Daily Current Affairs 21 May 2018

Daily Current Affairs 21 May 2018
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# Paraguay officially moves embassy to Jerusalem

Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes has inaugurated his country’s Israel embassy in Jerusalem.Paraguay is now the third country to move its embassy to Jerusalem, following the United States and Guatemala.Israel considers the entire city of Jerusalem to be its capital, while the Palestinians see east Jerusalem as the capital of their future state.

# India to hold naval exercise with Vietnam

3 Indian warships namely – INS Sahyadri, INS Shakti & INS Kamorta entered into Tien Sa Port, Vietnam on May 21.A professional interaction will be held between personnel of the two navies as well as official calls & interaction with dignitaries of the Vietnamese government.On completion of the harbour phase, warships from the two navies would conduct their 1st joint naval exercise.

# China, U.S. vow against trade war

China and US have issued a joint statement on economic and trade consultations, vowing not to launch a trade war against each other.The two sides agreed to take effective measures to substantially decrease U.S. trade deficit in goods with China.Trump administration want’s to lower America’s goods trade deficit with China by at least $200 billion by the end of 2020.

# Prominent historian Lewis dead

Bernard Lewis, a preeminent scholar of Middle Eastern history whose work profoundly shaped Western views of the region has passed away.He was a Cold War hawk, a strong pro-Israel Jew, and influential among White House and Pentagon planners of the US-led 2003 invasion of Iraq.His prolific scholarship, including more than 30 books traced fault lines that define the modern Middle East.

# Chatra Parivahan Suraksha Yojana

Haryana government is going to launch Chatra Parivahan Suraksha Yojana for the safety of girls.Under this scheme, all the girl students will get free travel facility from their home to their educational institutions.The primary objective of this scheme is to ensure that the girls feel secure at public places, workplaces and while traveling.

# Revenue from e-tourist visa hits Rs 14 billion

The government has earned Rs 14 billion as revenue from the highly successful e-Visa scheme, since its launch in 2014.The e-Visa scheme has been implemented by the foreigners’ division of the Home Ministry.The scheme also covers business and medical categories.The facility is available for nationals of 163 countries for entry into India through 25 international airports & 5 seaports.

# CRPF raises ‘Bastariya Battalion’

In a bid to enhance combat capabilities in Naxal-hit area of Bastar district in Chhattisgarh, the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), for the first time, has decided to include local representation in a special unit.The special unit has been numbered as 241 and named as ‘Bastariya Battalion’.All the candidates have been selected from four highly Naxal infested district in Chhattisgarh.

# NMCG asks DDA to expedite “Asita”

National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) inspected the Yamuna River Front Development (RFD) project being implemented by Delhi Development Authority.Yamuna RFD project aims to restore, revive and rejuvenate the river’s floodplains and make them accessible to the people of Delhi.A special focus of the project is on reviving the river’s biodiversity.Asita generally means River Yamuna.

# CSC to reach 2.50 lakh gram panchayats

The network of Common Service Centres (CSCs) are set to be expanded to 2.50 lakh gram panchayats by the end of 2018.Common Service Centres (CSCs) provides electronic services in banking, insurance, passport seva, telemedicine and pensions to villages in India.The CSC model has adopted six villages in the country in the pilot phase.

# Nepal to shut India’s field office

Nepal has decided to close Indian Embassy’s field office in Biratnagar in the near future as it has “outlived its purpose”.India was permitted to set up a temporary field office in 2008 to issue passes to vehicles for plying on Indian roads in the bordering regions after Koshi floods damaged a 17-km stretch of east-west highway.Nepali had also tried to remove the field office 6 years ago.

# Tamil Nadu e-Governance Agency got award

Tamil Nadu e-Governance Agency (TNeGA) has received an award for promoting ease of doing business.TNeGA developed an investor facilitation portal that provides single window clearance to industrial proposals in the state.The award was given in recognition of simplification of procedure and ease with which clearances from various authorities can be procured by a business.

# Convention on Rejuvenation of Krishna River

Experts in water conservation from across the country will deliberate on ways to rejuvenate the Krishna river at the maiden national convention of the Indian Water Council (IWC) May 22.The Indian Water Council was formed in April 2018 in Rajasthan.The ‘National Convention on Rejuvenation of the Krishna River’, is the IWC’s first event.

# Pawel Pawlikowski won the best director award

Poland’s Pawel Pawlikowski won the best director award at the 2018 Cannes film festival for his love story “Cold War”.Cold War is the 1st Polish film to compete for the Palme d’Or award since Roman Polański’s ‘The Pianist’ scooped up the major award in 2002.Set against the background of the Cold War in the 1950’s in Poland, the film depicts an impossible love story in impossible times.

# Railways to use AI to control air circulation

For the first time, the Railways will use artificial intelligence to control air circulation, to issue emergency alerts and also for supervision and maintenance work in a 10.28-km-long tunnel in Imphal.It will alert the passenger in case of fire and help us in quick evacuation in case of an issue.This system will also be used in the Hyderabad, Mumbai and Ahmedabad metros.

# INSV Tarini all set to return on May 21

Indian Naval Sailing Vessel (INSV) Tarini is all set to complete its circumnavigation of the globe and return to Goa on May 21.INSV Tarini was set out for sail on September 10, 2017 from Goa.It is the first Indian all-women crew to circumnavigate the globe.The expedition titled ‘Navika Sagar Parikrama’, is aimed at promoting women empowerment.

# Exercise ‘Gandiv Vijay’ in Rajasthan

Thousands of soldiers with warfighting equipment of South Western Command’s Chetak corps are engaged in intensive training in Mahajan field firing ranges of Rajasthan under exercise ‘Gandiv Vijay’.The exercise, which began two months ago, will conclude on May 23.The exercise involves multi-mode mobilization from dispersed locations.

# NASA’s hunting probe completed lunar flyby

NASA’s latest planet-hunting satellite has successfully completed a lunar flyby, passing about 8,000 kilometers from the Moon.It beamed back a test image revealing more than 200 thousand stars.The flyby provided a gravity assist that helped the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) sail toward its final working orbit.TESS is NASA’s search for planets outside our solar system.

# Aadhaar, PAN mandatory for broker license

The revenue department has made Aadhaar and PAN mandatory for persons seeking a customs broker license.Customs broker is a person licensed to act as an agent on behalf of importer/exporter for a transaction of business relating to entry or departure of conveyances or goods at any customs station.The license is issued by the Directorate General of Performance Management.

# EESL distributes 30 cr LED bulbs

State-run Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (EESL) has distributed over 30 crore light emitting diode (LED) bulbs across the country under the ‘Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All’ (UJALA) scheme.The UJALA scheme was launched in January 2015 and is currently the largest LED distribution programme in the world.It is a non-subsidized LED lamp distribution project undertaken by EESL.

# Anti Terrorism Day observed on May 21

Anti Terrorism Day is observed every year throughout the country on May 21.The Day is observed to generate awareness in the country among all sections of people, about the danger of terrorism and violence and its effect on the people, society and the country as a whole.Anti-terrorism pledge is taken in all Government offices, public sector undertakings and other public institutions.

# India Sixth Wealthiest Country

India is the sixth wealthiest country in the world with a total wealth of US $8,230 billion.The US is the wealthiest country in the world with a total wealth of US $62,584 billion, according to the AfrAsia Bank Global Wealth Migration Review.Total wealth refers to the private wealth held by all the individuals living in each country. It includes all their assets less any liabilities.

# India saw 211 tuberculosis cases per 1 Lakh

According to the ‘World Health Statistics 2018’ released by World Health Organisation (WHO), India saw an estimated 211 cases of tuberculosis (TB) per 1,00,000 people in 2016,Nepal and Bhutan recorded fewer number of TB cases per 1,00,000 population than India.India has pledged to eradicate tuberculosis by 2025, five years ahead of the global target set by WHO.

# Swraj Paul wins lifetime achievement award

NRI industrialist Lord Swraj Paul has received a lifetime achievement award for his contributions towards promoting brand India in UK.The founder of Caparo Group of industries, Paul was recognised at a UK & Asia Business Awards ceremony, organised by World Consulting & Research Corporation.He has also served as the deputy speaker of the Lords & was appointed to the Privy Council in 2009.

# MPC to meet for three days from June 4

The Reserve Bank of India has advanced the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting by a day to June 4 and also increased the duration to three days.It is for the first time that the MPC will meet for three days.The six-member MPC, headed by the RBI Governor, sets the benchmark interest rate.MPC was set up by amending the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934, through the Finance Act 2016.

# India Post customises affordable life policies

India Post plays an important role in financial services, reaching out in the rural areas with its large and efficient network.Postal Life Insurance extended insurance cover to the rural population under the banner ‘Rural Postal Life Insurance’ (RPLI) in 1995.This scheme is primarily meant for people residing in rural areas, especially women and small and marginal farmers.

# TN to build India’s next generation aircraft

The Aeronautical Development Agency has set the ball rolling for building the Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft by extending an invitation to private players in Tamil Nadu (TN).It is the first time an indigenous military aircraft programme is seeing the involvement of private players.It is also the first time a defence plane development project is proposed to be executed outside Bengaluru.

# Ramalingam appointed as Chief Justice

Justice Ramalingam Sudhakar was sworn-in as the Chief Justice of the High Court of Manipur.The acting Governor of Manipur Jagdish Mukhi administered the oath of office to Justice Ramalingam Sudhakar.Justice Ramalingam Sudhakar was appointed as Chief Justice of Manipur High Court by the President of India.

# RBI slaps fine on South Indian Bank

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has slapped a penalty of ₹ 50 million on South Indian Bank Limited for non-compliance with the directions issued by it.The non-compliance pertains to Income Recognition and Asset Classification (IRAC) norms, Know Your Customer norms and treasury function.Further, the bank is also pulled up for deficiencies in its compliance function and compliance culture.

# Centre launches clean-up drive for beaches

The Union Environment Ministry has launched a drive aimed at cleaning 24 beaches and water bodies as well as 24 polluted river stretches in the run-up to the World Environment Day on June 5.The theme of the World Environment Day, to be hosted by India this year, is ‘Beat plastic pollution’.The Ministry has formed 19 teams to implement the campaign.

# Freshwater decline in India

India is among the hotspots where overuse of water resources has caused a decline in the availability of freshwater, according to study using an array of NASA satellite observations of Earth.The study found that Earth’s wetland areas are getting wetter and dry areas are getting drier.In northern India, groundwater extraction for irrigation of crops has caused a decline in available water.

# Himanta elected Vice-President of BAC

The President of Badminton Association of India (BAI), Himanta Biswa Sarma was elected as the Vice-President of Badminton Asia Confederation (BAC).The election took place during the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the continental body in Bangkok, Thailand.Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma became president of the Badminton Association of India in April 2018.

# Lalit Kala Akademi gets new Chairman

Artist and sculptor Uttam Pacharne has been appointed as the chairman of the Lalit Kala Akademi.Currently, he is ​a member of the advisory committee, Kala Academy, Goa.He is the recipient of National Lalit Kala Award and Maharashtra Gaurav Puraska from Government of Maharashtra.The Lalit Kala Akademi or National Academy of Art is India’s national academy of fine arts.

# Govt. creates DG for trade remedies

Ministry of Commerce has issued a notification for a unified Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR).DGTR will be the apex national authority for all trade remedial measures including anti-dumping, countervailing duties and safeguard measures.It will also provide trade defence support to domestic industry and to exporters in trade remedy investigations instituted by other countries.

# First South Asian to be elected in Oregon

Indian American Susheela Jayapal has been elected as a member of the Board of Commissioners of Multnomah County in Oregon, USA.With this Susheela becomes first South Asian to be elected in Oregon.Susheela, a political newcomer, will represent North and Northeast Portland commissioner’s seat.

# Youngest woman to scale Mt. Everest

Shivangi Pathak from Haryana has become youngest women of the country to scale Mt Everest.16-year-old Shivangi climbed the Mt Everest to spread the message that women could overcome any obstacle to achieve their goals.In 2014, 13-year-old Malavath Poorna from India had climbed Mt Everest from Tibet side and became the youngest girl in the world to the summit at Everest.

# Workshop on countering online radicalisation

European Union and National Investigation Agency organised a workshop in New Delhi in which Indian & European experts discussed various aspects of online radicalisation.The officers from both sides deliberated upon the processes that lead to radicalisation and recruitment.This workshop is the clear reflection that the EU and India are joining hands in the fight against terrorism.

# SC approves draft Cauvery Management Scheme

The Supreme Court approved the Centre’s draft Cauvery Management Scheme for smooth distribution of water among four southern riparian states.The scheme would deal with the issue of water share of the four states in different circumstances like normal and deficient water years in the Cauvery river basin.The top court had modified the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT) award of 2007.

# Govt allows eSIMs, hikes connections limit

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has allowed the use of e-SIMs while issuing guidelines for the same.The eSIMs will be installed in the device and details of service providers can be updated in it when buying a new connection.The DoT has enhanced the number of connections per user to 18.

# CIA’s first female director

US Senate has approved Veteran spy Gina Haspel as CIA’s first female director.She replaces former CIA chief Mike Pompeo who was recently made Secretary of State.Central Intelligence Agency is a civilian foreign intelligence service of US federal government that analyses national security information from around the world.

# Para-National Games under Khelo India Scheme

The inaugural National Para Games, on the lines of National Games for able-bodied athletes, will be held under the Khelo India Scheme in June-July in Bengaluru.The Paralympic Committee of India will be responsible for the technical conduct of the Games.All the funding will be done by the Sports Ministry under the Khelo India Scheme.

# Indian economy to grow 7.6% in 2018-19

According to the UN World Economic Situation and Prospects (WESP), India’s economy is projected to grow 7.6% in the fiscal year 2018-19, remaining one of the fastest growing economies in the world.This is a substantial recovery from the 6.7% growth India registered in the year 2017.The report also said that the recovery in private investment remains a crucial challenge in India.

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