Friday, 20 July 2018

20th July 2018 | Daily current affairs for APSC

PWD Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma today launched a first-of-its-kind pilot project to use waste plastic in road construction.

  • The pilot project, being done on an experimental basis, was launched on the Kahilipara-Dakhingaon Don Bosco Road in the presence of the PWD officials.
  • The new construction method that mixes bitumen with plastic waste is expected to serve several purposes – from checking plastic waste and saving the natural environment to adding to road durability and reducing costs.

With the Northeastern States demanding access to Chittagong Port in Bangladesh, Minister of State for External Affairs, Gen VK Singh said that Act East policy is not just a progression but a leap forward from the Look East policy, asserting that Act East policy is wider in scope geographically and is more action-driven and result-oriented.

  • The 10th edition of the Delhi Dialogue with the theme “Strengthening India-ASEAN Maritime Co-operation” was opened with a roundtable with Chief Ministers of Northeastern States. This shows the focus that government places on North East, said the Union Minister.
  • The roundtable was attended by most of the Chief Ministers of the Northeastern States barring Assam. The State was represented by State Industries Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary.
  • The Minister added that efforts are on to reinforce ancient links of culture and cooperation with the ASEAN region. He said government envisions Northeastern States to be active partners in developing linkages with the ASEAN. He further stated that as part of Act East Policy, North East has an important bearing on how things will evolve. He asserted that inclusive development of North East is a priority for the government.
  • The Ministers of Northeastern States spoke about the region’s relationships with ASEAN at a special plenary in the Delhi Dialogue. They said their States should have access to Chittagong port.
  • Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma stresses upon reopening of the old Stilwell Road connecting China as it would help develop border trade in Northeastern region.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj today said that the Centre has brought the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 in an effort to give citizenship to the people from minority communities who were persecuted in the neighbouring countries.

  • Asserting that the citizenship Bill should be passed, the minister called for support from the MPs to pass the Bill.
  • Replying to a question in the Rajya Sabha during the question hour, Swaraj said from time to time there have been reports of violence and harassment against the members of the minority communities in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. These include incidents of killing, persecution, intimidation, abduction, forced conversions, desecration and vandalisation of places of worship and attacks on their business establishments.
  • “These incidents are a matter of concern to the government. Concerns in the matter are regularly conveyed to the respective countries at bilateral level,” the minister said.
  • The Government of Bangladesh has made it clear that it considers attacks against the members of the minority community a serious matter and takes stern action against the perpetrators. The Government of Afghanistan has assured that it takes all possible steps to protect its citizens, including the religious minorities.
  • The issue of the continued poor condition and mistreatment of minority communities in Pakistan has been highlighted by India at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC)

Corruption watchdog-turned-political party PRISM today called for the resignation of Mizoram Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla for “misuse of power” by allowing his daughter-in-law to take ‘interviews’ on his behalf.

    Editorial Focus : Skilled Manpower for sustainable development


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