Current Affairs December 2018: For most of the banking exams current affairs section has always been pivotal. Almost all the banking exams have a section of general awareness in their paper. This section of general awareness is essential. It is considered to be the most scoring section in the paper. If candidates prepare well for this section, they can easily get these marks uplift their overall marking.
We advise you to not take the general awareness section as a mere segment. If prepared well for this part, you can find it easy to score, as the section is scoring in nature. Just stay updated on the recent activities happening around you. Most of the upcoming bank exams like SEBI Officer Grade A, Canara Bank PO, JK Bank, IBPS Clerk and many more will have this particular section. You do not have to get hyper when it comes to knowing the current affairs, just stay updated to this page or bookmark this page and we will have your back.
Current Affairs December 2018
Top National and International news evolving around December 2018 are mentioned below:
Current Affairs December 2018 | 31st December
Loan subsidy for middle-income group extended till March 2020
- The Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs, Hardeep Singh Puri said on December 31, 2018, that the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) loan subsidy for middle-income group has been extended till March 31, 2020.
- About one lakh beneficiaries have taken benefit of the scheme so far.
- Under the yojana, around 68.7 lakh houses have been sanctioned, 37 lakh houses have been grounded and 13.5 lakh have been completed and handed over.
- An investment worth Rs 3.85 lakh crore has been envisaged under the mission. More than Rs 6900 crore interest subsidy on housing loans has been disbursed to over 3.14 lakh beneficiaries of Credit Linked Subsidy Scheme CLSS under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (Urban).
Delhi govt to erect welcome gates at 12 border points
- The Delhi government has decided to erect ‘Welcome Gate’ at 12 border points of the national capital by next year.
- The welcome gates will be put up at Delhi’s main border points – Noida, Ghaziabad, Faridabad, Sonipat, Kharkhoda, Bahadurgarh, Badli, Gurugram, Kundli and Gazipur.
- The new welcome gates are expected to have an attractive look with colourful lights and an inscription reading ‘Welcome to Delhi’ on the top. The move is aimed at giving a pleasing look to the commuters entering the capital.
- The project will be executed by the Delhi Tourism and Transportation Development Corporation (DTTDC).
Tuticorin Airport to soon be the 5th International airport in Tamil Nadu
- Efforts are on to develop Thuthukkudi (Tuticorin) Airport as the fifth international airport in Tamil Nadu.
- Airport Director N Balasubramaniam revealed on December 31, 2018, that the airport is likely to be declared as an international airport within four years.
- As the first step, night landing facilities will commence from Thuthukudi by next May.
- International flights are already being operated from four airports of the state including Chennai, Coimbatore, Madurai, and Trichy.
Ujjwala Sanitary Napkin initiative launched by Pradhan
- The oil marketing companies have launched Ujjwala Sanitary Napkin Initiative, as part of their corporate social responsibility (CSR) in Odisha.
- According to the data from the National Family Health Survey-4, overall use of sanitary napkins in Odisha is 33.5 percent and only 42.8 percent of rural women between the age of 15 and 24 years use proper hygienic methods of protection during menstruation.
- Under this initiative, around 100 local manufacturing units will be set up by oil marketing companies at Common Service Centres (CSCs) across 93 blocks in all 30 districts of Odisha.
- Common Service Centres are physical facilities for delivering Government of India e-Services to rural and remote locations where availability of computers and Internet was negligible or mostly absent.
Rajasthan cabinet scraps education criteria for civic poll candidates
- The new government of Rajasthan has abolished the condition of a minimum educational qualification to contest local body elections.
- The cabinet also decided on holding the election of mayors and chairman’s in corporations through the direct system instead of the indirect methods introduced by the previous government.
- Previously candidates were required to have passed Class X for contesting municipal elections, Class VIII for contesting panchayat polls for the post of a sarpanch, and Class X for contesting Zila Parishad or Panchayat Samiti elections.
- Construction of toilets in their homes as mandatory for contesting polls to the Panchayati Raj institutions in the state
A commemorative stamp on Maharaja Suheldev released by Prime Minister
- PM Narendra Modi released a commemorative stamp on Maharaja Suheldev.
- He described Maharaja Suheldev as a brave warrior and a hero who inspires the people.
- Maharaja Suheldev is a semi-legendary king whose references are found somewhere between the boundary of fiction and history.
- The only surviving historical account of him can be traced to Mirat-i-Masudi, a 17th-century Persian-language historical romance.
- Maharaja Suheldev is said to have defeated and killed the Ghaznavid general Ghazi Saiyyad Salar Masud at Bahraich, in the early 11th century.
One District, One Product Scheme Initiated by Uttar Pradesh Government
- One District, One Product scheme initiated by Uttar Pradesh Government to encourage indigenous and specialized products and crafts of the state.
- The scheme aims to capitalize the rich heritage of the Uttar Pradesh by reviving them through modernization and publicisation.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 29th & 30th December
Cabinet Approves Amendment in POSCO Act, 2012
- The Union Cabinet approved amendments to the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012.
- The changes prescribe stringent punishment, including the death penalty for aggravated penetrative sexual assault of children.
- Hefty fine would be imposed for not deleting, not destroying child pornographic material or not reporting child pornography.
- Attempt to inject hormones in children to make them major has been made an aggravated offence under Section 9 of the POCSO Act.
- The POCSO Act, 2012 was enacted to Protect the Children from Offences of Sexual Assault, Sexual harassment and pornography with due regard for safeguarding the interest and well-being of children
6th International Rice Research Institute Inaugurated
- The Prime Minister inaugurated 6th International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), South Asia Regional Center (ISARC) to the nation.
- The Institute is built at the campus of National Seed Research and Training Center (NSRTC) in Varanasi.
- The One District, One Product Regional Summit was held at Deendayal Hastakala Sankul (Trade Facilitation Centre & Crafts Museum) in Varanasi.
- The first international centre in eastern India is expected to improve crop production, seed quality and the nutritional value of rice. It is expected to play a major role in harnessing and sustaining rice production in the region.
- The main aim is to double farmers’ income.
All vehicles to come fitted with high security number plates from April 1, 2019
- All motor vehicles will come fitted with tamper-proof high-security registration plates (HSRPs) from April 1st, 2019, to protect against counterfeiting.
- Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari said the proposal to amend the concerned rule in Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989 and revision of the HSRP Order, 2001 was placed in the public domain for soliciting objections/suggestions and was discussed in a meeting on June 5, 2018.
- An HSRP is a chromium-based hologram applied by hot stamping on the number plates both at the front and back beside laser-branding of a permanent identification number.
- Third registration mark refers to a chromium-based hologram sticker affixed on the inner side of the vehicles’ windshield which will have the details of registration.
Centre Declares Khalistan Liberation Force Banned Organisation
- The Union government declared the Khalistan Liberation Force (KLF) a banned organization.
- A Home Ministry order stated the decision was taken under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act 1967 for the outfit’s alleged involvement in the killing of innocent people and police officers and several bombings on civilian targets in India.
- KLF was founded in 1986 by Aroor Singh and Sukhvinder Singh Babbar with “the objective of establishing an independent state of Khalistan by the secession of the state of Punjab from the Republic of India through violent means”.
- It is a 40th Organization which is banned under the UAPA.
- The verdict has been given effect to owing to the efforts by several militant organizations for the revival of militancy in the state of Punjab.
- The complete ban on Khalistan Liberation Force(KLF) has been brought into effect because of its proven contribution towards the increment in the number of events for extortion, kidnappings, bank robberies and assassination attempts of significant Government functionaries.
Three islands in Andaman and Nicobar renamed after Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi will rename three islands of Andaman and Nicobar after Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose on December 30, 2018.
- These three islands are – Ross Island, Neil Island and Havelock Island.
- These islands were renamed during PM Modi’s visit to Port Blair to mark the 75th Anniversary of the hoisting of the National Flag at Port Blair by freedom fighter Subhash Chandra Bose.
- Bose had hoisted the flag at Port Blair on December 30, 1943, as he believed that Port Blair was the first territory to be freed from British rule.
- This was done after the Japanese captured that area during the time of the Second World War.
Nepal caps expenditure of its citizens in India-1 Lakh per Month
- In order to address the country’s current account deficit, Nepal imposed a monthly limit on the amount of Indian currency its citizen can spend in India while paying for goods and services.
- With the approval of new restrictions, a Nepali citizen would be unable to spend more than Rs.1 lakh per month while paying for goods and services in India.
- The policy which came into effect from 25th December 2018 will also be applicable to use of prepaid, credit and debit cards of Nepali banks for purchasing done in Indian Markets. However, the latest measure would exempt payment in hospitals and pharmacies in India.
- The decision was taken to deal with the growing problem of the current account deficit and the balance of payment crisis between India and Nepal.
- Nepal continues to deal with the after-effects of the demonetization by India.
- Nepal is yet holding a huge amount of Indian currency that has not been exchanged so far by Delhi, so the latest moves were also aimed at assuring the domestic market that Nepal would remain secure in case India repeated demonetization in the future.
- On 14th December 2018, Nepal government had formally banned the use of Indian currency notes of Rs 2,000, Rs 500 and Rs 200 denominations in Nepal.
Barack Obama named most admired man for the 11th year in a row
- Former President of the United States of America (USA), Barack Obama has been named as the most admired man by Americans.
- This is for the 11th year in a row according to a Gallup poll.
- Present President of USA, Donald Trump ranked 2nd for the fourth consecutive year.
- Former First Lady of USA Michelle Obama was also voted as the most admired women by American.
- Hillary Clinton missed the top of the list this year, ended her 17-year run as the most admired woman.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 28th December
Triple Talaq bill gets a nod by Lok Sabha
- The Lok Sabha has passed the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill by negating the amendments moved by some opposition members.
- The Bill makes all declarations of instant triple talaq void and illegal.
- It seeks to make the practice a punishable offence with imprisonment of up to three years.
- It has not been brought to target any religion but to give justice to women.
- It is a historic step ensuring equality and dignity for the Muslim women.
Indian Human Spaceflight Initiative
- Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on December 28, 2018, approves Indian Human Spaceflight Initiative.
- Called as the Gaganyaan Programme, first Indian Human Spaceflight Initiative of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
- The GSLV Mk-lll rocket will be used to carry the orbital module which will have necessary provisions for sustaining a 3-member crew for the duration of the mission.
- The Gaganyaan Programme is a national effort and will involve the participation of the Industry, Academia and National Agencies spread across the length and breadth of the country.
- The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will collaborate extensively with National agencies, laboratories, academia, and industry to accomplish the Gaganyaan Programme objectives.
- Two unmanned flights and one manned flight will be undertaken as part of Gaganyaan Programme.
- It is expected to generate employment and train human resources in advanced technologies.
- It will inspire a large number of young students to take up science and technology careers for national development.
All Indian airports to install body scanners
- From next year onward passengers won’t have to go through physical frisking at airports.
- All domestic airports will install full-body scanners.
- The technical specifications of these scanners will soon be announced by The Bureau of Civil Aviation and Security (BCAS) following which airports can install machines meeting norms.
- This technology is widely used abroad, especially in the US.
- This is expected to speed up the security check process for the Indian airports lacking adequate infrastructure and restrict the escalating manpower costs to provide security at the terminals.
- The full-body scanners to be used in all airports are called “millimeter wave” machines, which bounce electromagnetic waves off the traveler to provide an animated image where a suspicious item might be located.
Railways to grant fare concession to transgender senior citizens
- The Indian Railways announced on December 27, 2018, that it has decided to grant 40-per-cent concession in passenger fares to transgender senior citizens.
- The concession will be applicable to those of the third gender, who are aged 60 years or above. It will be available from January 1, 2019.
- The Indian Railways offers concessions on ticket prices to 53 different categories, ranging from 10-100 percent.
- Apart from these, senior citizens, who book their railway tickets online, now have the option to choose between 100-percent concession, 50-percent concession and no concession.
- Though a column for transgender (T) was introduced in the reservation form, the concession was not admissible to them.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 27th December
Andhra Pradesh gets new High Court
- Andhra Pradesh got its own High Court on December 26, 2018.
- It will start functioning from January 1, 2019.
- Ministry of Law and Justice notified the constitution of the High Court in Amaravati.
- Andhra Pradesh High Court will be the 25th High Court in the country.
- Hyderabad High Court has been functioning as the common high court for Telangana and Andhra Pradesh till now after bifurcation of undivided Andhra Pradesh.
- Telangana was carved out of the state in 2014, with Hyderabad as its capital.
Government reviews guidelines for FDI in E- commerce
- The government has reviewed guidelines for Foreign Direct Investment in E-commerce companies to protect the interests of domestic players.
- It has taken a host of steps and barred e-commerce companies from selling products of the companies in which they have a stake.
- It has also prohibited e-commerce companies from entering into an agreement for the exclusive sale of products.
- Cash back provided to buyers by group companies of marketplace entity shall be fair and non-discriminatory.
- E-commerce entities providing marketplace will not directly or indirectly influence the sale price of goods or services and shall maintain the level playing field.
- These decisions will come into effect from 1st of February, 2019.
RBI launches a survey to capture retail payment habits
- The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will capture the payment habits of individuals in six cities, including four metropolitan towns.
- For the purpose, the central bank has launched a ‘Survey on Retail Payment Habits of Individuals (SRPHi)’.
- the survey will cover a sample of 6,000 individuals from various socio-economic backgrounds across six cities including Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, and Guwahati.
- The survey seeks qualitative responses from individuals on their payment habits.
- The findings may provide some idea about awareness and usage habits of digital payment products.
- Sigma Research & Consulting Pvt Ltd has been engaged to conduct the fieldwork of the survey on behalf of the RBI.
- Those not approached by the agency can also participate in the survey by sending their responses in a prescribed format available on the RBI’s website.
16th Mumbai Marathon to be held on 20th Jan 2019
- The 16th Mumbai Marathon will be held on January 20 next year.
- Around 50,000 participants are expected to participate in the run.
- The Mumbai Marathon is also known as the Tata Mumbai Marathon.
- It is an annual international marathon held in Mumbai, India, on the third Sunday of January every year.
- It is the largest marathon in Asia as well as the largest mass participation sporting event on the continent.
- A marathon is an event where people from all walks of life participate including Bollywood celebrities, sports personalities, business tycoons and amateur athletes.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 26th December
Italy’s Mount Etna Volcano erupts
- Italy’s Mount Etna volcano erupted on 24th December 2018 resulting in more than 130 earthquakes of up to 4.3 in magnitude.
- The volcanic lava and ash spewed from a new fracture near its south-eastern crater for the first time in a decade and was visible for miles.
- Mount Etna is Europe’s highest and most active volcano outside the Caucasus. Mount Etna is an active stratovolcano on the east coast of Sicily, Italy.
Mohammed Rafi Awards conferred
- Mohammed Rafi Award instituted by the NGO Spandan Arts was bestowed upon late music composer Laxmikant Shantaram Kudalkar and playback singer Usha Timothy.
- The Mohammed Rafi Lifetime Achievement Award consisting of Rs 1 lakh and a trophy was conferred to Laxmikant Shantaram Kudalkar
Coast Guard deploys hovercrafts for enhanced security in Sir Creek
- Indian Coast Guards has deployed two new hovercrafts to enhance its surveillance capabilities and to protect against any filtration bids from Pakistan.
- The two new hovercrafts together with three interceptor vessels will be responsible for the round the clock surveillance in the contentious area around Sir Creek.
Bharat Ratna Atal Bihari Vajpayee International Schools for students in Rural Areas
- Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has launched the ‘Bharat Ratna Atal Bihari Vajpayee International Schools’ for students in rural areas on the occasion of 94th birth anniversary of the late prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
Sadaiv Atal dedicated to the Nation
- Sadaiv Atal, the Samadhi of Atal Bihari Vajpayee was dedicated to the Nation on the birth Anniversary of the former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
- The Samadhi has a central platform comprising of nine square blocks, capped with a Diya in the center. The number nine represents the navarasas, navaratras and navagrahas. The placement of the nine square blocks is in a circular lotus shaped pattern.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 25th December
India gets its longest rail-cum-road bridge at Bogibeel
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated India’s longest rail-cum-road bridge today.
- It is made over the Brahmaputra river at Bogibeel in Assam.
- It is 4.94-km-long double-decker bridge.
- The Prime Minister also travelled from Dibrugarh to Dhemaji through the new bridge. He also flagged off the first passenger train over the bridge.
- The Bogibeel Bridge will play a crucial role in defence movement along the India-China border in Arunachal Pradesh.
- The bridge, constructed at an estimated cost of around 5,900 crore rupees, has a serviceable period of around 120 years.
Special card for Kumbh Mela launched by PNB
- Punjab National Bank launched a special card called PNB Rupay card.
- It is in collaboration with Uttar Pradesh government for Kumbh Mela 2019.
- It is aimed to create a model for digitization at this edition of Kumbh Mela for convenient and hassle-free transactions.
- Around 12 crore devotees are participating in the mela.
- This product can be used even in absence of internet.
Lewis Hamilton awarded Drivers’ Driver of the Year
- Lewis Hamilton was awarded Drivers’ Driver of the Year on December 22.
- He claimed the 5th World Drivers’ Championship.
- After this, he became the 3rd man in history to secure the 5th world title.
- This was a part of the vote given by the F1 management for the first time among 17 of the 20 drivers participating in the event.
Christmas being celebrated today
- Christmas, marking the birth of Jesus Christ, is being celebrated across the globe today.
- Thousands of pilgrims flocked to Bethlehem, the birth place of Lord Christ, for the celebrations.
- Pope Francis led a service in St Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican for the traditional Christmas Eve Mass.
- Christmas being celebrated today across the globe with fervour & gaiety.
World’s biggest sand Santa Claus made at Odisha
- Sudarshan Patnaik, a renowned sand artist, has created ‘world’s biggest’ sand Santa Claus face on Puri beach in Odisha.
- 25 feet high and 50 feet wide sand sculpture has secured a place in the Limca Book of World Record.
- Sudarsan Pattnaik is an Indian sand artist from Odisha.
- He was awarded the Padma Shri by Government of India in 2014.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 24th December
PM Modi releases commemorative coin of Rs 100 coin
- In the honour of former Prime Minister and Bharat Ratna Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the PM Narendra Modi releases Rs 100 coin today.
- Atal Bihari Vajpayee was away from public life for nearly a decade and was a stalwart and respected across all sections of society.
National Consumer Day being observed on December 24
- The objective is to highlight the importance of the consumer movement and the need to make every consumer more aware of their rights and responsibilities.
- The theme this year is “Timely Disposal of Consumer Complaints”.
- On this day the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 was enacted.
- The Act aims to provide consumers with effective safeguards against different types of exploitation, such as defective goods, deficiency in services and unfair trade practices.
- The Consumer Protection Bill was passed on the 20th of this month. The bill seeks to establish Consumer Disputes Redressal Commissions at District, State and National level.
55th anniversary of Sashastra Seema Bal Celebrated
- The 55th anniversary of Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) was held in New Delhi on 24/12/18.
- Union Minister of State for Home Affairs, Kiren Rijiju, was the chief guest at the event and raised the parade with delegates from Nepal and Bhutan on the occasion.
- In addition to border guarding duty, Sashastra Seema Bal is also playing important role in activities such as civic action, perception management and skill development programmes.
- Sashastra Seema Bal has given a major contribution in disaster management operations with 2 battalions serving in National Disaster Response Force (NDRF).
Information Fusion Centre – Indian Ocean Region (IFC-IOR) inaugurated in Gurugram
- The Defence Minister of India formally inaugurated the Information Fusion Centre – Indian Ocean Region (IFC-IOR) Indian at the Information Management and Analysis Centre (IMAC) in Gurugram on 22nd December 2018.
- The IFC for Indian Ocean Region has the primary objective of jointly monitoring the vast Indian Ocean Reg. The Information Management and Analysis Centre (IMAC) in Gurugram was sanctioned in March 2012 and became operational in November 2014.
- Nationally, the IFC-IOR at the IMAC obtains primary inputs from India’s coastal radar network. Internationally, India has White Shipping Agreements with 36 countries and three multinational agencies which provide details of all commercial ships passing through the ports in their region.
Gitega named as the new capital of Burundi
- Burundi is a resource-poor, underdeveloped landlocked African country which shares its borders with Rwanda in the north, Tanzania in the east and south, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo in the west. Burundi gained freedom from colonial rule in 1962.
- The government of Burundi has declared Gitega as the country’s new political capital on 22nd December 2018.
- Bujumbura, the previous capital of Burundi, will serve as the economic capital of the country.
Vedangi Kulkarni: Indian woman becomes the fastest Asian to cycle the Globe
- A 20-year-old Pune woman Vedangi Kulkarni has become the fastest Asian to cycle the globe.
- She has completed the 29,000 km distance required to qualify as bicycling across the globe.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 22nd & 23rd December
National Mathematics Day celebrated on 22nd December
- Every year, the country celebrates National Mathematics Day on December 22.
- This is to honour the birth anniversary of Mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan. In his memory, the Government of India marked 2012, the 125th year of his birth, as National Mathematics Year and declared 22nd December as annual National Mathematics Day.
- Srinivasa Ramanujan FRS was an Indian mathematician who lived during the British Rule in India.
India, Japan Sign Exchange of Notes and Loan Agreements
- India and Japan have signed Exchange of Notes and Loan Agreements on Japan’s Official Development Assistance Loan to India.
- The total amount is Yen 105.497 billion (approximately Rs 6668.46 crore) for three projects. First project is Chennai Metro Project (Phase 2) for JPY 75.519 billion.The Chennai Metro Project aims to build Mass Rapid Transit System in order to meet the growing traffic demands.
- Second project is Program for Japan-India Cooperative Actions towards sustainable Development goals in India for JPY 15 Billion. Program for The Japan India Cooperative Action towards sustainable development goals(SDG) in India aims to contribute to the promotion of SDGs in India and it will support India in achieving SDGs by 2030.
- Third project is Project for Dairy Development for JPY 14.978 billion.
Union Minister inaugurates Atal Complex for ITCOocean
- Atal Complex for the International Training Centre for Operational Oceanography (ITCOocean) was inaugurated at the INCOIS campus in Hyderabad. It was done by Union Earth Sciences, Environment and Forests Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan.
- India is playing a key role in the efforts that are being made to address global environmental concerns. The ITCOocean is a Category 2 centre under UNESCO for capacity building and training activities in operational oceanography.
- The International Training Centre for Operational Oceanography (ITCOocean) is aimed at promoting the development and optimization of scientific base, technology and information system for operational oceanography at national, regional and global scales.
- The facility can help in promoting excellence in integrated multidisciplinary oceanography on a global scale.
Efficiency gap in India’s Power sector costs 4% of GDP says World Bank
- India has made great strides in expanding access to electricity in recent years.
- More than 130 million people joined the power grid since 2013. 24 hours power supply would increase rural households income by $9.4 billion and eliminate $22.7 billion of business losses.
- Cheap electricity for agriculture made India the world’s largest user of groundwater – a non-renewable resource – with consumption increasing 700% from 1950 to 2014.
- In India, about 178 million people still lacked access to power in 2017.
Haryana CM inaugurates World Herbal Forest Project in Morni Hill
- Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar inaugurated the World Herbal Forest Project. This is a collaboration of Patanjali and Haryana Government, at Morni Hill, near Chandigarh.
- The project covers over 52,000 acres of land in Morni Hills and is aimed at developing a forest of medicinal plants which will provide a huge boost to the Ayurvedic industry across the country.
- About 25 different varieties of plants found in the country will be housed in this forest. 50,000 plants each of 20 medicinal varieties are being sown in the first phase of the project.
PM Modi to Inaugurate IIT Bhubaneshwar’s Campus today
- IIT Bhubaneshwar’s new campus is set to be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 24 December, during his Odisha visit. It started functioning from the current campus in 2015 and became fully functional with shifting its central administration in 2018.
- Currently, it has seven academic schools with around 1,765 students. The institute running since 2008, now has five established centres in Augmented and Virtual reality, Energy Materials, Design Innovation, Bay of Bengal Coastal Observatory and Probiotics.
India successfully test-fires Agni-IV ballistic missile
- India successfully test-fired its nuclear-capable long-range Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile Agni-IV. It has a strike range of 4,000 km.
- The test was part of a user trial by the Army. The strategic surface-to-surface missile was flight tested from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Dr Abdul Kalam Island off Odisha coast.
- Agni-IV missile is equipped with advanced Avionics, 5th generation on Board Computer and distributed architecture. It has the latest features to correct and guide itself for in-flight disturbances. Ballistic missiles like Agni-I, II and III and Prithvi have already been inducted in the arsenal of the armed forces.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 21st December
US Federal Reserve raised lending rates to 2.5 per cent
- Key interest rates have been raised by the US Federal Reserve from 2.25 per cent to 2.5 per cent.
- This is the 4th raise in the Federal Reserve’s rates this year and has reached the highest point since 2008.
- The main implication of the raising of the interest rates would be an increase in the borrowing costs for individuals and businesses.
- Presently, the US economy is showing strength. The unemployment rate has gone down to 3.7 per cent which is a 49-year low.
Lok Sabha passed the Consumer Protection Bill, 2018
- Consumer Protection Bill, 2018 has been passed by Lok Sabha on 20th December 2018, which will replace the Consumer Protection Act, 1986.
- The purpose of the bill is to enforce consumer rights and to offer a mechanism for complaint redressal related to the deficiencies in goods and services.
- The Consumer Disputes Redressal Commissions will be set up at District, State and National levels as per the bill passed.
Harsh Vardhan Shringla appointed as India’s Ambassador to the US
- Harsh Vardhan Shringla has been appointed as the Ambassador of India to the USA on 20th December 2018.
- Currently, Mr Shringla is serving as the High Commissioner to the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.
- He is a 1984-batch Indian Foreign Service diplomat.
The government launched ‘Asiatic Lion Conservation Project’
- Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change(MoEFCC) has launched ‘Asiatic Lion Conservation Project.’
- The main purpose of this project is to work for the conservation of the world’s last ranging free Asiatic Lion population and the ecosystem associated with it.
- The total budget of the “Asiatic Lion Conservation Project” for 3 years stands at about Rs. 9784 lakh.
- The project will be funded under the ‘Development of Wildlife Habitat (CSS-DWH)’ scheme which is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme.
Surrogacy Bill passed in Lok Sabha
- Lok Sabha has passed the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2016 which is aimed at prohibiting commercial surrogacy and unethical practices relating to it.
- The Bill seeks to completely ban commercial surrogacy. The offences are treated seriously by the Bill as it prescribes the punishment of imprisonment for a minimum term of ten years and with fine which may extend up to ten years.
- The Bill permits only altruistic surrogacy, which is surrogacy services given by a person who is genetically related to either of the intending parents, without any monetary consideration.
- Only a woman who is genetically related to the intending couple can be a surrogate mother. The Bill seeks to limit surrogacy services only to legally married Indian couple, who are married for a period of at least 5 years.
- This means foreigners, same-sex couples and live-in partners cannot go for surrogacy.
- The couple has to be clinically certified as infertile in order to legally avail surrogacy services. The couple must be between the age of 23-50 years and 26-55 years for female and male, respectively. The intending couple should not have had any surviving child biologically or through adoption or through surrogacy earlier. However, if the surviving child is medically certified to be mentally or physically challenged, or as having life-threatening diseases, the couple can avail surrogacy services.
Mamata Banerjee awarded the Skoch CM of the Year Award
- The Chief Minister of West Bengal has been awarded the Skoch Chief Minister of the Year Award for the year 2017.
- The award was given to Mamta Banerjee recognising her contribution in the overall development of West Bengal as West Bengal emerged as the best-performing state in the field of Governance.
- West Bengal has won 31 Skoch Awards this year for its performance in different fields and for executing unique projects.
- According to Skoch Group, Mamata Banerjee was chosen for the prestigious award keeping in mind the West Bengal ’s performance in governance, culture, finance, urban and rural development.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 20th December
President’s rule comes into effect in Jammu & Kashmir
- President’s rule comes into effect in the state of Jammu and Kashmir from 20th December 2018.
- Governor’s rule in the state completed its six months hence President’s rule is applied.
- It implies that now all the policy decisions related to Jammu and Kashmir will be taken by the Union Cabinet.
- Under Article 356 of the Indian Constitution, the Union government can take over the affairs of the state government when state government is unable to function according to the constitutional provisions. This is called as President’s rule in the state.
ISRO successfully launches GSAT-7A satellite
- The Indian space research Organisation ISRO successfully launched geostationary communication satellite GSAT-7A onboard Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle GSLV-F11.
- The exclusively advanced communication satellite separated from the rocket after 19 minutes of the launch.
- GSAT 7A is the heaviest satellite carried by indigenous cryogenic stage.
- The Indian Space Research Organisation is the space agency of the Government of India headquartered in the city of Bengaluru.
- It was formed in 1969.
National Cancer Institute (NCI) opened in Jhajjar
- India’s largest Cancer Institute, National Cancer Institute (NCI), has opened on 18th December 2018 in Jhajjar, Haryana for public services.
- The National Cancer Institute will be formally inaugurated in January 2019.
- The National Cancer Institute has been established under a project of Delhi’s All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS).
- The National Cancer Institute (NCI) will act as the nodal institution for all cancer-related activities in India.
- It will be linked to regional cancer centres and other cancer institutes of India.
- The NCI will have equipment with the advanced and latest technology to learn more about cancer.
- NCI will assist other regional cancer centres in research activities.
India and S Korea to raise bilateral trade to 50 billion dollars by 2030
- India reiterated its continued support to usher in a new era of peace and stability in the Korean Peninsula.
- India and South Korea also shared the view that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations is a global scourge and resolved to combat it through coordinated regional and global efforts.
- India sees the Republic of Korea as an indispensable partner in its Act East policy and in its vision of the Indo-Pacific.
- Both the countries agreed to raise the quantum of the bilateral trade to 50 billion dollars by the year 2030.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 19th December
Nageswara Rao appointed CBI additional director
- M Nageswara Rao, who is holding the post of interim CBI Director, was promoted to the rank of an additional director by the government on December 18, 2018.
- A 1986-batch IPS officer from the Odisha cadre, Rao’s name was cleared by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet. He had joined the CBI as a joint director in 2016.
- The Supreme Court has asked Rao not to take any policy decisions until it hears the petition related to the feud between the Director CBI Alok Verma and Special Director Rakesh Asthana.
Assam government approved Rs 600 crore farm loan waiver
- The Assam government will write off 25 per cent loan of farmers up to a maximum of Rs 25,000 of all farm debts.
- The waiver will be for all the loans taken through Kisan Credit Card (KCC) and from PSU banks.
- The cabinet also approved subsidy up to Rs 10,000 to incentivise farmers if they take a loan from KCC.
- Assam is the third state to waive farm loans in the last few days.
Cabinet approves Two new AIIMS in Tamil Nadu and Telangana
- The Union Cabinet approved the establishment of two new All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Tamil Nadu and Telangana.
- Tamil Nadu’s AIIMS will be set at Madurai and Telangana’s will be set at Bibinagar at the cost of ₹1,264 crore and ₹1,028 crore respectively.
- Each will add 100 Undergraduate (MBBS) seats and 60 B.Sc (Nursing) seats.
- The two new institutes will be set up under the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY).
- Construction of new AIIMS is fully funded by the central government.
Thirty Seventh Senior National Rowing Championship Begins in Pune
- The 37th Senior National Rowing Championship began in the Army Rowing Node in Pune.
- Around 500 rowers and coaches from various rowing associations across the country are taking part in the Championship.
- The Rowers for the World Championships-2019 will be selected from this event.
India to host meeting of with WTO
- India will host a meeting of World Trade Organisation members in February next year.
- This is to muster support for food security and other issues.
- The proposed meeting would be in the backdrop of developed nations forming groupings to prepare the ground for pushing investment facilitation, preparing rules for e-commerce, promoting gender equality and reducing subsidy on fisheries with a view to curbing illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing.
- The meeting will have about 40 WTO members.
India observed Minorities Rights Day 18th December 2018
- In order to promote the rights of Minority communities in India every year, 18 December is observed as Minorities Rights Day
- Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Buddhists, Zoroastrians (Parsis) and Jains are considered as minorities in India
- J & K, Punjab, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Lakshadweep are the only states where any notified minority is in majority.
- In 1992 National Commission for Minorities Act has also been set up under 1992.
India ranked 108th in WEF’s Gender Gap Index…
- India stands at 108th position in World Economic Forum Gender Gap Index 2018.
- The Global Gender Gap Index is an index that measures gender equality across four key pillars which are an economic opportunity, political empowerment, educational attainment, and health and survival.
- Iceland has been on the first position from last 10 years.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 18th December
International Migrants Day 2018 celebrated on 18th December
- The International Migrants Day 2018 was celebrated on 18th December 2018 all over the world.
- It is celebrated on 18th Dec in accordance with the Resolution 55/93 of the United Nations General Assembly(UNGA). It was adopted by UN on 4th December 2000.
- The theme of International Migrants Day 2018 was “Migration with Dignity”.
- The reason for choosing this theme is that around 3,400 migrants and refugees died worldwide in 2018.
Madhavi Divan joins as the new Additional Solicitor General
- Advocate Madhavi Goradia Divan has been appointed as the Additional Solicitor General (ASG) in the government of India.
- Her term in this position will be till 30th June 2020. She will appear in Supreme Court on behalf of GoI ( Government of India). She is the third woman to hold the post of ASG. Advocate Indira Jaising was the first woman in India to become ASG.
Kaiga Atomic Power Station creates history for continuous operation for 941 days
- The Kaiga Atomic Power Station, Karnataka has created a new world record, with one of its units functioning continuously without any interruption for more than two and a half years.
- Earlier Unit 2 of Heysham of the United Kingdom had this record. It operated without any interruption for 940 days.
- It is the third largest nuclear power plant in India. Tarapur (1400 MW) of Maharashtra is the largest and Rawatbhata (1180 MW) of Rajasthan is the second.
Tamil Nadu fishermen get NavIC-powered ISRO Gadgets
- The Tamil Nadu government has distributed 200 NavIC- powered satellite-enabled communication devices developed by ISRO to 80 fishing boat groups in Tamil Nadu.
- These devices will help the Tamil Nadu fishermen to get cyclone and weather updates on a real-time basis
- The alerts will be in the Tamil language so that the fisherman find it easy to understand and are the size of a soap box
- Bluetooth enabled and the alerts received can be read on the NavIC(Navigation with Indian Constellation) which can be downloaded on an android phone.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 17th December
India Announces $1.4 billion Package for the 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.
Nepal government banned all Indian currency notes above Rs 100
- The Nepal government has banned the validity of Indian currency notes of Rs 2,000, Rs 500 and Rs 200 denominations in the country.
- India is currently Nepal’s largest trade partner, and their decision to ban all Indian currencies above Rs 100 denomination would also affect Nepalese people and business for their transactions.
- The Indian government had introduced new currency notes of Rs 2,000, Rs 500 and Rs 200 after the demonetisation of old notes in 2016.
- However, the citizens of Nepal have been using the new Indian currency in their country for nearly two years now.
Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) extended to all poor households
- The central Government has decided to extend the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) to all poor households in the country.
- Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) is the government’s flagship programme to provide free cooking gas (LPG) connections. The PMUY scheme targets to reach out to provide free LPG connections to 80 million families by 2020.
- With the expansion of the PMUY scheme, all the poor households can avail the benefit from PMUY and it will not be mandatory to be part of the Socio-Economic Caste Census (SECC) list or the seven identified categories under the programme to be eligible for the scheme.
- Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) was launched in May 2016.
NITI Aayog organised Women Transforming India Awards 2018
- NITI Aayog is organising the Third Edition of the Women Transforming India Awards 2018 and is launching the upgraded portal of the Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP) on Sunday, December 16, 2018.
- The primary objective of Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP) is to promote and support both established and aspiring Indian women entrepreneurs. This platform has been set up by NITI Aayog.
- The Women Entrepreneurship Platform seeks to transform the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the country and shall be a one-stop resource centre for future and budding women entrepreneurs. It seeks to act as a medium for various stakeholders in the economy to come together and offer integrated services such as Incubator Support, Mentorship, Funding venues, Compliance etc.
- The National Institution for Transforming India, also called NITI Aayog, was formed via a resolution of the Union Cabinet on January 1, 2015. NITI Aayog is the premier policy ‘Think Tank’ of the Government of India, providing both directional and policy inputs. While designing strategic and long term policies and programmes for the Government of India, NITI Aayog also provides relevant technical advice to the Centre and States.
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.
- Kaiga Generating Station is a nuclear power generating station situated at Kaiga, near the river Kali, in Uttar Kannada district of Karnataka.
- The plant has been in operation since March 2000.
Government notifies Flight and Maritime Connectivity Rules
- On 14th December 2018, Government notified rules for in-flight calls, internet access through mobile phones known as Flight and Maritime Connectivity Rules, 2018, thereby allowing Indian & foreign airlines and shipping companies operating in the country to provide in-flight and maritime voice & data services in partnership with a valid Indian telecom licence holder.
- The in-flight and maritime connectivity (IFMC) can be provided using telecom networks on the ground as well as using satellites. A valid telecom licence holder in India can provide the service through domestic and foreign satellites which have the permission of the Department of Space to do so.
- The IFMC services will be activated once the aircraft attains a minimum height of 3,000 metres in Indian airspace to avoid interference with terrestrial mobile networks.
- The IFMC licences will be granted against an annual fee of Re 1 for a period of 10 years and the permit holder will have to pay licence fees and spectrum charges based on revenue earned from providing services.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 15th & 16th December
Shree Saini bagged the Miss India Worldwide, 2018
- Indian-American Shree Saini has bagged the Miss India Worldwide 2018 title at a pageant held in the Fords City of New Jersey.
- It was the 27th edition of this annual global pageant for people of Indian origin.
- It is said to be the oldest and largest event for the Indian Diaspora community.
- It draws contestants from India and from among members of the Indian Diaspora residing in different countries.
IRIGC-MTC held in New Delhi
- 18th Military Technical Cooperation (IRIGC-MTC) was held in New Delhi.
- In the meeting, a wide range of issues was discussed regarding defence equipment, industry and technological cooperation between India and Russia.
Vijay Diwas celebrated on 16th December
- Vijay Diwas was celebrated on 16th December 2018 embarking the 47th anniversary of its victory over Pakistan in the 1971 war.
- Nirmala Sitharaman Defence Minister along with the heads of the three armed forces paid tributes to the martyrs at Amar Jawan Jyoti at the India Gate in New Delhi.
- The same day in 1971, the chief of the Pakistani forces along with 93,000 troops, surrendered to the allied forces consists of Indian Army and Mukti Bahini in Dhaka after they got defeated in the war.
- On the anniversary of Vijay Divas, respect and tributes are paid to the martyrs who laid down their lives for their country.
Brief about Ranil Wickremesinghe
Ranil Wickremesinghe belongs to United National party and has served as its leader since 1994. He got elected as Member of Parliament (MP) for the first time in 1977 from Colombo District. He was appointed as the Deputy Ministry of Foreign Affairs and has also been the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka from 1993 to 1994 and 2001 to 2004.
Ranil Wickremesinghe again appointed as Prime Minister of Sri Lanka
- Ranil Wickremesinghe was once again sworn in as the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka on 16th December 2018.
- Mr Ranil Wickremsing stepped down as Prime minister of Sri Lanka on 26th October 2018.
- Mahinda Rajapaksa was elected in place of Mr Wickremsing but has to step down as he failed to prove majority in Sri Lanka Parliament.
Jammu and Kashmir becomes the first state to have a law banning sexual exploitation of women
- On 14th December 2018, Jammu and Kashmir became the first state in the country to enact a law banning sexual exploitation of women “by those in positions of authority, having a fiduciary relationship or a public servant”.
- The decision in this regard was taken by Jammu and Kashmir Administrative Council (SAC) headed by Governor Satya Pal Malik by approving the Prevention of Corruption (Amendment) Bill, 2018, and the Jammu and Kashmir Criminal Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2018.
- The Jammu and Kashmir Criminal Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2018 seeks to amend the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC)-a criminal code, whereby specific offence under section 354 E is being inserted to provide for the offence of ‘Sextortion‘.
- ‘Sextortion’ is a physical or non-physical form to extort sexual favours. People entrusted with power use ‘sextortion’ in a form of ‘corruption’.
- Prevention of Corruption Act was amended to cover the definition of misconduct and to provide that demand for sexual favours would also constitute misconduct within the meaning of Section 5 of the act.
- Anyone found guilty of sextortion (“non-bailable” and “not compoundable” offence) will be punished with a monetary fine and a minimum jail sentence of three years, which may extend to five years.
PV Sindhu becomes first Indian to lift Badminton World Federation World Tour Finals title
- Ace Indian shuttler P V Sindhu lifted the prestigious season-ending World Tour Finals trophy at Guangzhou, China.
- The Olympic silver medallist defeated Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara 21-19, 21-17 in the summit clash.
- Sindhu accomplished the feat after losing seven successive summit clashes.
- She had also won silvers at the Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and World Championships this year.
India’s IDRSS to be satellite communication hub in the sky
- As part of its proposed manned space mission, India will launch the Indian Data Relay Satellite System (IDRSS).
- This is to improve data relay and communication links with its remote sensing/earth observation satellites.
- The two-satellite IDRSS will maintain a continuous communication link with India’s remote sensing/earth observation satellites and also with the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark III (GSLV Mk III).
- These Satellites would carry three Indian astronauts to space in 2022.
- ISRO is planning to launch two satellites under IDRSS. The first one is expected to be launched in 2019.
India’s 1st Private UAV Factory Comes Up in Hyderabad
- India’ first private sector unit for manufacturing unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) opened at Adani Aerospace Park in Hyderabad.
- Built by the Adani Group and Israel-based Elbit Systems, the 50,000 square feet facility will develop Hermes 900 medium altitude long-endurance UAVs for the Indian and global markets.
- The facility also houses advanced composites and high precision machining capabilities.
- An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), commonly known as a drone, is an aircraft without a human pilot aboard.
- UAVs are a component of an unmanned aircraft system (UAS); which include a UAV, a ground-based controller, and a system of communications between the two.
- The flight of UAVs may operate with various degrees of autonomy: either under remote control by a human operator or autonomously by onboard computers.
Amitav Ghosh wins the Jnanpith Award
- The Bharatiya Jnanpith announced that Amitav Ghosh, an eminent novelist, has been chosen for this year’s Jnanpith Award.
- The announcement was made on 15th December 2018.
- The award is given to an author for outstanding contribution towards literature.
- Mr.Ghosh’s novels include Shadow Lines, The Glass Palace, The Hungry Tide, and the Ibis trilogy– Sea of Poppies, River of Smoke, and Flood of Fire- discussing the opium trade between India and China run by the East India Company.
ECO Niwas Samhita 2018 Launched By Power Ministry
- Ministry of Power has launched the ECO Niwas Samhita 2018, an Energy Conservation Building Code for Residential Buildings (ECBC-R).
- The Code was launched on the occasion of National Energy Conservation Day 2018 (14th December) in the presence of Chief Guest Smt. Sumitra Mahajan, Hon’ble Speaker, Lok Sabha.
- It aims to benefit the occupants and the environment by promoting energy efficiency in the design and construction of homes, apartments and townships.
- The implementation of this Code will give a fillip to energy efficiency in the residential sector.
- This Code has been prepared after extensive consultations with all stakeholders, consisting of architects & experts including building material suppliers and developers.
- The parameters listed in the Code have been developed based on a large number of parameters using climate and energy related data.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 14th December
Home Ministry launches Twitter account to spread awareness about cybercrimes
- Home Ministry has launched a Twitter account to spread awareness about cybercrimes and normal precautions to be taken.
- The Twitter handles – @CyberDost – is aimed at enhancing people’s basic knowledge about cybercrimes and precautions to be taken for prevention.
- Home Ministry said in the press release that the government is committed to creating an ecosystem to prevent and control cyber crimes to mitigate the possibility of disruption in normal business activities or losses due to cybercrimes.
- With enhanced use of technology for day to day activities, the possibility of cyber-crimes is also increasing. Capacity building and public awareness are critical components for obviating impact of cybercrimes and creating a suitable climate for trust-based transactions.
Delhi HC Bans Online Sale of Medicines Across India
- The Delhi High Court ordered a ban on the sale of online medicines by the e-pharmacists across the country.
- The court directed both Central and state government to ensure immediate implementation of the order.
- The HC bench comprising Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice V K Rao passed the judgment while hearing a PIL filed by Delhi-based dermatologist Zaheer Ahmed who complained that lakhs of medicines were being sold on the internet every day without much regulation, posing a huge risk to patients and doctors alike.
- To regulate the sale of medicines online, the government had also come out with some draft rules. The draft norms stipulate that no person will distribute or sell, stock, exhibit or offer for sale of drugs through the e-pharmacy portal unless they are officially registered.
CAG Rajiv Mehrishi appointed as Vice-Chair of UN Panel of Auditors
- The United Nations Panel of Auditors consists of External Auditors of the United Nations and its agencies.
- Comptroller and Auditor General Rajiv Mehrishi has become the Vice-Chair of the UN Panel of Auditors.
- Presently, the panel consists of 11 countries — India, Germany, Chile, Canada, France, Italy, Philippines, Ghana, Indonesia, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.
- Currently, the panel is chaired by the Comptroller and Auditor General of the UK.
- The panel also unanimously elected the Comptroller and Auditor General of India as the Vice Chair of the panel for the year 2019
- The United Nations Panel of External Auditors is a unique forum for the exchange of information and methodologies to further develop and improve the value and quality of the external assurance process.
Signs of water found on Asteroid Bennu
- In the Fascinating discovery by NASA spacecraft signs of Water is found on Asteroid Bennu.
- It is discovered by ASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft.
- Evidence of water is found on a relatively nearby skyscraper-sized asteroid, Bennu, a rocky acorn-shaped object that may hold clues to the origins of life on Earth
- OSIRIS-REx, which flew last week within a scant 12 miles (19 km) of the asteroid Bennu, some 1.4 million miles (2.25 million km) from Earth, found traces of hydrogen and oxygen molecules – part of the recipe for water and thus the potential for life – embedded in the asteroid’s rocky surface.
- Bennu is near-Earth carbonaceous asteroid about the size of a small mountain in the Apollo group. It was discovered in September 1999 by the LINEAR Project.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 13th December
RBI fined Indian Bank Rs 1 crore for the cyber security violation
- The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) imposed a fine of ₹ 1 crore on Indian Bank for violating cyber security norms for breaking of Circular on Cyber Security Framework in banks.
- This action is based on deficiencies in regulatory compliance and is not intended to pronounce upon the validity of any transaction or agreement entered into by the bank with its customers.
- The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is India’s central banking institution, which controls the issuance and supply of the Indian rupee.
- The RBI plays an important part in the Development Strategy of the Government of India.
- The general superintendence and direction of the RBI is entrusted with the 21-member central board of directors: the governor; four deputy governors; two finance ministry representatives (usually the Economic Affairs Secretary and the Financial Services Secretary); ten government-nominated directors to represent important elements of India’s economy; and four directors to represent local boards headquartered at Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and the capital New Delhi.
Navy inducts deep submergence rescue vehicle
- The Indian Navy on December 12, 2018, inducted the ‘Deep Submergence Rescue Vehicle’ into service at the Western Naval Command here.
- The induction of the vehicle has put the Indian Navy into a small league of world navies that have an integral submarine rescue capability.
- The navy had successfully concluded maiden trials of the Deep Submergence Rescue Vehicle (DSRV) on October 15. The vehicle can rescue as many as 14 people in one dive.
- During the trials, the DSRV also dived successfully up to 666 metres, which is a record for deepest submergence by a ‘manned vessel’ in Indian waters.
Shaktikanta Das appointed as the new RBI Governor
- Former economic affairs secretary Shaktikanta Das was named the 25th governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI)
- The appointment will be for three years. He will first have to work on normalising the relationship between the central bank and the government that had turned frosty in the past few months as the two differed on many issues.
- Das last served as secretary of the department of economic affairs, which means he has invaluable insight into what the government requires.
- The Reserve Bank of India is responsible for maintaining the financial stability in an economy since the governor of RBI is the head of the most prestigious financial institution, he plays a major role in formulating the policies of RBI.
- Apart from formulating policies, the governor of the RBI also is responsible for issuing licenses to open new private and foreign banks.
Ex-SBI Chief Arundhati Bhattacharya appointed as SWIFT India Chairman
- Arundhati Bhattacharya will be seen replacing Mavila Vishwanathan Nair, the present Chairman of The Indian arm of SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) SWIFT India Domestic Services, whose term is going to end after five years.
- SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) India is a joint venture of top Indian public and private sector banks.
- Bhattacharya joined SBI in 1977 as a probationary officer and went on to become the first woman to head India’s largest lender as Chairman in 2013.
- SWIFT India is a financial messaging services provider formed by SWIFT SCRL and Indian banks, for the domestic Indian financial community and by the community to solve big, common problems.
PM Narendra Modi Inaugurates 4th Partners’ Forum
- Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated the fourth Partners’ Forum.
- The Government of India, in association with the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH), is hosting a two-day international conference on 12th and 13th December.
- It will bring together about 1500 participants from across 85 countries to improve the health and well-being of women, children and adolescents.
- The invited countries have been selected from across all regions and income levels and include countries that are currently chairing key global and regional bodies like G7, G20, BRICS, etc.
- It aims at sustaining global momentum for issues related to the health of women, children and adolescents. The fourth Partners’ Forum gives an opportunity for stakeholders to discuss issues related to maternal and child health.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 12th December
11 December observed as International Mountain Day
- The United Nations General Assembly has designated 11 December as “International Mountain Day”.
- It has been observed every year to create awareness about the importance of mountains to life, to highlight the opportunities and constraints in mountain development and to build alliances that will bring positive change to mountain peoples and environments around the world.
- #MountainsMatter is the theme chosen for this year’s celebration of International Mountain Day. International Mountain Day 2018 will be an occasion to create a large social movement that can bring mountain issues on the tables of politicians.
Economist Surjit S Bhalla resigns as Member of the Economic Advisory Council
- Economist Surjit S Bhalla resigned from his position as the part-time Member of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
- The Economic Advisory Council is headed by NITI Aayog member Bibek Debroy.
- Other part-time members on the Council include economists Rathin Roy, Ashima Goyal and former bureaucrat Ratan Watal.
- Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister (PMEAC) is a non-constitutional, non-permanent and independent body constituted to give economic advice to the Government of India, specifically the Prime Minister
- It advises the Prime Minister on economic issues like inflation, microfinance, and industrial output.
Kanimozhi to receive Best Woman Parliamentarian Award
- DMK MP Kanimozhi has been selected for the Best Woman Parliamentarian.
- Vice President Venkaiah Naidu will confer the award on Kanimozhi in the first week of January in the Central Hall of Parliament.
- The Outstanding Parliamentarian Award is an award given by the Indian Parliamentary Group to an outstanding sitting Member of the Indian Parliament for overall contribution in the Indian Parliament. It was instituted in 1992.
RBI planning to introduce live video KYC for customer verification
- The Reserve Bank of India may reportedly introduce new modes of customer e-verification, including live video, in financial institutions.
- This comes after Supreme Court struck down Section 57 of Aadhaar Act in September, thereby nullifying biometric e-KYC.
- RBI may introduce a digital method that would use XML internet format to extract limited information on customers from the Aadhaar database.
- Know your customer (‘KYC’) is the process of a business identifying and verifying the identity of its clients.
- The term is also used to refer to the bank and anti-money laundering regulations which govern these activities.
- It is a risk management tool that allows financial institutions to take informed decisions in their lending and investment policies.
- KYC is a part of the CDD (Customer Due Diligence) and EDD (Enhanced Due Diligence) measures required by most financial institutions.
Shi Yomi becomes the 23rd district of Arunachal Pradesh
- The number of districts in Arunachal Pradesh increased to 23 with the formal inauguration of Shi Yomi district by Chief Minister Pema Khandu in presence of Union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju.
- It was carved out of the West Siang district.
- Two more districts would be formally inaugurated in the state within this week taking the total to 25.
- The state Assembly on August 29 this year passed a bill for the creation of three new districts – Pakke-Kesang, Lepa Rada and Shi Yomi – in the state.
- The Pakke-Kessang district was carved out of East Kameng district with five administrative units namely Pakke-Kessang, Seijosa, Pijiriang, Passa Valley and Dissing Passo with district headquarters at Lemmi.
- Lepa Rada was created by bifurcating the Lower Siang district with headquarters at Basar with four administrative units – Tirbin, Basar, Daring and Sago.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 11th December
Former Indian diplomat Preeti Saran elected to UN’s Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
- A former senior Indian diplomat, Preeti Saran was elected unopposed to an Asia Pacific seat on the United Nation’s Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR).
- The UN’s Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) elected Saran to the 18-member committee ‘CESCR’ for a four-year term beginning on January 1, 2019.
- Saran will begin her term at CESCR after another former Indian diplomat Chandrashekhar Dasgupta completes his third term on the CESCR by the end of December 2018.
“The Republican Ethic” and “Loktantra ke Swar” Books Released
- The Vice President of India Shri M.Venkaiah Naidu released Compilation of Selected speeches of the President, Ram Nath Kovind titled, “The Republican Ethic” in English and “Loktantra ke Swar” in Hindi at a function in Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi.
- Both the books- The Republican Ethic & Loktantra ke Swar are a collection of President of India Shri Ram Nath Kovind’s selected speeches made by him in the first year of assuming the office. The event has been organized by the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting.
RBI Governor Urjit Patel quits citing personal reasons
- On 10th December 2018 Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Urjit Patel resigned from his post today citing personal reasons with an immediate effect.
- Urjit Patel was appointed the governor of RBI in 2016 and had about one more year left in his term.
India to retain top position in remittances with USD 80 billion
- The World Bank has said India will retain its position as the world’s top recipient of remittances this year with $80 billion.
- India is followed by China, Mexico, the Philippines and Egypt, according to World Bank’s Migration and Development Brief.
- A foreign remittance is money transferred from a foreign worker to their family or other individuals in their home countries.
- Over the last three years, India registered a significant flow of remittances, from $62.7 billion in 2016 to $65.3 billion in 2017. In 2017, remittances constituted 2.7% of India’s GDP.
Kerala gets its 4th international airport in Kannur
- Kerala’s fourth international airport at Kannur (north Kerala) was inaugurated jointly by Union Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan by flagging off the maiden Air India Express flight to Abu Dhabi.
- International flights to the UAE, Oman and Qatar will be operated from Kannur airport. For regional connectivity, flights to Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Mumbai will be available.
- Kerala already has three international airports, at Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode.
International Human Rights Day observed on December 10
- The International Human Rights Day is observed every year on December 10 to commemorate adaptation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
- On this day in 1948, United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) had ratified Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Hand-in-Hand Military exercise between India, China begins at Chengdu, China
- India and China began the seventh round of “Hand-in-Hand” military drills in the Chinese city of Chengdu as part of the focussed efforts by the two militaries to improve ties after last year’s standoff at Doklam.
- In this edition of exercise, 100 troops from each side are taking part. The main focus is on counter-terrorism operations.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 10th December
Government assign Krishnamurthy Subramanian as New Chief Economic Advisor
- The government appointed Dr Krishnamurthy Subramanian as the new Chief Economic Advisor for a tenure of three years. He is currently working as an Associate Professor at the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad.
- A PhD from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a top-ranking IIT-IIM alumnus, Subramanian is one of the world’s leading experts in banking, corporate governance and economic policy.
India Enters into an Agreement With Peru For Co-operation In Customs Matters
- India signed an agreement with Peru for cooperation and mutual assistance in Customs Matters. It provides a legal framework for the sharing of information and intelligence between the Customs authorities of the two countries.
- The agreement will also help in the proper application of Customs laws, prevention and investigation of Customs offences.
- The agreement was signed by CBIC chairman S Ramesh on behalf of India and National Superintendent of Customs Rafael Garcia.
Exercise AVIAINDRA between Indian and Russian air forces held at Jodhpur
- The second edition of service-specific exercise AVIAINDRA between Indian Air Force and Russian Federation Aerospace Force (RFSAF) was held at Jodhpur, Rajasthan
- The aim of this exercise is to enhance cooperation in anti terrorist activities.
- The inaugural IAF-RFSAF Ex AVIAINDRA was conducted in 2014 and since then it is conducted bi-annually (twice a year) in both countries.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 9th December
INDRA NAVY maritime exercise between India and Russia starts in Visakhapatnam Coast
- The tenth edition of INDRA NAVY maritime exercise between India and Russia started off Visakhapatnam coast, Andhra Pradesh and will be conducted from December 9-16.
- It will be held in two phases viz. Harbour Phase and Sea Phase.
- Harbour Phase will be held at Visakhapatnam and encompass planning conferences, professional interactions, cultural visits, sports fixtures and formal calls between Flag Officers and senior officers of the participating navies.
- Sea Phase will be conducted in the Bay of Bengal. Its thrust will be on Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), air defence drills, surface firings, Visit Board Search and Seizure (VBSS) operations and tactical procedures.
Govt notifies commonly used medical devices as drugs
- Union Ministry of Health & Family Welfare has notified four medical devices including blood pressure monitors, nebulisers, digital thermometers and glucometers as drugs under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act. It will enable the government to ensure their quality and performance.
- The Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) will regulate the import, manufacture and sale of these devices from January 2020.
- The DTAB (Drugs Technical Advisory Board), the country’s highest drug advisory body, had approved the proposal to include them under the purview of the Drug law. Currently, only 23 medical devices are monitored for quality by the country’s drug regulator.
World’s first Telerobotic coronary surgery
- India’s renowned cardiologist Padmashree Dr Tejas Patel from Gujarat performed a heart surgery through teleobotomy. He was 32 km away yet operated the heart. This operation is believed to be the world’s first operation through telerobotics.
- It is believed that this kind of operation will bring a new revolution in the field of medicine. With the help of such technology, high tech medical facilities can be provided in villages and remote areas.
International Anti-Corruption Day observed on December 9
- International Anti-Corruption Day (IACD) is observed every year across the world on December 9.
- Observance of this day aims to promote and strengthen measures to prevent and combat corruption more efficiently and effectively.
- International Anti-Corruption Day was instituted by UN General Assembly (UNGA) by passing a resolution on October 31, 2003.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 8th December
China Launches 1st Mission to Land on the Far Side of the Moon named as Chang’e-4
- ·China launched the first-ever spacecraft, Chang’e-4, that will attempt landing on the far side of the Moon, which always shows the same face to Earth as it’s close enough to be locked by the planet’s gravitational field.
- The Chang’e-4 mission will see a static lander and rover touchdown in Von Kármán crater, located on the side of the Moon which never faces Earth. The freight blasted off atop a Long March 3B rocket from Xichang Satellite Launch Center.
69th Armed Forces Flag Day is celebrated on 07 December
- Armed Forces Flag Day is being celebrated since 07 December 1949.
- This is to honour the martyrs as well as men and women in uniform, who valiantly fight on our borders to safeguard the country’s honour.
- The ‘Armed forces Flag Day Fund’ (AFFDF) has been constituted by the Government of India for the welfare and rehabilitation of the Ex-Servicemen (ESM) community. The fund collection throughout the country is managed by local arms of the Kendriya Sainik Board, which is part of the Ministry of Defence.
State of Maharashtra’s Agribusiness and Rural Transformation (SMART) Project
- Maharashtra Government has launched World Bank assisted State of Maharashtra’s Agribusiness and Rural Transformation (SMART) Project to transform rural Maharashtra.
- The objective of the project is to create and support value chains in post-harvest segments of agriculture, facilitate agribusiness investment, stimulate SMEs within the value chain.
- It will also support resilient agriculture production systems, expand access to new and organised markets for producers and enhance private sector participation in the agribusiness.
6th Dec is celebrated as Mahaparinirvan Day of Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar
- This year marks 63rd Death Anniversary of the constitution creator Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar and was celebrated as Mahaparinirvana Diwas on 6th Dec 2018.
- Dr BR Ambedkar was the Chief Producer of the Indian Constitution and the first Law Minister of Independent India. He was a great legalist, economist, social reformer and politician. In the year 1990, he was awarded posthumously Bharat Ratna Award.
- Ambedkar wrote his last book in 1956, which was on Buddhist religion, the book was titled ‘The Buddha and His Dhamma’. This book was published in the year 1957 after his death.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 7th December
Indian Coast Guard conducts Exercise ‘Clean Sea-2018’ at sea off Port Blair
- The Indian Coast Guard has conducted the Regional Level Marine Oil Pollution Response Exercise titled ‘Clean Sea – 2018’.
- The objective of the exercise was to ascertain preparedness of ICG, resource agencies and other stakeholders in responding to a major oil spill in line with provisions of National Oil Spill Disaster Contingency Plan (NOS-DCP).
- The exercise was conducted in two phases for synchronizing support and cooperation provided by all stakeholders for combating oil spills in such ecologically sensitive areas.
Cabinet approves the launch of National Mission on Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems
- The Union Cabinet has approved the launching of National Mission on Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems (NM-ICPS) to be implemented by Department of Science &Technology at a total outlay of Rs. 3660 crore for a period of five years.
- The NM-ICPS is a comprehensive Mission which would address technology development, application development, human resource development & skill enhancement, entrepreneurship and start-up development in CPS and associated technologies.
- The Mission aims at the establishment of 15 numbers of Technology Innovation Hubs (TIH), six numbers of Application Innovation Hubs (AIH) and four numbers of Technology Translation Research Parks (TTRP).
Sahitya Akademi Awards 2018 Announced
On December 4, 2018, the winners of Annual Sahitya Academy were announced in 24 languages.
- The awards will be presented at a roadshow function to be held on 29th January 2019 at New Delhi during the Festival of Letters organized by Sahitya Akademi.
- Yogendra Nath Sharma was awarded the Bhasha Samman for the North zone; G Venkatasubbiah for South zone; Gagendra Nath Das for the Eastern zone; and Shailaja Bapat for the Western zone.
- Seven books of poetry, six novels, six short stories, three of literary criticism and two of essays have won the Sahitya Akademi Awards.
Cabinet approves Agriculture Export Policy, 2018
- The Cabinet has approved Agriculture Export Policy, 2018 and the proposal for the establishment of Monitoring Framework at Centre with Commerce as the nodal Department.
- The Government has come out with a policy to double farmers’ income by 2022. Exports of agricultural products would play a pivotal role in achieving this goal.
- In order to provide an impetus to agricultural exports, the Government has come out with a comprehensive “Agriculture Export Policy” aimed at doubling the agricultural exports and integrating Indian farmers and agricultural products with the global value chains.
- The Agriculture Export Policy has the following vision “Harness export potential of Indian agriculture, through suitable policy instruments, to make India global power in agriculture and raise farmers’ income.”
RBI keeps repo rate at 6.50% to cut inflation
- RBI Governor Urjit Patel-led monetary policy committee (MPC) maintained the status quo on the short-term lending rate — repo rate — at 6.50 per cent in its fifth bi-monthly policy review of 2018-19.
- Reverse repo — the rate at which the central bank borrows from banks — was kept unchanged at 6.25 per cent.
Former Indian diplomat Preeti Saran elected to UN’s Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
- A former senior Indian diplomat, Preeti Saran was on December 6, 2018, elected unopposed to an Asia Pacific seat on the United Nation’s Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR).
- The UN’s Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) elected Saran to the 18-member committee ‘CESCR’ for a four-year term beginning on January 1, 2019.
- Saran will begin her term at CESCR after another former Indian diplomat Chandrashekhar Dasgupta completes his third term on the CESCR by the end of December 2018.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 6th December
Home Affairs Ministry released A Handbook for Students on Cyber Safety to aware teenagers about online Crimes and Threats
- The Ministry of Home Affairs released a booklet in the English language titled “A Handbook for Students on Cyber Safety” to aware the Students and Adolescents about the cyber safety.
- The book explains the various kinds of Cyber-crimes like identity theft, job fraud, email spoofing and how children can overcome them.
- The booklet also addresses the problems associated with the increased use of smart phones, Social Media, Online gaming.
Big Bird: India’s heaviest communication satellite launched successfully from French Guiana
- India’s heaviest and most-advanced communication satellite GSAT-11, also called the “Big Bird”, was successfully launched into space on December 5, 2018, from the Spaceport in French Guiana, South America.
- Developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), the GSAT-11 was launched on the Ariane 5 VA-246 rocket from Kourou Launch Base, French Guiana. This satellite will help provide satellite-based internet to remote places where cable-based internet cannot reach.
- The satellite, weighing 5854 kg, is the heaviest Indian-made equipment that has been put into the orbit. GSAT-11 will boost the broadband connectivity to rural and inaccessible Gram Panchayats in the country under the Bharat Net Project, which is part of Digital India Programme.
- The Bharat Net Project aims to boost public welfare schemes like e-banking, e-health, e-governance, among others. The satellite will help meet India’s growing mobile and internet usage in households, businesses and public organizations.
India and UAE sign agreement on currency trade
- India and UAE recently signed two agreements, including one on currency swap, as External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj held exhaustive discussions with her counterpart Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan to step up cooperation in areas like trade, security and defence.
- The second agreement would enable both sides to undertake development projects in Africa, reinforcing the strong bonds of friendship. The Ministers looked forward to continuing the trend to strengthen & seek partnership in new areas. They had exhaustive discussions on cooperation in energy, security, trade, investments, space, defence & consular, among others.
- Currency Swap is such a pact between two countries that allows trading in their own currency and payments to import and export trade at pre-determined exchange rate without bringing in a third benchmark currency like the US dollars. With nearly $ 50 billion bilateral trade, the two countries are one of the largest trade partners for each other and have made robust investments bilaterally. The UAE is the sixth-largest source of Indian oil imports and hosts a 3.3 million-strong Indian community.
Union Minister inaugurates India Water Impact Summit 2018
- The union minister for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Shri Nitin Gadkari inaugurated India Water Impact Summit 2018 on 5th Dec 2018. The event being jointly organized by the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) and the Centre for Ganga River Basin Management and Studies (cGanga).
- The event is on till 7th December 2018 in New Delhi. The India Water Impact Summit is an annual event where stakeholders get together to discuss, debate and develop model solutions for some of the biggest water related problems in the country.
- The discussions this year will be on the rejuvenation of the Ganga River Basin. There will be multi-country dialogue on the subject, with showcasing of technological innovations, research, policy frameworks and funding models from India and abroad.
- A number of Indian Central Government Ministries, as well as all key decision makers responsible for delivering the rejuvenation of the Ganga, will also be present at the Summit. The efforts may take various forms including (but not limited to): data collection (sensors, LIDAR, modelling etc), hydrology, e-flows, agriculture, waste water and more. Nearly 200 domestic and international participants from nearly 15 countries and more than 50 Central, State and Municipal Government representatives are likely to participate in the summit.
- There will be sessions on Afforestation and Biodiversity, Urban River/Water Management Plans, Creating a Global Ecosystem for financing the Ganga Rejuvenation Programme and tapping into global capital markets for long term project finance.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 5th December
PRASAD Scheme: Centre includes Gangotri, Yamunotri in Uttarakhand, Amarkantak in MP and Parasnath in Jharkhand
- The Centre has included Gangotri and Yamunotri in Uttarakhand, Amarkantak in Madhya Pradesh and Parasnath in Jharkhand under a central scheme to develop pilgrimage and heritage destinations in the country.
- With the new additions, the number of sites under the Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive (PRASAD) launched by the ministry in 2014-15 has now become 41 in 25 states.
- The scheme aims at infrastructure development such as entry points (road, rail and water transport), last mile connectivity, basic tourism facilities like Information/ Interpretation Centers, ATM/ money exchange, eco-friendly modes of transport, lighting and illumination with renewable sources of energy, parking, drinking water, toilets, cloak room, waiting rooms, first aid centers, craft bazaars /haats/ souvenir shops/ cafeteria, rain shelters, telecom facilities, internet connectivity etc.
Delhi government launched ‘One’ card for ease of commute on metro, buses
- On December 4, 2018, Delhi government announced the launch of a common mobility card called ‘One’, with a tagline of ‘One Delhi One Ride’, for an easy commute on public transport.
- This would enable access to Metro and bus services with a single card at a 10 per cent discount.
- A further provision of coverage of auto-rickshaws, taxis, RTVs and other modes of transport would be inducted under this card.
The government of India and the Asian Development Bank inked $85 Million loan to support Odisha Skill Development Project
- On December 3, 2018, the Government of India and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed an $85 million loan in New Delhi, under the Odisha Skill Development Project to promote skill development in Odisha.
- This project would receive a $2 million technical assistance grant from the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction, financed by the Government of Japan. It will be administered by ADB.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 4th December
Indian Navy to conduct TROPEX Exercise to test the robustness of coastal security apparatus
- Indian Navy will conduct its flagship large-scale coastal defence exercise Theatre Level Operational Readiness Exercise (TROPEX) from January to March 2019 to test the robustness of entire coastal security apparatus.
- As part of TROPEX, Indian Navy will conduct large-scale coastal defence exercise ‘Exercise Sea Vigil’.
- TROPEX is a yearly exercise that takes place on Western Seaboard. It is conducted to test various aspects of not only joint combat capabilities but also to test the war capabilities of three services in war like situation.
SHINYUU Maitri 18: First India, Japan air exercise begins in Agra
- The Japanese Air Self Defence Force (JASDF) is in India for a bilateral air exercise “SHINYUU Maitri-18” with the Indian Air Force (IAF).
- The theme of the exercise is joint mobility and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) on transport aircraft.
- IAF and JASDF will also practice display of heavy loading/off loading during this exercise.
India to host G20 Summit in 2022
- India will host G20 Summit In 2022 when it celebrates its 75th year of Independence.
- It was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during ongoing G20 meet of international grouping in Buenos Aires, capital of Argentina. This comes after Italy accepted India’s formal request to host this summit in 2021 as earlier it was going to host it in 2022.
- G20 is a premier forum for international economic cooperation and decision-making for governments and central bank governors from 20 major economies to focus on economic issues and other important development challenges.
COP24: 24th Conference of Parties to UNFCCC begins Katowice, Poland
- The 24th meeting of Conference of Parties (COP-24) to United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) began at Katowice, Poland.
- The UNFCCC is a “Rio Convention”, one of three adopted at the “Rio Earth Summit” in 1992. The UNFCCC entered into force on 21 March 1994. The countries that have ratified the Convention are called Parties to the Convention. Preventing “dangerous” human interference with the climate system is the aim of the UNFCCC.
- Conferences of the Parties (COPs) constitute the main decision-making body of the Convention, are the most important instrument of international cooperation in the field of tackling the impacts of climate change.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 3rd December
- UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities was observed globally on December 3, 2018.
- This year’s theme of the day is “Empowering persons with disabilities and ensuring inclusiveness and equality”. This year’s theme focuses on empowering persons with disabilities for an inclusive, equitable and sustainable development as part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The 2030 Agenda pledges to “leave no one behind”.
- The day aims to promote the rights of persons with disabilities in all spheres of society and development. It also aims to increase awareness of the situation of persons with disabilities in every aspect of life, be it political, social, economic or cultural.
Train 18: India’s first locomotive-less train crosses 180 kmph mark during trials
- India’s first locomotive-less train ‘Train 18’ on December 2, 2018, crossed the 180 kmph speed limit during a test run in the Kota-Sawai Madhopur section.
- Train 18 was rolled out on October 29, 2018, by Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani at the Chennai’s Integral Coach Factory (ICF). Considered as the Next Generation Shatabdi Express, this is the first long-distance train without a separate locomotive. It is capable of running at a speed of up to 160 kmph. It will cut travel time by 15 percent compared to the Shatabdi Express.
India pays tribute to first President Dr Rajendra Prasad on his 134th birth anniversary
- The nation pays homage to the first President Dr Rajendra Prasad on his 134th birth anniversary on 3rd December.
- As the 1st President of Independent India, Dr Prasad played an important role in laying a strong and stable foundation for India’s prosperous future.
Qatar to withdraw from OPEC in January 2019
• Qatar decided to withdraw its membership from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) from January 2019.
• The announcement was made by Qatar’s Energy Minister, Saad al-Kaabi at a press conference in Doha.
• The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries is an intergovernmental organization of 15 nations, founded in 1960 and headquartered since 1965 in Vienna, Austria.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to be the Chief Guest at Republic Day, 2019
- South African President Cyril Ramaphosa will be Chief Guest at India’s 70th Republic Day celebrations on January 26, 2019.
• Ramaphosa was invited by Prime Minister Narendra Modi when two leaders met on sidelines of G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
• The announcement comes a month after US President Donald Trump declined India’s invitation to be the chief guest. The reason cited was “scheduling constraints” of President.
• The Republic Day is celebrated to honour the Constitution of India that came into effect on January 26, 1950, replacing the Government of India Act (1935) as the governing document of India.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 2nd December
First India-ASEAN InnoTech Summit held in New Delhi
- The very first India-ASEAN InnoTech Summit was held in New Delhi. It was organized by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) in affiliation with the Department of Science & Know-how (DST) and Ministry of External Affairs.
- The summit tried to examine avenues of cross country partnerships with Indian R&D-based enterprises, seize worldwide trends in technological know-how management and approach, build avenues for industry-academia-government partnerships etc.’
- ASEAN is a regional intergovernmental organisation comprising 10 Southeast Asian international locations, which encourages intergovernmental cooperation and facilitates financial, political, stability, military, educational, and sociocultural integration. 10-member ASEAN comprises of Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Philippines, Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, Brunei and Laos. India is a total dialogue spouse of the ASEAN.
Blue Cross: Abhinav Bindra becomes the first Indian to get highest shooting honour
- Ace Indian shooter Abhinav Bindra (36) and still India’s only individual Olympic gold medalist was awarded the coveted International Shooting Sports Federation (ISSF) Blue Cross.
- The award is conferred for outstanding contribution to the sport of shooting and honours distinguished members of the international shooting fraternity. Blue Cross is the highest recognition conferred by the parent body of international shooting(ISSF).
- Abhinav Bindra has won the Olympic gold medal (2008), World Championship gold (2006), 7 Commonwealth Games medals and 3 Asian Games medals in shooting.
International Day for the Abolition of Slavery: December 2
- The International Day for the Abolition of Slavery is observed on December 2 every year with an objective to raise awareness about slavery and its impact on society.
- This day marks adaptation of resolution ‘Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Prostitution of Others’ by United Nations General Assembly on 2 December 1949.
- International Labour Organisation (ILO) more than 40 million people worldwide are victims of modern slavery.
Government forms Rajiv Kumar Committee to look at the selling of OIL, ONGC fields to private companies
- Union Government has constituted six-member committee to look at selling as many as 149 small and marginal oil and gas fields of state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and Oil India Ltd (OIL) to private and foreign companies to boost domestic output.
- The committee will be headed by NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar and includes Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha, Oil Secretary M M Kutty, Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg, NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant and ONGC Chairman and Managing Director Shashi Shanker as members.
Current Affairs December 2018 | 1st December
PSLV-C43 successfully launches earth observation satellite HysIS and 30 foreign satellites
- The Indian Space Research Organisation’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C43) successfully launched 31 satellites from Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC).
- HysIS is an earth observation satellite built around ISRO’s Mini Satellite2 (IMS-2) bus weighing about 380kg. The mission life of the satellite is five years. The primary goal of HysIS is to study the earth’s surface in both the visible, near infrared and shortwave infrared regions of the electromagnetic spectrum.
Manipur Sangai Festival-2018
- From 21st November to 30th November, every year, Manipur Tourism Department organizes annual cultural festival known as “Sangai Festival.”
- The ‘Festival’ is named after the State animal, Sangai, the brow-antlered deer found only in Manipur.
- It started in the year 2010 and has grown over the years into a big platform for Manipur to showcase its rich tradition and culture to the world. The festival is labelled as the grandest festival of the State today and helps promote Manipur as a world class tourism destination.
India, China ink protocol on hygiene & inspection requirements for exports
- A protocol on hygiene and inspection requirements for the exports was signed in New Delhi. The move would enable India to commence export of fish meal and fish oil to China. The neighbouring country has so far not allowed these exports by India. China imports fish oil to the tune of USD 143.29 million per year and fish meal worth USD 263.43 million.
Cope India 2019: India, US air exercise to be held in West Bengal
- Air forces of the United States and India will take part in a 12-day joint exercise ‘Cope India 2019’ (CI19) at two air force stations in West Bengal from December 3 to 14, 2018.
- The exercise will be held at Air Station Kalaikunda and Air Station Arjan Singh (Panagarh) in West Bengal. This exercise is conducted after a gap of 8 years. The previous edition of this exercise was held in 2010.
- This will focus on US-Indian mutual-cooperation and building on existing capabilities, aircrew tactics and force employment.
8 States achieve 100% household electrification under Saubhagya
- 8 States have achieved 100% saturation in household electrification under Saubhagya namely Madhya Pradesh, Tripura, Bihar, J&K, Mizoram, Sikkim, Telangana and West Bengal. Thus total 15 States in the country now have 100 % household electrification.
- Saubhagya – ‘Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana’ was launched in September 2017 with the objective to provide access to electricity to all the remaining households in the country. The Minister informed that as many as 2.1 crore connections have been released under Saubhagya so far.
Now that you have date-wise current affairs December on a both National and International basis, you are ought to score well in general awareness section. Just keep yourself involved in quizzes and other factors that might uplift your general knowledge. Download short news application on your mobile phone to stay updated on the go. Keep revising through last 6 months current affairs. Mostly the exams have questions related to the last 6 months affairs. Along with all this keep practising mock test papers. You can practice Bank Mock Test on Embibe to get an idea of the questions asked in such exams.
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