- Rajasthan to be declared open defecation free by the end of March
- The state is all set to be declared open defecation free(ODF) by the end this month, claimed by Government of Rajasthan. He said that 188 out of 191 local bodies have been declared ODF.
- On solid waste management, 97% of the target has been achieved and systems are in place in most local bodies to convert waste into fertilizers.
- Under the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT), Rs 3,234 crore has been sanctioned for 29 cities and towns.
- Under the Smart City mission, projects worth Rs 7,075 crore has be implemented in the four cities of Jaipur, Ajmer, Kota and Udaipur. From the state and central contribution of Rs 929 crore, only Rs 130 crore has been spent.
- In the Smart City mission, Udaipur has been ranked third in the country, while Jaipur came 12, Ajmer 15 and Kota 26. In the National Urban Livelihood Mission, Rajasthan stood in the fifth position. So far, 91,000 street vendors have been surveyed and 38,000 of them have been issued cards.
- The Annapurna scheme has benefited 2.5 crore people and 6.4 lakh houses have been constructed under the Mukhya Mantri Jan Awas scheme with a loan of Rs 2,000 crore from HUDCO. Under the energy saving scheme, 8.5 lakh bulbs were distributed.
- President of India inaugurates world Hindi secretariat in Mauritius
- The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, inaugurated the World Hindi Secretariat building on March 13, 2018 on the third day of his visit to Mauritius.
- He also launched the World Hindi Secretariat’s logo and a large ENT hospital being built with Indian assistance.
- The President noted that the 11th World Hindi Conference is going to be held in Mauritius in August 2018.
- Apart from India, Mauritius is the only country where this conference is being hosted for a third time
- Bidya Devi Bhandari relected as Nepal President
- Nepal’s first woman president Bidya Devi Bhandari has been relected for a second term in office.
- Incumbent President Bhandari defeated Nepali Congress leader Kumari Laxmi Rai with an overwhelming majority in the presidential election.
- She became Nepal’s first woman president in 2015.
- Sebastian Pinera sworn in as Chile’s president
- Businessman-turned politician Sebastian Pinera was sworn in as Chile’s president, beginning what will be his second term in office after a four-year absence.
- Pinera, 68, was re-elected in last November elections, promising to lower taxes and boost investment, and will serve until 2022.
- According to Forbes magazine, Pinera is the fourth wealthiest man in Chile.
· Saudi Arabia Cabinet Approves Nuclear Power Program National Policy
- Saudi Arabia‘s Cabinet approved the national policy of its atomic energy programme, as the kingdom prepares to award contracts for its first nuclear power plants.
- The policy insists on limiting nuclear activities to peaceful purposes and calls for enhanced safety measures as well as the use of best practices for radioactive waste management.
- Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, is seeking nuclear power to diversify its energy supply mix in order to free up oil to boost exports.
· Prime Minister Narendra Modi Launches Campaign to Eradicate TB By 2025
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a campaign to eradicatetuberculosis (TB) from India by 2025, five years ahead of the globally-set deadline.
- After inaugurating the Delhi End-TB Summit Modi launched the TB-free India Campaign to take the activities under the National Strategic Plan for TB Elimination forward in a mission mode for ending the epidemic by 2025.
- A target has been set to end TB globally by 2030. Mr. Modi stated that India has targeted to eliminate Tuberculosis by 2025.
- Tata Motors and IOC commence trials of India’s first hydrogen bus
- Tata Motors and Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) have begun the country’s first demonstration trials for a hydrogen fuel cell bus.
- The demonstration event was held in the presence of Dr R Chidambaram, principal scientific adviser to the government of India and the chairman and board members of Indian Oil.
- The project is being executed under partial financial support from the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR) and Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE).
- RBI discontinues Letter of Undertaking, Letter of Comfort
- In view of the alleged Rs 12,700-crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam, done through fraudulent issuance of Letter of Understanding (LoUs) by connivance of the bank’s staff, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has discontinued issuance of LoUs by banks for trade credits for imports into India.
- The RBI notification further said that Letters of Credit and Bank Guarantees for trade credits for imports into India may continue to be issued subject to compliance with the provisions.
· Karnataka’s Belgaum Is Now Home to India’s Tallest Flag
- India’s tallest national flag was unfurled in Belagavi (also known as Belgaum) in Karnataka.
- The event was attended by leaders, schoolchildren, and leaders of Hindu, Muslim, Christian and Sikh institutions at the Kote Kere front.
- Where size is concerned, this flag in Belgaum beats the one at the India-Pakistan border at Attari in Punjab.
- Belagavi District Minister Ramesh Jarkiholi unfurled the 9,600 sq ft wide flag on a 110-meter-tall flagpole.
· Book Signed By Tagore Auctioned For USD 700
- A signed hardcover copy of Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore’s ‘The King of the Dark Chamber’- the English translation of his famous Bengali play ‘Raja’– has been sold for USD 700 at an auction in the US.
- Signed on a prefatory page in fountain pen by Tagore, the Bolpur edition of the book was published by The Macmillan Company in 1916.
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