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World Heritage Day being observed today


  • The 'World Heritage Day' is being observed across the globe on 18th April every year to celebrate cultural heritage and encourage people to conserve our rich past.
  • The day aims to spread awareness of the importance of protecting and preserving various sites around the world that have achieved world heritage status.
  • There are over 1000 World Heritage Sites (man-made and natural) recognized by UNESCO.
  • The theme of 2017 is “Cultural Heritage & Sustainable Tourism”.

Note:
  • The World Heritage sites are officially recognized by the UN and the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation(UNESCO).
  • There are 27 cultural, 7 natural and 1 mixed World Heritage Sites in India (till July 2016), that are recognized by the UNESCO.

Rajasthan govt to sign reworked MoU with HPCL for Barmer refinery


  • The Rajasthan government has signed a reworked MoU with Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) for the Rs 43,129 crore Barmer refinery.
  • The Barmer refinery will be the first in the country to produce BS-6 standard fuel.
  • The state government will have 26% stake in the project while rest will be held by HPCL.
  • The government has made 4800-acre land available at Pachpadra for the project and expected to take four years to complete.


Kerala govt. to provide pension to former circus artistes


  • The Kerala Government has decided to provide pension to former circus artists in the state.
  • The state govt. has allocated 1.13 crore rupees.
  • Thalassery in Kannur district is considered to be the cradle of Indian circus.


Centre initiates steps to bring TV, digital media under Working Journalists Act


  • The Union Labour and Employment Minister Bandaru Dattatreya has initiated steps to bring the electronic and digital media journalists too under the ambit of the ‘Working Journalists Act’.
  • The Labour Ministry will ensure stringent enforcement of the labor laws and implementation of Wage board recommendations in the newspaper industry.


Manipur CM launched ‘DARPAN’ web applications to check corruption


  • The Chief Minister of Manipur ‘N Biren Singh’ has launched the two web applications to check corruption and keep track of government activities.
  • The two web applications were Anti-Corruption Cell and Digital Application for Review by Public and Nation (DARPAN).
  • 'DARPAN' would upload details of projects right from the initial stage till sanction of the fund, progress of work and photos the work sites.


Bhopal to have India's first privately run railway station


  • First time in Indian Railway history ‘Habibganj’ Railway station in Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh) has been handed over to the private firm to be operated by it.
  • The station building will be developed in line with airport terminals.
  • The trains at the station will still be run by the Railways.


Google launches Aero for hyper-local services in India


  • Internet giant Google has launched an app "Aero" that will aggregate all hyperlocal services and food delivery apps in the country.
  • This is the first time that Google is entering the business of food delivery and home services in India.
  • Google- Aero is an accreditor that provides services through other startups in the domain.


Guitar pioneer Allan Holdsworth passes away


  • British Progressive rock and jazz fusion guitar pioneer ‘Allan Holdsworth’ (70-year) passed away in California, U.S.
  • He released twelve studio albums as a solo artist and played a variety of musical styles spanning a period of more than four decades, but is best known for his work in jazz fusion.
  • Holdsworth first appeared on a record in 1969 with the group ‘Igginbottom’.


Turkey cabinet agrees to extend emergency after referendum


  • Turkey cabinet has agreed to extend for another three months the state of emergency imposed after last July's failed coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
  • The emergency was due to end on 19th April 2017.
  • The decision came after a meeting of the National Security Council, chaired by Erdogan.
  • Now the decision will go to parliament for final approval.

Note:
  • The state of emergency has been renewed twice before in October and January after it was first declared on July 20th last year.

Indian engineer Trupti Jain wins ‘Cartier Women’s Initiative award’


  • An Indian environmental engineer ‘Trupti Jain’ (46-year) has won 2017 'Cartier Women's Initiative Awards' here for providing women working on farms with water management solutions and protecting small farmers against droughts and flash floods.
  • She was one among the six winners chosen for the Asia-Pacific laureate from a pool of nearly 1,900 applicants from over 120 countries and were selected by an independent international jury.
  • She receives a USD 100,000 prize money as well as a year of mentoring.


Haryana PRIs selected for Panchayat Sashaktikaran Puraskar-2017


  • Five Panchayati Raj Institutions(PRI) of Haryana have been selected for the 'Panchayat Sashaktikaran Puraskar-2017'.
  • 'Bhalkhi Gram Panchayat' of Rewari district has been selected for 'Rashtriya Gaurav Gram Sabha Puraskar-2017.'
  • The five PRIs selected by the Centre are: Jind Zila Parishad, Kalanaur Panchayat Samiti and Bhainsru Kalan Gram Panchayat of Rohtak district, Dhani Laxman Gram Panchayat of Bhiwani district and Khurdban Gram Panchayat of Yamunanagar district.
  • The awards would be given on the occasion of National Panchayati Raj Day (24th April) in Lucknow.

Note: These awards are being given to panchayats of various states for best performance during the year 2015-16.

Hanchinal receives M.S. Swaminathan Award


  • Rayappa Ramappa Hanchinal has been chosen for the sixth ‘Dr. M.S. Swaminathan Award’ for his contributions and sustained support to the areas of crop improvement for hot and very hot dry environments, seed production technology and intellectual protection rights in plant varieties.
  • He is the Chairperson of the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Authority, New Delhi.
  • The award is instituted and given under the aegis of Retired ICAR Employees Association (RICAREA) in association with the Nuziveedu Seeds Ltd (NSL).

Note: The Swaminathan award, conferred biennially on eminent Indian scientists who worked on Indian agriculture and allied sectors, carries a cash prize of Rs. 2 lakh, a medal and citation.
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