October 15, 2019


  1. Indian Navy’s Training Squadron visiting Zanzibar and Tanzania
  • Indian Naval Ships Tir, Sujata and Shardul and Indian Coast Guard Ship Sarathi, are visiting Tanzania from 14 to 17 Oct 19.
  • These ships will visit Dar Es Salaam on 14 Oct 19 and Zanzibar from 15 to 17 Oct 19. This training squadron is visiting these areas under the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Southern Naval Command based at Kochi.
  • Training sessions include Navigation, Seamanship, Shiphandling, Boat Work and Engineering, imparted onboard the 1TS Ships, and Sail Training.
  1. India to achieve 10% blending percentage of ethanol in petrol by 2022
  • Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan announced that Government is pushing to achieve 10 per cent blending percentage of ethanol in petrol by 2022.
  • Petroleum Minister also highlighted that India is expected to get 58 billion dollar investment in the exploration and production sector by 2023.
  • The central government is expecting to receive investment of 60 billion dollars in the sector in the next few years.
  1. PM Modi chaired meeting on ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’ programme in New Delhi
  • The Prime Minister(PM) of India Shri Narendra Modi chaired the meeting on ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’ programme in New Delhi. The programme aims at enhancing interaction between people of different cultures from all the states and Union Territories(UT).
  • It is a personal initiative of PM Modi, highlighting India’s cultural diversity in unity and also aims to develop perspective on important issues and help in celebrating the nation’s regional culture.
  • The programme was first announced during the RashtriyaEkta Divas on October 31, 2015 on the 140th birth anniversary of Sardarvallabhaipatel, the first deputy prime minister of India who worked for the nation’s unity.
  • The 10th edition of the RashtriyaSanskritiMahotsav(RSM) under the Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat was inaugurated on October 14, 2019 in Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh(MP) by the MP governor Shri LaljiTandon in presence of Culture and Tourism minister Prahlad Singh Patel. The festival is organised second time in MP by culture ministry and will be held until October 21, 2019.
  1. BIS will rank state capitals, smart cities for quality tap water in next 3 months
  • On the event of World Standards Day, Consumer Affairs Minister Mr Ram Vilas Paswan notified that the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) will rank state capitals and 100 smart cities in the coming 3 months for quality tap water.

Key Points:

♦Quality of tap water at district level will also be tested in the next 6 months.

♦BIS standards will be made mandatory on drinking water. They were voluntary in nature until now.

♦Samples of tap water from state capitals and smart cities will be tested and they will be ranked.

♦The BIS is involved in international standardisation work of video standards through a technical committee which is responsible for video compression and it had earlier prepared standards for Set Top Boxes for cable TV, Direct-to-Home (DTH) terrestrial TV, IP-TV (Internet Protocol television) and ‘optical fibres network’, & now working on next generation LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes) and advanced TV standards.

♦BIS is also working towards ‘One Nation, One Standard’ to bring clarity among consumers, manufacturers and to facilitate trade.


  1. 10th National Cultural Festival to be held in Madhya Pradesh
  • 10th National Cultural Festival begins in Madhya Pradesh
  • 10th edition of the RashtriyaSanskritiMahotsav – National Cultural Festival is being organized by the Union Ministry of Culture from 14th to 21st of October under the ‘Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat’ campaign.
  • Governor LaljiTandon and Union Minister of State for Culture and Tourism Prahlad Singh Patel will be present at the inaugural ceremony of the Festival being held in Jabalpur
  • The National Cultural festival will display diverse forms of folk, art and culture of 22 states. The concept of National Cultural Festival was conceived in the year 2015. So far, the Ministry of Culture has organized nine such Festivals.
  • The festival is being organized in Madhya Pradesh for the second time. This time the festival will be held in Sagar and Rewa apart from Jabalpur.
  1. Director and producer Priyadarshan awarded MP government’s National Kishore Kumar Samman for 2018-19
  • Renowned Malayalam and Hindi film director and producer Priyadarshan was awarded Madhya Pradesh (MP) government’s National Kishore Kumar Samman for 2018-19 at a function in Khandwa, MP. The award is instituted by MP’s Department of Culture and is given for excellence in cinematic achievements.

Key Points:

♦The Kishore Kumar Samman jury selected noted actor Waheeda Rehman for the award for 2017-18 who will be felicitated in the coming days.

♦The award consisted of a cash prize of Rs 2 lakh and a citation.

♦Khandwa is the birthplace of the legendary singer- actor Kishore Kumar and he had expired on October 13, 1987 in Mumbai. So the award was presented on this day.


  1. India and Sierra Leone sign six agreements
  • India and Sierra Leone signed six agreements including extending a credit line of 30 million US Dollars for rice cultivation.
  • Vice President Venkaiah Naidu and Sierra Leone President Julius Maada Bio committed to further strengthening bilateral relations.
  • Naidu on the second leg of his ongoing five-day visit to the West African countries
  • New Delhi has extended concessional lines of credit to Sierra Leone worth USD 123 million in sectors such as agriculture, water, and transmission line.
  • In addition, Sierra Leone has also availed lines of credit worth USD 49.45 million from ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID) for projects in solar and telecom sector out of Lines of Credit extended by India to EBID
  1. BRICS culture ministers’ meeting 2019 held in Curitiba, Brazil
  • Prahlad Singh Patel , the Union Minister of State for Culture and Tourism (Independent charge) has participated in BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) Culture Ministers’ meeting 2019 held in Curitiba, Brazil.

Key points:

♦BRICS for India is a valuable platform for consultation, coordination and cooperation on contemporary global issues of mutual interest and the member countries have witnessed cultural cooperation reach new heights.

♦In view of the rich cultural heritage and traditions of all the members, India contribute towards strong relationships of friendship and cooperation in the fields of arts, museums and galleries, cultural heritage, archeology, literature, theater and films for children and youth etc.

♦Under the aegis of collaborations in these areas , India has made a commendable effort to organize several programs in which all member countries participated well.

Banking & Finance

  1. ICICI Bank launches new FD scheme called “FD health”
  • Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India (ICICI Bank) launched a new Fixed deposit (FD) scheme called “FD health” which provides investors a complimentary critical illness cover on 33 critical illnesses for the customers who are in the age bracket of 18-50 years.

Key Points:

♦For the first year, free of cost insurance cover will be provided which can be renewed later.

♦Critical illness cover of Rs 1 lakh from ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company will be provided on opening an FD of Rs. 2 lakh to Rs. 3 lakh for tenure of at least 2 years.

♦Earlier, ICICI Bank had launched FD Life (FD offering a free term life insurance) and FD Invest where interest from FDs is invested in monthly Systematic Investment Plans (SIPs) of a mutual fund.

Business & Economy

  1. Bangladesh emerges as second fastest growing economy: World Bank
  • ‘South Asia Economic Focus, Making (De) Centralization Work’ report shows that Bangladesh has emerged as the second-fastest growing economy in South Asia after Bhutan.
  • As per the World Bank’s estimate GDP growth rate of the country is projected to moderate to 7.2 per cent this fiscal year.
  • However, the report also indicates several challenges, including financial sector vulnerability, fiscal pressures and loss of external competitiveness.
  1. CIBIL to give real time alerts called CIBIL Alert on changes in customers’ credit profile
  • Trans Union Credit Information Bureau of India Limited (CIBIL), a credit information company, launched a new feature called CIBIL Alert through which customers can get real-time notifications about key changes in their CIBIL Score and Report.

Key Points:

♦It’s a part of CIBIL’s suite of subscription plans.

♦The CIBIL Alerts are for new enquiry added, new account added, change in utilisation, delinquency change, phone number added, new address added and change in CIBIL Score.

♦This new features comes after banks have begun to link their retail loans to credit scores under the new external benchmarking system.


  1. Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei sets new world record
  • A Kenyan women athlete Brigid Kosgei won the Chicago Marathon and registered a world record timing of 2 hours, 14 minutes, 4 seconds.
  • Brigid Kosgei (25 years old) broke the previous mark of 2:15:25 set by Paula Radcliffe in London in 2003.
  • It was not her first win, Kosgei won in Chicago last year with a timing of 2 hours, 18 minutes and 35 seconds.
  1. ICC test ranking 2019 : Kohli reaches close to top-ranked Steve Smith
  • As per the latest ICC (International Cricket Council ) men’s test rankings 2019, Indian captain Virat Kohli (936 points) has reached very close to the top Australian batsman Steve Smith (937 points) & took 2nd position in the batting list.
  • In bowlers ranking, Ravichandran Ashwin has also gained three places. He is now in seventh place, while Bumrah is still in third place.
  • Talking about all-rounders, Ravindra Jadeja is in second place and Ravichandran Ashwin is at number five.

Top 3 players in test batting ranking 2019:

Rank              Player Name         Country                 Points

1                      Steve Smith          Australia                937

2                      Virat Kohli            India                      936

3                      Kane Williamson New Zealand        878

Award & Honors

  1. Indian-American Abhijit Banerjee along with Esther Duflo& Michael Kremer jointly win Nobel in Economics
  • Indian-American Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer jointly won the 2019 Nobel Economics Prize for their experimental approach to alleviating global poverty.
  • Banerjee and French-American Duflo both work at the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology while Kremer is at Harvard University.
  • Duflo is the second woman and the youngest ever to win the economics prize.
  • The prize includes 9 million-kronor (USD 918,000) cash, a gold medal and a diploma. The winners will equally share the prize money.
  1. Shiv Nadar from HCL tops EdelGive Hurun India Philanthropy List 2019
  • According to the Edelgive Hurun India Philanthropy List 2019 which was released on October 14, 2019 by Hurun India, HCL (Hindustan Computer Limited) Technologies Chairman Shiv Nadar emerged as India’s most generous philanthropists who contributed Rs 826 crore during the financial year 2018-19 (FY19).

Key Points:

♦The cut-off rate to reach top 100 in the philanthropic list was increased by 130% and most spending by the philanthropists focused on education and health.

♦The total contribution of all the individuals in the top 100 list is around Rs 4,300 crore, a 90% increase from 2018.

Top 3 philanthropists:

Rank Name Firm Contribution
1 Shiv Nadar HCL Technologies Rs 826 crore
2 Azim Premji Wipro Rs 453 crore
3 Mukesh Ambani Reliance Industries Rs 402 crore

Science, Space & Technology

  1. DPIIT launches mobile app and website for IPR
  • Cell for IPR Promotion and Management (CIPAM)-DPIIT in collaboration with Qualcomm and National Law University (NLU) has developed this website and mobile app.
  • The mobile app has been customized for India to ensure that innovation which is fundamental to startups are protected, managed and commercialized.
  • Users will be able to access the L2Pro IP e-learning platform through their desktop, laptop, mobile browser and mobile application.
  1. IIT Madras signs 5-year joint-research agreement with ExxonMobil for research in Energy and Biofuels
  • Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT), Madras has signed a 5-year joint-research agreement with ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Company (EMRE), the research and engineering arm of ExxonMobil Corporation for research in biofuels, data analytics, gas conversion and transport, and finding low-emission solutions.
  • This agreement is in line with the central Government’s new ‘biofuel policy’, which targets to convert the country’s biofuel industry into a $15.6 billion economy
  • Globally, India is the 3rd highest producer of agro-residues after China and Brazil with the surplus potential of over 230 million tonnes per year.

Important Days

  1. World standards Day observed on 14 October 2019
  • World Standards Day (WSD) was celebrated on 14 October, 2019. It is observed annually by the members of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) as a way of tributing the global experts, developing technical agreements published in national and international standards. The 2019 theme for WSD is “Video Standards Create a Global Stage”.

Key points

♦The aim of WSD is to raise awareness on the importance of standardization to the global economy.

♦In 1946 in London, the day October 14 was chosen to celebrate the WSD. The first world standards day was celebrated in 1970 by Mr. FarukSünter, the then President of ISO.

January 26, 2020

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