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1) NITI Aayog Organises 3rd Edition of Women Transforming India Awards
•The NITI Aayog organised the 3rd Edition of the Women Transforming India Awards 2018 and launched the upgraded portal of the Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP). The Vice President of India, M. Venkaiah Naidu presided over as the chief guest of the event where he launched the WEP Portal 2.0 and conferred WTI Awards 2018.
•The Women Transforming India Awards were instituted to recognise and celebrate stories of exemplary women from across India. This year’s theme is “Women and Entrepreneurship” and fifteen winners have been chosen through an extensive six-month-long process to identify fascinating and inspiring stories of women entrepreneurs.
2) India Sets World Record In Nuclear Plant Operation
•The indigenously developed Kaiga Atomic Power Station in Karnataka has set a new world record, with one of its units operating uninterrupted for more than 940 days. This is a record for all kinds of nuclear power-generating units, including advanced gas-based reactors in the world.
•The record was earlier held by Unit 2 of Heysham of the United Kingdom, which operated non-stop for 940 days. The same unit had set a world record in October 2018, by operating uninterrupted for 894 days among Pressurized Heavy Water Reactors.
3) UN Climate Conference 2018 Held in Poland
•The UN Climate Conference 2018 was held recently in Katowice, Poland. In the meeting ministers of 200 nations finally reached consensus on rules to implement the 2015 Paris climate agreement.
•The Paris accord aims to limit the rise in global atmospheric temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius from pre-industrial revolution levels. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres hailed the development. The concerns of developing nations including India and least developed nations on funding for carbon credit were finally addressed.
4) Ranil Wickremesinghe Sworn In As PM Of Sri Lanka
•Mr. Ranil Wickremsinghe was sworn in as Prime minister of Sri Lanka by President Maithripala Sirisena thus bringing an end to the weeks-long political crisis in the country.
•Mr. Wickremsinghe was removed as Prime minister in October and was replaced by Mahinda Rajapaksa who resigned after failing to garner a majority in Parliament. This is the fifth time Mr. Wickremsinghe has been sworn in as Prime minister which is a record in Sri Lanka.
5) Denmark’s Foreign Affairs Minister Anders Samuelsen Visits India
•Foreign Affairs Minister of Denmark Anders Samuelsen arrived in New Delhi on a two-day official visit to India. Mr. Samuelsen will meet External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.
•The two Ministers will hold discussions on various aspects of bilateral ties as well as important regional and multilateral issues of mutual interest. A number of MoUs will be exchanged after the meeting. The visiting dignitary will also meet Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu.
6) Philippines’ Catriona Gray Crowned Miss Universe 2018
•Philippines’ Catriona Gray has been crowned Miss Universe 2018, becoming the fourth woman from the country to win the title. Tamaryn Green from South Africa was named the first runner-up while Miss Venezuela Sthefany Gutiérrez stood third at the pageant which was held in Bangkok, Thailand.
•The 24-year-old Gray, who was born in Australia and studied at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, was one of the odds-on favorites going into the competition. India was represented by 22-year-old Nehal Chudasama.
7) Shree Saini From USA Crowned Miss India Worldwide 2018
•Indian-American Shree Saini has been crowned Miss India Worldwide 2018 at a pageant held in the Fords City of New Jersey. Sakshi Sinha from Australia and Anusha Sareen from the United Kingdom were respectively declared first and second runner-ups in the 27th annual global pageant for people of Indian origin.
•Indian-origin girls from as many as 17 countries participated in the annual beauty pageant. India’s Mandeep Kaur Sandhu, who hails from Haryana, was crowned Mrs. India Worldwide 2018.
8) India Announces $1.4 billion Package for Maldives, Agreements Signed
•India announced a $1.4 billion package for the Maldives to meet its immediate budgetary as well as some medium-term requirements. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the package that includes soft loans after talks with visiting Maldives President Ibrahim Solih in New Delhi.
•The Maldives is weighed down by some $3 billion in debt to China and the country is looking to India and Saudi Arabia, besides others, for help. In November 2018, New Delhi had offered an immediate loan of $25 million to the Maldives during a visit by its new foreign minister Abdullah Shahid.
•Here are 4 agreements that were signed during the state visit of Maldives President Ibrahim Solih:
1. Agreement on the Facilitation of Visa Arrangements
2. MoU on Cultural Cooperation
3. MoU for Establishing Mutual Cooperation to Improve the Ecosystem for Agribusiness
4. Joint Declaration of Intent on Cooperation in the field of Information & Communications Technology and Electronics.