Updates From The Nation
Sheila Dikshit the New AICC Delhi President
Sheila Dikshit is the longest serving Chief Minister of Delhi. She served from 1998 to 2013 for 15 years. She has also been responsible for the party's three consecutive electoral victories in Delhi. She will officially take charge as the party's Delhi unit President on January 16, 2019.
National Youth Parliament Festival 2019
The Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports, Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore launched the National Youth Parliament Festival 2019. This was done at a function in New Delhi on January 12, 2019. The festival will go on till February 24, 2019. The theme of the festival is 'Be the Voice of New India and Find solutions and contribute to policy'.
Law Commission in Jammu and Kashmir
The J&K administration has set up a law commission for a term of three years. The founding chairperson of the commission is Justice (Retd) M.K. Hanjura. The commission will identity redundant and obsolete laws that can be repealed and suggest measures for quick redress of public grievances.
Bird Watching Event in Tamil Nadu
Tamil Nadu will host the 12th edition of the Chennai Bird Race in Chennai on January 26, 2019. In the race, birdwatchers are expected to participate in teams of four to record as many species as possible in various birding spots in the city.
Metro Rail Projects Approved by Karnataka State Cabinet
The Karnataka State Cabinet has approved three metro rail projects and a feasibility report by Rail India Technical and Economic Service (RITES) on the suburban railway project. The four suburban railway corridors were approved at an estimated cost of Rs. 23,093 crore.
Sudhir Bhargava is the new Chief of CIC
Sudhir Bhargava is the former Secretary to the Social Justice Ministry. He has been an Information Commissioner and is the ninth chief of the Chief Information Commission.
Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment) Bill 2018 passed in the Lower House
The Lok Sabha has passed the bill for amendment to allow individuals to offer voluntarily biometric ID as a means of identity verification. It also gives the option to a minor to opt out of the 12-digit identity scheme on reaching the age of 18.
Karnataka MP Demands Review of IBPS Recruitment
Karnataka MP Pratap Simha has requested Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to review the existing recruitment policy of the Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS). The MP has urged the finance minister to reinstate the provision of ‘Local language’ which was dropped in 2015. According to him, officers from other states who are not well-versed with Kannada are facing trouble in daily business.
Senior Congress Leader Ajay Maken Resigns
Citing health-related issues as the reason for his resignation, Ajay Maken stepped down as the All India Congress Committee (AICC) party’s Delhi unit president. He is a Senior Congress leader and the former Union Minister. Former Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and former Delhi Minister Yoganand Shastri are being considered as his replacement.
Veer Savarkar International Airport Declared an Authorised Immigration Check Post
The Veer Savarkar International Airport in Port Blair is now an authorized Immigration Check post. The Superintendent of Police (CID), Andaman and Nicobar Police will be the ‘Civil Authority’ for the purpose of the immigration check post. The airport will work as an entry into/exit point from India with valid travel documents for all classes of passengers.
Business & Finance Updates
GST Exemption Limit Increased
The finance minister Arun Jaitley has increased the annual turnover for availing composition scheme from Rs 1 crore to Rs 1.5 crore. This will provide relief to small businesses under Goods and Services (GST) regime and will be effective from April 1, 2019.
World Economic Forum's Report on the Indian Consumer Market
According to a report by the World Economic Forum (WEF), consumer spending in India will grow from USD 1.5 trillion USD at present to USD six trillion by 2030. This will make India the world's third largest consumer market by 2030. India is currently the world's sixth largest economy with an annual GDP growth rate of 7.5 percent.
Swap Deal of USD 400 million Between Sri Lanka and RBI
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has agreed to provide $400 million to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL). This deal is under the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) swap facility.
Iranian Bank Pasargad Branch in Mumbai
India has allowed Iran's Pasargad Bank to open a branch in Mumbai. Subsequently, India's state-owned UCO Bank will soon be opening a branch in Iran.
Boeing, World's Largest Plane Maker
US-based Boeing has emerged as the world's largest plane maker for the seventh year in a row. The plane giant has retained its position by delivering a record 806 aircrafts in 2018. European Airbus delivered 800 aircrafts in 2018 and emerged as the second largest.
Bancassurance Pact Between Syndicate Bank and SBI Life Insurance
Syndicate Bank and SBI Life Insurance have signed a bancassurance pact. This will offer a comprehensive financial planning solution to customers. It was signed between the Syndicate Bank MD & CEO, Mrutyunjay Mahapatra and MD and CEO of SBI Life, Sanjeev Nautiyal.
Vivek Bhatia is the New MD & CEO of Thyssenkrupp Industries India
The German industrial giant Thyssenkrupp has appointed Vivek Bhatia as the Managing Director (MD) & Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Thyssenkrupp Industries India. Bhatia was earlier the CEO - Asia Pacific at Thyssenkrupp AG.
Amrish Rau Joins Nasper as Head of Financial Technology
Amrish Rau, the CEO of PayU India has joined the parent company Nasper. He is now the head of financial technology partnerships and investments for Naspers’ fin tech business. Nasper is the South African parent company of PayU.
RBI asked to Legalise New Indian Currency in Nepal
The Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) has written a letter to RBI to make Indian currency of Rs.200, Rs.500 and Rs.2,000 legal in Nepal. The higher denomination Indian notes had to be banned in Nepal since RBI did not allow their circulation. The RBI has only allowed the circulation of Indian currency notes of Rs.100 and less in Nepal.
Pankaj Sharma Appointed the New COO of RBL Bank
The RBL Bank has appointed Pankaj Sharma as its chief operations officer (COO). Sharma was heading retail operations of Axis Bank prior to this.
Update From The Sports World
Australian Open Top Seeds Named
Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic and Romanian tennis player Simona Halep have been named top seeds on January 10, 2019 for the Australian Open. The 107th edition of the Australian Open will take place at Melbourne Park from January 14 to 27, 2019.
Birendra Prasad Baishya, Chef de Mission for 2020 Olympics
The president of the Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWF) Birendra Prasad Baishya was named the Chef de Mission for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on January 10, 2019. This is the first time that the sport of Weightlifting has been given the honour of the Chef de Mission for the Olympics.
Smriti Mandhana, ICC Women's Cricketer of the Year
India’s left-handed opening batter Smriti Mandhana was crowned women's cricketer of the year by ICC on December 31, 2018. The 22 year old is only the second Indian woman to win an International Cricket Council award. The first was fast bowler Jhulan Goswami who was named the women's player of the year in 2007.
Indian Cricketer Rishabh Pant Makes History
Indian wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant became the country's first keeper to complete twenty catches in a Test series on December 30, 2018. Pant broke the records of former cricketers Naren Tamhane and Syed Kirmani who had nineteen dismissals in 1954-55 and 1979-80 respectively. Australia's Brad Haddin holds the record for the most catches (29) in a Test series.
Jasprit Bumrah, Highest Wicket Taker in 2018
The Indian fast bowler became the highest wicket-taker in international cricket in 2018. With 78 wickets in 2018, he has overtaken South Africa pacer Kagiso Rabada who was at 77 wickets. Bumrah took 48 wickets in Tests, 22 in ODIs and 8 in T20Is in 2018.
Arunima Sinha is the First Female Amputee to Scale Mount Vinson
Arunima Sinha has created history again. The first female amputee to have conquered Mount Everest has now become the world’s first woman amputee to climb the highest peak in Antarctica, Mount Vinson.
India wins First Ever Test Series in Australia
The last day of the India-Australia 4th Test match ended in a draw due to rain. With that, India secured their first ever test series win on Australian soil with a score of 2-1.
Virat Kohli Breaks Sachin Tendulkar's Record of Fastest Batsman
The Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli beat legend Sachin Tendulkar to become the fastest batsman to score 19000 international runs. Kohli achieved this feat on the 1st day of 4th Test Match in Sydney against Australia. Virat Kohli crossed 19000 runs mark in 399 innings while Sachin Tendulkar had scored 19000 runs in 432 innings.
Cheteshwar Pujara Breaks Rahul Dravid's Record
The 30 year old Indian Batsman, Cheteshwar Pujara faced 1258 balls in the test series against Australia to become the batsman who had faced the highest deliveries in a test series in Australia. He beat India’s Former Captain, Rahul Dravid’s record of 1203 balls.
Rishabh Pant Becomes First Indian Wicketkeeper to Score a Test Century in Australia
Indian wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant has become the first Indian wicketkeeper-batsman to score a Test century against Australia on Australian soil. Pant hit 159 runs on the 2nd day of 4th Test Match at Sydney, Australia.
Trending International Stories
Trump May Declare National Emergency
President Donald Trump may declare a national emergency along the border with Mexico. Trump is of the opinion that funding for a wall will help keep out dangerous immigrants. In preparation for this move, the military has been asked by the White House to look into possibilities of diverting funds allocated for disaster relief to the wall.
US Special Envoy in Talks with Pakistan
The US special envoy on Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad held talks with Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi. The focus was on efforts to speed up the Afghan peace process. Zalmay Khalilzad has proposed involving the Taliban for moving forward the peace process in Afghanistan.
MoU Between India and Mongolia
An MoU was signed in the field of art and culture between the Embassy of Mongolia and International Chamber of Media and Entertainment Industry (ICMEI), India. It was signed in the presence of H.E. Gonchig Ganbold Ambassador of Mongolia to India and Dr. Sandeep Marwah, President ICMEI. The MoU will initiate the working together of both countries on different areas like print, radio, television, cinema, animation, Performing and Fine Arts, tourism, hospitality, education, environment, solar energy, skill development, PR events and advertising, Fashion and Design, and Journalism.
Indra Nooyi, Prospective Candidate to Head the World Bank
The White House is considering Indra Nooyi among other candidates to head the World Bank. The current president Jim Yong Kim will be quitting his post in February 2019.
Iran to Launch Two Domestic Satellites
Iran is planning to launch two satellites into orbit, made domestically. Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani has said that these satellites will gather information on its environment. The satellite named Payam will orbit the earth at 600 kilometres above its surface and the second satellite Doosti will orbit at an altitude of 250 kilometres with a focus on agriculture. Both the satellites have been successfully tested and are ready for launch.
Science, Health and Technology Updates
Gaganyaan Top Priority for ISRO
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has announced that its top priority is working on Gaganyaan and launching a major student outreach programme. Dr. Sivan, Chairman of ISRO, has announced their most important project to reach out to students, a Young Scientist Programme (YSP).
India Born, Dr. Rattan Lal to Receive 2019 Japan Prize
India born Dr. Rattan Lal is a Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. He will be honoured with the 2019 Japan Prize in the field of “Biological Production, Ecology”. Dr. Lal was listed among the World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds in 2012 and also among the top one per cent of all researchers in agriculture. The Japan Prize Foundation recognised two scientists this year for original and outstanding achievements. Dr Yoshio Okamoto, Professor Emeritus at Nagoya University in Nagoya, Japan will also be honoured in the field of “Materials and Production”.
Cotton Sprouts on Moon
The Chinese space agency said that a cotton seedling had sprouted on the moon but been left to die. China’s lunar lander is in a freezing night-time nap that will last for two earth weeks. The seed germinated inside a special canister aboard the Chang’e-4 probe which operated for over 212 hours and was shut down as planned.
Bangalore Company to Launch AI Chatbots
The Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (Bescom) is preparing to launch Artificial Intelligence (AI) powered chatbots. These will be dealing with calls and messages that its multiple helplines receive when there are power cuts. The chatbots will be expected to work in multiple interfaces like WhatsApp, social media, and website.
Evidence of Methane Rainfall on Saturn's Largest Moon
Scientists have found evidence of methane rainfall on the north pole of the largest moon of Saturn. The evidence was gathered using data from the Cassini spacecraft. This is the first indication of the start of a summer season in Titan’s northern hemisphere. The Cassini mission launched in October 1997, is a collaboration between NASA, Europe agency and Italian space agency.
Latest Updates From The Sports World
Rani Ramphal to Captain Indian Women's Hockey Team
Rani Rampal will lead the 18-strong Indian women's team in Spain starting Jan 26, 2019. Goalkeeper Savita will be her deputy. The Indian Hockey team will play four matches with Spain and two matches with Ireland.
India Defeats Australia in Cricket in a First Ever
The Indian cricket team defeated Australia in the third ODI at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) to win the ODI series by 2-1. India became the first visiting team to win bilateral series across the three formats against Australia on Australian soil. The Indian team also became the first ever Indian side to win bilateral ODI series in Australia.
Khelo India Youth Games 2019
The second edition of the Khelo India Youth Games concluded in Pune on January 20, 2019. The final medal tally is as follows:
Maharashtra - 228 medals (85 Gold, 62 Silver, 81 Bronze)
Haryana - 178 medals (62 Gold, 56 Silver, 60 Bronze)
Delhi - 136 medals (48 Gold, 37 Silver, 51 Bronze)
Ranji Trophy Cricketer Wasim Jaffer Sets Record with Two Double Centuries
Wasim Jaffer has become the first Indian and Asian batsman to score two double centuries after turning 40 in first-class cricket. He achieved this feat in the quarter-final match for Vidarbha against Uttarakhand in Nagpur. Jaffer also went past the 200-run mark in Ranji Trophy for the ninth time with his 206.
Indian Football Team Coach, Stephen Constantine Resigns
The head coach of the Indian football team, Stephen Constantine has stepped down after the team lost to Bahrain 0-1 leading to its exit from the Asian Cup.