9-10 August 2017 Current Affairs

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10 Aug, 2017

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1) The nation observed the 75th anniversary of the ‘Quit India Movement’, an important milestone in the Indian freedom struggle, on 9 August 2017. What is the chosen theme for this event as suggested by the Prime Minister? – “Sankalp se Siddhi” (The Attainment through Resolve)

Explanation: Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his ‘Mann ki Baat’ radio programme, had suggested “Sankalp se Siddhi” (which means ‘the attainment through resolve’) as the theme for the momentous occasion of the 75th anniversary of the Quit India Movement.

To mark the special occasion, both houses of Parliament held a special session on 9 August 2017. Both Houses suspended the Question Hour and Zero Hour to make way for the special session’s proceedings.The National Archives of India organized a special exhibition in New Delhi to mark the occasion.

It is worth mentioning that the call for ‘Quit India Movement’ was given at the Bombay session of the All-India Congress Committee by Mahatma Gandhi on 8 August 1942 demanding an end to British Rule of India. The clarion call of the movement was given after failure of the Cripps Mission of 1942. Indian citizens became associated with the movement from 9 August 1942.

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2) On 8 August 2017 India ratified the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol that commits countries to contain the emission of greenhouse gases. With this India became the …….. country to accept the amendment relating to the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol – 80th

Explanation: India’s Representative to the UN Syed Akbaruddin on 8 August 2017 announced that India has deposited its Instrument of Acceptance of the Doha Amendment to the Kyoto Protocol under the UN Convention on Climate Change. India thus became the 80th country to accept the amendment relating to the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, the international emissions reduction treaty.

The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement linked to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which commits its Parties by setting internationally binding emission reduction targets. It was adopted in Kyoto, Japan, in December 1997 and entered into force in February 2005.

The first commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol was from 2008-2012. The Doha Amendment to the Kyoto Protocol was adopted in Qatar in December 2012.

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3) Which three states were chosen by NITI Aayog for transformative change in health and education sectors, as announced on 8 August 2017? – Uttar Pradesh, Assam and Karnataka in Health and Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and Jharkhand in Education

Explanation: NITI Aayog has selected Uttar Pradesh, Assam, and Karnataka to improve healthcare delivery and key outcomes in these States. In Education, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, and Jharkhand have been selected for support to better learning outcomes. The six States have been chosen after a rigorous competitive process based on comprehensive metrics to determine potential for impact and likelihood of success.

This announcement was made on 8 August 2017. The selections were made after presentations by the states in respective sectors. The states highlighted the initiatives undertaken by them thus far, their willingness to accelerate improvement and justified why they should be selected for the institutional support being offered by NITI Aayog.

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4) The Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation on 8 August 2017 released the findings of the survey of 1.4 lakh rural households, undertaken by the Quality Council of India (QCI) between May and June 2017. According to this survey how many households had access to a toilet? – 62.45%

Explanation: The survey, covering 4626 villages across all States and Union territories, claimed that 62.45% of the households had access to a toilet. It also pointed out that 91.29% of the people who had access to a toilet also used it, indicating a change in sanitation behaviour.

Northeastern States of Sikkim, Manipur and Nagaland were top performers with 95% rural households covered by toilets, while Bihar (30%) and Uttar Pradesh (37%) were the worst performers.

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5) Which state has become the first in the country to implement the policy of coal utilisation between power units so as to give preference to fuel-efficient private power plants? – Gujarat

Explanation: Gujarat has become the first state in India to come up with the policy of coal utilization between power units based on fuel-efficiency. During August 2017, the Gujarat Government issued a tender for power developers to receive cheap coal marked for the state in return for selling coal-based power at less than Rs 2.82 a unit.

Through the auction, Gujarat will transfer the coal allocated to power generating stations owned by Gujarat State Electricity Corporation (GSECL) to more fuel-efficient private power plants.

The reverse auction would be held in September 2017 for procuring 1,000 megawatt (Mw) of power. The successful power plant would be selling electricity to the state from 1 October 2017 to 30 June 2018.

The move is in line with the initiatives of the Central Government to ensure fuel availability to stressed power plants. The aim is to reduce the cost of fuel for financially ailing distribution companies and ensure effective distribution of domestic coal.

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