Daily Current Affairs - 03rd Sep 2019

China lodges WTO trade complaint against US

  • China has lodged a complaint against the United States with the World Trade Organization (WTO), a day after new tariffs imposed by Washington on billions of dollars of Chinese goods came into force.
  • The world's two biggest economies have been embroiled in a bruising year-long trade war which escalated further when both sides moved ahead with fresh tit-for-tat levy hikes.
  • The US’s latest levies on imports from China took effect from 1st of September as it stepped up a high-pressure campaign aimed at compelling China to sign a new trade deal.

Eight Apache attack helicopters to be inducted into IAF at Pathankot on Tuesday

  • In a major boost to the Indian Air Force's combat capabilities, eight US-made Apache AH-64E attack helicopters are set to be inducted into the IAF on September 3.
  • The AH-64E Apache is one of the world's most advanced multi-role combat helicopters and is flown by the US Army.
  • The IAF had signed a multi-billion-dollar contract with the US government and Boeing Ltd in September 2015 for 22 Apache helicopters. The first four of the 22 helicopters were handed over to the air force by Boeing on July 27.
  • Boeing has delivered more than 2,200 Apaches to customers around the world since the aircraft entered production and India is the 14th nation to select it for its military.
  • Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa

Govt. planning J&K troop reduction: Jaishankar

  • External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar has stated that the Union government is planning to reduce the number of troops in Jammu and Kashmir, sent in the past month to deal with the aftermath of the Article 370 decision.
  • He added that there would be a reduction in the roughly 30,000 extra security forces deployed in Jammu and Kashmir since August 2.

GST collections drop to six-month low of Rs.98,202 crore in August

  • The Goods and Services Tax (GST) revenues slid to a six-month low of Rs.98,202 crore in August 2019. Average collections this financial year are still above Rs.1.02 lakh crore, however.
  • The total gross GST revenue collected in August, 2019 is Rs.98,202 crore of which CGST is Rs.17,733crore, SGST is Rs.24,239crore, IGST is Rs.48,958 crore and cess is Rs.7,273 crore.
  • The total number of GSTR 3B Returns filed for July up to August 31, 2019 is 75.80 lakh

Health Ministry legislation over violence against doctors

  • The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has proposed a legislation to address the issue of violence against healthcare professionals and damage to property of clinical establishments across the country.
  • A legislation titled "The Healthcare Service Personnel and Clinical Establishments (Prohibition of violence and damage to property) Bill, 2019" has been prepared.
  • The objections/suggestions may be forwarded within 30 days from the date of issue of this notice.
  • The move comes after doctors on several occasions went on an indefinite strike all over India as they were assaulted and attacked by family members of the attendants.

Hurricane Dorian cause severe flooding in Bahamas

  • The most powerful storm to hit the Caribbean islands of the Bahamas has torn roofs from buildings and caused severe flooding. Hurricane Dorian, a category five storm sustained winds of up to 295 kilometer per hour.
  • The hurricane is moving slowly westwards and may hit areas of the eastern US seaboard. US states of Florida, Georgia, North and South Carolina have all declared states of emergency.

India beat West Indies in 2nd cricket test at Kingston; Clinches series 2-0

  • India beat West Indies by a thumping margin of 257 runs to win the second Cricket Test and clinch series 2-0. Chasing a mammoth victory target of 468 runs set by India, West Indies were all out for 210 in their second innings on the penultimate day of the Test at Kingston, Jamaica.
  • This series victory put them on top of ICC World Test Championship points table with 120 points.
  • This victory was 28th in Tests for Virat Kohli making him the most successful Indian captain in the traditional format of the sport.

India's campaign ends at US Open with Rohan Bopanna's exit

  • India's campaign at the US Open came to an end after Rohan Bopanna suffered twin defeats in both the men's and mixed doubles events in New York.
  • He and his Canadian partner Denis Shapovalov suffered a 3-6, 4-6 loss to the 15th seeds Neal Skupski and Jamie Murray of Great Britain in a second-round match that lasted one hour 15 minutes.
  • In the mixed doubles event, Bopanna and Abigail Spears of the United States went down fighting 5-7, 6-7 against French-American pair of Fabrice Martin and Raquel Atawo also in the second round.

India, Japan discuss ways to strengthen bilateral cooperation

  • India and Japan have discussed ways to strengthen the existing bilateral cooperation and adoption of new initiatives for achieving peace and security in the region.
  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has co-chaired India-Japan Defence Ministerial Meeting with his Japanese counterpart Takeshi lwaya in Tokyo.
  • Mr Singh said, India and Japan will continue working together to further deepen the defence ties between both the nations.
  • The Indo-Pacific vision was also discussed at length during the meeting with emphasis on India's preference for a rules-based order along with centrality of Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN).

ISSF World Cup Shooting Championship: India finish at top with 5 gold

  • India finished at the top of the ISSF World Cup Rifle/Pistol Championship in Rio De Janeiro with 5 gold, 2 silver and 2 bronze medals. Indian pair of Manu Bhaker and Saurabh Choudhary of India defeated their compatriot rivals Yashaswini Deswai and Abhishek Verma in the summit clash of 10-Metre Air Pistol mixed team event.
  • India has now finished as the leading nation in the ISSF Senior World Cup events in 2019 with 16 gold, 4 silver and 2 Bronze medals.

ITR Filing 2019: Over 5.65 cr income tax returns filed as deadline ended on Aug 31

  • According to the tax department data, over 5.65 crore income tax returns were filed by taxpayers for the Assessment Year 2019-20 as the deadline ended on August 31, showing a 4 per cent rise in ITR filing over the previous year. Total number of income tax returns (ITRs) filed for AY 2018-19 was 5.42 crore.
  • The Income Tax Department has also made history with a quantum jump in the e-filing of ITRs with an all-time high record of 49,29,121 ITRs filed in a single day on August 31.
  • Out of the 5.65 crore ITRs filed so far, 3.61 crore have been verified.
  • A large number of taxpayers about 2.86 crore (79 per cent) have opted for e-verification, mostly using Aadhaar OTP

NRIs to get Aadhaar sans 180-day wait in 3 months

  • The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has said its systems will be ready within three months to offer the facility of issuing Aadhaar cards to NRIs with Indian passports without the mandatory 180 days waiting period, as announced in the Budget.
  • Meanwhile, the UIDAI is setting up Aadhaar Seva Kendras — similar to the concept of Passport Seva Kendras covering 53 cities across the country at an estimated project cost of Rs.300-400 crore.
  • These Aadhaar centres, meant to facilitate enrolment, updation and other activities, are UIDAI’s own and operate in addition to thousands of centres currently being run by banks and post offices, as well as in government premises (offering similar Aadhaar services).
  • UIDAI CEO Ajay Bhushan Pandey

PM Modi to embark on 3-day visit to Russia to attend EEF summit

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will leave for Vladivostok in Russia to take part in the 5th Eastern Economic Forum - EEF summit. The Prime Minister will also attend the 20th annual summit between Russia and India during the three-day visit.
  • On the sidelines of Eastern Economic Summit, the Prime Minister is expected to hold bilateral talks with the Government Heads of Japan, Malaysia and Mongolia.

Russia to train Indian astronauts

  • India and Russia are stepping up cooperation in the space sector with Moscow extending help in 4-5 critical areas of India’s ambitious manned mission to space, Gaganyaan. This includes training of Indian astronauts at Russian facilities beginning later this year.
  • Indian Space Research Research Organisation (ISRO) has outlined a road map to put a three-man crew in a low earth orbit for 5-7 days by December 2021 by an indigenous GSLV Mk-III launch vehicle from a third launch pad under construction at Sriharikota.
  • The Gaganyaan programme is expected to cost under Rs.10,000 crore and there will be two unmanned missions prior to the manned mission to validate the technologies.

Sri Lanka inks four agreements with Maldives

  • Sri Lanka and Maldives have exchanged four agreements of cooperation including facilitation of visa arrangements allowing for free 90-day on-arrival visas for visitors between the two countries.
  • The visa agreement contains provisions for grant of multiple entry non-resident business visas, thereby facilitating commercial engagements and private sector collaboration.
  • An MoU on Cooperation in the area of social protection, higher education, vocational training and youth development are other areas in which MoUs were signed during Sri Lankan Prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe's visit to Male.

Steering Committee on Fintech related issues submits report to FM Sitharaman

  • A government constituted Steering Committee on Fintech (Financial Technology) related issues has submitted its report to Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. It has recommended for putting in place a comprehensive legal framework for consumer protection keeping in mind the rise of Fintech and digital services.
  • The Steering Committee recommended the adoption of regulation technology by all financial sector regulators to develop standards and facilitate adoption by financial services providers.
  • It has also suggested that these financial sector regulators need to develop an institutional framework for specific use-cases of supervisory technology, testing, deployment, monitoring and evaluation.
  • The panel recommended that insurance companies and lending agencies be encouraged to use drone and remote sensing technology for crop area, damage and location assessments to support risk reduction in insurance and lending business.
  • It also recommended Department of Financial Services to work with PSU banks to bring in more efficiency to their work and reduce fraud and security risks.
  • The committee also suggested a special drive for modernization and standardization of land records by setting up a dedicated National Digital Land Records Mission.