Current Affairs 2018 January - Current Affairs Today Banking, SSC, UPSC
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January 2018 – Current Affairs and Quiz
31 January 2018 Current AffairsQUIZ
Private sector Axis Bank launched the fourth edition of ‘Evolve’ in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu. It is an annual multi-city knowledge series for Bank’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) customers. The current edition of 'evolve' is titled as “Transform your Family Business into your dream company”. It will empower the SMEs to understand the winning strategies and best practices that have helped some of the leading family businesses in India grow into the reputable enterprise. This edition will span across 30 cities.Google introduced a new app named "Bulletin" that allows anybody to submit stories for and about their communities. This is a free, lightweight app for telling a story by capturing photos, video clips and text right from your phone, published straight to the web. The app is made for contributing hyperlocal stories about your community. The application has been launched as a limited pilot project and is available in Nashville, Tennessee, and Oakland, California.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).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 by a High-Powered Committee will be provided annual financial assistance of Rs. 5 lakh per annum for 8 years. The Khelo India School Games are being held from 31st January to 8th February 2018 in New Delhi.Sharath Kamal beat top-seeded Anthony Amalraj to win the men singles title for the eighth time, equalling the feat of Kamlesh Mehta in the 79th edition of the 11Even Sports Senior Nationals in Ranchi, Jharkhand. Suthirta Mukherjee from West Bengal emerged the new women champion, beating Hyderabad Nationals winner Manika Batra.India 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, according to a report by New World Wealth. He was the best-performing wealth market globally in 2017 as its total wealth swelled from 6,584 billion dollars in 2016 to 8,230 billion dollars in 2017, registering a 25% growth.Himachal Pradesh Government launched Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF) project to promote organic farming. It was launched by Chief Minister, Jai Ram Thakur. The project aims to increase agriculture produce and the income of farmers by the year 2022. ZBNF is set of natural farming methods where the cost of growing and harvesting plants is zero. It is a farming practice that believes in the natural growth of crops without adding any fertilizers and pesticides or any other foreign elements.The Indian Navy launched ‘Karanj,’ the third Scorpene class submarine. The submarine, constructed by shipbuilder Mazagon Dock Limited (MDL) in Mumbai. The first of the six Scorpene-class submarines, Kalvari, was commissioned into the Indian Navy by Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month. He had called its induction a big step in the country’s defense preparedness. On the occasion, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had called submarine building a sophisticated and exacting craft, which only a handful of countries possess in their industrial capacity.Environment Minister Harshvardhan launched a 2.8 PetaFlop capacity high-performance computer system ‘Mihir’ in Noida. The system will be able to predict weather and climate accurately. This will be helpful in addressing the various issues of agriculture operations and fishing in the country. The system will help the department in predicting severe climate-related calamities and warnings for fishermen. With the launch of the system, India has joined the elite 30 member group of countries which have this advanced technology.The Asian Development Bank and the Indian Government signed a 250 million dollar loan to finance the construction of over 6 thousand 2 hundred kilometers all-weather rural roads in 5 states viz Assam, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and West Bengal under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY). The program is aimed at improving rural connectivity, facilitating safer and more efficient access to livelihood and socio-economic opportunities for rural communities through improvements to about 12 thousand kilometers Rural Roads across the 5 States.India would witness a 'super blue blood' moon between 5:15 PM and 7:37 PM on as the Moon goes from east to west. Occurring for the first time since 1866, the second Full Moon of the month, often called a Blue Moon, would coincide with a lunar eclipse giving it a blood-red tint, with the Moon also being a supermoon.According to a recent report published by World Steel Association (WSA), India overtook the US to become the world’s third-largest steel producer in 2018. China has remained world leader by producing 831.7 MT in 2017, up 5.7% from 786.9 MT in the year-ago period. Japan is second largest global steel producer. The Global steel production had reached 1,691.2 MT in 2017, up by 5.3% compared to 2016 when output was 1,606.3 MT. It includes over 160 steel producers with 9 of the 10 largest steel companies, national and regional steel industry associations, and steel research institutes. It was founded in July 1967 and is headquartered in Brussels, Belgium.Indian-American Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen elected as the Vice Chairman of the US-India Strategic and Partnership Forum. It is a new organization set up to enhance business relations between India and the US. The new representative body - US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF) was set up to promote bilateral trade and work on creating meaningful opportunities that have the power to change the lives of citizens. The USISPF now has 31 board members.
30 January 2018 Current AffairsQUIZ
The Airports Authority of India allocated nearly 3,400 crore rupees for the up gradation of airports in the North East region. AAI chairman Guruprasad Mahapatra told reporters in Guwahati that an amount of 1,720 crore rupees for Assam, 525 crore rupees for Tripura and 800 crore rupees for Manipur has been allocated. Stating that projects worth 934 crore rupees have already been completed, he said work on the rest will be over in the next two or three years.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 will be presented to Asha Bhosle in February 2018. The award has been instituted by the TSR Foundation of T. Subbarami Reddy in memory of producer-director Yash Chopra, who died in 2012.President Ram Nath Kovind called for simultaneous elections to Lok Sabha and state assemblies. He made this statement while addressing the joint sitting of Parliament on the commencement of the Budget Session. He made this statement arguing that frequent elections impede the speed of development as an official language. The idea of ‘one nation one election’ has been proposed for many years starting with Law Commission suggestion in 1999.Rating agency CRISIL revised its outlook on 18 public sector banks (PSBs) from “negative” to “stable” after the government announced bank-wise capital infusion and reform plans. The revision in outlook is primarily driven by the government’s PSB recapitalization programme for this fiscal (2017-18). This will improve the financial risk profile of these banks and help them meet Basel-III regulatory capital norms. It also provides a cushion against an expected rise in provisioning for non-performing assets (NPAs).India is ranked second only to South Africa as the cheapest country to live or retire, according to a recent survey of 112 countries by GoBankingRates. The survey ranked nations on the bases of four key affordability metrics. The metrics are Local purchasing power index, rent index, Groceries index, and Consumer price index. India's local purchasing power is 20.9% lower, rent is 95.2% cheaper, groceries are 74.4% cheaper, local goods and services are 74.9% cheaper. The top three most expensive countries in the survey are Bermuda (ranked 112), Bahamas (111), and Hong Kong (110).A three-day international bird festival will be held at the Dudhwa National Park, Lakhimpur Kheri, Uttar Pradesh in February 2018 with 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.On the mark of 69th Republic Day celebrations, Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) and New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) have launched the first ever 'Khadi Haat' in the country. The Khadi Haat was inaugurated by Union Minister of State Giriraj Singh in Connaught Place, New Delhi.The Parliamentary Group decided to confer Outstanding Parliamentarian Awards to five Members of Parliament. Dr. Najma Heptulla: She is former Rajya Sabha MP and was selected for this award for the year 2013. Hukumdev Narayan Yadav: He is Lok Sabha MP and was selected for this award for the year for 2014. Ghulam Nabi Azad: He is Rajya Sabha and was selected for this award for the year for 2015. The Outstanding Parliamentarian Award was established in 1992 by Shivraj Patil who was then the Speaker of Lok Sabha. The Indian Parliamentary Group selects an outstanding sitting Member of Parliament after considering his/her overall contribution to Parliament.The India-Vietnam Bilateral Army Exercise (VINBAX-2018) was conducted at Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh. It is the first military exercise between the two countries. The six-day-long military exercise (from January 29 to February 3, 2018) was conducted as part of joint training undertaken with friendly foreign countries by Indian Army. VINBAX-2018 was Table Top Exercise to carry out training for Peace Keeping Operations under United Nations (UN) mandate. The Defence ties between India and Vietnam have been on an upswing with the primary focus being cooperation in the maritime domain.The ceremony held on January 29 every year marks the culmination of the four-day-long Republic Day celebrations. As many as 26 performances were lined up by the Army, Navy, Air Force, state police and Central Armed Police Force bands taking turns to fascinate the audience including the president and other dignitaries. Out of the 26 performances, 25 tunes have been composed by Indian musicians, which are ‘Indian Soldiers’, ‘Jhelum’, ‘Aj Diya Rati’, ‘Herana Herana’, ‘Nritya Sarita’, ‘Kundan Singa’, ‘Mayur Nritya’, ‘Manohar’, ‘Natraj’, ‘Battle of the Sky’, ‘Sitare Hind’, ‘Mushkoh Valley’, ‘Giri Raj’, ‘Tejas’, ‘Gagan Shakti’, ‘The Great Marshal’, ‘The Brave Warriors’, ‘INS Nilgiri’, ‘Namaste India’, ‘Jai Bharti’, ‘Amrit Wani’, ‘Veer Gorkha’ and ‘Shere-E-Jawan’, while ‘Power of Sound’ and ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ are two new compositions. The only western tune will be ‘Abide with me’.The Economic Survey, an annual publication of the Finance Ministry, is presented in both houses of Parliament during the Budget Session. It is a review of the developments in the country's economy over the previous one year. Sticking to the practice started last year, finance minister Arun Jaitley will present Union Budget 2018 on 1 February. It presents a summary of the performance of the government's major development programmes undertaken during that period. It also details the main policy initiatives of the government. The Survey sees FY19 GDP growing 7-7.5% vs 6.75% in FY18. The Due to higher expected increase in imports, net exports of goods and services are slated to decline in 2017-18. The Exports biggest source of the boost to growth. It points out that the GDP growth has averaged 7.3% for the period from 2014-15 to 2017-18, which is the highest among the major economies of the world. Demonetisation helped share of financial saving to rise. The ratio of domestic saving to GDP reached 29.2 percent in 2013 to a peak of 38.3 percent in 2007, before falling back to 29 percent in 2016. The Sanitation coverage in rural India increased substantially from 39 percent in 2014 to 76 percent in January 2018. With the launch of Swachh Bharat Mission (Gramin) on October 2, 2014, the sanitation coverage in rural India increased substantially. So far, 296 districts and 307,349 villages all over India have been declared Open Defecation Free (ODF). India is gradually improving its performance in Science and Technology. In 2013, India ranked 6th in the world in scientific publications. Its ranking has been increasing consistently. The growth of annual publications between 2009 to 2014 was almost 14%. This increased India's share in global publications from 3.1% in 2009 to 4.4% in 2014 as per the Scopus Database. The foreign exchange reserves grew by 14.1% on a year-on-year basis from the end of Dec 2016 to end of Dec 2017. The forex reserves as per 2016-17 were estimated at USD 370 billion. It grew to USD 409.4 billion in 2017-18.Mobile payments company Paytm and Alibaba Group-owned AGTech Holdings Ltd have formed a joint venture to launch 'Gamepad' a gaming platform aimed at mobile users in India. The joint venture between Alibaba’s AGTech Holdings and Paytm was originally signed in July 2017. AGTech Media currently holds 45% in the joint venture, and Paytm owns the rest. At the time of the signing of the agreement, Paytm’s parent company One97 invested $8.8 million in the venture for its 55% stake, and AGTech Holdings put in $7.2 million for its 45% stake.Union Minister Babul Supriyo and Madhya Pradesh Industrial minister Rajendra Shukla inaugurated Asia’s biggest auto testing track in Pithampur of Dhar district, Madhya Pradesh. The country’s research and development activities in the sector of automobile engineering and technology will get a boost, due to the construction of the auto testing track in Pithampur. Pithampur will emerge as a hub of the automobile industry in future. Union Minister further mentioned that the state government has provided 4 thousand acre land to NATRiP and the National Auto Testing Track has been developed on 3 thousand acre land. Automobile units can be established by the industrialists on the remaining one thousand acre land.Sandeep Lamichhane became the first cricketer from Nepal to land a deal an IPL contract. He was picked by Delhi Daredevils in the player's auction. The 17-year-old, the only Nepal player in the IPL auction, was sold 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. He hogged the limelight by becoming the second-highest wicket-taker in the tournament with 14 scalps in six innings.
29 January 2018 Current AffairsQUIZ
UAE based Lulu group inked three MoUs with Telangana government with an aim to develop retail and food processing industry in the state. Lulu Group- largest employer in UAE is being promoted by NRI businessman Yusuffali MA. Under the MoUs, Lulu will invest an amount of USD 400 million (Rs 2,500 Crores) to construct 1.8 million square feet area of the mega shopping mall, set up food processing plant and a logistics and export processing unit for fruit and vegetables. The foundation stone will be laid within next three months by the Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, it said adding approximately 6,000 people will get employment.The 60th Annual Grammy Awards, honoring the best achievements from October 2016 to September 2017 were held at Madison Square Garden in New York City, the USA. James Corden was the host of the ceremony for the second year in a row. It was Bruno Mars' night at the Grammy Awards held in New York, with the three biggest wins - Album Of The Year and Record Of The Year for 24K Magic and Song Of The Year for 'That's What I Like'. Album Of The Year: Bruno Mars Song of the Year: Bruno Mars', That's What I Like Record Of The Year: Bruno Mars, 24K Magic Best Pop Solo Performance: Ed Sheeran, Shape of You Best Pop Vocal Album: Ed Sheeran, Divide Best Dance Recording: LCD Soundsystem, Tonite Best Music Film: The Defiant Ones Best Children's Album: Feel What U Feel, Lisa Loeb Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media: La La Land Producer of the Year, Classical: David FrostThe world no.1 Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan 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 enjoyed early success against the Taiwanese till 2011 but the Nehwal has beaten her only once at the 2013 Swiss Open ever since.Trade ministers from various countries including Australia, Japan, and Switzerland met for an informal WTO ministerial gathering in Davos, Switzerland. India was represented by Deepak Jagdish Saksena, ambassador and permanent representative to the WTO. India announced that it will host an informal WTO Ministerial gathering in March 2018. The meeting would be held in New Delhi on March 19-20.The 69th Republic Day of cultural linkage of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and India. The majestic Rajpath displayed India’s historical, educational, religious and cultural heritage with the ASEAN nations by two tableaux out of the 23 tableaux that were rolled down. The Demonstrating the various tableaux on the Republic Day, the one which won many hearts and which displayed the culture and history of Maharashtra was the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Coronation Ceremony. The tableaux also won the 1st prize at the Republic Day celebration in New Delhi. CM Devendra Fadnavis tweeted the victory of winning the prize.The Australian Open is a tennis tournament held annually in Melbourne Park, Australia. First held in 1905, the tournament is chronologically the first of the four Grand Slam tennis events of the year – the other three being the French Open, Wimbledon, and the US Open. The 2018 Australian Open is the 106th edition of the tournament. The tournament is run by the International Tennis Federation (ITF). Roger Federer was the defending champion and successfully defended his title, defeating Marin Cilic in the final. In women's' single, Caroline Wozniacki became the first Danish player to win a Grand Slam singles title, defeating Simona Halep in the final. 1. Men's Singles - Roger Federer (Switzerland) 2. Women's Singles - Caroline Wozniacki (Denmark) 3. Men's Doubles - Oliver Marach (Austria) Mate Pavic(Croatia) 4. Women's Doubles - Kristina Mladenovic (France) - Tímea Babos (Hungary) 5. Mixed Doubles - Gabriela Dabrowski (Canada) - Mate Pavic (Croatia).Under the purview of the telecommunication industry, the Gram Panchayats in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan are been provided access to telemedicine and re-education facilities riding on Bharat Net infrastructure. With the aim of dreaming of a nation to use internet services, the government has taken immense efforts and pressure to provide people with easy access and availability of resources. The rural area development has grown and the nation is moving towards progress at a faster pace. The access to the internet has made the people more prone to the internet and use telecommunication at a higher level. Educating the masses and likewise providing them According to the survey it is found that Hamira is one among the one lakh Gram panchayat covered under the BharatNet phase 1. In total Rajasthan comprises of over 8117 Gram panchayats under the BharatNet service. The Telecom Secretary Aruna Sundarajan visited the areas and people of Jaisalmer to understand their need and comfort of using the internet connectivity, as the government is focussing on utilizing the net infrastructure to these remote areas to provide high-speed broadband internet and internet-based services.Information and Broadcasting Minister Smriti Irani attended a leadership conclave organized by the Art of Living in New Delhi. She shared her experience on a wide array of subjects with students and professionals. Speaking on the occasion the challenges come in everyone's lives but it depends on them how they turn challenges into opportunities.Prime Minister Narendra Modi appealed to political parties to extend their full cooperation to make the session productive. His appeal came during the all-party meeting convened by the government last evening ahead of the session. Briefing reporters after the meeting, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar quoted Mr Modi as saying that the budget session is important and the government pays much attention to the suggestions emerging from the all-party meet. The government will persuade all parties to pass the bill in the Rajya Sabha unanimously. Union Ministers Rajnath Singh and Arun Jaitley, Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav and Sudip Bandyopadhyay of the Trinamool Congress were among those who attended the meeting. Later, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan also held an all-party meet to ensure a smooth transaction of business in the House. All parties have assured to extend cooperation for the smooth functioning of the session.NASA's The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Challenger space shuttle, which had completed 9 successful Earth-orbiting missions, exploded just 73 seconds after lift-off in its 10th spaceflight. The tragedy marked NASA's first-ever accident involving humans off-Earth, killing a 7-member crew. The mishap was blamed on faulty rubber O-rings which caused liquid oxygen and hydrogen fuel to mix, triggering an explosion.The Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, Jai Ram Thakur launched the ‘Shakti’ app for women’s safety in the state. The app, which comes with a panic button, was developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC) of the Himachal Pradesh government. It would be available in both Hindi and English languages and would not require internet connectivity. The main objective of the launch of the app and the helpline is to fight crimes against women in the state.
28 January 2018 Current AffairsQUIZ
One of the highest food producers- India stands on the 100th rank for the title ‘Hungry’. Out of 119, India stood on 100th rank which is disturbing for the nation with the highest population. ‘Global Hunger Index’ carried out by International Food Policy Research Institute chalked out nations that fall under ‘Starving’ category. The 100 out of 119 countries on the GHI, while last year it was at 97 out of 118. Even though India’s 2017 GHI score—31.4—has improved over the years, its hunger problem remains categorized as “serious.” The rankings are based on four indicators: undernourishment, child mortality, child wasting, and child stunting. A GHI score of between 20 and 34.9 points reflects serious hunger levels; between 35 and 49.9, it is alarming, and extremely alarming if over 50.Punjab Government launched Mahatma Gandhi Sarbat Vikas Yojna (MGSVY) for the welfare of the downtrodden citizen across the state. This scheme is aimed at the inclusive growth of the distressed sections of the society. It will be on the line of Antyodaya principles (Antyodaya’ means the rise of the of the last person) and will be implemented in the state’s rural areas. The objective of the scheme is to identify poor and distressed households which have been deprived of the benefits of the various welfare schemes launched.India and Cambodia signed four Memoranda of Understanding in areas, including deepening cooperation in culture and preventing human trafficking. The MoUs were signed after delegation-level talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Cambodian counterpart Hun Sen in New Delhi. The two countries are committed to taking their relationship at a newer level. He attended the India-ASEAN Commemorative summit in New Delhi and also attended the Republic Day Parade yesterday along with other ASEAN leaders.Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley reiterated that the government aims to provide an easy environment for doing business in India. He was addressing a function to mark the International Customs Day in New Delhi. He urged the officers of the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) to be very sharp in the detection process to avoid tax evasion. The role of customs in terms of detection changed a lot. The appealed the officers to perform the role of trade facilitator to cut down costs, time and bring efficiency to the system. He also launched ICETRAK app of CBEC. The app tracks the status of consignments.The Union Finance Ministry relaxed norms of Atal Pension Yojana (APY) to allow small finance banks and payment banks to offer APY distribution. The move is expected to help expand coverage of the scheme and strengthen existing channels of APY distribution. The Key Facts The APY scheme follows of the scheme and strengthen existing channels of APY distribution. The APY scheme follows same investment pattern as applicable to National Pension Scheme (NPS) contribution of Central government employees.Veteran Bengali film actress and Padmashri awardee, Supriya Devi, passed away in Kolkata, following a severe cardiac arrest. She was 83. Supriya Devi made her debut in the Uttam Kumar-starrer Basu Parivar in 1952. She was also awarded the Banga Vibushan - the highest-ever civilian award given by the Bengal Government, and a Life Time Achievement Award by Filmfare during their eastern India version of the award show.Multibillion-dollar Japanese conglomerate SoftBank is reportedly in talks to invest in Indian online insurance aggregator PolicyBazaar at a valuation of $800 million. Indian regulatory policies limit foreign domestic investment in the country at 49% while PolicyBazaar already has foreign investors, namely Tiger Global Management and Temasek Holdings, which control 48% stake in the company.AirAsia India carried 1.42 million passengers in the December quarter, a growth of 79% over the same period last fiscal. AirAsia India is a 51:49 joint venture between Tata Sons and Malaysian carrier AirAsia. The carrier ended the quarter with a fleet size of 14 aircraft after adding one plane in the quarter and six in the year.Japanese cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck has confirmed it lost about $524 million after suffering a hack which stole 500 million NEM tokens It is the biggest cryptocurrency hack ever. NEM, the 10th-largest cryptocurrency by market value, fell 11% over a 24-hour period following the hack. The previous largest theft was pegged at $450 million in 2014 from a Tokyo-based exchange.West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee inaugurated the state's first floating market, located on a lake in Kolkata's Patuli. The market, which was established at an estimated cost of 9 crores is aimed at rehabilitating over 220 shopkeepers displaced during infrastructure development in the city. Over 100 boats at the market sell fruits, vegetables, and fish, among other produce.
27 January 2018 Current AffairsQUIZ
India beat Japan 4-2 in the second leg of the Four Nations Invitational Tournament in New Zealand on Saturday. India, coming on the back of a 5-4 win over Belgium secured a place in the final of the second leg of the tournament. India had thrashed Japan 6-0 in their pool match in the first leg of the tournament.The Doomsday Clock close the planet is to an apocalypse was set at 2 minutes to midnight, the closest since 1953 during the Cold War. The Clock was moved 30 seconds forward compared to 2017, citing growing nuclear risks and climate dangers. The Clock is maintained since 1947 by scientists worldwide including 15 Nobel Laureates.