September 25, 2019

National

  1. Two agriculture-related mobile apps launched
  • Narendra Singh Tomar, Agriculture and Farmer Welfare Minister, has recently launched two agriculture-related Mobile Applications.
  • These mobile apps are – Krishi Kisan and CHC Farm Machinery. Farmers can avail custom hiring services located in the radius of 50 kilometres.
  • Krishi Kisan App makes farmers enable to generate accurate information of the best demonstration of high-yielding crops and seeds at nearby area.
  1. Govt launches ‘UMMID’ initiative to tackle inherited genetic diseases of newborn babies
  • Science and Technology and Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan launched ‘UMMID’ initiative to tackle inherited genetic diseases of newborn babies.
  • Congenital and hereditary genetic diseases are becoming a significant health burden and there is a need for adequate and effective genetic testing and counselling services.
  • The Minister also inaugurated NIDAN (National Inherited Diseases Administration) Kendras.
  • The new initiative aims at creating awareness about genetic disorders amongst clinicians and establish molecular diagnostics in hospitals so that the benefits of developments in medical genetics could reach patients.
  1. Union minister Nitin Gadkari and Shri RK Singh inaugurated National Conclave on Energy Efficiency in MSME sector in New Delhi
  • The Union Minister for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) and Road Transport & Highways Shri Nitin Gadkari and Shri RK Singh, Union Minister of State for Power and New & Renewable Energy (IC) and Skill Development & Entrepreneurship jointly inaugurated the 2-day organised National Conclave on Energy Efficiency in MSME sector in New Delhi. T
  • The ministers launched Knowledge Management Portal “SIDHIEE” under BEE’s MSME Programme along with Energy Conservation Guidelines for MSMEs. The portal contains information for MSMEs inclusive of 50 video tutorials for energy efficient technologies
  • A Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) was signed between Shri SurendraNathTripathi, Development Commissioner of MSME and Shri AbhayBakre, Director General,Bureau of Energy Efficiency on enhancement of energy security in MSMEs.
  1. Govt hikes family pension for Central govt. employee dying within 7 years of service from 30 to 50 %
  • The government has hiked the family pension for the govt. employee who dies within 7 years of service. He/she will now avail the pension at 50% of the last pay drawn from previous 30% for a period of 10 years. This hike will come into effect from October 1, 2019 after the govt. amended Rule 54 of the Central Civil Services (Pension) Rules, 1972 recently.

Key points

♦Families of govt. servants who died before 7-year completion before October 1, 2019 will also be eligible for the hike at enhanced rate.

♦The benefit is available to all govt. servants including personnel of Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF).

  1. UIDAI announces applying for Aadhaar on arrival by NRIs without 182-day wait
  • The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) announced that Non-resident Indians (NRIs) with valid Indian passport could apply for the Aadhaar on arrival, without the need to wait for 182-day period by scheduling a prior appointment.
  • A valid Indian passport will be accepted as proof of identity, proof of address (PoA) and date of birth document.

International

  1. UN Climate Action Summit launches an initiative to guide heavy industries towards low-carbon economy
  • UN Climate Action Summit launched a new initiative to guide the world’s heaviest greenhouse gas emitting industries toward the low-carbon economy.
  • A new group for industry Transition announced including India, Sweden, Netherlands, South Korea, UK and a group of companies.
  • This global initiative will ensure heavy industries and mobility companies can find a workable pathway to deliver on the Paris Agreement.
  1. A peacetime operation in UK after Thomas Cook collapse
  • British tourists stranded across the world have started coming back through UK’s peacetime operation. In the first batch, about 1, 50,000 British tourists, came back to the country.
  • These tourists have flown back home from various destinations like the US, Turkey, Bulgaria and Turkey.
  • The UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is coordinating the repatriation, the biggest in peacetime, after the tour operator Thomas Cook ceased trading with immediate effect.
  1. India-US Tri-Services ”Exercise Tiger Triumph” To Be Held In November
  • India and the United States are set to hold their first tri-services exercise code-named “Tiger Triumph” at Visakhapatnam and Kakinada in November this year.
  • India-US tri-services ”Exercise Tiger Triumph” is being organised under the aegis of the headquarters of the Integrated Defence Staff.
  • Final Planning Conference (FPC) for India-US Tri-Services Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Relief (HADR) concluded at Headquarters Eastern Naval Command.
  • This is the second such tri-service exercise to be conducted by India with any other country after Russia.

Banking & Finance

  1. RBI bans PMC Bank, account holders will not be able to withdraw more than 1000 in a day
  • The country’s central bank, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has prohibited Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative Bank Limited (PMC) on business transactions of any kind for the next 6 months following detection of alleged irregularities. The RBI has taken this action under section 35A of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949.

Key points:

♦Under this decree, no depositor can withdraw more than 1,000 thousand money from his savings account, current account or any other deposit account. Apart from this, the issuance of new loans of the bank has also been banned.

♦As on March 2019, PMC Bank had business of Rs 20,000 crore consisting of Rs 11,617 crore deposits and Rs 8,383 crore advances.The bank will do business with restrictions till further notice or directions by RBI.

♦The bank has 137 branches in 6 states including those in New Delhi. It had 3.76% gross non-performing assets (NPAs) and net 2.19 % NPAs as at the end of March 2019.

  1. SBI Life Insurance & Repco Home Finance signs corporate agency agreement
  • Repco Home Finance Ltd (RHFL ),an Indian banking and financial services company has signed corporate agency agreement with SBI (State Bank of India) Life Insurance, a leading life insurance company in India to provide SBI Life’s range of products to its customers.

Key points:

♦SBI Life Insurance will now be available in RHFL’s over 148 branches and 27 satellite centres of RHFL spread across the country.

♦Through this partnership, SBI Life Insurance will reach its product offers and enable more new customers across geographies to meet their diverse insurance needs.

♦The corporate agency agreement was signed by RHFL CFO T Karunakaran, General Manager K Prabhu and SBI Life, Regional Director, E Thirumudi Pandian in the presence of Repco Home Finance Ltd MD and CEO, Yashpal Gupta and others.

Business & Economy

  1. National centre for I-T e-assessment to be based in Delhi
  • A national e-assessment centre (NeAC) will be set up in the national capital as part of the government’s ambitious plan to launch faceless and nameless assessment for income tax payers from next month.
  • The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), that frames policy for the Income-tax department, has issued an order for the creation of the Centre.
  • The Centre will have 16 officials and will be headed by a Principal Chief Commissioner of Income-tax (PCCIT)K M Prasad as its chief.

Sports

  1. Divij Sharan Wins Doubles, Daniil Medvedev Picks Singles Title at St Petersburg
  • India’s Divij Sharan claimed his fifth ATP career title after winning the St Petersburg Open doubles crown, partnering Igor Zelenay of Slovakia.
  • This is Divij’s second title of the season after winning the Maharashtra Open in Pune.
  • US Open finalist Daniil Medvedev crushed BornaCoric on his way to winning the ATP event in Saint Petersburg.
  • World number four Medvedev, who since July has reached five finals in as many tournaments, won his third title of the year and sixth of his career.
  1. Malvika claims maiden title at Maldives International
  • Young Indian shuttler Malvika Bansod has claimed her maiden title at the Maldives International Future Series with a stunning straight-game win over top seed Thet Htar Thuzar of Myanmar in women’s singles.
  • Among other Indians, top seeded Kevin Arokia Walter settled for a runners-up finish after going down 13-21 14-21 to second seeded Thai Kantawat Leelavechabutr in men’s singles competition.
  • Indian pair of Vaibhaav and Prakash Raj, seeded second, also claimed the men’s doubles title after beating Thailand’s Pakkapon Teeraratsakul and Panitchaphon Teeraratsakul.
  1. Indian chess player Koneru Hampi wins the Skolkova Fides Grand Prix title 2019 in Skolkovo, Russia
  • Indian chess grandmaster, Koneru Hampi (32) of Gudivada ( Andhra Pradesh) has cliched Fide World Grand Prix 2019 title with 8 points from 11 rounds in Skolkovo, Russia. While other Indian ,D Harika secured the sixth place with 5 points.

Key points:

♦In the final round Hampi just need to play a draw for the title. The advantage she has in the final round is that have to play white pieces against the defending world champion Wenjun Xu of China.

♦The Fide Grand Prix 2019 is a series of four chess tournaments. The top 2 candidates from this series will qualify for the match which will decide who will be the World Champion Challenger in 2021.It was organized by World Chess, formerly known as Agon.

♦The other 3 Grand Prix will be held in Monaco from December 2 – 15,2019 while the second Grand Prix will be held in Lausanne from March 1 -14,2020 while the third Grand Prix in Sardinia will be between May 2 -15, 2020.

The list of top six winners at Fide World Grand Prix 2019:

Rank Winner
1 Koneru Humpy (India)
2 Ju Wenjun (China)
3 Aleksandra Goryachkina (Russia)
4 Kateryna Lagno (Russia)
5 Valentina Gunina (Russia)
6 D. Harika (India)

Appointment & Resignation

  1. Nilesh Shah got appointed as Chairman of AMFI
  • The Managing Director (MD) of Kotak Mahindra Asset Management Co Ltd., Nilesh Shah has been appointed as Chairman of the Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI) at its board meeting held in Mumbai, Maharashtra.

Key points:

♦He will replace Nimesh Shah, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, ICICI (Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India )Prudential AMC, who was appointed to the position in the year 2018.

♦The AMFI board has also elected  Saurabh Nanavati, Chief Executive Officer, Invesco Mutual Fund as its new vice-chairman.

♦Nilesh has over 25 years of experience in capital markets and market related investments.

♦At present, there are 15 members in AMFI board of these 7 are from the top ten fund houses and 4 each from mid and small sized AMCs(asset management company).

  1. Godavarthi Venkata Srinivas will be the next Ambassador of India to the Republic of Guinea Bissau
  • According to the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India (GoI), Shri Godavarthi Venkata Srinivas, a 1993 batch IFS ( Indian Foreign Service) officer has been appointed as the next Ambassador of India to the Republic of Guinea Bissau, with residence in Dakar.He will succeeds Partha Satpathy.

Key points:

♦Srinivas currently served as India’s Ambassador to the Republic of Senegal.

♦India and Guinea Bissau have maintained better friendly relations for decades & in May 2010, an Honorary Consulate of India in Bissau was inaugurated.

  1. Coach Kim Ji Hyun of South Korea, who guided world championship gold medalist PV Sindhu, resigns
  • India’s women’s singles badminton coach, Kim Ji Hyun (45) of South Korea, who guided World Championship gold medalist PV Sindhu, has resigned from the post for personal reasons.She had to move to New Zealand with her husband Richie Mer, who had suffered a ‘neuro stroke’ a few days earlier.

Key points:

♦Kim was signed by the Badminton Association of India (BAI) earlier in 2019. It was under his guidance that Sindhu won the gold medal at the World Championship 2019 in Basel, Switzerland.

♦Kim was India’s third foreign coach who resigned before completing her term.

Award & Honors

  1. Infosys tops Indian companies in Forbes’ World’s best ‘regarded’ companies list 2019, Visa tops
  • Nearly 17 Indian companies were listed in the Forbes World’s best ‘regarded’ companies list 2019. The company which topped among other Indian firms is Infosys which ranked third in the overall list. The first and second place were held by global payments technology company Visa and Italian car-maker Ferrari respectively.

Key points

♦Infosys which tops among the Indian companies, was ranked at 31st position in 2018.

♦Indian firms in the top 50 list: Tata Consultancy Services(TCS) ranking 22nd and Tata Motors ranking (31) featured among the top 50 in the coveted list.

♦Other Indian companies: Other Indian companies which were ranked in the list were  Tata Steel at 105th rank, Larsen & Toubro- 115th rank, Mahindra & Mahindra- 117th rank , HDFC-135th, Bajaj Finserv- 143th, Piramal Enterprises-149th, Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL)- 153th,Hindustan Computers Limited( HCL) Technologies-155th, Hindalco Industries-157th, Wipro-168th, HDFC Bank- 204th, Sun Pharma Industries- 217th, General Insurance Corporation Of India(GIC)-224th, Imperial Tobacco Company of India Limited (ITC)-231st and Asian Paints at 248th rank.

♦The data was gathered by Statista that surveyed 15,000 respondents from more than 50 countries.

Books

  1. ‘Girl Power: Indian Women Who Broke The Rules’ by Neha J Hiranandani on 50 indian women role models released
  • A new book named ‘Girl Power: Indian Women Who Broke The Rules‘ written by author Neha J Hiranandani was released on September 23, 2019. The book is about the stories/achievements of 50 Indian women role models. The book is published by Scholastic India.
  • Some of the women featured in the list were badminton player PV Sindhu, actress Priyanka Chopraa and real life heroines such as Subhasini Mistry, who won Padma Bhushan for healthcare,ChandroTomar, the octogenarian sharpshooter, popularly known as ‘Revolver Dadi’, queen Abbakka of Chowta dynasty etc.

Obituary

  1. Veteran Indian cricketer Madhav Apte passes away
  • Madhav Apte was Indian Cricket Team’s former opener. He breathed his last in Mumbai after suffering a cardiac arrest.
  • Madhav Apte played for one year only, he made his test cricket debut against Pakistan in November 1952 while playing the last test match against West Indies in April 1953.
  • He played first-class cricket matches with several legendry cricketers of the country like Polly Umargir, Vinoo Mankad, Rusi Modi and Vijay Hazare.

Important Days

  1. President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurates 6th India Water Week – 2019
  • The President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurated the 6th India Water Week-2019, at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi.
  • The theme of the India Water Week-2019 is ‘Water Cooperation – Coping with 21st Century Challenges’
  • This event was organised by the Department of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, the Ministry of Jal Shakti
  • Japan and European Union have been associated as partner countries for this mega event.
January 25, 2020

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