Flash Cards

Day#5 Current Affairs Flash Cards [PRELIMS 2020]

RUCO (Repurpose Used Cooking Oil) initiative; ‘Seva Bhoj Yojna’; Sharda Prasad Committee; Atmospheric Laser Doppler Instrument (Aladin); NCAER State Investment Potential Index (N-SIPI) report; National Council of Applied Economic research;
By IASToppers
July 30, 2019



State Investment Index report is released by which institute of India?

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  • State investment index report is released by National Council of Applied Economic research.

Enrich Your Learning:

NCAER State Investment Potential Index (N-SIPI) report

  • NCAER launched the index in March 2016, to provide metrics of economic governance, competitiveness and growth opportunities at the state and regional level.
  • The index is designed to provide a systematic and reliable go to reference for policy makers, existing businesses and potential domestic and overseas investors.
  • The ranking of 20 states and one Union Territory of Delhi was based on six pillars — land, labour, infrastructure, economic climate, governance and political stability and business perceptions.
  • The index ranks competitiveness on six pillars: land, labour, infrastructure, economic climate, political stability and governance and business perceptions.
  • These six pillars are classified under four broad categories: Factor driven (land and labour), efficiency driven(infrastructure), growth driven (economic climate and political stability & governance) and perceptions driven (ranking of business climate built on firm surveys).


About National Council of Applied Economic research:

  • Established in 1956, NCAER is India’s oldest and largest independent, non-profit, economic policy research institute.
  • NCAER’s work falls into four thematic areas: Growth, Macro, Trade, and Economic Policy; Investment Climate, Industry, Infrastructure, Labour, and Urban; Agriculture and Rural Development, Natural Resources, and Environment; Poverty, Equity, Human Development, and Consumers.



What is Atmospheric Laser Doppler Instrument, also known as ALADIN?

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  • The Atmospheric Laser Doppler Instrument (ALADIN) is the payload of the ADM-Aeolus mission, which will provide direct measurements of global wind fields.

Enrich Your Learning:

Atmospheric Laser Doppler Instrument (Aladin)

  • It will determine the wind velocity component normal to the satellite velocity vector.
  • The instrument is a direct detection Doppler Lidar operating in the UV, which will be the first of its kind in space.
  • ALADIN comprises a high energy laser and a direct detection receiver operating on aerosol and molecular backscatter signals in parallel.
  • The laser is all solid-state, based on Nd-YAG technology and high power laser diodes.
  • So the Aeolus instrument, the Atmospheric Laser Doppler Instrument, or Aladin for short, comprises a powerful laser, a large telescope and a very sensitive receiver.
  • The detector is a silicon CCD whose architecture allows on-chip accumulation of the returns, providing photon counting performance.
  • The Aeolus satellite is developed for the European Space Agency by EADS Astrium Satellites as prime contractor for the satellite and the instrument.



The Sharda Prasad Committee was constituted by which ministry?

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  • The Sharda Prasad committee was constituted by the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship.

Enrich Your Learning:

Sharda Prasad Committee

In 2016, the Government of India formed the Sharada Prasad Committee to rationalise the Sector Skill Councils (SSCs), which are employer bodies mostly promoted by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, the Confederation of Indian Industry and other industry associations, and improve ‘Skill India’.

  • Sharada Prasad Committee was constituted to Review, Rationalize and Optimize the Functioning of Sector Skill Councils.
  • The committee submitted its report in 2016.

Significance of the report:

  • It is the first Committee to look at the National Vocational Education and Training System in a holistic manner since 1952.

Objectives of the committee:

  • Meet the exact skill needs of the industry.
  • Provide relevant skills and decent means of livelihood to each youth entering the labour market; and
  • Design a holistic and credible skill development system which could meet skills needs of the domestic industry and realize the vision of our Prime Minister to make India as the Skills capital of the World.



Under which scheme, Centre’s share of Central Goods and Services Tax (CGST) and Interstate GST charged on raw food materials purchased by the religious institutions will be refunded?

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  • ‘Seva Bhoj Yojna’

About ‘Seva Bhoj Yojna’:

  • The scheme seeks to reimburse the central government’s share of Central Goods and Services Tax (CGST) and Integrated Goods and Service Tax (IGST) on purchase of raw items such as ghee, edible oil, atta, maida, rava, flour, rice pulses, sugar and jaggery, which go into preparation of food/prasad/langar/bhandara offered free of cost by religious institutions.
  • The main objective of the scheme is to lessen the financial burden of such charitable religious institutions, which provide free of cost without any discrimination to the general public and devotees.


The charitable religious institutions including temples, gurudwara, mosque, church, dharmik ashram, dargah, monasteries, which fulfill the following criteria are eligible for the grant:

  • The institutions that have been in existence for at least five years before applying for financial assistance/grant.
  • The institutions that serve free food to at least 5000 people in a month.
  • The institutions covered under Section 10 (23BBA) of the Income Tax Act or those registered as Society under Societies Registration Act (XXI of 1860) or as a Public Trust under any law for the time being in force of statuary religious bodies constituted under any Act or institutions registered under Section 12AA of Income Tax Act.

Selection criteria:

  • All eligible religious and charitable institutions first must register with Darpan portal of NITI Aayog and get Unique ID generated by it.
  • Thereafter, they shall enroll themselves in CSMS Portal on the Ministry of Culture’s website in prescribed format. The applications will be examined by committee constituted for purpose.
  • On basis of recommendation of committee, competent authority in Ministry of Culture will register these institutions for reimbursing claim of CGST and Central Government share of IGST paid on mentioned specific items.



RUCO (Repurpose Used Cooking Oil) initiative was launched by which Indian Organization?

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The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) launched RUCO (Repurpose Used Cooking Oil) initiative to enable collection and conversion of used cooking oil to biodiesel.

  • Under this initiative, 64 companies at 101 locations have been identified to enable collection of used cooking oil. For instance: McDonald’s has already started converting used cooking oil to biodiesel from 100 outlets in Mumbai and Pune.
  • FSSAI wants businesses using more than 100 litres of oil for frying, to maintain a stock register and ensure that UCO is handed over to only registered collecting agencies.

Significance of the initiative:

  • FSSAI believes India has the potential to recover 220 crore litres of used cooking oil for the production of biodiesel by 2022 through a co-ordinated action.
  • While biodiesel produced from used cooking oil is currently very small, but a robust ecosystem for conversion and collection is rapidly growing in India and will soon reach a sizable scale.
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