05.06.18 APSC (Assam) Current Affairs



  • McLeod to sell 8 Assam estates to MKSEL


  • McLeod Russel, the world’s largest private bulk tea producer, has inked an MoU with city-based M K Shah Exports (MKSEL) on Tuesday to sell off eight of their 48 tea estates in Assam for Rs 331 crore. A source close to the development said the Williamson Magor group firm would like to sell a few more gardens to another tea producer to further reduce its debt by this fiscal.


  • “The company has decided to dispose of eight tea estates — Beesakopie, Raidang, Daimukhia, Samdang, Baghjan, Bordubi, Koomsong and Phillobari — subject to necessary approvals and due diligence by the proposed buyer…,” the tea producer wrote to the stock exchanges in a filing. The eight gardens which fall in Assam’s Doom Dooma district produce 10.5 million kg (mkg) of tea annually.


  • McLeod Russel, which produces 118 million kg tea from its 65 gardens across India, Vietnam and Africa, currently has debts of about Rs 1,000 crore. Its chief financial officer Kamal Baheti told TOI: “The proposed sale will partially reduce our debt and balance our domestic (now 57mkg), overseas outputs (30mkg) and small tea growers (STG) (20mkg) intake. In future, if it deems fit to sell off some more gardens, we may go for it. The current saleoff is estimated to earn us Rs 340/kg.”


  • The eight gardens had contributed 12.33% to the McLeod Russel’s total turnover in 2017-18 at Rs 192.76 crore. McLeod’s total turnover in the last fiscal was at Rs 1,919.2 crore and its domestic production was 67 mkg. With the latest move, the company will cut its domestic production to around 57 mkg and reduce the burden of alternate years of “negative cycle” in domestic output.


  • Currently, MKSEL manufactures 7.5 mkg of tea annually from its existing tea estates in Assam. According to a release, the grant area at McLeod’s eight plantations is 9,350 hectares and the area under tea is 5,700 hectares, where 11,000-strong combined workforce is employed. Post-acquisition, the combined entity shall manufacture 18 mkg tea annually from 14 estates and have an employee strength of 17,000. 



    • World Environment Day: 5 June


    • World Environment Day (WED) occurs on the 5th of June every year, and is the United Nation’s principal vehicle for encouraging awareness and action for the protection of our environment.


    • First held in 1974, it has been a flagship campaign for raising awareness on emerging environmental issues from marine pollution, human overpopulation, and global warming, to sustainable consumption and wildlife crime.


    • This year’s theme is ‘Beat Plastic Pollution’.


    • New Delhi is the host city of this year’s World Environment Day.



    • Bengaluru to host UN Global Compact Network India convention


    • Global Compact Network India (GCNI), a local network of the United Nations Global Compact in New York, is holding its 13th National Convention in Bengaluru.


    • This year, the GCNI convention is of a greater significance as it is coinciding with the UN India Business Forum being hosted on June 7.


    • The theme of the event is ‘Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).



    • Japanese passport ranked ‘most powerful’ in world



    • India has bagged the 76th position in a list of the world’s most powerful passports, granting its holders visa-free access to 59 countries.


    • The results are part of citizenship planning firm Henley and Partners’ annual passport index, which ranks passports based on the number of countries a holder can go to without a visa or the number of countries a holder can go to where they can obtain a visa.


    • As per the annual passport index, Japan has been deemed the world’s most powerful passport, with access to 189 countries.


    • Singapore and Germany, on the other hand, have secured the second place with both having access to 188 countries.


    • Asia’s 1st  ‘Blue Flag’ Beaches To Be Developed in India


    • 13 Indian beaches will soon get the Blue Flag certification. These beaches of Odisha, Maharashtra and other coastal states will be the first in not just India, but in Asia, to get the Blue Flag certification.


    • To get Blue Flag standards, a beach has to strictly comply with 33 environment and tourism related conditions.


    • The Indian beaches are being developed according to the Blue Flag certification standards by the Society for Integrated Coastal Management (SICOM), an environment ministry’s body working for the management of coastal areas.






    ·        Krishi Kalyan Abhiyan being implemented in 25 villages in each of the 111 Aspirational Districts


    • The Ministry of Agriculture and farmers’ welfare in line with the Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of doubling farmers’ income by 2022 has launched the Krishi kalyan Abhiyaan from1st June, 2018 till 31st July, 2018 so as to aid, assist and advice farmerss on how to improve their farming techniques and raise their incomes.


    • The Krishi kalyan Abhiyaan will be undertaken in 25 Villages with more than 1000 population each in Aspirational Districts identified in consultation with Ministry of Rural Development as per directions of NITI Ayog.


    • In districts where number of villages (with more than 1000 population) is less than 25, all villages will be covered.


    • Government launches ‘JANAUSHADHI SUVIDHA’ – Oxo-biodegradable Sanitary Napkin


    • Union Minister of State for Chemicals & Fertilizers, Road Transport & Highways, Shipping, Shri Mansukh L. Mandaviya, launched the ‘JANAUSHADHI SUVIDHA’, the Oxo-biodegradable Sanitary Napkin, under the Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana (PMBJP).


    • The affordable sanitary napkins will now become available at over 3600 Janaushadhi Kendras functional in 33 States/UTs across India, as promised by Union Minister, Chemical & Fertilizers and Parliamentary Affairs, Shri Ananthkumar on March 8, 2018 (World Women’s day).


    • India’s forest cover stood at 21.34 percent in 2015


    • According to the latest data from the Indian Forest Survey, 21.34 percent of the country’s total land area is forest covered. This was 20.05 percent in 2009.


    • According to the report, Mizoram with 89 per forest area is the most forested state in the country. After this, Lakshadweep with 84.56 per cent, Andaman Nicobar Islands with 82 per cent and Arunachal Pradesh with 80 per cent forest area occupied second, third and fourth places respectively.


    • According to the report, 15 states of the country have more than 33 per cent of the forest area. Assam is at the bottom with 35 percent forest area among these 15 states.


    • According to the report, the level of intensive forest area in the total area of ​​the country is 9.59 percent.


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