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Current Affairs Today December 30 2017

We are here for you to provide the important current affairs December 30 2017 which have unique updates of all daily events from all newspapers such as The Hindu, The Economic Times, PIB, Times of India, India Today, Indian Express, Business Standard, all Government official websites. Our complete current affairs helps you to get more marks in Banking, insurance, UPSC, SSC, CLAT, Railway and all other competitive Exams.

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CAT December 30 2017

INDIAN AFFAIRS

Finance Minister Chairs the eighteenth meeting of the FSDC in New Delhi
Eighteenth Meeting of the Financial Stability and Development Council (FSDC) was held in New Delhi on December 29, 2017 under the Chairmanship of the Union Minister of Finance, Arun Jaitley.
i. Regulators presented their proposals for the Union Budget 2018-19 in context of the developments in their respective functional areas.
ii. FSDC has advised concerned Ministries/Departments to examine these proposals in detail for appropriate further decision…………………………..Click here to Read more

Kolkata Police bans public display of weapons in 2018
Kolkata Police has issued a notification that imposes a ban on public display of weapons in Kolkata, effective from 2 January 2018 to 1 January 2019.
Public display of weapons banned in Kolkata:
i. This notification was issued by the Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar. It bans carrying of swords, spears, bludgeons, etc. in any public place in the Kolkata town or in its suburb regions.
ii. The ban excludes persons exempted from certain provisions of the Arms Act and Rules, person who has permit from Commissioner of Police, Kolkata, and weapons covered under the Arms Act, 1959.
Some defence organisations of India:
♦ Bharat Dynamics – Ammunition and Missile systems
♦ Bharat Electronics – Avionics
♦ Defence Research and Development Organisation – Research and Development

Nirmala Sitharaman launches Centre for Entrepreneurship Opportunities and Learning (CEOL) in Mangaluru
On 29th December 2017, Nirmala Sitharaman inaugurated the Centre for Entrepreneurship Opportunities and Learning (CEOL), in Mallikatte, Mangaluru.CEOLCentre for Entrepreneurship Opportunities and Learning (CEOL):
i. The Centre for Entrepreneurship Opportunities and Learning (CEOL) is aimed to promote Startup India initiative in India.
ii. This centre is a part of the ‘Startup Coast’ project. When Nirmala Sitharaman was commerce and industry minister, she initiated this project using her Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) fund.
iii. This centre would create suitable ecosystem for startups and help generation of jobs. This centre is capable of hosting up to 70 entrepreneurs.
About Startup India:
♦ Launched – 2016
♦ Ministry involved – Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, Ministry of Commerce and Industry

Chhattisgarh signs agreement to lay 32,000 km optical fiber network
On 30th December 2017, the Chhattisgarh Government signed a MoU with Central Government for the 2nd phase of Bharat Net project.
Chhattisgarh signs MoU for 2nd phase of Bharat Net project:
i. A four-party agreement was signed by the union telecommunications department, Bharat Broadband Network Limited (BBNL), Chhattisgarh’s Information and Technology Department and Chhattisgarh Infotech Promotion Society (ChIPS).
ii. 32,466 km of optical fiber cable will be laid in 5987 Gram Panchayats of Chhattisgarh. The estimated cost for this is Rs 1624 crore.
iii. Manoj Sinha, Union Minister of State for Telecommunications, said that Chhattisgarh is the first state in India to use ring architecture technology to connect village panchayats by optical fiber.
iv .Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh said that a committee under Chief Secretary will make an action plan for the better utilisation of digital technology and submit its report in 4 months.
About Bharat Broadband Network (BBNL):
♦ Founded – 2012
♦ Chairman & MD – Aruna Sundararajan
♦ Services – Internet services

Nitin Gadkari flags off Cargo Movement on Brahmaputra River in Assam
On December 29, 2017, Union Shipping Minister, Nitin Gadkari flagged off cargo movement on the Pandu-Dhubri route (on National Waterway 2) along the Brahmaputra River in Assam.
Transportation through Waterways in India:
i. Mr. Gadkari stated that transportation of cargo through Pandu-Dhubri route will reduce logistics cost and save 300 km road travel.
ii. In recent years, Central Government has undertaken initiatives to tap the potential of India’s 14500 kms of waterways.
iii. Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) is working towards enabling regular cargo movement through inland waterways under the Sagarmala programme.
iv. Using waterways for transportation, especially cargo, is not only cost effective but also helps in decongesting the roads and rail network.
v. On a comparative note, one litre of fuel can move 24 tonnes per km on roads, 85 tonnes on rail and 105 tonnes per km on waterways.

Assam CM launches Skill Development Training Centres across the state
On December 28, 2017, Assam Chief Minister, Sarbananda Sonowal launched skill development training centres across the state.Assami .Mr. Sonowal  launched the centres at a programme organized by Department of Skill, Employment and Entrepreneurship at Srimanta Sankardev Kalakshetra in Guwahati.
ii. Assam State Government has already signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Government of Singapore for setting up a skill development centre having international standard at Mangaldoi. Over 10000 Assamese youth would undergo training in this centre.
iii. Assam State Government would also set up foreign language learning centres across the state which would help the youth in seeking job opportunities abroad.
Quick Facts about Assam:
♦ Capital – Dispur
♦ Current Governor – Jagdish Mukhi
♦ Current Chief Minister – Sarbananda Sonowal
♦ Important National Park – Kaziranga National Park

Centre approves Rs. 4066 cr for internet in all panchayats
On December 29, 2017, Communication Minister of State (Independent Charge), Manoj Sinha informed the Parliament that Central Government has approved Rs. 4066 crore for providing internet connectivity to people in all gram panchayats (GPs) under BharatNet project.
Internet Connectivity for Gram Panchayats:
i. BharatNet Project, was launched by Central Government in October, 2011 with an aim to deploy high-speed optical fibre cables across rural areas of India.Its ultimate goal is to provide broadband connectivity to all 2.5 Lakh Gram Panchayats in India.
ii. The project is being implemented by Bharat Broadband Network Ltd (BBNL), a special purpose vehicle (SPV).
iii. As on December 24, 2017, government has provided optical fibre connectivity to 108237 GPs by laying 252547 km Optical Fibre Cable (OFC).
iv. Government has set a target to connect all GPs with high-speed broadband by March 2019.

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

Pakistan to set up USD 1.51 bn hydropower project in PoK
Pakistan’s Government has decided to set up a new hydropower project of over 700 megawatts in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK).Hydro power projecti. The project has been named Azad Pattan Hydropower Project (APHP). It is a run of river scheme on Jhelum River located in the Sudhanoti district of PoK.
ii. The project will cost USD 1.51 billion. Funding will be procured from foreign entities. It is expected to be completed by 2022.
iii. Post completion, the project will generate 3258 GWh power, which is nearly 3 per cent of the Pakistan’s annual generation.
iv. For this project, Pakistan Government authorities have sought an import tariff at Rs. 8.05 per kilowatts.
Quick Facts about Pakistan:
♦ Capital – Islamabad
♦ Currency – Pakistani rupee
♦ Current Prime Minister – Shahid Khaqan Abbasi
♦ Important Rivers – Indus, Jhelum

BANKING & FINANCE

Government injects Rs 7500 crore funds into 6 public banks
Central Government has infused over Rs. 7500 crore equity capital in six stressed public sector banks (PSBs). These six banks are Bank of India, Central Bank of India, Dena Bank, IDBI Bank, Bank of Maharashtra and UCO Bank………………………………………..Click here to Read more
Amount of Capital Infusion:

Bank Amount of Capital Infusion
IDBI Bank Rs. 2729 crore
Bank of India Rs. 2257 crore
UCO Bank Rs. 1375 crore
Bank of Maharashtra Rs. 650 crore
Central Bank of India Rs. 323 crore
Dena  Bank Rs. 243 crore

Federal Bank Partners with Lulu Exchange to Leverage Blockchain Technology
On December 29, 2017, Federal Bank announced a partnership with Abu Dhabi-based LuLu Exchange to leverage blockchain technology for cross-border remittances.
Details about Federal Bank – Lulu Exchange tie-up:
i. In collaboration with Digiledge, a Bengaluru based fintech start-up, Federal Bank and Lulu Exchange have launched and successfully tested the service using blockchain technology.
ii. Blockchain technology helps organisations share data in a more trusted, distributed and extensively automated way and is thus rapidly transforming the financial and commercial world.
iii. By collaborating with multiple exchange houses abroad, Federal Bank has managed to hold a major share in the inward remittances market of India.
iv. Lulu Exchange is a leading global foreign exchange and money remittance company that caters to individuals as well as institutions across the world.
Quick Facts about Federal Bank:
♦ Founded in – 1931
♦ Headquarters – Kochi, Kerala
♦ Current MD & CEO – Shyam Srinivasan

SEBI tightens shareholding norms for rating agencies, mutual funds
At its board meeting held on December 28, 2017, Indian capital markets regulator, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) initiated following reforms:SEBIi. Net worth requirement for rating agencies has been raised from the current Rs.5 crore to Rs. 25 crore. Promoter entity in rating agencies would have to maintain at least 25% stake for a period of three years.
ii. Credit rating agencies have also been barred from holding more than 10% in another rating agency.
iii. In Mutual Fund (MF) industry, a sponsor of a particular MF cannot hold more than 10% in any other MF entity.
iv. All the stock and commodity exchanges can offer trading in stocks and commodities derivatives from October 2018. It implies that Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and National Stock Exchange (NSE) which are currently offering share trading facility can now start commodity trading, while commodity exchanges such as National Commodity and Derivatives Exchange (NCDEX) can start offering equity trading facilities.
Quick Facts about SEBI:
♦ Formed in – 1988
♦ Given Statutory Powers in – 1992
♦ Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
♦ Current Chairman – Ajay Tyagi

Ripple Surges 50% to become second-Largest Cryptocurrency
On December 29, 2017, cryptocurrency, Ripple surged almost 50% to $2.20 and thereby became world’s second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.
About Ripple and Market Capitalisation of Cryptocurrencies:
i. Owing to this surge, Ripple’s market capitalization reached $86 billion on December 29, 2017, surpassing another digital currency Ethereum ($73 billion market cap).
ii. Among all cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin currently has the highest market capitalisation of $250 billion.
iii. Ripple released in year 2012.
iv. In the context of this news, it is important to note that crypto currencies including Bitcoin are decentralised digital currencies which are not backed by any Sovereign Government, Central Bank or monetary authority.

BUSINESS

GAIL awards major contracts for Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga
State-owned natural gas processing and distribution company GAIL Ltd. has placed orders for another 400-km of pipeline under Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga natural gas pipeline project.GAILDetails about Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga Project:
i. 2655 km long Jagdishpur-Haldia & Bokaro-Dhamra Natural Gas Pipeline (JHBDPL) project is referred to as Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga Project.
ii .This gas pipeline project originates from Jagdishpur in Uttar Pradesh and extends to Haldia in West Bengal and Dhamra in Odisha while passing through Bihar and Jharkahnd.
iii .The JHBDPL project will supply environmentally clean natural gas to fertiliser and power plants, steel plants, refineries and other industries in above mentioned states.
iv. Orders for 2100 km pipeline have been awarded so far (including the latest orders for another 400-km of pipeline).

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Chander Prakash, Arun Sangwan appointed as Haryana State Information Commissioners
On 29th December 2017, Chander Prakash and Arun Sangwan took charge as State Information Commissioners of Haryana, in Chandigarh.
Haryana State Information Commissioners:
i. Chander Prakash is a retired IAS officer. Arun Sangwan is an advocate. They both took oath as State Information Commissioners of Haryana.
ii. Haryana Governor Kaptan Singh Solanki over saw the ceremony. Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar was also present at the ceremony.
About Central Information Commission (CIC):
♦ Formed – 2005
♦ Set up under – Right to Information Act

Vinay Sahasrabuddhe named as ICCR President
On 30th December 2017, President Ram Nath Kovind appointed Vinay Sahasrabuddhe as the President of Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR).ICCRVinay Sahasrabuddhe – ICCR President:
i. Vinay Sahasrabuddhe is the Vice President of BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party). He is also a Rajya Sabha member from Maharashtra.
ii. Vinay Sahasrabuddhe replaces Lokesh Chandra. He is also the vice-president of Rambhau Mhalgi Prabodhini, a training and research academy for elected representatives and voluntary social workers.
About Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR):
♦ Founded – 1950
♦ Founder – Maulana Abul Kalam Azad.

G Rajesham Goud to head Telangana State Finance Commission
On 29th December 2017, the Telangana government formed the State Finance Commission and appointed G Rajesham Goud as its chairman.
Telangana State Finance Commission:
i. G Rajesham Goud, former chairman of Karimnagar Zilla Parishad, will head the Telangana State Finance Commission as its chairman.
ii .M Chennaiah Kuruma, a retired Zilla Parishad CEO from Ranga Reddy district, has been appointed as a member of the Telangana State Finance Commission. Other members are to be appointed later.
About Finance Commission of India:
♦ Formed – 1951
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi
♦ Chairman – N. K. Singh

Amardeep Singh Bhatia appointed as Director of SFIO
Amardeep Singh Bhatia has been appointed as Director (at Joint Secretary Level) of Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO).SFIO
Amardeep Singh Bhatia – Director of SFIO:
i. Amardeep Singh Bhatia is a Nagaland cadre IAS officer of 1993 batch. He is currently Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Corporate Affairs.
ii. He has been appointed as Director at Joint Secretary Level of Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO).
About Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO):
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi
♦ Formed – 2003
♦ Purpose – works in major fraud probes

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

ISRO to launch 31 satellites in a single mission onboard PSLV
On 29th December 2017, ISRO said that, it will launch 31 satellites in a single mission on-board its Polar rocket on 10th January 2018.
ISRO to launch 31 satellites in a single mission:
i. This mission will be the first ‘Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle’ (PSLV) mission after the failure of IRNSS-1H launch in August 2017.
ii. Main payload of this mission is India’s Cartosat-2 series earth observation satellite. The launch will be carried out from the spaceport at Sriharikota and PSLV-C40 will be used for the launch.
iii. The mission consists of 28 nano satellites from other countries, one micro and one nano satellite, and one Cartosat satellite from India.
About Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO):
♦ Established – 1969
♦ Headquarters – Bangalore
♦ Chairman – A. S. Kiran Kumar

NASA’s Flying Observatory to explore Saturn’s Moon
NASA’s flying observatory is developing its 2018 observing campaign to observe celestial magnetic fields, star-forming regions, comets and Saturn’s giant moon Titan.Saturn MoonNASA’s 2018 observing campaign:
i. The observations have been scheduled between February 2018 and January 2019. Sofia is a modified Boeing 747SP jetliner which carries a 100-inch diameter telescope.
ii. This is a joint project of NASA and DLR, German Aerospace Center. Sofia will carry out the observations.
iii. High-resolution Airborne Wideband Camera-Plus (HAWC+), a new instrument, will continue research with its polarimeter.
About DLR:
♦ Headquarters – Cologne, Germany
♦ Administrator – Pascale Ehrenfreund
♦ Purpose – national center for aerospace, energy and transportation research of Germany

SPORTS

Jitu Rai wins Men’s 50m pistol title at the 61st National Shooting Championship
On 29th December 2017, Jitu Rai won gold medal in the men’s 50m pistol event at the 61st National Shooting Championship at National Games Shooting Range, Thiruvananthapuram, in Kerala.Jitu RaiJitu Rai – Gold in Men’s 50m pistol:
i.J itu Rai shot 10.8 on his 24th shot and won gold medal. He also created a new national record score of 233.
ii. In the final, Omkar Singh from the Navy and Jai Singh from the Army won silver and bronze medals respectively.
Some stadiums in Kerala:
♦ EMS Corporation Stadium – Kozhikode
♦ Fort Maidan – Palakkad
♦ Greenfield International Stadium – Thiruvananthapuram

OBITUARY

Mystery writer Sue Grafton passes away
On 28th December 2017, Sue Grafton, author of various mystery novels passed away in Santa Barbara, California, US.
Death of Sue Grafton:
i. Sue Grafton was 77 years old. She had been suffering from cancer of the appendix.
ii. She is well known for her alphabet novels. The alphabet novel series started from “A Is for Alibi” and ended with “Y Is for Yesterday.”SueAbout Press Trust of India (PTI):
♦ Chairman – Viveck Goenka
♦ Founded – 1947
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi