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(1).Union Cabinet clears Ordinance to tackle Bad Loans
i. The Union Cabinet has cleared an ordinance that seeks to amend the Banking Regulation Act to give more powers to Reserve Bank of India to deal with non-performing assets (NPAs) in the banking sector.
ii. The ordinance has been sent to the President for assent.
iii. It will empower RBI to act against loan defaulters and defaulting companies under the bankruptcy code.
iv. It will enable RBI to set up multiple oversight committees to deal with NPAs.
v. It will be made to make sure that bankers opting for resolution of bad debts are ring-fenced from any regulatory backlash.
vi. The ordinance would empower RBI to speed up the NPA resolution process.
(2). Union Cabinet Clears New National Steel Policy
i. The Union Cabinet has given its approval for National Steel Policy (NSP) 2017 to give impetus to the steel sector.
ii. The policy aims to enhance domestic steel consumption and transform Indian steel industry into a technologically advanced and globally competitive steel industry.
iii. The new policy favours the domestic manufacturers.
(3). Swachh Survekshan 2017: Indore is the cleanest city
i. The ‘Swachh Survekshan 2017’ survey results were recently announced by Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu. The total 434 cities of India were surveyed. Indore in Madhya Pradesh is India’s cleanest city while Gonda in Uttar Pradesh is the dirtiest.
ii. Gujarat has the maximum of 12 cities among the top 50 clean cities, closely followed by Madhya Pradesh with 11 and Andhra Pradesh with eight. Uttar Pradesh accounted for half of the bottom 50 cities in the cleanliness ranking.
Top 10 clean cities of India in 2017 are:
1. Indore (MP)
2. Bhopal (MP)
3. Visakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh)
4. Surat (Gujarat)
5. Mysuru (Karnataka)
6. Tiruchirapally (Tamil Nadu)
7. New Delhi Municipal Council (New Delhi)
8. Navi Mumbai (Mumbai)
9. Tirupati (Andhra Pradesh)
10. Vadodara (Gujarat).
Top 5 Dirtiest cities of India (with Rank) in 2017 are:
1. Gonda (UP)- 434,
2. Bhusawal (Maharashtra)- 433,
3. Bagaha (Bihar)- 432,
4. Hardoi (UP)- 431,
5. Katihar (Bihar)- 430.
(4). Adani signs steel supply deal with Australian group Arrium
i. Energy giant Adani signed a 74 million dollar landmark deal with Australian steel group Arrium to buy steel for a 400-km rail line for its controversial Carmichael coal mine project.
ii. Under the landmark deal, Arrium’s division OneSteel Manufacturing Pty Ltd will supply 54,000 tonnes of steel to build the rail line linking Adani’s proposed coal mine in central Queensland with the Abbot Point port.
(5). Cabinet approved Vijayawada Airport as International Airport
i. The Union Cabinet has granted international airport status for the Vijayawada Airport.
ii. The approval was given as per provisions of Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014.
iii. The decision was taken as the airport is witnessing significant growth in passenger traffic and also to cater to the demands made by airlines as well as the Andhra Pradesh government.
iv. The airport is currently undergoing infrastructural upgradations and improvement in facilities for international operations.
v. The upgradation works are being carried out by the Airports Authority of India.
vi. The international status accorded to the airport will help in boosting the domestic and international tourism besides promoting socio-economic development.
vii. It will also improve connectivity to the capital of Andhra Pradesh.
viii. Vijayawada is metropolitan city situated on the banks of the River Krishna in Andhra Pradesh.
ix. The city forms a part of Andhra Pradesh Capital Region and the hosts the headquarters of Andhra Pradesh Capital Region Development Authority.
x. The city is one of the major trading and business centres of the state and hence called as “The Business Capital of Andhra Pradesh“.
(6). China to Launch its Own Encyclopaedia as a Rival to Wikipedia
i. China plans to launch its own online encyclopaedia next year rivalling Wikipedia and Britain’s Encyclopaedia Britannica.
ii. The main objective of this project is to guide public thought.
iii. China fears that its citizens who use Wikipedia are being corrupted by foreign influences.
iv. The project will be executed under the guidance of the state-owned China Publishing Group.
v. The project would be developed in such a way that it serves as a symbol of China’s cultural and technological development and promotes its soft power and international influence.
(7). India expected to achieve 7.1% growth this year: UN report
i. As per the UN report, India is expected to achieve 7.1 percent growth this year.
ii. The UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) launched its annual flagship report ‘The Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific 2017’.
iii. The report said India’s growth would edge up to 7.5 percent for 2018.
(8). Mallikarjun Kharge appointed as new chairman of PAC
i. Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge is the new chairman of the 21-member Public Accounts Committee of Parliament.
ii. He replaces Congress leader K V Thomas whose term ended on April 30.
iii. The new committee has only two new faces while the remaining members have been renominated.
iv. Subhash Chandra Baheria and Ram Shankar, both of the BJP, have replaced their party members Richard Hay and Janardan Singh Sigriwal.
v. Other MPs from the Lok Sabha who are in the panel are Sudip Bandyopadhyay, Prem Singh Chandumajra, Nishikant Dubey, Gajanan Chandrakant Kirtikar, Bhartruhari Mahtab, Riti Pathak, Neiphiu Rio, Abhishek Singh, Kirit Somaiya, Anurag Singh Thakur, Shivkumar C Udasi and P Venugopal.
(9). Braj Bihari Kumar appointed as the chairman of ICSSR
i. Braj Bihari Kumar, editor of quarterly journals Dialogue and Chintan Srijan, has been appointed as the chairman of the Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR).
ii. He will be succeeding noted economist S K Thorat.
iii. The HRD Ministry took the decision finalising his name for the top post for a period of three years.
(10). India to get world’s highest railway bridge across Chenab river in J&K
i. Around two years from now, the Chenab river in Jammu and Kashmir will be spanned by the world’s highest railway bridge that is expected to be 35 metres taller than Paris’ Eiffel Tower.
ii. The massive arch-shaped structure, being constructed at a cost of around Rs. 1,100 crores, will rise 359 m above the river bed.
iii. The 1.315-km- long “engineering marvel” will connect Bakkal (Katra) and Kauri (Srinagar). The bridge forms a crucial link in the 111-km stretch between Katra and Banihal, which is part of the Udhampur-Srinagar-Baramulla rail link project.