September 29, 2019

National

  1. Rajnath Singh launches Navy’s first new stealth frigate, INS ‘Nilgiri’ in Mumbai
  • Union Defense Minister Rajnath Singh launched the warship Nilgiri in Mumbai
  • INS Nilgiri is the first ship of the Project -17A frigates,
  • INS Nilgiri is the first of the Indian Navy’s seven new stealth frigates with enhanced stealth features, weapons and sensors.
  • Project 17A frigates is a design derivative of the Shivalik class stealth frigates with much more advanced stealth features and indigenous weapons and sensors.
  • The stealth frigate, Nilgiri, is made with the co-ordination of Mazagon Dockyard Limited and Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers with the Indian Navy, DRDO, and other public and private partners
  • Rajnath Singh also commissioned the largest dry dock of Indian Navy – The Aircraft Carrier Dock at the Naval Dockyard in Mumbai
  1. Pilot Project for ‘Industry 4.0’ launched at the Modern Coach Factory, Raebareli
  • The Ministry of Railways and Department of Science & Technology in partnership with Indian Institute of Technology(IIT) Kanpur launched a pilot project for implementation of ,‘Industry 4.0’ which is a subset of the 4th industrial revolution, at Modern Coach Factory (MCF) at Raebareli, Uttar Pradesh (UP). This launched project, would be undertaken under the aegis of “Technology Mission for Indian Railways” (TMIR).
  • Industry 4.0: It is the name given to current trends in automation and data exchange in manufacturing technologies for productivity increment. Industry 4.0 makes use of Internet of Things(IoT), Artificial Intelligence(AI), Big Data & Analytics, Machine Learning and Cloud Computing. As Industry 4.0 is a complex system, the architecture will have to be gradually expanded in phased manner only inorder to achieve Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE).
  1. Tribal Affairs Ministry inaugurates National Tribal Festival “Aadi Mahotsav 2019” in Noida, Uttar Pradesh
  • The Minister of State for Tribal Affairs, Shri Renuka Singh has inaugurated the National Tribal Festival, ‘Adi Mahotsav 2019‘, which focuses on rich tribal culture, crafts, food and commerce, at India Expo Centre, Noida, Uttar Pradesh (UP).

Key points:

♦Organized by the tribal ministry, the Festival has70 stalls of the exhibition cum-sale center, where tribal handicrafts, art, paintings, textiles, jewelry has been displayed. About 200 tribal artisans from all over the country participated in this festival.

♦Tribal garments manufactured in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) in the North to Tamil Nadu in the South and Gujarat in the West to Nagaland /Sikkim in the East available at the festival.

♦For the first time tribal artisans received credit / debit card payments through Point of Sale (PoS) machine. For this, State Bank of India(SBI) has provided special training.

♦TRIBES India has tied up with Amazon, Snapdeal, Flipkart, Paytm and Government of India portal Gem(Government e-Market place). Apart from this, TRIBES India has its own e-commerce portal – http://www.tribesindia.com.

♦During the inauguration, Shri Deepal Khandekar, Secretary, Tribal Affairs and Shri R.C. Meena, Chairman, TRIFED (Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India)were also present.

State

  1. Delhi HC chief D.N Patel launched ‘Delhi High Court’ app for lawyers and litigants
  • The Delhi High Court(HC) has launched official mobile app named “Delhi High Court” for lawyers and litigants (person involved in a lawsuit). The app was launched by its Chief Justice(CJ) DhirubhaiNaranbhai Patel.

Key points

♦App use: The app provides details about case status, display board, cause list and access to other important links of the website of HC. Under the ‘Advocate Login’ section in the app, a lawyer can keep and manage personal case diary online. The ‘important links’ section allows information access of CJ, sitting judges, their roster, judgments, case history etc.

♦Features: The app can also be accessed by a guest user, thus allowing the litigants to apply for entry pass issuance to visit the HC. Advocates registered with the high court’s e-filing software will also be able to apply for the e-inspection and online gate pass. The HC’s cause list and calendar will also be available in the app.

♦Availability: The app is currently available for Android devices in Google Play Store and soon would be made available for Iphone devices in its App store.

  1. Indian writer, V J James’s novel ‘Nireeswaran’ wins Vayalar Ramavarma Memorial Literature Award 2019
  • An Indian writer who primarily writes in Malayalam language, V. J. James’s novel ‘Nireeswaran’ (Atheist,a person who disbelieves or lacks belief in the existence of God) has been selected for the Vayalar Ramavarma Memorial Literature Award 2019.
  • The author would be presented with this award at a function held in Thiruvananthapuram on October 27,2019, the death anniversary of the late Ramavarma.

Key points:

♦The award carries a cash prize of Rs 1-lakh, a sculpture designed by Kanayi Kunhiraman and felicitation letter.

♦Hailing from Vazhappally in Changanassery (Kerala), V. J. James is an engineer in Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. His novel ‘Nireeswaran’ poses the principles of God and faith. It has been published by D.C. Books.

♦James’s major works include ‘Purappadinte Pusthakam’, ‘Dathapaharam’ and ‘Chorashatram’ .

About Vayalar Award:

♦It is given for the best literary work in Malayalam. The award was instituted in 1977 by the Vayalar Ramavarma Memorial Trust in memory of the poet and lyricist Vayalar Ramavarma (1928-1975).

International

  1. Overview of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the United States
  • The Prime Minister (PM) of India Mr Narendra Modi visited United States (US) from September 21-27, 2019.
  • PM Modi attended the “Howdy, Modi” event at NRG stadium in Houston, Texas along with the US President Donald J Trump. He addressed the Indian community over fifty thousand and extended an invitation to President Trump and his family to visit India.
  • PM addressed the 74th Edition of United Nations (UN) Climate Action Summit 2019 in New York, United States which was held under the theme “Climate Action Summit 2019: A Race We Can Win. A Race We Must Win”.
  • The India-Pacific Islands Developing States (PSIDS) Leaders’ Meeting was held on September 24, 2019 in New York on the sidelines of the 74th UNGA. Prime Minister Narendra Modi met the leaders of the Pacific Island countries.
  • PM Modi received the Global Goalkeeper Award 2019 at Lincoln Centre by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (SBA).

Banking & Finance

  1. BIS launches green bond fund for central banks
  • The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) has launched an open-ended fund for central bank investments in green bonds.
  • Responding to a growing demand for climate-friendly investments among official institutions, the BIS’s green bond fund initiative helps central banks to incorporate environmental sustainability objectives in the management of their reserves.
  • With the support of an advisory committee drawn from a global group of central banks, the fund pools BIS client assets to promote green finance through sizeable climate-friendly investments and support the adoption of best market practices to deepen the green bond market.
  • The open-ended fund, denominated in US dollars, is structured according to Swiss law and belongs to the BIS Investment Pool (BISIP) family, a format commonly used by BIS Asset Management for its fixed income investment products.
  • It is managed in-house by BIS Asset Management. Eligible bonds have a minimum rating of A- and comply with the International Capital Market Association’s Green Bond Principles and/or the Climate Bond Standard published by the Climate Bonds Initiative.
  • The BIS offers financial services to a broad client base comprising some 140 central banks, monetary authorities and international organisations worldwide, and has a long-standing experience in managing fixed income portfolios.
  1. RBI imposes ban on Laxmi Vilas Bank under PCA Framework
  • The country’s central bank, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has put the Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) Framework against Laxmi Vilas Bank (LVB) after an inquiry against the directors of the bank over the alleged fraud.
  • RBI puts the bank in PCA due to reasons like high net NPA (Non Performing Assets), insufficient capital to risk-weighted assets ratio (CRR) and Common Equity Tier 1 (CET1) negative RoA (Return on assets) for two consecutive years and high leverage, based on the on-site inspection under the Risk Based Supervision carried out for the year ended 31 March, 2019. The bank’s net NPA registered at 7.49%, capital adequacy ratio was at 7.72% and its RoA was -2.32% for 2018 (FY-Fiscal year 19).

Sports

  1. England women’s wicketkeeper Sarah Taylor announces retirement from international cricket
  • England women’s wicket-keeper Sarah Taylor aged 30 retired from international cricket career. The announcement was made by England Cricket Board(ECB).

Key points

♦Taylor made her debut in T20I(twenty twenty International) in 2006 where England was defeated by India in the finals. She made 226 international appearances scoring 6533 runs which is a second on England Women’s all-time list of run-scorers.

♦Achievement: On 1 September 2008 she became the youngest woman cricketer to score 1000 runs in One Day Internationals(ODI) when she scored 75 not out at Taunton(England) in England’s 10 wicket win against India.

Appointment & Resignation

  1. Suresh Chitturi appointed International Egg Commission chief
  • Suresh Chitturi, Vice Chairman and Managing Director of India’s leading poultry firm Srinivasa Farms, has been appointed as chairman of theInternational Egg Commission(IEC) for the next two years.
  • The appointment was made at the IEC Global Leadership Conference in Copenhagen in Denmark.
  • Suresh Chitturi will be the first chair from Asia in the history of the institution, as he assumes the role as the Chairman of IEC.
  1. DHFL Board approves Vaijinath M. Gavarshetty as its CEO & and key managerial personnel from October 1, 2019
  • The board of directors of Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd (DHFL- a deposit-taking housing finance company) has approved the appointment of Vaijinath M. Gavarshetty as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and key managerial personnel of the company with effect from October 1, 2019. He will succeed Harshil Mehta. Harshil Mehta resigned in Feb 2019 after that Kapil Wadhwan, chairman and managing director of DHFL, held the additional responsibility of CEO.

Key points:

♦Vaijinath has over 33 years of professional experience in Banking with State Bank of India (SBI) in various capacities & positions, including as Chief General Manager (CGM) and head of SBI’s Real Estate & Housing Business Vertical and also as a nominee Director on the Board of a Corporate.

♦After retirement, he has been working as an advisor with India Mortgage Guarantee Corporation, Syndicate Bank as also Kuliza Technologies Pvt. Ltd and with Pranjal International Resolutions Pvt. Ltd., Mumbai, he served as a member of the Advisory Board.

♦From the second half of 2018 (FY-Fiscal year 2019), DHFL has been under substantial  financial stress when the then CEO Harshil Mehta stepped down from the post.

Award & Honors

  1. CSIR announces the winners of Shanti SwarupBhatnagar prize for 2019
  • Twelve scientists from different institutions across the country have been chosen for the prestigious Shanti SwarupBhatnagar prize for 2019.
  • The award winners include KayaratSaikrishnan of Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Pune and SoumenBasak of National Institute of Immunology, New Delhi for biological sciences, Raghavan B Sunoj of IIT, Bombay and Tapas Kumar Maji of Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Bengaluru for chemical sciences, and DishantPancholi of the Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Chennai, and Nina Gupta of Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata for mathematical sciences.
  • The other winners are Dheeraj Kumar of International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, New Delhi and Mohammad Javed Ali of LV Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad for medical sciences, AnindaSinha of IISc, Bengaluru, and Shankar Ghosh of TIFR, Mumbai for physical sciences, SubimalGhosh of IIT, Bombay for earth, atmosphere, ocean and planetary sciences, and ManikVarma of Microsoft Research India, Bengaluru for engineering sciences.
  • The prize carries a cash component of Rs 5 lakh each. It is awarded annually for outstanding research, both fundamental and applied. It is named after the founder director general of CSIR, Shanti SwarupBhatnagar.
  1. Cochin International Airport wins international award for passenger satisfaction
  • Airport Council International (ACI) has recognised Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL) as the best airport in terms of services it offered to passengers
  • CIAL was ranked amongst the best airports in the 5-15 million category in the Asia Pacific region for the year 2018 based on annual Airport Service Quality (ASQ) survey conducted by the ACI.
  • AAI airport Indore figures in the best airport in 2-5 mn category
  • ACI ASQ survey is world-renowned and established airport service quality benchmarking programme measuring passengers’ satisfaction and is designed for airports to understand the importance of monitoring and improving passenger service.

Books

  1. Award-winning author Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi comes out with a new book titled “Loss”
  • Mumbai based Indian author Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi (42) is coming back with a new book entitled “Loss” which is a record on death and grief, drawing on a stock of personal losses of his parents and a beloved pet (Bruschetta). The book has been published by HarperCollins India.

Key points:

♦Loss ,a collection of three essays, has takes the reader down the dark, winding path to healing.It is scheduled to come out in the summer of 2020.

♦Some of the other books by Siddharth are, “The Last Song of Dusk” (won the Betty Trask Award, one of the UK’s (United Kingdom) most prestigious prizes for debut novels), “The Lost Flamingoes of Bombay” (shortlisted for the Man Asian Prize ) and “The Rabbit & the Squirrel”.

Science, Space & Technology

  1. Japan Launches ‘biggest Cargo Spaceship’ To Replenish Supplies At ISS
  • Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), launched its cargo vessel Kounotori8 to the ISS from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s Tanegashima Space Center.
  • The Kounotori8 is claimed to be the ‘the world’s biggest transport space ship’ by Japan’s space agency JAXA. The cargo vessel was launched using an H-IIB rocket at 1:05 AM (local time) from the Tanegashimaisland in Japan.
  • The unpiloted cargo ship carried more than 4 tons of supplies, batteries, and a prototype laser-communications system.
  1. Rajnath Singh commissions 2nd INS Khanderi attack submarine, 1st P-17 Shivalik-class frigate INS Nilgiri & the largest aircraft carrier drydock
  • The Defence Minister of India, Mr Rajnath Singh commissioned India’s second Scorpene-class attack submarine INS Khanderi, India’s first P-17 Shivalik-class frigate INS Nilgiri and the largest aircraft carrier drydock into the Indian Navy in a ceremony held at the Mazagon Docks in Mumbai, Maharashtra in the presence of Navy chief Admiral Karambir Singh and others.
  • The motto of INS (Indian Navy Ship) Khanderi is ‘Akhand Abhedya Adrishya’ that implies unity of the crew and its stealth capabilities. Its name and features are inspired by the fish named ‘Kanneri’, found in Arabian Sea.
  • Launched in August 2017, it is the second class attack submarine under Project 75, the first being INS Kalvari.

Important Days

  1. World Rabies Day 2019 observed on September 28
  • World Rabies Day (WRD) was observed on September 28, 2019 under the theme “Rabies: Vaccinate to Eliminate”. This 13th annual observance raises awareness about rabies disease and its preventable measures. Rabies is a viral disease that causes inflammation of the brain (acute encephalitis) in warm-blooded animals. It is a zoonotic disease i.e. transmitted from one species to another, commonly by a bite from an infected animal such as dogs to humans.

Key Points:

♦WRD was initiated by Kansas, United States based Global Alliance for Rabies Control (GARC) and was first held in 2007.

♦It also marks the death anniversary (September 28,1895) of Louis Pasteur, a French chemist and microbiologist who had developed the first rabies vaccine.

♦There is a target to eliminate rabies deaths by 2030.

January 26, 2020

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