online Courses) Regulations, 2018 in its meeting held on 24th May, 2018.
  • Higher Educational Institutions can offer Certificate, Diploma and Degree Programmes in full-fledged online mode in only those disciplines in which it has already been offering the same or similar Programmes /Courses at graduation level in regular mode (of classroom teaching) or in Open and Distance Learning mode and from which at least one batch has been graduated and approved by the statutory councils, as applicable.
  • Online Programmes requiring Practical/ Laboratory Courses as a curricular requirement shall not be permitted.
  • The Examinations shall be conducted in proctored mode and in conformity with any norms for such examinations stipulated by the commission.
  • The online learning shall have minimum four quadrants: video lectures, e- content, self-assessment and discussion forum to clarify doubts.
  • The Higher Educational Institutions will be eligible to offer Online Programmes if they have been in existence for at least five years and are accredited by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) with a valid minimum score of 3.26 on a 4-point scale; and should be in the top-100 in overall category in the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) for at least two years in the previous three years.


5th India CLMV(Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam) Business Conclave held at Phnom Penh

  • The Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Government of India along with Ministry of Commerce of Cambodia organized the 5th India-CLMV Business Conclave in Phnom Penh on 21-22 May 2018.
  • The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) is institutional partner of the event.
  • The sessions of conclave focussed on sectors such as SME, manufacturing, agriculture, plantation, fisheries and related industries, healthcare, education.
  • CLMV region is considered as India’s gateway to entire ASEAN and provides access to huge markets of these countries.
  • India is creating a Project Development Fund (PDF) for catalysing Indian economic presence in the CLMV countries viz. Cambodia, Laos Myanmar and Vietnam
  • It will benefit India’s industrial community for business expansion in the CLMV countries

US cancels June 12 Summit with North Korea

  • President Trump has cancelled the upcoming summit between the United States and the North Koreans in a new letter released on 24TH May, 2018.
  • Mr. Trump writes in the letter that he was "very much looking forward to being there with you. Sadly, based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have this long-planned meeting.
  • North Korea hardened its rhetoric toward the U.S. earlier, lashing out after remarks by Vice President Mike Pence and the White House national security adviser, John Bolton, that had linked the country with Libya.
  • In a spate of rapid-fire diplomacy, Trump agreed to meet Kim after the two leaders spent most of 2017 exchanging increasingly hostile and bellicose barbs.
  • Two countries(North and South Korea) competing together at the Winter Olympics. 

Economy & banking

Roll out of e-Way Bill system for intra-State movement of goods in the Maharashtra, Manipur and Union Territories (without legislature)

  • The GST E-way bill is an electronic documentation meant for tracking all the inter-state movement of goods.
  • Who should generate an E-way bill?
  • Registered Persons- Every registered person under GST either a consignor/consignee or a recipient must generate an E-way bill before the movement of goods worth more than Rs 50,000.
  • Unregistered Persons- When there is an unregistered person under GST but the recipient is registered, the latter needs to ensure that all the compliances are met
  • Transporters-Transporters carrying goods by road, air, rail also need to generate e-Way Bill if the supplier has not generated the same.

15th Finance Commission constitutes a High Level Group on Health Sector 

  • Fifteenth Finance Commission constitutes a High Level Group to examine the strengths and weaknesses for enabling balanced expansion of Health Sector.
  • The Fifteenth Finance Commission has constituted a high level group consisting of eminent experts from across the country in Health Sector. Dr. Randeep Guleria, Director, AIIMS, New Delhi will be its Convenor.
  • The role and functions of the High Level Groupon Health Sector will be:
  • To evaluate the existing regulatory framework in the Health sector and examine its strength and weaknesses for enabling a balanced yet faster expansion of the health sector keeping in view India’s demographic profile;
  • To suggest ways and means to optimize the use of existing financial resources and to incentivize the state governments’ effort on fulfillment of well-defined health parameters in India; and
  • To holistically examine best international practices for the health sector and seek to benchmark our frameworks to these practices for optimizing benefits keeping in mind our local issues.
  • The Fifteenth Finance Commission of India (XV-FC) is a finance commission constituted in November 2017. The commission's chairman is N. K. Singh, with its full-time members being Shaktikanta Das and Anoop Singh.
  • The Fifteenth Finance Commission was constituted by the Government of India — after approval from the President of India — through a notification in The Gazette of India.

Person in News

Sushant Singh Rajput to promote two major initiatives of NITI Aayog

  • NITI Aayog and Sushant Singh Rajput have decided to collaborate towards promoting two major initiatives of NITI Aayog, promotion of BHIM and the Women Entrepreneurship Platform.
  • As part of its larger mandate to promote digital payments across the country, the NITI Aayog has been successfully driving the digital payments campaign in India, wherein it collaborates with youth leaders and public figures to promote the cashless payment systems across the country.
  • NITI Aayog continues to bring disruption within the industrial space with the establishment of the Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP), which was launched earlier this year with a mission to establish a vibrant, enabling ecosystem for women entrepreneurs across India.


CSIR bags the Clarivate Analytics India Innovation Award 2018

  • Council of Scientific & Industrial Research has been awarded the Clarivate Analytics India Innovation Award 2018 in the Government Research Organizations Category.
  • CSIR is a pioneer of India’s intellectual property movement and a leader in terms of sheer volume of patents published during the analysis period.
  • While CSIR’s patent portfolio touches a wide spectrum of areas in science and technology, some of the top filing areas include: polymers and applications in medicine, materials, electrical industry, pharmaceutical research, fermentation, enzymes, catalysis and applications, chemical & biological treatment of water, etc.
  • With over 2800 citations received by their patents, CSIR scored well on patent citation impact in the government research organization category indicating the relevance and impact of CSIR’s innovations.

 Nari Shakti Puraskar 2017 presented to the INSV Tarini Team

  • Minister for Women and Child Development, Smt. Maneka Sanjay Gandhi presented the prestigious Nari Shakti Puraskar2017 to the members of the INSV Tarini team in New Delhi.
  • The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, had conferred the Nari Shakti Puraskars on International Women’s Day (08thMarch 2018) in Rashtrapati Bhavan. As the INSV Tarini team was sailing then, the award could not be presented to the team.
  • The crew of the Indian Navy Sailing Vessel 'Tarini' is a part of the Indian Navy’s unique project 'Navika SagarParikrama', an all-women team circumnavigating the globe,promoting ocean sailing activities in the Navy and depicting Government of India's commitment towards women empowerment.
  • The Six-member all-women team, led by Lieutenant Commander Vartika Joshi circumnavigated and managed the whole operation in this first ever global journey.
  • The voyage which lasted for 254 days, with 199 days at sea covered 21600 nautical miles, had 5 port calls in Fremantle, Australia; Lyttelton, New Zealand; Port Stanley, Falklands; Cape Town, South Africa and finally at Mauritius before returning home to Goa.

Nari Shakti Puraskar (formally Stree Shakti Puraskar) (Women Power Award)

  • It is a series of India's national honours conferred on individual women for their exceptional achievement.
  • The award is given in six categories, by the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Government of Ind
  • It recognises the spirit of courage of a woman in difficult circumstances, who has established this spirit of courage in her personal or professional life.
  • The award also recognises the pioneering contribution of an individual in empowering women and raising women's issues.
  • Instituted in 1991, the award is conferred by the President on the occasion of International Women's Day, 8 March every year at New Delhi.

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SURYA KIRAN-XIII: India-Nepal Joint Battalion Level Exercise

  • Joint Military Exercise SURYA KIRAN-XIII between India and Nepal will be conducted at Pithoragarh from 30 May to 12 June 2018.
  • The exercise will comprise of nearly 300 soldiers from both Indian and Nepal Army who would be sharing their experiences gained during conduct of various counter insurgency and counter terrorism operations in the past.
  • Exercise SURYA KIRAN is a biannual event which is conducted alternatively in Nepal and India. , Exercise SURYA KIRAN with Nepal is the largest in terms of troop participation. 
  • The aim of this exercise is to conduct battalion level joint training with emphasis on counter terrorism operations in mountainous terrain.
  • During the exercise, aspects of disaster management and joint effort towards relief work have also been included.

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