Daily Current Affairs - 11th May 2019

Amazon’s Bezos plans to send a spaceship to the moon

  • Amazon tycoon Jeff Bezos has said that he’s going to send a spaceship to the moon, joining a resurgence of lunar interest half a century after people first set foot there. Mr. Bezos said his space company Blue Origin will land a robotic ship the size of a small house, capable of carrying four rovers and using a newly designed rocket engine and souped-up rockets. It would be followed by a version that could bring people to the moon along the same timeframe as NASA’s proposed 2024 return.

Eden Hazard nets winning penalty as Chelsea reach Europa League final

  • Eden Hazard scored the winning penalty for Chelsea to beat Eintracht Frankfurt 4-3 in their Europa League semi-final shootout and become the fourth English side to reach a European final this season. They will meet London club Arsenal in distant Baku on May 29.

Gujarat in the grip of massive water shortage

  • With rising mercury levels and a severe heat wave, there is a massive water crisis across Gujarat, particularly in the scarcity-hit Saurashtra region, Kutch, North Gujarat and parts of tribal pockets in central and South Gujarat.
  • More than 20 districts in the State are severely affected. Towns and villages there hardly get water twice a week. In more than 500 villages in 14 districts, drinking water is being supplied through tankers and that number will only rise in the days to come.

Hockey: India register 3-0 win over Australia A

  • Indian men's hockey team registered a comfortable 3-0 win against Australia A in Perth. Young striker Sumit Kumar Jr struck a brace after comeback-man Rupinder Pal Singh opened the scoring. India will play their next game, of the five-match series, on Monday.
  • India will also play the Australian national team on 15th and 17th of this month.

Human rights groups urge Sri Lanka to protect asylum seekers

  • Several international human rights groups have urged Sri Lanka to protect asylum seekers and not deport them following the Easter Sunday attacks. In a joint appeal, the organizations raised concerns over the safety of the refugees and asylum seekers saying they have been unfairly targeted and displaced after the Easter Church attacks.
  • About 1,200 people from Pakistan and Afghanistan have fled their homes due to the fear, threats and intimidation they experienced in their neighbourhoods.
  • Sri Lanka
  • President: Maithripala Sirisena
  • Prime minister: Ranil Wickremesinghe
  • Capitals: Colombo, Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte
  • Currency: Sri Lankan rupee

ICC suspends Nuwan Zoysa, Avishka Gunawardene alleging corruption in T10 league

  • Former Sri Lanka players Nuwan Zoysa and Avishka Gunawardene were provisionally suspended by the International Cricket Council (ICC) on charges of indulging in corruption in a T10 league in the UAE.
  • The ICC, on behalf of the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB), charged former Lankan bowling coach Zoysa on four counts and Gunawardene on two counts.

India, Vietnam reiterate commitment to build a peaceful and prosperous Indo-pacific region

  • India and Vietnam reiterated the importance of building a peaceful and prosperous Indo-pacific region on the basis of respect for national sovereignty and international law. During a delegation level talks in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi, the two sides expressed hope that the concerned countries are able to reach consensus on a code of conduct in the South China Sea.
  • Both nations agreed to further strengthen their bilateral cooperation in several fields including defence and security.
  • Vietnam
  • President: Nguyen Phu Tr?ng
  • Prime Minister: Nguyen Xuan Phuc
  • Capital: Hanoi
  • Currency: Vietnamese dong

IPL: Delhi to face Chennai in 2nd Qualifier today

  • In IPL Cricket, Delhi Capitals will face Chennai Super Kings in the second Qualifier match at Visakhapatnam this evening. The winner of this match will take on Mumbai Indians in the summit clash in Hyderabad on Sunday. If Delhi wins, it will be their maiden appearance in the IPL final.

Mediators In Ayodhya Dispute Get Time Till August 15 To Find Solution

  • The mediation panel for the Ayodhya temple-mosque dispute was given time till August 15 by the Supreme Court to come up with a solution.
  • In the previous hearing, the top court had referred the decades-old dispute for mediation and set up the panel, headed by former Supreme Court judge FM Kalifulla. The panel has been tasked by the court to hold consultations to explore a potential avenue for an amicable settlement.
  • The other two members of the panel are spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravishankar and senior advocate Sriram Panchu, a well-known mediator in the legal circles.
  • The dispute involves the site in Ayodhya where the 16th-century Babri mosque stood before it was razed in 1992 by Hindu activists who believe that it was built on the ruins of an ancient temple marking the birthplace of Lord Ram. In riots following the mosque demolition, 2,000 people died across the country.

Singapore reports first case of the rare monkeypox virus

  • Singapore has reported its first case of the rare monkeypox virus brought in by a Nigerian man who authorities said may have been infected by bushmeat he ate at a wedding. Monkeypox, a virus similar to the human smallpox which was eradicated in 1980, does not spread easily from person to person, but can in rare cases be fatal.
  • Human monkeypox infections have only been documented three times outside of Africa, in the United States, the United Kingdom and Israel.
  • Monkeypox typically lasts for two to four weeks, starting as a fever and headache and progressing through to small bumps called pustules that spread over the body.
  • Singapore
  • President: Halimah Yacob
  • Prime Minister: Lee Hsien Loong
  • Currency:Singapore dollar

Tamil novelist and Sahitya Akademi awardee Thoppil Mohamed Meeran dies aged 74

  • Noted novelist and Sahitya Akademi awardee Thoppil Mohamed Meeran passed away. Mohamed Meeran authored the novels which include Oru Kadalora Graamaththin Kathai, Thuraimugam, Koonan Thoppu, Saaivu Naarkkaali and Anju Vannam Theru between 1988 and 2011.
  • Of these Saaivu Naarkkaali (The Reclining Chair), released in 1995, bagged him the prestigious Sahitya Akademi Award in 1997. His mastery over both Tamil and Malayalam was amazing as he could use both the languages in his novels effortlessly

Thai election results announced, with no clear majority

  • Thailand's election commission has announced the final results of the March 24 general election — the first since a military coup in 2014 that gave no party an absolute majority and probably will prompt legal challenges.
  • Each party was allocated its share of the 350 constituency seats. Pheu Thai topped the field by winning 136 constituencies, while Palang Pracharat was second with 97 seats, though it received the most popular votes. Neither party received a majority, and both are attempting to put together coalitions with smaller parties to form a government.
  • The election commission has been heavily criticized for releasing delayed and confusing preliminary vote totals, and was accused of tilting in favor of the military-backed Palang Pracharat party.
  • Thailand:
  • Capital: Bangkok
  • Currency: Thai baht

US tariff increase on $200B of Chinese imports takes effect

  • President Donald Trump’s latest tariff hikes on Chinese goods took effect on Friday and China said it would retaliate, escalating a battle over China’s technology ambitions and other trade strains. The Trump administration raised import taxes on $200 billion of Chinese imports from 10% to 25%.
  • The increase went ahead even as American and Chinese negotiators began another round of talks in Washington aimed at ending a battle that has disrupted billions of dollars in trade and shaken global financial markets.