Daily Current Affairs - 30th Dec 2019

Amitabh Bachchan honoured with Dadasaheb Phalke Award

  • Veteran actor Amitabh Bachchan was presented the Dadasaheb Phalke award by President Ram Nath Kovind at Rashtrapati Bhawan.
  • The award, named after Dhundiraj Govind Phalke who is revered as the father of Indian cinema, was instituted in 1969.
  • Considered the highest honour for an artiste in Indian cinema, the award comprises a Swarna Kamal medallion, a shawl, and a cash prize of 10 lakh rupees. It was conferred upon late actor Vinod Khanna in 2017.

Australia thrash New Zealand by 247 runs in 2nd Test, win series

  • Australia thrashed New Zealand by 247 runs to win the second Test and the series at Melbourne. Nathan Lyon's spell of four helped the hosts in defending the massive target of 488 runs. Kiwis were dismissed for 240.

Australia: Thousands told to evacuate Victoria state amid fast spreading forest fire

  • In Australia, tens of thousands of residents and holidaymakers in the state of Victoria have been told to evacuate amid worsening bushfire conditions. Officials said, temperatures of over 40 degree centigrade, strong winds, thunderstorms and a change of wind direction meant that there would be a day of extreme danger in the coming days.
  • More than 100 fires are continuing to burn across Australia. The biggest are raging near the city of Sydney in New South Wales, where more than a quarter of a million people have signed a petition calling for the New Year's Eve fireworks to be cancelled and the money spent on fighting fires.

Coal India chalks out strategy to meet 660 MT production

  • Amid concerns that Coal India Ltd (CIL) may fall short of its 660 million tonne (MT) production target for the current fiscal, the miner has planned to ramp up daily output to meet the goal.
  • Till December, the miner is expected to produce close to 390 MT of coal and will require another 270 MT in the last quarter of this fiscal to meet the annual production target.
  • Currently, Coal India produces 1.8 MT per day while the asking rate to achieve the target is 2.9 MT.
  • According to the provisional data, the miner produced 330.38 MT of coal during April-November in the 2019-20 fiscal, down by 7.8 per cent from 358.30 MT in the year-ago period.
  • In 2018-19, Coal India produced 606.89 MT while dispatch was at 608.14 MT.

Cyclone Sarai: 2,000 people took refuge in emergency shelters in Fiji

  • In Fiji, nearly 2,000 people took refuge in emergency shelters after being swept away in floodwaters as Tropical Cyclone Sarai pounded the country. With wind gusts strengthening to 150 kilometres per hour during the day, Sarai destroyed houses and crops, brought down trees, cut power and caused considerable flooding in low-lying areas.
  • The Fiji government issued a statement warning of destructive force winds with coastal sea flooding to be expected.

Govt committed to ensure that each paramilitary force jawan spends 100 days with his family: Amit Shah

  • Home Minister Amit Shah has said, the union government is committed to ensure that each and every jawan of the para-military forces spends hundred days in a year with his family. He said, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has assured to take care of the families of the security personnel while they guard the nation.
  • Mr Shah said, health cards will be provided to the families of the jawans and urged the state governments to provide such a facility.

India likely to surpass Germany to become the fourth-largest economy in 2026: Report

  • India will overtake Germany to become fourth-largest economy in the world by the year 2026. According to a report by the UK-based Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), India is all set to overtake Japan to become the third-largest economy by 2034.
  • The report titled 'World Economic League Table 2020' said that India is also set to become a 5 trillion dollar economy by 2026, 2 years later than the government's target of 2024.

Internet shutdowns lead to losses of Rs.2.45 crore per hour: Telcos

  • Switching off internet services as per government orders hurts dependent businesses to the tune of Rs. 2.45 crore per hour, according to Telecom companies. Telecom companies must abide by the government orders to suspend or shut down internet under their license obligation.
  • The fear of losses increasing grew when mobile internet services were disrupted across parts of Uttar Pradesh for eight consecutive days.
  • As per the Telecom Statistics of India (TSI) 2018, Uttar Pradesh has 167.59 million wireless telecom (mobile) subscribers, spread evenly across urban and rural regions. With 14.1 per cent of the total subscribers, the State has the highest number of mobile users in the country.

MDR charges will not be applicable on transactions through RuPay, UPI platforms from 1st of January: FM Nirmala Sitharaman

  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said that no Merchant Discount Rate (MDR) will be applicable on transactions through homegrown RuPay and UPI platforms beginning 1st of January next year.
  • Department of Revenue (DoR) will soon notify RuPay and UPI as the prescribed mode of payment for digital transactions without any MDR.
  • All companies with a turnover of 50 crore rupees or more will be mandated to provide the facility of payment through RuPay Debit card and UPI QR code to their customers. All banks will also start a campaign to popularise RuPay Debit card and UPI.
  • MDR is the cost paid by a merchant to a bank for accepting payment from their customers via digital means. The merchant discount rate is expressed in percentage of the transaction amount.

MyGov reaches 1 crore registered users

  • Central government's citizen engagement platform - MyGov has reached one crore registered users. Five years ago, @mygovindia began its journey with a vision to offer a platform for the voice and views of the people of India.
  • In a tweet, Prime Minister's Office said, MyGov has emerged as a vibrant centre for ideas and insights.

PM Modi says ISRO is planning to launch satellite Aditya to study Sun

  • In his 'Mann ki Baat' programme, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that ISRO is planning to launch a satellite called ‘’Aditya’’ to study the sun.
  • The Prime Minister said that India has many powerful telescopes around the country including a giant meter-wave telescope near Pune and other powerful telescopes located in Kodaikkaanal, Udagamandala, Guru Shikhar and Hanle Ladakh.
  • Mr Modi also pressed on the need to form astronomy clubs on school and college levels.

RCap gets back 100 per cent shareholding in Reliance General Insurance

  • The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has cancelled the enforcement of pledged shares of Reliance General Insurance Company Ltd (RGICL) by Credit Suisse and Nippon India Mutual Fund. The regulator has held that the move was in violation of law.

South Africa win first Test by 107 runs after new ball leads to England collapse

  • South Africa defeated England in the first test by a margin of 107 runs at Centurion. Kagiso Rabada takes four for 103 as South Africa take 1-0 lead in a four match test series. England was handed for a 107-run defeat in the Boxing Day Test against South Africa.
  • England were set an improbable victory target of 376.

UAE extends 300 million US dollars of development aid to Jordan

  • The Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD) has announced that it is providing 300 million US dollars as development aid to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
  • Thousands of refugees have been pouring into Jordan to escape Syria’s civil war. Syria shares the northern border with Jordan.
  • According to an UN estimate the Hashemite kingdom hosts about 630,000 Syrian refugees.

Udayan Mane sets new PGTI record; bags TATA Steel Tour C’ship title

  • Udayan Mane produced a flawless seven-under 65 on the final day to claim a thrilling one-shot win at the season-ending TATA Steel Tour Championship in Jamshedpur. It was Mane's eighth professional title and his second win on the PGTI this season.
  • SSP Chawrasia had settled for second place.