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Indian Polity

 Ban on Heavy Metals in Firecrackers: Supreme Court has banned the use of following 5 harmful heavy metals in firecrackers. The heavy metals are lithium, antimony, mercury, arsenic and lead. The task of ban has been given to Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation – PESO in collaboration with Central Pollution Control Board – CPCB. Lithium is a metal used to impart red colour to fireworks. Antimony is used to create glitter effects. Lead oxide provides a special crackling effect which, if inhaled, in high concentration can cause damage the central nervous system.
e-RaKAM Portal: The Union Government has launched e-Rashtriya Kisan Agri Mandi (e-RaKAM) portal to provide a platform for farmers to sell agricultural produce. e-RaKAM is a first of its kind initiative that leverages technology to connect farmers from the smallest villages to the biggest markets of the world through internet.
Proxy voting allowed for NRIs: The Union Cabinet has cleared a proposal to extend proxy voting to Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and overseas Indians. Currently, only service personnel are permitted to vote through proxy. To make proxy voting for NRIs a reality, government is going to introduce bill to amend the Representation of People Act.

International Affairs

 ICT Facts and Figures Report 2017: International Telecommunication Union, the United Nations specialised agency for Information and Communication Technologies has recently released the report titled ICT Facts and Figures 2017. The report has claimed that India and China are home to 39% of the young internet users in the world.
 International Telecommunication Union: ITU was in news related to release of the report titled ICT Facts and Figures 2017. It has 193 countries as its members with its headquarters located at Geneva, Switzerland. ITU is responsible for allocating global radio spectrum and satellite orbits.
 World Bank gives go ahead to India for Kishanganga and Ratle Power Projects: World Bank has allowed India to construct Kishanganga, Ratle hydroelectric power facilities on tributaries of the Jhelum and Chenab rivers with certain restrictions under the 1960 Indus Water Treaty (IWT). Due differences over these projects, Pakistan had asked World Bank to facilitate the setting up of a Court of Arbitration to look into its concerns. On the other hand, India had asked for the appointment of a neutral expert to look into the issues, citing that concerns raised by Pakistan were “technical” ones. After that, representatives of the World Bank had held talks with India and Pakistan to find a way out separately.

Economic Affairs

Bill to implement GST in J&K passed: The Lok Sabha has passed the Central Goods and Services Tax (Extension to Jammu and Kashmir) Bill, 2017 and the Integrated Goods and Services Tax (Extension to Jammu and Kashmir) Bill, 2017. The two bills will replace the ordinances promulgated earlier in this regard to complete rolling out GST regime in the Himalayan State.
NABARD (Amendment) Bill passed by the Lok Sabha: The bill to Amend NABARD Act has been passed by the Government. The bill intends to increase the capital of NABARD, transfer RBI’s share in NABARD to the Government, add terms like MSMEs and to make the NABARD Act consistent with Companies Act, 2013.
National Handloom Day: 7th August every year is recognised as National Handloom Day to honour the handloom weavers in the country and also cater an impetus to India’s handloom industry. This year it was third edition of National Handlooms Day after it was instituted in 2015.

Environment

AGRI-UDAAN Food and Agribusiness Accelerator 2.0 Programme: It is an attempt to promote innovation and entrepreneurship in agriculture. It will mentor start-ups and help them connect with potential investors. The programme will help convert innovative ideas from India’s rural youth into viable businesses startups and help them connect with potential investors. It is managed by ICAR-NAARM’s (Indian Council of Agricultural Research-National Academy of Agricultural Research Management) technology incubator, a-IDEA along with IIM Ahmedabad’s Centre for Innovation.

Science & Tech

Venus Satellite: Israel has launched its first environmental research satellite named as VENUS – Vegetation and Environment Monitoring New Micro-Satellie. It is a joint collaboration between Israel Space Agency and its French counterpart CNES.

Kalyani Rafael Advanced Systems: KRAS is India’s first private sector missile sub-systems manufacturing facility set up at Hyderabad. It has been established in line with Make In India and government’s policy to encourage private sector defence manufacturing.

Person in News

Ustad Sayeeduddin Dagar: Ustad Hussain Sayeeduddin Dagar, one of the foremost exponents and custodian of the venerable Dhrupad tradition of Hindustani classical music passed away this August. Dhrupad is genre in Hindustani classical music and one of the oldest froms of compositions in classical Indian music genre.
 Rajiv Kumar: Economist Rajiv Kumar has been appointed as Vice Chairman of NITI Aayog. Mr Kumar is a senior fellow at public policy think tank Centre for Policy and Research. He is a DPhil in economics from Oxford and PhD from Lucknow University.
Venkaiah Naidu will be India’s 13th Vice President: Mr. Venkaiah Naidu will success out going Vice President Dr. Hamid Ansari and will be the 13th Vice President of India. He defeated his opposition nominee Gopalkrishna Gandhi by more than 150 votes.

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Khandagale Dhammapal
Khandagale Dhammapal Rank-1020 Year-2017 (IAS)
Dear Sir thank you for your warm wishes. I always had conviction in my abilities and the constant support and guidance from teachers and mentors like you helped me a lot in this strenuous journey , I would also like to thank you from the bottom of the heart for taking pains of providing questions on my DAF for personality test and sending me interview preparation book from Delhi to remote location of Latur in Maharastra. Once again thank you for helping me realize my dream.
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