Current Affairs Today
Indian Railways have announced recruitment for 13,487 posts of Junior Engineers, Junior Engineers (IT), Depot Material Superintendent and Chemical and Metallurgical Assistant.
The notification for the posts has been issued on the Railway Recruitment Board website. Railways Ministry in a release said the last date for applications for this two-stage recruitment is 31st of this month.
The Ministry these vacancies are spread over different Railway Zones and States and candidates from all over India can apply against these vacancies.
National Green Tribunal imposed a fine of 100 crore rupees on Meghalaya government for its failure to curb illegal coal mining in the state.
The amount of the fine has to be deposited with the Central Pollution Control Board within two months. The action comes after a high-level committee submitted an adverse report to a bench headed by NGT chairperson AK Goel.
The report stated that the majority of the mines in the state are operating without a lease or license.
Senior advocate Raj Panjawani is assisting the tribunal as an amicus curiae in the matter. He said, during the hearing, Meghalaya government admitted that a large number of mines are operating illegally.
U.S. President Donald J. Trump signed into law the Asia Reassurance Initiative Act (ARIA), which passed the U.S. Senate earlier in December.
According to the White House, the act establishes a multifaceted U.S. strategy to increase U.S. security, economic interests, and values in the Indo-Pacific region.
Karnataka MP Pratap Simha on Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and requested him to review the existing recruitment policy of Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS)
In an official communication Simha urged Jaitley to reinstate the provision of ‘Local language’ which was dropped in 2015 notification of the Central recruitment agency IBPS.
Referring to the language barriers in the banking sector, the Mysuru-Kodagu MP observed that officers from other states who are not well-versed with Kannada are facing trouble in daily business.
Simha wrote that notification of 2012-14 which demands the knowledge of local language should be reinstated to resolve the problems faced by local job aspirants.
Union Surface Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari will participate in IIT Bombay’s prestigious event Pre-Summit 2019.
The Union Minister will share his ideas on flagship programmes like Start-up India, Mudra, and Skill India Mission.
Veteran Industrialist and BJP Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar will moderate the interactive session.
Arunima Sinha, the first female amputee to have conquered Mt Everest, created yet another record as she became world’s first woman amputee to climb Mount Vinson, the highest peak in Antarctica.
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will most likely launch Chandrayaan-2, the country’s second mission to the Moon.
The features of the Chandrayaan-2 mission are: Chandrayaan-2 mission is a totally indigenous venture comprising of an orbiter, a lander, and a rover.
There would be a controlled descent and the lander would soft-land on the lunar surface at a specified site and deploy a rover.
The Lok Sabha passed a Bill to amend the Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2018. The amendment will allow individuals to offer voluntarily biometric ID as a means of identity verification for obtaining services such as opening a bank account and getting a mobile phone connection.
The Bill also gives a minor the option to opt out of the 12-digit identity scheme on attaining the age of 18. It provides for stiff penalties for violation of norms set for the use of Aadhaar and bans service providers from storing core biometric information and Aadhaar number of individuals who voluntarily offer it as a means of authentication.
China successfully deployed Chang’e-4 lunar probe to carry out a string of experiments on the unexplored far side of the moon. It has named the lunar rover as ‘Yutu 2’.
The Lunar rover Yutu 2 touched the lunar surface and left a trace on the loose lunar soil. The rover’s touchdown is part of China Chang’e-4 lunar probe.
Analysts say that China’s lunar probe is part of its Made in China-2025 project. It will be focusing on advanced technology, including space applications.
Researchers from Purdue University, Indiana, US, found a large protein in spinach that may aid in the development of new medications for millions around the world dealing with alcohol use disorders, chronic pain, and mood disorders. They discovered two peptides which are naturally metabolic products of Rubisco, a large protein found in many plants like spinach, that may aid in the development of new medications.
The researchers are pursuing synthetic and computational strategies to improve these peptides to make them more effective. The rubiscolin peptides are also being investigated for their ability to regulate dietary intake and are even commercially available in anti-ageing skin products.
The Tripura government seeks a special package of Rs.8,389.71 crore from the Centre for development of the State’s indigenous people who constitute one-third of its population.
The tribal people of the State remained backward as no previous government had taken any initiative for their development. The BJP-IPFT government headed by Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb had taken the decision to seek the package from the Centre.
Centre has appointed Sudhir Bhargava as the new Chief Information Commissioner (CIC). Four new members have also been appointed to CIC, taking its strength to seven. Four vacancies still remain. Mr. Bhargava, a former Secretary to the Social Justice Ministry, has been a Commissioner since June 2015. He will be the ninth chief of the CIC.
The CIC is the highest appeal body under the Right to Information Act. It has been functioning with just three members since the former chief and several members completed their tenure last month.
Mumbai city’s air quality continued to be in the poor category, after being in the very poor category. Experts have said that the air quality index (AQI) will stay in the poor to very poor categories for around a month. This is the worst it has been since Diwali.
India Meteorological Department forecast said that the city has been experiencing a minimum temperature was 15 degrees Celsius, although far from the season’s lowest of 12.4 degrees in December. Meanwhile, the maximum temperature was a warm 33.9 degrees Celsius. According to System of Air Quality Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR) the city’s average AQI stood at 284 (PM 2.5). It falls under poor category.
Air Quality Index (AQI):
Air Quality is measured in terms of presence of particulate matter in the air. PM 2.5, or small particulates of dust that are 2.5 microns in size can penetrate deeper into lungs and enter the bloodstream. Similarly, PM 10 are slightly larger but coarser particles.
China successfully tested its most powerful non-nuclear weapon, dubbed as the Mother of All Bombs. The bomb, whose strength is only second to that of a nuclear weapon, was dropped by a Chinese H-6K bomber.
The bomb is five to six metres long (16 to 20 feet), but weighs less than the American version. In a short video published on the website of state arms manufacturer Norinco, the massive bomb drops on to a plain and produces a gigantic ball of fire and black smoke.
The Lok Sabha passed the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill, 2018. The Bill will allow a panel of eminent professionals to run the scam-tainted Medical Council of India (MCI) so that medical education can be regulated in the best manner.
Health Minister Jagat Prakash Nadda said this Bill superseded the MCI and the powers of the council had been vested in a Board of Governors (BoG). The BoG will have all eminent personalities and include directors of AIIMS and PGI, Chandigarh. This board will continue to perform till a council is constituted.
The Bill seeks to replace an ordinance issued in September 2018. A separate Bill to replace the MCI with the National Medical Commission is pending in Parliament.