Daily Current Affairs - 09th Dec 2018

Axis Bank inducts Amitabh Chaudhry as additional director on its board

  • Axis Bank inducted Amitabh Chaudhry as additional director on its board, three weeks ahead of his taking over as the new managing director and CEO of the private sector lender.
  • He will replace incumbent Shikha Sharma whose fourth term has been curtailed by the RBI by nearly two-and-half years.

China Launches 1st Mission to Land on the Far Side of the Moon

  • 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 touch down in Von Kármán crater, located on the side of the Moon which never faces Earth. The payload blasted off atop a Long March 3B rocket from Xichang Satellite Launch Center.

December 8th: Indian Navy celebrating Submarine Day

  • The Indian Navy is celebrating Submarine Day on 8th December. The day commemorates the induction of the first submarine, the erstwhile INS Kalvari, into the Navy on this day in 1967.
  • The Foxtrot class submarine was decommissioned on the 31st May 1996, after 29 years of service.

FAO Council approves India’s proposal to observe International Year of Millets in 2023

  • Food and Agriculture organization, FAO Council has approved India’s proposal to observe an International Year of Millets in 2023.
  • The 160th session of the FAO Council, currently underway in Rome approved the proposal.
  • Millets consists of Jowar, Bajra, Ragi and minor millets together termed as nutri-cereals. In addition, the FAO Council has also approved India’s membership to the Executive Board of the United Nations World Food Program for 2020 and 2021.

Foreign Minister of Iceland meets Sushma Swaraj in Delhi

  • Foreign Minister of Iceland Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson met External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in New Delhi and held discussions on bilateral, multilateral and international issues of interest.
  • The two sides noted that in the areas such as geo-thermal energy, fisheries, IT, pharmaceuticals and tourism, the two countries could establish strong partnership. The Icelandic Minister appreciated growing opportunities for Icelandic companies in the fast-growing Indian economy.

Gender wage gap highest in India, Women are paid 34% less than Men: ILO

  • According to the Global Wage Report 2018-19 published by International Labour Organization (ILO), Women are paid the most unequally in India, compared to men, when it comes to hourly wages for labor.
  • On average, women are paid 34% less than men. This gap in wages, known as the gender wage gap, is the highest among 73 countries. Overall, real wages grew just 1.8% globally (136 countries) in 2017. In real terms (adjusted for price inflation), global wage growth declined to 1.8% in 2017, from 2.4% in 2016.

India Water Summit concludes in Delhi

  • The three days India Water Summit concluded in New Delhi. Key issues including afforestation, biodiversity, urban river management, innovation in sewage and sewerage management were discussed during the event.
  • The Summit introduced the Ganga Finance Forum, which brought together a number of national and international financial sector experts.
  • The India Water Impact Summit is an annual event to provide a platform to start a discourse towards understanding water as a natural resource.

Maharashtra C.M Fadnavis Launches SMART Project

  • The state government launched an ambitious project State of Maharashtra Agribusiness and Rural Transformation (SMART) in 10,000 villages with an objective to achieve sustainable farming within the next three years. The project SMART will be assisted by the World Bank.
  • Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis launched the project, which was followed by the signing of 50 memorandum of understandings (MoUs) between big corporates and farmers producer groups. The project will cover almost one-fourth of Maharashtra.

Mexico’s Vanessa Poncede Leon wins Miss World 2018 crown

  • Mexico’s Vanessa Ponce de Leon won the coveted Miss World 2018 crown at a grand event held in the Chinese city, Sanya. Thailand’s Nicolene Pichapa Limsnukan was declared the runner-up.
  • Former Miss World Manushi Chillar (India) presented the crown to the new winner during the pageant in which 118 contestants participated. India’s Anukreethy Vas failed to make a mark at the pageant as she could not even make it to the top 30.

Ministry of New and Renewable Energy conferred Skoch Award for National Significance

  • Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Government of India has been conferred the Skoch Award for National Significance at an event held recently in New Delhi. The award was received by Secretary, Ministry of New Renewable Energy Shri Anand Kumar.
  • The award has been conferred on the Ministry considering its purpose and critical role played in installing about 73 GW renewable energy capacity in the country.
  • Today, India ranks 4 in the world in wind energy capacity and 5th in solar & total renewable energy capacity installed in the world.

Nabard signs $100-mn agreement with Green Climate Fund to boost solar power

  • The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Nabard) signed an agreement with Green Climate Fund (GCF) to infuse $100 million into the project designed to unlock private sector initiatives for the creation of rooftop solar power capacity across India.
  • The $250 million project, to be executed by Tata Cleantech Capital Ltd, will receive the GCF support through Nabard, which is the National Implementing Entity (NIE) for the UNFCC-promoted Fund that supports the efforts of developing countries to respond to the challenge of climate change.

NITI Aayog launches Global hackathon on Artificial Intelligence

  • NITI Aayog has partnered with Perlin, a Singapore-based Artificial Intelligence (AI) firm, to launch a global hackathon for developing solutions aimed at creating social and economic impact in India.
  • The move is to source sustainable, innovative and technologically enabled solutions to address various challenges in the development space, in line with government’s mission of ‘AI for all’ articulated in the National AI Strategy.

Ranji Trophy: Ajay Rohera creates world record for highest first-class debut score

  • Madhya Pradesh opener Ajay Rohera etched his name in the record books by slamming the highest first-class score on debut.
  • He remained unbeaten on 267 against Hyderabad in their Ranji Trophy Elite Group-B Cricket in Indore. 21-year-old Rohera's 267 not out is a world record.
  • The record was earlier held by former Mumbai stalwart Amol Mazumdar, who had hit 260 versus Haryana at Faridabad in 1994.

Second largest Ebola outbreak spreads in Congo

  • The second-largest Ebola outbreak in history has spread to a major city in eastern Congo. Butembo, with more than one million residents, is now reporting cases of the deadly hemorrhagic fever.
  • The outbreak declared in August is now second only to the devastating West Africa outbreak that killed more than 11,300 people a few years ago. The Ebola virus spreads via bodily fluids of those infected, including the dead.

Table Tennis Championships: Manav Thakkar reaches Junior Worlds quarter-final in singles

  • India’s Manav Thakkar beat Feng Yi-Hsin of Chinese Taipei 11-7, 8-11, 11-4, 9-11, 14-12, 11-1 to enter the Junior Boys singles quarterfinals in the 2018 World Junior Table Tennis Championships at Bendigo in Australia.
  • However, Manush Shah and Jeet Chandra exited after losing their main draw matches in the first round itself. Chandra lost to Romanian Cristian Plelta 8-11, 5-11, 8-11, 8-11 while Shah went down to Singapore’s Pang Yew En Koen in a hard-fought round of 32 match 11-6, 9-11, 11-4, 5-11 4-11, 7-11.

Trump names Heather Nauert as US ambassador to UN

  • US President Donald Trump nominated State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauertas the US Ambassador to the United Nations. The former Fox News presenter’s appointment to the UN role will have to be approved by the US Senate.
  • Nauert will replace Nikki Haley, who will be leaving the post by the end of 2018. She became the State Department’s spokeswoman in April 2017 and was named as the acting undersecretary for public diplomacy and public affairs in early 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.