Daily GK Update: 25th June 2020

HRD Ministry releases roadmap for NCERT 2020-21 amid coronavirus crisis

  • The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) has initiated a new National Curriculum Framework (NCF) for school education. It will serve as the roadmap for the National Council for Educational Research and Training (NCERT) for 2020-21.
  • A statement on the issue, released by the ministry on Wednesday, also said that NCERT will make the changes in the textbooks in accordance with the new NCF. Subject experts will give an interim report by December 2020.
  • The NCERT roadmap has been framed in view of the decision of setting up of Foundational Literacy and Numeracy Mission under AtmaNirbhar Bharat, and also in view of the focus of Samagra Shiksha towards learning outcome centric approach.
  • The NCERT has been asked to develop the required resources for implementing these in an effective and timely manner, leading to an overall improvement in the learning levels of students.

Source: India Today

Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) launches another funding scheme to help the distressed MSME sector

  • Minister of MSME, Shri Nitin Gadkari today launched the Credit Guarantee Scheme for Sub-ordinate Debt (CGSSD) which is also called “Distressed Assets Fund–Sub-ordinate Debt for MSMEs”.
  • As per the Scheme, the guarantee cover worth Rs. 20,000 crores will be provided to the promoters who can take debt from the banks to further invest in their stressed MSMEs as equity.
  • It was being felt that the biggest challenge for stressed MSMEs was in getting capital either in the form of debt or equity. Therefore, as part of Atmanirbhar Bharat package, on 13th May, 2020, Finance Minister had announced this scheme of sub-ordinate Debt to the promoters of operational but stressed MSMEs. After completion of necessary formalities including approval of CCEA and consultation with Finance Ministry, SIDBI and RBI among others, the scheme was formally launched today by Shri Gadakari from Nagpur.

Source: Ministry of Micro,Small & Medium Enterprises

Cabinet approves declaration of Kushinagar Airport in Uttar Pradesh as an International Airport

  • The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval for declaration of Kushinagar Airport in Uttar Pradesh as an International Airport.
  • Kushinagar Airport is located in the vicinity of several Buddhist Cultural Sites like Sravasti, Kapilvastu, Lumbini (Kushinagar itself is a Buddhist cultural site) and declaration as an “International Airport” will offer improved connectivity, wider choice of competitive costs to the air-travellers. It will result in boosting of domestic/international tourism and economic development of the regions.
  • Kushinagar is located in the north-eastern part of Uttar Pradesh about 50 km east of Gorakhpur and is one of the important Buddhist pilgrimage sites.

Source: Cabinet

World’s first yoga University named after Swami Vivekananda launched outside India

  • The Vivekananda Yoga University (VaYU) was jointly launched on Tuesday by Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan and Chairperson of the Standing Committee on External Affairs P P Chaudhary during a virtual event held at the Consulate General of India in New York.
  • Eminent Indian yoga guru Dr. H R Nagendra, Chancellor of Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana (SVYASA) is the first Chairman of VaYU.
  • Addressing the virtual launch, Muraleedharan said Swami Vivekananda gave the message of universal brotherhood from the US and through the first of its kind yoga university outside India, the message of yoga will be broadcast from America to the world.
  • The event was jointly hosted by the Consulate General and Jaipur Foot USA Chairperson and founding director of VaYU Prem Bhandari.

Source: DD News

Historic reforms initiated in the Space sector

  • Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi today approved far reaching reforms in the Space sector aimed at boosting private sector participation in the entire range of space activities. The decision taken is in line with the long-term vision of the Prime Minister of transforming India and making the country self-reliant and technologically advanced.
  • India is among a handful of countries with advanced capabilities in the space sector. With these reforms, the sector will receive new energy and dynamism, to help the country leapfrog to the next stages of space activities.
  • This will not only result in an accelerated growth of this sector but will enable Indian Industry to be an important player in global space economy. With this, there is an opportunity for large-scale employment in the technology sector and India becoming a Global technology powerhouse.

Source: Prime Minister’s Office

Union Minister Dr Jitendra Singh inaugurates Devika and Puneja Bridges in Udhampur & Doda Districts

  • Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh today inaugurated two important Bridges Devika and Puneja in Udhampur and Doda districts respectively in Jammu and Kashmir through virtual platform.
  • Inaugurating the 10-meter-long Devika Bridge in Udhampur District in the presence of DG, BRO, Lt Gen Harpal Singh, Dr Jitendra Singh said that the 70-year-old demand of the people of the area got fulfilled, which will become a game changer for traffic issues in the region. He said that apart from taking care of traffic congestion and developmental needs of the Udhampur town area, Devika Bridge will also help in smooth passage of Army convoys and vehicles. He said that the bridge at a cost of 75 lakhs was constructed in about one-year time span and the Border Roads Organisation deserve special praise for this as they overcame several hurdles and challenges like lockdown, shortage of labour and other local issues during the pandemic.

Source: Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions


MSDE Ministry, IBM unveil Free Digital Learning Platform to reach job seekers

  • Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship (MSDE) in partnership with IBM has unveiled Free Digital Learning Platform ‘Skills Build Reignite’ to reach more job seekers and provide new resources to business owners in India. Directorate General of Training, DGT, under the aegis of MSDE has also announced a 10-week duration Skills Build Innovation Camp for students, providing hands on project experience, enhanced learning and increased employability.
  • Union Minister of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Dr. Mahendra Nath Pandey has congratulated DGT and IBM India for their collaborative efforts. He said, it marks a significant milestone in supporting Centre’s efforts in accelerating Indian economy’s revival from the adverse effects of COVID-19 with the launch of SkillsBuild Reignite and Innovation Camp. He further said, in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Skill India Mission, the Ministry has been working relentlessly to strengthen the skilling ecosystem and leverage the rise in demand for new-age skills by expanding industry cross-collaboration and creating learning pathways through digital learning platforms.

Source: All India Radio

CCI approves Facebook’s 9.99% stake buy in Jio Platforms

  • The Competition Commission of India (CCI) on Wednesday approved Facebook Inc’s 9.99 per cent stake buy in Reliance Industries’ (RIL) Jio Platforms. Facebook will buy stake worth Rs 43,574 crore in Jio Platforms through a wholly-owned indirect subsidiary Jaadhu Holdings LLC.
  • Jaadhu Holdings was incorporated in March 2020 in Delaware, US and was not engaged in any business in India or anywhere in the world, according to the submissions it had made to the CCI.
  • Facebook’s minority non-controlling stake buy on April 22 was one of the first deals for Jio Platforms. The latter has since then raised Rs 1.15 lakh crore by selling small stakes to about 11 private equity and sovereign funds across the world. The latest to invest in Jio Platforms was Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, which had bought a 2.32 per cent stake for Rs 11,367 crore.

Source: Indian Express

Cabinet approves establishment of Animal Husbandry Infrastructure Development Fund

  • In pursuance of recently announced Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan stimulus package for ensuring growth in several sectors, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has approved setting up of Animal Husbandry Infrastructure Development Fund (AHIDF) worth Rs. 15000 crore.
  • Government has been implementing several schemes for incentivizing the investment made by dairy cooperative sector for development of dairy infrastructure. However, government realizes that even MSMEs and Private companies also need to be promoted and incentivized for their involvement in processing and value addition infrastructure. AHIDF would facilitate much needed incentivisation of investments in establishment of such infrastructure for dairy and meat processing and value addition infrastructure and establishment of animal feed plant in the private sector.
  • The eligible beneficiaries under the Scheme would be Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs), MSMEs, Section 8 Companies, Private Companies and individual entrepreneur with minimum 10% margin money contribution by them. The balance 90% would be the loan component to be made available by scheduled banks.

Source: Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA)

INAE invites nominations for Innovative Student Projects Award 2020

  • Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE), an autonomous institute of the Department of Science & Technology, Govt. of India, has invited nominations for the Innovative Student Projects Award 2020.
  • The nominations are invited for the Innovative Student Projects Award 2020. Projects of students from three categories are eligible for participation — Final Year (4th year) B.E, B.Tech or B.Sc. (Engg) projects completed up to July 31, 2020, for the academic year 2019-2020, M.E. or M.Tech, M.Sc. (Engg) thesis examined from July 1, 2019, up to July 31, 2020, during the academic year 2019-2020 and Ph.D. thesis examined and accepted/recommended for Award from June 1, 2019, up to May 31, 2020.
  • INAE instituted the Innovative Student Projects award in 1998 to identify innovative and creative research projects undertaken by the students at any of the three stages of tertiary engineering education, namely undergraduate, post-graduate and doctoral levels in engineering institutions. The award particularly encourages joint projects among industry, research laboratories, and academic institutions. The endeavour is meant to encourage young talent and accord recognition and incentives to them. Though the response to the award during the last twenty-two years has been quite encouraging, the Academy earnestly wishes to reach out to a wider cross-section of the community and profession.

Source: Ministry of Science & Technology