Madhya Pradesh bans Sand Excavation in Narmada River
The State Government of Madhya Pradesh has put an indefinite ban on the sand excavation in the Narmada River. This announcement has been made by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan in Bhopal. The government has also set up a committee to suggest the scientific ways of mining the rivers. This committee will submit the report to state government after exploring ways for sand excavation without harming rivers. The government will also promote manufactured sand (made by mixing stones).
Free Wi-Fi facility inaugurated at 28 Railway Stations
On May 21, Minister of Railways Suresh Prabhu inaugurated free Wi-Fi facility at 28 Railway Stations of Konkan Railway from Kudal Railway Station in Maharashtra. Indian Railways has tied by with SYSCON/JOISTER for providing 2 Mbps peer-to-peer 24 hrs Free Wi-Fi bandwidth at 28 railway stations of Konkan Railway. In line with Government’s Digital India initiative, SYSCON/JOISTER are providing the JOISPOT brand WiFi in Pune and Mumbai educational institutions in Maharashtra state. The company has now undertaken as a part of their CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) activity of providing free Wi-Fi to rural area on the Konkan Route. The 28 stations include Kolad; Mangaon; Veer; Karanjadi; Vinhere; Diwankhavati; Khed; Anjani; Chiplun; Kamthe; Sawarda; Aravali Road;Sangameshwar; Ukshi; Bhoke; Ratnagiri; Nivasar; Adavali; Vilavade; Rajapur Road; Vaibhavwadi Road; Nandgaon Road; Kankavali; Sindhudurg; Kudal; Zarap; Sawantwadi Road and Madure. The free Wi-Fi facility would help the travelers, commuters and tourists access essential information while waiting for trains on railway stations.
NASA Names New Species After Abdul Kalam
NASA has named a new bacteria discovered on the filters of the International Space Station, ISS, as Solibacillus kalamii to honour the late president Dr A P J Abdul Kalam. The genus is Solibacillus and the species name is kalamii. Researchers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory has found that the bacteria remained on board the International Space Station for 40 months. The new organism is found only on the ISS and has not been found anywhere on the earth. In 1963, Dr. Kalam had his early training at NASA before setting up India’s first rocket launching facility at Thumba in Kerala.
Air India to auction its properties as part of asset monetisation plan
Air India has decided to auction seven of its properties, as a part of its asset monetisation plan. The national carrier has mandated the auctioneer MSTC to put these properties under the hammer. According to the auction notice, Air India proposes to sell its exclusive properties in the form of land parcels/built-up flats located at prime location in Mumbai, Bengaluru and Trivandrum. This sale is likely to raise around 80 crore rupees. As per the financial restructuring plan approved by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs back in 2012, Air India is required to monetise its assets and generate 5,000 crore rupees by way of sale, leasing or developing an asset as a joint venture.
RBI to reconstitute oversight committee to deal with bad loans
The RBI has decided to reconstitute the oversight committee, OC, with more members after the government armed it with additional powers to resolve bad loans with banks that have crossed Rs 8 lakh crore. In a statement in Mumbai yesterday, the RBI said, while the current members will continue in the reconstituted OC, names of a few more will be announced soon. It said, the apex bank would also be constituting a Committee comprised majority of its independent Board Members to advise it in the NonPerforming Asset matter. The statement said RBI already sought information on the current status of the large stressed assets from the banks. The RBI further said it has also envisages an important role for the credit rating agencies in resolving the issue. Sources said the RBI has identified about 50 major cases for NPA resolution.
Fact Box: Federation Cup and Other Football Tournaments & Leagues in India
On 21st May, 2017, the Bengaluru FC defeated Mohun Bagan 2-0 to win the Federation Cup. The final event was held in Barabati Stadium in Cuttack, Odisha. Federation Cup is India’s first major football competition involving the clubs. It was established by the All India Football Federation in 1977. During 1980s and 1990s, it was considered to be most popular foot ball tournament in India. The other popular football tournaments of India include
Durand Cup:-Santosh Trophy, Indian Super League, Subroto Cup, IFA Shield etc. Important facts about these tournaments are given below: Durand Cup Durand Cup is India’s oldest football tournament and is among the oldest in the world. It is named after its founder Sir Mortimer Durand, who served as Foreign Secretary in charge of India from 1884 to 1894. The first Durand Cup tournament was held in 1888. In the beginning, it was an Army cup for the British Indian Army troops. Over the years, it opened up for civilian teams. In 2006, the army passed its administration to civilians’ organizations called Durand Football Tournament Society (DFTS) and Osians. The latest Durand Cup Tournament was held in 2016 and current champion is Army Green.
IFA Shield:- IFA Shield is second oldest football competition of India organized by Indian Football Association and in existence since 1893. Since 2015, IFA Shield has been designed as an under- 19 youth football tournament. Its current sponsor is LG and latest competition was held in 2016, won by Tata Football Academy.
Subroto Cup:- Subroto Cup Football Tournament is an inter-school football tournament named after Air Marshal Subroto Mukerjee. It was started in 1960. More than 50 school teams participate in this competition including schools from Nepal and Afghanistan. It is conducted by the Indian Air Force, with support from India’s Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports. The Madhyamgram High School, in West Bengal us known for winning this tournament for seven times.
Santosh Trophy:- Santosh Trophy, started in 1941, is an annual Indian football tournament platyed by states and government institutions. It is named after Maharaja Sir Manmatha Nath Roy Chowdhary of Santosh, who served as President of the IFA. The first winners were Bengal. West Bengal has been the most successful team in the tournament and also the current champion with its 32nd title in hand.
Indian Super:- League Indian Super League (ISL) *Officially Hero ISL+ is a men’s professional football league. It was founded in 2013 and is based on franchise model on the lines of IPL. Currently, there are eight teams in ISL viz. Atlético de Kolkata; Chennaiyin FC; Delhi Dynamos; Goa; Kerala Blasters; Mumbai City; North East United and Pune City. So far three seasons have held of which two have been won by Atlético de Kolkata (2014 & 2016) while one season was won by Chennaiyin FC (2015).
I-League:- I-League (officially Hero I League) is another professional league in football in India. It was launched in 2007 as ONGC I-League and as a successor of National Football League. So far, nine sessions have been conducted of this league. It is contested by 10 football clubs and considered to be the primary competition in Indian football. The 10 clubs are Aizawl, Bengaluru FC, Chennai City, Churchill Brothers, DSK Shivajians, East Bengal, Minerva Punjab, Mohun Bagan, Mumbai and Shillong Lajong.
India wins all 10 Gold Medals at South Asian Junior Table Tennis Championships
The South Asian Junior Table Tennis championship was held in Mount Lavinia, near Colombia in Sri Lanka. In a stunning performance, the paddlers from India have won all the 10 Gold Medals on offer in this tournament. Apart from 10 gold medals, the Indian participants have also won 14 medals, thus taking the medal tally to 14. In this championship, top seeded Manav Thakkar won Junior Boys final; while Archana Girish Kamath won Junior Girls final. In Cadet Boys final, top-seed H. Jeho won the Gold Medal. India led the championship with eight points, followed by Sri Lanka (six points).