CAO Weekly News Roundup- November WEEK -01

Crypto currencies, ICOs under SEBI lens {Digitalization}

The rising popularity of crypto currencies and the increasing number of entities looking at raising funds through Initial Coin Offerings (ICO), SEBI is evaluating whether such instruments and offerings can be brought under its regulatory purview.Related image

Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) is mulling whether an ICO can be regulated under the existing legal framework or certain amendments would be required in case the government wants the capital market watchdog to be the regulatory authority for such issuances.


  • Unlike an IPO, which is governed by SEBI regulations, there is no regulatory body for ICOs in India.
  • According to data (from UK-based CoinDesk), nearly $2.7 billion has been raised globally through ICOs since 2014.
  • Concerns related to ICOs can be gauged from the fact that ICOs are considered as illegal public finance mechanism used for issue of securities and money laundering.
  • According to a recent study, more than 2,500 Indians invest in bitcoin daily.
  • While crypto currencies and ICOs have risks and involve pooling of money, it cannot be regulated by SEBI unless it is relatable to the securities market.
  • Bitcoins are neither ‘commodities derivatives’ nor ‘securities’ under Securities Contracts (Regulation) Act, 1956 and this would require amendments and addressing of other related issues.

Government launches Food Regulatory Portal and Nivesh Bandhu Portal {Digitalization}

To mark the historic World Food Convention hosted for the first time by India, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi launched – Nivesh Bandhu – (

The unique portal or “investor’s friend”. The portal will help bring together information on central and state government policies, and incentives provided for the food-processing sector.

Nivesh BandhuImage result for Nivesh Bandhu

  • NiveshBandhu is an investor facilitation portal which will be launched by the Ministry of Food Processing during World Food India Expo 2017.
  • Its objective is to assist investors to make informed investment decisions.
  • The portal would provide information on Central and State Governments’ investor friendly policies, agro-producing clusters, infrastructure, and potential areas of investment in the food processing sector.
  • World Food India 2017 will provide global businesses a platform to explore Indian market across the value chain in food processing and food retail.
  • It brings together global & Indian leaders across the food value chain for possible partnerships and facilitates investment flow in the food processing sector

Government tweaks RKVY scheme to make farming remunerative {Agriculture Policy}

To make farming a remunerative profession, the government on Wednesday approved changes to ongoing central scheme Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) with a focus on value chain, post-harvest infrastructure and agri-entrepreneur development, among others.

Now, the scheme has been rebranded as RKVY-Remunerative Approaches for Agriculture and Allied sector Rejuvenation (RAFTAAR) to be implemented for three years till 2019-20.

HighlightsImage result for Remunerative Approaches for Agriculture and Allied sector Rejuvenation

  • RKVY is a continuing scheme under implementation from XI Five Year Plan.
  • RKVY – RAFTAAR scheme will incentivize States in enhancing more allocation to Agriculture and Allied Sectors.
  • It will provide considerable flexibility and autonomy to states in planning and executing programmes for investment in agriculture and allied sectors.
  • The funds would be provided to the States as 60:40 grants between Centre and States (90:10 for North Eastern States and Himalayan States).
  • It will also strengthen farmer’s efforts through creation of agriculture infrastructure that help in supply of quality inputs, market facilities etc.
  • It will further promote agri-entrepreneurship and support business models that maximize returns to farmers.

Vidyarthi Vigyan Manthan (VVM) is a nationwide science talent search examination organized by Vigyan Prasar {Education}

Vidyarthi Vigyan Manthan (VVM) is an initiation of Vijnana Bharati (VIBHA), in collaboration with National Council of Education Research and Training, an institution under the Ministry of Human Resources and Development and Vigyan Prasar, an autonomous organization under the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India.VVM 2017 - Vidyarthi Vigyan Manthan

VVM is a National program for educating and popularizing science among school students of VI to XI standards. VVM aims to identify and nurture the bright minds among the student community, who are keen on subjects related to science.


  • To conduct an annual talent search exam at the national level to identify students who have a scientific bent of mind.
  • To provide the winning students with mentors to enrich science learning experience to carry forward their science education at higher levels.
  • To organise exposure visits for the winners to various R&D institutions in the country.
  • To identify successful students at the State and National levels and felicitate them with prizes and certificates.
  • To create interest among students in science.
  • To educate school children about India’s contributions to the world of science and technology, both traditional and modern.
  • To provide hands-on training to students through workshops and other events.

India jumps 30 places, breaks into top 100 of World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business {Indian Economy}

In news

  • India has jumped 30 places to rank 100th in the World Bank’s ‘ease of doing business’ ranking, helped by a slew of reforms in taxation, licensing, investor protection and bankruptcy resolution.
  • India is the only large country this year to have achieved such a significant shift. On the “distance to frontier metric,” one of the key indicators in the survey, India’s score went from 56.05 in Doing Business 2017 to 60.76 in Doing Business 2018

In its annual report ‘Doing Business 2018: Reforming to Create Jobs’, the World Bank said that India’s ranking reflects nearly half of the 37 reforms, adopted since 2003, implemented in the last four years.

Areas where India lags

  • Starting a business, enforcing contracts and dealing with construction permits.
  • It takes 30 days now to register a new business, down from 127 days 15 years ago, but “the number of procedures is still cumbersome for local entrepreneurs who still need to go through 12 procedures


New Zealand is the easiest place on the planet to do business, followed by Singapore, Denmark, South Korea and Hong Kong. The US and the UK are ranked 6th and 7th on the list.

Among BRICS countries, Russia tops the list with 35th position, followed by China which has retained its ranking at the 78th place for the second consecutive year.

Ease of doing business index

The ease of doing business index is an index created by the World Bank Group.

Higher rankings (a low numerical value)indicate better, usually simpler, regulations for businesses and stronger protections of property rights. Empirical research funded by the World Bank to justify their work show that the economic growth impact of improving these regulations is strong.

VNR Compilation Highlights National SDG Progress and Challenges {Development Policies}

Based on the 43 Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) presented during the 2017 HLPF, the UN Secretariat has compiled countries’ initiatives to implement the SDGs and the progress they have made, along with challenges facing each government.

The VNRs are part of the follow-up and review process for the 2030 Agenda, and focus on sharing national-level implementation experiences.

High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development

  • The United Nations High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development or HLPF replaced the Commission on Sustainable Development on the 24 September 2013
  • It meets both under the General Assembly every four years and the ECOSOC in other years with technical, ministerial and high level segments. Its meetings are held in July.
  • It adopts negotiated declarations, reviews commitment and the progress of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
  • The HLPF was part of the agreement following the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development or Rio+20 with the aim to strengthen Sustainable Development governance at the United Nations

 United Nations Economic and Social Council

  • One of the six principal organs of the United Nations, responsible for coordinating the economic, social, and related work of 15 UN specialised agencies, their functional commissions and five regional commissions.
  • The ECOSOC has 54 members. It holds one four-week session each year in July, and since 1998, it has also held an annual meeting in April with finance ministers heading key committees of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fun

CSD: The United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) was established by the UN General Assembly in December 1992 to ensure effective follow-up of Earth Summit

Odisha to renovate Bezbaroa’s house {Art & Culture}

In news

The Odisha government has announced that it will renovate the house of the doyen of Assamese literature Lakhminath Bezbaroa at Sambalpur and turn it into a memorial.

One of the pioneers of modern Assamese literatureImage result for Bezbaroa house

  •  He was a great poet, writer, satirist, playwright and children’s literature writer.
  •   It is Lakshminath Bezbarua who wrote the state anthem of Assam – O Mur Apunar Dekh. He is best known in Assam as the Sahityarathi (meaning Charioteer of Literature in English) and Rasaraaj (King of humor).


Hotspots of rattan found in Western Ghats {Bio-diversity}

In news

Scientists have discovered that non-protected areas near the Agastyamalai Biosphere Reserve, Silent Valley-Mukurthi National Parks and Coorg-Wayanad in the Western Ghats are hotspots of rattan or cane (light, flexible climbing palms) species.

Image result for Rattans

Urgent conservation attention in the face of threats including habitat loss and excessive harvesting would be critical here.

What is rattan?

Rattans are spiny climbing palms used in making cane furniture and mats, an industry that is growing at US$4 billion trade per year.

Genomics were useful in phylogeny reconstruction of Calamodeae, and the molecular taxonomy of Calamus and related genera is an important research focus. Rattans are harvested from forests that require conservation efforts.

Phone App for cancer study  {Science and Technology}

In news

A new smartphone App, SmartIHC-Analyser, developed by researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur can now help in faster and more accurate evaluation of cancer after treatment.


The App analyses the expression of a protein marker (Ki-67) for determining an increase in cancer cells. The App, now available for Android phones, analyses microscopic images of stained cancer tissue and in less than a minute tells if there is progression or regression of cancer cells post treatment.

The smart phone is fitted to the eye-piece of the microscope using a specially designed 3D-printed holder to take microscopic images of the cancer cells.

Traditional method of cancer study

In the manual method, pathologists observe these colours using the naked eye and count the cells. This method is time-consuming and technician-dependent. The new App takes pictures and counts the differently stained cells and gives the proliferation index in less than a minute.

“The proliferation index tells us the rate at which the cells are dividing or how fast the tumour is growing during the progress of cancer and helps in deciding future therapy. In manual counting, pathologists observe only two to four different areas of the tissue and give a mean score.

Banaganapalle mangoes get GI tag {Socio- Economic}

A GI is primarily an agricultural, natural or a manufactured product (handicrafts and industrial goods) originating from a definite geographical territory.

  • The famous Banaganapalle mangoes of Andhra Pradesh and Tulaipanji rice of West Bengalare among the seven commodities that have been granted Geographical Indication (GI) this fiscal year by the Indian patent office.

GI Tag: Intellectual Property RightsImage result for Banaganapalle mango gi tag

  • Geographical Indications of Goods are defined as that aspect of industrial property which refer to the geographical indication referring to a country or to a place situated therein as being the country or place of origin of that product.
  • Typically, such a name conveys an assurance of quality and distinctiveness which is essentially attributable to the fact of its origin in that defined geographical locality, region or country.
  • Under Articles 1 (2) and 10 of the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property, geographical indications are covered as an element of IPR
  • They are also covered under Articles 22 to 24 of the Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) Agreement, which was part of the Agreements concluding the Uruguay Round of GATT negotiations.
  • India, as a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), enacted the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration & Protection) Act, 1999has come into force with effect from 15th September 2003.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email
1 Comment
  1. Reply
    Rupesh Singh Chauhan
    November 9, 2017 at 9:51 am

    Mast hh

    Leave a reply

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    Current Affairs ONLY
    Register New Account
    Reset Password