General Knowledge Notes - 26 June 2013

First C 17 touched down in India

18 Jun 2013 saw the first of the ten Boeing C 17 Globemaster III, ordered from the United States, touchdown in India, at Hindan airbase. With the training of the aircrew and the ground crew being conducted by the United States Air Force (USAF), the Indian Air Force accepted the delivery of the aircraft on 11 Jun 2013 at Long Beach, California. The aircraft will enhance the operational potential of the IAF with its payload carriage and performance capability and would augment the strategic reach of the Nation during disaster relief or any similar mission. The induction of C 17 is a major milestone in the modernization drive of the IAF.

Operation ‘Rahat’ Launched by the IAF

Last week, heavy rains wreaked havoc in the hill states of Uttarakhandand HimachalPradesh leaving thousands stranded including pilgrims in transit in various valleys. IAF assistance was sought for rescue operations. HQ Western Air Command(WAC) promptly responded to the requests from various states for providing flood relief. IAF undertook the task simultaneously in the sectors of Yamunanagar, Kedarnath-Badrinath axis, Rudrapyag valley, Karcham- Puh axis.

Loan for National AIDS Control Project-IV

An agreement for loan of US$ 255 million (equivalent) from World Bank for the “National AIDS Control Project (NACP-IV)” was signed between India and the World Bank. The Objective of the project is to increase safe behaviors among high risk groups in order to contribute to India’s national goal of reversal of the HIV epidemic by 2017. Project Component: The Project has three components that include implementation at the national, State and district levels: (i) Scaling-up Targeted Prevention Interventions; (ii) Behavior Change Communications; and (iii) Institutional Strengthening.

TRAI Reduced National Roaming Tariff Ceilings

TRAI reduced ceilings for national roaming calls and SMS and instituted a new regime for providing flexibility to telecom service providers to customise tariffs for national roamers through STVs and Combo Vouchers. TRAI has also mandated two types of free national roaming plans to be provided by all telecom service providers. These changes will come into effect from 1st July 2013.

Royapuram station may be history soon

More than 150 years after it was built in 1856, the country’s oldest surviving railway station may soon be demolished. Southern Railway is likely to raze the old Royapuram station in north Chennai, a heritage structure, for development work. Built by Madras Railway Company, Royapuram was selected as the site as it was on the edge of a settlement of British traders and locals near Fort St. George. For the next 17 years, Royapuram was the only railway station in the city until Madras Central Station became operational in 1873.

"Rupee retires"

The Indian rupee breached formidable resistance of 60 to the dollar to slump to a record low today, reinforcing the vulnerability of a country with limited reserves and struggling to narrow a record-high current account deficit. The partially convertible rupee fell to an all-time low of 60.76, breaching the previous low of 59.9850 hit on June 20. It closed trading at 60.7150/7250 versus its Tuesday close of 59.66/67.