Current Affairs July 2017 - Regional

1 - President legalized 'Kambala' buffalo races in Karnataka


President Pranab Mukherjee approved the promulgation of the prevention of cruelty to animals (Karnataka Amendment) Ordinance, 2017, legalizing the traditional 'Kambala' sport in Karnataka.

Kambala is a folk sport, held traditionally under the auspicious local property owners and households, in coastal Karnataka. The sport generally starts in November and lasts until March.

It involves a pair of buffaloes tied to the plough and anchored by one person. They are made to run in parallel muddy tracks in a competition in which the fastest team wins.

2 - Madhya Pradesh created a world record with plantation of 6 crore saplings in day


The Madhya Pradesh government planted six crore saplings on the banks of Narmada in 12 hours as part of its river conservation efforts.

The state could make its way into the Guinness World Records. The plantation drive was conducted along the banks of the river covering 24 districts of the state.

The Uttar Pradesh government had created a world record by planting five crore saplings in 24 hours but in two days (12 hours per day) in July 2016.

3 - First Maize Based Mega Food Park to be set up in Kapurthala, Punjab


Shri Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Union Minister of Food Processing Industry laid the foundation stone for First Maize based Mega Food Park in Kapurthala, Punjab.

Maize Based Mega Food Park is the first major and serious step in the history of India for containing the desertification problem of Punjab. It will make the farmers turn to maize cultivation, which need less water for more production.

The Mega Food Park is being developed by Sukhjit Mega Food Park & Infra Limited at village Rehana Jattan, Phagwara, District Kapurthala, Punjab.

4 - A 2-day Regional Conference on “Good Governance and Replication of Best Practices” inaugurated

Regional Conference

A two-day Regional Conference on “Good Governance and Replication of Best Practices” involving 12 States and 4 UTs of Northern, Western and Central Region of India was inaugurated.

The Conference was organized by the Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG), Government of India, in collaboration with the Government of Uttarakhand & Administrative Training Institute (ATI), Nainital.

Speaking on the occasion, Shri C. Viswanath, Secretary for DARPG, Government of India mentioned that this is the 26th such Regional Conference being organised by the Department on diverse themes pertaining to Best Practices.

5 - The State of Jammu and Kashmir joined GST

Jammu and Kashmir

The President of India has promulgated today two ordinances, namely, the Central Goods and Services Tax (Extension to Jammu and Kashmir) Ordinance, 2017 and the Integrated Goods and Services Tax (Extension to Jammu and Kashmir) Ordinance, 2017.

This extends the domain of Central GST Act and the Integrated GST Act to the State of Jammu and Kashmir, with effect from 8th July, 2017. With this, the State of Jammu and Kashmir has become part of the GST regime, making GST truly a “one nation, one tax” regime.

Due to the special provisions applicable to the State of Jammu and Kashmir extra steps had to be taken before the State could join the GST fold.

6 - All gram panchayats in Haryana to levy tax on entertainment, amusement activities

Amusement Activities

Haryana Government has directed all gram panchayats to levy tax on entertainment and amusement activities including cinema hall, show, video game parlor, mela, fair, exhibition or any kind of amusement park in the limits of gram panchayats concerned.

The panchayats would levy the tax at the rate as specified by the government from time to time within a period of 15 days from the date of publication of this order in the official gazette.

7 - ‘Elevate 100’ scheme launched by Karnataka for start-ups

Elevate 100

The Government of Karnataka has launched the 'Elevate 100' scheme to identify and nurture 100 most innovative start-ups in the state and elevate them further to the next level of success. Karnataka government will provide financial assistance as well as non-financial assistance such as technical and business support.

Karnataka Biotechnology and Information Technology Services will act like a mentor to start-ups across the state by providing them with networking opportunities, idea validation, incubation facilities, and in-depth sessions. This will involve around 400 crores investment.

8 - AIIB approved USD 329 million loan for Gujarat’s road development


China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank gave nod to USD 329 million loan to build access roads to 4,000 villages in in all 33 districts of Gujarat and improve road connectivity into these villages. This will not only help improve economic development of Gujarat, but also integrate isolated and poor rural populations with the rest of the state.

The Bank is also in process of piloting a software tool to monitor the projects progress. This loan approval is a part of one of the multi-phase Gujarat’s Chief Ministers Rural Roads Programme that complements the Centres Prime Ministers Rural Roads Programme.

9 - Odisha Government to set up High-Performance Academy


Odisha government has decided to set up a High-Performance Academy in Bhubaneswar, for which it has inked an Expression of Intent (EOI) with the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and Athletics Federation of India. It has been for the first time that International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) united with any state government in the country for developing the academy.

Academy will provide training to athletes, professional environment and approach for athletes with the help of international standard infrastructures for field and track events and better technology.

10 - e-RTI launched by Delhi Government


Delhi government launched facility of filing RTI application in online mode. With this, Delhi became second state, after Maharashtra, to do so. This will not only let the government put all relevant information online to ensure transparency but also enable citizens to file online Right to Information (RTI). The portal is designed and developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC).

Information pertaining to 172 departments will be made available online on portal. RTI fees can be made online and an applicant can track status anytime online.

11 - Maharashtra launched free injectable contraceptive for women

Injectable Contraceptive

On the World Population day, state government of Maharashtra launched a reversible method of contraception through intramuscular injections for women, named as ‘Antara’. Antara is an injection of Medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA), a birth-control hormone. According to the state health officials, this injection is a safe means for birth control.

It is effective for three months. Injection ‘Antara’ can be injected intramuscularly to women in the age bracket of 18-45 years. This program was launched in 23 district hospitals, 20 medical colleges and 12 women’s hospitals.

12 - Rajasthan became the first state to fix minimum education qualification for a co-operative body poll

Minimum Education Qualification

Rajasthan state government decided to fix norms of minimum educational qualifications for contesting elections to village co-operative societies and various other cooperative bodies, for which it had to amend State Cooperative Societies Rules, 2003. This decision would benefit about 10,000 cooperative and agricultural credit societies.

The educational qualifications will vary from Class V to Class VIII for election members of governing boards of dairy societies, farming societies, housing construction societies, urban banks, primary land development banks, credit societies, salary earners' societies and cooperative unions.

13 - Odisha government to set up Haj House in Bhubaneswar

Haj House

The Odisha government has decided to set up a Haj House in Bhubaneswar for the welfare of Haj pilgrims. The Odisha government has also sanctioned five crore rupees for the development of educational institutions in the state for welfare of minority community children.

Besides, the government will construct 100 multi-purpose centres for Muslim people in next three years. The state government also has plans to establish direct plane communication between Bhubaneswar and Mecca for the welfare of pilgrims.

14 - Meghalaya CM Mukul Sangma launched LIFE program


Meghalaya Chief Minister, Dr. Mukul Sangma, launched the “Livelihood Intervention and Facilitation of Entrepreneurship” (LIFE) program at Songsak. The programme offers drive on improving the livelihood of rural poor in a viable manner through the process of SHGs, Village organisation and Producers Groups.

LIFE is a programme of the State Rural Livelihood Society (MSRLS). MSRLS is an agency of the Community and Rural Development Department of Government of Meghalaya, which is implementing the Centre's flagship programme - National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM).

15 - Centre released advance grant-in-aid of Rs. 51.30 crores to Arunachal Pradesh


The Centre released in advance two instalments of grant-in-aid to the State Government of Arunachal Pradesh towards Central share of State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF).

Due to heavy rains and floods in North East, Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Finance, Government of India has released Rupees 51 crore and 30 lakh as grant-in-aid to the State Government of Arunachal Pradesh on the basis of recommendation of the 14th Finance Commission for relief necessitated by natural calamities to the State. This amount is being released in advance for rescue and relief operations required because of flash floods.

16 - Haryana government to set up eight new Women Police Stations at sub-division level

Haryana Government

Haryana Government decided to set up eight new Women Police Stations at sub-division level in the state. These will be established at Assandh, Dadri, Hansi, Gohana, Manesar, Dabwali, Ballabgarh and Naraingarh. Chief Minister, Mr Manohar Lal, approved a proposal to this effect. Each Women Police Station would have a hundred percent woman police staff.

The decision was taken as victims belonging to these areas were facing great difficulty in lodging their complaints, as they had to travel long distance to reach Women Police Stations at the district headquarters.

17 - Punjab eased rules for shooting crop-damaging animals

Punjab Eased

Punjab Government decided that short-term permits for shooting Wild Boar and Roz (Neel Gaye) to check damage to crops during crop season would no longer require a Panchayat resolution.

The state government also decided to simplify the procedure for sanctioning the 45-day permits for shooting these animals. It also decided to put the permit process online and on the WhatsApp digital platform to ensure ease of procedure for grant of the permits. These permits for limited hunting are confined to privately owned land and are meant only for animals damaging crops.

18 - Maharashtra to implement law against social boycott

Social Boycott

Since President Pranab Mukherjee cleared the legislation, Maharashtra became the first state to make social boycott a crime. The law that was unanimously passed in 2016 by Maharashtra legislature aims to prevent atrocities carried out by extra-judicial courts and caste panchayats. Victims will be compensated with this law and violators will be punished for three years in jail and a fine of Rs 1lakh.

The movement driven by late Narendra Dabholkar, invited public attention after he was shot dead and the Maharashtra legislature passed the law unanimously in 2016. It was due with the central government for the President's approval. The President passed the legislature on June 20, 2017.

19 - T R Zeliang sworn in as CM of Nagaland


TR Zeliang has been sworn in as the new Chief Minister of Nagaland. Mr. Zeliang won the trust vote by 47 votes to 11 in the 60-member House that has an effective strength of 59. Zeliang becomes the 19th chief minister of the north eastern state.

Governor PB Acharya administered oath to Zeliang after Shurhozelie Liezietsu failed to turn up in the special emergent session of the State Assembly to take a floor test.

20 - Bengal to be Focus State at WFI 2017


Bengal is going to be the ‘Focus State’ at World Food India (WFI) 2017, to be organised by the Food Processing Industries from November 3 to 5.

Bengal’s participation at WFI 2017, which will be the largest trade fair of its kind to be held so far in India, will be a golden opportunity for Bengal to showcase its potential in the food sector.

WFI 2017 will provide an opportunity for the most important stakeholder in the sector, farmer, to interact and network with Indian and global leaders across the food value chain.

21 - J&K government launched weekly festival at Dal Lake

Weekly Festival

The Jammu and Kashmir government has organised the first ever ‘Culture of Cruise’, a weekly cultural programme at the Dal Lake.

The program was organised by J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages (JKAACL) in association with the tourism department of Kashmir.

The innovative programme series brings writers, performance artists, musicians, poets and academics together and offers a program of performances, workshops, talks, forums and debates.

22 - Telangana launched “Janahitha” to receive complaints from public


The Telangana state government has launched an innovative programme christened “Janahitha” to receive complaints from public through a special portal. The programme started in Suryapet district on a pilot basis. Besides submitting their grievances, the public can also apply for various welfare schemes through this facility.

Janahitha will be implemented across the state in a phased manner. In addition, public can also track the status of their complaints. Officials at the district headquarters and Secretariat in Hyderabad will monitor the redressal of complaints and send SMS to the citizens on their status.

23 - Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik dedicated to the nation the state’s longest bridge

Naveen Patnaik

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik dedicated the state's longest bridge. This bridge is named after Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose and it is over the river Kathajodi. It will connect the state capital of Bhubaneswar with Cuttack.

The bridge reduces the distance between the two cities by 12km by road. The bridge is 2,815 metres long and 14 metres wide. It is the first three-lane bridge in the state having a two-way road and walkways for pedestrians on the both sides. A sum of Rs 114crore has been spent for construction of the bridge.

24 - President of India Inaugurated ‘Bicentenary Celebration of Paika Rebellion of Odisha’

Bicentenary Celebration

The President of India Shri Pranab Mukharjee inaugurated the “Bicentenary celebration of the heroic Paika Rebellion of Odisha, a valiant uprising of Paikas against the British rule” organised by the Ministry of Culture.

Many scholars, researchers and historians have opined that the Paika Rebellion of 1817 was India’s first organized armed rebellion against British Raj. The Paika Bidroha (Paika Rebellion) of 1817 in Odisha briefly shook the foundations of British rule in the eastern part of India.

25 - Punjab Government released Rs 90 lakh for construction of Ultra Modern Cattle Pond

Ultra Modern Cattle Pond

The Punjab Government has released Rs 90 lakh for the constructed of ultra-modern cattle pond at village Kanian Kalan in Jalandhar district including a veterinary dispensary at the site. Out of Rs 90 lakh, Rs 50 lakh would be used for feed and fodder of livestock, whereas a new shed would also be constructed with Rs 16.50 lakh.

The cattle pond will have the capacity of more than 2000 cattle. A detailed project report has already been prepared by the animal husbandry department and the whole project would be completed in next 2 months.

26 - DDA signs MOU with NIUA for preparing Delhi master Plan 2041


The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA) for preparation of Master Plan for Delhi 2041. The NIUA’s approach for the project consists of four phases.

The Master Plan for Delhi 2041 will be an enabling strategic plan, which would be the guiding framework of the planning and growth of Delhi until 2041. It would involve building a base line quantitative understanding of Delhi at local and regional levels.

27 - Kerala to host literary festival with tolerance as theme

Literary Festival

Kerala hosted the fifth edition of South India Writers Ensemble (SIWE) at Chengannur in coastal Alappuza district. The theme of the literary festival would be tolerance.

The three day annual literary gathering is aimed at bringing about an enriching interaction between writers from different languages and regions.

Creative writers, journalists, theatre and film personalities will deliberate on tolerance at the festival. It was organised by People for Performing Arts and More.

28 - Meghalaya CM launched ‘Mission Football’ in Shillong

Mission Football

Meghalaya Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma launched ‘Mission Football’ at a grand ceremony at JN Sports Complex, Shillong. The Mission Football aims at transforming Meghalaya, a state known for its love for the game, as the “football power house” of the nation.

Mission Football is an initiative to help develop skills of football enthusiasts and develop young footballers for the country. It is a dedicated programme for talent identification and nurturing of talents to develop national and international players.

29 - Funds released to West Bengal under NAM during last 3 years


Under Centrally Sponsored Scheme of National AYUSH Mission (NAM), total amount of grant-in-aid of Rs 471.230 lakhs, Rs 1,924.85 lakhs and Rs 1,298.056 lakhs was released during the year 2014-15, 2015-16 and 2016-17 respectively to West Bengal.

The said amount has been allocated for the activities under AYUSH Services, AYUSH Educational Institution, Quality Control of Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani & Homoeopathy (ASU&H) Drugs, Medicinal Plants, Flexi pool and Administrative cost. Under the National AYUSH Mission (NAM), eight camps were organized in the district of Bankura under Public Health Outreach Activities.

30 - Nitish Kumar became the Chief Minister of Bihar for the 6th time

Nitish Kumar

Nitish Kumar took oath as Chief Minister of Bihar for the sixth time and as the head of the government that would include BJP and its allies. Earlier to this, the party of Nitish Kumar, JD-(U) was supported by Mahagathbandhan allies with Lalu Yadav led RJD.

Senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi took responsibility of deputy chief minister. Governor of Bihar demanded Nitish Kumar to prove the majority of his new formed political party, supported by BJP.

Nitish Kumar has served as Chief Minister of Bihar from 2005 to 2014 and from 2015 to 2017.

31 - Vande Mataram made mandatory in Schools, Govt. and Private Offices by Madras Court

Vande Mataram

As per recent orders of Madras High Court, singing of Vande Mataram, the national song, has been made compulsory for “at least once a month” in schools, government offices, private entities and industries in Tamil Nadu.

Madras High court judge ruled out that if any person/organisation has difficulty in singing or playing the song, they should not be compelled or forced to sing it, provided there are valid reasons for not doing so.

Vande Mataram is a poem, composed by Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay in 1870s, which was later adopted as national song of India.

32 - Punjab signed MoU with Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics

Innovative New Diagnostics

Punjab has signed MoU with the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND), who will support Punjab Health Department by providing Rapid test kits for screening of high risk patients like HIV patients, Intravenous Drug Users (IVDU) patient.

FIND will also provide 4 Gene Xpert machines which will be installed at Sangrur, Bathinda, Tarn Taran and Hoshiarpur for free testing of viral load among these high risk group patients. The Health Department Punjab will be introducing RUPs (Reuse Prevention Syringes) so that blood borne infections cannot be spread from one patient to another.

33 - Mumbai Metro launched India’s first mobile ticketing system

Mobile Ticketing System

Mumbai Metro One has launched India's first Mobile Ticketing System 'OnGo'. It will help travellers pass the AFC gates using their mobile phones. The app will be implemented by mid August.

Passengers will be able to buy their token or pass and generate a QR Code to gain access through the automated fare collection (AFC) gates. Mumbai Metro is a consortium formed by Reliance Infrastructure Ltd, MMRDA and Veolia Transport SA, France.