07.10.20 Daily BPSC Current Affairs


Bihar tops heartland states in tapwater reach

As poll-bound Bihar sets a target to cover its all 1.9 crore rural households with tap connections for drinking water supply by next year, it’ll become the first among what used to be called the BIMARU states (Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh) to achieve the target of ‘Har Ghar Jal’ under the Centre’s ambitious Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM), a full three years ahead of the national goal of 2024.

Among the other three states, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan are expected to complete the mission only by 2022, 2023 and 2024 respectively. In fact, all these states have, so far, covered much less than the national average (nearly 30%) of rural households with functional household tap connection (FHTC) under the JJM which was launched in August last year.

This Mission aims at ensuring potable water supply in adequate quantity (55 litres per person per day) and of prescribed quality to every rural household on regular and long-term basis with the aim of improving access and also in the process improving health outcomes and overcoming social barriers that disadvantaged communities face in reaching shared water sources.

Bihar was working on such a programme even before the announcement of the JJM and has, so far, covered over 83% of its total 1.9 crore rural households with one of its districts, East Champaran, already achieving its target and 17 others covering over 90% of their total rural households with tap water supply.

Analysis of district-wise performance of all 38 districts of Bihar under the JJM shows that there are many districts which are quite far from achieving their targets in terms of covering their rural households with FHTC. The worst among low performers include Kishanganj, Katihar, Araria and Purnia. These are the districts which are part of the historically neglected Seemanchal.

As far as other states are concerned, Telangana with covering 98% of its rural households with tap water supply is the best performer and is expected to achieve its target in next few months. Though Goa claims to have already achieved its target of 100% FHTC this month, the task was not tough for this small state right from the beginning as it has only 2.63 lakh of rural households.

As per the JJM timeline, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Meghalaya, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Sikkim will cover all of their rural households by 2022 while Arunachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Chhattisgarh will achieve their target by 2023.

The states which will reach their goal of 100% FHTC by 2024 include Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Kerala, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand and West Bengal.

The Mission has a total budget of Rs 3.60 lakh crore which includes central share of Rs 2.08 lakh crore. The remaining Rs 1.52 lakh crore is to be borne by the states.

Under the JJM, the priority is currently being given to saturating villages in water-scarce and water-quality affected areas, aspirational districts, SC/ST dominated villages/ habitations and villages coming under ‘Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojna’(SAGY).


12th BRICS Summit to be held virtually on November 17

The 12th BRICS Summit will be held on 17th November 2020 via video conference.

The theme of the Meeting of the Leaders of BRICS countries which includes Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa is “BRICS Partnership for Global Stability, Shared Security and Innovative Growth”.

The Summit this year is being held under the Chairmanship of Russia and aims at a multifaceted cooperation between the member countries.

The five member countries have continued close strategic partnership on all the three major pillars of peace and security, economy and finance, cultural and people-to-people exchanges.

World Cotton Day: 07 October

The WHO-recognised World Cotton Day (WCD) is observed on 7th October since 2019 to celebrate the international cotton industry and its contribution to communities and the global economy.

The day was inaugurated by the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Geneva on October 7, 2019.

WCD Day was initiated by the Group of Cotton-4 countries namely Benin, Burkina Faso, Chad and Mali to reflect the importance of cotton as a global commodity.

Union Cabinet approves signing of Memorandum of cooperation in field of cyber-security between India & Japan

The cabinet gave its approval for signing a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) in the field of cyber-security between India and Japan.

The MoC will enhance cooperation in areas of mutual interest, which in­cludes capacity building in the area of cyberspace, protection of critical infrastructure, cooperation in emerging technologies, sharing information on cyber security threats and malicious cyber activities.

The Cabinet also approved the ratification of seven chemicals listed under Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs).

The Stockholm Convention is a global treaty to protect human health and environment from POPs, which are identified chemical substances that persist in the environment, bio-accumulate in living organisms, adversely affect human health and have the property of long-range environmental transport.



Centre to urgently release Rs. 20,000 crore as compensation to States for revenue losses


The Centre will urgently disburse nearly 20 thousand crore rupees among the states from the amount collected as compensation cess this year.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman made the announcement after the 42nd GST Council meet.

The Centre will also disburse Rs. 25 thousand crore towards Integrated GST for 2017-18 to those states that received less amount due to the anomalies.

Also from starting from 1st January next year, taxpayers with less than Rs. 5 crore annual turnover will not be required to file monthly GSTR-1 and GSTR-3B returns.


C-DAC to commission India’s fastest Supercomputer ‘PARAM Siddhi – AI’


The Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) will be commissioning India’s largest HPC-AI supercomputer ‘PARAM Siddhi – AI’.

This initiative will place India among the top countries in global AI supercomputing research and innovation.

The initiative was headed by Abhishek Das, Scientist and Program Director (HPC-AI Infrastructure Development) at C-DAC, who conceived the idea and designed the architecture for the largest HPC-AI infrastructure in India.

This high-performance computing-Artificial Intelligence (HPC-AI) supercomputer is a machine with 210 AI Petaflops (6.5 Petaflops Peak DP).

Government launches API integration between PM SVANidhi Portal and SBI eMudra Portal


The Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs will integrate the application programming interface (API) between SVANidhi portal and various banks to expedite loan sanctioning and disbursement process under Modi government’s PM SVANidhi scheme for nano entrepreneurs.

To begin with, the ministry launched the API integration between the PM SVANidhi portal and SBI’s eMudra portal.

This integration will facilitate seamless flow of data between the PM SVANidhi Portal and SBI’s eMudra Portal in a secure environment.

It will expedite the loan sanctioning and disbursement process, to benefit the street vendors seeking a working capital loan under the Scheme.

Ministry would perform similar integration with other banks as well for which a consultative meeting will be held shortly.

Govt to launch e-mart for artisans, digital monitoring for ‘Van Dhan start-ups’

With the pandemic leaving many without work, the government is all set to launch an e-marketplace by July end to host around 5000 tribal artisans to begin with. The government sees this e-mart as a way to create an independent online space of artisans to put out their products that have been wasting away in the absence of buyers.

The government commissioned on trial a website that will give all details, statistics and real-time information of the VDVKs and also enable GPS linkages to connect those executing the activities in the villages to those monitoring the scheme in the states and in the central government. After the trial run till June 30, a formal launch is expected.


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