No proposal to scrap Article 370: Centre
• The Union government has no proposal to scrap Article 370 of the Constitution which gives special status to Jammu and Kashmir, Minister of State for Home Affairs Hansraj Gangaram Ahir said on March 27, 2018.
• The Minister stated while responding to a written question in the Lok Sabha that there is currently no such proposal under consideration of the government.
• The article, added to the Constitution by a Presidential Order in 1954, accords special rights and privileges to the people of Jammu and Kashmir and empowers its legislature to frame any law without attracting a legal challenge.
• The provision prohibits all Indians - except people from Jammu and Kashmir - from purchasing immovable property in the state, getting government jobs and availing state-sponsored scholarship schemes.
Union Government launches ‘E-Tribes India’
• The Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India, (TRIFED), under Ministry of Tribal Affairs has launched ‘E-Tribes India’ banners on e-commerce platforms such as Amazon, Snapdeal, Paytm & GeM.
• It also launched TRIFED’s websites-www.tribesindia.com, www.trifed.in and Retail Inventory Software and M-commerce app as part of digital india initiative.
• TRIFED’s handbook for retail trade and TRIFED’s quarterly magazine ‘Tribes Haat’ was also launched.
• TRIFED has developed its own e-commerce website for the sale of all its products and app to tab the mobile commerce.
• The purpose of going digital will help in expansion of tribal commerce and availability of tribal products over large area. It will result in reaping greater benefits for the tribal artisans.
AAI signs MoU with Assam government to develop villages in Kamrup
• The Airport Authority of India (AAI) on March 26, 2018 signed an MoU with the Assam government under its Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR) initiative for sustainable development of human settlements at villages in Kamrup district.
• The AAI would provide financial assistance under its CSR initiative of Rs 4.58 crore for the Kamrup district as per the estimates prepared by the UNDP to improve the resilience of communities around Guwahati Airport.
• The AAI through its CSR policy supports such initiatives for promoting infrastructure for convenience of the population with a view to improve the resilience of communities.
Union Government to undertake reduced borrowings in 1st half of next fiscal
• The Union Government has planned to undertake reduced borrowing in the first half of the next fiscal compared to the corresponding period of last year.
• It proposes to borrow 2.88 lakh crore rupees in the first half of 2018-19. This is 47.56 per cent of the budgeted gross borrowing programme of over 6.05 lakh crore rupees.
• The information was shared by Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg who said, from April to September 2017-18 the government had borrowed 3.72 lakh crore rupees which represents a substantial reduction in borrowings.
• Garg also added that the 47.56 per cent of budgeted gross borrowing in the first half of next fiscal is lower than the average of 60 to 65 per cent in last five years.
Saras Aajeevika Mela held in Delhi
• Union Rural Development Minister Narendra Singh Tomar inaugurated the Saras Aajeevika Mela at Pragati Maidan in New Delhi on March 26, 2018.
• Speaking on the occasion, Tomar said that the Ministry is working for the empowerment of rural women and the Aajeevika Programme and Self Help Groups have given the much needed employment to rural population specially women.
• Tomar added that the programme has been successful in bringing a socio-economic change.
• The Minister announced that from now onwards two Saras melas will be organized in each state.
Sri Lanka Navy sinks ship used by LTTE
• The Sri Lankan navy has sunk a ship used by erstwhile Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and captured by navy from Malaysia.
• The LTTE vessel, A522 named 'We Ling" was captured following the conclusion of the conflict and was anchored near the Colombo harbor under the navy's custody.
• As it was in an unusable condition, the government decided to sink it in the sea according to proper procedures.
• The Navy said the sunken ship will become a home to a number of aquatic animals and corals will grow inside making it an attraction for the divers and tourists. Plans are being considered to make the location a tourist destination.
• The Sri Lankan army fought a full fledged war for three decades against LTTE, which used to maintain its own navy and maritime assets.
Steve Smith steps down as Rajasthan Royals captain
• Australian skipper Steve Smith on March 26, 2018 relinquished the captaincy of Rajasthan Royals in the upcoming 11th edition of Indian Premier League starting from April 7.
• India's Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane has been named new skipper of Rajasthan Royals.
• Steve's decision to step down came in the wake of severe backlash he has faced after admitting to ball tampering during the third Test against South Africa.
• Steve has been given a one-Test ban by the ICC. Cricket Australia is understood to be considering still harsher sanctions.