Read current affairs online with GK Eduwrap. It covers the last week current affairs in a comprehensive manner ensuring you prepare confidently for the general awareness for bank exams.
National – Across the India
1. The annual Camel festival was held in Bikaner, Rajasthan in the presence of foreign tourists across the world.
The camel festival was held from 14th – 15th January 2017.
Rajasthan Tourism Department and the Bikaner district administration has inaugurated this two-day festival.
2. Border Security Force (BSF) on Sunday launched operation ‘Sard Hawa’ at the western international border of Rajasthan, under which vigil will be beefed-up to check the instances of infiltration due to the dense fog in the area.
The operation will continue till 28th January 2017.
The purpose of the operation is to keep a hawk’s eye on the international border, where vigil has been beefed-up and officers have also been asked to be part of operation to motivate jawans.
3. Madhya Pradesh state govt has inaugurated a Scheme named “Digital Dakiya”.
Under this scheme, a Digital Postman referred as Digital Dakiya would visit door to door in both urban and rural areas.
This scheme mainly aims to train households especially women and elderly people about digitized transactions.
4. In a bid to provide last mile connectivity in far-flung areas, the biggest impediment towards a digital and cashless economy, the government is embarking on an ambitious project to provide free Wi-Fi hotspots at more than 1000 gram panchayats.
Apart from providing internet connectivity for mass use, the programme seeks to enable delivery of services like health and education.
Called Digital village, the pilot project will initially be rolled out in as many as 1050 gram panchayats.
5. The first edition of Asia -Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) International Television Dance festival was held in Hyderabad, the city with royal patronage for arts, literature and architecture, on January 15.
Prasar Bharti hosted the event.
The dance festival is conceptualized to bring the cultural diversities from across the world into limelight, by breaking cultural barriers.
5.India was ranked 92nd among 118 countries in the 2017 Global index of talent competitiveness (GTI) list.
The index measures ability of countries to compete for talent i.e. how countries grow, attract, and retain talent.
The index is produced by global business school INSEAD in partnership with Adecco Group and Human Capital Leadership Institute (HCLI) of Singapore.
Switzerland topped the overall index, followed by Singapore and the United Kingdom in second and third place respectively.
6. Kozhikode Corporation become first Elderly-Friendly Corporation in Kerala.
The Kozhikode Corporation state government has planned to setup Senior citizen’s club, Day care centers as a part of Vayomitram project for the welfare of the elder people in the state.
7. India ranked 60th among the 79 developing countries in 2017 Inclusive Development Index (IDI) released in World Economic Forum’s (WEF) ‘Inclusive Growth and Development Report’.
The index is based on 12 performance indicators and countries are ranked on IDI scores based on a scale of 1-7.
8. Karang, a small lake island in Manipur, has become the country’s first cashless island.
The Union ministry of Electronics and Information Technology under its Digital India programme announced Karang as the first cashless island in India.
9. Sitalpati or cool mat from Cooch Behar district has been recognized as an “intangible cultural heritage” by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
These mats are used for sitting or to hang on doors or windows during summer. The mats are made up of weaved green cane slips of murta plants which are indigenous to the region.
11. The Union Textile Minister, Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani has inaugurated 58th India International Garment Fair (IIGF) in New Delhi.
It will be held from 18th – 20th January 2017.
12. Minister of Railways, Shri Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu unveiled Mission 41k during the Roundtable Discussion with the External Stakeholders on Energy Initiatives of Indian Railways.
The aim is to save Rs.41000 crore in the next decade in Railways energy costs.
13. The Union Cabinet has given its approval to the proposal for India’s taking full membership of the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) Governing Council.
This decision involves payment of annual contribution of US $5,00,000 to the IVI (headquartered in Seoul, South Korea).
14. The Union HRD Minister Shri Prakash Javadekar launched a dedicated web portal ‘ShaGun’ for the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan at New Delhi today.
‘ShaGun’ aims to capture and showcase innovations and progress in Elementary Education sector of India by continuous monitoring of the flagship scheme – Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA).
15. Bengaluru has emerged as the most dynamic city in Jones Lang LaSalle’s fourth annual City Momentum Index of cities around the world, followed by Ho Chi Minh City of Vietnam and Silicon Valley in the U.S.
The Index tracks the speed of change of a city’s economy and commercial real estate market.
Top 10 cities in the JLL index are Bengaluru, Ho Chi Minh City, Silicon Valley, Shanghai, Hyderabad, London, Austin, Hanoi, Boston and Nairobi.
16. The Union Cabinet has approved package for augmentation of the Corpus of Credit Guarantee Trust Fund for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) for supporting Micro and Small Enterprises (MSEs).
With this, the corpus of the Trust has been increased from Rs. 2,500 crore to Rs. 7,500 crore and it will be fully funded by the Union Government.
17. The Union government will set-up ‘Indian Agricultural Research Institute (lARI) – Jharkhand’ at Gauria Karma Village in Barhi Block of Hazaribag of the state akin to one in New Delhi.
The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given the approval for the establishment of the institute.
The IARI-Jharkhand will have an estimated outlay of Rs.200.78 crores (100% ICAR share) on 1,000-acre land provided by the Government of Jharkhand, it is revealed.
18. After a TV channel and a website to promote digital payments, a nationwide toll-free helpline number ‘14444’has been launched to educate people and provide support related to cashless mode of transactions.
Government had sought Nasscom’s help in providing support on a mass scale to people.
19. The 10th edition of the Jaipur Literature Festival (JLF) began at the historic Diggi Palace, Jaipur, Rajasthan jointly by Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, veteran lyricist Gulzar, American poet Anne Waldman and spiritual writer Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev.
The theme of the 10th edition of JLF is The Freedom to Dream India at 70.
JLF is considered as the ‘Greatest Literary Show on Earth’.
20. President Pranab Mukherjee will inaugurate the 28th Dantan Gramin Mela in West Midnapore district in West Bengal.
He is on a four-day visit to West Bengal.
The fair will display the rural handicraft skills of the people of the region. The different goods ranging from textile to terracotta will be on display.
21. Indian Institute of Bombay is set to build a ‘Research Park’ for start-ups, and set up R&D centres in the institute for promoting entrepreneurship.
The development will help students get an industrial exposure into real-world applications of their chosen fields.
22. More than 3.81 lakh consumers and 21,000 merchants have been declared winners of NITI Aayog’s lucky draw schemes ‘Lucky Grahak Yojana’, (LGY) for consumers and ‘Digi-Dhan Vyapar Yojana, (DVY) for merchants.
The winners were declared at 24 Digi-Dhan Melas held both daily and weekly across the country. Delhi, Ludhiana, Panaji, Lucknow, Jammu, Bengaluru and Hyderabad were among cities in which the events were held.
23. Indian Railways has circulated a draft cabinet note for setting up a dedicated $5 billion Railways of India Development Fund (RIDF).
The fund will be anchored by the World Bank and will serve as an institutional mechanism for the national transporter to arrange fund from the market for its investments.
According to a top railway official, the fund will be managed independently by a non-government entity.
24. The Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha, on January 19, 2017 announced that the under UDAN (Ude Desh Ke Aam Naagrik) Scheme is likely to take off in February 2017.
Presently there are 75 operational airports in the country and after the implementation of UDAN scheme 43 new airports will be added.
The UDAN scheme aims to boost regional air connectivity to and from un-served and under-served airports and make flying more affordable. Besides, it also aims to provide various incentives to airlines.
25. Mobile users in India downloaded the most number of apps from Google Play app store in 2016.
With over 6 billion app downloads, India, which was in the third position in 2015, surpassed the US, as per a report by global app analytics firm App Annie.
Brazil took the third spot with a little over 5 billion downloads.
International – Across the Globe
1. China has handed over two ships to the Pakistan to safeguard the strategic Gwadar port and trade routes under the ambitious China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
These ships have been named as Hingol and Basol, after two rivers near Gwadar.
They will be part of Pakistan Navy and are equipped with state-of-the-art guns. They will be used to protect the sea-lanes in the Arabian Sea.
2. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) will be taking part in India’s Republic Day Parade 2017.
UAE will become the first-ever contingent of Arab soldiers to take part in this iconic event.
UAE’s crown prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan will be the Chief Guest of this parade.
3. The US President Barack Obama has recently announced to end his 20-year economic embargo on Sudan.
Based on the efforts by the Government of Sudan to improve the security in the region, this announcement was made.
4. Standard Chartered had completed three shipping deals worth more than $1.6 billion in recent months.
The deals include a $684.5 million up to 12-year facility for BW Gas JuJu LNG, a joint venture between BW Group and Japan’s Marubeni.
In November, the bank also structured a $350 million Islamic facility for National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri).
5. According to the recent World bank report, China ranked 12th in the world in terms of total tax rate.
Lou Jiwei, former finance minister and now head of the National Council for Social Security Fund, said the World Bank’s micro methodology differed from common practices in terms of the scope of indicators and choices of data.
6. South Korea is the world’s most innovative economy, followed by Germany, Sweden, Japan, and Switzerland, according to the latest Bloomberg Innovation Index.
South Korea notched top scores worldwide for manufacturing value-added as well as for tertiary efficiency, and was in the second place in R&D intensity, high-tech density and patent activity.
7. India became an Associate member of CERN on with the Indian government completing its internal approval procedures in respect of the agreement it had signed with CERN on 21st November 2016.
As an Associate Member, India will have full access to all data generated at CERN.
8. A new type of ‘three-person IVF’ has allowed a previously infertile couple to have a baby in Ukraine in world first.
The baby boy was born in Ukraine using a technique known as pronuclear transfer, a method experts have called “highly experimental”.
Doctors in Kiev fertilized the mother’s egg with the father’s sperm, and then placed the combined cells into an egg donated by a third woman.
9. Donald Trump, a real estate mogul and reality television star who upended American politics and energized voters angry with Washington, has sworn in as the 45th president of the United States, putting Republicans in control of the White House for the first time in eight years.
Ebullient Trump supporters flocked to the nation’s capital for the inaugural festivities, some wearing red hats emblazoned with his “Make America Great Again” campaign slogan.
10. India may assist the United Arab Emirates in developing its air defence system and repairing defence equipment to enhance its life cycle, besides providing offshore patrol vehicles as the Gulf country hopes to expand ties beyond its traditional partner Pakistan.
Robust defence ties is a key pillar of Comprehensive Strategic Partnership that India and the UAE plan to conclude during Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s visit to Delhi as the chief guest for the Republic Day.
Sports & Athletics
1. Gujarat team won its maiden Ranji Trophy title as it defeated defending champions Mumbai in the finals of the 2016 -17 editions on 14th January 2017.
Gujarat became the only team to be crowned domestic champions in all three formats.
The other three teams are UP, TN and Bengal. Gujarat won the Ranji trophy after long wait and first in 66 years.
2. Former India skipper and Bengal’s biggest cricketing icon Sourav Ganguly will now have a stand named after him at the historic Eden Gardens.
Four other stands will be christened after former player Pankaj Roy and former CAB presidents BN Dutt, AN Ghosh and Snehasnshu Acharya. The other one will be called the Jagmohan Dalmiya stand.
3. Indian footballer Jayesh Raimalani has signed for Club Esportiu JUPITER (CE JUPITER), Spanish Tercera division club based out from Barcelona.
He will join the Club’s U-19 team that plays in the National League. Jayesh will also play in its B Team that currently plays the Second Division of U-19 league system in Spain.
Awards & Recognition
1. The 62nd Filmfare Awards ceremony was recently held in Mumbai.
The event was co-hosted by Kapil Sharma, Karan Johar and Shahrukh Khan.
Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award: Shatrughan Sinha
Best Film: Dangal
Best Director: Nitesh Tiwari (Dangal)
Best Actor (Male): Aamir khan
Best Actor (Female): Alia Bhatt
2. Famous Bharatanatyam dancer Malavika Sarukkai has recently won the title of ‘Natya Kala Acharya’.
She has received this award at the inauguration of the Music Academy’s 11th dance festival.
3. Twenty-five children from different parts of the country have been selected for Indian Council for Child Welfare’s (ICCW) National Bravery Awards by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The children have been awarded on 24th Jan’2017.
The Bharat Award has been conferred to 8-year-old Tarh Peju of Arunachal Pradesh, who sacrificed her life to save two of her friends from drowning.
Roluahpuii and Lalhriatpuii from Mizoram, and Tushar Verma from Chattisgarh have been given Bapu Gaidhani Award posthumously.
The Geeta Chopra Award has been conferred on 18-year-old Tejasweeta Pradhan and 17-year old Shivani Gond of West Bengal who showed immense courage in fearlessly helping the police and the NGO in uncovering an international sex racket leading to the arrest its mastermind here.
The Sanjay Chopra Award has been conferred to 15-year-old Sumit Mamgain of Uttarakhand who displayed outstanding bravery in fighting a leopard to save his cousin.
4. Jacob Polley has won the 2016 TS Eliot Prize for poetry, joining the ranks of previous winners including Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney and Carol Ann Duffy.
Polley won the coveted £20,000 award with his fourth collection, Jackself, a sequence of narrative poems partly inspired by his childhood in Cumbria.
5. Indian actress Priyanka Chopra has emerged winner of the favorite dramatic TV actress trophy for her role in “Quantico” at 2017 People’s Choice Awards.
This is 34 old year actress second People’s choice win, having been named the favorite actress in a new TV series last year.
6. Former India cricketers Bishan Singh Bedi and Farokh Engineer are expected to be named in a six-member panel by the Supreme Court on Friday which will oversee the daily operations of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).’
The apex court is set to appoint a six-member panel as opposed to three out of which three members are most likely to be cricketers.
7. For the first time, a film made in a Himachali dialect “Saanjh” gets international recognition by grabbing best feature film award at International Borrego Springs Film Festival held in California, US.
The film emerged winner beating 750 other nominated films from across the globe.
Film director and producer Ajay Saklani hails from Mandi district.
8. ISKCON’s Govardhan eco village at nearby Wada taluka in Thane district has been conferred the United Nations award for taking innovative measures of ’sustainable tourism’ in country.
This is for the first-time India has won such recognition from the UN in the NGO sector, an ISKCON release said on Friday.
Books & Authors
1. Karan Johar’s best friend Shah Rukh Khan was present to launch the much talked about biography on the filmmaker’s life- “An Unsuitable Boy”.
The book captures details from Karan Johar’s life, starting right from his childhood to his entry into the film industry with a blockbuster of a debut.
2. Actor Rishi Kapoor launched his biography “Khullam Khulla” with wife Neetu Kapoor in Delhi.
Rishi Kapoor talks about the relationships with his father Raj Kapoor and his son Ranbir Kapoor, his career etc.
The book is co-authored by Meena Iyer.
Mergers & Acquisitions
1. The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has tightened rules for mergers and amalgamations by Indian companies in a bid to safeguard the interests of the public shareholders.
Holding of public shareholders post the merger cannot be less than 25%.
Similar threshold must be for institutional shareholders of the unlisted entity as well, post-merger.
The new rules will ensure that all classes of shareholders get an equitable treatment during mergers and acquisitions.
It will also stop practice using route of merger to get an indirect listing for an unlisted company.
2. The World Economic Forum and the UCSB’s Marine Science Institute have announced a partnership to improve health of world’s oceans and maritime resources.
The new partnership aims to protect world’s USD 2.5 trillion ocean economy.
Appointments & Resignations
1. BJP Mumbai unit chief Ashish Shelar has been appointed as Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) president.
He was elected as Vice President of MCA on 17th June 2015.
Shelar takes over from the former ICC President Sharad Pawar.
2. Public broadcaster Prasar Bharati named Rajeev Singh, member (finance) as interim Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at its board meeting in Hyderabad.
Singh will replace Suresh Chandra Panda who has been serving as interim CEO since November 2016, after full time chief Jawhar Sircar put in his papers in October.
3. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has constituted a committee to review life insurance product regulations.
Amitabh Chaudhary, Chief Executive Officer, HDFC Standard Life Insurance company, has been appointed as the chairman of the eight-member panel.
The members of the committee include K S Gopalakrishanan, CEO, Aegon Religare Life Insurance, Sai Srinivas, appointed Actuary, Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance and Sandeep Bakshi, CEO, ICICI prudential Life.
4. Delhi Police commissioner Alok Kumar Verma, a 1979 batch Indian Police Service officer of the Arunachal Pradesh-Goa-Mizoram and Union Territory (AGMUT) cadre, has been appointed the director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), an official said on Thursday.
His appointment as the CBI director is his 24th posting in his 36-year career as a police officer.
Economics & Banking GK
1. The World Economic Outlook (WEO) update released by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has cut India’s growth rate for the fiscal year 2016 -17 to 6.6% from its previous estimate of 7.6%.
India’s growth rate was cut due to the temporary negative consumption shock of demonetization.
It has dampened India’s growth by 1% point in the FY 2017 and 0.4% point in FY 2017, compared with IMF’s earlier projections.
2. Market regulator SEBI reduced its turnover fees by 25% to Rs.15 per Rs.11 crore worth of turnover from Rs.20 earlier, to bring down the overall cost of transaction in the stock market.
The SEBI decision would lead to lower trading costs for large institutional investors like insurance companies, foreign investors and mutual funds, and also high net worth investors.
3. India will likely to be able to roll out the goods and services tax (GST) from 1st July following a breakthrough over the seemingly intractable issue of tax administration after the Centre accommodated state’s concerns.
Under the proposed tax regime, 90% of all assesses with a turnover of Rs.1.5 crore or less will be assessed for scrutiny and audit by state authorities, the remaining 10% by the Centre.
4. Future Group’s fashion and lifestyle departmental store Central and SBI Card announced the launch of a co-branded credit card, to offer benefits to consumers in the premium lifestyle and fashion space.
The Central SBI co-brand Card is the second by SBI Card and Future Group, after Fbb SBI STYLEUP Card introduced earlier in partnership with Big Bazaar and targeted at the value conscious consumer looking for affordable fashion.
The Central SBI SELECT and SELECT plus Cards offer an accelerated reward points structure, where cardholders earn 20 reward points for every Rs 100 spent in Central stores.
5. Yes Bank, in collaboration with T-Hub, has launched ‘Yes Fintech’, a business accelerator program.
T-hub is a startup incubator set up by the Telangana Government and Anthill, a speed scaling platform for early growth stage start-ups.
6. Mid -sized private sector lender Yes bank claimed to have the industry’s first customizable savings account which will protect customers from “unwanted charges” levied in current offerings.
Customers can choose from options like debit cards, alternatives to minimum balance requirements, and banking benefits such as ATM usage, digital banking products, branch banking and family grouping.
7. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has given its ‘in principle’ approval for listing the five Public Sector General Insurance Companies (2016-17) in the stock exchanges.
They are New India Assurance Company Ltd, United India Insurance Company Ltd, Oriental Insurance Company Ltd, National Insurance Company Ltd and General Insurance Corporation of India.
8. Mortgage lender HDFC Ltd has slashed the lending rate by 0.15 per cent for its existing customers.
The company has reduced its Retail Prime Lending Rate (RPLR) by 0.15 per cent with effect from today, HDFC Ltd said in a statement.
The reduction in RPLR will also be applicable on loans to Non-Resident Indians (NRIs)/PIO’s card holders.
9. The government has announced that cooperative banks will not be authorized to accept deposits under the Pradhan Mantry Garib Kalyan Deposit Scheme.
Under the scheme, all those who are declaring previously undisclosed income under the Scheme have to place 25% of the amount being declared in an interest-free fixed deposit with a lock-in period of four years.
10. The Gujarat government declared a monthly salary hike of up to 124 per cent for its fixed-wage employees.
The government made the announcement even as its appeal before the Supreme Court against a Gujarat High Court verdict dismissing the policy of hiring employees on fixed wages remained pending.
11. INS Vikramaditya will soon to have an ATM onboard.
The cash dispensing machine will operate via a satellite communication link.
Vikramaditya will be the first ever warship to have such facility.
Earlier, INS VIRAAT was equipped with a telephone link based ATM with limited access.
State Bank of India will launch the ATM facility onboard premier warship.
Bills – New & Amendments
1. The Union Cabinet has given its approval for amendment in the Modified Special Incentive Package Scheme (M-SIPS) for electronics manufacturing.
These modifications will further incentivize investments in electronic sector and move towards Union Government’s goal of ‘Net Zero Imports’ in electronics by 2020.
The scheme provides subsidy for capital expenditure 20% for investments in Special Economic Zones (SEZs) and 25% in non-SEZs.
2. The Union government cleared Tamil Nadu government’s proposal to promulgate an ordinance to hold Jallikatu, a traditional bull taming sport.
The Union Ministries of Home, Law and Environment has vetted the state’s draft ordinance and cleared the amendment. Now, Tamil Nadu Governor can promulgate ordinance as per Article 213 of the constitution.
The ordinance will denotify the bull from the list of performing animals. This will ensure that provisions of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act (PCA), 1960 will not apply to the bull.
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
1. All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi signed MoUs with NBCC (India) Limited, HSCC (India) Limited and with HITES HLL Life Care Ltd to expand infrastructure and other facilities.
The signing ceremony was presided over by Shri J P Nadda, Hon’ble Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare and Shri Venkaiah Naidu, Hon’ble Union Minister for Urban Development, Urban Poverty Alleviation, and Information & Broadcasting.
2. The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved negotiating for Trade Agreement with Peru on trade in goods, services and investment.
A Joint Study Group (JSG) between India and Peru was constituted in order to explore the possibility for entering into trade agreement with Peru on 15th January, 2015.
3. Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) member-states have finalized Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) for cooperation in small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) sector.
The MoUs were finalized during the Workshop on MSME Cooperation amongst IORA member countries held in New Delhi. They will take effect for each party upon signature by 5 countries.
4. India and the UAE held the first meeting of their strategic dialogue in New Delhi to elevate the bilateral relationship to Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.
The meeting was co-chaired by Minister of State (MoS) for External Affairs M J Akbar and MoS in Ministry of Foreign Affairs of UAE Anwar Gargash.
The news areas include energy security, renewable energy, defence and security, electronics and information technology and space.
They also agreed on several new initiatives to further strengthen the bilateral cooperation and on signing of fresh instruments of cooperation.
5. Dairy firm Kwality Ltd has signed an agreement with Bank of Baroda for providing Rs 4,000 crore loans to the former’s one lakh farmers from whom the company procures milk.
The company has a network of about 3.25 lakh across about 4,500 villages in Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Rajasthan which are amongst the largest milk producing states of India.
The scheme is aimed at providing financial assistance to improve socio-economic lives of farmers and steer them towards digitization.
Science & Technology
1. US based rocket manufacturing company SpaceX successfully launched constellation of 10 satellites into orbit on board of its two stage Falcon 9 Rocket from the Vandenberg Air Force Base, California.
The satellites were deployed into the designated to low-Earth orbit about an hour after launch. Besides, rocket’s first stag also landed upright on a so-called drone ship in the Pacific Ocean south of Vandenberg.
2. BSNL has launched its Customer Acquisition and Customer Communication Management (CACMS) project.
This project mainly aims to digitalize business process to provide secure and faster service and customer satisfaction.
The project provides an Aadhar based e-KYC (Know Your Customer) service for immediate activation of new mobile connections across the country.
3. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has approved a mission to explore 16 Psyche, an iron-rich asteroid.
As part of the mission, NASA craft will be launched in 2023, and will arrive at Psyche in 2030. The mineral contents on the asteroids are worth over 100-thousand times the value of the entire world economy.
The study of Psyche may also reveal more information about the centre of our planet, which cannot be studied directly due to the virtual impossibility of sending a probe deep underground.
4. The Commerce Secretary has launched a mobile app named ‘SEZ India’ for Special Economic Zones (SEZs).
It will help the SEZ Units and Developers to find information easily and track their transactions on Online System.
It will also facilitate them to file all their transactions digitally through SEZ Online system and track the status on the go through the SEZ India mobile app.
5. Indian Space Research Organization has successfully realigned the orbit of its Mars Orbiter Mission ‘Mangalyaan‘ so it is not affected by long-duration eclipse.
The duration of the eclipse was so long that had we done nothing, the Mangalyaan’s battery capacity would have got exhausted due to lack of sun rays. No effect of the eclipse was felt on Mangalyaan yesterday.
6. Scientists have named three relatively little-known diseases, MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome), Lassa fever and Nipah virus as the next potential global health emergency threat.
In this regard, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) has committed 460 million dollars to speed up vaccine development for these three diseases.
CEPI aims to have two new experimental vaccines ready for each disease within five years to be prepared in case of their global outbreaks.
7. Tamil Nadu Tourism minister Vellamandi N. Natarajan launched the mobile application named “Pinakin” in Tamil and English.
The mobile app is a part of its efforts to attract more domestic and international visitors to explore the state.
8. State run power equipment maker BHEL said it has commissioned another 500 MW unit of Sagardighi Thermal Power Station Phase II in West Bengal.
The unit was the second 500 MW set to be commissioned at Sagardighi Thermal Power Station (TPS) Phase II project in Murshidabad district of West Bengal.
1. Each year, by Presidential Proclamation, 16th January is declared Religious Freedom Day.
Since 1993, the President of the United States has proclaimed January 16 National Religious Freedom Day.
The Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom was signed on 16th January 1786, and is commemorated each year on National Religious Freedom Day.
Recent Notable Deaths
1. Professor C.V. Vishveshwara, a pioneer in research on black holes, passed away in Bengaluru after a period of illness. He was 78.
In 1970’s, while at Chicago University, he was among the first to study “black holes” even before they had been so named so.
2. Eugene Cernan, the last astronaut to walk on the moon died on Monday at the age of 82.
He was the commander of the final Apollo lunar landing mission in 1972 became known as the “last man on the moon”.
Important Abbreviations used in this Article
|CEPI||Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations|
|SEZs||Special Economic Zones|
|NASA||National Aeronautics and Space Administration|
|IORA||Indian Ocean Rim Association|
|AIIMS||All India Institute of Medical Sciences|
|M-SIPS||Modified Special Incentive Package Scheme|
|CCEA||Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs|
|IMF||International Monetary Fund|
|SEBI||Securities and Exchange Board of India|
|ICCW||Council for Child Welfare’s|
|CPEC||China-Pakistan Economic Corridor|
|WEF||World Economic Forum’s|
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