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Home Affairs minister Amit Shah inaugurated SCO Joint Urban Earthquake Search & Rescue Exercise (SCOJtEx)-2019
On November 4, 2019, the Union Minister of Home Affairs(MoHA) Shri Amit Shah inaugurated 4-days long Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Joint Exercise on Urban Earthquake Search & Rescue (SCOJtEx)- 2019 in New Delhi. The exercise which will be held till november 7, 2019 is organised by National Disaster Response Force (NDRF).
Aim: The aim of the exercise is to improve preparedness during disaster situation and to recognize procedures coordinating post-earthquake responses with participation of all the 8 SCO member countries.
- Events: The exercise will be conducted as per International Search & Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG) methodology & guidelines. During the exercise, SCO member states will undergo rescue exercises, panel meeting for disaster prevention, which will be followed by 10th Meeting of Heads of Departments of Disaster Prevention of SCO member States….Click Here To Read More
Finance minister launched 2new initiatives: ICEDASH & ATITHI in New Delhi
On November 4, 2019, the union minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Smt Nirmala Sitharaman launched two new IT (Information Technology) initiatives in New Delhi. They were “ICEDASH” and “ATITHI” for improved monitoring and pace of customs clearance of goods that are imported and to facilitate the arriving international passengers by e-filing of customs baggage and currency declarations.
- ICEDASH: It is an Ease of Doing Business (EoDB) monitoring dashboard, that enables the public to check the customs clearance time of import cargo in various ports/airports.
- ATITHI: ATITHI is an easy to use mobile app by CBIC, where international passengers can file customs declaration in advance….Click Here To Read More
First-ever movement of container cargo on Brahmaputra river announced
On November 4, 2019, the union shipping ministry announced 1st ever landmark Container Cargo consignment (movement of goods) to sail on inland waterways from Haldia Dock Complex (HDC), West Bengal to the Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) terminal in Pandu, Guwahati, in the river Brahmaputra. This approval was given in order to boost the connectivity in the northeast region.
i.The sailing vessel, M V maheshwari was flagged off by shipping ministry secretary Shri Gopal Krishna via video conference at Taratala, West Bengal. The voyage is for 12-15 days via National Waterway(NW)- l i.e., river Ganga, NW-97 (Sunderbans), Indo-Bangladesh Protocol(IBP) route and NW-2(river Brahmaputra).
ii.The movement of goods is allowed in the IBP route through Protocol on Inland Water Transit and Tracie (PIWTT) between India and Bangladesh.
iii.It is the first ever Integrated Inland Water Transport (IWT) movement, covering a distance of upto 1425km.
Founded- 27 October 1986.
Parent agency- Ministry of Shipping.
Wastelands in India at around 17% in 2015-16: NRSC’s 5th Wastelands atlas 2019
On November 5, 2019, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar, the Union Minister for Rural Development, Agriculture and Farmers Welfare & Panchayati Raj has released the 5th edition of Wastelands Atlas 2019. As per the atlas, which presents the changes in wastelands between 2008-09 and 2015-16, wastelands in India has estimated to the tune of 55.76 million hectares (Mha ) / 16.96 % of geographical area of the country i.e. 328.72 million hectares for the year 2015-16 as compared to 56.60 Mha (17.21%) in the year 2008-09.
i.The new wastelands mapping exercise has been carried out in district and state wise of different categories of wastelands area by National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) using the Indian Remote Sensing Satellite data. The previous editions for 2000, 2005, 2010 & 2011 has published jointly by the Department of Land Resources, National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC) & Department of Space.
ii.In India, the per capita availability of agriculture land is 0.12 ha(hectares) while the world per capita agriculture land is 0.29 ha.
iii.The wastelands have experienced positive change in the states of Rajasthan (0.48 Mha), Bihar (0.11 Mha), Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Mizoram, Madhya Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, & West Bengal.
Headquarters- Hyderabad, Telangana
Director- Santanu Chowdhury
Skill development ministry & IBM India jointly launches SkillsBuild platform
On November 4, 2019, In order to help the next-generation to compete in the global economy, Directorate General of Training (DGT), under the aegis of Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship (MSDE), has launched SkillsBuild platform in association with IBM(International Business Machines Corporation) India Private Limited, the Indian subsidiary of IBM.
i.A 2-year advanced diploma in IT(Information Technology), networking and cloud computing, designed by IBM & partners such as CodeDoor, Coorpacademy and Skillsoft, will be offered to faculties at the Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) & National Skill Training Institutes (NSTIs) under the program.
ii.Through this platform, students will get the knowledge about digital technologies, as well as professional skills such as resume-writing, problem-solving and communication & personal assessment of the cognitive capabilities and personality via MyInnerGenius.
iii.The platform is deployed with the support of forefront NGOs like Unnati and Edunet
iv.Earlier in 2018 , IBM & MSDE has launched the first-of-its kind ‘New Collar Curriculum.
Founded– 9 November 2014
Headquarters- New Delhi
Cabinet Minister- Dr. Mahendra Nath Pandey
About IBM India Pvt ltd:
Parent organization- IBM
Managing Director- Karan Bajwa
Harsh Vardhan inaugurates India’s 1st-ever global mega-science exhibition, ‘Vigyan Samagam 2019’, in Kolkata, West Bengal
On November 4, 2019, Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare, Minister of Science & Technology and Minister of Earth Science has inaugurated India’s 1st -ever multi-venue Mega science exhibition, ‘Vigyan Samagam 2019’, at the iconic Science City in Kolkata, West Bengal.
i.Organized by Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Department of Science and Technology (DST), and the National Council of Science Museums (NCSM), Ministry of Culture, the exhibition will be open till December 31, 2019 for public display and will showcase the world from micro to macro, unveiling the efforts of the international community in understanding the Universe.
ii.The will have the presence of prestigious projects and organisations such as the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), Facility for Antiproton and Ion Research’ (FAIR), India-based Neutrino Observatory(INO), etc.
iii.The 1st two units of Vigyan Samagam was successfully held in Mumbai and Bengaluru & After Kolkata, it will commence its final leg in New Delhi from 21st January, 2020 -20th March, 2020 at the National Science Centre. Thereafter it will remain as a permanent exhibition at New Delhi and will be taken care-off by NCSM.
About West Bengal:
Chief Minister- Mamata Banerjee
Governor- Jagdeep Dhankhar
2.31 lakh more houses under PMAY scheme sanctioned at 48th CSMC meeting in New Delhi
On November 1, 2019 Shri Durga Shanker Mishra, secretary of Housing and Urban Affairs ministry(HUA) approved construction of 2.31 lakh more houses under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Urban (PMAY- U). The approval was given at the 48th meeting of Central Sanctioning and Monitoring Committee (CSMC) under PMAY-U in New Delhi. With this approval, the house construction count has increased to 93.1 lakh and is expected that the target of constructing 1.1crore homes under the scheme would soon be achieved.
i.Participants:Total Seven states/UT participated in the CSMC namely Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Nagaland, Puducherry, and Uttar Pradesh.
ii.Andhra Pradesh, reached 100% of demand for housing with sanctions reaching 1.25lakh homes. Uttar Pradesh has also reached 97% of its demand with 52,000 houses sanctioned.
iii.With the sanctioned houses currently surpassing the 93lakh mark, 28 lakh houses have been completed or handed over to beneficiaries.
About Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs ministry:
Headquarters- New Delhi.
Minister of State(MoS)- Hardeep Singh Puri.
US formally moves to separate itself from the Paris agreement
On November 4, 2019, United States(US) secretary of state, Michael Richard Pompeo has formally submitted to the United Nations (UN) a declaration to withdraw from the historic Paris Agreement, saying the deal puts an “unfair economic burden” on Americans. The process of separation from this agreement will come into effect one year after the notification i.e on November 4, 2020.
i.The US joined the Paris Agreement in 2015, when Barack Obama was President. But it was withdrawn after the arrival of US President Donald Trump in June, 2017. The Obama administration promised that it would cut the US greenhouse mission by 26-28 % by 2025.
ii.The Paris accord : It is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), dealing with greenhouse-gas-emissions mitigation, adaptation, and finance, agreed in 2015. Under the Agreement, each country must determine, plan, and regularly report on the contribution that it undertakes to mitigate global warming .
iii.The US and 187 other countries committed to keeping rising global temperatures below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels and efforts to limit them even more, to a 1.5C rise. The US contributes about 15 % of global emissions of carbon.
It is an international environmental treaty adopted on 9 May 1992 with the aim to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.
Capital- Washington, D.C.
Currency- United States dollar ($) (USD)
Vice President- Mike Pence
50th World Economic Forum to be held in Switzerland in January 2020
The 50th edition of the World Economic Forum(WEF) is to be held in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, from 21-24 January 2020. The theme of the forum is fixed as ‘Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World.’
Telangana IT minister invited:
The president of the WEF Børge Brende, has invited Telangana Information and Technology(IT) minister Kalvakuntla Taraka Rama Rao, to the forum appreciating his work of launching various IT initiatives in the state.
Formation- January 1971.
Founder- Klaus Schwab.
Headquarters- Cologny, Switzerland.
Overview of P.M Modi’s visit to Thailand from November 2-4 2019
The prime minister of India Shri Narendra Modi paid a 3-day official visit to Thailand to attend India, East Asia- ASEAN (Association of southeast Asian Nations) and RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership) summits for strengthening regional cooperation in areas like trade, maritime security, and connectivity.
- The 35th edition of ASEAN summit began in Bangkok, Thailand, where it was inaugurated by Thailand Prime Minister Prayut Chan -o-Cha. The theme of the summit was “Advancing Partnership for sustainability”.
- The 16th edition of the ASEAN-India summit began in Bangkok. This was PM Modi’s first official visit to the country to participate in the India-Asean Summit.
- India decided not to join RCEP deal due to the failed negotiation related to the outstanding issues and concerns of New Delhi….Click Here To Read More
BANKING & FINANCE
RBI tightens liquidity management framework for NBFCs
On November 4, 2019,In order to strengthen the asset-liability management following the liquidity crisis faced by non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) in the past year, India’s central banking institution the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has tightened the liquidity management framework for these firms, which seeks to bring in a liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) of 100 % for them in a phased manner by December 2024.RBI extends rollout date for LCR norms to Dec 2020.
i.New norms: As per the new rules, which is to be strictly enforced from December 1,2020, NBFCs with assets of Rs 10,000 crore and above will have to maintain at least 50% of LCR as high quality liquid assets (HQLA), while those with assets of Rs 5000-10,000 crore will have to maintain 30% LCR & and build up to 100 % over four years.
ii.Exemption: The liquidity coverage ratio requirements were exempted to Core investment companies (CIC), small non-deposit taking NBFCs, non-operating financial holding companies and standalone primary dealers .
iii. ALM: RBI also proposed to revise the ALM (asset liability management) of NBFCs to ensure that the difference between inflows and outflows .The net cumulative mismatches for theses firms during 1-7 days, 8-14 days, and 15-30 days shall not exceed 10%, 10% and 20% of the cumulative cash outflows in the respective time period.
iv.Background: Earlier, the draft LCR guidelines had proposed that all non-banks will have to initially maintain 60% LCR from April 2020.
It refers to the proportion of highly liquid assets held by financial institutions, to ensure their ongoing ability to meet short-term obligations.
It is calculated by dividing a bank’s high-quality liquid assets by its total net cash flows, over a 30-day stress period.
Headquarters- Mumbai, Maharashtra
Formation- 1 April 1935
Governor- Shaktikanta Das
RBI issues new rules for the pay scale of senior officials of private, foreign banks
On November 5, 2019, India’s central banking institution, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has released new rules relating to the pay scales of full-time directors, Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) and Material Risk Takers and Control Function staff of foreign, private, small finance, payment banks and local area banks. These new guidelines will come into effect from April,2020.
i.The above category banks should adopt the overall pay system for all their employees and should also review it yearly.
ii.If the non-payment is up to 200 % of the fixed salary, then at least 50 % of it should be paid in other than cash mode. If non-cash pay exceeds 200 %, then 67 %of it should be paid in non-cash ways.
iii.As per the norm, whatever policy the above category banks adopt,the policy will cover all aspects of compensation structure such as fixed salary, performance bonus , Share-linked instruments like Guaranteed Bonus, Employee Stock Option Scheme, Pension Plan, Gratuity will also be included.…Click Here To Read More
ADB approves $451mn loan for Chennai-Kanyakumari industrial corridor power links in Tamil Nadu
On November 4, 2019, An international development finance institution,Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $451 million(mn) (about Rs 3,200 crore) loan to strengthen power connectivity between the southern and northern parts of the Chennai–Kanyakumari Industrial Corridor (CKIC) in Tamil Nadu(TN), which covers 23 of the state’s 32 districts and 70 % of the state population. The completion of the project has been estimated at the end of 2024.
i.The state government will provide $202.5 million out of the total cost of the project $653.5 million.
ii.An extra-high voltage 765-kilovolt (kV) transmission link will be installed to transfer the 9,000 MW of extra capacity from Virudhunagar in the southern CKIC northwards to Coimbatore and Chennai.It will be undertaken by tantransco (Tamil Nadu Transmission Corporation Limited), the state-owned company responsible for transmission.
iii.A 400-kV network will also created to collect power generated at renewable and thermal power plants in Thoothukudi district to Virudhunagar.…Click Here To Read More
MSTC signs agreement with Allahabad bank to develop e-auction platform
On November 5, 2019, An Indian state-owned e-commerce company,MSTC Limited (formerly known as Metal Scrap Trade Corporation Limited) has signed an agreement with Allahabad Bank, a nationalised bank for the process of developing an e-Auction platform aimed at selling non-performing assets (NPAs).
i.The platform will be directly linked with the Indian Banking Association’s (IBA) portal (https://ibapi.net) for sale NPAs through the SARFAESI (Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Securities Interest) Act,2002.
ii.once registered ,the bidder will be able to participate in auctions for all banks.
iii.It will also help banks oversee the NPAs through a streamlined process, which in turn, increase its revenue generation.
SARFAESI Act,2002 :
i.It gives detailed provisions for the formation and activities of Asset Securitization Companies (SCs)and Reconstruction Companies (RCs) & give powers to banks and financial institutions to take over the immovable property that is hypothecated or charged to enforce the recovery of debt.
ii.Securitization is the process of pooling and repackaging of financial assets (like loans given),Asset reconstruction means the activity of converting a bad or non-performing asset into performing asset & enforcement of security interests means, when the borrower defaults, to issue notice to the defaulting borrower and guarantor, calling to repay the debt within 60 days from the date of the notice.
Founded- 9 September 1964
Chairman & Managing Director– Bam Bahadur Singh
About Allahabad Bank
Founded– 24 April 1865
Headquarters– Kolkata ,West Bengal
MD & CEO- S. S. Mallikarjuna Rao
Tagline– A tradition of trust
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
Serbia’s Sara Dawnjanovic wins ‘Miss Asia Global 2019’ title held in Kochi
On Nov 5,2019, The 5th Edition of ‘Miss Asia Global Title 2019’ was organized at Gokulam Convention Centre in Kochi, Kerala. Sara Damnjanovic from Serbia has been crowned ‘Miss Asia Global 2019’, felicitated by Assem Yessengeldiyeva, who won Miss Asia Global in 2018.
i.Nguyen Thi Yen Trang from Vietnam won the ‘Miss Asia 2019’ Title, crowned by Honey Tianmia, who won Miss Asia title in 2017. Samiksha Singh from India won the sub-title of ‘Miss Beautiful Face’ Title.
ii.Leeseul Kim from Korea and Jeanyeer Ozbot from the Philippines were awarded the ‘Miss Asia Global first’ and ‘Miss Asia Global second runner up’ titles.
iii.The chief guest of this event was Yb Yeoh Soon Hin, the minister of tourism, Penang, Malaysia. The founder & chairman of the Miss Asia Global, Dr.Ajit Ravi, who was conducted this event to showcase the rich culture of the country and also to promote the tourism sector.
iv.The Next ‘Miss Asia Global Title 2020’ will be held in Malaysia.
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNATION
IPS officer Aditya Mishra designated Chairman of Land Ports Authority of India (LPAI)
On Nov 4, 2019, Senior IPS officer Aditya Mishra has been appointed as the Chairman of Land Ports Authority of India (LPAI).
- He is a 1989 batch IPS officer of Uttar Pradesh cadre.
- Appointments committee of the cabinet has approved the IPS officer Mishra for this post for the period of five years…..Click Here To Read More
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Pegasus: New spyware attack in WhatsApp to spy journalists & others, especially Indians
Facebook owned messenger app, WhatsApp recently confirmed that Israeli based NSO group, used a spyware called ‘Pegasus’ in WhatsApp to spy on govt. officials, journalists and activists globally, mainly Indians. The announcement was made after whatsapp sued NSO group and Q Cyber Technologies, in American court for illegal snooping (illegal private information gathering), which was earlier suspected to have made a cyber-attack in the app.
i.The spyware attacked the whatsapp users by just a missed video call. 1400 user attacks were reported in May 2019. The spyware has the capability to seize every detail stored in mobile device without leaving any electronic trace.
Official emblem for FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup India 2020 unveiled in Mumbai, Maharashtra
On November 3, 2019 the official emblem of FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup for the year 2020 which is to be conducted in India was unveiled. The emblem was unveiled by Fédération Internationale de Football Association(FIFA) and Local Organising Committee(LOC) at the launch event in gateway of India, Mumbai, Maharashtra.
The emblem was unveiled in the presence of Union Sports Minister shri Kiren Rijiju and All India Football Federation(AIFF) president Praful Patel.
i.FIFA Chief Women’s Football Officer Sarai Bareman, FIFA legend and two-time World Cup winner Kristine Lillyand and others were present at the event….Click Here To Read More
Tennis veteran Rafael nadal of spain reaches No 1 spot after one year: ATP ranking 2019
On November 4, 2019,As per the ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals) rankings 2019, Spanish professional tennis player ,Rafael Nadal Parera (33) has become the number one player in the world again with 9585 points after exactly one year by replacing Novak Djokovic who has slipped to number two (8945 points). This is the 8th time Nadal has reached the top.
i.Nadal has previously held the number one position on November 4, 2018. He is the second aging player to hold the number one position in the ATP rankings since 1973. Federer He became number one in 2018 at the age of 36.
Here’s the list of top 3 players in the ATP ranking 2019:
ii.In women’s singles, Australian tennis player Ashleigh Bartyholds the top spot with 7851. While, Karolína Pliskova of Czech Republic is in second place with 5940 points. Naomi Osaka of Japan is third in the rankings with 5496 points.
About ATP ranking:
It is the method used by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) for determining the qualification for entry as well as the seeding of players in all singles and doubles tournaments.
Lewis Hamilton won 6th F1 World Championship title at US Grand Prix 2019
On November 3, 2019 Mercedes’s Lewis Carl Davidson Hamilton (Britain), won the 6th F1 World Championship title, after finishing second in United States Grand Prix (US-GP) 2019. He also became the second most successful driver in the F1 history after former racing driver Michael Schumacher of Germany.
The winner of the US grand prix was Mercedes’s Valteri Bottas (Finland), while the third place was secured by Max Verstappen.
BOOKS & AUTHORS
Sahitya Akademi publishes new anthology called Modern English Poetry to mark 200 years of Indian English poetry
On November 4, 2019, Sahitya Akademi,an organisation dedicated to the promotion of literature in the languages of India, has published a new anthology called ‘Modern English Poetry’ by Younger Indians, which documents the contemporary poetry scene in India and the broader Indian diasporas to mark the 200 years of Indian English poetry .
i.Noted Poet, translator, and editor Sudeep Sen, has edited the anthology ,which contains pieces by 70 poets who are in their 40s or less.
ii.It looks like a Volume 2 to earlier edited (by Sen) the HarperCollins Book of English Poetry (2012). Both anthologies documents the last 70 years of Indian English Poetry with the representation of 150 of the best present day poets.
iii.Indian poetry in English is approximately 200 years old tradition as poets started writing poems in English as early as 1820.
iv.The year 2020 marks the second centenary of Indian English poetry.
About Sahitya Akademi:
Formation -12 March 1954
Headquarters – New Delhi
President -Chandrashekhara Kambara
World Tsunami Awareness Day is observed on November 5, 2019
The World Tsunami Awareness Day is observed annually on 5th November.This year promotes the target of “Sendai Seven Campaign”, which seeks to reduce the disaster damage to critical infrastructure and disruption of basic services.
- UN had invited all countries to raise awareness about tsunami and to share methods about risk reduction.It also suggested the UN office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) to make the observance of World Tsunami Awareness Day in collaboration with the rest of the United Nations system.
i.UN General Assembly established first ‘World Tsunami Awareness Day’ on
5 November in the year 2015.This day helps to create awarness about Tsunami among people to save themselves from Tsunami and also steps to reduce the risk.
ii.Reason for Nov. 5 has been chosen as World Tsunami Awareness Day:- November 5 has choosen from a real incident “Inamura-no-hi”(“burning of the rice sheaves”)which happened in Japan on same date during 1854 earthquake. A farmer has recognized the tsunami and set fire to his harvested rice to warn villagers.
iii.The Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO make effort to coordinate national and regional tsunami early warning services, raising global awareness about effective actions to reduce the disaster risk through its four Tsunami Warning and Mitigation Systems for the Pacific, Indian Ocean, Caribbean, and North-Eastern Atlantic, Mediterranean and Connected Sea regions.
Bihar banned 15-year-old vehicles in Patna & old govt cars in the state
On November 4, 2019 the Bihar govt, announced ban on usage of 15-year old cars in Patna and also on old govt cars in the entire Bihar state. The decision was taken by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar at a high-level meeting, to curb rising air pollution in some districts of the state.
i.Private vehicles older than 15 years will be allowed to ply only if they pass the pollution test which will be conducted by the govt in form of camps.
ii.Officials were also asked to investigate whether the brick kilns were using the latest technique to control pollution.
Deputy Chief Minister- Sushil Kumar Modi.
Governor- Phagu Chauhan.
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