Current Affairs October 7 2019

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INDIAN AFFAIRS

Overview of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s visit to India
On October 03-06, 2019 Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina paid a four-day official visit to India at the invitation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. This is the first visit of Bangladesh PM since the completion of elections in both Bangladesh and India.
i. A total of 3 bilateral projects were inaugurated through video link. The three projects unveiled were in three separate but key areas like energy, skill development and people to people ties. They were

  • Import of Bulk LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) from Bangladesh.
  • Vocational training and
  • Social training facilities.

ii. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was invited as the Chief Guest at the 33rd edition of the India Economic Summit organized by the World Economic Forum (WEF) in partnership with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) from 03-04 October 2019. The theme for the 2019 summit was ’Innovating for India: Strengthening South Asia, Impacting the World‘.
iii. The India- Bangladesh Business forum meet was held on October 4, 2019. It was attended by Union Minister of Commerce & Industry and Railways, PiyushGoyal in presence of Bangladesh prime minister Sheik Hasina…………………….Click here to Read more

39th WCP for 2019 held at KIIT University, Bhubaneswar, Odisha
Chief minister of Odisha, Naveen Patnaik inaugurated the 39th World Congress of Poets (WCP) for 2019 at the Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology (KIIT) University, Bhubaneswar, Odisha. It was held from October 2-6, 2019 under the theme ‘Compassion through Poetry’. It was held for the third time in India.
Key Points:
i. It also presented Gandhi Prize for literature to eminent Gandhian and Anthropologist, Acharya Bhabananda, Honorary Diploma was presented to Padma Shri Bhabani Charan Pattnayak, noted Gandhian and Freedom Fighter.
ii. A statue of Mahatma Gandhi was unveiled and the public library Karamchand (Gandhi Library) was inaugurated…………………Click here to Read more

India to shift to BS VI vehicular emission norms from BS IV by April 2020
India will shift to Bharat Stage Six (BS-VI) vehicular emission norms from BS IV by April 2020 in order to curb vehicular pollution. This announcement was made by the Environment and Forest Minister Mr Prakash Javadekar in New Delhi.India to shift to BS VIKey Points:
i. BS6-compliant vehicles will be available in Delhi in April 2020 and BS6 petrol/diesel is already available in Delhi/NCR.
ii. A green logo and Quick Response (QR) coding system have been developed in order to differentiate green crackers from the conventional crackers.
iii. In order to tackle crop stubble, 18,000 machines are given to the farmers in Punjab and Haryana worth Rs 1150 crore.
iv. 113 Air Quality Index (AQI) monitoring stations are available in Delhi/National Capital Region (NCR) and 29 more will be installed in the coming days.
About BSES:
Bharat stage Emission Standards (BSES) are emission standards instituted by the Government of India to regulate the output of air pollutants from internal combustion engines and Spark-ignition engines equipment, including motor vehicles. The standards and the timeline for implementation are set by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) under the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC).

10th edition of Indo Maldives joint military exercise Ekuverin 2019 begin at Aundh Mil Stn, Pune 
On October 7, 2019 the 10th edition of the joint military exercise between India and Maldives named Ekuverin for the year 2019 begun at Aundh Military Station in Pune, Maharashtra. This 14 day joint exercise between Indian Army (IA) and Maldives National Defence Forces (MNDF) will be conducted till October 20, 2019.Ekuverin 2019Key points
i. Focus:  Under the United Nations(UN) mandate,the exercise focuses to enhance interoperability between the two nations in carrying out counter insurgency and counter-terrorism operations in a semi-urban environment while sharing best practices.
ii. Previous edition: The previous/9th edition of the exercise was conducted at Northern Area Headquarters, Lhaviyani Atoll, Maalifushi of Maldives in 2018.
About Ekuverin:
Ekuverin meaning ‘Friends’ in the Dhivehi language(official language of Maldives) was first conducted in 2009, Thereon conducted every year alternatively in India and Maldives.
About Maldives:
♦ Capital- Malé.
♦ Currency- Maldivian rufiyaa.
♦ President- Ibrahim Mohamed Solih.

Indian Army’s first mountain combat exercise ‘Him Vijay’ 2019 begun in Arunachal Pradesh
On October 7, 2019 the Indian Army’s first and biggest mountain combat exercise “Him Vijay” for the year 2019 begun at Arunachal Pradesh. It is an important exercise for validating the operational concepts of the newly raised Integrated Battle Groups (IBGs) to meet the requirements of modern warfare. The exercise has two phases, where the first phase will be conducted from October 7-10, 2019 and the second phase will be conducted from October 20-24, 2019. It is also the first-ever drill that military is hosting in northeastern states.

Key points
i. Focus: The key focus of the exercise is to test mobility, communication and coordination of fast-moving troops in difficult terrain.
ii. Participation: Around 4000 soldiers each in three battle groups are participating in this exercise which includes
troop mobilisation, mountain assault and air assault along with elements of special forces being part of it. Transferring of troops and equipment at the terrain of upto 15,000feet will be done by Air force and Army helicopters.
iii. Location: Inside the Indian territory from the Line of Actual Control(border between India and China), the exercise is done at an area spanning more than 100 kilometers positioned with annual ‘Op Alert'(exercise to curb the increasing movement of infiltrating militants from the border)  which the Army’s 3 Corps (Tezpur) and 4 Corps (Rangapahar) carry.
About Line of Actual Control:
♦ Abbreviation- LAC.
♦ Extent- 4,057 kilometers.
♦ Formation: Formed after 1962 Indo-China War.
♦ Areas bordered: the LAC traverses three areas of northern Indian states: western (Ladakh, Kashmir), middle (Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh) and eastern (Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh).

BANKING & FINANCE

IRDAI sets up 12-member working group to review the product structure of title insurance 
On October 3, 2019, The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has constituted a 12-member working group (WG)  chaired by T.L. Alamelu to review the product structure of title insurance, which covers any loss caused due to a defect in the ‘title’ of the property arising out of third-party challenges. WG will submit its report in 12 weeks’ time from the date of the order.
Key points:
i. Issues:  The move comes after the backdrop of a less than intended response to title insurance products as the total number of title insurance policies sold is minimal, despite availability for the last one and a half years .
ii. About title insurance: It is an insurance to provide indemnity to developers and the subsequent home owners of the property against losses and risks related to defects in the title of the property. It even covers issues which are not discovered prior to the commencement date of the policy………………….Click here to Read more

State Bank  launches debit card with EMI facility on POS
In order to provide a superior and affordable shopping experience to its customers, Indian multinational, public sector bank, the State Bank of India (SBI) has launched the “Debit Card EMI facility” for its existing customers. Under this service, the consumer can opt for an EMI (equated monthly installment) period ranging from 6 months to 18 months.State Bank launches debit card with EMIKey points:
i. Some other major benefits that customers get while using this service are zero documentation, no processing fees, no need for branch visits, instant disbursal and zero cost EMI at select brands.
ii. This facility can be availed in less than one minute, irrespective of the amount of balance in existing savings account. EMI will commence one month after the completion of the transaction.
iii. SBI debit card facility is available for those with good credit history. To know your eligibility , customers need to type DCEMI and send an SMS (short message service ) to 567676 from registered mobile number.
About SBI:
♦ Formation: 1 July 1955(as State Bank of India)
♦ Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra
♦ Chairman: Rajnish Kumar
♦ Tagline: The Nation banks on us ;Pure Banking Nothing Else ;With you all the way

Reliance Nippon Life AMC to rebranded as Nippon India Mutual Fund
On October 7, 2019, The largest Japanese life insurance company, Nippon Life Insurance has renamed Reliance Nippon Life Asset Management (RNAM) as Nippon India Mutual Fund (NIMF) after acquiring 75 % stake in RNAM from Reliance Capital for around Rs 6,000 crore.Nippon India Mutual FundKey points:
i. With the help of a 130-year-old Nippon Life’s international network, it will be helpful in expanding the company in the tier-II and -III cities to offer a range of products suited to the investors’ need on the debt side of the mutual fund industry.
ii. Sundeep Sikka will continue to lead the company with the same management team.
iv. NIMF runs as an advisor for India focused equity and fixed-income funds in Japan (launched by Nissay Asset Management), Korea (launched by Samsung Asset Management) and in Thailand (launched by BBL Asset Management) & controls offshore funds through its subsidiaries in Singapore and Mauritius, and also has a representative office in Dubai, thereby, catering to investors across Asia, West Asia, the UK, the US, and Europe.
About Nippon Life Insurance:
♦ Founded
:July 4, 1889
♦ Headquarters : Osaka, Japan
♦ President :Hiroshi Shimizu

U GRO Capital inks co-origination of loan agreement with BOB
On October 7, 20-19, U GRO Capital (formerly known as Chokhani securities), a technology-enabled lender to small businesses has signed  its first co-origination of loan agreement with public sector bank, Bank of Baroda (BOB)  with the aim to necessitate the joint contribution of credit flow with competitive rate of interest, to empower SMEs (Small and medium-sized enterprises) by using U GRO Capital’s co-lending technology platform ‘GRO-Xstream’.
Key points:
i.  Under the agreement, U GRO Capital will work as a customer outreach for BOB. Its GRO-Xstream enables smaller NBFCs (Non Banking Financial Companies) for co-lending partnership with U GRO & also offers big banks and other gigantic financial institutions to choose customers as per their selection criterion.
ii. U GRO had raised about $140 million from a stock of global private equity investors such as NewQuest, ADV Partners, PAG and Samena Capital & public market investors (such as Abakkus, PNB Metlife) in December 2017.
About BOB:
♦ Founded :20 July 1908
♦ Headquarters: Vadodara , Gujarat
♦ MD& CEO: P. S. Jayakumar
♦ Tagline: India’s International Bank
About U GRO Capital:
♦ Founded
: 1993
♦ Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra
♦ Executive Chairman: Shachindra Nath

AWARDS & RECOGNITONS

2019 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine jointly awarded to William G Kaelin Jr, Peter J Ratcliffe and Gregg L Semenza
William G Kaelin Jr, Peter J Ratcliffe, and Gregg L Semenza are jointly awarded 2019 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for discovering how cells sense and adapt to oxygen availability. This was announced by the Nobel Assembly at the Karolinska Institute, Sweden.2019 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicinei. The scientists identified molecular machinery that regulates the activity of genes in response to varying levels of oxygen.
ii. This discovery will help to form new strategies to fight anemia, cancer and several other diseases.
iii. The other prizes will be announced in the comings days.
About Nobel Prize:
Nobel Prize is a set of annual international awards bestowed for outstanding work in the fields of physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature, economics, and the promotion of peace.

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Goa origin Antonio costa re-elected as Prime Minister of Portugal
On October 6, 2019, The Socialist Party of Goa-origin Portuguese Prime Minister (PM) Antonio Luis Santos da Costa has won re-election of Prime Minister but failed to secure an absolute majority in parliament. It will have to form a minority government. Key points:
i
. Costa’s Socialist Party has won 36.6 % of the vote followed by the center-right Social Democratic Party (PSD) on 27.9%, its worst result since 1983.
ii. The general election witnessed nearly 11 million people to vote in the race for control of Portugal’s 230-seat parliament.
iii. Nicknamed “babush”, Costa is expected to renew his commitment to stick to budget rules.
iv. He joined the youth wing of the Socialist party in 1975 at the age of 14 & he came to power in 2015.
About Portugal:
♦ Capital
: Lisbon
♦ Currency: Euro
♦ President : Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa

Anumula Gitesh Sarma appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to Australia
On October 07, 2019, The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) of the Government of India notified that Mr. Anumula Gitesh Sarma was appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to Australia. He is an Indian Foreign Service (IFS) Officer of the 1986 batch. He succeeds Dr. Ajay M. Gondane.
About Australia:
Capital: Canberra
Currency: Australian dollar

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Health ministry launches eDantseva website and mobile application in New Delhi
The Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare , Dr Harsh Vardhan, has launched the eDantseva website and mobile application in New Delhi with the aim to provide oral health information collected from authentic scientific resources. He also released the Braille booklet and Voice over on Oral Health Education for the visually impaired individuals to access information, along with the oral health posters for pregnant women and children.
Key points:
i. eDantseva: This portal has the information about the National Oral Health Program & the list of all the dental facility and colleges, Information, Education and Communication (IEC) material and a special feature called ‘Symptom Checker’, which gives information on symptoms of dental/oral health problems, ways to prevent these, treatment solution, and also directs the user to find their nearest available dental facility………………..Click here to Read more

SPORTS

17th IAAF World Athletics Championships for 2019 held in Khalifa International Stadium, Doha, Qatar
The 17th Edition of the IAAF World Athletics Championships for 2019 was held at Khalifa International Stadium, Doha, Qatar from September 27-October 6, 2019.
i. The event mascot was “Falah”, an anthropomorphic falcon dressed in athletic gear in the maroon colour of the flag of Qatar. The 18th edition will be held in Eugene, Oregon, United States in 2021.
ii. Annu Rani became the first Indian to reach the finals of the women’s javelin throw event in the World Championships in Doha. She threw the javelin 62.43m in her second attempt and emerged as the fifth-best performer of the qualification round breaking her previous record of 62.34m. But she missed out the qualification for 2020 olympics.
iii. Avinash Sable in men’s 3000m steeplechase event finished in 8 minute 21.37 seconds and bettered his own national record of 8:25.23……………….Click here to Read more
Medal tally: Top 3 countries

RankCountryGoldSilverBronzeTotal
1United States1411429
2Kenya52411
3Jamaica35412

Novak Djokovic wins men’s singles title of 46th edition of 2019 Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championship in Tokyo
The 46th edition of the 2019 Japan Rakuten Open Tennis Championships was held from September 30–October 6, 2019, at Ariake Coliseum in Tokyo, Japan. Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic defeated Australia’s John Millman to win the first Japan Open Singles title and was also his 10th win in a tournament main draw debut. This event was part of the ATP(Association of Tennis Professionals) Tour 500 series of the 2019 ATP Tour.Japan Open Tennis ChampionshipsDoubles title:
The doubles title was won by France’s Nicolas Mahut and Edouard Roger-Vasselin by defeating Croatia’s Nikola Mektić and Franko Škugor. This was their first ATP Tour title as a team.

Overview of China Open 2019
The China Open 2019, an annual tennis tournament, was held at the National Tennis Center in Beijing, China, from September 30 to October 6, 2019. It was the 21st edition for the men and the 23rd for the women.
i. It was part of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) Tour 500 series on the 2019 ATP Tour, and the last Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) Premier Mandatory tournament of the 2019 WTA Tour.
ii. The total prize money from ATP was $3,666,275 and $8,285,274 for WTA.
List of Winners:

CategoryWinnerRunner
Men’s SinglesDominic Thiem (Austria)Stefanos Tsitsipas (Greece)
Women’s SinglesNaomi Osaka (Japan)Ashleigh Barty (Australia)
Men’s DoublesIvan Dodig (Croatia) & Filip Polášek (Slovakia)Lukasz Kubot &  Marcelo Melo (Brazil)
Women’s DoublesSofia Kenin & Bethanie Mattek-Sands (America)Jelena Ostapenko (Latvia) & Dayana Yastremska (Ukraine)
i. It was the 15th singles title of the career for Dominic Thiem.
ii. It was the third title of 2019 for Naomi Osaka and fifth in her short career.
About ATP:
Founded: September 1972
Chairman: Chris Kermode
About WTA:
Founded: June 1973
Chairman & CEO: Steve Simon

Pakistan’s pacer Mohammad Hasnain becomes youngest player to take a T20I hat-trick
Pakistani fast bowler Mohammad Hasnain became the youngest ever cricketer to take a hat-trick in T20I (Twenty 20 Internationals) cricket in the 2nd T20 match against Sri Lanka at the Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore, Pakistan during the Sri Lankan cricket team tour in Pakistan. He is 19 years and 183 days old. It was his second T20I match.Mohammad Hasnain becomes youngest player to take a T20I hat-tricki. He dismissed Bhanuka Rajapaksa (32), Dasun Shanaka (17) and Shehan Jayasuriya (0) off consecutive deliveries.
ii. He became the ninth player to take a hat-trick in T20I cricket and 2nd Pakistani cricketer.

Indian tennis player Sumit Nagal achieved a career-best ranking of 129 in ATP men’s singles
Indian tennis player Sumit Nagal, aged 22, from Haryana achieved a career-best ranking of 129 in the latest Association of Tennis Professional (ATP) men’s singles rankings 2019. He moved up six places from 135. Recently, he had become the first Indian to win a set against Roger Federer in the United States (US) Open held at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, New York, US.Sumit NagalKey Points:
i. The first place was held by Novak Djokovic (Serbia), followed by Rafael Nadal (Spain) and Roger Federer (Switzerland).
ii. In the doubles ranking, Juan Sebastian Cabal & Rober Farah of Colombia held the top spot followed by Horacio Zeballos of Argentina (3) and Nicolas Mahut (4) of France.

OBITUARY

Grammy awardee, Drummer Ginger Baker passed away at the age of 80
On October 6, 2019, English drummer Peter Edward Ginger Baker is familiarly known as Ginger Baker and co-founder of the rock band “Cream” passed away at the age of 80 in England due to old age ailments.Drummer Ginger Baker passed awayKey points
i. Born on August 19, 1939 in London, England Ginger Baker’s music career spanned for 6 decades and emerged as the first superstar percussionist. He won the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of fame in 1993 as a member of ‘Cream’.
ii. He launched a band in 1970 named band Air Force with his last Long Playings (LPs) in 2014 called “why?”. He was also credited as number three on Rolling Stones’ 100 Greatest Drummers of All Time published in 2006.

IMPORTANT DAYS

World Habitat day observed on October 7, 2019
The World Habitat Day is observed every year on first Monday in October all over the world. This year it was observed on October 7, 2019 with the theme “Frontier Technologies as an innovative tool to transform waste to wealth”. The aim of this day is to reflect on the state of cities and towns and the basic human right to adequate shelter.World Habitat dayKey points:
i. The theme for 2019 aims to promote the contribution of innovative frontier technologies such as automation, robotics, electric vehicles, renewable energy technology and artificial intelligence (AI) to sustainable waste management to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 11: inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable cities.
ii.  In 1985 United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) declared the first Monday of October as World Habitat Day through Resolution 40/202. It was first celebrated in 1986.
About United Nations:
♦ Founded
: 24 October 1945
♦ Headquarters :New York, US
♦ Secretary General : Mr.Antonio Guterres

STATE NEWS

HTSC pledges $ 2 mn commitment to Houston University to support Tamil language
The Houston Tamil Studies Chair (HTSC) pledged $2 million to the University of Houston (UH), United States to set up an endowment to study Tamil heritage. The initial $1 million pledge will create HTSC research endowment in the UH College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. The other $1 million will rename the endowment HTSC Endowed Professors. Tamil is considered one of the world’s oldest languages. The gift is part of the ‘Here, We Go’ campaign, the University of Houston’s first major fundraising campaign.
About HTSC:
The HTSC is a non-profit organisation founded in 2018 to establish the Tamil studies chair at the UH.

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