14 September 2017 Current Affairs

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14 Sep, 2017

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1) The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on 12 September 2017 gave its approval for establishment of a new fund to boost the dairy sector for 2017-18 to 2028-29. What is the name given to this fund? – Dairy Processing and Infrastructure Development Fund (DPIDF)

Explanation: Dairy Processing and Infrastructure Development Fund (DPIDF) is the name of a new fund that will be established with an outlay of Rs. 10,881 crore for 2017-18 to 2028-29 to boost the dairy sector. The establishment of the fund was approved by the CCEA on 12 September 2017.

This fund will be managed by the National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) and the National Dairy Development Cooperation (NCDC) will be used to provide loan for building an efficient milk procurement system and other processing infrastructure.

Under the DPIDF, loan will be provided at an interest rate of 6.5% per annum with a repayment period of 10 years with initial two years of moratorium. The state government will be a guarantor of loan repayment. If the end user is not able to contribute its share for the project sanctioned, the state will contribute the same.

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2) The Union Government during September 2017 formed a 5-member ministerial committee to oversee and help GSTN, the company that processes goods and service tax (GST) returns. Who is heading this committee? – Sushil Kumar Modi

Explanation: A five-member ministerial committee, led by Bihar deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi, was constituted by Union Government during September 2017 to oversee and help GSTN and to resolve the IT challenges affecting tax payer compliance under the goods and service tax (GST).

The committee has been set up as decided by the GST Council at its meeting on 9 September 2017. It was constituted after several state members in the Council reported that businesses were facing difficulties in filing returns due to glitches in the IT system.

Other members on the panel are Chhattisgarh minister for commercial taxes Amar Agarwal, Karnataka agriculture minister Krishna Byregowda, Kerala finance minister Thomas Isaac and Telangana finance minister Etela Rajendar.

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3) India’s first-ever virology laboratory of Homoeopathy was inaugurated at which place on 12 September 2017? – Kolkata

Explanation: The Union Minister of State for AYUSH Shripad Yesso Naik inaugurated India’s first state-of-the-art virology laboratory of Homoeopathy in Kolkata on 12 September 2017. The lab has been established at Kolkata’s Dr. Anjali Chatterjee Regional Research Institute for Homoeopathy (RRIH).

Established at a cost of Rs. 8 crore, it is the only one in India for conducting basic and fundamental research in homoeopathy for viral diseases such as influenza, Japanese encephalitis, dengue, chikunguniya and swine flu. It is recognized by the Calcutta University to undertake research work of the PhD students in the field of homoeopathy.

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4) Who was named the new President of Singapore on 13 September 2017 and thus became the first-ever woman to be nominated to this largely ceremonial post? – Halimah Yacob

Explanation: 63-year old Halimah Yacob, a former speaker of parliament from the Muslim Malay minority, was nominated as the next President of Singapore on 13 September 2017. Her election to the post was a ‘walkover’ that saw no vote as no other contenders ran for the position. She will replace the incumbent Tony Han, whose 6-year tenure ended on 31 August 2017 and acting President J.Y. Pillay took over from him.

While her nomination to the post is a milestone in the history of the island nation as she will be the first woman to occupy the post, the election has also drawn public criticism due to what was seen as a lack of democratic process.

The other two contenders, Salleh Marican and Farid Khan, were both denied eligibility, having fallen short of a rigid constitutional rule.

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5) What is the name of the priest from Kerala who was freed during September 2017 after being in captivity of his kidnappers in Yemen for more than a year? – Father Tom Uzhunnalil

Explanation: Father Tom Uzhunnalil, a catholic priest from Kottayam in Kerala, was abducted in March 2016 when four gunmen posing as relatives of one of the residents of a Missionaries of Charity home in Yemeni capital Aden attacked it. The gunmen killed four Indian nuns, two Yemeni female staff members, eight elderly residents and a guard.

Uzhunnalil remained in captivity for more than a year. His kidnappers released two videos of him showing him pleading for his life, leading to speculation they were mercenaries looking for a ransom.

The news of his release was announced by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on 12 September 2017.

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