1. April 4- International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action was observed all over the world to create awareness about the threat of mines, unexploded grenades and other explosive hazards that prevents the return of normalcy in areas affected by armed conflicts with the theme 2018 is Advancing Protection, Peace and Development.
1. National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) 2018 or NIRF-3 released by Ministry of Human Resource Development. This year it is third edition NIRF survey and was released as part of India Rankings 2018 for the Educational Institutions. The Indian Institute of Sciences, Bengaluru topped the list of Overall Rankings followed by IIT Madras at 2nd position, IIT Bombay at 3rd, IIT Delhi at 4th and IIT Kharagpur at fifth position. IISC Bangaluru also topped the University rankings, followed by Jawaharlal Nehru University and Benares Hindu University at second and third position, respectively. Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (IIT-M) was adjudged best engineering college and Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A) the best management institution. Delhi University’s Miranda House was adjudged best college, AIIMS-Delhi as best medical college and NLSIU-Bengaluru as best law school in country.
2. Mother’s Absolute Affection (MAA) programme with an aim to promote breastfeeding was launched by Himachal Pradesh Health Minister Vipin Parmar on March 4, 2018. The main objective is to create awareness among masses about the importance of breastfeeding. Beastfeeding helps in reducing the incidence of infant mortality and early childhood mortality and provides complete nutrition to a child.
1. The Union Cabinet has given its ex post facto approval to MoU between India and Iran on establishment of an expert group on trade remedy measures. The MoU will promote cooperation between two countries in area of trade remedies.
2. India, Japan and the United States participated in the ninth trilateral meeting in New Delhi on April 4, 2018. The meeting was held in the backdrop of the ongoing trade war between China and the USA that erupted after both sides imposed tariffs on each other’s goods. The main focus of this 'Trilateral Infrastructure Working Group' was on connectivity, counter-terrorism and other regional and global issues.
3. The construction of Turkey's first-ever nuclear power plant in Mersin region, a large port city on the Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey was inaugurated by the President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan along with Russian President Vladimir Putin on April 3, 2018. The first stage is due to be completed by 2023, on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of modern Turkey's founding. It is expected to be completed fully by 2026. Once completed the power station will contribute around 10 percent to the electricity needs of Turkey, which is significant as the nation has few energy resources of its own.
1. ASPIRE (Advanced Supersonic Parachute Inflation Research Experiment) to test supersonic parachute that will help its space exploration missions to land on Mars was successfully conducted by NASA. The parachute was launched aboard of sounding rocket from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in US. It was tested in sky, mimicking conditions of entering red planet. The test of ASPIRE was meant to mimic conditions that spacecraft will experience during red planet entry, descent and landing (EDL).
2. A MoU was signed between Indian Army with HDFC Bank on the Defence Salary Package. This MoU will benefit large number of serving and retired Indian Army personnel who are having their accounts with HDFC bank. It will also provide them an opportunity to access modern banking facilities.
3. The Hubble Space Telescope of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has discovered the most distant star ever seen named 'Icarus'. This huge blue star is located over halfway across the universe. It took nine billion years for the Icarus' light to reach the Earth. The star was named as 'Icarus' after the Greek mythological character who flew too near the Sun on wings of feathers and wax that melted.
1. SEBI (The Securities Exchange Board of India) has relaxed algorithm trading norms at commodity derivatives exchanges. It has raised limit of trading using algorithm trading process up to 100 orders per second by user from the existing limit of 20 orders per second. The decision was taken after receiving representations from exchanges along with views of SEBI’s subcommittee- Commodity Derivatives Advisory Committe.
2. The eight core infrastructure sectors grew by 5.3% in February 2018 released by Ministry of Commerce and Industry. In India, there are eight core sectors comprising of coal, crude oil, natural gas, petroleum refinery products, fertilisers, steel, cement and electricity.
3. The GST Council delegated its powers to an IT Grievance Redressal Committee to approve and recommend the steps to be taken to redress the grievance and provide relief to the taxpayer on April 4, 2018. The relief could be in the nature of allowing filing of any Form or Return prescribed in law or amending any Form or Return already filed. However, this mechanism will not be available to the individual taxpayer who face problems like poor internet connectivity or failure of power supply.
4. The digital initiatives by Export Inspection Council (EIC) for ease of export were launched by the Union Commerce and Industry and Civil Aviation Minister, Suresh Prabhu on April 03, 2018. In order to continue the vision for credible inspection and certification and to strengthen the confidence on Indian produce, three portals have been developed to reduce transaction time and cost in a transparent manner.
5. Jio Payments Bank Limited has commenced operations as a payments bank with effect from April 3, 2018. Jio Payments Bank is a 70:30 joint venture between Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries and the State Bank of India (SBI). In November 2016, Airtel Payment Bank became the first entity to commence operations as Payments Bank. Paytm Payments Bank and Fino Payments Bank commenced operations in 2017.India Post Payments Bank, which also got a license for a payment bank is yet to start its full-fledged operations in a formal way.
6. IndusInd Bank announced that it has launched a pilot WhatsApp enterprise solution to communicate with its customers. The customers of IndusInd Bank will now be able to check balance, obtain mini statement, check reward points as well as update of Aadhaar through WhatsApp. There will be a two-way communication with replies to customer messages seeking basic banking services.
1. Himanta Biswa Sarma elected as President of Badminton Association of India (BAI) for the next 4 years. Himanta Biswa Sarma is a Cabinet Minister in Assam. He took charge as the interim President of BAI in 2017 following the death of former BAI president Akhilesh Das Gupta. Former Tamil Nadu Badminton Association president and Lok Sabha MP from Dharmapuri constituency, Dr. Anbumani Ramadoss was elected as the treasurer uncontested. Ajay Singhania of Haryana Badminton Association was elected as General Secretary of BAI.Maharashtra Badminton Association President, Arun Lakhani, was elected as the Senior Vice-President unopposed. Omar Rashid, Secretary of Assam Badminton Association was elected unopposed as the Secretary (events).
1. Study Khazana, an e-portal, was awarded “For best emerging online Education Portal in North India” at the ‘World Education Summit and Award 2018’ at New Delhi. Study Khazana helps education-deprived aspirants get access to quality education irrespective of geographical boundaries and it encourages open knowledge movement. Actress Sharmila Tagore presented the award to Sana Baqai, the Founder of Study Khazana.
1. The 21st edition of the Commonwealth Games will begin on April 4, 2018 in Gold Coast, Australia, with a colourful opening ceremony. Carrara Stadium will host the opening ceremony which is expected to showcase Australia's diversity and culture. This year, the Games will mark the 5th time that Australia has hosted the games. India will be represented at the opening ceremony by a contingent of over 200 athletes who will be led by flag-bearer P V Sindhu, the Olympic Silver medalist. The mascot is “Borobi” and the motto is “Share the dream”.