September 12, 2019

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National

  1. IAF resurrects 17 Squadron ‘Golden Arrows’ for Rafale
  • The IAF’s Ambala-based 17 Squadron ‘Golden Arrows’ has been resurrected by the Indian Air Force. It will be the first squadron of Rafale fighter jets in the near future.
  • IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal B.S. Dhanoa was also present during the ceremony. He presented a memento to Station Commander Group Captain Harkirat Singh to commemorate the occasion.
  • This squadron was formed at Ambala on 01 Oct 1951 under the command of Flight Lieutenant D L Springett and was then equipped with Harvard-II B aircraft.
  1. PK Mishra takes over as Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister
  • Pramod Kumar Mishra has been appointed as the Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister and taken over charge today.
  • PK Mishra has a vast experience in policy-making and administration and has handled major assignments such as Additional Pr. Secretary to the Prime Minister; Secretary, Agriculture and Cooperation, Government of India; Chairman, State Electricity Regulatory Commission and in the area of Disaster management.
  • Earlier, he was conferred with the United Nations SASAKAWA Award 2019, the most prestigious international award in disaster management.
  1. PM Modi announces target revised from 21 million hectares to 26 million hectares by 2030
  • Prime Minister Narendera Modi has raised by 10% the amount of degraded land India has agreed to rehabilitate by 2030.
  • India would raise its ambition of the total area that would be restored from its land degradation status, from 21 million hectares to 26 million hectares between now and 2030.
  • He made the announcement at the 14th session of the Conference of Parties (COP) to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).
  • India has the presidency of the COP for two years. Shri Prakash Javadekar is the President of this COP.
  1. PM Narendra Modi inaugurated India’s second Multi-Modal Terminal in Jharkhand
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the India’s second multi-modal terminal built at Sahibganj in Jharkhand
  • This is the second of the three Multi Modal Terminals (MMTs) being constructed on river Ganga under Jal Marg Vikas Project (JMVP).
  • Earlier, in November 2018, Modi had inaugurated the first Multi Modal Terminals (MMTs) at Varanasi.
  • The Rs. 290 crore-multi-modal terminal at Sahibganj implemented by Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI)
  • The Terminal will open up industries of Jharkhand and Bihar to the global market and provide Indo-Nepal cargo connectivity through waterways route
  1. National Conference on Crop Residue Management
  • National Conference on Crop Residue Management was held for the farmers from the states of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh & Delhi.
  • The conference was organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare in collaboration with Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) in order to address concerns of farmers and State Governments.
  • The straw burning incidents in 2018 have reduced by 15% and 41% as compared to that in 2017 and 2016 respectively.
  • The conference has proposed to intensify In-Situ Management of Crop Residue to stop the straw burning.
  • The multilingual Mobile App “Custom Hiring Centre (CHC) Farm Machinery” has also been launched for the farmers.
  • Custom Hiring Centre (CHC) Farm Machinery Mobile App: It will connect the farmers with Custom Hiring Service Centres in their area.

State

  1. Gurugram Police ties up with Google for traffic updates
  • The Gurugram traffic police have tied up with Google maps for dissemination of traffic related information in real time for public use
  • Information such as planned road closures, diversions and traffic alerts will now be shared by the Gurugram traffic police through Google Maps
  • The basic idea behind this arrangement is to prompt commuters to make intelligent choices in order to make their commuting experience hassle-free
  1. GeM and Punjab Government sign MoU for Setting up Project Management Unit
  • Government e Marketplace (GeM) and Government of Punjab, signed MoU to set up a GeM Organizational Transformation Team (GOTT) Project Management Unit (PMU) in the state.
  • GOTT will assist the Buyer Departments and agencies to transform their business activities, competencies & models to fully leverage the opportunities of an open market based procurement.
  • Government e Marketing (GeM), is a public procurement portal launched by Government of India in August 2016, comesunder the Department of Commerce, Ministry of Commerce & Industry
  1. PM Shri Narendra Modi launched NADCP in Mathura, Uttar Pradesh
  • Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi launched National Animal Disease Control Programme (NADCP) in Mathura, Uttar Pradesh in the presence of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Mathura Member of Parliament (MP) Hema Malini. NADCP aims to control the Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) and Brucellosis in the livestock by 2025 and eradicate them by 2030.

Key Points:

♦The cost of the project, funded entirely by the government, is Rs 12,652 crores for a period of five years till 2024.

♦Vaccination will be provided against the FMD to more than 500 million livestock including cattle, buffalo, sheep, goats and pigs and 36 million female bovine calves annually to fight against the brucellosis disease.

Launch of other programmes

♦PM launched National Artificial Insemination Programme, Babugarh Sex Semen facility and Swachhta Hi Seva Programme 2019 in Mathura.

♦He requested the public to eliminate single use plastic from October 2, 2019.

♦He also visited the Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay Pashu Arogya Mela.

  1. MP govt. to offer cows for online adoption
  • The Madhya Pradesh (MP) govt. announced to launch online service for cow adoption and shed provisions under the MP govt’s initiative “Project Gaushala”at Gaushalas(cow shelters). In this project a cow can be adopted for a minimum period of 15days.
  • Currently there are 626 gaushalas in the state. 15day cow feed would cost Rs. 1100, 10years would cost Rs. 3Lakhs and for 6months it costs Rs. 11,100.
  1. Happiness department of Madhya Pradesh opens “Time Bank”
  • The Madhya Pradesh’s Happiness department has planned to set up “Time Bank” that is mutual exchange of services. In Time bank, The units of time in an hour is valued as currency. It would  provide money for an hour that could be exchanged to acquire a new skill without the need of any paper money. Whenever a bank member needs to get a skill or service ,for example gardening , playing guitar, by knowing the particular skill ,the member could exchange an hour of credited money to another bank member.The member can start with zero credit.

Key points:

♦Time bank was first set up in Japan in 1973. Later, it was famous in the idea of Time Dollar by USA CEO of Timebanks.

♦There are over 500 such communities across 32 countries.

International

  1. India and ASEAN to review free trade pact
  • India and ASEAN had a decade-old free trade pact. Now, ASEAN and India have agreed to review this pact as India’s deepening trade deficit prompts local industries to demand changes to trading arrangements.
  • The joint statement said that this review is aimed to make this agreement more user-friendly.
  • Industries like – Textile manufacturers and small farmers, have demanded the government take a fresh look at trade with ASEAN.
  1. Thailand became the first Asian nation to unveil plain cigarette packaging
  • Thailand became the first Asian nation to unveil plain cigarette packaging to reduce the appeal of smoking and complied with the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) guidelines.

Key Points:

♦The stocks must be cleared by December 8, 2019 or else the entities will have to pay a fine of 40,000 baht ($1,300).

♦Australia became the first country to require tobacco products to be sold without colourful brand logos in 2012 and other European countries including France, Hungary and the United Kingdom have also followed the same path.

  1. Eritrea tops the list of 10 countries in press censorship by CPJ
  • New York-based media watchdog “Committee to Protect Journalists” (CPJ) released “10 Most Censored Countries list” that have high press censorship. The list was topped by East African country Eritrea that shut all independent media in 2001and has only 1% of the country’s population in internet penetration. The country was also labeled as “the worst jailer of journalists in sub-Saharan Africa,” in the report as it has jailed nearly 16 journalists in the country since December 2018. Eritrea is followed by North Korea and Turkmenistan in the second and third place respectively.

Key points

♦Most of these countries were framed to have been jailing and harassing journalists and their families and also engaging in digital monitoring and censorship of internet access. Under Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, everyone has the right to seek and receive news and express opinions.

♦Press freedom is restricted to countries like Yemen, Syria, and Somalia but it is due to the fact of violent conflict, insufficient infrastructure that are dangerous for the press.

Banking & Finance

  1. IDBI & LIC CSL to launch a co-branded credit card
  • The Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI Bank) and Life Insurance Corporation of India Credit Cards Services (LIC CSL), a wholly-owned subsidiary of LIC, will launch a co-branded credit card.
  • It will be marketed to customers, agents, and employees of the corporation and its subsidiaries.
  • At present, IDBI Bank offers 5 credit card variants as LIC has ties up with Axis Bank and Corporation Bank for issuance of credit cards under co-branded/white label agreements.

Sports

  1. Sports Ministry suspends Paralympics Committee of India
  • In a recent move by the Sports Ministry Paralympics Committee of India (PCI) was de-recognized, citing a violation of the National Sports Code in the body’s decision to sack President Rao Inderjit Singh.
  • The Ministry has issued a suspension letter to the PCI. Ministry mentioned that PCI has been penalised for misgovernance.
  • Inderjit Singh was removed by a majority vote when the ministry had received a complaint against him. The federation’s response to it was found unsatisfactory.
  1. Hero Moto Corp Chairman, MD and CEO Pawan Munjal to be inducted in 2019 Asia Pacific Golf Hall of Fame
  • Pawan Munjal, the Chairman, Managing Director(MD) and Chief Executive Officer(CEO) of Hero MotoCorp was selected to be inducted in the 2019 Asia Pacific Golf Hall of Fame for his support in sports in India as well as globally. The award ceremony will be held on November 6, 2019 at DLF(Delhi Land & Finance) Golf & Country Club in Gurugram, Haryana with his induction permanently installed at Dr David Chu Golf Museum at Shenzhen in China. This museum will be the new home of hall of fame.

Key points

♦Other inductees: Munjal joins other inductees such as legendary golfer Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player,David Chu(Mission Hills golf resort founder).

♦Co-Hostings: Munjal co-hosts one of the most high profile golf tournaments in the world,

♦The upcoming ‘Hero World Challenge’ in November-December 2019 and also sponsors many international golf tournaments.

Appointment & Resignation

  1. Bollywood Actor Ranveer Singh signed as JBL’s new global brand ambassador
  • Bollywood Actor Ranveer Singh is the new global brand ambassador of Audio equipment Maker JBL owned by Harman International Industries.
  • To strengthen JBL’s dominance in the country, He will engage in all sequence of marketing initiatives and also endorse a range of new JBL’s consumer audio product.

Award & Honors

  1. “Srivilliputtur Palkova” gets Geographical Indication(GI) tag in Chennai
  • “Srivilliputtur Palkova” in Virudhunagar district of Tamil Nadu has get Geographical Indication(GI) tag in chennai.The sweet is prepared from high quality flavour of milk with sugar.
  • The milk is fetched only from in and around reared cows of Srivilliputtur. In 2014,The petition was filed by Srivilliputtur Milk Producers’ Co-operative Society for Geographical Indication(GI) tag.It was approved by Geographical Indication (GI) registry of Chennai.

Science, Space & Technology

  1. North Korea tested super-large multiple rocket launcher
  • North Korea has recently claimed that it has tested a super-large multiple rocket launcher under the guidance of its leader Kim Jong-Un.
  • It was the 10th weapon test that North Korea has conducted this year. Earlier, North Korea had fired multiple short-range missiles in May this year.
  • On the other hand, South Korea military has claimed that North Korea launched two unidentified projectiles from its western region toward the East Sea.

Environment

  1. Cryodrakon boreas- new species of Pterosaur reptile  identified by scientists
  • The University of Southern California (USC) scientists and colleagues have discovered new reptile species Cryodrakon boreas from the Azhdarchid group of pterosaurs, which is also called as “frozen dragon of the north”.
  • These species with a wingspan of up to 10mts and weight of about 250kg were once, one among the largest flying animals that lived 77 million years ago during the Cretaceous period.
  • The remains of the species was first discovered in Alberta, Canada, 30 years ago.
  • Its study is published in the journal of “Vertebrate Paleontology” led by author David Hone from Queen Mary University of London in the United Kingdom (UK).

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September 17, 2019

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