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 Union Government has launched ‘Smart Consumer’ mobile App and an ‘Online Consumer Mediation Centre (OCMC)’ to provide speedy redressal of consumer grievances.
A helpline 14404 was also launched for consumer related grievances on National Consumer Day (24th December).
2. The foundation stone of India’s first 2G (Second Generation) Ethanol Bio-refinery was laid at Tarkhanwala village in Bathinda, Punjab.
Central Government Public Sector Undertaking (CPSU) Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) is setting up this project at a cost of 600 crore Rupees.
3. The Union Government launched Lucky Grahak Yojana for Consumers and Digi-Dhan Vyapar Yojana for Merchants to promote digital transaction.
These schemes aim at encouraging people to move towards significantly higher usage of digital transactions through the offer of incentives.
4. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has inaugurated a new campus of National Institute of Securities Markets (NISM) at Patalganga in Mumbai.
NISM is an educational initiative of Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
5. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has laid the foundation stone of Char Dham highway development project (Chardham Mahamarg Vikas Pariyojna) in Dehradun, Uttarakhand.
The Chardham Mahamarg Vikas Pariyojna is an ambitious initiative to improve connectivity to the Char Dham pilgrimage centres in the Himalayas.
6. Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari inaugurated Sagarmala Development Company’s (SDC) office in New Delhi to promote port-led development in the country.
The Sagarmala Development Company has been incorporated under the Companies Act, 2013.
7. The Kerala Government has approached the Union Government for allowing use of antlers of spotted deer and sambar for Ayurveda medicines.
Kerala State Board for Wildlife (SBWL) under chairmanship of CM Pinarayi Vijayan has forwarded proposal to National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) and Ministry of Environment and Forests.
8. The Union Government has approved the re-designation of the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor Project Implementation Trust Fund (DMICPTF) as National Industrial Corridor Development & Implementation Trust (NICDIT).
NICDIT will be the apex body to oversee integrated development of all industrial corridors across the country.
9. Assam Government rolled out ‘Atal-Amrit Abhiyan’, a health insurance scheme to provide coverage against several critical illnesses.
Atal-Amrit Abhiyan aims to make quality health care affordable to every individual member of a family in the state.’
10. The National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) has given its clearance for the Ken-Betwa inter-linking of rivers (ILR) project, paving the way to begin work for linking two rivers.
The clearance of NBWL was required since the project requires diversion of forest land from core area of Panna Tiger Reserve.
11. Union Government launched Swachh Swasth Sarvatra initiative to strengthen health centres in open defecation-free (ODF) blocks.
The objective of this initiative was to strengthen community health centres in 708 ODF blocks across the country to enable them to achieve higher levels of cleanliness and hygiene.
12. The Union Cabinet gave its approval to the proposal of Union Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE) for ratification of International Solar Alliance (ISA) Framework Agreement by India.
The Agreement was opened for signature on the sidelines of 22nd Conference of Parties (CoP) meeting United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) at Marrakesh, Morocco.
13. For the first time in the country, Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) launched 25 buses that run 100 per cent on bio-diesel.
KSRTC expected to save 86.68 lakh per annum by using bio-diesel for 25 buses.
The vehicles retrofitted with Bio-Diesel Kit with which they can run on 100 percent Bio-Diesel for effective control over pollution.
14. The Nedumkayam tribal colony in Malappuram district of Kerala has become the first fully-digital tribal colony in the country.
15. Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has launched an initiative ‘Transform Maharashtra’ at IIT Bombay’s ‘Mood Indigo’ festival.
The initiative will seek participation from over two lakh students from across 500 colleges.
16. The Union Government has proposed setting up Financial Data Management Centre (FDMC) based on the recommendation of a committee set up under the Department of Economic Affairs (DEC).
The Committee was headed by Ajay Tyagi, Additional Secretary in Union Finance Ministry and has submitted its report and a draft bill titled The Financial Data Management Centre Bill, 2016.
17. President Pranab Mukherjee has given assent to Payment of Wages (Amendment) Ordinance, 2016, to enable industries to pay wages by cheque or credit into the bank accounts of workers.
The ordinance amended the Payment of Wages Act, 1936 to encourage cashless transactions.
18. The Government of Telangana to launch ‘Bike Ambulances’ to help patients in remote areas.
The ‘bike ambulances’ will be used in remote areas, mainly inhabited by tribals and also congested localities in Hyderabad and other cities.
19. The Union Ministry for Petroleum & Natural Gas has met the 1.5-crore target for LPG connections that were to be added under the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) in the 2016-17 financial year.
This Target was achieved within a span of less than eight months since the launch of the scheme which is implemented across 35 States/UTs.
20. Haryana state Government has decided to set up a pilot corridor for the ‘Caterpillar Train’.
This train will fly over city’s traffic, in Gurgaon city.
The concept of Caterpillar Train is also known as C-Train.
21. The Bihar Cabinet has declared 50 per cent reservation in all judicial services for aspirants belonging to the Extremely Backward Classes, Other Backward Classes, Scheduled Castes, and Scheduled Tribes.
The reservation will be in both Superior Judicial Services and Subordinate Judicial Services
22. ‘World Bhojpuri Conference’ was held in Varanasi from 29th December 2016 to 1st January 2017, in which participants from over 18 countries are likely to be present.
During the conference, a ‘Bhojpuri Ratna’ award and ‘World Bhojpuri Karmayogi’ award were conferred on over 25 people including Mauritius Prime Minister Anerood Jugnauth, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, Bihar CM Nitish Kumar, Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh, Jharkhand CM Raghubar Das, BJP MP and Bhojpuri actor Manoj Tiwari, Bollywood actors Amitabh Bachchan and Shatrughan Sinha and other personalities.
International – Across the Globe
1. China’s top legislature has passed Environment Tax Law to levy environment tax on polluters, especially on heavy industries.
It will enter force on 1st January 2018.
The law aimed to improve taxpayers’ environmental awareness, force companies to upgrade technology and shift to cleaner production
2. Colombia’s Congress passed a law granting amnesty to Marxist FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) rebels as part of historic peace deal reached between rebels and Government.
The Senate passed the bill 69-0 votes after the House of Representatives approved it by 121-0 votes.
This is another step to formally end to 52 years of Columbian civil war (Latin America’s longest conflict).
3. India has started supplying an additional 80 MW of power to Nepal from 1st January 2017, which will increase the total transmission of electricity to the neighboring nation to 400 MW.
In a swift response, within 20 days the Power Grid Corp installed an additional 220/132kV, 100MVA transformer at Muzaffarpur substation in India.
1. Cricket Australia has named Indian Test skipper Virat Kohli as the captain of the board’s ODI Team of the Year.
Indian pacer Jasprit Bumrah was the only other Indian who made it to the list.
2. Fourteen-year-old double-trap shooter Shapath Bharadwaj became the first junior to qualify for the senior national team after finishing second in the selection trials held in Patiala.
3. Former world number one and 2008 French Open champion Ana Ivanovic has retired from tennis at the age of 29.
The Serb has been out with injury since August and dropped to 63 in the world rankings, having won just 15 matches in 2016.
4. Meghalaya will host the 2022 National Games, which will coincide with the state’s 50 years of statehood.
The state had pledged 5 crore rupees as the bid amount for the game.
The upcoming National Games will be hosted by Goa in November 2017.
Awards & Recognition
1. Eminent Rajasthani litterateur Dr. Satya Narayan was chosen for the 26th Bihari Puraskar 2016 by the K. K. Birla Foundation.
He was chosen for his Hindi book titled Yeh Ek Dunia published in 2010.
His Yeh Ek Dunia is a meticulous depiction of various circumstances of life in contemporary world.
2. China has 108 Feet tall stone statue of Gautam Buddha in Leshan city.
It is the tallest statue in the world which was carved out of a cliff.
This statue was constructed in 713 A.D. in Tang Dynasty as a Chinese Monk named Haitong gave the idea hoping the Buddha would calm the turbulent waters.
3. 6,117 Kuchipudi dancers set a new Guinness World Record by performing together in a single event in Vijayawada district of Andhra Pradesh.
The Guinness World Record adjudicated for the 12-minute “Jayamu Jayamu” item as the ‘Largest Kuchipudi dance’ performance.
4. After Note-ban, Ajmer has topped the 5 best districts to promote cashless transactions.
PM Modi awarded scroll of honor to Ajmer Collector Gaurav Goyal.
Four other districts are Rajkot (Gujarat), Krishna (Andhra), Jamshedpur and Bokaro in Jharkhand.
Mergers & Acquisitions
1. Google India has collaborated with the Union Ministry of Consumer Affairs to launch nationwide Digitally Safe Consumer campaign.
It will raise awareness among consumers about online safety and consumer protection.
The campaign is expected to be rolled out in January 2017.
2. Twitter and ICICI Bank announced a partnership that integrates a slew of digital customer care support features for the bank, benefiting millions of its customers with direct online response to their queries and feedback in real-time.
ICICI Bank is the first bank in India to implement the new features to its Twitter account for customer care.
Appointments & Resignations
1. Lt. Gen. Vinod Vashisht took over the reins of National Cadet Corps (NCC) as its Director General on 23rd December 2016.
He is a graduate from Defence Services Staff College.
2. Actor turned politician Mithun Chakraborty has resigned from Rajya Sabha citing poor health condition.
He has submitted his resignation to Rajya Sabha Chairman.
He was nominated to the upper house by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for the TMC in February 2014.
3. Viral Acharya, a professor at the Stern Business School of New York University, was named deputy governor of RBI.
Acharya is a graduate from the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay and has a Ph.D from Stern School of Business, New York University, will oversee the important monetary policy department and research.
4. Anil Baijal, a former bureaucrat has been appointed as the 21st Lieutenant Governor of Delhi.
He will succeed Najeeb Jung who had resigned before completion of his term and is returning to teaching profession.
5. The Jammu and Kashmir Cabinet has recently appointed the 1986 batch IPS officer Dr. Shesh Pal Vaid, Special DG, Coordination and Law and Order as the new Director General of Police.
He will succeed DGP K Rajendra from 31st December 2016.
6. Romanian President Klaus Iohannis has designated veteran leftist Sorin Grindeanu as the new Romanian head of government.
It was decided a few weeks after the prevailing uncertainty due to Left’s victory in the parliamentary elections on December 11.
7. Incumbent Chief Minister and former Congress rebel Pema Khandu and six other lawmakers were suspended from the People’s Party of Arunachal (PPA) for allegedly breaking party discipline.
PPA is likely to propose the name of another leader, Takam Pario, as Mr. Khandu’s replacement.
8. Government has suspended the deemed recognition, granted by it to the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) until the IOA reverses its decision to appoint Suresh Kalmadi and Abhay Chautala as Life Presidents.
Following the suspension, IOA will cease to enjoy the privileges and prerogatives bestowed on it by the Government as the National Olympic Committee (NOC).
Economics & Banking GK
1. Karnataka Vikas Grameen Bank launched ‘Bank Sakhi’ scheme.
With the help of the scheme, the cashless transactions will be promoted in rural areas and women will be employed in villages.
2. The Union Cabinet approved promulgation of Specified Bank Notes Cessation of Liabilities Ordinance to penalize persons holding banned 500 and 1,000 rupee notes.
It will come into force once it gets Presidential assent as per Article 123 of the Constitution.
It will make possession of a large number of demonetized 1,000 and 500 rupee notes beyond threshold amount a penal offence.
3. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved Road Connectivity Project for Left Wing Extremism (LWE) Affected Areas to improve rural road connectivity in worst LWE affected districts critical from security and communication point of view.
4. Non-banking finance company Au Financiers (India) has received final approval of the Reserve Bank to start operations as small finance bank.
The company has operations in 10 states with 300 branches.
5. Mobile wallet firm Mobikwik has received an in-principle approval from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to set up a Bharat Bill Payments Operating Unit (BBPOU).
6. South Indian Bank has introduced a full-fledged NRI-focused mobile banking application.
This app is named as SIB Mirror+ across major mobile platforms.
7. The Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) has approved six Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) proposals worth Rs 1,200 crore.
It has approved the proposals of, Star Den Media Services, Sanofi Synthelabo India, Idea Cellular Infrastructure Services, Menarini India, Boehringer Ingelheim India and Recipharm Participation.
8. RBI has extended the period of enhanced Prepaid Payment Instruments (PPI) limit of Rs 20,000 as part of efforts to promote digital payments.
The limit has been extended till the completion of review of the PPI guidelines.
9. The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has extended the last date for availing the Direct Tax Dispute Resolution Scheme to 31st January 2017 from the earlier deadline of December 31, 2016.
This extension aims to give companies one more month to accept its offer to settle retro tax disputes with Government.
10. Chinese e-retail giant Alibaba, which has made investments in India’s Snapdeal and Paytm, is setting up its first office in India in Mumbai. The office will be located at the commercial Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) in Mumbai.
Bills – New & Amendments
1. Gujarat Government announced its ‘Biotechnology Policy-2016’ to establish state as a preferred destination for manufacturing of biotechnology products.
The policy has provisions for various incentives for investors who are keen to set up their units in the state.
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
1. The Indian Army has entered an agreement with the IIT-Gandhinagar (IITGN) to set up a research and development (R&D) cell on the campus.
Staffed by the faculty and research students, the R&D cell will attempt to solve the technical challenges faced by the army.
The agreement will also enable IITGN and Indian Army to collaborate in various other areas i.e. critical technology requirements of the army, sharing of professional and technical knowledge, and other activities of mutual interest.
2. Haryana government has signed a memorandum of understanding with Andhra Pradesh to assist in compiling a centralized database of its population to ensure efficient and effective implementation of welfare programmes.
3. CBDT signed two unilateral Advance Pricing Agreements (APAs) with Indian taxpayers pertaining to the Information Technology and automobile sectors.
The international transactions covered in these two agreements include software development services, IT enabled services (ITES), manufacturing and business support services.
4. India and Singapore have signed a Third Protocol to amend DTAA (Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement) for the avoidance of double taxation and prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income.
It was signed in line with India’s treaty policy to prevent double non-taxation, curb revenue loss and check the menace of black money through automatic exchange of information.
Science & Technology
1. The Defence and Research Development Organization (DRDO) successfully flight tested Smart Anti-Airfield Weapon (SAAW) from Indian Air Force (IAF) aircraft at integrated test range in Chandipur, Odisha.
SAAW is an indigenously designed and developed 120-kilogram class smart weapon. It has been developed by DRDO.
2. A team of UK-based researchers has identified Hafnium carbide (HfC) and Tantalum carbide (TaC) as the world’s most heat resistant material.
They can withstand record melting point temperatures up to 3958°C (approx 4000°C).
New Laser-heating techniques were used to find the temperature at which, TaC and HfC melted, both separately and in mixed compositions.
3. US-based scientists have developed a bacteria-powered battery (bio-battery) on a single sheet of paper, which is capable of powering disposable electronics.
The paper-based bacteria-powered battery design is part of a new field of research called papertronics, which is a fusion of paper and electronics.
4. Scientists from Canada have developed the first functional pacemaker cells using human pluripotent stem cells.
The cells can regulate heart-beats with electrical impulses.
paves the way for alternate biological pacemaker therapy.
5. India successfully test-fired its home-grown long range intercontinental surface-to-surface nuclear capable ballistic missile Agni-5.
The state-of-the-art surface-to-surface missile was test fired successfully from the launch complex 4 of the Integrated Test Range from the Abdul Kalam Wheeler Island off Odisha coast.
6. China has successfully tested the latest version of its fifth-generation stealth fighter jet J-31 (now renamed the FC-31 Gyrfalcon).
The newest version of twin-engine FC-31 took to the air for the first time recently.
It is considered as China’s answer to the US F-35, the world’s most technically advanced fighter.
7. Railway launched a new feature called Fog Alert in online portal and mobile app Rail Yatri to help train travelers plan their journeys better in the winter.
The feature allows users to check if a train is delayed due to fog.
8. The Odisha Government recently decided to launch a new malaria control programme, DAMAN, in remote tribal-dominated areas.
The annual expenditure for the programme will be Rs 24 crore from the state budget.
9. A team of international astronomers has discovered Vela super cluster, one of the biggest super galaxy clusters near the Milky Way.
It was spotted by a research team of astronomers from South Africa, Australia and Europe with help slew of telescopes including the Anglo-Australian Telescope (Sydney) and South African Large Telescope (Cape Town).
10. The Union Government has launched Integrated Voice Response System (IVRS) system in a bid to tackle the call drop menace.
The system was launched at multiple locations including Delhi and Mumbai to obtain direct feedback from subscribers on call quality on the issue of frequent call drops.
11. China has successfully launched two high-resolution remote sensing satellites SuperView-1 01 and 02 to get commercial images.
These satellites were launched on-board of Long March 2D rocket from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Centre in Shanxi Province.
They will provide commercial images at 0.5-meter resolution.
11. The Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) has delivered ICGS AYUSH, the 20th Fast Patrol Vessel (FPV) to the Indian Coast Guard.
With this, CSL has completed construction of 20 FPVs for the Indian Coast Guard.
12. Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched UPI based mobile payment application called BHIM (Bharat Interface for Money) at the Digi Dhan Mela held in Talkatora stadium, New Delhi.
The app is rebranded version of UPI (Unified Payment Interface) and USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) for simpler digital payments without cash.
1. St. Stephen’s Day, celebrated on 26th December every year, is a Christian saint’s day to commemorate Saint Stephen, the first Christian martyr or protomartyr.
It is also called as the Feast of Saint Stephen.
1. Dinanath Bhargava, a co-artist in the team that sketched the national emblem ‘Lion Capital of Ashoka’ and decorated the pages of the Constitution’s manuscript, died at the age of 89 in Indore.
Bhargava was chosen by noted painter Nandlal Bose in the group for designing the pages of the Indian Constitution’s manuscript.
2. George Michael, the British pop superstar has died at the age of 53.
The cause of death was heart failure.
3. Veteran Sri Lankan politician Ratnasiri Wickremanayake, who served twice as Prime Minister, passed away after a brief illness.
Wickremanayake served twice as the Island Nation’s Premier, first from 2000 to 2001 and then from 2005 to 2010.
4. Former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister and seasoned BJP leader Sunderlal Patwa died in Bhopal after suffering a heart attack. He was 92.
Sunderlal Patwa was a two-time Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh.
5. Vera Rubin, who has transformed modern physics and astronomy has passed away.
She was famous with her observations showing that galaxies and stars are immersed in the gravitational grip of vast clouds of dark matter.
Important Abbreviations used in this Article
|Online Consumer Mediation Centre|
National Institute of Securities Markets
|Sagarmala Development Company’s|
National Board for Wildlife
|Ministry of New & Renewable Energy|
Financial Data Management Centre
|National Cadet Corps|
Indian Olympic Association
|Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs|
Foreign Investment Promotion Board
Prepaid Payment Instruments
|Central Board of Direct Taxes|
Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement
Smart Anti-Airfield Weapon
Bharat Interface for Money
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