January, 2018

5 MPs Chosen For Parliamentarian Award

The Indian Parliamentary Group announced that five MPs are selected for the Outstanding Parliamentarian Awards.This includes Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad (2015), Trinamool Congress’ Dinesh Trivedi (2016), Manipur’s governor Najma A Heptulla (2013), BJP’s Lok Sabha member Hukumdev Narayan Yadav (2014) and five-time Rajya Sabha member Bhartruhari Mahatab of the Lok Biju Janata Dal (2017).

Shantanu Narayen To Lead USISPF Board

Indian-American Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen has been elected as the Vice Chairman of the US-India Strategic and Partnership Forum.It is a new organisation set up to enhance business relations between India and the US. The new representative body USISPF was set up to promote bilateral trade and work on creating meaningful opportunities that have the power to change the lives of citizens.

Asha Bhosle To Get Yash Chopra Award

Bollywood playback singer Asha Bhosle will be given the ‘Yash Chopra Memorial Award’.She will be the fifth winner of the award. The name of Asha Bhosle is in the Guinness World Records for recording over 11,000 songs in 20 different languages.The award has been instituted by the TSR Foundation of T. Subbarami Reddy in memory of producer-director Yash Chopra, who died in 2012.

Indian, Vietnamese to hold – VINBAX

Armies of India and Vietnam have begun a six-day-long military exercise in Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh.The exercise named ‘VINBAX’ is the first military exercise between the two countries. Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc was in New Delhi to participate in the India-ASEAN Commemorative summit and attend the Republic Day celebrations.

International Bird Festival To Be Held

A three-day international bird festival will be held at the Dudhwa National Park, Lakhimpur Kheri, Uttar Pradesh in February 2018.Nearly 200 leading ornithologists expected to attend. The purpose of the international bird festival is to promote eco-tourism in Dudhwa and to give it a distinct international identity besides highlighting its traditional Tharu arts, culture and heritage.

Rajasthan gave 1% quota to MBC

Rajasthan has issued orders for granting 1% reservation to the Most Backward Classes, within the 50% ceiling mandated by the Supreme Court.The overall reservation in the State stood at 49% before the decision. Along with Gujjars, nomadic communities Banjara, Gadia-Lohar, Raika and Gadariya were included among the Other Backward Classes for quota in the govt jobs & educational institutions.

International Kolkata Book Fair 2018

The 42nd edition of the International Kolkata Book Fair 2018 is being held in Kolkata.The fair, touted to be world’s largest attended book fair, will be open for public from January 31 and will continue till February 11. The focal theme of International Kolkata Book Fair will be France. This will be France’s third appearance as partner country at the International Kolkata Book Fair.

Scheme for Power supply: Haryana

Himachal Pradesh CM Jai Ram Thakur launched integrated power development scheme at Nagrota Bagwan to provide 24×7 power supply in 54 towns of the state.This will include strengthening of power distribution system, setting up new transformers. The scheme envisages to strengthen the basic infrastructure and upgradation of a power supply and substations.

SBI to launch credit card for farmers

The State Bank of India, through its subsidiary SBI Cards & Payments Services Pvt Ltd, will offer credit cards to farmers.The project has been initiated on a pilot basis in Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, and depending on the success of the pilot run, it will be launched nationally. The new credit cards for the farmers will have a credit limit with a credit period of 45 days

Bill to hike judges salary gets approval

President Ram Nath Kovind gave his approval to a Bill that will more than double the salaries of Supreme Court and High Court judges.In the Winter Session of Parliament, the Bill to increase salaries of judges was passed. Now after the President’s approval, the Chief Justice of India will draw a monthly salary of ?2.80 lakh, up from the current ?1 lakh.

“Speaking Truth to Power” book launched

Congress leaders Shashi Tharoor and P Chidambaram released a book titled “Speaking Truth to Power” authored by P Chidambaram in New Delhi on Jan 30, 2018.Former finance minister P Chidambaram urged the citizens of India to speak truth so that the nation can uphold the legacy of its founding fathers.

Melbourne To Host Final Of 2020 WT20

Melbourne Cricket Ground will host the final of both the men’s and women’s World Twenty20 when the tournaments come to Australia in 2020.It will mark the first time the tournaments are held as stand-alone events in the same year in the same country. The women’s final will coincide with International Women’s Day (8th March).

Fossil of dinosaur dug up in Egypt

Scientists have unearthed in a Sahara Desert oasis in Egypt fossils of a long-necked, four-legged, school bus-sized dinosaur that lived roughly 80 million years ago.Researchers said the plant-eating Cretaceous Period dinosaur, named Mansourasaurus shahinae, was nearly 33 feet (10 metres) long. He was a member of a group called titanosaurs that included Earth’s largest-ever land animals.

EPFO goes paperless

Taking another step towards going paperless, retirement fund body EPFO said it has launched facilities for employers to pay dues and update ownership details online.Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has provided the facility of online submission of Form 5A (Return of Ownership), it said in a statement. EPFO added it has discontinued the physical submission of the form.

Govt signs $250m Loan Agreement With ADB

31 : Asian Development Bank and India has signed a 250 million dollar loan to finance the construction of over 6200 km all-weather rural roads in 5 states.These states are Assam, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and West Bengal under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana. The program is aimed at improving rural connectivity, facilitating safer and more efficient access to livelihood.

Sharath Kamal won TT Championship

Sharath Kamal beat top-seeded Anthony Amalraj to win the men singles title in the 79th edition of the 11Even Sports Senior Nationals in Ranchi, Jharkhand.He won the championship for the eighth time, equalling the feat of Kamlesh Mehta. Suthirta Mukherjee from West Bengal emerged the new women champion, beating Hyderabad Nationals winner Manika Batra.

1st Khelo India School Games launched

Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the first Khelo India School Games at Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium in New Delhi.The Khelo India programme has been introduced to revive the sports culture in India at the grass-root level. Talented Under-17 players identified in priority sports disciplines at various levels. The Games are being held from 31st January to 8th February 2018.

India’s Crude Steel Prod. Rises 6.2%

India has overtaken the US to become the world’s third-largest steel producer and the country is now looking to bag the second spot from Japan.Country’s crude steel production grew by 6.2% to 101.4 million tonnes, MT, in 2017 compared to 95.5 MT in 2016, according to the report by World Steel Association. China remained the world leader by producing 831.7 MT in 2017.

India Ranks 6th In Wealthiest Countries

India has been ranked sixth in the list of wealthiest countries with the total wealth of 8,230 billion US dollars.The list was topped by the United States of America. It is according to New World Wealth report.India was the best-performing wealth market globally in 2017 as it registered a 25% growth.

HPC facility launched in Noida

Union Minister for Earth Science, Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Dr. Harsh Vardhan dedicated the High-Performance Computer (HPC) System named ‘Mihir’.Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that with this facility, India’s capacity in weather forecasting will improve. The Minister said that the HPC facility will be India’s largest HPC facility in terms of peak capacity and performance.

2018 India Open, starts

The 2018 India Open, is a badminton tournament which will take place at Siri Fort Indoor Stadium in Delhi from 30 January to 4 February 2018.The event will also feature 2014 champion Kidambi Srikanth beginning his new season after missing last week’s Indonesia Masters. Saina Nehwal begged silver medal at Indonesia Masters recently. Saina clinched the India Open Super Series in 2015.

Ind-Origin in US Inventors Hall Of Fame

2 Indian-American innovation pioneers – Arogyaswami Paulraj for his MIMO wireless technology and Sumita Mitra for her nanocomposite dental materials, have been inducted into National Inventors Hall of Fame.Arogyaswami and Sumita along with 13 other innovation pioneers would be formally felicitated. Paulraj’s wireless technology has revolutionised broadband wireless Internet access.

550m living with unsafe PM10 levels

About 550 million people, are living in cities that recorded annual particulate matter levels above the national standards in 2016, a report by Greenpeace India said.The report, titled ‘Airpocalypse-II’, said that 180 million people were living in areas where the PM10 levels were more than twice the annual limit of 60 µg/m³. Delhi is the most polluted with annual PM10 level of 290 µg/m³.

50% increase in indirect taxpayers

There has been a 50% increase in the number of indirect taxpayers.There has also been a large increase in voluntary registrations, especially by small enterprises that buy from large enterprises wanting to avail themselves of input tax credit. There were 9.8 million unique GST registrants, an increase by 3.4 million compared to the previous tax regime is seen.

Nation pays tribute on Martyr’s Day

The nation today remembers Mahatma Gandhi, as it observes the 70th death anniversary of the father of the nation.Gandhi was shot dead 69 years ago on January 30, 1948, by Nathuram Godse. This day is also observed as ‘Martyrs Day’ by the nation.

Open defecation falls to below 50%

The number of people defecating in the open in rural India had reduced to less than half of what it was in 2014, according to the Economic Survey.So far, 296 districts and 3,07,349 villages have been declared as Open Defecation Free. 8 States and 2 UTs, i.e., Sikkim, HP, Kerala, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh, Arunachal, Gujarat, Daman & Diu and Chandigarh have been declared as ODF.

Sushma Swaraj to visit Nepal

In a bid to revive ties with Nepal, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will visit Kathmandu from February 1 to 2.The visit comes weeks after Nepal elected a Leftist coalition, which won the first historic poll under the new Constitution of the country. The visit by Ms. Swaraj will be the first big diplomatic engagement with the newly elected Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli.

Average inflation dips to 6 year low

The Economic Survey said the average retail inflation has declined to a six-year low of 3.3% in 2017-18.“Controlling inflation has been a priority area for the central government,” the survey said. CPI based headline inflation, factored in by RBI while arriving at its bi-monthly monetary policy, averaged 3.3% during the period which “is the lowest” in the last six financial years.

Dharmasena Pathiraja died

Renowned Sri Lankan filmmaker Dharmasena Pathiraja, passed away.Hailing from Kandy in Sri Lanka’s Central Province, the filmmaker is credited with making a critical intervention in Sinhala cinema, with themes that served as social commentaries on the prevailing socio-economic and political realities. He also taught film studies in various Sri Lankan universities.

Jazz musician Coco Schumann dead

German Jewish guitarist Coco Schumann, died at the age of 93.He was also a member of “Ghetto Swingers band”, and was forced to perform concerts at the camp. He had a seven-decade-long career in swing and jazz music and survived Nazi concentration camps.

Prakash won Lifetime Achievement Award

Vice President Venkaiah Naidu conferred Badminton Association of India Lifetime Achievement Award to 1983 World Championship medallist Prakash Padukone.Naidu termed Padukone a “grand legend of a great game”, who inspired the nation through his “sheer passion, grit and determination”. The Mysuru-born had won gold medals at the 1978 Commonwealth Games & the All England Championships in 1980.

Sunny Deol’s ‘tarikh par tarikh’ in ES

The Economic Survey 2017-18 has quoted Sunny Deol’s dialogue ‘tarikh par tarikh’ to highlight frequent delays in the judicial process.The survey, tabled in Parliament called for coordinated action between government and the judiciary to address the delays and boost economic activity. It also featured a line from a Bollywood song, “Mere desh ki dharti sona ugle, ugle heerey moti.

First ever ‘Khadi Haat’ in Delhi

Marking the 69th Republic Day celebrations, Khadi and Village Industries Commission and New Delhi Municipal Council have launched the first ever ‘Khadi Haat’ in the country.The Khadi Haat was inaugurated on January 25 by Minister of State Giriraj Singh in Connaught Place. In this Khadi Haat, entrepreneurs under PMEGP will get an opportunity to display and sell their exquisite products.

“Biggest protest in history”: London

London will hold the “biggest protest in British history” against US President Donald Trump’s visit to the country, Labour MP David Lammy has claimed.This comes after Trump said he will make his first state visit to Britain in October this year. Several MPs have requested PM Theresa May to withdraw the invitation for a state visit extended to Trump.

5 states account for 70% of exports

The Economic Survey 2017-18 has revealed that five states– Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, and Telangana, accounted for 70% of India’s exports for the first time.The survey found that states’ export performance and their standard of living were strongly interrelated. It also noted that India’s internal trade in goods and services accounted for an estimated 60% of GDP.

Artiste passes away during performance

Ottanthullal artiste Kalamandalam Geethanandan on Sunday passed away during a performance at a temple in Kerala’s Irinjalakuda.A video of his last thullal performance, a combination of dance and recital, showing him collapse with folded hands went viral. The 58-year-old artiste, who has performed on over 5,000 stages, was rushed to the hospital but was declared dead on arrival.

Economic Survey 2017-18 printed in pink

The Economic Survey 2017-18 tabled in Parliament is printed in pink to highlight gender issues amid economic development.The survey estimated that due to “meta-preference” for sons, India could have about 21 million “unwanted girls,” or girls whose parents wanted to have sons instead. It pointed out that most parents continued to have children until they got sons.

Idukki dam to screen laser show

30 : Officials are planning to screen a laser show depicting Kerala’s history on the Idukki dam, which is Asia’s oldest arch dam.“The laser show is planned to be screened on the dam wall surface, which is 500 feet high and 600 feet wide,” an official said. The Idukki Dam is a double curvature arch dam constructed across the Periyar River between two granite hills Kuravan and Kuravathi in Kerala.

‘Beetle Bailey’ cartoonist Walker died

Comic strip artist Mort Walker who tickled millions of newspaper readers with the antics of the lazy private “Beetle Bailey,” died.Walker began publishing cartoons at age 11. But he found his greatest success drawing slacker Beetle, his hot-tempered sergeant and the rest of the gang at fictional Camp Swampy for nearly 70 years.

Roger Federer won Australian Open

World No. 2 Roger Federer defeated No. 6 Marin Cilic 6-2, 6-7(5), 6-3, 3-6, 6-1 to clinch his sixth Australian Open title.This is Federer’s 20th Grand Slam title. Roger Federer is from Switzerland and Marin Cilic from Croatia.

Celebrities with white roses at Grammys

Celebrities including Rihanna, Miley Cyrus, Lady Gaga, Pink and Zayn Malik were seen with white roses at Grammys 2018.They did it to show support for the Time’s Up movement, which aims to fight harassment and gender inequality. While some celebrities like Miley and Rihanna were seen holding the roses, others like Zayn, Pink and Anna Kendrick had pinned it to their outfits.

Australian Open 2018, winners

Women’s Singles – Caroline Wozniacki won by defeating Simona Halep.Men’s Doubles – Oliver Marach and Mate Pavic won by defeating Robert Farah and J. Cabal. Women’s Doubles – Kristina Mladenovic and Tímea Babos won by defeating Elena Vesnina and Ekaterina Makarova. Mixed Doubles – Gabriela Dabrowski and Mate Pavic won by defeating Timea Babos and Rohan Bopanna.

Tai Tzu Ying won Indonesian Masters

The world no.1 Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan has defeated Saina Nehwal in the finals of the Indonesia Masters in Jakarta.Tai Tzu has now defeated the former world No.1 nine times in their last 10 meetings. Saina had enjoyed early success against the Taiwanese till 2011 but the Nehwal has beaten her only once at the 2013 Swiss Open ever since.

India, Vietnam Released Comm. Stamps

India and Vietnam released first ever set of commemorative postage stamps to mark the long term friendly bilateral relationships between the two countries.These stamps on the theme of ancient architecture are a symbol of strong friendship between the two countries. The two set of stamps released carry picture of Sanchi Stupa and Thien Mu Pagoda.

GDP growth pegged at 7-7.75%

The Economic Survey 2017-18, tabled by the Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley projected a GDP growth of 7 to 7.5% in the financial year 2018-19.“A series of major reforms undertaken over the past year will allow real GDP growth to reach 6.75 percent this fiscal and will rise to 7.0 to 7.5 percent in 2018-19,” said the Economic Survey 2017-18.

‘Super blood blue moon’ to be visible

A cosmic event not seen in 36 years, a rare “super blood blue moon” may be glimpsed on January 31. The event is causing a buzz because it combines three unusual lunar events — an extra big super moon, a blue moon and a total lunar eclipse. “It’s an astronomical trifecta,” said Kelly Beatty, a senior editor at Sky and Telescope magazine.

Satellite image shows build-up in Doklam

India and China are pursuing a “wide-ranging strategic build-up” in airbases close to the Doklam Plateau.It is according to the latest analysis of satellite imagery acquired by Stratfor. Doklam is an area spread over less than a 100 sq km comprising a plateau and a valley at the trijunction between India, Bhutan and China, surrounded by the Chumbi Valley.

Punjab launches benefits under MGSVY

Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh launched the release of benefits under ‘Mahatma Gandhi Sarbat Vikas Yojana’.It is aimed at the inclusive growth of the distressed sections of the society. He appealed to the state’s debt-ridden farmers not to commit suicide.

‘Maitreyi Yatra’ concludes

The closing ceremony of the Jammu and Kashmir student exchange programme, titled ‘Maitreyi yatra’, was held at National Bal Bhawan.The programme was organised by the Ministry of Human Resource development. It will provide a good opportunity to the youth of Jammu and Kashmir to be acquainted with culture, language and development story of different parts of the country.

Vijay takes charge as Foreign Secretary

Vijay Keshav Gokhale assumed charge as the new foreign secretary for a two-year term.He succeeded former foreign secretary S Jaishankar who completed his term of three-years, including one extended year, this month. Gokhale, who joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1981, played a major role in resolving the 73-day-long Doklam standoff between India and China last year.

Sensors to monitor earthquake: Andamans

The Indian Tsunami Early Warning System is in the process of setting up an elaborate system of sensors on the Andaman & Nicobar Islands.Strong Motion Sensors with GPS have been installed at 28 locations on the islands.The ITEWS comprises a real-time network of seismic stations, tsunami buoys and tide gauges to detect tsunamigenic earthquakes and to monitor tsunamis.

Cartoon Network ship to be launched

Cartoon Network has announced the launch of a new colourful cruise ship liner named Cartoon Network Wave, which will sail from Singapore in late 2018.The newly announced ship will draw inspiration from shows like The Powerpuff Girls and Ben 10. The 2,000-capacity ship will feature 800 cabins and suites, a Johnny Bravo-themed burger bar and a rope adventure park.

Grammy Awards winners

Bruno Mars, Kendrick Lamar steal the show in early Grammys Mars won all of the awards for which he was nominated.Here is a list of winners in key categories: Album of the Year: Bruno Mars, 24K Magic. Record of the Year: Bruno Mars, 24K Magic. Song of the Year (for songwriting): Bruno Mars. The 60th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony was held on January 28, 2018.

Ingvar Kamprad died

Ingvar Kamprad, the Founder of Swedish furniture giant Ikea, died at the age of 91 at his home. Kamprad was the world’s eighth-richest person with a net worth of $58.7 billion. He had founded Ikea at the age of 17, building it into the world’s largest furniture retailer.

Amazon invests funds into its Indian arm

E-commerce major Amazon has invested about ?1,950 crore into its Indian subsidiary Amazon Seller Services, according to filings.The investment comes two months after the Indian unit received over ?2,900 crore, its single largest infusion into the country’s operations till date. Amazon Seller Services also nearly doubled its authorised share capital to ?31,000 crore, as per filings.

Paytm valuation hits $10 bn

Indian digital payment startup Paytm has crossed $10 billion valuation for the first time after 200 current and former employees sold their shares worth $47.2 million.Paytm’s last valuation stood at $7 billion when it raised $1.4 billion from SoftBank last year. The new valuation makes Paytm second-most valuable internet startup in India after Flipkart (about $12 billion).

CBSE to take feedback from students

CBSE has issued a circular to schools, saying the board will accept feedback from schools and students about the Class 10 and 12 examinations.The board has developed an observation schedule, allowing the schools and students to send their comments and feedback within 24 hours examination. Board has also urged teachers, allotted for answer script checking, to carry out the assessment process

Pak. became world number 1 T20I side

Pakistan became the top-ranked T20I side in international cricket after beating New Zealand in the third and final T20I to claim the three-match series 2-1.This was Pakistan’s sixth T20I series win on the trot. Notably, New Zealand had whitewashed Pakistan in the five-match ODI series before the T20I series.

Kohli surpasses Lara

29 : Following his knocks of 54 and 41 in the last South Africa Test, India captain Virat Kohli has moved past legend Brian Lara in the all-time Test rating points list.With 912 points, current world number two Test batsman Kohli moved from 31st position to 26th position, leapfrogging Lara (911), Kevin Pietersen (909), Hashim Amla (907) and Michael Clarke (900).

Seychelles allows India military infra

India & Seychelles have signed a revised agreement that will allow India to build military infrastructure on Assumption Island.The agreement was signed by Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar & Seychelles President Danny Faure.It will provide a framework for assistance to Seychelles by Govt of India to enhance military capabilities in control, maritime surveillance & protection of Seychelles EEZ.

India, Cambodia ink 4 pacts

India & Cambodia have signed 4 agreements to enhance cooperation on security, connectivity and development assistance.The two countries signed pacts for a MoU on prevention of human trafficking & also agreed to enhance bilateral defence ties. Cambodia, which is very close to China, endorsed the importance of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) in a joint statement with India.

Oxford dictionary’s Hindi word of 2017

Oxford Dictionaries has chosen ‘Aadhaar’ as the Hindi word of 2017. It also becomes the first Oxford Dictionaries Hindi Word of the Year.Widespread discussions & debates around ‘Aadhaar’ was the reason it was selected as the word of the year. The Hindi Word of the Year was chosen by the Oxford Dictionaries team in India with the help of an advisory panel of language experts.

Govt to set up apex cybercrime center

To deal with cyber crimes such as financial frauds, circulation of communal & pornographic contents, the Union Home Ministry is planning to set up an apex coordination center.The apex centre – Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C) would be set up in Delhi. It would coordinate with state governments & UTs & closely monitor cyberspace & social media with due emphasis on vernacular content.

Modi to address World Government Summit

PM Modi will address the 6th World Government Summit, at which India is ‘Guest of Honour’, at Dubai.This will be PM Modi’s second visit to United Arab Emirate. World Govt Summit is an annual event held in Dubai that brings together leaders in govt for a global dialogue about governmental process & policies with a focus on issues of futurism, technology & innovation, as well as other topics.

G S Kalkat passes away

Noted agricultural scientist Gurcharan Singh Kalkat, who was known for his role in bringing Green Revolution to Punjab, passed away after a brief illness.Kalkat was awarded Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan for his work. He has also worked as a senior agriculturist with the World Bank & had supervised the implementation of World Bank assisted programmes in India, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Indonesia.

Caroline Wozniacki wins Australian Open

Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki defeated Romanian Simona Halep to win her first Grand Slam title at the Australian Open.Twice a runner-up at the US Open, Wozniacki becomes the first Dane to win a Grand Slam singles title. With the win, Wozniacki will reclaim the WTA World No. 1 ranking exactly six years since she last held it.

India retain ICC Test Championship mace

India’s win over South Africa in the 3rd & final Test helped it retain the ICC Test Championship mace.Kohli will be presented with the mace, which is a symbol of excellence & a recognition of a side’s outstanding performance in the purest format of the game. Kohli had become the 10th captain since 2002 to get his hands on the mace when he had received it from Sunil Gavaskar in 2016.

Govt launches polio programme for 2018

President Ram Nath Kovind launched the Pulse Polio programme for 2018 by administering polio drops to children below five years at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.The president administered the drops on the eve of National Immunisation Day, which is observed on 28th January. Over 17 cr children, below 5 years, across the country, will be given polio drops as part of the Government of India’s drive.

Govt to set up social media hubs

Information & Broadcasting Ministry has planned to set up a Social Media Communication Hub that would help it keep a tab on trending news in districts.Under the project, media persons would be employed in each district to be the eyes & ears of govt & provide real-time updates from the ground. They would also take people’s feedback on govt’s policies & follow the news trending in their areas

China To Establish International Courts

China has decided to set up three international courts to deal with disputes related to its multi-billion dollar Belt and Road Initiative.The courts will weigh litigation, arbitration and mediation; providing legal support and solving initiative disputes. The Chinese Supreme People’s Court will set up international courts in Beijing, Xi’an, and Shenzhen.

Dilli Meri Dilli: Before and After 1998

Book titled “Dilli Meri Dilli: Before and After 1998”, written by Sheila Dikshit has been released.The pictorial book traces the evolution of Delhi over the centuries & puts in perspective its impressive transformation since the beginning of the new millennium. Sheila Dikshit is the former & longest serving Chief Minister of Delhi, serving for a period of 15 yrs from 1998 to 2013.

Business leaders to attend Assam summit

Business leaders like Ratan Tata, Dilip Sanghvi will be part of over 4,800 delegates from across the world in 1st ever global investors summit in Assam.Advantage Assam will be the largest ever investment promotion & facilitation initiative by the state govt. It will showcase opportunities offered by the state in terms of export-oriented manufacturing & services to ASEAN & other countries.

International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Every year January 27 is observed as the International Holocaust Remembrance Day.This day is observed to serve as a date for official commemoration of the victims of the Nazi regime and to promote Holocaust education throughout the world.The theme of this year’s International Holocaust Remembrance Day is “Holocaust Remembrance and Education: Our Shared Responsibility”

Miloš Zeman wins another term

Czech President Miloš Zeman has won a second 5 year term as head of state after beating his opponent Jirí Drahoš with a thin margin.Zeman, in 2013, became the first president of the country, which was formed only 2 decades ago, to be elected by the voters & not politicians. Overall, he is the third president of the country, which was formed following the division of Czechoslovakia in 1993.

Acid attack victims to get quota

People with autism, mental illnesses, intellectual disability & victims of acid attacks will now get quota in central govt jobs.In case of direct recruitment, 4% of total number of vacancies in groups A, B & C shall be reserved for people with benchmark disabilities. This comes after the passage of Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 & notification of relevant rules in this regard

PM Modi to visit Palestine, UAE and Oman

PM Modi will be on a state visit to Palestine, UAE and Oman from February 9-12.This will be the first-ever visit by an Indian prime minister to Palestine. Modi would be addressing the 6th World Government Summit being held in Dubai. Modi’s visit to Palestine assumes huge significance in the sense that India was one of the first countries to recognise the state of Palestine in 1988.

China’s new military training manual

28 : China’s People’s Liberation Army, the world’s largest army, has published an officially approved outline for military training.It focuses on the PLA’s combat capability, highlighting military training under combat conditions & joint training. The new training outline makes it a mission of the PLA that by 2035, the modernization of the China’s national defence should be completed.

Saudi prince Alwaleed released

The Saudi prince Alwaleed bin Talal has been released after nearly three months in detention as a part of an anti-corruption sweep.Prince Al-Waleed was the most high-profile detainee among 350 suspects rounded up since November 4th, including business tycoons and ministers. The Prince, whose net worth has been estimated by Forbes magazine at 17 billion US dollars.

First Nepal player to get IPL contract

Sandeep Lamichhane has become the first cricketer from Nepal to land an IPL contract.He was picked by Delhi Daredevils in the ongoing players auction at his base price of Rs 20 lakh. The leg-spinner rose to prominence with a successful outing at the 2016 U-19 World Cup where he guided Nepal to a creditable eighth place.

India’s first floating market

India’s first floating market is now open in Kolkata’s Patuli area in West Bengal.Set up by Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority, the market functions solely on boats at the lake in Patuli, where shopkeepers sell fruits, vegetables, fish among other produce. The floating market is 500 meters long and 60 meters wide, around Rs 10 crore has been spent to develop the water body.

Small Fin & Payments Banks to offer APY

According to the Central govt “Payments Banks & Small Finance Banks” will offer social security scheme Atal Pension Yojana (APY) to their subscribers.The move is aimed at expanding the outreach of Atal Pension Yojana. Payment and Small finance banks are a new model of banking conceptualised by the RBI. As on Jan 23, 2018, there are more than 84 lakh subscribers registered under APY scheme.

Delhi lifts Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy

Delhi lifted its maiden Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy after defeating Rajasthan in the finals by 41 runs.Chasing 154 for a win, Rajasthan were bundled out for 112 in a brilliant display by the Delhi bowlers. The Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy is a Twenty20 cricket domestic championship in India. It is named after a famous Indian cricketer, Syed Mushtaq Ali.

Usha Ananthasubramanian, MD and CEO

27 : Allahabad Bank, has been elected the first woman chairman of Indian Banks’ Association.IBA Chairman’s position fell vacant following superannuation of Jatinder Bir Singh, who was Chairman & MD of Punjab & Sind Bank. IBA is the banking sector’s industry body which aims to promote & develop sound banking principles & practices in the country.

Vodafone, Flipkart Tie Up

Vodafone India has partnered with e-commerce marketplace Flipkart to provide a range of entry-level smartphones at an effective price of Rs999.Vodafone has rolled out cash-back offers on select range of entry-level 4G smartphone models available under Flipkart’s #MyFirst4GSmartphone campaign. For the offer, customers have to a recharge least Rs150 per month for 36 months.

NSIC Inks Pact With Malaysia

National Small Industries Corporation signed an MoU with SME Corporation Malaysia for exchange of information and cooperation.MoU was signed in areas such as policies to aid development of small and medium businesses in the two countries.Besides, three other agreements were also signed between Indian and Malaysian entities. Bilateral trade was registered at $12.02 billion in 2015.

Prodigee Finance granted NBFC-ND license

Prodigee Finance received their NBFC license from RBI, making it possible for the firm to provide SME loans as part of their services.Enterslice is a legal technology company that specialises in helping entrepreneurs in starting successful businesses. The goal at Prodigee is to provide SMEs loans that they likely otherwise would not have had available.

Min. of Road Transport signs MoU

An MoU was signed between NHIDCL and M/S IL&FS Transportation Networks Ltd.It is for construction of the 14.150 m long, 2-lane bi-directional Zojila Tunnel in Jammu & Kashmir. This would be India’s longest road tunnel and the longest bi-directional tunnel in Asia. The construction of this tunnel will provide all-weather connectivity between Srinagar, Kargil and Leh.

‘one district, one product’ scheme in UP

The Uttar Pradesh Cabinet has approved ‘one district, one product’ scheme to promote products indigenous to every district.Implementation of the One District, One Product will boost economic development of the state, and also help in generation of five lakh new jobs annually. Under this, one product indigenous to every district would be showcased at the three-day UP Diwas event.

Nation Celebrates 69th Republic Day

The Country celebrates its 69th Republic Day on 26th January.The family members of Corporal Jyoti Prakash Nirala (Posthumous) of the Indian Air Force (IAF), who died fighting militants in Kashmir valley, received India’s highest peacetime gallantry award, Ashok Chakra. This is the third Ashok Chakra for the IAF and its first for ground combat.

Padma Awards 2018 – 2

The 2017 World Weightlifting Champion Saikhom Mirabai Chanu and former Asian Games gold medallist tennis player Somdev Devvarman have been conferred with the Padma Shri.Ilayaraja, Ghulam Mustafa Khan (Art) and Parameswaran Parameswaran (Literature & Education) were awarded with Padma Vibhushan. Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Pankaj Advani are among others awarded with Padma Bhushan.

Padma Awards 2018 – 1

The President has approved the awards for 85 individuals, which includes 3 Padma Vibhushan, 9 Padma Bhushan and 73 Padma Shri.Fourteen of the awardees are women and 3 persons have been awarded posthumously. The awards are announced on the eve of the Republic Day every year.

Chief Guests of 69th Republic Day

Heads of ten ASEAN countries are chief guests.Hassanal Bolkiah-Sultan of Brunei, Hun Sen- PM of Cambodia, Rodrigo- Pres. of Philippines, Joko Widodo- Pres. of Indonesia, Najib Razak- PM of Malaysia, Nguyen Xuan- PM of Vietnam, Halima Yacob- Pres. of Singapore, Htin Kyaw- Pres. of Myanmar, Suu Kyi- state counsellor of Myanmar, Prayuth Chan- PM of Thailand & Thongloun Sisoulith- PM of Laos.

Japan commits loan to Bengaluru

Japan has committed JICA Official Development Assistance loan for an amount of 45 billion yen (about Rs 2,587 crore) for Bengaluru Water Supply and Sewerage Project (Phase 3).Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) provides various forms of aid for promoting economic and social development in developing countries. Shinzo Abe is Prime Minister of Japan, with its capital as Tokyo.

ONGC borrows Rs 4K crore from ICICI Bank

State-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) has borrowed Rs 4,000 crore from ICICI Bank.ONGC has already borrowed over Rs 18,000 crore from three other banks to part finance its Rs 36,915 crore acquisition of HPCL. ICICI Bank has extended one-year loan to ONGC to fund the acquisition of government’s 51.11 percent stake in Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL).

MIS portal for Anganwadi Training Prog.

Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development, Shri Rakesh Srivastava launched the Management Information System (MIS) portal for Anganwadi Services Training Programme in New Delhi.Ministry of Women and Child Development with NIC, has developed MIS. The first phase of the portal will enable NGOs to submit proposal to the respective States/UTs. The URL is http://icds-trg.nic.in.

Rajesh will be next Ambassador to Niger

Shri Rajesh Agarwal, presently Counsellor, High Commission of India, Port Moresby has been appointed as the next Ambassador of India to the Republic of Niger.He is expected to take up his assignment shortly. Niger is a landlocked country in Western Africa named after the Niger River. The capital city is Niamey. President – Mahamadou Issoufou, Prime Minister – Brigi Rafini.

Conf. on ‘Inclusion of PWD in Election’

Election Commission of India hosted a one-day International Conference on the subject ‘Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities in the Election Process’ in New Delhi.Delegates at the Conference included Chairpersons of five EMBs viz. Australia, Bhutan, Guinea, Moldova & Zambia. ECI is committed to the objective that the Persons with Disabilities have the right to full electoral participation.

India, Vietnam sign two agreements

India and Vietnam signed a MoU to enhance cooperation in the field of information and broadcasting.It is based on principles of equality and reciprocity pursuant to their national laws and regulations. Another implementation arrangement between ISRO and National Remote Sensing Department of Vietnam was also concluded on the occasion.

Bharat-ASEAN Maitri Park In Delhi

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj inaugurated the Bharat-ASEAN Maitri Park in the national capital.ASEAN Secretary General Le Luong Minh also attended the event, held at the Tughlaq Crescent, in the heart of Lutyens’ Delhi. The two-day summit is expected to give boost to India-ASEAN cooperation in key areas of counter-terrorism, security and connectivity.

Second IIIT in Karnataka

The Centre today sanctioned the setting up of a second Indian Institute of Information Technology (IIIT) in Karnataka at Raichur.It will be the second such institute in Karnataka, after the one in Dharwad. The state has been asked to provide alternative infrastructure to commence the 2018-19 academic year till it identifies the land for the construction of the proposed IIIT.