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INDIAN AFFAIRS

Overview of President Ram Nath Kovind’s visit to Odisha, West Bengal and Jharkhand
President of India, Mr Ram Nath Kovind visited Odisha, West Bengal and Jharkhand from September 27 to October 1, 2019.

  • On September 28, 2019, President Kovind presented Colours to Corps of Army Air Defence at the Army Air Defence Centre in Gopalpur, Ganjam district of Odisha in the presence of Army chief General Bipin Rawat, Odisha Governor Ganeshi Lal and Union Petroleum and Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.
  • President Ram Nath Kovind was welcomed by Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das on his arrival at the Ranchi Airport.  He addressed the 33rd convocation of Ranchi University in Ranchi, Jharkhand.
  • President Ram Nath Kovind met the Chief Minister of West Bengal Mamata Banerjee. He visited the National Institute for Locomotor Disabilities (NILD) in Kolkata………………………Click here to Read more

President of India, Shri Ram NathKovind presented 2019 Swachchta Ambassador award to Sachin Tendulkar in New Delhi at the 5th India Today Safaigiri Summit 
On October 2, 2019, on the occasion of 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the president of India Shri Ram Nath Kovind presented 2019 Swachchta Ambassador award to former Indian cricketer Shri Sachin Tendulkar during the 5th edition of India Today Safaigiri Summit held in New Delhi.2019 Swachchta Ambassador award to Sachin TendulkarKey points
i. While the United Nations(UN) had set sustainable development goals(SDG) to be achieved by 2030, India would be achieving it 11 years ahead of the schedule.
About Safaigiri Awards:
It is an initiative of the India Today Group.
The awards are given to felicitate individuals and organisations leading the change in cleanliness.
A total of 16 awards were given in the category Corporate trailblazer, community mobiliser, garbage guru, tech icon, toilet titan, river-cleaning initiative, water warrior, best sanitation app, cleanest religious place, cleanest city, cleanest school district, most effective swachhata ambassador, waste wealth creators, cleanest railway station, best sanitation skill training institution and cleanest village.

NBCC signed MoU with sports ministry’s Department of Sports for development of National Sports University at Imphal
On October 1, 2019, state-owned firm NBCC India Ltd (formerly National Buildings Construction Corporation Limited) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) with Department of Sports under the aegis of Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports(MYaS) in providing project management consultancy for development of National Sports University at Imphal, Manipur. The project worth is Rs 400 crore.
Key points
i. Recently the government-appointed P K Gupta as the new Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of NBCC
About NBCC:
♦ Founded- 1960.
♦ Headquarters- Delhi.
About National Sports University:
The foundation stone for the sports university was laid by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 16 March 2018 in Manipur.

In a first of its kind, IRCTC will pay compensation to passengers on delay
For the 1st time in India, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) will compensate for passengers of the Tejas Express (India’s first private train running on the Lucknow-New Delhi route ) if the train is late.IRCTC will pay compensation to passengers on delay Key points:
i. Compensation:
 If Tejas Express runs one hour later than its scheduled time, passengers will be paid Rs 100 and if this train was delayed more than two hours, Rs 250 will be given to the passengers.
ii. Insurance Cover: Apart from compensation, an insurance cover of Rs 25 lakh will also be provided free of cost to passengers, including insurance of Rs 1 lakh for theft or robbery during the journey.
Tejas Express:
It is the India’s first semi-high speed fully air-conditioned train introduced by Indian Railways. The Express will be flagged off on October 4, 2019 by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. This train will run six days a week.
About IRCTC:
♦ Headquarters
: New Delhi
♦ Services : Catering, Tourism and Online Ticketing

4th edition of KAZIND-2019, a joint military exercise between India & Kazakhstan begins at Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand
4th edition of KAZIND-2019, the joint military exercise between India and Kazakhstan commenced in Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand on October 2, 2019, which will continue till October 15, 2019, with the involvement of 100 soldiers from both the armies. It aims to carry out counter-terrorism operations in hilly areas.KAZIND-2019Key points:
i.
During this time the soldiers of the two countries will share experiences of various military operations and counter-terrorism retaliation.
ii. Various aspects of the emerging trends of global terrorism and hybrid warfare during military exercises have been included due to contemporary influences in current times as well as global scenarios.
iii. This joint military exercise will enhance mutual defense cooperation between the two countries. At the same time it will prove to be helpful in strengthening the bilateral relations between the two countries.
iv. About KAZIND: It is an annual event organized in turn in both countries.
About Kazakhstan:
♦ Capital: Astana.
♦ Currency: Kazakhstani tenge.
♦ President: Kassym-Jomart Tokayev

Telangana Peddapalli district  tops in 2019 rural Swachhta survey
On October 2, 2019 Peddapalli district of Telangana became first in the 2019 rural Swachhta survey (sanitation survey) to become the cleanest district in India. The most improved district in the list was Haryana’s Faridabad, which moved to second place in 2019 from its previous rank of 71 in 2018. Haryana’s Rewari district ranks 3rd in the list.

Among larger states, Tamil Nadu has topped the list from 11position in 2018. Haryana and Gujarat slipped to second and third positions respectively.
Key points
i. Survey reports: 83% of the citizens were able to manage liquid wastes, 84% were able to manage solid wastes, 72% districts claimed to have maintained ODF(Open Defecation Free) sustainability cell.
ii. The survey was carried out in 17,000 villages of 690 districts and were ranked based on the quantitative and qualitative parameters along with people’s feedback, and third party assessors’ direct observation.
iii. 3 crore citizens gave feedback for the survey through mobile app and 12 lakh responses were received via calls.
About Telangana:
♦ Capital- Hyderabad.
♦ Governor- Tamilisai Soundararajan.
♦ Chief minister- K. Chandrashekar Rao.
♦ Rivers-  Krishna River, Bhima River, Manjira River, Musi River.

Haryana had the highest number of dry districts: IMD data
As per the recently released report , “2019 Southwest Monsoon Season Rainfall and IMD’s Long Range Forecasts” by IMD (India Meteorological Department), Haryana had the highest number of dry districts, 19 out of 21, including three where rainfall was scanty.
Key points:
i. State wise: Haryana was the 2ndmost rain deficit state in India after Manipur(the most rain deficit with a recording of 56%). Haryana recorded rainfall of 255.2 mm against a normal of 438.6 mm, results to a deficit of 42 percent.
ii. Out of 36 meteorological subdivisions in the country, five subdivisions, however, received deficient rainfall, but deficiency was approximately 20% except for Haryana, Delhi (which has 5 dry districts out of 6)and Chandigarh where the deficiency was accounted around 42%.
iii. Over a third of the dry districts (52), are in the high-yield agriculture belt of Punjab, Haryana and west Uttar Pradesh, including Delhi.
iv. Around 30% of the districts in India received deficient or scanty rainfall during a normal monsoon year. But in 2019, due to higher rain, that figure is closer to 20% (968.3 mm).There were 254 dry districts across the country in 2018, when the monsoon was more than 9% below normal level.
V. The “deficient” rainfall in a district defined as rainfall that is 20% – 59% below normal. If the Deficiency of 60% or more, it falls in the category of “scanty” or “large deficient”.
About IMD:
♦ Formed: 1875
♦ Headquarters : New Delhi
♦ Director General: Mrutyunjay Mohapatra
About Haryana:
♦ Capital
: Chandigarh
♦ Governor: Satyadev Narayan Arya
♦ Chief minister: Manohar Lal Khattar

Drone Innovators Network Summit-2019 by WEF held in New Delhi
On October 1, 2019 Drone Innovators Network Summit-2019 focusing on the governance of drones was held in New Delhi. The summit was organized by the World Economic Forum(WEF) under the aegis of the Ministry of Civil Aviation. Minister of State(MoS-Independent charge) for Civil Aviation, Shri Hardeep Singh Puri addressed the event.Drone Innovators Network Summit-2019 by WEF Key points:
NPNT: Civil Aviation Requirements (CAR) for drones were issued by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation in December 2018. These regulations were needed to comply with the No Permission, No Take-off (NPNT) software programme to comply with the requirements on the Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) in order to get  DigiSky platform’s permission to operate drones in India.
About Ministry of Civil Aviation:
♦ Headquarters- New Delhi.
♦ Secretary-  Pradeep Singh Kharola

Amit Shah flagged off second Vande Bharat Express Train between Delhi and Katra
On October 3, 2019, Union Home Minister Mr. Amit Shah flagged off the second Vande Bharat Express train from New Delhi railway station. It runs between Delhi and Katra (Shri Mata Vaishno Devi), Jammu and Kashmir at a maximum speed of 130 km/hour and will cover the distance in 8 hours, reducing the travel time by 4 hours. It will halt at Ambala Cantt, Ludhiana and Jammu Tawi for 2 minutes each. The number of the train is 22439/22440. Amit Shah flagged off second Vande Bharat Express Train between Delhi and Katra Key Points:
i. The engine-less self-propelled Vande Bharat Express is a 16-coach all air-conditioned chair car service offering more onboard passenger comforts and is India’s fastest train.
ii. It will run all days of the week, except Tuesday and commercial run will begin from October 5, 2019.
iii. Railway Minister Piyush Goyal notified that the railways will connect the country from Kashmir to Kanyakumari before August 2022.
iv. Other members: Railway Minister Piyush Goyal, Union Ministers Jitendra Singh and Dr Harsh Vardhan were present at the occasion.
v. The first Vande Bharat Express train runs between Delhi and Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh.

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

MoU between Syria and India signed on upgradation of Syria-India Center for Excellence in IT 
On October 1, 2019, A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between India and Syria to upgrade the existing India-Syria Center for Excellence in Information and Technology (IT) to the Next Generation Center for Excellence in Information and Technology (NexGen-ISCEIT) situated in Damascus.MoU between Syria and IndiaKey Points:
i. The MoU was signed in New Delhi by Mr T. S. Tirumurti, Secretary (Economic Relations) in the Ministry of External Affairs and Dr. Riad K Abbas, Ambassador of Syrian Arab Republic to India.
ii. NexGen-ISCEIT will work on the concept of “Train the Trainers” and will help in rapid expansion of the IT Sector in Syria.
iii. Background: The Syrian-Indian Center of Excellence for Information Technology was inaugurated at the end of 2010 with the aim of providing the latest software and tools for ( IT) training. Later, it had to stop its activities due to the terrorist war on Syria.
About Syria:
Capital: Damascus
Currency: Syrian pound or Syrian lira

Ecuador to quit OPEC in 2020
Ecuador will quit Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) from January 1, 2020 due to fiscal problems. It will continue to support efforts to stabilise the world oil market. It is one of the smallest members of the OPEC.Ecuador to quit OPEC in 2020Key Points:
i. Ecuador produces about 545,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude and is attempting to increase crude production to raise more income.
ii. It is set to provide around $603 million in government income in 2020, assuming a crude price of $57 per barrel.
iii. It reached a $4.2 billion (3.42 billion pounds) deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in February 2019.
iv. Since January 1, 2019, OPEC, Russia and other producers have implemented a deal to cut output by 1.2 million bpd. The alliance is known as OPEC+. It is renewed until March 2020.
v. The country had joined OPEC in 1973, withdrew in 1992, then rejoined in 2007.
About OPEC:
Headquarters: Vienna, Austria
Membership: 14  countries — Algeria. Angola. Congo. Ecuador. Equatorial Guinea. Gabon. Iran. Iraq. Kuwait. Libya. Nigeria. Saudi Arabia. United Arab Emirates. Venezuela. ( When Ecuador will left then members will be 13 countries.)
About Ecuador:
Capital: Quito
Currency: US Dollar

BANKING & FINANCE

SBI, BoB limits cash withdrawals using micro-ATM transactions of other banks
State Bank of India (SBI) and Bank of Baroda (BoB) limited the cash withdrawals of customers using micro-ATMs (Automated Teller Machines) of other banks to 4 times a month. BoB permitted its customers to do 4 transactions a day while SBI limited it to 1 transaction. SBI account holders who are not part of the government’s direct benefit transfer (DBT) scheme are allowed to do 5 transactions a month.
Key Points:
i. It will cause a significant drop in transactions undertaken through the Aadhaar-enabled Payment System (AePS).
ii. Banks provide the service through micro-ATM terminals in areas where ATMs are not viable. Through micro-ATMs, banks can connect to their core banking system and help customers undertake basic financial transactions.
About SBI:
Headquarters: Mumbai
Chairman: Rajnish Kumar
Tagline: The Banker to Every Indian; With you all the way; Pure Banking Nothing Else; The Nation banks on us.
About BoB:
Headquarters: Vadodara, Gujarat
Tag line: India’s International Bank
CEO & MD: P S Jayakumar

Paisalo digital inks co-origination of loan agreement with BOB
On October 3, 2019, Paisalo Digital (Formerly known as S.E Investments Limited) has signed  its third co-origination of loan agreement with Indian multinational, public sector bank, Bank of Baroda (BOB) with the aim to necessitate the joint contribution of credit flow to empower farmers, MSME (Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) segment and small businesses.
Key points:
i.
Under the agreement,  Paisalo Digital will work as a customer outreach for BOB and will encourage loans between Rs 10,000 to Rs 40,000 in the rural areas with a special focus on Uttar Pradesh(UP).
ii. The tie-up will help support the vision of financial inclusion set by the central government by providing loans to a large unserved population of the country.
iii. On August 12, 2019, Paisalo digital has signed the 1st co-origination loan agreement (designed at Rs.10,000 to 2 lakh) with State Bank of India (SBI) to pay out 200,000 loan applications in 2019 (FY-Fiscal Year 2020). On September 20, 2019, It signed 2nd  co-origination of loan agreement with major public sector bank in India, Bank of Maharashtra (BoM).
About Paisalo Digital:
It is a leading systemically important non-deposit taking NBFC( Non Banking Financial Company), registered with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and is in operations since the year1992.
♦ Headquarters: New Delhi.
♦ Managing Director: Sunil Agarwal
♦ Objective : To ensure rural development, self-employment, and women-empowerment on small finances. It has AUM (Assets Under Management) of over 2000 crore and a net worth of Rs. 671.9 crore.
About BOB:
♦ Founded
:20 July 1908
♦ Headquarters: Vadodara , Gujarat
♦ MD& CEO: P. S. Jayakumar
♦ Tagline: India’s International Bank

 BUSINESS & ECONOMY

S&P Global Ratings projects India’s growth to 6.3% from previous 7.1% for 2019-2020
On October 1, 2019, the Standard & Poor (S&P) Global ratings has reduced India’s growth to 6.3% from its previous estimation of 7.1% for 2019-2020. The reduced growth projection is mainly due to decline in private consumption growth. It is expected that the growth rate of India would be at 7% for the year 2020-2021.S&P Global Ratings projects India's growth to 6.3%Key points
i. The slowed growth is also based on the fact that India’s eight infrastructure sectors contracted for the first time in more than four years in August according to the data released by the Department of Commerce and Industry.
About S&P:
♦ Founded- 1860.
♦ Founder- Henry Varnum Poor.
♦ Headquarters- New York, United States(US).

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS

Kyrgyz lawyer Azizbek Ashurov wins 2019 UNHCR Nansen Refugee Award
On October 2, 2019 human rights lawyer from Kyrgyzstan, Azizbek Ashurov was awarded the 2019 UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) prestigious Nansen Award. He was awarded for ending status of stateless people through his organisation Ferghana Valley Lawyers Without Borders (FVLWB) in Kyrgyzstan which thus became the world’s first country to end statelessness.Ashurov will receive the award comprising of a commemorative medal and a cash prize of  USD 150,000 prize money at a ceremony in Geneva on October 7, 2019.Kyrgyz lawyer AzizbekAshurov wins 2019 UNHCR Nansen Refugee AwardKey points
i. Background: During the Soviet era, which had no internal borders, people moved across Central Asia with only internal documentation. But soon after the Soviet Union was dissolved in 1991, new borders were established, that left many people stranded with now-invalid Soviet passports or no means to prove where they were born. Thus it made hundreds of thousands of people stateless throughout the region including Kyrgyzstan.
ii. With FVLWB founded in 2003, Azizbek provided free legal advice and assistance to stateless and undocumented people in the southern part of the country. It is the first time in the 65-year-history of the Nansen Award that was given to someone who works on statelessness that comes 5 years after the UNHCR launched a global campaign to eradicate the problem worldwide.
iii. So far, 220,000 formerly stateless people had obtained citizenship since the campaign’s launch.
About the Nanzen prize:
The prize is awarded annually after Norwegian polar explorer Fridtjof Nansen, who was the first high commissioner for refugees for the League of Nations from 1920-1930, the precursor of the United Nations.
About UNHCR:
♦ Founded- 14 December 1950.
♦ Headquarters- Geneva, Switzerland.
♦ High commissioner-FilippoGrandi.

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Tata communications named Amur S Lakshminarayanan as its MD & CEO
On October 3, 2019, Indian telecommunications company, Tata Communications has named Amur Swaminathan Lakshminarayanan as Managing Director (MD) and Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO). He succeeds Vinod Kumar, who has resigned from the company on July 8, 2019.S Lakshminarayanan as its MD & CEOKey points:
i. Prior to this appointment, Lakshminarayanan was President and CEO of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) Japan, Ltd. He also worked in the company as Global Head of Telecom, Media and Information Services, HiTech and Utilities, and Head of TCS UK (United Kingdom) and Europe.
ii. Lakshminarayanan will consult the Interim Management Committee of Tata Communications as the nominated MD and CEO. The Board of Directors of the company will appoint them as MD and CEO after getting necessary regulatory approvals. He has 35 years of experience in large areas.
About Tata Communications:
♦ Founded
:1986
♦ Headquarters: Pune, Maharashtra

Yes bank’s senior group president Rajat Monga resigns
On October 3, 2019 Rajat Monga, the senior group president and former chief financial officer (CFO) of Yes Bank resigned from his post. The announcement was made by the bank’s Chief Executive Officer(CEO) Ravneet Gill.
About Yes bank:
♦ Founded- Mumbai, Maharashtra.
♦ Headquarters- Mumbai.

Amrit Lugun appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Greece   
On October 03, 2019, The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) of Government of India notified that Mr Amrit Lugun was appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Greece. He is an Indian Foreign Service (IFS) Officer of the 1989 batch. He succeeds Ms. Shamma Jain.
About Greece:
Capital: Athens
Currency: Euro

Muktesh Kumar Pardeshi appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to Niue 
On October 03, 2019, The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) of Government of India notified that Mr. Muktesh Kumar Pardeshi was appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to Niue, with residence in Wellington, New Zealand. He is an Indian Foreign Service (IFS) Officer of the 1991 batch presently working as a High Commissioner of India to New Zealand. He succeeds Mr. Sanjiv Kohli.
About Niue:
Capital: Alofi
Currency: Niue dollar, New Zealand dollar

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Scientists excavate dried-up river in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh
A team of scientists from the CSIR-NGRI (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research-National Geophysical Research Institute) and the Central Groundwater Board, Ministry of Jal Shakti, have found an undiscovered, old, dried-up river in Prayagraj (formerly Allahabad), Uttar Pradesh termed ““ancient buried river” that linked the Ganga and Yamuna rivers , during the geophysical survey in the Kaushambi and Prayagraj region in December 2018.
Key points:
i. The Union Jal Shakti Ministry wants to develop this river as a potential groundwater recharge source.
ii. About the ancient river: It is around 4 km wide, 45 km long and consisted of a 15-meter-thick layer buried under soil.
These Palaeochannel (a remaining trace joins the Yamuna river at Durgapur village, about 26 km south of the current Ganga-Yamuna confluence at Prayagraj.
iii. A 7-member committee chaired by Professor K.S. Valdiya of the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR), has prepared a detailed report on palaeochannel on North-West India in 2016, which suggested that the mythological Saraswati River actually existed.
The ancient river was the lifeline of the North-Western states of India.
iv. Benefits: This new discovery will play a key role in the planning of Ganga cleaning and protecting safe groundwater resources.
About Uttar Pradesh:
♦ Capital
: Lucknow
♦ Chief minister: Yogi Adityanath
♦ Governor: Anandiben Patel

Scientists develop strongest silver ever, 42 % sturdier than the previous world record
A team of scientists from Vermont University of the United States (US) has developed the strongest silver ever – 42% stronger than the previous world record.
Key points:
i. The team has mixed a trace amount of copper into the silver, that transformed two types of inherent nanoscale defects into a powerful internal structure, due to the impurities are directly attracted to these defects. It also helps in maintaining its electrical conductivity.
ii. All existing metals have defects, which lead to undesirable qualities, like brittleness or softening.
iii. The research published in the journal Nature Materials.

SPORTS

Indian women chess player Koneru Humpy ranked world no 3 in FIDE 2019 rankings
Indian woman chess player Koneru Humpy, aged 32, from Andhra Pradesh was ranked world number 3 in the 2019 rankings released by Fédération Internationale des Échecs (FIDE) or World Chess Federation. She recently won the FIDE Women’s Grand Prix tournament 2019 held in Skolkovo in Russia and accumulated 17 ELO points to clinch the third spot with a global rating of 2,577.Koneru HumpyKey Points:
i. Chinese players Hou Yifan (2,659 points) and Ju Wenjun (2,586 points) were ranked first and second respectively.
ii. In the Open section, world champion Norwegian Magnus Carlsen held the first spot with 2,876 points. India’s five-time world champion Viswanathan Anand was ranked ninth with 2,765 points.
iii. In Juniors, China’s Yi Wei (2721 points) and in Girls Jiner Zhu of China (2507) held the top spot.

Australia’s Alyssa Healy creates world record becoming highest scorer in women’s T20I
On October 2, 2019, Australian cricketer Alyssa Healy created a world record for the highest individual score in women’s T20I (Twenty Twenty International)  by scoring 148 runs off 61 balls against Sri Lanka in the third and final t20I match of “Sri Lanka Women tour of Australia, 2019” at the North Sydney Oval in Australia. She surpassed teammate Meg Lanning’s previous world record score of 133 runs.Australia’s Alyssa Healy creates world recordKey points
i. Healy, recently completed 100 T20I appearances in the last ODI(One Day International) against Sri Lanka, and made century off 46 balls, the second fastest in history and fastest by an Australian. She also created record for the fastest T20 century by an Australian.

FIFA bans former CONMEBOL president Eugenio Figueredo for lifetime
FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) banned the former president of South American Football Confederation, commonly known as CONMEBOL (CONfederación SudaMEricana de FútBOL) Mr Eugenio Figueredo, aged 87, for lifetime due to bribery charges and fined Swiss Franc (CHF) 1,000,000 (€914,266).FIFA bans former CONMEBOL president Eugenio Figueredo for lifetimeKey Points:
i. He was accused of accepting bribe relating to “awarding contracts to companies for the media and marketing rights to CONMEBOL competitions” between 2004 and 2015 and had breached Article 27 (bribery) of the 2018 edition of the FIFA code of ethics.
ii. He had served as the head of Uruguay’s football association for nine years from 1997 and as CONMEBOL’s vice-president for two decades until 2013.

OBITUARY

Noted nephrologist and Padma Shri awardee H L Trivedi passed away at the age of 87 
On October 2, 2019, noted nephrologist (specialist in the study of kidney functions) and Padma Shri awardee Dr Hargovind Laxmishanker Trivedi passed away at the age of 87 due to age-related illness in Ahmedabad, Gujarat.He was awarded Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award, in 2015 for his contribution as a nephrologist to the society.Padma Shri awardee H L Trivedi passed away Key points
i. He was the founder-director of the Institute of Kidney Diseases and Research Center in Ahmedabad, Gujarat.

First-ever Kudmi writer & Konkani folk artiste M Gopal Gowda passed away
On October 2, 2019 famous Kudmi Konkani folk artiste M Gopal Gowda passed away at the age of 64 due to cardiac arrest. Having rendered more than 200 performances across the country, Gopal Gowda’s research write-ups on the Kudmi history, their dialects, culture, traditions and beliefs have appeared in Konkani and Kannada periodicals, research magazines and in textbooks. He was first-ever Kudmi writer.
Key points
Awards: For the promotion of Kudmi Konkani folk art, he had won various awards including the ‘Janapad Prashasti’ award of Konkani Sahitya Akademi in 2002, ‘Rajyotsava’ award of the Dakshina Kannada district administration in 2014 and Mandd Sobhann KalaakarPuraskar in 2017.

STATE NEWS

Uttarakhand CM launches awareness campaign called ‘Urjagiri’ to stop power theft
On October 2, 2019, The Chief Minister (CM) of Uttarakhand, Trivendra Singh Rawat has launched a public awareness campaign called ‘Urjagiri’ to stop the electricity theft and saving in Dehradun, Uttarakhand.'Urjagiri' to stop power theftKey points:
i.
The CM also directed to strengthen UPCL (Uttarakhand Power Corporation) Vigilance Cell to ensure effective action on power theft.
ii. Uttarakhand is second only to Gujarat in preventing line loss and power theft. After the formation of the state, distribution losses have been brought down from 29.52 percent to 14.32 %.
About Uttarakhand:
♦ Capital: Dehradun
♦ Governor: Baby Rani Maurya
♦ National Parks: Corbett National Park, Gangotri National Park, Govind National Park, Nanda Devi National Park , Rajaji National Park, Valley of Flowers National Park.

Odisha CM launched “Mo Sarkar” initiative for transparency in governance
On October 2, 2019 the Chief Minister of Odisha Shri Naveen Patnaik launched the “Mo Sarkar” initiative for ensuring transparency in governance focusing fully on the common public. It was formally launched at the  Capital Hospital and Saheed Nagar police station of Odisha. The programme will be effective at all the 30 district headquarters hospitals (DHH) of the State by October 30. The initiative will be completely implemented in all departments dealing with the delivery of public services by March 5 2020.
Key points
i. The initiative was launched under the 5T model which comprises of  Technology, Transparency, Teamwork, Transformation and Time.
ii. Under the initiative, cell numbers coming to all police stations and district headquarters hospitals(DHHs) will be registered and a Short Message Service(SMS) will be sent to the persons’ within 24 hours. In case of non receivance of SMS, a person can give missed call toll free number number-14545 for registering the number.

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