January 2020

Daily Current Affairs (09-01-20)



Related Topic in KAS Prelims Syllabus:

Economy [Paper-II]: Infrastructure in Indian Economy, Energy and Power


The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved a Capital Grant as the Viability Gap Funding to Indradhanush Gas Grid Ltd (IGCL) for setting up the North East Natural Gas Pipeline Grid.

North East Gas Grid Project

  • The North East Gas Grid project is being implemented by Indradhanush Gas Grid Ltd (IGGL).
  • IGGL is a joint venture company of five central public sector enterprises, namely IndianOil, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, GAIL, Oil India and Numaligarh Refinery Ltd.
  • The joint venture was incorporated in August 2018 to develop and operate a natural gas pipeline grid in the North-East region.
  • The total length of the pipeline is planned to be 1,656 km and will be built at estimated cost of 9,265 crore (Including interest during construction).
  • It will cover eight states of the North-Eastern region i.e., Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura.
  • The Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas will identify milestones for major activities for this project and link the same for releases of capital grant of the project.
  • For effective monitoring of the project implementation, a Committee comprising of officials from Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas, Department of Expenditure, Ministry of Development of North East Region, Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change, and Department of Fertilizers will be formed, which would periodically review the progress in implementation of the project and take steps to smoothen out any issues in execution.
  • IGGL will enhance availability of natural gas in North East and ensure uninterrupted supply of natural gas to industries, domestic consumers and for transport purposes to establish a clean fuel led economy.
  • The North East Gas Grid will get the natural gas supply from GAIL’s Barauni – Guwahati pipeline, which is a part of Jagdishpur – Haldia & Bokaro – Dhamra Natural Gas Pipeline Project, popularly known as Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga’.

Socio-Economic and Environmental Benefits

  • Development of industrial climate in eight states of the north-eastern region.
  • Reduction in the usage of kerosene, wood etc. due to increased usage of environment friendly fuel natural gas thereby improving the environment in the region.
  • Improvement in the standard of living of peoples living in the region.
  • It will boost Exploration & Production activities and connect regional gas sources with pipeline network for early monetisation of natural resources in the region.
  • Possibility of installling bottling plants for LPG can be explored for reducing transportation cost.
  • Uninterrupted supply of LPG in the region will bring energy security to the people in the area.

[Source: PIB, Economic Times]



Related Topic in KAS Prelims Syllabus:

Economy [Paper-II]: National Income and Per Capita Income


  • National Statistical Office (NSO), Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation has released the First Advance Estimates of National Income at both Constant (2011-12) and Current Prices, for the financial year 2019-20 along with the corresponding estimates of expenditure components of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
  • It was released in accordance with the release calendar of National Accounts.
  • The approach for compiling the Advance Estimates is based on Benchmark-Indicator method.

Gross Domestic Product

  • Real GDP or GDP at Constant Prices (2011-12) in the year 2019-20 is likely to attain a level of 147.79 lakh crore, as against the Provisional Estimate of GDP for the year 2018-19 of Rs. 140.78 lakh crore.
  • The growth in real GDP during 2019-20 is estimated at 5.0 per cent as compared to the growth rate of 6.8 per cent in 2018-19.
  • GDP at Current Prices in the year 2019-20 is likely to attain a level of 204.42 lakh crore, as against Rs. 190.10 lakh crore in 2018-19 showing a growth rate of 7.5 per cent.

Gross Value Added (GVA) at Basic Prices

  • Real GVA at Basic Prices is estimated to increase from 129.07 lakh crore in 2018-19 to Rs. 135.40 lakh crore in 2019-20.
  • Estimated growth of real GVA in 2019-20 is 4.9 per cent as against 6.6 per cent in 2018-19.
  • The sectors which registered growth rate of over 4.9 percent are, ‘Electricity, Gas, Water Supply and Other Utility Services’, ‘Trade, Hotels, Transport, Communication and Services related to Broadcasting’, ‘Financial, Real Estate and Professional Services’ and ‘Public Administration, Defence and Other Services’ at 5.4 per cent, 5.9 per cent, 6.4 per cent, 9.1 per cent respectively.
  • The growth in the ‘Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing’, ‘Mining and Quarrying’, ‘Manufacturing’ and ‘Construction’ is estimated to be 2.8 per cent, 1.5 per cent, 2.0 per cent and 3.2 per cent respectively.

National Income

  • The nominal Net National Income (NNI), also known as National Income (at Current Prices) is likely to be 181.10 lakh crore during 2019-20, as against Rs. 168.37 lakh crore for the year 2018-19.

In terms of growth rates, the National Income registered a growth rate of 7.6 per cent in 2019-20 as against the previous year’s growth rate of 11.3 per cent

Per Capita Income

“The Per Capita Net National Income during 2019-20 is estimated to be Rs. 1,35,050 showing a rise of 6.8 per cent as compared to Rs. 1,26,406 during 2018-19 with the growth rate of 10.0 per cent

Private Final Consumption Expenditure (PFCE)

In terms of GDP, the rates of PFCE at Current and Constant (2011-12) Prices during 2019-20 are estimated at 60.2 per cent and 57.4 per cent, respectively, as against the corresponding rates of 59.4 per cent and 56.9 per cent, respectively in 2018-19.

Government Final Consumption Expenditure (GFCE)

In terms of GDP, the rates of GFCE at Current and Constant (2011-12) prices during 2019-20 are estimated at 11.9 per cent and 11.3 per cent, respectively, as against the corresponding rates of 11.2 per cent and 10.7 per cent, respectively in 2018-19.

Gross Fixed Capital Formation

  • In terms of GDP, the rates of GFCF at Current and Constant (2011-12) prices during 2019-20 are estimated at 28.1 per cent and 31.1 per cent, respectively, as against the corresponding rates of 29.3 per cent and 32.3 per cent, respectively in 2018-19.
  • Gross fixed capital formation, a measure of investments, is estimated to rise less than 1% in FY20, a collapse from near 10% rise in FY19.
[Source: PIB, Economic Times]



  • CISF will observe 2020 as the ‘year of mobility’ that will have a special focus on creation of more residential units and implementation of various welfare measures for the troops.
  • It will emphasise on taking all measures for welfare of troops and their families, creating infrastructure and logistics like housing, acquiring new land and procuring modern equipment, training with focus on physical fitness and sports and leveraging modern gadgetry and technology on duty.
  • Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) is mandated as the primary civil airports guarding force of the country apart from protecting some vital installations in the aerospace, nuclear, government and private domain.
  • Indian Army has initiated the process of identifying potential industry partners to implement the Government Owned Contractor Operated (GOCO) model for its base workshops and ordnance depots.
  • A Request For Information (RFI) was issued in December, 2019 to shortlist service providers with experience in “warehousing, logistics and supply chain management” for Central Ordnance Depot, Kanpur.
  • The Criteria for Service Provider is that it should be an Indian registered company with at least 10 years of working experience in related domains and have an average annual turnover of 50 crore for each of the last three financial years.
  • In GOCO model, the assets owned by government will be operated by the private industries.
  • Under the GOCO model, the private companies need not make investments on land, machinery and other support systems.
  • It will improve the operational efficiency of the army.
  • GOCO model was one of the recommendations of the Gen. DB Shekatkar (Retd.) committee to “enhance combat capability and re-balance defence expenditure.”
  • Union Cabinet chaired by the PM Modi has given its approval for an Agreement between Government of India and Government of Mongolia on Cooperation in the Exploration and Uses of Outer Space for Peaceful and Civilian Purposes.
  • The agreement enables the countries to pursue research in planetary exploration, space system and application of space technology.
  • The Agreement would lead to set up a Joint Working Group, drawing members from DOS/ISRO and Communications and Information Technology Authority of the Government of Mongolia, which will further work out the plan of action including the time-frame and the means of implementing this Agreement.
  • Indian Railways has planned to source about 1000 Mega Watt (MW) Solar Power and about 200 MW of wind power progressively by 2021-22 across Zonal Railways & Production Units.
  • Of this, 500 Mega Watt (MW) solar plants are to be installed on the roof top of Railway buildings which will be used to meet non-traction loads at Railway Stations, while 500 MW land based solar plants will be used to meet both traction and non-traction requirements.
  • The Nandyal – Yerraguntla section in Guntakal Division has been declared as the first solar section in South Central Railway.
  • Nandyal – Yerraguntla section is a new railway line laid by Railways and opened for passenger traffic in the year 2016 to bring the hinterland areas into rail map by providing rail connectivity.
  • India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA), the nodal body for the counrty’s pulses trade and industry, announced that the fifth edition of biennial global pulses conference, ‘The Pulses Conclave’ will be held from February 12-14, 2020 at Aamby Valley City in Lonavala, Maharashtra.
  • IPGA expects close to 1500 trade stakeholders from India and key pulses exporting countries like USA, Australia, Canada, Myanmar, Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania, Mozambique, Malawi, etc to participate in The Pulses Conclave 2020 (TPC 2020).
  • The Pulses Conclave 2020, as a part of its agenda will discuss increasing domestic production and consumption.
  • It will also bring to fore other areas of the trade like improving Processing efficiencies, increasing Consumption, Exports, Value Addition, Protein Extraction, Post-harvest Crop Management, etc.
  • Andhra Pradesh government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Germany-based KFW to encourage Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF) in the State.
  • As part of the agreement, the government has taken a loan of Rs 711 crores out of the estimated amount of Rs 1015 crore earmarked to be spent towards the climate-resilient, ZBNF.
  • Toll free number 1800 599 3366 for enquiries to provide information of the insurance scheme for the farmers was also launched on the occasion.
  • Government of Andhra Pradesh is implementing Andhra Pradesh ‘Zero-Budget’ Natural Farming (APZBNF) Programme, through Rythu Sadhikara Samstha (RySS) (corporation for farmers’ empowerment).
  • The programme has been initiated in 2015-16 with multiple objectives of enhancing farmers’ welfare, consumer welfare and for the conservation of the environment.
  • The programme has been aligned with other schemes like the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana.
  • Rythu Sadhikara Samstha (RySS) is a not-for-profit company fully-owned by Government of Andhra Pradesh.
  • Zero-Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF) is a holistic alternative to the present paradigm of high-cost chemical inputs-based agriculture.
  • It is very effective in addressing the uncertainties of climate change.
  • SASE has issued an Avalanche warning to Leh in Ladakh region.
  • The avalanche meant for Leh in Ladakh is important as it has two passes namely Chang La and Khardung La with world’s highest motorable roads through them with several avalanche-prone zones.
  • SASE is a laboratory of the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO).
  • The primary function of SASE is research in the field of snow and avalanches to provide avalanche control measures and forecasting support to Armed forces.
  • Union Cabinet chaired by Modi, has given its ex-post-facto approval on the Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) between Department of Health & Family Welfare (DOHFW), Government of India and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) on cooperation in the field of Health.
  • The Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) covers the following areas of cooperation:-
  • To reduce maternal, neonatal and child morbidity and mortality, improve key nutrition outcomes, by improving the reach, coverage and quality of essential primary health, immunization and nutrition services.
  • To increase the basket of choice and quality for family planning methods, specially for reversible methods, and increase access amongst younger women.
  • To reduce the burden of select infectious diseases [TB, Visceral Leishmaniasis (VL), Lymphatic Filariasis (LF)].
  • To strengthen health systems, including aspects such as budget utilization, management and skills of human resources for health, digital health, strengthening supply chains and monitoring systems.

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