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CURRENT AFFAIRS: NATIONAL
Good Governance Index launched
- Minister of State for Public Grievances and Pensions DrJitendraSingh launched Good Governance Index in New Delhi on the occasion of Good Governance Day .
- The Good Governance Day is observed on the birth anniversary of former Prime Minister AtalBihari Vajpayee.Speaking on the occasion, Dr Singh stated that Good Governance Index has been scientifically designed on various parameters of governance.
- He futher stated, it has been designed keeping in mind the citizen-centricity, which is the prime mantra of Government. He added that Good Governance Index will also seek to determine the status of governance and provide reference threshold for future also
- Tamil Nadu topped the Good Governance Index launched by the Centre. Maharashtra, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh followed among the ‘Big States’
- Among the ‘Big States’, the poor performers are Odisha, Bihar, Goa, and Uttar Pradesh with Jharkhand coming last.
- The rankings were launched by the Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances, and the Centre for Good Governance.
Centre plans to convert 75 hospitals into medical colleges
- Harshvardhan Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan has stated the Centre is planning to convert 75 hospitals in aspirational districts across the country into medical colleges in a phased manner.
- A target has been set to convert 49 hospitals, including six in Odisha, into medical colleges within the next five years.
- Speaking on the sidelines of the function at AIIMS in Bhubaneswar , the Union Health Minister stated Centre has included 10 districts of Odisha in the list of aspirational districts.
- Stating that the Centre has planned to set up 1 lakh 50 thousand health and wellness centres across the country under the Ayushman Bharat scheme, DrVardhan said that 25 thousand such units have already been established.The minister also reiterated the Odisha government to implement the Ayushman Bharat scheme in the state.
All villages to have free WiFi services by March 2020: Govt
- Communication and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has stated that free WiFi services will be provided to all villages across the country through Bharatnet till March next year.
- Inaugurating Digital Village Gurawara in Rewari in Haryana, Mr Prasad stated, the Ministry has already connected one lakh 30 thousand gram panchayats through Bharatnet. The target is to take this to two lakh 50 thousand gram panchayats. Mr Prasad also stated, the target of the government is to convert at least 15 per cent of villages to the digital village in the next four years.
Govt approves updation of National Population Register; says no documentation or bio-metric needed
- Union Cabinet approves conduct of Census of India 2021 and updation of National Population Register. Cabinet approved expenditure of over 8 thousand 754 crore rupees for the exercise of Census of India 2021 and over 3 thousand 941 crore rupees for updation of National Population Register. The next decennial Census is due in 2021 and would be conducted in two phases.
- The House listing and Housing Census will be carried out from April to September, 2020 and Population Enumeration from 9th February to 28th February, 2021. Briefing reporters after the meeting, Union Minister PrakashJavadekar stated that Census exercise will be done by using App based technology to make it more easier. He assured that no proof, document or biometric will be taken during the process of NPR from the people.
Cabinet approves creation of Chief of Defence Staff post
- The Cabinet approved creation of post of Chief of the Defence Staff, CDS which was announced by Prime Minister NarendraModi during his Independence Day address this year.
- The post of Chief of Defence Staff will be the rank of 4-Star General with salary equivalent to Service Chiefs and will head the Department of Military Affairs to be created under Ministry of Defence and will function as its Secretary. The Cabinet also gave ex-post facto approval for official amendments to the Arms (Amendment) Bill, 2019 moved and passed by the LokSabha on 9th of this month.
- Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has stated that in a historic decision for ushering in reforms in the higher defence management in the country, the Government has decided to create a post of Chief of Defence Staff, CDS and to create a Department of Military Affairs, within the Ministry of Defence.
- The decision to create CDS is a major step towards bringing about jointmanship between the Armed Forces. He added that with this decision the Government has fulfilled the commitment given by the Prime Minister NarendraModi from the ramparts of Red Fort during his Independence Day speech this year
Typhoon Phanfone Misery for Central Philippines on Christmas Day
- Typhoon Phanfonepummelled the central Philippines on Christmas Day, bringing a wet and miserable holiday season to millions in the mainly Catholic nation.
- Thousands were stranded at shuttered ports or evacuation centres at the height of the festive season , and residents cowered in rain-soaked homes as Phanfone leapt from one small island to another for the second day.
- The Philippines is the first major landmass facing the Pacific cyclone belt.
- As such, the archipelago gets hit by an average of 20 storms and typhoons each year, killing scores of people and wiping out harvests, homes and other infrastructure and keeping millions perennially poor.
- A July 2019 study by the Manila-based Asian Development Bank stated the most frequent storms lop one per cent off the Philippine economic output, with the stronger ones cutting output by nearly three per cent.
- Capital: Manila
- Currency: Philippine peso
CURRENT AFFAIRS: STATES
Delhi Launches Housing Scheme For Residents OfUnauthorised Colonies
- Chief Minister ArvindKejriwal launched the ”MukhyamantriAawasYojana’‘ for the residents of Jhuggi-Jhopri (JJ) clusters would provide a pucca house to every citizen of Delhi.
- 65,000 families residing in slum areas were distributed ownership certificates and they would soon be provided pucca houses.
- The Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB), which is mandated to construct houses for the slum dwellers, had launched a survey in June this year to ascertain the number of beneficiaries to be provided pucca houses.
Delhi cabinet approves policy on electric vehicles to curb pollution
- The AamAadmi Party (AAP)-led Delhi government approved a policy on electric vehicles (EVs) with a focus on two-wheelers, shared transport vehicles, and commercial vehicles to lead the change to electric mobility, at a time when the state is grappling with severe levels of pollution.
- By 2024,They want that 25% of the vehicles to be electric vehicles. The aim is to reduce air pollution and create large scale jobs. The emphasis is on two-wheelers and public transport because they operate more.
- Electric two-wheelers are less than 0.2% (of annual sales) and three-wheelers are close to zero.
- In the next year there will be 35,000 e-vehicles and 250 charging stations. In five years, hope that 5 lakh electric vehicles will be registered.
- The Delhi government will give 100% subsidy for the purchase of charging equipment up to₹6,000 per charging point for the first 30,000 charging points at homes and workplaces. This will be routed through power distribution companies responsible for charger installations.
- There will be incentives for electric two-wheelers and three wheelers such as auto rickshaws and e-rickshaws, as well as four-wheeler purchases. An incentive of₹5,000 per kWh of battery capacity will be given for two-wheelers.
11th National Street Food Festival in New Delhi
- The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) in collaboration with the National Association of Street Vendors of India (NVSVI) is organizing the 11th edition of the National Street Food Festival.
- The five-day festival begins on December 25, 2019, and will continue up to the29th of December.
- The festival with a vibrant representation of tastes from across the country is organized at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi.
- The exhibition of stalls has been made according to four divisions- north, south, west, and east.
- The theme of the 11th National Street Food Festival: Healthier Diets
- The FSSAI will also be organizing its ‘ National Eat Right Mela’ during the National Street Food Festival to promote healthy foods for a healthier life. This will be the second edition of the National Eat Right Mela.
- About 130 street food vendor is participating in this year’s festival.
- CM: ArvindKejrival
- Governor: Anil Baijal
Tamil Nadu farmer builds temple for PM Modi
- Prime Minister NarendraModi has an unsual fan in Tamil Nadu. One who was so impressed with his work that decided to build a temple for him in his farm land.
- The temple also has framed pictures of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, current CM EdapadiPalanisamy and Union Home Minister Amit Shah.
- The temple has come up at a village near Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu.
- The 50-year old farmer, P Sankar, inaugurated the temple last week at his farm in sleepy Erakudi village about 63 km from Tiruchirappalli and performs ‘aarti,’ every day.
- He was impressed and had benefitted by welfare schemes like the PradhanMantriKisanSammanNidhi.
About Tamil Nadu
- Capital: Chennai
- Governor: BanwarilalPurohit
- Chief Minister: Edappadi K. Palaniswami
Telanganagovtraises retirement age of RTC staff
- Telangana government has decided to raise the retirement age of employees of the Road Transport Corporation, RTC to 60 from the current 58 years.
- The decision will be applicable to all cadres of employees of the state-owned RTC.
- The increase in age limit for retirement will be extended to each and every employee of the TSRTC.
- Capital: Hyderabad
- Chief Minister: ChandrasekarRao
- Governor: TamilisaiSoundarajan
Rahul Gandhi to launch tribal dance fest in Chhattisgarh
- Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is scheduled to visit Chhattisgarh capital Raipur on December 27 to take part in the opening ceremony of the national tribal dance festival.
- The state is going to hold a three-day ‘National Tribal Dance Festival 2019’ at the Science College ground, wherein over 1,350 artistes from 25 states in India and six other countries are expected to take part.
- The dance competition will be based on four themes- dance during weddings or other auspicious occasions, dance during harvest and agricultural-related festivals, dance during traditional festivals and rituals and the last category is other folk and classical dance forms.
- Around 39 tribal troupes will be making a presentation in these four different categories covering around 43 dance styles
Recent news related to Chhattisgarh:
- Guru Ghasidas National Park to become Chhattisgarh’s 4th tiger reserve
- India’s First Garbage Café to open in Chhattisgarh
- Agri-Business Incubation Centre set up in Chhattisgarh
- Justice PR RamachandraMenon sworn in as Chief Justice of Chhattisgarh
India’s first university for transgender community to come up in UP’s Kushinagardist
- The first university for the transgender community in India will be opened in Uttar Pradesh’s Kushinagar district.
- In the university, the transgender community will be able to study right from class one to PG and even do research and get PhD degree.
- The university, which will come up in Fazilnagar block of Kushinagar district, is being built by the AkhilBhartiyaKinnarSikshaSeva Trust (All-India transgender education service trust).
- It is the first of its kind in the country where members of transgender community will be able to get education and the process of has already been initiated.
- From January 15 next year, two children who are brought up by the community members will get admission and from February and March other classes will start.
Earliest Sanskrit inscription in South India found in A.P.
- In a significant find, the Epigraphy Branch of the Archaeological Survey of India has discovered the earliest epigraphic evidence so far for the Saptamatrika cult.
- It is also the earliest Sanskrit inscription to have been discovered in South India as on date.
- Saptamatrikas are a group of seven female deities worshipped in Hinduism as personifying the energy of their respective consorts. The inscription is in Sanskrit and in Brahmi characters and was issued by Satavahana king Vijaya in 207 A.D.
- The inscription came to light when some local villagers informed the authorities of the presence of a pillar with some engravings when they were restoring and repairing the local Bheemeshwara temple.
- The inscription was first copied and studied and it transpired that it records the construction of a prasada (temple), a mandapa and consecration of images on the southern side of the temple by a person named Kartika for the merit of the king at the temple of Bhagavathi (Goddess) Saktimatruka (Saptamatrika) at Tambrape; Tambrape being the ancient name of Chebrolou
- Coastal city Visakhapatnam, which has the infrastructure, could be considered for being the executive capital and Kurnool can be considered as the judicial capital.
- Amaravatican be retained as Legislative capital.
- Chief Minister: YSR Jagan Mohan Reddy
- Governor: BiswabhusanHarichandan
CURRENT AFFAIRS: BANKING AND FINANCE
GST Council sets up GRC at zonal, state level
- The GST Council on announced setting up the Grievance Redressal Committees (GRC) at zonal and state levels to resolve issues related to the Goods and Services Tax (GST). Approved by the council in its 38th meeting, the committee will consist of both central tax and state tax officers, representatives of trade and industry and other GST stakeholders.
- This will help in speedy redressal of grievances of taxpayers pertaining to tax related issues and the related procedure. The committee will meet once in every quarter or more frequently as decided by the co-chairs.
- The stakeholders will send their grievances or suggestions to the secretary of the committee, who will place the same before the committee.
- The secretary will also submit a quarterly progress report to the GST Council Secretariat and to the GST Policy Wing, CBIC. The committee will be constituted for a period of two years and the term of each member will be for the same period. For time bound handling of grievances and accountability, GSTN will develop a portal for recording all such grievances.
RBI introduces new prepaid payment instrument
- The Reserve Bank has introduced a new type of prepaid payment instrument (PPI) which could be used only for purchase of goods and services up to a limit of Rs 10,000 per month.
- To give impetus to small value digital payments and for enhanced user experience, it has been decided to introduce a new type of semi-closed PPI.
- PPIs are financial instruments that facilitate the purchase of goods and services against the value stored on such instruments.
- As per the circular, such PPIs shall be issued by bank and non-bank ‘PPI Issuers’ after obtaining minimum details of the holder.
- The amount loaded in such PPIs during any month shall not exceed Rs 10,000 and the total amount loaded during the financial year shall not exceed Rs 1,20,000.
- “The amount outstanding at any point of time in such PPIs shall not exceed Rs 10,000.”
- According to the circular, the PPI issuers shall provide an option to close the instrument at “any time and also allow to transfer the funds ‘back to source’ at the time of closure”.
- “The directive is issued under Section 18 read with Section 10(2) of Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007 and is effective from the date of issuance of this circular, the circular added.
Recent news related to RBI:
- NPL scientists develop ink to stop fake passports and currency notes
- RBI to buy and sell Government Securities worth Rs 10,000 crores
- Parliament passes International Financial Services CentreAuthority bill, 2019
- DHFL becomes 1st financial services firm to be taken to NCLT
NTPC may add 10GW of solar energy capacity
- State-owned power giant NTPC is planning to add 10GW of solar energy generation capacity by 2022, which entails an investment of around Rs 50,000 crore, to be funded mainly by green bonds.
- The power generator wants to focus on having a larger renewable energy portfolio and eyes a clean energy generation capacity as large as its thermal portfolio some time in the future.Currently, NTPC has 920 MW of commissioned renewable energy projects comprising 11 solar photo-voltaic projects with a capacity of 870 MW and one wind energy project of 50 MW. It has formulated a long term plan to become a 130 GW company by 2032 with 30 per cent non-fossil fuel or renewable energy capacity. Total installed power generation capacity of the group stands at 57,356 MW.
- The company will complete tendering of 2,300 MW of solar energy capacity by the end of this fiscal. For this, it is open to any borrowing option in the market, which is economical. However, NTPC would mainly rely on green bonds which are offered for pure clean energy projects.
- The company wants to raise money through domestic as well as overseas green bonds. The company would also set up some of its solar energy projects under scheme where it gets viability gap funding to keep the tariff below Rs 3 per unit level.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: AWARDS AND HONOURS
Hubballi gets certificate of merit for healthcare project under Smart City
- ChitaguppiHospital is short-listed for the recognition under Smart City-Empowering India Awards.
- A project under the Smart City Scheme pertaining to the development of Chitaguppi Hospital in Hubballi, Karnataka has been chosen for the award of certificate of merit under the Smart City-Empowering India Awards of the Union government.
- The Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has chosen the Hubballi project for the certificate of merit under the “Best Smart Health Project” category.
- The Smart Healthcare Project under which the development of Chitaguppi Hospital is proposed involves creating facilities such as Electronic Health Records (EMR), Virtual Healthcare, Smart Diagnostics, Smart Hospital Management System Software, Smart Inventory and Drug Management System and others. The total cost of the project is ₹05 crore.
- The certificate of merit would be presented by the Director of National Institute of Urban Affairs during the conference-cum-award ceremony to be held at Hotel The Lalit, New Delhi, on January 10
CSMT gets ‘Eat Right’ station certificate
- Iconic ChhatrapatiShivajiMaharaj Terminus (CSMT) railway station in Mumbai has been conferred with ‘Eat Right Station’ certification with the five-star rating by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) for food safety and hygiene.
- The CSMT is the first station on the Central Railway to get this certification.
- The CSMT has been judged on the basis of compliance of food safety and hygiene, availability of healthy diet, food handling at preparation, food waste management, promotion of local and seasonal food and creating awareness on food safety and healthy diet.
- ‘Eat Right Station’ initiative is a part of the ‘Eat Right India’ movement launched by FSSAI and an FMCG major which is aimed at promoting food safety and hygiene at the static catering units at railway stations.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: SPORTS
Kohli among five Wisden cricketers of the decade
- KohliIndian skipper ViratKohli is one of the five players named in the Wisden Cricketers of the Decade.
- Kohli joins Australian batsman Steve Smith, and South Africans, Dale Steyn, and AB de Villiers.
- Australian all-rounder Ellyse Perry is the only female cricketer in the list.
Leander Paes to retire from Tennis in 2020
- Indian tennis ace Leander Paes has announced that 2020 will be his last year as a professional tennis player.
- The 46-year old will bid adieu to the sport after next season. Leander announced on Twitter that he will be picking and choosing tournaments next year to meet his fans all around the world.
- Leander, who made his Olympic debut in 1992, will look for one final flourish at Tokyo Olympics next year. The Indian has made 7 appearances in a row at the Olympics making him the only tennis player ever to do so.
- Paes has won eight doubles and ten mixed doubles Grand Slam titles.
MS Dhoni named captain of Cricket Australia ODI team of the decade, ViratKohli Test skipper
- World Cup-winning India superstar MS Dhoni has been named the captain of the ODI Team of the Decade compiled by Cricket Australia. 3 Indians are part of the 11-man team, which includes some of the best one-day players of the 2010s.
- MS Dhoni, who led India to World Cup glory in 2011, also handles the wicketkeeping duties in CA’s ODI team.
- Apart from MS Dhoni, India captain ViratKohli and opener Rohit Sharma also find a place in the team of the decade. Rohit opens along with HashimAmla in CA’s team and Kohli, as usual, comes at No. 3.
- Meanwhile, ViratKohli is the only Indian cricketer to have found a spot in Cricket Australia’s Test team of the decade. The India captain has also been named as the skipper of the team.
- ViratKohli only Indian in CA’s Test team of the decade
- MS Dhoni named captian of CA’s ODI team of the decade
- Rohit Sharma and ViratKohli also part of CA’s ODI team of the decade
CURRENT AFFAIRS: SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Last solar eclipse of decade to be observed in parts of country
- A partial solar eclipse will be visible in India along with several other countries this morning.
- This will be an annular solar eclipse that happens when the Moon covers the sun’s centre, leaving the sun’s visible outer edges to form a ‘ring of fire’ or annulus – around the moon.
- In Delhi, the partial eclipse will begin at 8.17 am and will end at 10.56 am while the greatest eclipse will start at 9.30. The total duration of the eclipse will be 2 hours and 39 minutes.
- However, the ring of fire will be visible only from places like Kannur in Kerala along with the southern coast of the country and will not be seen from other places in India.
- This will be the last solar eclipse of the decade. Apart from India, the eclipse will be visible in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Northern Mariana Islands and Guam.
IIT Madras researchers find link between a tissue-remodelling enzyme and hypertension risk
- Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras have found an association between a particular tissue-remodellingenzyme called ‘MMP7’ and risk of hypertension, the premier science institute.
- Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) play a crucial role in hypertension-induced heart tissue remodelling, which results in alterations in the structural and mechanical support to blood vessels. This directly results in increased risk for cardiovascular diseases.
- MMPs are a group of enzymes that have been found to be associated with degradation of extracellular matrix proteins (that provide structural support to the cells), during regular tissue growth.
- MMPS are active during normal growth, and in events such as wound healing, tissue repair and remodelling in response to injury.
- While the activity of MMPs in healthy adult tissues is normally quite low, it has been found that certain illnesses such as inflammatory diseases, tumour growth and metastasis can cause an increase in MMP activity.
CURRENT AFFAIRS: OBITUARY
Renowned Hindi author Ganga Prasad Vimal passes away
- Renowned Hindi authorGanga Prasad Vimal and his two family members were passed away in a road accident in southern Sri Lanka.
- He wrote more than one dozen poetry collections, short story collections and novels. His last novel, Manushkhor, was published in 2013. He received several Hindi literary awards.
DAILY CA-25TH DECEMBER
- Good Governance Day (India)- 25 December
- Union HRD Minister Shri Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ inaugurates 65th National School Games of SGFI in New Delhi
- ShriDharmendraPradhan unveils India’s First CNG Bus which can run 1000 Kms in one fill
- Cabinet approves ex-post facto agreement on Security Cooperation between India and Saudi Arabia
- Cabinet approves MoU between India and Bangladesh on cooperation in Youth matters
- Cabinet approves ex-post facto the agreement between India and Uzbekistan on Cooperation in the field of Combating Transnational Organized Crime and International Terrorism
- Cabinet grants ex-post facto approval to Agreement between India and Sweden on Recognition of Seafarer Certificates
- Cabinet approves MoU between India and Saudi Arabia for cooperation in the field of Renewable Energy
- Cabinet approves Signing of MoU between India and Brazil on Bioenergy Cooperation
- Digital Radio to be launched in 2024: PrakashJavadekar
- PM Modi to unveil statue of AtalBihari Vajpayee in Lucknow
- PM Modi to launch AtalBhujalYojana
- China, Japan, South Korea meet on North Korea, free trade
- RBI caps lending on P2P platforms at Rs50 lakh
- Amazon to open first farm collectioncentre in Pune
- NPAs dip, banks’ profitability up in H1 of FY20: RBI
- SEBI inks pact with Kazakhstan-based AFSA for mutual, technical cooperation
- BhartiInfratel, Indus Towers extend deadline for merger to February 24
- TN Govt, Dept of Fisheries, NABARD ink agreement under Aquaculture Development Fund (FIDF)
- Rohtangtunnel named after Vajpayee
- ESAF Small Finance Bank appoints PR Ravi Mohan as its new chairman
- NiranjanHiranandani Takes Over As New Assocham President
- HemantSoren set to be sworn in Jharkhand CM
- Army officer awarded for developing bulletproof jacket
- UNICEF award to Kamareddy for Swachh Bharat implementation
- India successfully test-fires Quick Reaction Surface to Air Missile system
- Tamil Nadu tops in coverage under micro-irrigation
- Scientists develop new ink formulation for security printing
- ICC Test rankings: Kohli finishes 2019 as top ranked batsman; Rahaneslips to seventh
- Manu Bhaker, AnishBhanwala clinch five gold medals at National C’ships
DAILY CA-26TH DECEMBER
- Good Governance Index launched- Tamil Nadu tops
- Centre plans to convert 75 hospitals into medical colleges
- All villages to have free WiFi services by March 2020: Govt
- Govt approves updation of National Population Register; says no documentation or bio-metric needed
- Cabinet approves creation of Chief of Defence Staff post
- Typhoon Phanfone Misery for Central Philippines on Christmas Day
- Delhi Launches Housing Scheme For Residents Of Unauthorised Colonies
- Delhi cabinet approves policy on electric vehicles to curb pollution
- 11th National Street Food Festival in New Delhi
- Tamil Nadu farmer builds temple for PM Modi
- Telanganagovt raises retirement age of RTC staff
- Rahul Gandhi to launch tribal dance fest in Chhattisgarh
- India’s first university for transgender community to come up in UP’s Kushinagardist
- Earliest Sanskrit inscription in South India found in P
- GST Council sets up GRC at zonal, state level
- RBI introduces new prepaid payment instrument
- NTPC may add 10GW of solar energy capacity
- Hubballigets certificate of merit for healthcare project under Smart City
- CSMT gets ‘Eat Right’ station certificate
- Kohliamong five Wisden cricketers of the decade
- Leander Paes to retire from Tennis in 2020
- MS Dhoni named captain of Cricket Australia ODI team of the decade, ViratKohli Test skipper
- Last solar eclipse of decade to be observed in parts of country
- IIT Madras researchers find link between a tissue-remodelling enzyme and hypertension risk
- Renowned Hindi author Ganga Prasad Vimal passes away