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2019-02-01 12:48:35

Current Affairs January 2019

Current Affairs January 2019

January Current Affairs 2019

Here Defence Guru Share Current Affairs January 2019 have covered all important daily basis current affairs events . It will be a complete package for aspirants who are appearing for all Competitive Exam.

Current Affairs Capsule Jan 2019

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1. Vice Admiral G Ashok Kumar assumes charge as Vice Chief of Naval Staff

Vice Admiral G Ashok Kumar assumed charge as Vice Chief of the Naval Staff. He served as the Navigating Officer of Indian Naval Ships Beas, Nilgiri, Ranvir and Vikrant. An alumnus of Sainik School, Amaravathi Nagar and National Defence Academy, Khadakvasla, Pune, he was commissioned into the Executive Branch of the Indian Navy on 01 Jul 1982.

Points to Remember

  • The heads of the three services of Indian Armed Forces are:
  • Chief of the Army Staff : General Bipin Rawat
  • Chief of the Naval Staff : Admiral Sunil Lanba
  • Chief of the Air Staff : Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa

2.IPS Kumar Rajesh Chandra appointed as Director-General of SSB

A 1985 batch IPS officer, Kumar Rajesh Chandra has been appointed as the Director General of the (DG) Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB). “The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has approved the appointment of Shri Kumar Rajesh Chandra, IPS, presently working as DG, BCAS to the post of DG, SSB from the date of joining of the post and upto 31.12.2021 Bihar cadre IPS, Rajesh Chandra will succeed S.S. Deswal.

Sashastra Seema Bal, in English the Armed Border Force, is one of India's Central Armed Police Forces. It is currently under the administrative control of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. Prior to 2001, the force was known as the Special Service Bureau.

3. India born Gita Gopinath joins IMF as Chief Economist

Gita Gopinath, a noted Harvard professor of economics and financial advisor to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, took charge as chief economist at the International Monetary Fund. Born in Kolkata and raised in Mysuru, Gita Gopinath was officially appointed on October 1, 2018 as Economic Counsellor and Director of the IMF’s Research Department by IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde. She took over her new position at the IMF after the retirement of Maurice Obstfeld on December 31. She’s the 11th chief economist for the IMF and the first woman to occupy the position.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an international organization headquartered in Washington, D.C., consisting of "189 countries working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world.

 

4. Suman Kumari becomes Pakistan’s first Hindu woman judge

Suman Kumari has become the first Hindu woman in Pakistan to be appointed as a civil judge. Suman, who hails from Qambar-Shahdadkot, will serve in her native district. The first judge from the Hindu community was Justice Rana Bhagwandas, who served as the acting chief justice for brief periods between 2005 and 2007. Hindus make up nearly 2 per cent of Pakistan’s total population and Hinduism remains the second largest religion in Pakistan after Islam.

5. Sheikh Hasina to take oath as Bangladesh PM

Awami League President Sheikh Hasina to take oath as Prime Minister of Bangladesh for the third consecutive term. A 47-member Council of Ministers including 31 new faces, will also be sworn in. President Mohammad Abdul Hamid will administer the oath of office to the Ministers at Bangabhaban. Awami League and its allies secured 288 seats out of elections held for 299-member Parliament recently. This will be the fourth government under the seventy-one-year-old leader, and third in a row, since January 2009. Earlier she was the Prime Minister from 1996 to 2001.

Bangladesh, to the east of India on the Bay of Bengal, is a South Asian country marked by lush greenery and many waterways. Its Padma (Ganges), Meghna and Jamuna rivers create fertile plains, and travel by boat is common. On the southern coast, the Sundarbans, an enormous mangrove forest shared with Eastern India, is home to the royal Bengal tiger.

6. Justice AK Sikri nominated as Executive Chairman of NALSA

President Ram Nath Kovind has nominated Justice AK Sikri as Executive Chairman of National Legal Services Authority (NALSA). He will be replacing Justice Madan B Lokur. The National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) has been constituted under the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 to provide free Legal Services to the weaker sections of the society.

NALSA was brought into existence to fulfil the provisions under the Article 39A of the constitution which provides for free legal aid to the poor and weaker sections of the society, to promote justice on the basis of equal opportunity. NALSA organises Lok Adalats for amicable settlement of disputes. The Chief Justice of India is the Patron-in-Chief and the senior most Judge of the Supreme Court of India is the Executive Chairman of the Authority.

 

7. Brazil's Bolsonaro takes oath as President

Jair Bolsonaro was sworn in as Brazil's President in a ceremony at Brazil's National Congress Building. Bolsonaro plans to realign Brazil internationally, moving away from developing nation allies and closer to the policies of Western leaders, particularly U.S. President Donald Trump, who sent Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to his inauguration. As a clear sign of that diplomatic shift, Bolsonaro plans to move the Brazilian embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, breaking with Brazil's traditional support for a two-state solution to the Palestinian issue.

8. Vinod Kumar Yadav appointed as Railway Board Chairman

General Manager of South Central Railway, Vinod Kumar Yadav, has been appointed as Chairman of Railway Board and ex-officio Principal Secretary to Government of India. Commencing his career on Indian Railways as Assistant Electrical Engineer in February 1982, he held several important executive and managerial positions in Indian Railways. A post graduate in Business Administration (Technology Management) and a Bachelors Degree in Electrical Engineering, Yadav holds immense experience in the fields of Project Management.

 

9. Justice T B N Radhakrishnan sworn in as Chief Justice of Telangana HC

The Telangana High Court has come into being with justices taking oath. Justice T B N Radhakrishnan was sworn in as the Chief Justice of the Telangana High Court. Telangana and Andhra Pradesh Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan administered oath of office to him.

The Supreme Court had directed the Centre to bifurcate the existing high court in Hyderabad and by a Central notification, the bifurcation process has been completed a few days ago facilitating the two high courts to function in their respective states. As per the notification, 12 judges, over 360 district and civil judges have been allotted to the new Telangana state. Andhra Pradesh High Court got over 500 district and civil judges as the two high courts began functioning as separate entities onwards.

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10. 24 honoured with Sahitya Akademi Award

  1. Hindi writer Chitra Mudgal, Dogri writer Inderjeet Kesar, Kannada writer KG Nagarajappa and Kashmiri story writer Mushtaq Ahmad Mushtaq were among 24 writers, who were honoured with the Sahitya Akademi Award 2018. President of the Sahitya Akademi Chandrasekhar Kambar presented these awards at a function in New Delhi. The awards were given for 24 different languages. The award was given to Chitra Mudgal for her book 'post box no 203 Nalla Sopara', which was based on the life of a transgender.

Every year since its inception in 1954, the Sahitya Akademi Award prizes to the most outstanding books of literary merit published in any of the major Indian languages recognised by the Akademi. The awardee gets an amount of Rs.1,00,000. The first Awards were given in 1955.

 

11. India bags the Award of Excellence for ‘Best in Show’ at New York Times Travel Show 2019

India received the Award of Excellence for ‘Best in Show’ at the recently concluded New York Times Travel Show 2019. It is the largest travel show in North America, held from 25th – 27th January in New York, USA. The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India participated as the ‘ Presenting Partner’ in the New York Times Travel Show (NYTTS 2019) organised at Jacob K Javits Centre, New York. India was honoured during the Closing Bell Ceremony at the New York Stock Exchange.

12. ICAR's 'Kisan Gandhi' tableau wins first prize at R-Day parade

The ICAR tableau in the Republic Day Parade has won the first prize for its Kisan Gandhi theme. The Indian Council of Agricultural Research tableau with the theme "Mishrit Kheti, Khushiyon Ki Kheti" portrayed Gandhi with goats and a cow and Kasturba engaged with charkha and caring animals. The tableau showcased a view from Bapu Kuti at Wardha Ashram. Tripura bagged the first prize for the state tableau while tableau from Jammu and Kashmir was adjudged the second and Punjab won the third prize.

13. NRL receives 'Best Miniratna PSU' award

Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) has been awarded the best miniratna PSU in strategic performance. The award, comprising of a trophy, was presented to NRL MD S K Barua by Member of Parliament Manoj Tiwari and Poonam Dhillon at an award function held in New Delhi. The awards are given out in recognition of the efforts of Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) that have played a key role in the country’s growth.

The Numaligarh Refinery is located at Morangi, Golaghat district, Assam in India is a refinery owned by Numaligarh Refinery Limited. It is a joint venture between Bharat Petroleum, Oil India and Govt of Assam.

14. Padma Awards 2019 announced

President Ram Nath Kovind conferred the Padma Awards, one of the highest civilian awards of the category. The awards were conferred in three categories, namely, Padma Vibhushan, Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri.The list, which was approved by the President, comprises of four Padma Vibhushan, 14 Padma Bhushan and 94 Padma Shri awardees.

Recipients of Padma Vibhushan awards are as follows:

  • Ms. Teejan Bai
  • Shri Ismail Omar Guelleh
  • Shri Anilkumar Manibhai Naik
  • Shri Balwant Moreshwar Purandare

15. Pranab Mukherjee, Nanaji Deshmukh, Bhupen Hazarika to be conferred with Bharat Ratna

Social activist Nanaji Deshmukh, singer Bhupen Hazarika and former President Pranab Mukherjee will be conferred with country's highest civilian honour Bharat Ratna. Nanaji Deshmukh and Bhupen Hazarika will be awarded with the honour posthumously. Bharat Ratna is the highest civilian award of India. The Bharat Ratna awardee receives a Sanad (certificate) signed by the President of India and a medallion in the form of a Peepal leaf.

16. Short film 'Period. End of Sentence' gets Oscars nomination

"Period. End of Sentence", an India set film on the taboos around menstruation and featuring the real 'Pad Man', has made it to the Oscar nomination. The film has made it to the top five nominees of the Documentary Short Subject category. The film is about a women in India fighting against the deeply rooted stigma of menstruation. The film is produced by Guneet Monga and is co-produced by Monga's Sikhya Entertainment.

17. Government institutes Subhash Chandra Bose Aapda Prabandhan Puraskar

The government has instituted an annual award titled Subhash Chandra Bose Aapda Prabandhan Puraskar. It will be announced every year on 23rd January, the birth anniversary of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.The Award carries a certificate and a cash prize of 51 lakh rupees. This year, 8th Battalion of National Disaster Response Force located at Ghaziabad has been selected for the Award for its commendable work in disaster management. The award has been instituted to acknowledge the contribution and selfless service of organisations and individuals to humanity in the aftermath of any disaster.

 

18. Noted Gujarati poet Sitanshu Yashashchandra awarded Saraswati Samman 2017

Noted Gujarati poet Sitanshu Yashashchandra has been awarded Saraswati Samman,2017. He received the honour for his poetry collection in Gujarati named “Vakhar”. The award comprises of a citation and a plaque apart from award money of 15 lakh rupees.

This is the 27th edition of the prestigious award instituted by K.K.Birla foundation given every year to an outstanding work of an Indian citizen published during the last 10 years in any of the languages mentioned in Schedule 8 of the constitution.

19. Ranjani Murali wins 'Woman's Voice Award’

US-based Indian poet Ranjani Murali received the 'Woman's Voice Award' at the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival (AKLF). Murali received the award the last day of the literary festival. The objective of the award is to recognise and encourage creative writing by women in India.

The award carries a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh apart from a citation. Murali's first book of poems 'Blind Screens' was published in July 2017.

20. BJP MP Anurag Thakur honoured with Sansad Ratna Award

Anurag Thakur, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and party's chief whip in the Lok Sabha, was bestowed with Sansad Ratna Award for distinguished performance as a parliamentarian. He is the first MP from the BJP, besides being the only Member of Parliament from north India, to have been awarded the Jury Committee Special Award.

The Sansad Ratna Awards was set up in 2010 upon the suggestion of former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.

21. President conferred Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2019

The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind confered the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2019 at Rashtrapati Bhawan. The awards were given to 26 shortlisted awardees. The names of awardees were finalized by the National Selection Committee under the Chairpersonship of WCD Minister, Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi. These awards will be given in two main categories. Bravery Awards have also been added to these awards now. The categories are as follows:

Bal Shakti Puraskar shall be given in the following fields:

  • Innovation
  • Social Service
  • Scholastic
  • Sports
  • Art & Culture
  • Bravery

The award carries a medal, a cash prize of Rs. 1,00,000/-, book vouchers worth Rs. 10,000/-, a certificate and a citation.

Bal Kalyan Puraskar shall be given in the following categories:-

a. Individual

b. Institution

  • The award for individual consists of a cash prize of Rs. 1, 00,000/- (one lakh), a medal, a citation and a certificate to each awardee. The award for institution consists of a prize of Rs. 5,00,000/- each and a medal, a citation and a certificate.

22. Vice President of India Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu Presents Chhatra Vishwakarma Awards and Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) Awards

The Vice President of India Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu presented the 2nd Chhatra Vishwakarma Awards to students and their mentors He also presented Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) Awards to institutions at an event organized by All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) at New Delhi.

The Chhatra Vishwakarma Awards are inspired by the spirit of engineering and creation patronized by Lord Vishwakarma. Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) was launched in October 2014 with the aim to translate the comprehensive vision of Mahatma Gandhi of an ideal Indian village. Under the scheme, Member of Parliament adopted Gram Panchayats for its holistic progress. AICTE has encouraged institutes located in proximity of villages which can be supported under the scheme. These institutes have been working hard to develop the adopted villages.

23. Bharat Ratna CNR Rao chosen for Sheikh Saud International Prize for Materials

Eminent scientist and recipient of Bharat Ratna C N R Rao has been chosen for the first Sheikh Saud International Prize for Materials Research by the Centre for Advanced Materials of the United Arab Emirates. Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research said in a statement that the prize committee unanimously decided to award this to Professor Rao.

The award involves a plaque, a medal and a cash prize of 1 lakh US Dollar. The award will be presented to Professor Rao during the International Workshop on Advanced Materials at Ras Al Khaimain UAE on February 25.

24. Vinesh Phogat becomes first Indian athlete to be nominated in Laureus World Comeback of Year Award

Indian female wrestler Vinesh Phogat has become the first Indian athlete to receive a nomination in the prestigious Laureus World Comeback of the Year Award. She has been nominated alongside US Tour Championship winner Tiger Woods, who won his first tournament in five years. The Awards will be presented in Monaco on the 18th of next month.

Monaco is a tiny independent city-state on France’s Mediterranean coastline.The 24-year-old Vinesh from Haryana made a sensational comeback after battling a long injury lay-off to win a gold medal at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games and Jakarta Asian Game.

 

25. Gandhi Peace Prize for 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 announced

The Gandhi Peace Prize for the years 2015,2016,2017 and 2018 has been conferred on the following Vivekananda Kendra, Kanyakumari for the year 2015 for their contribution in Rural Development, Education, Development of natural resources. For 2016 jointly to AkshayaPatra Foundation for its contribution in providing mid-day meals to millions of children across India and Sulabh International for its contribution in improving the condition of sanitation in India and emancipation of manual scavengers. EkalAbhiyan Trust for the year 2017 for their contribution in providing Education for Rural and Tribal Children in remote areas pan India, Rural Empowerment, Gender and Social Equality. Shri YoheiSasakawa for the year 2018 for his contribution in Leprosy Eradication in India and across the world.

The annual award was instituted by the Government of India in 1995 during the commemoration of 125th Birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. The award carries an amount of Rs 1Crore, a Citation in a scroll, a plaque as well as an exquisite traditional handicraft/handloom item.

 

26. Namita Gokhale awarded Sushila Devi Literature Award

Renowned writer Namita Gokhale was awarded Sushila Devi Literature Award for her work “Things to Leave Behind”. She was honoured in the ‘Best Book of Fiction Written by a Woman Author’ category at the inaugural edition of Bhopal Literature and Art Festival.

Sushila Devi Literature Award is constituted by Ratanlal Foundation. The award recognises the Best Book of Fiction Written by a woman author. It is a newly constituted award and comes with a cash prize of Rs 2 lakh. Namita Gokhale is an Indian writer, publisher and festival director who has authored sixteen books including nine works of fiction.

Namita Gokhale is a founder-director of the ‘Jaipur Literature Festival’ along with William Dalrymple. She has also served as member-secretary of Indian Literature Abroad (ILA), an initiative by the Ministry of Culture.

27. First-ever Philip Kotler Presidential award presented to PM Modi

The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi received the first-ever Philip Kotler Presidential award, at 7 Lok Kalyan Marg, in New Delhi. The Award focuses on the triple bottom-line of People, Profit and Planet. It will be offered annually to the leader of a Nation. 

Prof. Philip Kotler is a world renowned Professor of Marketing at Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management. Owing to his ill-health, he deputed Dr. Jagdish Sheth of EMORY University, Georgia, USA, to confer the award.

 

28. Exhibitor of the Year Award for DRDO at 106th Indian Science Congress

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) pavilion received ‘Exhibitor of the Year Award’ at 106th Indian Science Congress held at Lovely Professional University (LPU), Phagwara, Punjab.

The DRDO Pavillion at the mega science expo was inaugurated on January 03, 2019 byGovernor of Punjab Shri VP Singh Badnore and Union Science and Technology MinisterDr Harsh Vardhan. They took keen interest in DRDO products and technologies displayed.

DRDO was formed in 1958 from the amalgamation of the then already functioning Technical Development Establishment (TDEs) of the Indian Army and the Directorate of Technical Development & Production (DTDP) with the Defence Science Organisation (DSO).

 

29. Smt. Maneka Sanjay Gandhi to confer National Awards to Anganwadi Workers under ICDS Scheme

Union Minister for Women & Child Development, Smt. Maneka Sanjay Gandhi will confer National Awards to 97 Anganwadi Workers(AWWs) for Exceptional Achievements for the year 2017-18, on the 07th of January 2018, in New Delhi.

Government of India formulated a scheme for awarding Anganwadi Workers (AWWs) at the National and State Levels in the year 2000-2001. The award is given to motivate the AWWs and recognise their exemplary service in the field of child development and related areas under the ICDS Scheme. The awards are given annually. From this year, the cash prize of National Level has been increased from Rs. 25,000 to Rs. 50,000.

The nominations received from the States/UTs are screened and recommended by a Screening Committee headed by Secretary, MWCD. The selection of awardees is made by the Selection Committee headed by Hon’ble Minister for Women & Child Development. The Award at the National Level comprises of a cash prize of Rs. 50,000 and a citation. State Level award comprises of a cash prize of Rs. 10,000 and a citation.

30. Veterans Asha Parekh, Farooque Shaikh will be honoured by Bimal Roy Memorial and Film Society

Veterans Asha Parekh and Farooque Shaikh will be honoured by the Bimal Roy Memorial and Film Society to commemorate the 52nd death anniversary of the renowned filmmaker.

The organisation was instituted 22 years ago in memory of the late filmmaker. Its aim is to reward unsung heroes of the film industry. A special function will be held on January 8. Awards will also be presented to directors Ananth Mahadevan and Amit Rai along with their actors Paresh Rawal and Jackie Shroff for making socially relevant films. Veteran artists Sulochana Latkar, Kamini Kaushal and Farida Jalal will attend the function.

31. National Entrepreneurship Awards 2018 presented to India’s Most Promising Entrepreneurs

National Entrepreneurship Awards 2018, aimed at recognizing and honoring outstanding young first-generation entrepreneurs and those who have contributed immensely in building the entrepreneurship ecosystem, were presented here today by the Minister of Commerce and Industry & Civil Aviation Shri Suresh Prabhu and the Minister of state for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Shri Ananthkumar Hegde. In this third edition of National Entrepreneurship Awards, this year, a total of 43 awards were presented, including 39awards for Young Entrepreneurs in different sectors and 4awards for Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Builders. The awards are classified into three investment categories- below Rs 1 Lakh, between Rs 1 Lakh to10 Lakhs and betweenRs10 Lakhs to Rs1 Crore- covering small to big first-generation entrepreneurs below the age of 40 years.

 

 

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32. Bollywood actor Kader Khan passes

Kader Khan was an Afghan-born Indian-Canadian film actor, screenwriter, comedian, and director. As an actor, he appeared in over 300 films after his debut film in the 1973 film Daag, starring Rajesh Khanna, in which he acted as a prosecuting attorney.

Born on 22 October, 1937 , the actor made his debut in 1973 with Rajesh Khanna's 'Daag', and went on to act in over 300 films. He also wrote dialogues for over 250 movies. As a screenwriter, Khan frequently collaborated with Manmohan Desai and Prakash Mehra. Khan went from playing the role of a villain in films like 'Farz Aur Kanoon', 'Jeeo Aur Jeene Do', 'Naya Kadam' and 'Qaidi' to winning hearts with his comic timing in 'Hum', 'Bol Radha Bol', 'Aunty No. 1', among others.

 

33. Former Defence Minister George Fernandes passes away

Former Defence Minister and Anti-Emergency Crusader George Fernandes passed away. George Fernandes was a senior Janata Dal leader before he founded the Samata Party. He was elected to the Lok Sabha 9 times and once to the Rajya Sabha. He also served as Union Minister for Railways, Communications and Industry.

He served as the Defence Minister of India in both the second and third National Democratic Alliance governments (1998–2004). During his tenure as the defence minister, the Kargil war over Kashmir broke out between India and Pakistan in 1999.

 

34. Famous Hindi writer Krishna Sobti passes away

Famous Hindi writer and essayist, Krishna Sobti passed away. She was 94. She had won the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1980 for her novel Zindaginama. She was awarded the Jnanpith in 2017 for her contribution to Indian literature. Some of her celebrated works include Daar Se Bichhudi, Mitro Marjani, Zindaginama, Dil-o-Danish etc.

35. 1956 Olympics gold medallist Raghbir Bhola passes away

Former India hockey player Raghbir Singh Bhola, a two-time Olympic medallist, has passed away. He represented India in the 1956 Melbourne Olympics and won a gold medal. In 1960 Rome Olympics he won a silver medal for the country. He successfully captained the Indian Air Force hockey and Services team from 1954-60 and won the Inter Services Hockey Championship three times and the National Hockey Championship on two occasions.

36. Siddaganga Mutt head Shivakumara Swamy passes away

Dr. Shivakumara Swami, the 111-year-old head of the Siddaganga Mutt, passed away. He was also fondly called Nadedaduva Devaru or 'the Walking God' by many. in 2007, the then Karnataka government had conferred the Karnataka Ratna, the highest civilian award in the state In 2015, the Government of India awarded him the Padma Bhushan.

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37. ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2020 fixtures announced by ICC

The International Cricket Council (ICC) announced fixtures for the ICC T20 World Cup 2020 to be held in Australia. This edition marks the first occasion when the men and women tournaments will be held as standalone events in the same year and in the same country.

The women's T20 World Cup will take place from February 21 to March 8 next year, culminating with the final on International Women’s Day. The men's event will take place later in the year from October 18 to November 15. The 12th edition of the Cricket World Cup i.e ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 is scheduled to be hosted by England and Wales from 30 May to 14 July 2019.

38. ICC suspends Ambati Rayudu from bowling in International Cricket

Ambati Rayudu has been suspended from bowling in International Cricket by the International Cricket Council (ICC). He has been banned after having found his bowling action to be illegal. Rayudu had been reported for suspect bowling action during the first of the three-match ODI series between India and Australia in Sydney, which India won 2-1. ICC said that the suspension will remain in place until he is tested and can demonstrate he is able to bowl with a legal action.

39. Saina Nehwal wins Indonesia Masters 2019

Ace shuttler Saina Nehwal won her first Indonesia Masters title after three-time world champion Carolina Marin limped out of the final due to a leg injury. Marin was leading 10-4 in the first game at Jakarta when she developed an injury in the knee. Saina had won a gold medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, a bronze at the Asian Games.

40. Djokovic beats Nadal to win his seventh Australian Open title

Novak Djokovic defeated Rafael Nadal to win his 7th Australian Open Men's Singles title at Melbourn. The resurgent world No.1 outplayed the second-ranked Nadal 6-3, 6-2, 6-3 in a largely one-sided match. In Women's Singles, Japan's Naomi Osaka clinched her maiden Australian Open Grand Slam Singles title in Melbourne . Osaka became the first Asian player to achieve the world number one ranking.

41. Kartik Sharma wins New South Wales men's Amateur Golf Championship

India's Kartik Sharma won the New South Wales men's Amateur Golf Championship in Australia. Kartik notched up a magnificent win over Australia's Nathan Barberie in the scheduled 36-hole final to emerge as champion. He had been selected to represent Indian Golf Union for three events in Australia. Kartik had also won the Indian golf union western India amateur golf championship 2018.

42. Naomi Osaka wins Australian Open Grand Slam Singles title

Japan's Naomi Osaka won her maiden Australian Open Grand Slam Singles title at Melbourne. She became the first Asian player to achieve the world number one ranking. The 21-year-old also became the youngest women’s world number one since Dane Caroline Wozniacki, who was 20 when she topped the rankings in 2010. In the Final, Osaka defeated Czech Petra Kvitova.

43. Botha announces retirement from all forms of Cricket

Former South Africa all-rounder Johan Botha has announced his immediate retirement from all forms of Cricket. Botha played for South Africa in five test matches, 78 one-day internationals and 40 T20 Internationals from 2005 to 2012. Botha captained the Proteas in 10 ODIs and took the team to the No. 1 ranking after they defeated Australia 4-1 in Australia in 2009.

Johan Botha is a former South Africancricketer who played for the South African national team between 2005 and 2012. He moved to Australia in 2012 to play in that country's domestic leagues, and in 2016 became an Australian citizen.

44. Shami becomes fastest Indian to reach 100 ODI wickets

Mohammed Shami became the fastest Indian to claim 100 wickets in One-day Internationals. This was his 56th game in the 50-over format. Shami' wicket number 100 was New Zealand opener Martin Guptill. Before Shami, Irfan Pathan reached the 100-wicket mark in 59 ODIs.

45. Virat Kohli creates history, becomes first player ever to win Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy for ICC Cricketer of the Year

Virat Kohli created history by becoming the first player in history to win the Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy for ICC Cricketer of the Year. Kohli was also named captain of ICC's Test and ODI teams of 2018 for a fabulous run in international cricket. South African cricketer Kagiso Rabada finished second both for the overall category and the one for Test players. Afghan cricketer Rashid Khan was the runner-up for the ODI award. Kohli also ended the year at No. 1 in both the rankings for Tests and ODIs.

Rishabh Pant, who was named the Emerging Cricketer of the Year. Sri Lanka's Kumar Dharmasena was named the Umpire of the Year. New Zealand cricketer Kane Williamson won the Spirit of Cricket award

46. Ankita Raina wins ITF's tournament in Singapore

India's Ankita Raina has won the International Tennis Federation's 25,000-dollar Women's tournament in Singapore. Ankita defeated top seed and world number 122 Arantxa Rus of the Netherlands, 6-3, 6-2. She toppled four seeded players in the tournament to win her first title of the season and eighth overall.

The International Tennis Federation is the governing body of world tennis, wheelchair tennis, and beach tennis. It was founded in 1913 as the International Lawn Tennis Federation by twelve national associations, and as of 2016, is affiliated with 211 national tennis associations and six regional associations. It is headquartered in London.

47. Khelo India Youth Games

The Khelo India Youth Games concluded in Pune with the hosts Maharashtra walking away with the overall trophy. They amassed 228 medals, comprising 85 gold, 62 silver and 81 bronze. Haryana, were second with 62 gold, 56 silver and 60 bronze for a total of 178 medals, while Delhi were third with 48 gold, 37 silver and 51 bronze for a total of 136 medals.

Manush Shah of Gujarat emerged the singles champion in Under-21 table tennis, while Saubhi Patwari of West Bengal won the Girls Under-21 singles.

48. Dhoni's unbeaten 87 guides India to a historic ODI series win in Australia

Mahendra Singh Dhoni struck an unbeaten 87 to guide India to a historic ODI bilateral series win against Australia. Visitors beat the hosts by seven wickets in the decisive third match in Melbourne. Dhoni and Kedar Jadhav who made 61, shared an unbeaten 121-run stand for the fourth wicket.

India overhauled the tricky 231-run target on a slow wicket with four balls to spare. India made 234 runs. Dhoni was declared Man of the Series and Chahal Man of the Match. Before this, India had become first team from the sub-continent to win a Test series. It is the first time India remained unbeaten on Australian soil in all three formats.

49. Khelo India: Srihari Nataraj bags 7 Gold medals

Karnataka swimmer Srihari Nataraj has emerged as the most prolific gold medal winner at the Khelo India Youth Games. He has won 7 Gold medals. With SP Likith, picking five, the Karnataka duo were the most decorated gold medalists of the Games.

In Shooting, Patiala-based Sartaj Singh defeated National Junior Champion Aishwarya Pratap Singh Tomar of Madhya Pradesh and won the gold medal in the 50-metres rifle-3 position event. In the Under-21 Boys hockey played in Mumbai, Odisha were crowned as champions. Maharashtra continues to be way ahead in the medals tally. The hosts have, so far, bagged a total of 177 medals - 64 Gold, 51 Silver and 62 Bronze.

 

50. Abhinav Shaw becomes youngest gold medallist in shooting

At the Khelo India Youth Games in Pune, ten year old Abhinav Shaw became the youngest gold medallist in shooting. He teamed up with Mehuli Ghosh to help West Bengal win the 10m air rifle mixed team event. Delhi's Devanshi Rana bagged gold in Under-21 girls 25m pistol event.

Maharashtra once again dominated the gymnastics arena at the Games to wrap up the Under-21 category with a whopping nine medals on the last day of gymnastics events. With 18 medals comprising nine gold, six silver and three bronze in gymnastics, Maharashtra were also crowned champions.

51. Bengaluru Raptors win Premier Badminton League title

Bengaluru Raptors have won their first ever Premier Badminton League title. In the title clash played at Bengaluru, Bengaluru edged out Mumbai Rockets, with a 4-3 win. Star player Kidambi Srikanth, Vu Ji Trang and the Men's Doubles pair of Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Satiawan won their matches for Bengaluru guiding them to victory.

52. Dhoni joins elite list of Indian cricketers to score ten thousand runs

The seasoned Mahendra Singh Dhoni became the fifth player to score ten thousand runs for India in One-day International Cricket, adding another feather to his illustrious cap. Dhoni thus joined an elite list of Indian cricketers who had previously achieved the feat, which include Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid and Virat Kohli.

53. Virat Kohli, Ravi Shastri receive honorary membership of Sydney Cricket Ground

India skipper Virat Kohli and coach Ravi Shastri received the honorary membership of the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) for their contribution to the sport of cricket.Congratulating India for their Test series win on Australian soil, SCG Chairman Tony Shepherd expressed happiness that the world's largest cricketing nation India was putting its focus firmly on Test cricket.

He said this will reinforce the pre-eminence of Tests in global cricketing landscape. The only other international cricketers to be granted the honorary membership of the SCG are Sachin Tendulkar and Brain Lara of the West Indies.

54. IWF president named as Chef de Mission for Tokyo Olympics

President of the Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWF), Birendra Prasad Baishya, has been named Chef de Mission for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. "It is for the first time that the sport of weightlifting has been accorded with honour of Chef de Mission for the Olympic Games". Baishya is also one of the IOA Vice Presidents besides holding several other positions like Executive Board Member - International Weightlifting Federation, Vice President of Asian Weightlifting Federation and Vice President of Commonwealth Weightlifting Federation.

The Olympic Games are an international celebration of sport held once every four years. The Olympic Games are divided into Summer and Winter editions. The Paralympics are a parallel edition of the Olympic Games for athletes with an impairment. The Paralympic Games are also held once every four years and take place in the same city shortly after each edition of the Olympic Games.

55. Maharashtra to host 2nd edition of Khelo India Youth Games

Maharashtra is all set to host the second edition of Khelo India Youth Games which will officially begin on 09 January in Pune. More than 9000 players from different states will participate in 18 different games at Khelo India Youth Games. It has already been announced that Youth Olympic Gold Medallist in shooting Manu Bhaker and Saurabh Chaudhari, as well as weight lifter Jeremy Lalrinnunga will be among the cream of India’s youth sporting talent competing at these games.

Khelo India will be inaugurated in presence of Union Minister for sports Col. Rajyavardhan Tathore. It was introduced by Ministry of Sports and Youth affairs to revive sports culture in India at grass-root level. Its objective is to build strong framework for all sports played in our country and establish India as great sporting nation.

56. Head Constable Rani wins gold medal in Senior National's Judo C'Ship

Lady head constable Rani of 5th Indian Reserve Battalion of Himachal Pradesh Police won a Gold medal in the Senior National Women's Judo Championship at Visakhapatnam. She claimed top honours in the 78 kg category. Rani was also declared the best Judoka at the Championship.

 

57. Cabinet approves merger of Vijaya Bank, Dena Bank with Bank of Baroda

The Cabinet has approved the merger of Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank with Bank of Baroda. The move will help create a strong globally competitive bank with economies of scale and enable the realization of wide-ranging synergies, leveraging of networks and low-cost deposits and substantial rise in customer base and operational efficiency.The scheme will come into effect from 1st of April this year. The pay and allowances and services of the employees of all three banks will remain same as earlier.

Points to Remember

  • Vijaya Bank - Headquarters - Bangalore
  • Dena Bank - Headquarters - Mumbai
  • Bank of Baroda - Headquarters - Vadodara

 

58. ICC Test Rankings: India retain top spots

India retain top spot in ICC's year-end test rankings, following a famous 137-run win in Melbourne Test against Australia; England and New Zealand at second and third place while Australia placed fifth. India maintained their 116 points to consolidate their top place followed by the English team, who are placed at the second spot with 108 points.

Meanwhile, New Zealand team that won fourth consecutive Test series and finished the year on 107 points, have overtaken South Africa by two points to move up to the third position after completing a 1-0 win over Sri Lanka in their concluded two-Test series. The fourth-placed South African team can reach 110 points and move up to the second spot by blanking the opposition.

 

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59. Dubai Airport Retains its Position as World's Busiest in 2018

Dubai International Airport has retained its position as the world's busiest airport for the fifth consecutive year in a row in 2018. It overtook the crown of the world's busiest hub for international travel from London's Heathrow in 2014. Indian travellers emerging as the largest source of traffic for the airport with a total of more than 12.2 million travellers.

 

60. Syria and Iran signs long-term economic cooperation deal

Syria has signed a long-term economic cooperation deal with Iran. The agreement covers the industrial, agricultural, service, infrastructure and energy sectors among others. The deal was signed between Iranian first vice president Eshaq Jahangiri and Syrian Prime Minister Emad Khamis.

Iraq

  • Capital: Baghdad
  • Currency: Iraqi dinar

Syria

  • Capital: Damascus
  • Currency: Syrian pound

 

61. India and China sign protocol for exports of Indian tobacco leaves to China

India and China have signed the protocol for exports of Indian tobacco leaves to China. Quality tobacco on par with international standards is available in India at competitive prices and there is a good potential for export of Indian tobacco to China. The protocol with China will pave the way for revival of Indian tobacco exports to China and prove economically beneficial to Indian farmers.

62. Karthyayani Amma becomes Commonwealth Of Learning Goodwill Ambassador

96-year-old Karthyayani Amma has been selected as the Commonwealth of Learning Goodwill Ambassador for India. The Commonwealth of Learning is an intergovernmental organisation of The Commonwealth headquartered in Metro Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. It aims to promote distance education and open learning among its 53 member nations. She topped Aksharalaksham literacy examination conducted by Kerala State Literacy Mission.

 

63. South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa to be Chief Guest at R-Day Parade

South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa will be the Chief Guest at the Republic Day Parade. He is the second President of South Africa after Nelson Mandela to be the Chief Guest at the parade. The visit of South African President will further strengthen and enhance the close relationship between the two countries. Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa is a South African politician and the fifth and current President of South Africa. He became President following the resignation of Jacob Zuma.

64. India, Africa Field Training Exercise (IAFTX)- 2019

The final planning conference to work out the modalities for Indian Africa Field Training Exercise (IAFTX)-2019 is being conducted at Pune on 23-24 January 2019. Indian Africa Field Training Exercise (IAFTX)-2019 is scheduled to be conducted at Aundh Military Station and College of Military Engineering, Pune from 18 March to 27 March 2019.

  1. joint training exercise is being conducted with more than a dozen African countries & India. Delegates from Egypt, Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal, Sudan, South Africa, Tanzania, Namibia, Mozambique, Uganda, Niger & Zambia attended the conference.

65. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to visit India on 25-26 January

President of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa will visit India on 25-26 this month as a State Guest of Honour for Republic Day 2019. He is the second President of South Africa after President Nelson Mandela to be the Chief Guest at the Republic Day. President Ramaphosa along with Prime Minister Modi will address the India-South Africa Business Forum on the 25 January.

66. Nepal’s Central Bank Announces Ban of Indian Notes Above Rs100

Nepal's central bank has announced the ban of Indian currency notes with denominations above Rs 100. Nepal's cabinet in December had decided to ban the use of these currency notes. Currently, only the notes with a denomination of Rs 100 and below are freely exchangeable in Nepal.  Nepal’s central bank is Nepal Rashtra Bank. Governor : Chiranjibi Nepal

67. Rio de Janeiro will be World Capital of Architecture for 2020: UNESCO

The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has announced that the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro will be the World Capital of Architecture for 2020. Having defeated Paris and Melbourne, Rio will be the first city to receive the title under a program launched together by UNESCO and the International Union of Architects (UIA) in November last year. The city will host the World Congress of UIA, in July 2020, an event that occurs every three years.

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations based in Paris.

68. 2nd World Integrated Medicine Forum 2019

Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for AYUSH Shri Shripad Yesso Naik, will inaugurate the 2nd World Integrated Medicine Forum 2019 on the ‘Regulation of Homeopathic Medical Products; Advancing global collaboration’ being organized from 23-25 January, 2019 in Goa.

The organizers of the forum are the Central Council for Research in Homeopathy, under the Ministry of AYUSH. The forum will explore and illustrate the potential benefits and pitfalls of bi-lateral/multilateral collaboration and advance global cooperation on a synergistic basis.

69. 60% of wild coffee species at extinction risk due to climate change

Sixty per cent of all wild coffee species are at the risk of extinction due to a deadly mix of climate change, deforestation and severe diseases.

This includes the wild relative of Coffea arabica, the world's favourite and most widely traded coffee.For the first time ever, scientists have carried out an International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species assessment for all 124 coffee species. The global coffee trade currently relies on only two species -- Arabica (60 per cent) and Robusta (40 per cent).

70. First human rights TV channel Launched in London

The world’s first television channel dedicated to human rights was launched in London by the International Observatory of Human Rights (IOHR). It would be a web-based channel and would deliver human rights issues to audiences in over 20 countries across Europe, Latin America and the Middle East. The broadcasts of the channel can be viewed via the netgem.tv interactive platform. The programmes are currently broadcasted in English and eventually hopes to broadcast in other languages including Farsi, Turkish, Arabic and Russian.

The International Observatory of Human Rights is an independent non-profit and non-governmental organisation. IOHR partners with local and international human rights group to drive and promote positive changes and push for justice and the respect of human rights worldwide.

71. Times Higher Education Emerging Economies University Rankings 2019

The London-based Times Higher Education (THE), a global organization that produces data, analysis and expertise on higher education has released the he Emerging Economies University Rankings 2019. The 2019 ranking comprises of 450 universities from 43 countries, across four continents. The Indian Institute of Science has topped the rankings among Indian institutes with 14th rank; the second spot among Indian Institutes was occupied by the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay with 27th rank.

Comparing with other countries, China continues to lead the ranking with a many as 70 universities listed in the ranking. Also, it also has to its credit the top spots with its Tsinghua University ranked at number 1. In fact, Top 4 of the top 5 spots belong to the Chinese Universities.
72. British Parliament rejects Brexit deal

British Prime Minister Theresa May suffered a crushing defeat in Parliament over Brexit deal. May's bid to get the Withdrawal Agreement, struck between Britain and European Union, passed by House of Commons was defeated by a margin of 202 to 432 - a majority of 230 votes. This is the biggest defeat ever suffered by a British premier in modern history.

Over 100 lawmakers of May's Conservative party - both Brexiteers and Remainers - overwhelmingly voted against the deal. Soon after the defeat, opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn submitted a motion of no-confidence against May's government. It will come up for discussion in the House. According to the Britain's parliamentary procedure, when a bill is rejected by the MPs, the prime minister has three sitting days to return to Parliament with a Plan B.

73. 9th International Conference on Micro Irrigation

Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Government of India is organizing the 9th International Micro Irrigation Conference on Modern Agriculture at Aurangabad in Maharashtra from January 16–18, 2019, in association with International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage (ICID), Indian National Committee on Surface Water (INCSW) and WAPCOS Limited.

The Conference will provide a forum for discussions and deliberation through seminars, exhibitions and sessions and will serve to build awareness regarding large-scale use of micro irrigation, strategies for water conservation, advanced crop technology, engineering techniques, etc.

74. Sino-Indian Digital Collaboration Plaza launched

The Sino-Indian Digital Collaboration Plaza (SIDCOP), an initiative to bring Indian IT companies and Chinese enterprises closer to each other on a single AI enabled platform was launched on 10th January 2019. This is a partnership by National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) with Municipal Governments of Guiyang and Dalian. Indian IT enterprises are world renowned for their expertise in business transformation and operational optimization by using IT tools in complex business environments. Indian IT enterprises have a long and distinguished pedigree of international clients, whom they have helped transform their businesses and globalize and revolutionize with changing times.

SIDCOP, which is a boundary-less marketplace offers this opportunity for Chinese enterprises in order to assist them in operational optimization and adopting industry best practices in business solutions. This platform could be useful to connect with top providers from India and help Chinese enterprises source the right solution providers for their projects.

75. World Bank President Jim Yong Kim to step down on Feb 1

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim announced that he will step down from his position on February 1 - much before the end of his term in 2022. Kim, 58, has been in this position for over six years now. In a statement, the World Bank said he will join a firm and focus on increasing infrastructure investments in developing countries.

Kristalina Georgieva, World Bank CEO, will assume the role of interim President effective 1st of next month.The president of the Washington-based World Bank has always been an American citizen nominated by the United States, which is the largest shareholder of this multilateral financial institution.

76. UN observes First-Ever World Braille Day on 4 January

The United Nations observed the first official World Braille Day on 4th January to create awareness about the importance of Braille for approximately 1.3 billion people living with some form of distance or near vision impairment. The proclamation for the celebration of World Braille Day was made by the United Nations General Assembly as a means for realising the human rights of visually-impaired and partially-sighted people, and bringing written language to the forefront as a critical prerequisite for promoting fundamental freedoms. World Braille Day is celebrated on the January 4th to honour Louis Braille, who is credited for inventing the Braille script. Louis Braille was born in France on 4 January 1809. The World Braille Day is celebrated on his Birth Anniversary.

77. Pakistan’s Provincial Government declares Panj Tirath Hindu religious site as national heritage

The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) provincial government of Pakistan has declared the ancient Hindu religious site of Panj Tirath in Peshawar of North Western Pakistan as national heritage. The Directorate of Archaeology and Museums of KP has issued a notification under the KP Antiquities Act 2016 declaring the land in the Panj Tirath Park as a heritage site.

Panj Tirath derives its name from the five pools of water in the site which also has a temple. According to the epic of Mahabharat, the mythical king Pandu belonged to this area and Hindus used to come to these pools for bathing during the auspicious month of Karteek and worship for two days under the trees.

78. Five nations assume charge as non-permanent members of UN Security Council

Belgium, Dominican Republic, Germany, Indonesia and South Africa have begun to assume responsibilities as non-permanent members of the UN Security Council. The five countries hold a two-year term while Bolivia, Ethiopia, Kazakhstan, Netherlands and Sweden have just left the Security Council.

The 15-member Security Council has five permanent members -- Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States, and 10 non-permanent members elected for two-year terms by the UN General Assembly. The council is the only UN body that makes decisions and has the power to impose sanctions and authorize the use of force.

79. First in history! China's spacecraft nears landing on the far side of moon

China is trying to reach a milestone in space exploration: landing a vehicle on the far side of the moon for the first time in history. The mission is one in a series that underscore the country’s ambitions to join — and even lead — the space race. The spacecraft, whose landing could come on Thursday, is called Chang’e-4 after the moon goddess in Chinese mythology.

China landed another rover on the moon in 2013, joining the United States and the Soviet Union as the only nations to have carried out a “soft landing” there, but the Chang’e-4 would be the first to touch down on the side of the moon that perpetually faces away from the Earth.

80.Pakistan to issue Panda Bonds to raise capital in China

The government of Pakistan has decided to launch Panda Bonds to raise loans from Chinese capital markets. Launching of Panda Bonds is part of Pakistan’s plans to move towards giving the Chinese currency, a status at par with that enjoyed by the US dollar.

The interest rates and the size of the bonds would be decided at a later stage. Panda bonds are Chinese renminbi-denominated bonds from a non-Chinese issuer, sold in the People’s Republic of China. The first two Panda bonds were issued in October 2005 on the by the International Finance Corporation and the Asian Development Bank on the same day.

 

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81. PM Modi dedicates National Salt Satyagraha Memorial to the nation

Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicated National Salt Satyagraha Memorial to the nation at Dandi village in South Gujarat. At the memorial site, he also unveiled statues of Mahatma Gandhi and 80 Satyagrahis who had marched with him during the historic Dandi Salt March in 1930. The memorial also has 24-narrative murals depicting various events and stories from the historic 1930 Salt March.

The Salt Satyagraha March, well known as the Dandi March of 1930 has been a landmark event in the history of India’s freedom struggle. On this day, Satyagrahis led by Mahatma Gandhi marched 241-miles from Sabarmati Ashram to the coastal village of Dandi and made salt from seawater breaking the Salt Law.

82. Shri K J Alphons inaugurates the First Swadesh Darshan project in Sikkim

Shri. K.J. Alphons, Union Minister for Tourism inaugurated the project “Development of North East Circuit in Gangtok, Sikkim. The project implemented under Swadesh Darshan Scheme of Ministry of Tourism. Government of India was sanctioned by the Ministry in June 2015 for Rs. 98.05 Crores and is the first ever project in Sikkim under the scheme. The Ministry has sanctioned 16 projects for Rs. 1349.04 crores covering all North Eastern States under its schemes of Swadesh Darshan and PRASHAD.

Swadesh Darshan scheme is one of the flagship scheme of Ministry of tourism for development of thematic circuits in the country in a planned and prioritised manner. The scheme was launched in 2014 -15 and as on date the Ministry has sanctioned 77 projects worth projects for Rs. 6121.69 Crore to 30 States and UTs.

83. The International Year of the Periodic Table

The United Nations announced 2019 as the International Year of the Periodic Table of the Chemical Elements to highlight its first publication in 1869. The periodic table as we know it today was first designed by the Russian scientist Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev. The announcement by the United Nations will help to raise the profile of how chemistry can provide solutions to global challenges in agriculture, education, energy and health.

 

84. UP government approves construction of world’s longest expressway

Uttar Pradesh state cabinet approved construction of a four-lane Ganga Expressway connecting Prayagraj to Western Uttar Pradesh. Ganga Expressway will be 600 kilometres long and can be expanded to six-lane in future. The expressway would cost about 36,000 crore rupees. It will start from Meerut and touch Amroha, Bulandshahr, Badaun, Shahjahanpur ,Farrukhabad, Hardoi, Kannauj, Unnao, Rae Bareli, Pratapgarh before reaching Allahabad.

85. Uttarakhand's first tulip garden in Pithoragarh

Uttarakhand's first tulip garden will come up over 50 hectares of forest land in Pithoragarh district. The garden will be developed by the ONGC, under its corporate social responsibility programme in over 50 hectares of forest land near Chandak hill top. The proposed tulip garden will be the country's second after the one located in Srinagar (J&K). The government will import tulip bulbs from Holland that blooms from mid March to May.

86. Maharashtra govt launched special scheme to curb infant deaths

The Maharashtra government started distributing baby-care kits to the children born in primary health centres and government hospitals, as part of its efforts to reduce the infant mortality rate. The scheme is applicable only for the first child and will benefit around four lakh women across the state.

The baby-care kits will be given to the women, who are admitted to a state-run hospital, after their first delivery. The government has allocated Rs 20 crore for the scheme. Each kit contains a blanket, a small mattress, a towel, a thermometer, baby oil, shampoo, toys, nail-cutter, gloves, socks, among other things. The cost of the kit is around Rs 2,000.

87. Civil aviation ministry launches first GI store

The Civil Aviation ministry launched the country’s first Geographical Indication (GI) store at Dabolim International Airport in Goa. Union Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu said that all the airports in the country will soon have 'Geographical Indication Stores'. The Union Minister informed that currently there are 270 GI registered products in the country and the store will be a boon for the global tourists. A Geographical Indication (GI) is an agricultural, natural or a manufactured product (handicrafts and industrial goods) originating from a particular area.

88. India improves its global corruption ranking in 2018

India has improved its ranking on a global corruption index in 2018 by three points and moved to 78th position with a score of 41. In the list of 180 countries, China and Pakistan lagged far behind at 87th and 117th position, respectively. According to the rankings released by an anti-corruption watchdog, Denmark is the least corrupt country followed by New Zealand. Somalia, Syria and South Sudan are the most corrupt countries in the world.

89. Kerala to launch NRI pension scheme

The Kerala government will soon launch a PravasiDividendPensionSchemePravasiDividendPensionScheme. The government will provide regular pension to Non Resident Keralites on a one-time payment of Rs 5 lakh. The one-time payment of Rs 5 lakh will be deposited with KIIFB (Kerala Infrastructure Investment Fund Board) for financing infrastructure projects.

The state would also set up a call centre with an international Toll Free Line to provide information, register complaints and details about action taken on various issues faced by the Non-Resident Indians.

90. Madhya Pradesh announces 'Yuva Swabhiman Yojana' for poor urban youth

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath announced the launch of the 'Yuva Swabhiman Yojana' for youths from the economically weaker sections in urban areas. Under this scheme, 100 days of employment will be provided to youths from economically weaker sections in urban areas. They will also be given skill training.The urban poor youth are left out as those in rural areas get employment under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA). This scheme will effectively cover urban youth.

91. World’s biggest cyclothon ‘Swasth Bharat Yatra’ culminates in Delhi

The Swasth Bharat Yatra, the world’s biggest cyclothon to push people to eat right, culminated in New Delhi. The campaign was flagged-off on 16th October last year on the occasion of World Food Day. The yatra began from six different locations - Leh, Panaji, Thiruvananthapuram, Puducherry, Kolkata and Agartala on six different tracks. This yatra is a part of the Eat Right India movement.

 

92. Indian Railways has named Train 18 as Vande Bharat Express

Minister of Railways & Coal, Shri Piyush Goyal announced the name Vande Bharat Express for Train 18, acknowledging its made-in-India status. This train set has been manufactured by Integral Coach Factory (ICF) in the period of 18 months under 'Make in India' program.

Vande Bharat Express is India's first semi-high speed train equipped with world class passenger amenities. It can achieve high speeds (max speed of 160 kmph) due to faster acceleration & deceleration and will reduced journey time to 8 hours between New Delhi & Varanasi .

93. Union Minister Gadkari inaugurates Atal Setu in Goa

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari inaugurated, 5.1-kilometer long “Atal Setu” bridge across river Mandovi in Panaji, Goa. It would be third such bridge to connect the state capital with North Goa. The bridge is constructed by the GIDC (Goa Infrastructure Development Corporation) and engineering and construction major Larsen and Toubro. The link will decongest Panaji to a great extent, as approximately 66,000 vehicles enter the capital city every day.

94. Southern Railway won number one for cleanliness

The Southern Railway has bagged the number one position for cleanliness in all the 17 railway zones in the country. This achievement was under the category of other than Premium Category trains in the recent Trains Cleanliness Survey conducted by IRCTC on all India level.

The survey is conducted once a year to periodically monitor the progress of ‘Swachh Rail Swachh Bharat’ mission. Two private companies, IRCLASS Systems and Solutions Pvt. Ltd and IPSOS Research Private Limited, were engaged to conduct the survey on behalf of IRCTC.

95. National Conclave on Technical Textiles at Mumbai

Ministry of Textiles will hold National Conclave on Technical Textiles on 29th January 2019 in Mumbai. The event will also be a curtain raiser for TechnoTex 2019. The conclave will be presided over by the Union Minister of Textiles, Smriti Zubin Irani.

Technical textiles are textile material and products manufactured primarily for technical performance and functional properties. They find application in areas like agriculture, medical, infrastructure, automotive, aerospace, sports, defence and packaging. As per baseline survey of technical textile industry in India, there are around 2100 units manufacturing technical textiles in the country.

96. Tata enters list of top 100 valuable brands

The ‘Tata’ brand has entered the list of Top 100 most valuable global brands, according to the Brand Finance Global 500, 2019 report. The report has been released at the World Economic Forum in Davos. Climbing from the 104th to the 86th position this year, Tata is the lone Indian brand in the Top 100. The total value of Brand Tata increased 37 per cent to $19.5 billion in 2019 from $14.2 billion a year ago.

 

97. Uttar Pradesh celebrated it's 69th foundation

Uttar Pradesh celebrated it's 69th foundation day on 24 January. To celebrate the occasion the main function was organised at Awadh Shilp Gram in Lucknow. Uttar Pradesh was earlier known as United Province but through a Gazette notification, it got its name of Uttar Pradesh on January 24, 1950.

Points to Remember

  • Capital : Lucknow
  • Governor : Ram Naik
  • Chief Minister : Yogi Adityanath
  • Lok Sabha Seats : 80
  • Rajya Sabha Seats : 31

98. Fourth edition of Bharat Parv begins in Delhi

Fourth edition of Bharat Parv, showcasing the spirit of Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat began at Red Fort in Delhi. It will continue till 31st January. The five day event is a part of Republic Day Celebrations. The objective of this festival is to generate a patriotic fervour and promote rich cultural diversity of the country.

99. Sugarcane juice declared ‘national drink’ of Pakistan

The Pakistan government declared sugarcane juice as the “national drink” of the country. The announcement came after the government conducted a Twitter poll. People were asked to decide on the country’s national drink with two other options i.e. orange and carrot.

According to the poll, 7,616 people or 81 per cent cast their votes favouring sugarcane juice, 15 percent voted for orange juice while 4 percent chose carrot.

100. 'Samantha Express' to cover places linked to Ambedkar & Buddha

A special tourist train covering prominent places associated with chief architect of the Indian Constitution Dr BR Ambedkar and Gautam Buddha. The train will embark on its maiden journey on April 14 from Nagpur. The train, 'Samantha Express', will be run by the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation. The train will cover Chaityabhoomi (Mumbai), Mhow (Indore), Bodhgaya (Gaya), Sarnath (Varanasi), Lumbini (Nautanwa), Kushinagar (Gorakhpur), Deekshabhoomi (Nagpur), all places linked with either Lord Buddha or Ambedkar.

101. Oxford chooses ‘Nari Shakti’ as Hindi word of 2018

Oxford dictionaries declared “Nari Shakti” as the Hindi word for the year 2018. The announcement was made during a session at the ongoing Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) at the Diggi Palace. According to the Oxford dictionaries, the word has been derived from Sanskrit and is used today to symbolise women “taking charge of their lives”. March 2018 recorded a large spike in the use of ‘Nari Shakti’ as discussion arose around the Government of India’s Nari Shakti Puraskar .Oxford had named ‘Aadhaar’ as its Hindi word for the year 2017.

102. Telangana to set up 'Save Tiger Protection Force'

The Telangana government has decided to form a 'State Tiger Protection Force' to save the Big Cat population in the State. The 112-member-armed STPF will be headed by an Assistant Conservator of Forests to protect tiger population in Amarabad and Kawal Tiger Reserves. The State Forest Protection Committee headed by Chief Secretary S K Joshi took the decision to form the STPF at its meeting.

The Committee decided to act tough against those felling forest trees and committing other related crimes. Cases under the Preventive Detention Act would be registered against violators.

103. Nation celebrates 70th Republic Day

The nation celebrated its 70th Republic Day on 26 Jan, 2019 with a grand military parade at Rajpath in New Delhi. South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa was the Chief Guest at the Republic Day Parade. This year celebration marks the 150th birth anniversary of Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi, the theme of this year tableaux is Gandhi. The tableau of sixteen States and Union Territories and six Central Ministries participated in the Republic Day Parade.

The President conferred the Ashoka Chakra India's highest peacetime gallantry award to Lance Naik Nazir Ahmad Wani, a militant-turned-soldier. A major highlight of the parade was participation of four Indian National Army veterans -- Parmanand, Lalti Ram, Hira Singh and Bhagmal, all aged over 90 years -- for the first time. 'Nari Shakti' was on full display with an all-woman Assam Rifles contingent creating history by participating for the first time in the parade, which was led by Major Khushboo Kanwar. Twenty-six children - six girls and 20 boys awardees of Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puruskar for their exceptional achievement also graced the occasion.

104. 9thNational Voters’ Day

The country is celebrating the 9th National Voters' Day (NVD) on 25th January 2019. President of India Sh. Ram Nath Kovind will be the Chief Guest at the national function being organized by Election Commission of India at Delhi. ‘No Voter to be Left Behind’ has been selected as the theme for the National Voters’ Day. My Vote Matters, a Quarterly Magazine will be launched on the occasion and the first copy shall be presented by the Commission to the Hon’ble President.

The National Voters’ Day (NVD) is celebrated all over the country on January 25 every year since 2011 to mark the Foundation day of Election Commission of India, which was established on 25th January 1950.

105. INS Kohassa

Naval Air Station (NAS) Shibpur was commissioned as INS Kohassa by Admiral Sunil Lanba. INS Kohassa has been named after a White-Bellied Sea Eagle, which is a large bird of prey, endemic to Andaman and Nicobar Islands. NAS Shibpur was established in 2001 as a Forward Operating Air Base (FOAB) for enhanced surveillance in North Andaman. The close proximity of Coco Islands (Myanmar) and wide expanse of Indian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) makes the base a very vital asset. NAS Shibpur was identified by NITI Aayog as one of the ‘Early Bird’ project as part of holistic island development.

106. I&B Ministry to facilitate Jharkhand International Film Festival, 2019

With a view to promote and showcase the Best of Indian cinema, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, through Directorate of Film Festivals, will be lending support to the organization of 2nd Jharkhand International Film Festival in Ranchi, Jharkhand from 1st to 3rd February, 2019. The objective of promoting the Festival is to encourage states that have showcased potential of promoting cinema.

The support is being provided under the “Grants in Aid” scheme. Jharkhand was chosen as the State in Focus at IFFI 2018.

107. Government to launch Technology Mission Centre on Solar Energy & Water Treatment in Chennai

Union Minister for Science & Technology, Earth Sciences and Environment, Forests & Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan will be launching three important centre’s set up by Department of Science and Technology (DST), nucleated at Indian Institute of Technology, Madras.

The first of these is the establishment of DST –IITM Solar Energy Harnessing Centre. Second in line is the DST-IITM Water –IC for SUTRAM of EASY WATER (DST- IITM Water Innovation Centre for Sustainable Treatment, Reuse and Management for Efficient, Affordable and Synergistic Solutions). The third one would be the Test bed on Solar thermal desalination solutions which are being established by IIT Madras and Empereal KGDS.

108. Dharmendra Pradhan launches new reforms, guidelines to strengthen Jan Shikshan Santhans (JSS)

In a bid to boost skill training and entrepreneurship in the remotest corners of the country, Dharmendra Pradhan announced comprehensive reforms for Jan ShikshanSansthan (JSS), to further strengthen the skills ecosystem benefiting those in the underprivileged sections of society. National Conference for Jan ShikshanSansthan (JSSs) is being held in New Delhi.

Formerly under the Ministry of Human Resources Development, Jan ShikshanSansthan has been transferred to the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship in 2018. Earlier known as ShramikVidyapeeth and later renamed Jan ShikshanSansthan in April 2000, the scheme has been successfully working for the past 50 years.

109. ISRO successfully launched PSLV C44 carrying Kalamsat & imaging satellite Microsat R

The Indian Space Research Organisation successfully launched the PSLV C 44 carrying kalam sat and Microsat R on 24 January night. Kalamsat is a ten cm cube weighing one kilogram communication satellite with a life span of two months. It was built by India's talented students. Microsat-R is an small Indian earth observation satellite built for the Indian military Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO). India has become the first country to use the fourth stage of a space rocket as an orbital platform for micro-gravity experiments.

110. JNPT becomes the only Indian port to be listed amongst the world’s top 30 container ports

As per the latest Lloyds Report, The Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT), India’s premiere container port got listed amongst the top 30 container ports globally. JNPT notched up five spots, to be 28th on the list, compared to its previous ranking.

JNPT is located in Mumbai, Maharashtra. It is the largest container port in India. Its common name derives from the names of Nhava and Sheva villages that were situated here.

111. Arunachal govt declares Pakke Hornbill Fest as ‘state festival’

Government of Arunachal Pradesh declared the Pakke Paga Hornbill Festival (PPHF), as a “state festival”. The first-ever PPHF was held on January 16–18, 2015. It is the only conservation festival of Arunachal Pradesh. Arunachal Pradesh Forest Department will fund the festival from 2020 and permanent infrastructure will be constructed for the festival ground.

112. Cabinet approves creation of the National Bench of the Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal

The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has approved the creation of National Bench of the Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT). The National Bench of the Appellate Tribunal shall be situated at New Delhi. GSTAT shall be presided over by its President and shall consist of one Technical Member (Centre) and one Technical Member (State). It is the forum of second appeal in GST laws and the first common forum of dispute resolution between Centre and States.

113. Ministry of Women & Child Development to Celebrate National Girl Child Day

The Women & Child Development Ministry celebrates National Girl Child Day (NGCD) at Pravasi Bharti Kendra, Chankyapuri, New Delhi. The programme observes the anniversary of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao (BBBP) Scheme. The theme of this NGCD is “Empowering Girls for a Brighter Tomorrow”

The objective of this day is to generate awareness on the issue of declining Child Sex Ratio (CSR) and create a positive environment around valuing the girl child. Union Minister, MWCD, Smt. Maneka Sanjay Gandhi will grace the occasion as Chief Guest.

114. PM Modi inaugurates Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose museum

Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose museum at Red Fort in Delhi. Also Nation pays homage to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose on his 122nd birth anniversary on 23rd January. The museum showcases various artefacts related to Subhash Chandra Bose and Indian National Army.

The museum also showcases the heroism, valour and sacrifices made by Indian soldiers during the World War-I. As a mark of respect to Netaji, the Centre has named Ross Island in the Anadman and Nicobar Islands as Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Dweep.

115. Jallikattu event breaks Guinness record

The jallikattu (bull taming sport) event in Tamil Nadu’s Viralimalai made to Guinness records for the highest number of bulls to have taken part in it i.e. 1,353. According to the Viralimalai Jallikattu committee, they had expected 2,000 bulls for the event. The event made a Guinness record by beating the earlier record of 647 bulls’ participation in Madurai Jallikkattu.

Jallikkattu is a traditional bull taming sport in the state and is conducted during the Pongal festival. However, the sport had faced a ban after protests by the Animal Welfare Board of India and animal rights organisation Peta.

116. India Navy begins coastal defence exercise 'Sea Vigil'

The Indian navy launched the first of its kind coastal defence exercise code named “Sea Vigil". The navy and Coast Guard will join hands with the State Marine Police, state police, port authorities and state fishing departments besides fishing communities and people living along the coast in 13 Indian states and Union Territories for the two day long exercise. The two-day exercise, first of its kind, is being conducted along the entire 7,516.6 km of coastline and Exclusive Economic Zone of India. Exercise Sea Vigil aims to comprehensively and holistically validate the efficacy of measures taken since 26/11.

117. RPF Women Squad ‘JOYMATI BAHINI’ launched in Guwahati

A dedicated RPF Women Squad named as ‘JOYMATI BAHINI’, comprising women sub-inspector and constables of the Railway Protection Force (RPF) was officially launched at Kamkhaya Railway Station in Guwahati. It was named after the courageous princess, Joymati to have a constant motivating factor to be courageous, and dedicated at all times in the service to society. The main aim of the Joymati Bahini is to strengthen women security around Guwahati region within railway premises and trains.

118. First interstate bridge in J&K inaugurated

Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways Shri Nitin Gadkari dedicated to the nation a 1210-meter span-bridge over the river Raavi in Jammu and Kashmir. The bridge is named as Keediyan-Gandiyal bridge. This project will benefit over 2,20,000 people living on the two sides – Kathua in Jammu, and Pathankot in Punjab. This will reduce the distance between the two cities from 45 kms to 8.6 kms.

119. Manipur, Meghalaya, Tripura celebrated their statehood day

Manipur, Meghalaya and Tripura celebrated their statehood day on 21 January. On this day in 1972, all the three states became full-fledged states under the North Eastern Region (Reorganisation) Act, 1971.

Capitals and Chief Ministers of the above 3 states are as follows

  • Manipur : Imphal, N. Biren Singh
  • Meghalaya : Shillong, Conrad Sangma
  • Tripura : Agartala, Biplab Kumar Deb

120. IBBI sets up committee under SEBI chairman UK Sinha

Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India has set up a working group under former Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) Chairman UK Sinha. The committee will set up regulatory framework to facilitate insolvency resolution and liquidation of debtors in a corporate group within the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC). The group with seven members and four invitees will submit its report in two months.

Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) is the regulator for overseeing insolvency proceedings.

  • Chairperson: M. S. Sahoo
  • Headquarters : New Delhi

121. India Steel 2019 - Exhibition and Conference begins in Mumbai

India Steel 2019 Exhibition and Conference inaugurated in Mumbai from 22nd to 24th January, 2019. The three-day event organised by Ministry of Steel will help chart out the future growth path of the steel industry.

Ministry of Steel organises the India Steel Exhibition and Conference once in two years. India has become the second largest producer of crude steel during 2018. The country is also the largest producer of sponge iron in the world and the 3rd largest steel consumer in the world after China and USA. The National Steel Policy 2017 announced by Ministry of Steel envisages production of 300 million tonnes by 2030-31.

122. Manipur, Meghalaya, Tripura celebrates statehood day

Manipur, Meghalaya and Tripura are celebrating their statehood day. On this day in 1972, all the three states became full-fledged states under the North Eastern Region (Reorganization) Act, 1971. The States in the North Eastern Region were reconstituted by the North Eastern Areas (Re-organisation) Act 1971. This Act provides for the establishment of the States of Manipur and Tripura and the formation of the State of Meghalaya and of the Union territories of Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh by re-organization of the existing State of Assam and matters connected therewith. The Act established a common cadre of the Indian Administrative Service, the Indian Police Service, and the Indian Forest Service for the states of Manipur and Tripura.

123. 15th Pravasi Bhartiya Divas begins at Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh

The 15th edition of Pravasi Bhartiya Divas begins at Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. It is being organized in Varanasi for the first time. The theme this year is, 'Role of Indian Diaspora in building New India'. Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) is celebrated once in two years to strengthen the engagement of the overseas Indian community with the Government, reconnect them with their roots and celebrate their achievements and contributions. These Conferences are chaired by the Minister of External Affairs.

124. India to surpass UK in world's largest economy rankings in 2019: PwC

India is likely to surpass the United Kingdom in the world's largest economy rankings in 2019, to become world's fifth largest economy, according to a report by global consultancy firm PwC. PwC's Global Economy Watch report projects real GDP growth of 1.6 per cent for the UK, 1.7 per cent for France and 7.6 per cent for India in 2019.

According to World Bank data, India became the world's sixth largest economy in 2017 surpassing France and was likely to go past the UK which stood at the fifth position. The US was the world's largest economy with a size of 19.39 trillion dollars, followed by China at 12.23 trillion dollars at the second place in 2017.

125. Madhu Babu Pension Yojana

The government of Odisha announced a hike of Rs 200 per month in the social security pension under Madhu Babu Pension Yojana (MBPY). The Madhu Babu Pension Yojana (MBPY) is a pension scheme under the Department of Social Security and Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities for the disabled, old age persons in the state of Odisha. The Scheme was instituted by merging the two pension schemes i.e. namely, Revised Old Age Pension Rules, 1989 and Disability Pension Rules, 1985.

Beneficiaries of the Madhu Babu Pension Yojana are: Person of 60 years of age and above, a widow, an AIDS patient identified by the State/District AIDS Control Society or district AIDS prevention control Unit, an unmarried woman above 30 years belonging to a BPL Family, etc.

126. PM inaugurated National Museum of Indian Cinema

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated the National Museum of Indian Cinema in Mumbai. The Museum is housed in two buildings – the New Museum Building and the 19th century historic palace Gulshan Mahal – in the Films Division campus in Mumbai. Gulshan Mahal is an ASI Grade-II Heritage Structure which has been restored as part of the NMIC project.

127. PM Modi lays foundation stone of Medical College in Silvassa

Prime Minister laid the foundation stone of Medical College in Sayli in Silvassa. On the occasion, he said Dadra and Nagar Haveli today got its first medical college since independence.     He added the Medical College will help boost healthcare facilities in the region. The Prime Minister said that in the last three years, investment worth around 9000 crore rupees has been made in Daman and Dadra and Nagar Haveli. Prime Minister also laid the foundation stone of Nirali Cancer hospital in Navsari which will benefit cancer patients of South Gujarat and neighbouring states.

128. Nirmala Sitharaman launches TN Defence corridor

Defence Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman launched Defence Industrial corridor in Tiruchiraplli, Tamil Nadu. Four new defence products including Trichy Assault Rifle were introduced at the launch function. Dr.Ajay Kumar, Defence Production secretary said that the corridor is expected to have six nodes at Trichy, Salem, Hosur, Kovai, Madurai as well as Chennai.

He also added that the corridor is expected to be a specialised facility of aero component manufacturing. Ordnance Factory Board has announced 2305 crore rupees investment in the corridor. Defence Ministry said that Tiruchirappalli offers perfect ecosystem for defence manufacturing as major public sector companies like BHEL, Heavy Alloy Penetrator Project, Ordnance Factory and Railway workshops function in the region.

This will be the country's second defence industrial corridor after the first one was launched in Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh August last year. The Ministry also said that Tamil Nadu ranks 4th in the country with 9.8% of India's total exports and the corridor will expand the exporting opportunities from the region.

129. UP govt approves 10% reservation in jobs, educational institutions for economically weaker sections in general category

UPGovt Uttar Pradesh government has approved 10 per cent reservation in jobs and educational institutions for economically backward in the general category. Cabinet minister and UP government spokesperson Shrikant Sharma said that the nod was given at a meeting of the state cabinet presided over by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in Lucknow yesterday.

The Constitution (124th Amendment) Bill, 2019, providing for 10 per cent reservation in government jobs and educational institutions to the economically weaker sections in the general category was passed by Parliament in its recently concluded winter session. President Ram Nath Kovind has since given his assent to the bill.

130. Mauritius PM Pravind Kumar Jugnauth reaches New Delhi

Prime Minister Pravind Kumar Jugnauth has reached New Delhi on a week-long visit to India. He will leave for Varanasi to take part in the Pravasi Bhartiya Diwas on Monday. During his visit, he will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi and take boat ride followed by Ganga Aarti.

India is Mauritius’ largest trading partner and has been the largest exporter of goods and services to Mauritius since 2007. Eight Indian Public Sector Enterprises are currently functioning in Mauritius.Over the past forty years, India has extended several Lines of Credit to Mauritius to assist in the development of its infrastructure, human resource, skills development and capacity building.In March 2015, a new Line of Credit of 500 million dollars for civilian infrastructure projects was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to Mauritius.

131. Total lunar eclipse and supermoon

At the same time, Earth will also witness a supermoon as the satellite will be closer to the planet. The moon will appear slightly bigger and brighter than usual.The eclipse begins with the partial phase around 0904 hours IST on Monday. Totality, when Earth's shadow completely blankets the moon, will last 62 minutes, beginning at 10:11 a.m.

During totality, the moon will look red, also known as a blood moon, because of sunlight scattering off Earth's atmosphere. This total lunar eclipse is the 18th total lunar eclipse since 2001.If the skies are clear, the entire eclipse will be visible in North and South America, as well as Greenland, Iceland, United Kingdom, and in most parts of Europe.

 

132. Raksha Mantri Dedicates Diffo Bridge in Arunachal to The Nation

Raksha Mantri Smt Nirmala Sitharaman inaugurated the 426.60 metre long Pre Stressed Concrete Box Girder type bridge over Diffo river on Roing-Koron-Paya road in Arunachal Pradesh. Dedicating the bridge to the nation, the Raksha Mantri praised the commendable work being done by Project Udayak, Border Roads Organisation (BRO) in this region. This prestigious bridge which would provide uninterrupted access between Dibang valley and Lohit valley region of Eastern Arunachal Pradesh and an all-weather Road to the troops deployed on the China Border.

133. Tourism Minister co-chairs the 7th ASEAN-India Tourism Ministers meeting at Ha Long City, Viet Nam

The Union Minister for Tourism, Shri. K. J. Alphons attended the Seventh Meeting of Tourism Ministers of ASEAN and India held in Ha Long City, Viet Nam. Shri. K J Alphons co-chaired the Tourism Ministers’ meeting with the Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Viet Nam, Mr. Nguyen Ngoc Thien. As a follow up to the Summit, the Ministers launched the ASEAN-India Tourism Cooperation Year 2019, and looked forward to enhancing cooperation with a view to increasing two-way tourist visits and promoting greater people-to-people exchanges between ASEAN and India. Earlier, during the ASEAN - India Commemorative Summit in January 2018, the Prime Minister of India had proposed designating the year 2019 as ASEAN-India Tourism Year.

134. Palestine takes over chairmanship of G77

Palestine has taken over the chairmanship of G77 from Egypt. Palestine will be formally elected chair at the annual G77 ministerial meeting, scheduled in mid-September, 2019. G77 is a coalition of 134 developing nations (including China) at the United Nations. G77 was formed on 15 June 1964 by the “Joint Declaration of the Seventy-Seven Countries” issued at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development. The group was credited with a common stance against apartheid and for supporting global disarmament.

135. Govt approves setting up of three new naval air squadrons

The Government has approved setting up of three new naval air squadrons in Gujarat and Tamil Nadu as part of efforts to bolster the Indian Navy's overall strength. Government has also sanctioned recruitment of manpower for manning additional aircraft in existing Dornier surveillance squadrons in Kerala and Andaman Islands.

A contract for procurement of 12 Dornier aircraft was signed with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited two years back and their delivery is commencing soon. The new Dornier 228 maritime surveillance aircraft to be delivered to the Navy are fitted with improved 'state of the art' sensors and equipment which includes glass cockpit, advanced surveillance radar, optical sensors and networking features.

136. IAF AN-32 lands in Pakyong Airport of Sikkim

For the first time, Antonov-32 AN-32 transport aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF) carried out a successful landing at Sikkim’s Pakyong, one of the highest airfields in the country. Pakyong Airport is a Greenfield airport near Gangtok, the capital of the state of Sikkim. It is the first greenfield airport to be constructed in in the Northeastern Region of India.

The airport is strategically important and the Indian Air Force is also building on the ability to land certain military aircraft at the Pakyong Airport. Prior to the inauguration of the Pakyong Airport by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 24th September 2018, Sikkim was the sole state in India without a functional airport and Sikkim was dependent on the airport at Bagdogra in the neighbouring state of West Bengal, and Paro Airport in Bhutan.

137. Dr. Jitendra Singh inaugurates UNNATI-- Unispace Nanosatellite Assembly & Training programme of ISRO in Bengaluru

Space Technology has been provided with more budgetary allocations during the last five years and now it is utilised in Infrastructure Developments like roads, Railway lines and most importantly in disaster management. He was addressing the gathering after inaugurating the UNNATI- (Unispace Nanosatellite Assembly & Training) programme organized by ISRO in Bengaluru.

UNNATI, a capacity building programme on Nanosatellite development, is an initiative by ISRO to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first United Nations conference on the exploration and peaceful uses of outer space (UNISPACE-50). UNNATI programme is planned to be conducted for 3 years by U.R. Rao Satellite Centre of ISRO.

138. National Museum of Indian Cinema

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi will inaugurate the National Museum of Indian Cinema (NMIC)in Mumbai on 19.1.2019. The state-of-the-art Museum, built at a cost of Rs. 140.61 crore,aims to take its visitors through an absorbing journey of over a century of Indian cinema in a story telling mode with the help of visuals, graphics, artifacts, interactive exhibits and multimedia expositions.

The creation of the Museum has been guided by the Museum Advisory Committee headed by Shri ShyamBenegal. An innovation Committee headed by Shri Prasoon Joshi was also constituted to provide an upgrade to NMIC. The Museum is housed in two buildings – the New Museum Building and the 19th century historic palace Gulshan Mahal – in the Films Division campus in Mumbai.

139. Pradhan Mantri Rozgar Protsahan Yojana Achieves one crore Milestone

Pradhan Mantri Rozgar Protsahan Yojana (PMRPY), the flagship scheme of the Central Government for employment generation has crossed the milestone of one crore beneficiaries as on January 14, 2019. PMRPY was announced on August 07, 2016 and is being implemented by Ministry of Labour and Employment through the Employees’ Provident Fund Organization (EPFO).

Under the scheme, Government is paying full employers’ contribution of 12% (towards Employees’ Provident Fund and Employees’ Pension Scheme both), for a period of 3 years in respect of new employees who have been registered with the EPFO on or after 1st April 2016, with salary up to Rs. 15,000 per month.

140. Regional Conference on “Deendayal Disabled Rehabilitation Scheme (DDRS)” Held at Mumbai

Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities implements a scheme titled ‘Deendayal Disabled Rehabilitation Scheme (DDRS)’. A Regional Conference for the scheme was organized on 17th January, 2019 at Nehru Centre, Mumbai covering Programme Implementing Agencies (PIAs) from the Western Region of the country.

This is the second of a series of Regional Conferences to be held across the country and the exercise will culminate in a National Conference in New Delhi. DDRS is a Central Sector Scheme of Government of India which is being implemented since 1999 for providing financial assistance to NGOs working for education and rehabilitation of persons with disabilities.This scheme was revised in 2018 and the revised scheme is being implemented since 1st April 2018.

141. Suresh Prabhu inaugurates 10th edition of India Rubber Expo 2019

Union Minister for Commerce and Industry, Suresh Prabhu inaugurated the 10th edition of the India Rubber Expo - 2019 in Mumbai. The three-day event being held at the Bombay Exhibition Centre is one of the most anticipated events in the rubber industry’s calendar.

The rubber industry is a truly homegrown industry which is having a deep impact on several global markets. The minister hoped that the rubber industry will continue to grow faster, create more employment opportunities, increase exports and add to the economic output of India.

142. IIT-Hyderabad announces launch of full-fledged B.Tech in Artificial Intelligence

Indian Institute of Technology-Hyderabad (IIT-H) has announced the launch of a full-fledged bachelor's programme in Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology from the new academic session, a first for the country and only the third globally. IIT-H is already offering a Masters in Technology programme in AI-Machine Learning (ML). Besides IIT, Carnegie Mellon University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), both of which are in the US, offer full-fledged B.Tech programmes in AI.

143. 5th National Swachh Iconic Places

The Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation and State Government agencies, local administrations and the Trusts/ Boards of the Swachh Iconic Places (SIPs) came together for a two-day consultation in Mumbai, represented by over 100 delegates from across the country. The consultation included a field visit to the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus where systematic Sanitation and restoration work is underway.

The Swachh Iconic Places initiative aims to achieve a distinctly higher level of sanitation at these places, especially in the peripheries and approach areas. Following the clarion call by the Prime Minister to make Swachhata everybody’s business, the Centre and selected States have taken up joint efforts for making the country’s iconic places Swachh. The special Swachhata initiatives at these places have received CSR support from public and private companies.

144. President of India to inaugurate Gandhian Resurgence Summit in Prayagraj

The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, will visit Uttar Pradesh (Prayagraj) on January 17, 2019 to inaugurate the Gandhian Resurgence Summit. This Summit is being organised by the Parmarath Niketan, the Harijan Sevak Sangh and the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance.

145. Numligarh Refinery Assam capacity to be expanded from 3 MMTPA to 9 MMTPA

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has given its approval to the project for capacity expansion of Numaligarh Refinery from 3 MMTPA (Million Metric Tonne Per Annum) to 9 MMTPA. It involves setting up of crude oil pipeline from Paradip to Numaligarh and product pipeline from Numaligarh to Siliguri at a cost of Rs.22,594 crore..

  1. expansion of the refinery will meet the deficit of petroleum products in the North East. It will also sustain the operations of all North East refineries by augmenting their crude availability. It will generate direct and indirect employment in Assam and is a part of the Government's Hydrocarbon Vision 2030 for the North East.

146. Election Commission of India launches Voter Awareness Forums (VAFs) across the country

Voter Awareness Forum (VAF) was launched by Election Commission of India in New Delhi. Similar VAFs were also launched by the Chief Electoral Officers in the State capitals and by District Election Officers in the Districts simultaneously. Voter Awareness Forums are informal Forums for generating awareness around electoral process through activities like discussions, quizzes, competitions and other engaging activities. All employees of the Organisation are expected to become members of the VAF with the Head of the Organisation acting as the Chair.

VAF is part of the Electoral Literacy Club programme of ECI. Launched on the 8th National Voters Day, 25th January 2018, the ELC programme envisages setting up of Electoral Literacy Club in every educational institution and Chunav Pathshala at every booth to cover those outside the formal education system.

147. India’s Satyarup becomes world’s youngest mountaineer to climb 7 peaks, 7 volcano summits

Mountaineer Satyarup Siddhanta conquered Antartica's highest point, Mount Sidley. With this feat, he became the first Indian and youngest man to climb the seven highest peaks and volcanic summits across all continents.

He achieved the feat at the age of 35 years and 262 days. Australia's Daniel Bull had done it at the age of 36 years 157 days. Last year, Satyarup had scaled the highest volcanic peak in North America, Pico de Orizaba. Satyarup hails from Haridevpur in South Kolkata and is a software engineer by profession.Mount Sidley is the highest dormant volcano in Antarctica.

 

148. 7-Member Group of Ministers (GoM) constituted for boosting the Real Estate Sector under the GST regime

In pursuance of decision in the 32nd Meeting of GST Council held on 10th January, 2019 at New Delhi, a Group of Ministers (GoM) for boosting the Real Estate Sector under the GST regime has been constituted. Shri Nitin Patel, Hon’ble Deputy Chief Minister, Government of Gujarat, will be Convener of this group.

The Terms of Reference (ToR) for the GoM for boosting Real Estate Sector under GST regime shall be as follows: Analyse tax rate of GST, Examine and suggest ways for Composition Scheme or any other Scheme, for boosting Real Estate Sector, Examine and suggest any other aspect relevant to boost Real Estate Sector.

The GoM for boosting Real Estate Sector under GST regime may invite officers from the Centre and the States, as may be required. The Conveners of Law Committee and Fitment Committee will assist the GoM. The Secretary for the GoM for boosting the Real Estate Sector under GST regime shall be Shri Manish Sinha.

149. Govt. Launches two National level Initiatives in the field of science communication

The Department of Science and Technology (DST) along with Doordarshan (DD), Prasar Bharati launched two science communication initiatives, DD Science and India Science . While DD Science is an one-hour slot on Doordarshan National channel, which will be telecast Monday to Saturday from 5 pm to 6pm, India Science is a internet-based channel, which is available on any internet-enabled device, and will offer live, scheduled play and video-on-demand services. The two science communication platforms are National level initiatives to elevate science into a celebration and bring it close to everyday life.

The channels have been conceived and supported by the DST and are being implemented and managed by Vigyan Prasar, an autonomous organisation of DST. The two science channels which are milestones in the history of science communication in India, are the first step in creating a national science channel for the country.

150. The Department of Biotechnology (DBT) has undertaken several activities and programs to promote Biotechnology Research & Development in the areas of Agriculture Biotechnology

The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) has been coordinating, guiding and managing research and education in Agriculture including horticulture, fisheries and animal sciences in the entire country. In order to leverage the efforts, the DBT and ICAR has entered into Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for much-needed emphasis on multi-disciplinary R&D activities and nurturing innovations in Agricultural Biotechnology Research and Education.

The MoU between ICAR and DBT is for mutual collaboration to explore the possibility of cooperation, convergence and synergy to promote and accelerate the progress of research and training in various disciplines of agricultural biotechnology between ICAR and DBT.

151. 1st National EMRS National Sports Meet, 2019 Began at Hyderabad

The 1st National Level Sports Meet for the students of Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRS) was inaugurated by Shri Jaswantsinh Sumanbhai Bhabhor, Minister of State for Tribal Affairs at G.M.C Balayogi Stadium, Gachibowli, Hyderabad.

Government in a historic decision has decided to establish EMRS in every block with more than 50% or more tribal population and 20,000 or more tribal persons by the year 2022. The Minister also launched an app ‘EMRS Sports Meet’ dedicated on the occasion.

The scheme of Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRSs) is one of the flagship intervention of the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, Government of India introduced in the year 1997-98 to ensure tribal students get access to quality education in the remote tribal areas.

152. Teachers, academic staff of tech institutes to get 7th Central pay commission benefits

The government has approved a proposal to extend the 7th Central Pay Commission benefits to teachers and other academic staff of the state government and government-aided degree level technical institutes. This will have additional Central government liability of over 1240 crore rupees. The Centre will reimburse 50 per cent of the total additional expenditure from 1st January 2016 to 31st March this year to be incurred by these institutes for payment of arrears.

The measure will directly benefit more than 29 thousand teachers and other academic staff of state government funded colleges and institutes. Besides, about three-and-a-half lakh teachers and academic staff of private institutes under the AICTE will also benefit.

153. World's largest religious and cultural human congregation - Kumbh Mela begins in UP

The world's largest religious and cultural human congregation -Kumbh 2019 has begun with the holy dip at Sangam, the confluence of rivers Ganga, Yamuna and mythical Saraswati at Prayagraj. The first bathing was taken by saints and seers of different Akharas. According to Kumbh Mela administration around one crore 25 lakh devotees area expected on this Royal bathing Makar Sankranti.

Twenty-one Snan Ghats have been set up for bathing. Special arrangements have been made for women devotees and for the first time three women police units have been pressed into service. More than one lakh twenty thousand toilets have been erected for making Clean Kumbh. Kumbh Mela or Kumbha Mela is a mass Hindu pilgrimage of faith in which Hindus gather to bathe in a sacred or holy river. Traditionally, four fairs are widely recognized as the Kumbh Melas: the Prayagraj Kumbh Mela, Haridwar Kumbh Mela, the Nashik-Trimbakeshwar Simhastha, and Ujjain Simhastha.

154. Prime Minister to inaugurate the project “Development of Spiritual Circuit: Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple-Aranmula-Sabarimala” in Kerala

Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi will inaugurate the project “Development of Spiritual Circuit: Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple-Aranmula-Sabarimala” being implemented under the Swadesh Drashan Scheme of Ministry of Tourism, Government of India. The project ‘Development of Spiritual Circuit: Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple-Aranmula-Sabarimala’ was sanctioned by the Ministry of Tourism in 2016-17 for Rs. 92.22 Crores. Majority of work under this project has been carried out at the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple.

The Sree Padmanabaswamy Temple is one of the 108 divyadesams of Lord Vishnu. Swadesh Darshan scheme is one of the flagship schemes of Ministry of tourism for development of thematic circuits in the country in a planned and prioritised manner.

155. 2-day Global Aviation Summit 2019 to take off in Mumbai

This will be the first-of-its-kind event in the world with participation from more than 86 countries. India is among the fastest growing aviation sector and Vision 2040 for aviation sector and the Air Cargo Policy will also be unveiled during the summit. The Global Aviation Summit with a theme “Flying for all - especially the next 6 Billion”, being organised by Ministry of Civil Aviation in association with FICCI.

156. January 15: Army Day

India celebrates Army India on January 15. Army Day is celebrated to salute the valiant soldiers who sacrificed their lives to protect the country and its Citizens. It is in recognition of Field Marshal K M. Cariappa taking over as the first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army from General Sir Francis Butcher, the last British Commander-in-Chief of India, on 15 January 1949. For the first time in the history of Indian Army, Lieutenant Bhavana Kasturi will lead the Indian Army’s Service Corps (ASC) contingent and Captain Shikha Surabhi, a female officer, will be leading the Army’s Daredevils Motorcycle Display team comprising 33 men riding nine bikes in a pyramid formation.

157. Multi-Modal Logistics Park (MMLP) in Jharsuguda to be dedicated to the Nation

The Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi will visit Balangir in Odisha on 15 January, 2019. He will dedicate Multi-Modal Logistics Park (MMLP) Jharsugudaand other developmental projects to the Nation. The Prime Minister will inaugurate a new railway line from Balangir-Bichupali. He will also lay foundation stone for permanent building at KendriyaVidhyalaya, Sonepur.

The Multi-Modal Logistics Park (MMLP) at Jharsuguda is built at a cost of Rs 100 Crores. It will facilitate EXIM and Domestic cargo including Private Freight Traffic. MMLP is located adjacent to Howrah- Mumbai which is 5 km from Jharsuguda Railway Station.

158. Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to dedicate Kollam bypass in Kerala

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi will dedicate to the nation the 13 km, 2 lane Kollam bypass on NH-66 in Kerala. Constructed at a cost of Rs 352 core, this highway has three major bridges over Ashtamudi Lake. The project will ease traffic congestion around Kollam town and reduce the travel time between Alappuzha and Thiruvananthapuram.

Some of the landmark ongoing National Highways projects in the state include the Thiruvananthapuram Bypass, Thalassery-Mahe Bypass, Kuthiran Tunnel along Wadakkanchery –Thrissur section of NH-544, Alappuzha bypass on NH66. These projects, on completion, will create new socio- economic opportunities for the people and boost trade and tourism in this region.

159. Central Government Appoints 14th January, 2019 as The Date on Which Provisions of Constitution (One Hundred and Third Amendment) Act, 2019 shall come in to force

In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (2) of section 1 of the Constitution (One Hundred and Third Amendment) Act, 2019, the Central Government hereby appoints the 14th January, 2019 as the date on which the provisions of the said Act shall come into force.

Economic reservation in jobs and education is proposed to be provided by inserting clause (6) in Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution. The proposed Article 15(6) enables State to make special provisions for advancement of any economically weaker section of citizens, including reservations in educational institutions. It states that such reservation can be made in any educational institution, including private institutions, whether aided or unaided, except minority educational institutions covered under Article 30(1).

160. Regional Centre of National Institute of Public Cooperation and Child Development (NIPCCD)

Smt. Maneka Sanjay Gandhi inaugurated 5th Regional Centre of National Institute of Public Cooperation and Child Development (NIPCCD) at Mohali, Punjab. The Union Minister of Women and Child Development, Smt. Maneka Sanjay Gandhi stressed upon the need for training and development of elected women representatives of Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) to ensure that fruit of development may reach the grassroots level through their active participation and actual empowerment

NIPCCD is a premier organisation devoted to promotion of voluntary action, research, training, and documentation in the overall domain of women and children development.NIPCCD already has four such Regional Centres one each at Bangalore, Guwahati, Indore and Lucknow besides the Headquarters at New Delhi.

161. Dr. T.C.A Anant takes Oath of Office and Secrecy as Member, UPSC

Dr. T.C.A Anant, former Chief Statistician of India & Secretary, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, took the Oath of Office and Secrecy as Member, Union Public Service Commission (UPSC). The Oath was administered by Shri Arvind Saxena, Chairman,UPSC.

Dr. Anant’s academic background includes Ph. D from Cornell University and Masters in Economics from Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi. Prior to his appointment as Chief Statistician, Dr. Anant served as Professor at Delhi School of Economics for more than a decade. Dr. Anant has served in a number of Expert Committees of various Ministries and Agencies of Government of India.

162. India, 5 Central Asian Nations Back Inclusive Peace Process in Afghanistan

India and the five Central Asia nations have backed an inclusive peace process in Afghanistan that is Afghan-owned and Afghan-led. The understanding was reached at the first ever India-Central Asia Dialogue in Uzbekistan capital Samarkand. The Dialogue was chaired by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Uzbek counterpart Abdulaziz Kamilov. It was attended by the Foreign Ministers of Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan and the First Deputy Foreign Minister of Kazakhstan.

Ms Swaraj reiterated India's commitment to the economic reconstruction of war-torn Afghanistan. She pointed out that no business development, no investment can take place in a country suffering from terrorism.

163. Shri Arun Jaitley Inaugurated Hunar Haat

Finance Minister Shri ArunJaitley and Union Minority Affairs Minister Shri Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi inaugurated “HunarHaat”. This HunarHaat has been organised at State Emporia Complex, Baba Kharak Singh Marg, Connaught Place, New Delhi from 12th to 20th January, 2019. Ministry of Minority Affairs is organizing this “HunarHaat”.

“HunarHaat” has proved to be a “credible brand” of “Indigenous Talent” of Indian artisans and craftsmen. “HunarHaat” has ensured “Development with Dignity” of artisans and craftsmen of the country. During the last one year, “HunarHaat”, organised at various parts of the country, has been successful in providing employment opportunities to about 1 lakh 62 thousand artisans and other people associated with them.

164. Gujarat becomes 1st state to implement 10% quota to EWS

Gujarat Government has announced that the benefits of 10 per cent quota for Economically Weaker sections of general category in educational institutions and government jobs will be applicable from midnight tonight. In an official statement, State Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said, the decision has been taken for social equanimity.

Official release said that this 10 per cent quota for the economically weaker class from the general category will be over and above the existing 49 per cent quota for SC, ST and OBC. The Centre had taken the decision under Article 46 of Guiding Principles of Constitution of India after Amendment of the Articles 15 and 16, incorporating 10 per cent reservation for Economically Weaker Sections.

165. Govt drafts five-year action plan to address drug abuse in the country

The government has drafted a five-year action plan to address the problem of drug and substance abuse in the country. An official of the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment said, the National Action Plan for Drug Demand Reduction, 2018 to 2023, aims to employ a multi-pronged strategy to address the issue. It involves education, de-addiction and rehabilitation of affected individuals and their families.

The Ministry has planned several measures, including co-ordination with implementing agencies for controlling the sale of sedatives, painkillers and muscle relaxant drugs, and checking the online sale of drugs. The move comes after the Ministry withdrew the draft National Drug Demand Reduction Policy from the Cabinet. It had been pending for more than five-and-half years and was redrafted twice during the period.

166. IMD working to create models to forecast thunderstorms in advance

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) and other agencies of the Ministry of Earth Sciences are working to create models to forecast occurrence of thunderstorms six to 12 hours in advance.IMD Additional Director General Mritunjay Mohapatra said, a team of scientists of the deparment, the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology and the National Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting are working on models that could forecast probability of thunderstorms well in advance.

Mr Mohapatra also said, the IMD is contemplating sending on thunderstorms through Twitter. Last year in May, over 200 people died in thunderstorm incidents. In Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh alone, violent winds had killed nearly 180 people last year.

167. National Youth Parliament Festival 2019 launched

Minister of State (I/C) for Youth Affairs and Sports Col Rajyavardhan Rathore (Retd) launched the National Youth Parliament Festival 2019, thereby beginning the celebration of the National Youth Day 2019. National Youth Parliament Festival 2019 is organised on the theme of “Be The Voice of New India” and “Find solutions and contribute to policy”.

The National Youth Parliament Festival 2019 will be conducted at three levels: District Youth Parliament (DYP) at the district level. State Youth Parliament (SYP) at the State Level. National Youth Parliament (NYP) at the National Level.

168. Three-day 6th ‘Women of India Organic Festival’ inaugurated at Leisure Valley, Chandigarh

The Ministry of Women and Child Development is organising the three-day 6th ‘Women of India Organic Festival’, at Leisure Valley, Sector-10, Chandigarh, to celebrate and promote women farmers and entrepreneurs in the organic sector from the remotest parts of India.

The festival aims to encourage Indian women entrepreneurs and farmers to connect with more buyers and thus, empower them through financial inclusion, while promoting organic culture in India. Through this festival, the Ministry also aims to educate people about its various initiatives and schemes relating to women and children,” The Women of India Organic Festival has been held annually in New Delhi since 2015, and makes its debut in Chandigarh this year.

169. VP Naidu inaugurates 25th edition of Partnership Summit 2019 in Mumbai

Governor of Maharashtra C. Vidyasagar Rao and Union Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu, and other dignitaries were present on the occasion. New India Rising to Global Occasions is the theme of inaugural session of the Summit.

The summit is expected to build new partnerships and explore investment opportunities in sectors like Artificial Intelligence, big data, food processing, defense, aeronautics, renewable energy and tourism. New India Rising to Global Occasions is the theme of inaugural session of the Summit.

170. Tulsi Gabbard, the first Hindu elected to US Congress to run for President in 2020

Tulsi Gabbard, the first Hindu elected to US Congress and a four-time Democratic lawmaker, has said she will run for President in 2020, becoming the latest member of her party to challenge Republican President Donald Trump.

Gabbard, 37 years old , said she will formally announce her candidacy within a week. The Iraq War veteran is the second woman after Senator Elizabeth Warren to enter the presidential race from the Democratic party.

171. Sanskriti Kumbh

The Uttar Pradesh Governor Shri Ram Naik inaugurated the Sanskriti Kumbh at Prayagraj. The Sanskriti Kumbh celebrates the conglomeration of Spiritual Consciousness and Cultural Heritage of India in the main premises of Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj.

It is being organised by the Ministry of Culture, Government of India under the Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat initiative. The Sanskriti Kumbh is aimed at showcasing the vibrancy of India. The Sanskriti Kumbh will give a chance to people to experience all the colours of India at one place.

172. All India Radio organises National Symposium of Poets

The 64th National Symposium of Poets, organised by All India Radio, started in Chennai. 23 poets, representing all 22 languages in the Ninth Schedule of the Indian Constitution are participating in the symposium. The Director General of All India Radio, Mr Fayyaz Sheryar recalled the glorious tradition of the Kavi Sammelan. He noted that this is the first time the event is being held in Chennai.

The special programme based on the event is to be aired by the public service broadcaster AIR, on the eve of the Republic Day, the 25th of this month. All India Radio (AIR), officially known since 1956 as Akasha Vaṇi ("Voice from the Sky") is the national public radio broadcaster of India and is a division of Prasar Bharati. It was established in 1930. All India Radio is the largest radio network in the world, and one of the largest broadcasting organizations in the world in terms of the number of languages broadcast.

173. Committee on Section 126 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951

The Committee constituted under the chairmanship of Sr. Deputy Election Commissioner Sh. Umesh Sinha to review and suggest modifications and changes in the provisions of the Section 126 and other sections of the Representation of the People Act 1951, provisions of Model Code of Conduct and any other ECI instruction in this regard has submitted its report on 10th January, 2019 to the Commission.

The Committee had the following scope of work: Study and examine the present provisions of the Section 126 and other related Sections of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 and identify difficulties/critical gaps to regulate the violation of the said provisions of the act, particularly during the prohibitory period of 48 hours before the completion of the poll, mentioned in section 126 and suggest necessary amendment/modification.The recommendations made by the Committee, when implemented (after adoption by the ECI with necessary modification or additions), will help in minimizing the possible interference of activities which aim at indirectly influencing voters during the valuable silence period of 48 hours provided to them.

174. Indus Food 2019

INDUS FOOD-II with the theme of ‘World Food Supermarket’ will be held on 14th and 15th January, 2019, at India Expo Mart, Greater Noida. The event is aimed at promoting India as a strong and reliable exporter of food and beverage products to the world. INDUS FOOD 2019 will promote value addition to India’s agriculture exports and integrate Indian farmers and agricultural products with global value chains.

INDUS FOOD is a global platform where top exporters from Food and Beverage Industry of India will be participating and buyers from across the world have been invited. After the success of the first edition of INDUS FOOD in 2018, Trade Promotion Council of India (TPCI) has scaled up the Reverse Buyers-Sellers Meet (RBSM) with the financial assistance under Market Access Initiative (MAI) scheme of Department of Commerce.

175. Union Government launched National Clean Air Programme (NCAP)

Air pollution is one of the biggest global environmental challenges of today. A time bound national level strategy for pan India implementation to tackle the increasing air pollution problem across the country in a comprehensive manner in the form of National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) was launched by Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan in New Delhi.

The NCAP will be a mid-term, five-year action plan with 2019 as the first year. The program will partner with multilateral and bilateral international organizations, and philanthropic foundations and leading technical institutions to achieve its outcomes. The approach for NCAP includes collaborative, multi-scale and cross-sectoral coordination between the relevant central ministries, state governments and local bodies.

176. Cabinet approves creation of the post of Vice Chancellor for National Rail & Transport Institute

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved creation of the post of Vice Chancellor for India's first rail and transportation university, National Rail & Transport Institute (NRTI). The Vice-Chancellor shall be the Principal Executive Officer of the institution and shall exercise general supervision and control over the affairs of the institution and shall be mainly responsible for implementation of the decisions of all the authorities of the Institution.

The National Rail and Transportation Institute (NRTI) is India’s first railway university located in Vadodara, Gujarat. This institute is located in the National Academy of Indian Railway (NAIR). NRTI is focused on developing global and national partnerships with top universities and organizations from across the world.

177. Six States sign agreement for Renukaji Multipurpose Dam Project

An agreement for Renukaji Dam Multipurpose Project signed among the states of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand. The project is aimed at meeting the drinking water needs of these states. Under it, three storage projects are proposed to be constructed on the river Yamuna and two of its tributaries - Tons and Giri in the hilly regions of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. These include Lakhwar project on river Yamuna in Uttarakhand, Kishau on river Tons in Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh and Renukaji on river Giri in Himachal Pradesh.

The projects were conceived in 2008. Most of the irrigation cost and the drinking water component of these projects will be funded by the central government. In addition to this a concession agreement will also be signed for Namami Gange projects for the city of Prayagraj under Hybrid Annuity Mode and One City One Operator Concept.

 

178. Pranav R Mehta became President of the Global Solar Council

Pranav R Mehta, President of the National Solar Energy Federation of India has become the president of the Global Solar Council. He has become the first Indian to head the Global Solar Council. Global Solar Council is an international non-profit association of the national, regional and international associations in solar energy and the world's leading corporations. The Global Solar Council headquartered in Washington D.C., USA, came into being following the historic United Nations Climate Change Conference (UN COP 21).

National Solar Energy Federation of India is an umbrella organization of all solar energy stakeholders of India working in the area of policy advocacy for Solar Energy. National Solar Energy Federation of India aims to provide a platform at the National level for addressing all issues connected with solar energy growth in India.

179. PM launched Gangajal Project to Provide Better and More Assured Water Supply in Agra

Giving a major push to develop and enhance Tourism infrastructure in Agra, the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi launched a series of development projects worth Rs. 2900 Crores for the Agra city and the adjoining areas.

The Prime Minister dedicated to the nation, Gangajal project, which will provide Agra with better and more assured water supply, at an estimated cost of Rs.2880 crores. Gangajal project aims to bring 140 cusecs of Ganga water to Agra. This will help meet the drinking water demands in the city. Prime Minister laid the foundation Stone of Integrated Command and Control Centre for Agra Smart City. In this project CCTVs will be installed throughout Agra City for monitoring and surveillance for the purpose of safety and security.

Agra is a major tourist destination because of its many Mughal-era buildings, most notably the Taj Mahal, Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri, all of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.Agra is included on the Golden Triangle tourist circuit, along with Delhi and Jaipur. Sultan Sikandar Lodī (1488–1517) was the first to move his capital from Delhi to Agra in 1506. He governed the country from here and Agra assumed the importance of the second capital.

180. The Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty Fourth Amendment) Bill, 2019

The Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty-Fourth Amendment) Bill, 2019 was introduced in Lok Sabha by the Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment, Mr. Thaawar Chand Gehlot on January 8, 2019. The Bill seeks to provide for the advancement of “economically weaker sections” of citizens.

The Bill seeks to amend Article 15 to additionally permit the government to provide for the advancement of “economically weaker sections”. Further, up to 10% of seats may be reserved for such sections for admission in educational institutions. Such reservation will not apply to minority educational institutions. The Bill seeks to amend Article 16 to permit the government to reserve up to 10% of all posts for the “economically weaker sections” of citizens.

Article 15 of the Constitution prohibits discrimination against any citizen on the grounds of race, religion, caste, sex, or place of birth. However, the government may make special provisions for the advancement of socially and educationally backward classes, or for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. Article 16 of the Constitution prohibits discrimination in employment in any government office. However, the government can allow reservation for any “backward class of citizens”, if they are not adequately represented in the services under the state.

181. Textiles Minister Meets Participants of Know India Programme

Participants of 51st edition of Know India Programmes (KIP) called on the Union Minister of Textiles, Smriti Zubin Irani, in New Delhi. This edition of KIP has been scheduled from January 5th to 29th January, 2019 in partnership with Gujarat. The participants will also visit Gujarat for 10-days from January 10thto 19thJanuary, 2019.

The KIP is a 25-day orientation programme organized by the Ministry of External Affairs in partnership with the states of India. It is an initiative of the Government of India with an aim to engage the students and young professionals of Indian diaspora in the age group of 18 to 30 to connect with their motherland. The main objective is to motivate and inspire young minds and to give them an exposure to various aspects of India’s art, heritage and culture and to promote awareness about different facets of life in the country and the progress made by India in various fields.

182. Women and Child Development Ministry launches “Web- Wonder Women” Campaign

The Ministry of Women and Child Development, Government of India, has launched an online campaign, ‘#www : Web- WonderWomen’. The Campaign aims to discover and celebrate the exceptional achievements of women, who have been driving positive agenda of social change via social media. Through the campaign, the Ministry and the Campaign’s Partners aim to recognize the fortitude of Indian women stalwarts from across the globe who have used the power of social media to run positive & niche campaigns to steer a change in society. This Campaign will recognize and acknowledge the efforts of these meritorious Women.

183. Jaitley inaugurates electric vehicle charging station

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley inaugurated electric vehicle charging station at North Block in New Delhi and hands over the electric vehicle to Finance Ministry officials. Department of Economic Affairs, has signed an agreement with Energy Efficiency Services Limited for deployment of 15 Electric Vehicles for their officers.

With the induction of these electric vehicles, Department of Economic Affairs is expected to save over 36,000 litres of fuel every year and will also lead to a reduction of over 440 tonnes of carbon dioxide.

The Finance Ministry also signed an agreement with Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), an entity under the Ministry of Power, for the deployment of 15 Electric Vehicles for their officers. The Department of Expenditure has also issued an office memorandum for all the government offices in Delhi/NCR to switch to electric vehicles.

184. Indian Institute of Technology-Madras (IIT-M) have recreated space fuel by simulating interstellar conditions in the laboratory

The researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology-Madras (IIT-M) have recreated space fuel by simulating interstellar conditions in the laboratory. It is a big breakthrough for India in the exploration of cleaner and sustainable alternatives to fossil fuel. The discovery has the potential to convert atmospheric carbon dioxide into a next-generation energy source to curb greenhouse gases and global warming.

The research of the IIT-M in this regard has been published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). Such hydrates especially that of methane, are thought to be the future sources of fuel. Many nations across the world including India have programmes to explore hydrates in the ocean bed.

Clathrate hydrates are molecules like methane, carbon dioxide, etc, trapped in well-defined cages of water molecules forming crystalline solids. They are formed at high pressures and low temperatures at places such as the ocean floor, hundreds of metres below the sea level. They are also found in glaciers such as in Siberia.

185. National Bamboo Mission

The restructured National Bamboo Mission (NBM) was approved in April, 2018 for implementation till the end of 14th Finance Commission i.e. 2019-20 The scheme is being implemented in non-forest Government land, farmers' field in States where it has social, commercial and economical advantage, including the bamboo rich States of North Eastern region and Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Bihar, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.Financial assistance to North Eastern States is provided in the ratio of 90:10 between Central & State Government.

186. MoU between Indian Army and PNB

On 08 Jan 2019, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Indian Army and PNB on the Defence Salary Package. The signing ceremony was chaired by the Adjutant General, Lt Gen Ashwani Kumar and was attended by top dignitaries of PNB headed by Mr Naveen Kumar. A number of additional facilities have been incorporated in the MoU after concerted efforts. The Army hopes this MoU will benefit a large number of serving and retired Army personnel who have accounts with PNB and also provide them an opportunity to access modern banking facilities.

Punjab National Bank (PNB) is an Indian multinational banking and financial services company. It is a state-owned corporation based in New Delhi, India. The bank was founded in 1894. Sunil Mehta is its CEO and MD.

187. National Anti-Profiteering Authority (NAA)

The National Anti-Profiteering Authority (NAA) has been constituted under Section 171 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 to ensure that the reduction in rate of tax or the benefit of input tax credit is passed on to the recipient by way of commensurate reduction in prices. Further, the following steps have been taken by the NAA to ensure that customers get the full benefit of tax cuts:

Holding regular meetings with the Zonal Screening Committees and the Chief Commissioners of Central Tax to stress upon consumer awareness programmes; Launching a helpline to resolve the queries of citizens regarding registration of complaints against profiteering. Receiving complaints through email and NAA portal. Working with consumer welfare organizations in order to facilitate outreach activities.

The Authority’s main function is to ensure that traders are not realizing unfair profit by charging high price from consumers in the name of GST. The responsibility of NAA is to examine and check such profiteering activities and recommend punitive actions including cancellation of Registration.

188. Private FM channels allowed to carry All India Radio news

Information and Broadcasting Minister Rajyavardhan Rathore launched 'Sharing of All India Radio News with Private FM broadcasters' in New Delhi. Private FM channels can now carry All India Radio News free of cost on trial basis up to 31st May this year. News Services Division of All India Radio has permitted its news bulletins in English and Hindi to be carried in unaltered form by Private FM Channels as per certain terms and conditions.

Any private FM broadcaster who intends to broadcast the news bulletins will first register with All India Radio news. Details on registration and technical parameters are available on the website - newsonair.nic.in.

189. “Flying For All” Global Aviation Summit on 15-16 Jan 2019 in Mumbai

The International Civil Aviation Organization has predicted a 100 percent increase in global air travel by the year 2030, creating a need for extensive efforts to bring the entire aviation ecosystem to pace. To ride this strong tailwind of growth and pave the way forward for the sector, the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA), in collaboration with FICCI is organizing a Global Aviation Summit with an overarching theme of “Flying for all” on 15-16 January 2019 in Mumbai, the financial capital of India.

An official mobile application for Global Aviation Summit 2019 was launched by Shri Jayant Sinha, Minister of State for Civil Aviation, on 19th December, 2018. The GAS 2019 mobile application is available on Playstore and iOS.

190. Sittwe Port in Myanmar, constructed with India’s assistance, ready for operation

The construction of Sittwe Port is part of the Kaladan Multi Modal Transit Transport Project. Its objective is to create a multi-modal sea, river and road transport corridor for shipment of cargo from the eastern ports of India to Myanmar through Sittwe port as well as to North-Eastern part of India via Myanmar. Once fully operational, the project would encourage investment and trade and also open up alternate routes for connectivity to India’s North East Region.

The approved construction cost of Sittwe Port and Inland Water Terminals at Sittwe and Paletwa is Rs. 517.29 crore. A Bilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Government of India and Myanmar on 22nd October, 2018 for operationalization of the Port at Sittwe and Inland Water Transport (IWT) Terminals at Sittwe and Paletwa.

191. UGC decides to set up Consortium for Academic and Research Ethics (CARE) to refine and strengthen research publication

Credibility of Research Publications is extremely important because it has a direct impact upon the individual, institutional and National image. With an aim to refine and strengthen the University Grants Commission (UGC) approved list of journals, the UGC has issued a Public Notice dated 28th November 2018, and decided to establish a Consortium for Academic and Research Ethics (CARE).

The good quality Research Journals in disciplines under Social Sciences, Humanities, Languages, Arts, Culture, Indian Knowledge Systems etc., will be maintained by CARE and referred to as ‘CARE Reference List of Quality Journals’. UGC has constituted a Committee under the Chairmanship of Prof. P. Balram, to review its quality mandate relating to promotion of Research and to review the existing M.Phil/ Ph.D Regulations.

194. 4th Edition of Raisina Dialogue to begin in New Delhi

The fourth edition of the Raisina Dialogue will begin in New Delhi on 08 January. Ministry of External Affairs in partnership with Observer Research Foundation is organizing the flagship annual geopolitical and geostrategic conference. The theme of the Dialogue this year is "A World Reorder: New Geometries; Fluid Partnerships; Uncertain Outcomes”. Norway Prime Minister Ms Erna Solberg will deliver inaugural address in presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.

The Raisina Dialogue is a multilateral conference committed to addressing the most challenging issues facing the global community. Every year, global leaders in policy, business, media and civil society are hosted in New Delhi to discuss cooperation on a wide range of pertinent international policy matters. The conference is hosted by the Observer Research Foundation in collaboration with the Government of India, Ministry of External Affairs.

195. Joint Parliamentary Committee report on Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2016 tabled in Lok Sabha

The report of the joint Parliamentary committee on the citizenship (amendment) bill, 2016 has been tabled in Lok Sabha.It is listed to be tabled in Rajya Sabha as well. The Bill amends the Citizenship Act, 1955 to make illegal migrants who are Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan, eligible for citizenship.

The Bill relaxes the 11 year requirement of residing in India, to just 6 years for the above migrants. The Bill also makes amendments to provisions related to Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) cardholders. The Bill amends the Act to allow cancellation of OCI registration if the person has violated any law.

Part II of the Constitution of India (Articles 5-11) deals with the Citizenship of India. Article 5 speaks about citizenship of India at the commencement of the Constitution (Nov 26, 1949). Article 11 gave powers to the Parliament of India to regulate the right of citizenship by law. Thus Citizenship Act 1955 was enacted by the Parliament.

 

196. NCR launches mobile app to help people navigate through Prayagraj city during Kumbh Mela

The North Central Railway, NCR has launched a mobile application to help people navigate through Prayagraj city during Kumbh Mela starting from January 15. 'Rail Kumbh Seva Mobile App' will also provide information regarding all the 'Mela special' trains that will be run during the period.

Additionally, the app will provide a link to the user to buy both unreserved and reserved train tickets. Through this app, the users will not only get to know their current location, but will also be able to reach to all railway stations, the mela zone, major hotels, bus stations and other facilities within Prayagraj.

Kumbh Mela or Kumbha Mela is a mass Hindu pilgrimage of faith in which Hindus gather to bathe in a sacred or holy river. Traditionally, four fairs are widely recognized as the Kumbh Melas: the Prayag Kumbh Mela, Haridwar Kumbh Mela, the Nashik-Trimbakeshwar Simhastha, and Ujjain Simhastha.

197. High-level Committee Notified on Assam Accord

The government has notified a High-Level Committee for implementation of Clause six of the Assam Accord. The clause envisaged that appropriate constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards, should be provided to protect, preserve and promote the cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the people of Assam.

The nine-member committee, comprising of eminent Assamese persons from different fields, is headed by former bureaucrat MP Bezbarauah. The committee will examine the effectiveness of actions since 1985 to implement Clause 6 of the Assam Accord.

The Assam Accord was a Memorandum of Settlement signed between representatives of the Government of India and the leaders of the Assam Movement in New Delhi on 15 August 1985.

198. Yarn Bank Scheme

The Ministry of Textiles, Government of India had launched a Yarn Bank Scheme as one of the components of PowerTex India scheme with an aim to avoid fluctuation in yarn price. Under the scheme, an interest-free corpus fund up to Rs.2.00 crore would be provided to the Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV)/Consortium formed by power loom waivers. PowerTex India is a comprehensive scheme for power loom sector development.

199. UN observes First-Ever World Braille Day on 4 January

The United Nations observed the first official World Braille Day on 4th January to create awareness about the importance of Braille for approximately 1.3 billion people living with some form of distance or near vision impairment. The proclamation for the celebration of World Braille Day was made by the United Nations General Assembly as a means for realising the human rights of visually-impaired and partially-sighted people, and bringing written language to the forefront as a critical prerequisite for promoting fundamental freedoms. World Braille Day is celebrated on the January 4th to honour Louis Braille, who is credited for inventing the Braille script. Louis Braille was born in France on 4 January 1809. The World Braille Day is celebrated on his Birth Anniversary.

200. The 6th ‘Women of India Organic Festival’

The Ministry of Women and Child Development will be hosting the 6th ‘Women of India Organic Festival’ from 12th to 14th January, 2019, at Leisure Valley in Chandigarh, to celebrate and promote women farmers and entrepreneurs in the organic sector from the remotest parts of India.

“The festival aims to encourage Indian women entrepreneurs and farmers to connect with more buyers and thus, empower them through financial inclusion, while promoting organic culture in India. Through this festival, the Ministry also aims to educate people about its various initiatives and schemes relating to women and children,”. The Women of India Organic Festival has been held annually in New Delhi since 2015, and makes its debut in Chandigarh this year.

201. PM lays foundation stone of revival of North Koel project at Palamu in Jharkhand

Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of revival of North Koel (Mandal Dam) project amounting to Rupees 2500 crore and Kanhar Stone Pipeline irrigation system at Palamu in Jharkhand.

The Mandal Dam project will help around one lakh 11 thousand hectares of agricultural land in Jharkhand and Bihar to get irrigation facilities and 24 MW of electricity will also be produced.

202. 4677 PMBJP Kendras functional in 35 States/UTs of the country by end of year 2018

As on 31.12.2018, 4677 ‘Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Pariyojana’ (PMBJP) Kendras are functional in 35 States/UTs of the country. PMBJP was launched by the Department of Pharmaceuticals, Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, Government of India with an objective of making available quality generic medicines at affordable prices to all. Under this scheme, unbranded generic medicines of good quality are made available through outlets called PMBJP Kendras. In order to ensure quality of medicines sold through PMBJP Kendras, the medicines are procured only from WHO-GMP certified manufacturers.

203. PM inaugurated the 106th session of Indian Science Congress

Reflecting on the theme of the event this year - ‘Future India: Science and Technology’ - the Prime Minister said that India's true strength will be in connecting its science, technology and innovation, with its people. He recalled the great Indian scientists of the past, including Acharyas J.C. Bose, C.V. Raman, Meghnad Saha, and S.N. Bose, and said that they served the people through "minimum resources" and "maximum struggle."

The Prime Minister recalled our former Prime Ministers Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri ji and Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji. He said that Shastri ji gave us the slogan: "Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan," while Atal ji added "Jai Vigyan" to it. He said that now the time has come to take a step further, by adding "Jai Anusandhan." The 105th session of Indian Science Congress was held in Imphal, Manipur.The theme of this session was “Reaching the Unreached through Science & Technology”.

204. India Pharma 2019 & India Medical Device 2019 to be held in Bengaluru on 18th– 19thFebruary

The Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP), Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, along with Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI), is organising the 4th International Conference on Pharmaceutical & Medical Device sector on 18th – 19th February, 2019 in Bengaluru.

The theme for India Pharma 2019 is ‘Enabling Quality Affordable Healthcare’ and that of India Medical Device 2019 is ‘Med-Tech India: Gearing up for Ayushman Bharat’.“Endeavor of the Government is to provide affordable quality healthcare for all and boost indigenous pharma sector through ‘Make in India’. In this direction, Cabinet has given approval for 100 % FDI under automatic route for manufacturing of medical devices”, The 3rd edition of ‘India Pharma & India Medical Device 2018’ was also organized in Bangalore with theme ‘Affordable and Quality Healthcare’.

205. Shri Ram Vilas Paswan chairs Consultative Committee Meeting of Members of Parliament on National Sugar Institute, Kanpur

The Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Shri Ram Vilas Paswan chaired the meeting of Consultative Committee of Members of Parliament attached with the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution. The Consultative Committee Meeting reviewed the functioning of National Sugar Institute established at Kanpur.

The institute which is a subordinate office of the Ministry performs the main functions of teaching, training, consultancy, research and preparation of Standards for Sugar. The National Sugar Institute established in 1936, is involved in research, training and advisory services to the sugar and allied industry, and functions under the Department of Food and Public Distribution of the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution.

206. Ministry of HRD constitutes a task force to look into the issue of JNV suicides

The Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas (JNVs) are fully residential schools managed and run by the Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti, an autonomous organization under the Ministry of Human Resource Development. Recently, a news report had appeared in a leading newspaper regarding suicides by the students of JNVs over the last few years.

Taking cognizance of the incidents of suicides by the students of JNVs, the Ministry of Human Resource Development has constituted a Task Force under the Chairmanship of Dr. Jitendra Nagpal, Psychiatrist. Besides, the Ministry has sent a proposal to engage two full time counselors (one male and one female) in each of the 630 functional JNVs to the Department of Expenditure for approval. Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas are a system of alternate schools for gifted students in India. They are run by Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti, New Delhi, an autonomous organization under the Department of School Education and Literacy, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India. It was founded by Rajiv Gandhi in 1985. It's motto 'Pragyanam Brahma'.

207. Indian Panorama Film Festival

The Indian Panorama Film Festival is being organized from 4th to 13th January, 2019. The ten-day Festival is being organized by the Directorate of Film Festivals, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting at Siri Fort Auditorium II, New Delhi. The Festival will be inaugurated by Secretary, Ministry of I&B, Shri Amit Khare. All the films selected under the Indian Panorama section in the 49th International Film Festival of India will be screened during the Festival.

208. Bhoomi Rashi Portal

The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has recently launched the BhoomiRashi portal. In the past years, acquisition of land for the purpose of National Highway projects, payment of compensation to the land owners etc were done manually by physical movement of documents in the form of files. However, in that procedure some constraints viz. delay in issuing notification, errors in the land/area details etc were being faced.

In order to overcome these issues, to cut short delays and avoid parking of public funds with the Competent Authority for Land Acquisition (CALA), Ministry has developed a web based Utility –BhoomiRashi to fully digitize and automate the entire process of land acquisition. With the operation of this Portal, the land acquisition process has been expedited significantly, become error-free and more transparent and the notifications at every stage are being processed on real time basis.

209. Arunima Sinha becomes world’s first woman amputee to scale Mount Vinson

Arunima Sinha, the Indian mountaineer who became the world’s first woman amputee to climb Mount Everest in 2013, has now become the first woman amputee to climb Mount Vinson (highest peak of Antarctica). Sinha is a national level volleyball player who had one of her legs amputated in 2011 after she was pushed from a running train by dacoits she had resisted. She had earlier said that she planned to scale six peaks in six continents. “My objective is to climb six peaks in six continents. I still feel pain in my body at times. I have a plate and a rod inserted.” A Padmashri awardee, Sinha had earlier scaled five peaks including Mt Everest, Mt Kilimanjaro, Mt Ebrus, Mt Kosciuszko and Mt Aconcagua.

210. Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana achieves 6 crore mark

In order to provide clean cooking fuel to BPL households in the country, the Government has launched “Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana”(PMUY) scheme to provide 5 Crore deposit-free LPG connections to women belonging to the Below Poverty Line (BPL) families, which were subsequently increased to 8 Crore with a budgetary allocation of Rs. 12800 crore.

The initial target of 5 crore connections was achieved well before the target i.e.31st March, 2019. Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) was launched in May 2016. The initial target set for the scheme was to provide 50 million LPG connections to below poverty line (BPL) families by 2019, by giving financial assistance of Rs 1600 per family. PMUY implementation has been appreciated by the World Health Organization (WHO) and termed it as a decisive intervention to check the indoor health pollution being faced by the women of the country.

211. Veer Savarkar International Airport in Port Blair declared as an authorized Immigration Check post

Veer Savarkar International Airport in Port Blair has been declared as an authorized Immigration Check post for entry into/exit from India with valid travel documents for all classes of passengers. This decision of the Union Government will open up the Port Blair Airport for direct international flight and immigration facilities. For this purpose, the Superintendent of Police (CID), Andaman and Nicobar Police has been appointed as the ‘Civil Authority’ for the purpose of the immigration check post. Savarkar (1883 to 1966) was a revolutionary who spent many years in prison in the Andamans. He propounded the philosophy of Hindutva. In 1901, he joined the Ferguson College in Pune and set up the Abhinav Bharat Society, which preached a revolutionary struggle against the British.

212. Union Cabinet approves proposed amendment to The Trade Unions Act

The Union Cabinet approved the proposed amendments to the Trade Unions Act 1926, aimed at giving statutory backing to central and state-level trade unions. The proposed Bill, likely be introduced in the ongoing winter session of Parliament, has provisions for recognising central trade unions by various government departments, at both the central and state levels. There are provisions empowering the Centre to frame rules for recognising unions and resolving disputes involving them.

Unions are not recognised under the Trade Unions Act, originally enacted in 1926. The office of the chief central labour commissioner conducts a verification drive of the membership, based on which the labour and employment ministry gives them the status of central trade unions. However, there is no statutory provision for either the recognition of a trade union in industry, or the establishment or recognition of a union at the central and state level.

213. Yogi Government Clears "Cow Cess" To Protect Stray Cattle In UP

The government has planned temporary cow sheds (gaushalas) in all villages, panchayats, municipalities, nagar panchayats and municipal corporations. The Uttar Pradesh cabinet on Tuesday approved a plan to set up and run temporary 'gauvansh ashray asthals' under the urban and rural civic bodies in order to take proper care of stray cattle. In every district, both urban and rural areas, a cowshed with capacity of minimum 1,000 animals will be built and for this a total of 2 per cent "cow welfare cess" will be imposed on excise, mandi parishad, profitable corporations and others.

214. US, Israel quit UNESCO citing bias

The United States and Israel officially quit the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) with the close of 2018. The countries had announced their decisions in 2017 of withdrawing from the agency, accusing it of bias against Israel. America has demanded fundamental reform in UNESCO, which was co-founded by it after World War II to foster peace.

Israel joined the agency in 1949. It is best known for its World Heritage program, which designates cultural sites and aims to preserve traditions. UNESCO also works to improve education for girls, promote understanding of the Holocaust's horrors, and to defend media freedom. The withdrawals will not greatly impact UNESCO financially since it has been dealing with a funding slash ever since 2011 when both Israel and the US stopped paying dues after Palestine was voted in as a member state.

215. Pakistan, India exchange list of nuclear installations

India and Pakistan exchanged the list of nuclear installations and facilities covered under the Agreement on the Prohibition of Attack against Nuclear installations between them. This is the 28th consecutive exchange of such lists between the two nuclear-armed neighbours since the first one on January 1, 1992. The list was exchanged through diplomatic channels simultaneously at New Delhi and Islamabad. Under the 1988 agreement, the two countries inform each other of nuclear installations and facilities on the first of January every year.

216. Qatar will cease to be a member of OPEC

Qatar will cease to be a member of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. The country had sent an official notification to the OPEC expressing its wish to pull out and to focus on its liquefied natural gas production in December.

The decision came amid the ongoing diplomatic and economic blockade imposed on the country by its Persian Gulf neighbours and several Arab states. These countries accuse Doha of supporting terrorism and interfering in their internal affairs. Qatar has strongly refuted these allegations.

 

217. India to achieve 100 per cent electrification before 2019 Republic Day

India is likely to achieve 100 per cent household electrification before 2019 Republic Day. India has already provided electricity access to 2.39 crore out of the targeted 2.49 crore households under the Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana, Saubhagya scheme.

India has achieved the hundred per cent electrification of the households in 25 states by December 2018. About 10.48 lakh households are left to be electrified in 4 states of Assam, Rajasthan, Meghalaya and Chhattisgarh. The centre had launched the Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana, Saubhagya scheme to provide electricity to all households by December 2018.

218. Women’s wall for Gender Equality made in Kerala

On 1st January, around 30 lakh women stood shoulder to shoulder to form Vanitha Mathil, “women’s wall” that ran across the length of Kerala. The wall stretched from Kasaragod in the north to Thiruvananthapuram in the south for about 620 Kms. The event was organised by the Government of Kerala with the support of several political, religious and social groups. The participants at the Women’s Wall resolved to uphold the values of Kerala’s renaissance, ensure gender justice, and counter moves to turn the state into a lunatic asylum. The event was also a counterdemonstration against the agitations preventing women of menstruating age from entering the Sabarimala shrine in violation of the Supreme Court’s ruling.

 

 

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219. SBI Card and Etihad Guest launched premium card for international travel

SBI Card and Etihad Guest, have joined hands to launch a travel specific Visa credit card for members and Indian travellers. This is the first international co-brand partnership of SBI Card, the country's second largest credit card issuer.

The card will be available in two variants, Etihad Guest SBI Card and Etihad Guest SBI Premier Card. The card will bring an unmatched value proposition to Etihad Guest members and international travellers from India.

220. India ranks 6th in GDPR readiness index

India ranked sixth leading nation globally in the GDPR readiness index, according to latest ranking released by global networking leader Cisco. Nearly 65 per cent of Indian organisations are better prepared for the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The GDPR focused on increasing protection for EU residents' privacy and personal data, came into force in May 2018.

 

221. Bihar top state in terms of GDP growth in FY18

Bihar has been ranked the top state in terms of GSDP (Gross State Domestic Product) growth in financial year 2017-18, according to a report by Crisil. The state has topped the list with 11.3 percent GSDP growth in fiscal 2018. It was ranked at eighth spot in fiscal 2017 with 9.9 percent GSDP growth. The second spot has been secured by Andhra Pradesh, whose GSDP growth in FY18 jumped to 11.2 percent. Gujarat listed third with growth of 11.1 percent.

222. Cabinet approves recapitalization of Export-Import Bank of India

The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has approved the recapitalization of EXIM Bank. The details are as follows: Issuance of Recapitalization Bonds by Government of India to the tune of Rs.6,000 crore for capital infusion in Export Import Bank of India (Exim Bank).

The equity will be infused in two tranches of Rs. 4,500 crore in FY 2018-19 and Rs.1,500 crore in FY 2019-20 respectively. The Cabinet also approved an increase in the authorized capital of Exim Bank from Rs. 10,000 crore to Rs. 20,000 crore. The recapitalisation bonds will be on the lines issued to Public Sector Banks.

Exim Bank of India (Exim Bank) was established in 1982 under an Act of Parliament as the apex financial institution for financing, facilitating and promoting India's international trade. It is regulated by RBI. Exim Bank is the principal export credit agency for India.

223. PSU banks to bring down govt equity to 52%

The Finance Ministry has asked the public sector banks to gradually reduce the government’s equity to 52 per cent. Currently, some of the public sector banks have government’s holding beyond 75 per cent. The Ministry of Finance has authorized the Public Sector Banks to take necessary steps in bringing down the government equity based on the marketing conditions. A notification under the Securities Contracts Regulations (Amendment) Rules makes it mandatory for all listed entities to have a minimum public float of 25%.

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) was established under the provisions of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 on April 12, 1992. SEBI aims to protect the interests of investors in securities and to promote the development and regulate the securities market in the country.

 

 

224. India to become world's third largest consumer market by 2030: WEF

A report by World Economic Forum said that India is set to become the world's third largest consumer market behind only USA and China by 2030. The report said consumer spending in India is expected to grow from 1.5 trillion US dollar at present to six trillion US dollar by 2030. The report said that with the annual GDP growth rate of 7.5 percent, India is currently the world's sixth largest economy. The report titled 'Future of Consumption in Fast-Growth Consumer Market - India' also noted that growth of the middle class will lift nearly 25 million households out of poverty.

The World Economic Forum, based in Cologny-Geneva, Switzerland, was founded in 1971 as a not-for-profit organization. It gained formal status in January 2015 under the Swiss Host-State Act, confirming the role of the Forum as an International Institution for Public-Private Cooperation.

 

225. Asia Competitiveness Institute releases Ease of Doing Business Rankings for Indian states

The Asia competitiveness institute (ACI) has released the Ease of Doing Business Rankings for Indian states. Andhra Pradesh came on first position while Maharashtra and Delhi came on second and third position respectively. The weakest indicators for the state of Andhra Pradesh were Worker density, foreign direct investment per capital, labour productivity, and the illiteracy rate. Taking note of the findings of the report the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh has announced that the state government will consider the observations of the ACI EDB rankings report and strengthen the areas of weaknesses.

226. Cabinet approves merger of Vijaya Bank, Dena Bank with Bank of Baroda

The Cabinet has approved the merger of Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank with Bank of Baroda. The move will help create a strong globally competitive bank with economies of scale and enable the realization of wide-ranging synergies, leveraging of networks and low-cost deposits and substantial rise in customer base and operational efficiency.

The scheme will come into effect from 1st of April this year. The pay and allowances and services of the employees of all three banks will remain same as earlier.

  • Vijaya Bank - Headquarters - Bangalore
  • Dena Bank - Headquarters - Mumbai
  • Bank of Baroda - Headquarters - Vadodara

227. RBI launches SRPHi

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has launched Survey on Retail Payment Habits of Individuals (SRPHi). The Survey will capture payment habits of individuals in cities of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru and Guwahati. Sigma Research & Consulting Pvt Ltd has been engaged by RBI to conduct the fieldwork of the survey. Around 6000 individuals from various socio-economic backgrounds across six cities would be covered under the survey. The survey seeks qualitative responses from individuals on their payment habits. The findings of the survey will provide insights into awareness and usage habits of digital payment products.

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Current Affairs January 2019, January 2019 Current Affairs

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