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Current Affairs January 24 2019

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Current Affairs January 24 2018INDIAN AFFAIRS

Cabinet Approvals with Foreign Countries on 23rd January, 2019

  • Cabinet approves MoC between India and Japan in the field of Food Processing Industry
  • Cabinet approves Memorandum of Understanding between India and Kuwait for cooperation on the Recruitment of Domestic Workers
  • Cabinet approves Amendment to the ‘Framework on Currency Swap Arrangement for SAARC Member Countries’ to incorporate ‘Standby Swap’ amounting to USD 400 million operated within the overall size of the facility………………………………………………Click  here to Read more

Cabinet Approvals on 23rd January, 2019
On 23rd January 2019, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi took a stock of decisions on various proposals. The details of the cabinet approvals are as follows:
Cabinet approves extension of Delhi Metro corridor from Dilshad Garden to New Bus Adda Ghaziabad
On 23rd January 2019, the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi led Union Cabinet approved the extension of 9.41-km-long Delhi Metro corridor from Dilshad Garden to New Bus Adda in Ghaziabad. The extension will form the second metro line in Ghaziabad and the first metro link connecting the interiors of the city.
Key Points:
i. The extended metro corridor will in the form of elevated lines and will comprise eight stations: Shahid Nagar, Raj Bagh, Rajendra Nagar, Shyam Park, Mohan Nagar, Arthala, Hindon River Station and New Bus Adda.
ii.  The newly approved line is the extension of the presently operational Dilshad Garden-Rithala corridor (Line 1) also called the Red Line and after the opening of the new section, the total span of Red Line will become 34.50 km.
iii. The total completion cost of the project is Rs 1781.21 crore and the centre had approved contribution of Rs 324.87 crore as central financial assistance for extension.
iv. The project will be implemented by the existing Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) of the Government of India and Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD) i.e., Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. (DMRC).

Cabinet approves creation of the National Bench of the Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT)
On 23rd January 2019, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi approved the creation of the National Bench of the Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT) to ensure better resolution of GST-related disputes. The National Bench would be set up in New Delhi.
Key Points:
i.  The National Bench of the Appellate Tribunal will be presided over by the President and shall consist of one technical member (Centre) and one technical member (State).
ii.  The main objective to create the bench is to fast-track the process of GST-related dispute resolution and hear appeals related to disuptes between states, as well as disputes between the Centre and states.
iii. The creation of the National Bench of GSTAT is based on the recommended by the GST Council and would incur an amount of Rs 92.50 lakh as one-time expenditure, besides the recurring expenditure of Rs 6.86 crore per annum.
iv.  The newly created Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal will act as the forum of second appeal in GST laws and will address the appeals against the orders in first appeals issued by the Appellate Authorities under the Central and State GST Acts.
v. The GSTAT has been created by utilising the Section 109 of Chapter XVIII of the CGST Act which empowers the Central Government to constitute, on the recommendation of Council, an Appellate Tribunal for hearing appeals against the orders passed by the Appellate Authority or the Revisional Authority.
About Goods and Services Tax Network (GSTN):
It is a non-Government, private limited company and was incorporated on March 28, 2013. The Government of India holds 24.5% equity in GSTN and all States and UTs together hold another 24.5%. Balance 51% equity is with non-Government financial institutions. The Company has been set up primarily to provide IT infrastructure and services to the Central and State Governments, tax payers and other stakeholders for implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST). The Authorised Capital of the company is Rupees ten crore only.
♦ Chairman: Dr Ajay Bhushan Pandey
♦ CEO: Prakash Kumar

Union Minister Gadkari laid foundation for Namami Ganga project in Agra and Mathura
On January 22, 2019, Nitin Gadkari,Minister for Road Transport & Highways, Shipping and Water Resources,River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation laid foundation stone for six Namami Ganga project in Agra and Mathura.
About the Project:
i. There were four projects in Mathura that cost of Rs 511.74 crore. Out of the four,two were sewage projects. The first one was a integrated sewerage infrastructure in the city on Hybrid Annuity Mode with the motive of ‘One-City-One-Operator
ii.  There is also a project for cleaning of 27 Ghats at a cost of Rs 3.60 Crore and to erdicte of Industrial Pollution, there is also a project for upgradation of infrastructure of Textile Printing units at the Mathura Industrial Area at a cost of Rs 13.87 Crore
iii. The projects in Agra included Sewage Scheme at 857.26cr and laying sewer house connections under the AMURT scheme at a cost of 353.57cr.
About Nitin Gadkari:
♦ Constituency:Nagpur
♦ He is the Union Minister of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation, Road Transport & Highways and Shipping

2nd World Integrated Medicine Forum 2019 Inaugurated in Goa
On 23rd January 2019, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for AYUSH, Shripad Naik inaugurated 2nd World Integrated Medicine Forum 2019 on the ‘Regulation of Homeopathic Medical Products; Advancing global collaboration’  held in Goa2nd World Integrated Medicine Forum 2019Key Points:
i. It is organized by the Central Council for Research in Homeopathy under the Ministry of AYUSH along with World Integrated Medicine Forum.
ii. The forum is expected to witness participation from 20 countries.
iii.The theme for the forum is “Regulatory collaborations, Converging on minimum regulatory & legal standards, Advancing safety and quality standards, Regulatory trend towards standardization and minimizing complexity, Recognizing homeopathy as distinct holistic medical system and Veterinary homeopathy”.
iv. The 3 day forum will identify and illustrate the benefits and faults of multilateral or bilateral collaboration and promote global cooperation.
v. Further development of evidence based traditional and integrated systems of Medicine by promoting public-private cooperation is the mission of the forum.
Union Minister of AYUSH: Shripad Yesso Naik
About Goa
♦ Capital- Panaji,
♦ Chief Minister- Manohar Parrikar
♦ Governor- Mridula Sinha

Exercise SEA VIGIL: Indian Navy Coordinates largest ever Coastal Defence Exercise 10 years after “26/11”
On 22nd January 2019, Indian Navy commenced largest ever coastal defence exercise SEA VIGIL in Indian Coast. It covered 7516.6km Indian Coastline and Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of India.

Exercise SEA VIGILKey Points:
i. The exercise is conducted in collaboration with Ministry of Defence, Home Affairs, Shipping, Petroleum and Natural Gas, Fisheries, Customs, State Governments and other agencies of Centre and States.
ii. The aim of the Exercise Sea Vigil is to validate the effectiveness of measures taken since terror attack in Mumbai on 26/11.
iii. It tests the country’s preparation to prevent any attempt to carry out attack or infiltration through sea route.
iv. Sea Vigil Exercise was a tri service exercise TROPEX (Theatre-level Readiness Operational Exercise) which is conducted by Indian Navy in every 2 years.
v. The Exercise will strengthen the national security as it gave a realistic assessment of strengths and weaknesses.

RPF women squad JOYTI BAHINIlaunched in Guwahati
On January 19, 2019,The Northeast Railway sector has launched a dedicated woman squad ‘JYOTI BAHINIto enhance security of women in railway station and trains.this has been launched in Kamkhya station of Guwahati.
Key points:
i. The squad is named afer the brave queen Ahom of 17th century.
ii. The ‘Joymati Bahini’ was launched recently by NF Railway’s Inspector General and Principal Chief Security Commissioner B B Mishra
iii. In case of emergency the number alloted to seek help of this squad is 182
Important facts about Assam:
♦ Capital:Dispur
♦ Governor:Jagdish Mukhi
♦ Chief Minister:Sarbananda Sonowal

Global Investor Summit 2019 in chennai
On January 23, 2019,Tamil nadu Government organised the 2nd edition of Global Investor summit in Chennai.This summit is to be concluded on January 24, 2019
Things happened in the meet:
i. The state government would soon unveil e-vehicle policy to give a boost to electric vehicles manufacturing in the state.
ii. In the opening ceremony Nirmala sitharaman was the chief guest and launched TN Aerospace and Defence Industrial Policy aimed at giving an impetus to the sectors.
iii.During the 2-day Summit,304 agreements were signed,which might worth over Rs 3 trillion.
iv.Confederation of Indian Industry is the organising chamber partner and the government had allocated Rs 75 crore for organising the event.
Important things about Tamil Nadu:
♦ Governor: Banwarilal Purohit
♦ Chief Minister: Edappadi K. Palaniswami (AIADMK)
♦ Capital: Chennai (Madras)
♦ Districts: 33


Coast Guards of India, Japan undertake disaster control exercise in Yokohama
On 23rd January 2018, Indian and Japanese Coast Guards started disaster, search and rescue exercises off the cost of Yokohama in Japan. ICGS Shaunak is the main Indian Coast Guard Ship taking part in the drills.
Key Points
i.Rajendra Singh, Chief of Indian Coast Guard and his Japanese counterpart Shuichi Iwanami reviewed the drills.
ii. The Coast guards of India and Japan was working together after the establishment of deeper ties between the two countries. Japan Coast guard visited India last year whereas in this year Indian coast guard has visited Japan.
iii. One of Indian Coast Guard’s largest ships, ICGS Shaunak which is a 105 metre class Offshore Patrol Vessel is carrying 100 officers and sailors of Indian Coast Guard.
About Indian Coast Guard
♦ Headquarters: New Delhi
♦ Director General: Rajendra Singh
♦ Motto: We Protect
About Japan
♦ Capital: Tokyo
♦ Currency: Yen
♦ Prime Minister: Shinzo Abe

India ranks at 54th position among most innovative countries: Bloomberg 2019 Innovative Index
For the first time, India has been ranked in the Bloomberg Innovation Index. India is ranked at the 54th Position with a score of 47.93 out of 100 among the world’s most innovative countries according to the Bloomberg 2019 Innovative Index.

Bloomberg 2019 Innovative IndexKey Points
i. South Korea has retained its top spot with a score of 87.38, Germany ranked second with a score of 87.30 whereas Finland has been ranked at the third spot with a score of 85.70.
ii.  The Annual Bloomberg Innovation Index ranks countries by analyzing their performances using seven metrics including Research and Development spending, Manufacturing Categories and Concentration of high-tech public computers.
iii. India, Mexico, Vietnam and Saudi Arabia are the new entrants in the Annual Bloomberg Innovation Index.


RBI Initiates Industrial Outlook Survey (IOS) and Services and infrastructure Outlook Survey (SIOS)
On 21st January 2019, The Reserve Bank of India has initiated two quarterly surveys named as Industrial Outlook Survey (IOS) and Services and Infrastructure Outlook Survey (SIOS) to examine the Indian Manufacturing, services and infrastructure sector and business situation for the quarter January-March 2019.

RBI Initiates Industrial Outlook Survey (IOS) and Services and infrastructure Outlook Survey (SIOS)Key Points
i. The 85th round of quarterly Industrial Outlook survey would be conducted by Hansa Research Group Pvt. Ltd and it will assesses business sentiments of the current quarter and expectations for the ensuing quarter (April-June 2019).
ii. The 20th round of Quarterly Services and Infrastructure Outlook Survey (SIOS) will be conducted by Spectrum Planning India Ltd. And it will assesses the business situation from selected companies in the services and Infrastructure sector in the current quarter and their outlook in the ensuing quarter (April-June 2019).
Reserve Bank of India
♦ Governor: Shaktikanta Das
♦ Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra

Anushree Jindal launches maiden biz venture Svamaan Financial Services
Anushree Jindal, daughter-in-law of JSW Group Chairman Sajjan Jindal has launched her maiden business venture –Svamaan Financial Services, a microfinance company with Rs. 10 Crore “Personal Family Money” as seed capital.
Key Points
i. Reserve Bank of India approved the application of Svamaan Financial Services as an RBI Registered Non-Banking Financial Company – Micro Finance Institution (NBFC – MFI).
ii. Svamaan Financial Services aims to promote financial inclusion for rural woman and micro-enterprises. It will operate initially in Karnataka and Maharashtra and plans to enter eastern markets of Odisha and Chhatisgarh by 2020.
iii. The Microfinance company will offer financial services to un-banked and under-banked sections of population and aims to impact the life of over one lakh customer positively by 2021.
About Svamaan Financial Services
♦ Founder: Anushree Jindal
♦ CEO: Kiran Kumar
♦ Corporate Office: Mumbai


Bihar State GDP Growth outshines nation’s growth: CRISIL
As per a report published by CRISIL (Credit Rating Information Services of India Limited), Bihar has been ranked the Top State in terms of Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) by clocking a growth rate of 11.3 per cent in financial year 2017-2018.
Key Points
i.  Andhra Pradesh has been ranked at second spot with GSDP growth rate 11.2 per cent whereas Gujarat has been ranked at third spot with GSDP growth rate of 11.1 per cent.
ii. Bihar was ranked at 8th spot with GSDP growth rate of 9.9 per cent in 2017.
iii. Madhya Pradesh which was the top state in 2017 with GSDP growth rate of 14 per cent has lost its top spot with a growth rate of 7.3 per cent in 2018.
iv. 12 out of 17 non special states performed better in 2018 as compared to previous five years. Jharkhand, Kerala and Punjab performed poorly and ranked at the bottom.
About Bihar
♦ Capital: Patna
♦ Chief Minister: Nitish Kumar
♦ Governor: Lal Ji Tandon

India 4th Most Attractive Investment Market for Global CEO’s: PwC Survey
On 21st January 2019, India became 4th most attractive investment market for global CEO’s as per PwC Survey conducted over more than 1300 CEOs in 91 countries. The report was released on the first day of the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting held in Davos, Switzerland.
Key Points:
i. India surpassed UK to become 4th most attractive destination where US remained on the top position with 27 per cent votes. India surpassed Japan last year.
ii. As per the survey, China’s popularity is falling but managed to be the 2nd most attractive followed by Germany in 3rd position.
iii. 85% of CEO’s believe that Artificial Intelligence would dramatically change their business over the next 5 years. 30 per cent of the global business leader believes that the global economic growth will decline in the next one year.
iv. India’s popularity falls marginally from 9% to 8% but In terms of CEO’s revenue confidence, India remains the most buoyant territory.
World Economic Forum
♦ Headquarters- Cologny, Switzerland
♦ Executive Chairman: Klaus Schwab


President of India Presents Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar
On 22nd January 2019, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, the President of India, presented the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar 2019 at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi.

President of India Presents Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal PuraskarKey Points:
i. The awards were presented in the presence of Smt Maneka Sanjay Gandhi, Union Minister for Women and Child Development and other dignitaries.
ii. The Awards were given in two categories- Bal Shakti Puraskar (erstwhile known as National Child Award) for which 26 children were shortlisted and Bal Kalyan Puraskar (erstwhile known as National Child Welfare Award) for which 2 individuals and 3 institutions were awarded.
iii. The Bal Shakti Puraskar award which is given in the field of Innovation, Social Service ,Scholastic, Sports, Art & Culture and Bravery carries a cash prize of Rs. one lakh, book vouchers worth Rs. ten thousand, a certificate and a citation.
iv. The Bal Kalyan Puraskar which is given in the category of individual and institution consists of cash prize of Rs. one lakh, a medal, a citation and a certificate for individual and consists of a cash prize of Rs. five lakh for institution.
v. A committee comprising experts from varied disciplines such as sociology, psychology, mathematics, science, art, music and sport selects the winners of the award through a rigorous process of critical analysis.
About Ministry of Women and Child Development:
♦ Minister: Maneka Sanjay Gandhi
♦ Minister of State: Dr. Virendra Kumar

JNPT becomes the only Indian port to be listed amongst the world’s top 30 container ports
On January 22, 2019,TheJawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT), India’s container port got listed in the top 30 container ports .
i.It managed to place itself 28th in the list,5 place up from the previous position.
ii.JNPT also launched their App service to facilitate better tracking of consignment and ease the trade process for their EXIM partners.

Gujarati poet Sitanshu Yashaschandra awarded Saraswati Samman for the year 2017
on January 22, 2019,The 27th edition of saraswati samman award ceremony was held in New Delhi. Eminent Gujarati poet Sitanshu Yashaschandra was awarded for his poetry collection, ‘Vakhar,‘ published in 2009.The 27th edition was organised by KK Birla Foundation.

Gujarati poet Sitanshu Yashaschandra awarded Saraswati Samman for the year 2017i. His poetry collection Jatayureceived Sahitya Akademi Award for Gujarati in the year 1987.
ii.  The 26th Saraswati Samman, 2016 was given to Konkani language author Mahabaleshwar Sail for his novel ‘Hawthan’.


Kristin Scott Thomas appointed as the President of France’s Cesar Awards
On January 21, 2019,Kristin Scott Thomas was appointed as the president of the French Academy’s most prestigious ceremony, Cesar Awards.This actress assumed the chair of president after it had been headless for past two years .

Kristin Scott Thomas appointed as the President of France's Cesar AwardsKey points:   
i. As a President, she will be opening the ceremony, that is set to take place in Paris on February 22.Nomination for this year’s award would be unveiled on Jan 23,2019.
ii. The President herself is a three-time Cesar nominee for her roles in “I’ve Loved You So Long,” “Leaving,” and “Sarah’s Key.”
Important facts about France:
♦ Capital:Paris
♦ President:Emmanuel Macron
♦ Recent news about France:
France introduced its own tax on January 1 ,2019, called “GAFA tax” ,it is named after big companies namely-Google,Apple ,Facebook and Amazon’s new two executives on post
On January 21, 2019, India’s largest insurance website and comparison portal and also owner of India’s leading  marketplace, and health-tech venture, had made two new appointments.They are as follows:
i .  Rahul Agarwal, as its new Chief Technology Officer (CTO)
ii.  Jayant Chauhan as its new Chief Product Officer (CPO).


Israel Successfully Tests Arrow 3 Anti-ballistic Missile System
On January 22, 2019,Israel successfully tested the Arrow 3 missile system from Central Israel,it is done in collaboration with American Missile Defense Agency.

Israel Successfully Tests Arrow 3 Anti-ballistic Missile SystemImportant Points:
i. Arrow 3 is considered to be the next step in the defence system,which would help the Israel Miltary Force to attack their enemies from a greater distance and greater height
ii. It is a long range anti-ballastic missile
Important things about Israel:
♦ President:Reuven Rivlin
♦ Prime Minister:Benjamin Netanyahu


Scientists Warn of Climate “time bomb” for World’s Groundwater
On 21st January 2019, scientists warn that if climate change is to have a significant effect on the world’s groundwater reserves, the future generations could be faced with an environmental “time bomb”.
Key Points:
i. Scientists from Cardiff University and a team of international collaborators have conducted research on groundwater and said that it could take over 100 years for groundwater systems to completely respond to current environment.
ii. Groundwater is the largest source of usable freshwater which is found in the underground cracks in soil, sand and rocks and More than 2 billion people in the world rely on groundwater as a source of drinking and irrigation water.
iii. Researchers found that groundwater in wetter, more humid locations will respond to climate change in short period of time while regions where water was naturally scarce had much more ability to deal with the situation.

Ten threats to Global Health in 2019:WHO
On January 22, 2019, The World Health Organization released a list of top ten threats to global health in 2019 and considered vaccination to be the effective weapon to prevent the same.

Ten threats to Global Health in 2019The top ten listed disease are
1. Air pollution and climate change:it is considered as a major risk factor to human as thr micro pollutants from various things affect every single part of the human cell.Burning Fossils is the major contributor
 2. Noncommunicable diseases:Noncommunicable diseases, such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease, are collectively responsible for over 70% of all deaths worldwide.This disease are caused due to the inactivity of the body so WHO decided in collaboration with government help them achieved the global target of reducing physical inactivity by 15% by 2030
3. Global influenza pandemic:WHO has set up a unique partnership which will ensure effective and equitable access to  vaccines in developing countries.
4. vulnerable environment:WHO will continue to work in developing countries to strengthen health systems so that they are able to respond to outbreak of certain viruses
5. Antimicrobial resistance:WHO is working with in this sectors to implement a global action plan to tackle antimicrobial resistance by increasing awareness and knowledge, reducing infection, and encouraging prudent use of antimicrobials.
6. Ebola and other high-threat pathogens:WHO designated 2019 as a “Year of action on preparedness for health emergencies”
7. Weak primary health care:WHO will work with partners to revitalize and strengthen primary health care in countries, and follow up on specific commitments made by in the Astana Declaration.
8. Vaccine hesitancy:refusal to apply vaccine is a direct threat to our lives,WHO along with its supports will create  awareness about vaccination and reduce the increase of diseases.
 9. Dengue:40% of the world is at risk of dengue fever, and there is around 390 million infections a year. WHO’s Dengue control strategy aims to reduce deaths by 50% by 2020.
 10. HIV:This year, WHO will work to introduce the self-testing device so that  people may know their status and can receive treatment in the case of a negative result
Important facts about WHO:
♦ Headquarters Geneva, Switzerland
♦ Head:Tedros Adhanom


Mohammed Shami is the fastest Indian bowler to reach 100 ODI wickets
on January 23, 2019,Mohammed Shami succeeded the indian record holded by Irfan Pathan to became the fastest Indian bowler to claim 100 ODI wickets.Shami got this milestone at his 56th match where as Irfan got in his 59th match.

Mohammed Shami is the fastest Indian bowler to reach 100 ODI wicketsThe world record is currently held by Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan


Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s Birth Anniversary
On 23rd January 2019, 122nd Birth Anniversary of the great Freedom Fighter Subhas Chandra Bose was celebrated all over the India.
Key Points
i. Subash Chandra Bose was a member of the Indian National Congress and later he formed Indian National Army also known as Azad Hind Fauz.
ii. Subhas Chandra Bose popularly known as Netaji was born on 23rd January 1897 and died on 18th August 1945.
ii. Recently 3 islands of Andaman and Nicobar – Ross Island, Neil Island and Havelock Island has been named as Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Dweep, Shaheed Dweep and Swaraj Dweep by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to mark the 75th anniversary of raising of the Indian National Flag by Subhas Chandra Bose.
PM inaugurates Subhas Chandra Bose Museum at Red Fort
On 23rd January 2019, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated the Subhas Chandra Bose Museum to mark the 122nd Birth anniversary of freedom fighter Subhas Chandra Bose at Red Fort in Delhi.

PM inaugurates Subhas Chandra Bose Museum at Red FortKey Points
i. The museum features different artefacts related to the Subhas Chandra Bose and Indian National Army (INA) including a wooden chair and sword used by Subhas Chandra Bose, medals, badges and uniforms.
ii. Prime Minister, Narendra Modi also inaugurated two more museums –”The Yaad–e-Jallian Museum” and “1857 War of Independence Museum”.
iii. The Yaad-e-Jallian Museum is made in the memory of people died in the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre in Amritsar, Punjab in 1919. 
iv. The 1857 War of Independence Museum showcases the heroism, sacrifices and valour shown by Indian Soldiers in the 1857 War of Independence which is also regarded as the first war of independence.
v. General Public can visit these Museums after 31st January 2019 because Red fort will be closed for general public visit till 31st January due to the Republic day and Bharat Parv celebrations.
About Delhi
♦ Chief Minister: Arvind Kejriwal
♦ Deputy Chief Minister: Manish Sisodia
♦ Lt. Governor: Anil Baijal