Current Affairs Today – December, 22nd, 2017 | Latest News and Updates

INDIAN AFFAIRS

PM Announces Relief Package for Cyclone Ockhi Affected States

PM Announces Relief Package for Cyclone Ockhi Affected States

  1. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has visited at the Ockhi affected Lakshwadeep, Tamil Nadu and Kerala for the see of the visual of there, meets affected people, and has announced the relief package of Rs 325 crore for all 3 states and ex-gratia assistance of Rs. 2 lakh to the next of kin of the deceased.
  2. This was the just after the Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh election results, this was the one of the business for Prime Minister NarendraModi. Prime Minister reiterated his govt’s commitment to leave no stone unturned to find the missing and bring them home.
  3. He has gone to the Lakshadweep, Kanyakumri and Thiruvananthapuram on a whirlwind visit to meet affected families as well as review progress in relief measures.
  4. The scene in Poonthura a small fishing village in Kerala was an emotional one. The distraught families could not disguise their despair as they interacted with the Prime Minister. PM Modi addressed them as well. He recounted his govt’s rescue and relief efforts. PM said that he had personally tracked the progress and had sent Defence Minister to oversee the operations.

 

Assam Signs MoU with Isha Foundation to Save Rivers

Assam Signs MoU with Isha Foundation to Save Rivers

  1. Assam government and the Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev has headed the Isha Foundation on Monday inked an MOU for rejuvenation and conservation of rivers.
  2. Assam chief minister, Sarbananda Sonowal said, “Assamese civilization has been spawned by the Brahmaputra and Barak and saving these great rivers is one of the prime objectives of the state government. These rivers are the lifelines of our state and they have been sustaining our economy and colouring our culture with varied hues. We have undertaken initiatives to turn these rivers into valuable resources by managing their waters effectively.”
  3. Vasudev said, “Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given lots of importance to this project. After his meeting to him and listening about his works with “Rally for Rivers” the Prime Minister even promptly constituted a committee for protection of environment.”
  4. The chief minister added, “Siltation due to erosion and deforestation is one of the major factors affecting the lives of the rivers, the chief minister stated that the central government has already constituted a cabinet sub-committee to study the problem of flood and erosion in the state and Rs 100 crore has been allotted by the centre for conducting a study of River Brahmaputra.”

 

Kiren Rijiju Inaugurates Training of Trainers Program for Sendai Framework

  1. The Union Minister of State for Home Affairs, Shri Kiren Rijiju, has started the first national-level training of trainers programme to sensitise various Central Ministries and Departments on utilisation of Sendai Monitor for developing action plans for Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) in New Delhi today.
  2. India, has been going to do the one of the SFDRR, is committed to work towards achieving the targets enshrined in the Framework. Interactive sessions on the application of assessment and diagnostic tools to assess the risk management plans helped participants understand the utilisation of defined indicators to monitor the progress of the Sendai targets.
  3. Senior officials of NDMA and UNISDR, and participants from nearly 12 Central Ministries including Ministry of Defence, Power, Mines, Health and Family Welfare, Housing and Urban Affairs, Road Transport & Highways, National Institute of Disaster Management (NIDM) and National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) participated in this workshop. Various Central agencies such as National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC), India Meteorological Department (IMD), Central Water Commission (CWC), Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) and Department of Telecommunications (DoT) were also present.

 

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

India, Myanmar Ink MoU for Development of Rakhine State

India, Myanmar Ink MoU for Development of Rakhine State

  1. India and Myanmar has today signed the agreement on restoration of normalcy and development of the Rakhine State, at where the thousands of Rohingya Muslims recently fled following incidents of violence against the community.
  2. This agreement has signed between the Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar and Myanmar Deputy Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement U Soe Aung in Myanmar’s capital Nay Pyi Taw, this is the first government-to-government pact inked by Myanmar with a cooperation partner focused on socio-economic development and livelihood initiatives in the Rakhine State.
  3. “This is intended to help the government of Myanmar achieve its objective of restoration of normalcy in Rakhine State and enable the return of displaced persons,” the external affairs ministry said. Under this MoU, India proposes to take up, among others, a project to build prefabricated housing in Rakhine State so as to meet the immediate needs of the returning people, it said.
  4. “In addition to the Rakhine State project proposals, a number of ongoing friendship projects were reviewed,” the ministry said. “Issues regarding the functioning and maintenance of Sittwe port and the road from Paletwa–Zorinpui were also reviewed,” it said.
  5. “All matters relating to bilateral cooperation, including follow up on decisions taken during recent visit of the Prime Minister to Myanmar, as well as matters pertaining to Rakhine State were discussed during these meetings,” the ministry said in a statement.

 

World Bank Provides Loans of $125 Million for STRIVE Project

World Bank Provides Loans of $125 Million for STRIVE Project

  1. World Bank has announced to give the $125 million (around ₹800 crore) loan to India for the STRIVE project for skill development.
  2. The main aim of this event is the (Skills Strengthening for Industrial Value Enhancement) is to improve access to quality and market-driven vocational training as well as apprenticeships, the Finance Ministry said in a statement issued on Wednesday.
  3. The financing agreement was signed between the World Bank and the Finance Ministry yesterday, it said.
  4. “The result areas for the project include improved performance of industrial training institutes; increased capacities of state governments to support industrial training institutes and apprenticeship training; improved teaching and learning; and improved and broadened apprenticeship training,” it added.

KEYS:

  1. The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans to countries of the world for capital programs
  2. President: Jim Yong Kim
  3. CEO: Kristalina Georgieva (2 Jan 2017–)
  4. Headquarters: Washington, D.C., United States
  5. Subsidiaries: International Finance Corporation, MORE
  6. VPs: Antonella Bassani (Budget, Performance Review, Strategic Planning), MORE
  7. Parent organization: United Nations

 

In a First, France Passes Law to Ban all Oil and Gas Production by 2040

  1. France’s parliament has given the approval for the law banning all exploration and production of oil and natural gas by 2040
  2. In this law, the out side of the permits will not be renewed and no new exploration licenses will be granted in France or its overseas territories. The French government claims the ban is a world first.
  3. However, it is largely symbolic, since oil and gas produced in France accounts for just 1 per cent of domestic consumption – the rest is imported. Environment Minister Nicolas Hulot said the law shows “current generations can take care of future generations.”
  4. “Very proud that France has become the first country in the world today to ban any new oil exploration licences with immediate effect and all oil extraction by 2040,” Emmanuel Macron, the French President, said on Twitter.

 

BANKING AND FINANCE

Skill Development Ministry and Maruti Suzuki Sign MoU to Impart Skill Training’

Skill Development Ministry and Maruti Suzuki Sign MoU to Impart Skill Training’

  1. The skill development ministry and Maruti Suzuki has signed an agreement to impart training to youth and enhance their employment potential.
  2. As part of the agreement with the Directorate General of Training (DGT) which comes under the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, “Maruti Suzuki will ensure that not less than 80 per cent of trainees are placed with Maruti Suzuki or its business partners.
  3. “The automobile manufacturer will also ensure eligible trainees take up apprenticeship / higher education in suitable streams and shall also guide the students to become entrepreneurs. As on December 15, 2017, over 1,680 students have enrolled for the course and this figure is expected to go up to 2,400 by FY2018-19,” an official statement said.
  4. Speaking on the occasion, Shri Anantkumar Hegde, Honourable Minister of State for Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, Government of India said, “I am happy to be here and learn new things from you. This is a very important initiative and I am pleased to be a part of it. Maruti has been providing training at the primary level for the last two years and during our last interaction the company had expressed its intent about expanding their reach. I would suggest that, along with basic training, Maruti should also provide advanced level of training to those students who are interested in learning further. Right now the training program caters to students like 10th pass and 12th pass outs.”
  5. “There are various companies in automation and automobile ancillary industries that are run by entrepreneurs. These entrepreneurs need first hand training to run their business successfully. Maruti can design special courses for these budding entrepreneurs since skill training and entrepreneurship are essentially two sides of the same coin. No matter how much we do, our scope is limited by the system that we exist in. However, the industry is always ahead and has been like this always. Japanese companies like Suzuki and others are the epitome of ethics when it comes to their working culture.”

KEYS:

  1. The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship is a Ministry of Government of India set up on 9 November 2014 to coordinate all skill development efforts across the country
  2. Website: msde.gov.in
  3. Jurisdiction: Government of India
  4. Headquarters: 2nd Floor, Annexe Building Shivaji Stadium, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Marg, Connaught Place, New Delhi – 110 001
  5. Cabinet minister: Dharmendra Pradhan
  6. Programs: National Skill Development Mission
  7. Agency executive: Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister

 

RBI Places Bank of India Under PCA

RBI Places Bank of India Under PCA

  1. There has been the some of the public sector banks under the ‘prompt corrective action’ (PCA) framework due to their weak balance sheets, the Reserve Bank of India now seems to have turned its gaze on large banks.
  2. “This (action) is in view of high net NPA, insufficient CET1 Capital and negative ROA for two consequent years. This action will contribute to the overall improvement in risk management, asset quality, profitability, efficiency, etc of the bank,” BoI said.
  3. Dinabandhu Mohapatra, MD & CEO, BoI said “Our financial results Q1 (net profit: ₹88 crore) and Q2 (net profit: ₹179 crore) were good. RBI’s action is based on inspection for FY17 and on that basis they have taken a view on certain big accounts, which is not bank-specific but industry-specific. In none of these accounts are we the leader (consortium). So, for those accounts, a view will be taken (by RBI) for all banks in the course of time.”
  4. “We have brought down our corporate book from 52 per cent to 48 per cent (of the overall loan book). Since we have increased our NPA provision to 65 per cent, our net non-performing assets (ratio) is only 6.4 per cent.
  5. “Given the kind of re-balancing we have done in our asset book, the kind of control on slippages (both in terms of percentage and amount), and growth in retail and agriculture, etc, we have achieved, we are already on the right course,” said Mohapatra.
  6. “The action points focus on profit retention, capital augmentation, provision coverage, diversification of credit portfolio, rationalisation of expansion and cost control and are well complimenting the steps already taken by the management in these directions,” the bank said in a stock exchange notice.

KEYS:

  1. The Permanent Court of Arbitration is an intergovernmental organization located at The Hague in the Netherlands
  2. Founded: 1899
  3. Authorized by: Hague Conventions of 1899 and 1907

 

CCI Clears IndusInd Bank-Bharat Financial Merger

  1. Shares of IndusInd Bank and Bharat Financial Inclusion has been listless in Wednesday’s trade despite the Competition Commission of India that has been in the term of the approval of the amalgamation between the two.
  2. According to a filing with the stock exchanges, “The Competition Commission of India had yesterday approved the merger of IndusInd Bank and Bharat Financial Inclusion. The scheme remains subject to the receipt of approval from the RBI and regulatory approval, including approval of the stock exchanges, SEBI, the National Company Law Tribunal and respective shareholders.”
  3. “In October, IndusInd Bank had announced the takeover of micro finance lender Bharat Financial Inclusion. Chairman of the bank, R. Seshasayee, had said the acquisition would help develop reach and would be a strong partnership. The two institutions had worked together for many years and were, therefore, comfortable with each other’s people and culture,” he said.
  4. The board of directors of IndusInd Bank has in the month of the October has comes at the ‘confidentiality, exclusivity, and standstill agreement’ with Bharat Financial Inclusion to evaluate a potential merger between the two companies.

KEYS:

  1. IndusInd Bank Limited is a Mumbai based Indian new generation bank, established in 1994
  2. The bank offers commercial, transactional and electronic banking products and services
  3. Headquarters: Mumbai
  4. CEO: Romesh Sobti (1 Feb 2011–)
  5. Owner: Hinduja Group

Science and Technology

NASA develops new tool to fast-track search for alien life

NASA develops new tool to fast-track search for alien life

  1. In the term to search the life in the ahead to the alien terrains, NASA has created and developed a new spectroscopy instrument that has been created and developed to detect compounds and minerals associated with biological activity more quickly and with greater sensitivity than previous instruments.
  2. “Our instrument is one of the most advanced Raman spectrometers ever developed,” said M Nurul Abedin of NASA Langley Research Center who led the research team. “It overcomes some of the key limitations of traditional micro Raman instruments and is designed to serve as an ideal instrument for future missions that use rovers or landers to explore the surface of Mars or Jupiter’s icy Europa moon,” Abedin said.
  3. “We had to make sure the instrument was very small and light so that it could travel aboard a small, fuel-efficient spaceship that would make the nine-month journey to Mars or the six-year journey to Europa,” said Abedin.
  4. “The instrument must also work with other instruments aboard a rover or lander and be unaffected by the harsh radiation conditions found on other planets,” Abedin said.

SPORTS

Messi Beats Ronaldo to La Liga Best Player Award

Messi Beats Ronaldo to La Liga Best Player Award

  1. In the term of the Cristiano Ronaldo guiding Real Madrid for the first title that has got in the year 2012 in the recent campaign, FC Barcelona’s Lionel Messi beat him to Marca’s La Liga best player award.
  2. The Argentine was awarded his prize by the publication on Monday night in the city of Barcelona, where he also won the Alfredo di Stefano Trophy.
  3. “As I always say, if the individual awards come, they are welcome, but my main goal is to fight for all of the titles,” Messi said during the Marca football awards ceremony here on Monday.

OBITUARY

Therese DePrez, ‘Black Swan’ Production Designer, Dies at 52

Therese DePrez, 'Black Swan' Production Designer, Dies at 52

  1. Thérèse DePrez, the well-regarded production designer on such films as Black Swan, Summer of Sam and High Fidelity, has died at the age of 52 years.
  2. “I told her to keep her expectations low. I said we’ll get $5,000 or $10,000 if we’re lucky,” Kardos said. “Well, we raised almost $80,000 from hundreds of people. That’s how many people she touched in this life. Incredible.”
  3. She was a “production designer that I always wanted to work with,” Aronofsky said in a Fox Searchlight featurette for the stylish drama. “She turned me down film after film after film. She said it was because of schedules, but I didn’t believe her. Finally, I got a chance to work with her, and it was a great collaboration.”
  4. “As Darren and I started to talk about Swan Lake [the production at the center of Black Swan] and the stage set and how abstract that we wanted it to be and how modern we wanted it to be, it started moving to a very specified, minimal look,” DePrez said.

IMPORTANT DAYS

National Mathematics Day

  1. In India, the day ‘December 22 has been celebrated as the National Mathematics Day. This was announced by Dr Manmohan Singh, Ex-Prime Minister of India, at the time of the start of the ceremony of the celebrations to mark the 125th birth anniversary of Srinivasa Ramanujan held at the Madras University Centenary Auditorium on 26 February 2012. Dr Manmohan Singh also announced that the year 2012 would be celebrated as the National Mathematics Year.
  2. On this day the Indian mathematical genius Srinivasa Ramanujan was born on 22 December in the year 1887 and died on 26 April in the year 1920. It was in recognition of his contribution to mathematics the Government of India decided to celebrate Ramanujan’s birthday as the National Mathematics Day every year and to celebrate 2012 as the National_Mathematics_Year. National Mathematics Day is celebrated with numerous educational events held at Indian schools and universitie

 

 

Sandeep Kumar

Hi Guys, I am Sandeep Co-founder of IASpaper and UPSCToday Staying in Mumbai (India) and pursuing graduation in Computer Science and Engineering from Mumbai University. I love helping Aspirants. You may join me on Facebook

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *