Current Affairs- 17th September
Science and Technology
Dassault Systèmes, NITI Aayog partner to boost innovations
- NITI Aayog and France’s software maker Dassault Systèmes have tied up to help innovators and entrepreneurs under Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), a flagship programme of the Indian government, said an official statement from the federal policy thinktank.
- As per the deal signed, Dassault Systèmes will collaborate with various current and future programmes of AIM.
- AIM develops programmes and policies for fostering innovation in different sectors of the economy, provides tie-up opportunities for different stakeholders and creates an ecosystem to oversee innovation and entrepreneurship in the country.
FM Sitharaman chairs 45th Meeting of GST council
- Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday said reduced GST rates on COVID medicines have been extended till 31st December from 30th September. Briefing media after 45th Meeting of the Goods and Services Tax, GST Council in Lucknow, Ms Sitharaman said, Zolgensma and Viltepso are two very expensive Life saving drugs which cost around 16 crore rupees. She said the council has decided to grant exemption from GST for these two drugs. Some drugs suggest by Ministry of Health have also been exempted.
- The Council also reduced GST from 12 to 5 percent on cancer related drugs and Seven other medicines. GST was also reduced on bio diesel from 12 to 5 percent.
Former SC judge Indu Malhotra appointed DDCA Ombudsman
- Former Supreme Court judge and one of India’s foremost legal luminaries, Justice (Retired) Indu Malhotra will be the new Ombudsman cum Ethics Officer of Delhi and Districts Cricket Association (DDCA).
- The DDCA’s general body, headed by its president Rohan Jaitley, decided on 65-year-old Justice (Retd) Malhotra’s appointment.
- “A number of decisions were taken at the general body meeting on the day and Justice (Retd) Indu Malhotra’s appointment for a period of one year was made. She will be assuming charge soon,” DDCA director Dinesh Sharma told PTI.
Defence Ministry constitutes High-Level Expert Committee for a comprehensive review of NCC
- Ministry of Defence has constituted a High-Level Expert Committee for a comprehensive review of National Cadet Corps (NCC). The committee’s effort will be to make NCC more relevant in changed times. The Terms of Reference of the Committee broadly provide for suggesting measures which can empower NCC cadets to contribute more effectively towards nation building and national developmental efforts in various sectors.
- The committee will propose measures for gainful engagement of its Alumni for betterment of the organisation as a whole.
PM Modi addresses plenary session of SCO meeting at Dushanbe
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said the root cause of problems facing Shanghai Cooperation Organization region is increasing radicalisation.
- He said, recent developments in Afghanistan have made challenges posed by radicalisation more clear. Addressing the Plenary Session of the 21st Meeting of SCO Council of Heads of State through video conferencing, Mr Modi said, the biggest challenges in the region are related to peace, security and trust deficit.
- He said, fight against radicalisation is not only needed for regional security and trust but also to ensure bright future of the youth.
US, UK face international criticism over new security pact signed with Australia
- The United States and United Kingdom are facing growing international criticism over a new security pact signed with Australia.
- According to BBC, the deal – seen as an effort to counter China – will see the US and UK give Australia the technology to build nuclear-powered submarines. But the move angered France, which said it had been stabbed in the back, while China accused the three powers of having a Cold War mentality.
- Mr. Johnson told MPs that the agreement was not intended to be adversarial to China. Mr Johnson said that the United Kingdom remains determined to defend international law.
MoS Power Krishan Pal Gurjar attends 15th East Asia Summit Energy Ministers meet
- The 15th East Asia Summit Energy Ministers Meeting was held on Thursday virtually. Minister of State for Power Krishan Pal Gurjar attended the meeting along with other senior officials of the Ministry from the Indian side.
- The theme of the meeting “We Care, We Prepare, We Prosper”, aimed at coordinating efforts of ASEAN countries in pursuing the goal of energy security and energy transition that will benefit the people of the region.
- India confirmed that ASEAN is a region of great importance for us. Engagement with ASEAN has been and will remain a critical element of India’s ‘Act East’ policy and strategy, Acting East is now a central element in India’s Indo-Pacific vision.
G-33 Virtual Informal Ministerial Meeting held to discuss Agricultural Priority Issues
- The G-33 Virtual Informal Ministerial Meeting organized by Indonesia was held on Thursday to discuss the Agricultural Priority Issues of G33 and the Way Forward for the Twelfth Ministerial Conference scheduled to be held from 30th November to 3rd December this year.
- The Informal Ministerial Meeting was chaired by Indonesian Minister of Trade, Muhammad Lutfi.
- India’s official delegation for the meeting was headed by Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal.
National Open Athletics: Harmilan Kaur sets national record in 1500m
- Punjab’s Harmilan Kaur Bains stole the thunder from the sprinters by breaking Sunita Rani’s long-standing national record in the 1,500 metres on the second day of the 60th National Open Athletics Championships in the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Hanamkonda in Telangana yesterday.
- Delhi’s K. M. Chanda gamely shadowed Harmilan until the Punjab runner sped away at the bell to win by a sizable margin. Harmilan, undefeated in eight national-level 1,500 metres races since January 2020.
Days and Dates
ITEC Day celebrated in Bangladesh
- The High Commission of India celebrated the 57th Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) day in Dhaka on Thursday.
- Deputy Minister for Education of Bangladesh Mohibul Hasan Chowdhoury attended the event as the Chief Guest of the event hosted by the High Commissioner of India to Bangladesh Vikram Doraiswami. Around 100 ITEC alumni from all walks of life along with the distinguished guests took part in the event which was organised on a limited scale considering the ongoing pandemic situation in the country, said a press release of the High Commission of India.
Other Important Affairs
- In a major boost to connectivity between India and Bangladesh a new Passenger Terminal (I) Building was inaugurated on Friday at the Integrated Check Post (ICP), Petrapole. The inauguration was done jointly by the Minister of State for Home Affairs Nitya Nand Rai and Nitish Pramanik, Minister of State for Home Affairs.
- Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya has said that the country has crossed the historical figure of two crore vaccines in a day, setting a new record.
- Mr. Dharmendra Pradhan virtually presented Kaushalacharya Awards 2021 to 41 skill trainers for their exemplary contribution to the skill ecosystem. These 41 trainers are from several initiatives and training programmes of Skill India- Directorate General of Training (DGT), Apprenticeship, Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY), Jan Shikshan Sansthan (JSS) and Entrepreneurship.
- World Patient Safety Day is observed on September 17 to create a global awareness for patient safety and urge people to show their commitment to making healthcare safer. The theme for 2021 WPSD is ‘Safe maternal and newborn care’.