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CURRENT AFFAIRS: NATIONAL
Indian Railways launches integrated helpline number 139 for passengers
- The Indian Railways has integrated its helpline numbers into a single number — 139 for quick grievance redressal and enquiries by passengers during their train journeys.
- The new helpline number 139 will take over all the existing helpline numbers. It will be easy for passengers to remember this number and connect with Railways for all their needs during train travel.
- The Helpline 139 will be available in twelve languages. It will be based on Interactive Voice Response System. A call can be made on this number from any mobile phone and not just smart phones, thus, providing easy access to all mobile users.
Home Minister Amit Shah inaugurates new campus of NFSC in Nagpur
- Union Home Minister Amit Shah dedicated the new campus of National Fire Service College (NFSC) under Ministry of Home affairs in
- Mr Shah stated, NFSC campus spread across 42 acres is fully equipped with the international standards. He informed that four-year Bachelor level course in Fire Engineering approved by the All India Council for Technical Education along with the short and long-term courses in Emergency Management, Medical Life Support Management and Disaster Management will be taught in this college.
- Shah also appealed the states and Union territories to make use of expertise in the National Fire Service College in Nagpur and take the initiative in making the fire brigade service as an independent service in their states.
- In the same function, the Minister also laid the foundation stone for the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) Academy which will be established near Suradevi village of Nagpur. About 5,000 personnel will be trained in the field of disaster management by this academy each year.
- On this occasion, 15 President’s Fire Service medals for gallantry were also awarded by the Minister to the awardees including Fire Service Officers and Firemen from different parts of the country.
Govt approves release of Grant-in-Aid of Rs 2.6 cr to J&K Pollution Control Board
- Environment and Forests Ministry has approved the release of Grant-in-Aid of 6 crore rupees to J&K Pollution Control Board.
- Under this scheme, the JK PCB shall provide financial assistance to 3742 number of Eco Clubs of registered schools in both the regions of J&K along with 96 Eco-Clubs for registered Colleges.
- The environment education, awareness and Training scheme of Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Govt. of India for National Green Corps (Eco-Clubs) which was closed for over a decade has been revived for J&K.
About J&K National parks:
- Dachigam National Park
- Kazinag National Park
- Kishtwar National Park
- Salim Ali National Park
CURRENT AFFAIRS: INTERNATIONAL
Hillary Clinton appointed as new chancellor of Queen’s University Belfast in Ireland
- Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has been appointed the new chancellor of Queen’s University in Belfast, Ireland. Clinton, who has been a regular visitor to Northern Ireland going back to the first visit of President Bill Clinton in 1995, becomes the university’s first female chancellor.
- She will serve as chancellor for a five-year term, The Irish Times reported after quoting a statement issued by the varsity today. The position of chancellor has been vacant since the death in 2018 of Thomas J Moran, chairman, president, and chief executive of Mutual of America Life Insurance Company.
Nepal’s Prez launches ‘Visit Nepal Year 2020’ campaign to promote tourism
- President of Nepal Bidya Devi Bhandari launched much-awaited Visit Nepal Year 2020 campaign amidst a spectacular ceremony held at historic Dasaratha Rangashala in Kathmandu
- The ambitious campaign is aimed to promote tourism in Nepal and attract 2 million tourists during the year 2020.
- In his address Nepal’s Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, Yogesh Bhattarai said the government has a goal of making tourism one of the key pillars of Nepali economy. He said Visit Nepal Year 2020 will create a new image of Nepal in the hearts and minds of the world community
Recent news related to Nepal:
- India Builds Girls’ Hostel for Nepal Armed Police Force School
- South Asian Games: India leads with 214 medals
- SURYA KIRAN – XIV: Indo-Nepal joint military Exercise
- India, Bhutan, Nepal: Trans Border Conservation Park
About Nepal :
- Capital: Kathmandu
- Currency: Nepalese rupee
- Prime minister: KP Sharma Oli
CURRENT AFFAIRS: STATES
UPSRTC launches ‘Damini’ helpline for women
- The Uttar Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (UPSRTC) has launched a dedicated women helpline, ‘Damini’, which is a calling and a WhatsApp service for the safety of women.
- The unique number “81142-77777” has been subscribed for the helpline, which is an extension of the ‘Nirbhaya Yojana’ that aims to ensure safety of women.
- The service will be functional from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day and will be exclusively handled by women officers at the UPSRTC headquarters and regional offices.
- Women passengers can lodge their complaints on the general helpline number, 1800-180-2877, after 6 p.m.
Recent Schemes Launched in UP
- Kanya Sumangala Yojana launched in UP for families with girl child.
- Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath to launch integrated emergency number 112.
- UP launches online driving licence tracking facility.
- Uttar Pradesh government launched a dedicated web portal and e-Ganna App, a mobile application at a function in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh.
- The Uttar Pradesh Government haslaunched a three-day campaign against Filaria as GoI has set a target of eradicating Filaria completely by 2021.
Pragati Maidan metro station renamed as Supreme Court metro station
- The Kejriwal government in Delhi announced the renaming of Pragati Maidan metro station as the Supreme Court metro station.
- The committee has also decided to rename Mukarba Chowk on Delhi’s Outer Ring Road and its flyover after Kargil war martyr Captain Vikram Batra and MB Road as Acharya Sri Mahapragya Marg and the Lajpat Nagar flyover as Shri Jhulelal Setu among others.
Maharashtra Govt launches ‘Cyber Safe Women’ initiative
- Maharashtra Government has launched a ‘Cyber Safe Women’ initiative under which awareness camps will be held across all the districts of the state regarding cyber safety.
- In a statement, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has stated the initiative will help in educating women about how the web is used by anti-social elements and child predators to commit various types of crimes.
- Thackeray stated rising instances of cyber-crime need to be curbed and the government is looking to take all measures to ensure that women and children do not fall prey to these criminal activities.
Ritualistic festival ‘Lai Haraoba’ begins in Tripura
- In Tripura, Lai Haraoba, a ritualistic festival observed by Manipuri meitei communities since ancient times, began in Agartala . The five day long festival is jointly organised by Department of Information and Cultural Affairs, Government of Tripura, Puthiba Lai Haraoba Committee and Puthiba Welfare & Cultural Society, Agartala.
- The five-day long festival was inaugurated by Speaker of state legislative Assembly, Rebati Mohan Das. The festival aims to uphold tradition and cultural values of Meitei community.
- Lai Haraoba is celebrated through oral literature, music, dance and rituals. A cultural troupe from Manipur has also come to take part in festival. They will be performing various cultural and traditional musical skits including Manipuri martial arts, folk music and folk dances during the festival.
About Tripura :
- Capital: Agartala
- Governor: Ramesh Bais
Chief minister: Biplab Kumar Deb
Bhubaneswar civic body launches ‘Go Green’ campaign
- The Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation launched a campaign to sensitize citizens on the protection of the environment and encourage exchange eco-friendly gifts this new year.
- The ‘Go Green’ campaign was carried out in five different places in the city where municipal officials distributed saplings, books and cotton bags.
- The municipal officials gifted saplings, books and cotton bags to citizens at a ‘Go Green’ kiosk near BMC office at
- The campaign was launched at Chandrasekharpur, Ganganagar, Saheed Nagar, State Museum and ‘I Love Bhubaneswar’ plaza on Janpath road. Similarly, officials in collaboration with Axis Bank launched ‘Mu Safaiwala’ public van.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: BANKING AND FINANCE
PPF, Sukanya Samriddhi Scheme remain attractive, interest rates kept unchanged
- Public Provident Fund (PPF) and other small savings scheme will continue to carry the same interest rate for the March quarter
- Kisan Vikas Patra (KVP) will give a yield of 7.6% and mature in 113 months
- The government kept interest rates of public provident fund (PPF) and other small savings schemes unchanged for the last quarter of the financial year 2019-20, starting from 1 January, 2020 to 31 March, 2020. Interest rates of small savings schemes are currently revised on a quarterly basis
- The interest rate on the PPF and the 5-year National Savings Certificate remains unchanged at 7.9% while the 5-year Monthly Income Scheme fetches 7.6%.
- Interest rate for the five-year Senior Citizens Savings Scheme has been retained at 8.6%. The interest on the senior citizens’ scheme is paid quarterly. Interest on savings deposits has been retained at 4% annually.
- The interest rates on 1-year, 2-year and 3-year post office deposits have been kept unchanged at 6.9% while the 5-year deposit will fetch 7.7%.
- Similarly, the interest rate on the popular 5-year post office recurring deposit scheme has been kept steady at 7.2%.
CURRENT AFFAIRS :ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS
HDFC gets requisite approval to hold a 51.2% stake in Apollo Munich Health Insurance Company
- Housing Development Finance Corporation Ltd (HDFC), India’s largest mortgage financier, has received approval from Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) to acquire 2% stake in Apollo Munich Health Insurance – a joint venture between Apollo Hospitals and German reinsurer Munich Re Group.
- The Corporation and HDFC Ergo have received all requisite approvals for the acquisition including competition commission of India (CCI), Reserve Bank of India and the last being from Irdai on 1 January. Post the completion of the proposed acquisition, Apollo Munich will be merged with and into HDFC Ergo, subject to approval from the Mumbai bench of National Company Law Tribunal.
- In June 2019, HDFC had agreed to acquire the entire 8% stake of Apollo Hospitals Group in a health insurance joint venture with German reinsurer Munich Re Group as part of its strategy to tap this potential growth market.
- CEO- Aditya Puri
- Headquarters- Mumbai
About Competition Commission of India:
- Chairman- Ashok Kumar Gupta
- Headquarters- New Delhi
- Chairperson- Subhash Chandra Khuntia
- Head quarters: Hyderabad
CURRENT AFFAIRS: APPOINTMENTS AND RESIGNATION
Lakshmi Vilas Bank appoints S Sundar as interim MD and CEO
- Lakshmi Vilas Bank (LVB) has appointed S Sundar, its chief financial officer, the interim managing director (MD) and chief executive officer (CEO) effective January 1, 2020. As part of this, he resigned from the post of CFO.
- He has also been appointed an additional director of the bank.
- In August 2019, the bank’s MD & CEO, Parthasarathi Mukherjee, resigned from the position and the post was lying vacant since then.
- Non-Executive Chairman: B K Manjunath
- Headquarters: Chennai
- Tagline: The changing face of prosperity.
Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha gets 1 year extension
- Umesh Sinha, Deputy Election Commissioner in the Election Commission of India, who was set to retire, was given a one-year extension from January 1, 2020 till December 31, 2020 by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet.
In the past, Mr. Sinha has served as Chief Election Commissioner, Uttar Pradesh, and Higher Education Secretary of the State.
About Election Commission(EC)
- Headquarters: New Delhi.
- Chief Executive: Sunil Arora
- Formed: 1950
CURRENT AFFAIRS: AWARDS AND HONOURS
Telangana girl Malavath Poorna scales Mt. Vinson Massif, highest mountain in Antarctica
- Malavath Poorna, who became a role model for the rural youth, after she conquered Mt Everest five years ago, has now set another record. Poorna has now conquered Mt Vinson Massif, the Antarctica continent’s highest mountain peak (4,987 mts).
- The 18-year-old girl from the most marginalised section of society, has now become the first and youngest tribal woman in the world to set foot on the six tallest mountain peaks across six continents. So far, Poorna scaled Mt Everest (Asia, year 2014), Mt. Kilimanjaro (Africa, 2016), Mt. Elbrus (Europe, 2017), Mt. Aconcagua (South America, 2019) Mt. Cartsnez (Oceania region, 2019) and Mt. Vinson Massif (Antarctica, 2019).
- Poorna is very close to achieving her goal of scaling the seven tallest summits located in seven continents.
- Poorna is gearing up to scale Mt. Denali (North America’s highest mountain peak), the dream of every mountaineer in the world.
Recent news related to telangana:
- Rapid spread of Dengue fever in Telangana
- Bathukamma-2019: The Telangana Flower Festival begins
- Telangana government declares 2020 as Artificial Intelligence year
- Telangana’s first food park inaugurated in Nizamabad district
- SARAL evaluates Indian states based on their attractiveness for rooftop development. Karnataka has been placed at 1st rank in Index followed by Telangana.
Piyuus Jaiswal honoured with Global Peace Excellence Humanitarian & Global Bihar Excellence Awards 2019
- Piyuus Jaiswal was awarded the Global Bihar Excellence Award 2019.
- This award was presented by Rajya Sabha MP and Padma Shri Awardee Dr CP Thakur and Bihar Women Commission president Dilmani Devi in Patna to promote women empowerment.
- The award was given to recognise and felicitated Piyuus Jaiswal’s contribution towards social welfare, women empowerment and introducing new talent in the field of arts and culture.
- Piyuus Jaiswal was recently awarded the humanitarian award with the Global Peace Excellence Humanitarian Award 2019.
- He has also been awarded the Page 3 Award in Mumbai last year.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: SUMMITS AND CONFERENCE
14th Global Healthcare Summit in Vizag in 2021
- Visakhapatnam will host the prestigious three-day 14th Global Healthcare Summit from January 3, 2021.
- Being organised by American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), the conference will see the participation of over 500 doctors from the US, Australia, Britain and other countries. The brochure of the summit was released by MP M.V.V. Satyanarayana.
- The focus of the Global Health Summit is an Indian-centric approach, with special events such as global impact and India’s contribution in providing cost-effective medicines and addressing shortage of healthcare professionals.
India to Host 36th International Geological Congress in March 2020
- India will host the 36th International Geological Congress, aimed at the development of Earth Sciences, in the National Capital Region (NCR) from March 2-8 2020.
- The “Olympics of Geosciences,” the event will witness debates and discussions on a wide range of issues affecting the world, such as sustainable development, climate change, water and mineral resources.
- India is the only Asian country to host the Congress twice. The 22nd session of IGC was held in New Delhi in 1964.
- The event is expected to be attended by nearly 6,000 delegates from across the world.
- The theme of the science programme at the 36th IGC is ‘Geosciences: The Basic Science for a Sustainable Future.’
- The IGC is a geosecientific event held under aegis of the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS).
International Union of Geological Sciences
- Motto: Earth Science for the Global Community
- Headquarters:Founded in Paris, France, secretariat in Beijing, China
President :Qiuming Cheng (Canada/China)
CURRENT AFFAIRS: RANKING
Qantas Airways is the world’s safest airline
- Indonesia’s PT Garuda Indonesia is the most punctual airline.
- The world’s safest and most punctual airlines are in the Asia Pacific region
- Qantas Airways Ltd was named safest airline in the world on a top-20 list published by AirlineRatings.com, followed by Air New Zealand Ltd and Taiwan’s Eva Airways Corp.
- Singapore Airlines Ltd was ranked sixth, while Cathay Pacific Airways and Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd were ranked ninth and tenth respectively.
- com stated it takes into account factors including audits by governing and industry bodies, crash and serious incident record, profitability and fleet age.
- In a separate survey by OAG Aviation Worldwide Ltd, PT Garuda Indonesia was crowned 2019s most punctual Panama’s Copa Airlines SA ranked second among airlines arriving or departing within 15 minutes of scheduled times. Japans Skymark Airlines Inc, Hawaiian Airlines Inc and Latam Airlines Group SA rounded out the top five.
- Among the major United States (US) carriers, Delta Air Lines Inc was the only one to make it into the top 20.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: DEFENCE
Air Force Chief Formally Inducts Dornier Aircraft Into 41 Otters Sqaudron
- Indian Air Force Chief RKS Bhadauria has formally inducted the light utility aircraft Dornier into the 41 “Otters” Squadron.
- The aircraft was inducted during a ceremony at the Palam Air Force Station.
- The IAF in 2015 had signed a contract to purchase 14 Dornier aircraft, which are flight inspection system planes, for Rs 1,090 crore from state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).
- While the first aircraft was delivered on November 19, the second is expected to be delivered in early 2020.
- The Dornier-228 aircraft is a multi-purpose, fuel-efficient, rugged, lightweight twin-turboprop aircraft with a retractable tricycle landing gear.
- This aircraft has been exported to Seychelles and Mauritius.
General Bipin Rawat proposes creation of Air Defence Command by June 30
- Chief of the Defence Staff, CDS General Bipin Rawat has directed various branch heads to come up with recommendations for inter-service synergy and jointness in a time bound manner.
- After assuming charge as CDS, General Rawat held a meeting with important functionaries of Headquarters Integrated Defence Staff
- He also directed that a proposal to create Air Defence Command be prepared by 30th of June this year. He also set out priorities for execution of synergy by 30th June and 31st December this year.
- Some of the areas identified for jointness and synergy include creation of common logistics support pools in stations where two or more services have their presence.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: SPORTS
5th IHAI National Ice Hockey Championship-2020 begins in Leh
- The 5th Ice Hockey Association of India (IHAI) National Ice Hockey Championship -2020 has begun in Leh . In the inaugural match in Under-20 Boys category between Chandigarh and Haryana, the contest ended in a draw with 4 goals each.
- The tournament will continue till 7th January in Karzoo Ice Hockey Rink in Leh, where the Army, Chandigarh, Delhi, Haryana, Maharashtra and home team Ladakh are fighting for the championship in U-20 boys category.
- Similarly, in Girls category Ladakh, Maharashtra, Delhi and Chandigarh are playing for the championship.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: OBITUARY
Noted Assamese theatre personality Ratna Ojha passes away
- Eminent Assamese dramatist, litterateur and social activist Ratna Ojha passed away due to old age-related ailments.
- He was recipient of the prestigious Natyasurya Award in 2005 for his contributions to theatre, Ojha had introduced street plays in Assam in 1971.
Senior NCP leader D P Tripathi passes away
- Senior Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Devi Prasad Tripathi passed away after prolonged illness.
- Tripathi joined politics at the age of sixteen and was one of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi’s aides. He joined the NCP in 1999 after leaving the Congress opposing Sonia Gandhi’s foreign origins.
Social activist Alajangi Viswanath Swamy passes away
- Noted social activist and former Rajya Sabha member from Odisha, Alajangi Viswanath Swamy passed away.
- Swamy had played an active role in social reformer Vinoba Bhave’s Bhoodan Movement.
- He was nominated to the Upper House of the Parliament on April 4, 2012 and was in the position till April 3, 2018.
DAILY CA-1st and 2ndJanuary
- Global Family Day- 1st January
- 28 UIDAI-run Aadhaar Seva Kendras operational across the country
- PM to distribute Krishi Karman Awards and 3rd installment of Rs 2000 to 6 crore beneficiaries under PM KISAN
- Government launches web portal to block stolen, lost mobile phones
- PM Modi’s ‘Pariksha pe Charcha’ programme rescheduled on Jan 20
- EC launches Political Parties Registration Tracking Management System
- National Green Corps scheme revived in J&K
- Pacific Island nation Palau bans ‘reef-toxic’ sunscreen
- At 67,385, India records highest number of babies born globally on New Year’s Day: UNICEF
- RBI launches mobile app for visually challenged to identify denomination of currency notes
- GST collection rises to Rs 1.03 lakh crore in December for second time in a row
- Flipkart partners with government’s DAY-NULM to empower MSMEs
- FSSAI launches ‘Verified Milk Vendor Scheme’ in Gujarat
- 11-day long ‘Dhanu Jatra’ begins at Bargarh in western Odisha
- Entire Nagaland declared ‘disturbed’, AFSPA extended for six more months
- Odisha government launches e-certificate project
- Khattar launches Atal Canteen in Karnal
- Kerala Becomes First State To Pass Anti-CAA Resolution
- 10,000 cameras to be used in Gujarat Lion Census, 2020
- AP:Sand delivery at doorstep from Jan 2
- Kerala Travel Mart to support Green Cochin Mission
- CRPF DG Bhatnagar retires; ITBP chief given additional charge
- Umaro Cissoko Embalo wins Guinea-Bissau presidential election
- Vinod Kumar Yadav re-appointed as Chairman Railway Board for one year
- Centre appoints Rohan Shah as Governor on ERIA Board
- Krish Srikkanth, Anjum Chopra to receive CK Nayudu Lifetime Achievement Award
- Sanjay Gupta of ”Jagran” to be honoured with Lokmanya Tilak journalism award
- ISRO acquiring land in TN for its 2,300-acre second launch centre
- S Dhoni picked captain of ESPN Cricinfo’s ODI and T20 teams of past decade
- ICC plans to scrap five-day Tests from 2023
- Third Khelo India youthgames to be held in Guwahati in Jan 2020
- Australia pacer Peter Siddle announces retirement from international cricket
DAILY CA- 3rd January
- Indian Railways launches integrated helpline number 139 for passengers
- Home Minister Amit Shah inaugurates new campus of NFSC in Nagpur
- Govt approves release of Grant-in-Aid of Rs 2.6 cr to J&K Pollution Control Board
- Hillary Clinton appointed as new chancellor of Queen’s University Belfast in Ireland
- Nepal’s Prez launches ‘Visit Nepal Year 2020’ campaign to promote tourism
- UPSRTC launches ‘Damini‘ helpline for women
- Pragati Maidan metro station renamed as Supreme Court metro station
- Maharashtra Govt launches ‘Cyber Safe Women’ initiative
- Ritualistic festival ‘Lai Haraoba’ begins in Tripura
- Bhubaneswar civic body launches ‘Go Green’ campaign
- PPF, Sukanya Samriddhi Scheme remain attractive, interest rates kept unchanged
- HDFC gets requisite approval to hold a 2% stake in Apollo Munich Health Insurance Company
- Lakshmi Vilas Bank appoints S Sundar as interim MD and CEO
- Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha gets 1 year extension
- Telangana girl Malavath Poorna scales Vinson Massif, highest mountain in Antarctica
- Piyuus Jaiswal honoured with Global Peace Excellence Humanitarian & Global Bihar Excellence Awards 2019
- 14th Global Healthcare Summit in Vizag in 2021
- India to Host 36th International Geological Congress in March 2020
- Qantas Airways is the world’s safest airline
- Air Force Chief Formally Inducts Dornier Aircraft Into 41 Otters Sqaudron
- General Bipin Rawat proposes creation of Air Defence Command by June 30
- 5th IHAI National Ice Hockey Championship–2020 begins in Leh
- Noted Assamese theatre personality Ratna Ojha passes away
- Senior NCP leader D P Tripathi passes away
- Social activist Alajangi Viswanath Swamypasses away