Current Affairs 8th April, 2019

PRELIMS SCORE BOOSTER

1. About 85% of Ujjwala beneficiaries in 4 States still use earthen stoves

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The hidden truth of the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) is that most rural households with LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) connections still use chulhas with firewood or dung cakes, to the detriment of rural health.

In details

  • A new study from the Research Institute for Compassionate Economics shows that 85% of Ujjwala beneficiaries in rural Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh still use solid fuels for cooking, due to financial reasons as well as gender inequalities.

  • The resultant indoor air pollution can lead to infant deaths and harm child development, as well as contribute to heart and lung disease among adults, especially the women, cooking on these chulhas.


Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana

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  • It is a scheme of the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas for providing LPG connections to women from Below Poverty Line (BPL) households.

  • It was launched in May 2016 in Ballia, Uttar Pradesh

Key features

  • Aim: To replace unclean cooking fuels used in the most underprivileged households with clean and more efficient LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas)

  • Families below the poverty line are to be provided with LPG connections with a support of Rs.1,600 per connection.

  • Oil Marketing Companies would provide an option for the new consumer to opt for loan to cover the cost of a cooking stove and first refill.

  • The LPG connections will be issued in the name of the women of the households.

Target

  • Initially the target was installation of 5 crore new LPG connections by 2019

  • Target revised to 8 crore- to be achieved by 2019-20

Beneficiaries

  • BPL households identified through Socio-Economic Caste Census data

  • All SC/STs households beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana(PMAY) (Gramin)

  • Beneficiaries of Antyodaya Anna Yojana (AAY)

  • Forest dwellers

  • Most Backward Classes (MBC)

  • Tea & Ex-Tea Garden Tribes

  • People residing in Islands

  • People residing in river island


2. Women managed and women centric metro station

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Hyderabad Metro Rail’s Ugadi gift to womenfolk of the city is to rename the Madhuranagar metro station between Ameerpet and HiTec City route of Corridor III (Nagole to HiTec City or the ‘Blue Line’) ‘Taruni Madhuranagar’

About the news

  • For the first time in the country, and perhaps in the world, Hyderabad Metro Rail has set up an all-women station catering to the needs of women.

  • Madhuranagar Metro Station of Corridor - III (Blue Line) has been renamed ‘Taruni Madhuranagar’ metro station.  

  • While the station is open for all passengers irrespective of gender, it will be managed by women employees and will soon have shops exclusively catering to the needs of women and children.

3. Platinum Jubilee Commemoration of Battle of Kangla Tongbi

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About the Battle

  • In early April 1944, the Imperial Japanese Army were moving south on the Imphal-Kohima Road in their bid to capture the city of Imphal from the Allied forces.

  • Along the same road, the 221 Advance Ordnance Depot of the British Army were stationed in the area of Kangla Tongbi.

  • Led by Major Boyd, the small group of soldiers were able to halt the advance of the Japanese troops by three days, a time-frame that allowed the removal of almost 4,000 tons of Allied arms and ammunition out of the battle zone.

  • It was considered to be one of the boldest battles British troops were involved in during World War II.






4. Technical Analysis of FAME II Scheme

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NITI Aayog & Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) Release Technical Analysis of FAME II Scheme. Report looks at potential saving in areas of energy, oil and carbon emissions.

Details of the report

  • Effects of FAME II will go beyond the vehicles that are eligible under the FAME II.

  • There is considerable energy and CO2 savings associated with the two, three, and four-wheeled vehicles and buses covered by FAME II over their lifetime, as well as the potential savings associated with greater adoption levels by 2030.

  • The electric buses covered under FAME II will account for 3.8 billion vehicle kilometers travelled (e-vkt) over their lifetime.

  • In order to capture the potential opportunity in 2030, batteries must remain a key focal point as they will continue to be the key cost driver of EVs.

FAME 2 Scheme

  • Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles, or FAME 2 scheme aims to boost electric mobility and increase the number of electric vehicles in commercial fleets.


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  • Target: The outlay of ₹10,000 crore has been made for three years till 2022 for FAME 2 scheme.

  • The government will offer the incentives for electric buses, three-wheelers and four-wheelers to be used for commercial purposes.

  • Plug-in hybrid vehicles and those with a sizeable lithium-ion battery and electric motor will also be included in the scheme and fiscal support offered depending on the size of the battery.


5. Netanyahu pledges to annex West Bank settlements

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has pledged to annex settlements in the occupied West Bank if he wins the elections, a deeply controversial move that could prove to be the death knell for the two-state solution.

Two-state solution

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  • The two-state solution refers to a solution of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict which calls for “two states for two groups of people.”

  • The two-state solution envisages an independent State of Palestine alongside the State of Israel, west of the Jordan River.

  • The boundary between the two states is still subject to dispute and negotiation, with Palestinian and Arab leadership insisting on the “1967 borders”, which is not accepted by Israel.

  • The framework of the solution is set out in UN resolutions on the “Peaceful settlement of the question of Palestine”, going back to 1974.

  • The resolution calls for “two States, Israel and Palestine … side by side within secure and recognized borders” together with “a just resolution of the refugee question in conformity with UN resolution 194“.