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Current Affairs December 20th 2018

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Current Affairs December 20th 2018

shape Introduction

Current Affairs is a type of broadcast journalism where the emphasis is on detailed analysis and discussion of news stories that have recently occurred or ongoing at the time of broadcast. The article Current Affairs December 20th 2018 includes News summary on current events of International, National, Banking, Sports Awards, Appointments, Science, Books and Quiz importance of December 20th 2018.

shape Days

Goa celebrated 57th Liberation Day

Source: Cick Here

Key Highlights:

  • On December 19, 2018, 57th Goa Liberation Day was celebrated.

  • Goa Liberation Day programme was held in Panaji in North Goa.

  • Goa legislative assembly speaker Pramod Sawant also presented Goa Chief Minister’s Fire Service Medals for meritorious service as part of Liberation Day celebrations in Panaji.

  • Goa was liberated on 19th December1961, from around 450 years of Portuguese rule.

shape International

Zambia has joined as a member of International Solar Alliance

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Key Highlights:

  • Recently Vice President Venkaiah Naidu met Zambian Parliamentary delegation in New Delhi. He welcomed Zambia as a member of the International Solar Alliance and hoped for early ratification of the ISA Framework Agreement.

  • He also told the delegation that India would be happy to associate with the Zambian Parliament in the training of its officials or any other specific areas.
United Arab Emriates President declares 2019 as Year of Tolerance

Source: Cick Here

Key Highlights:

  • United Arab Emirates (UAE) President H.H. Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan has declared 2019 to be the “Year of Tolerance.”

  • To highlight UAE as the Global Capital of Tolerance, instilling the values of co-existence and peace in local, regional and international community’s The Year of Tolerance will focus on “Five Pillars”.
Gender pay gap will take 202 years to close

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Key Highlights:

  • It could take 202 years for women to earn as much as men because the global pay gap is so vast and the pace of change so slow, the World Economic Forum (WEF) has said in a report.

  • The annual report from WEF found that women on average make 63 per cent of what men earn. There was not a single country out of 149 assessed where women on an average made more or as much as men. Laos, in south-east Asia, is the closest to achieving parity with women earning 91% of what men are paid.

  • The WEF, which organises the annual meeting of business and political leaders in Davos, said the global gender pay gap has narrowed slightly over the past year, but the number of women in the professional workplace has fallen. In 2017, the WEF estimated that it would take 217 years to close the pay gap.

  • Iceland was the most equal country in terms of political roles, but there was still a 33 per cent gap that widened compared to last year.

shape National

Ashok Gehlot delivers, waives farm loans of up to Rs 2 lakhs in Rajasthan

Source: Cick Here

Key Highlights:

  • Two days after being sworn in, the Congress government in Rajasthan waived short-term crop loans from cooperative banks and loans of up to Rs 2 lakh taken by farmers from other banks.

  • This will put a burden of Rs. 18,000 crore on the exchequer.

  • The decision was taken after a proper detailed discussion with officials from the concerned departments. A roadmap has been prepared so that the officers face no problem in following the decision.
Manipur journalist who called CM 'puppet of PM' jailed for 1 yr

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Key Highlights:

  • A Manipur journalist was sentenced to a year's detention under the National Security Act today, nearly a month after he was taken into custody for allegedly targeting the ruling BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a social media post.

  • According to the government, 39-year-old Kishore chandra Wangkhem was initially detained on November 27 to "prevent him from acting in any matter prejudicial to the security of the state and maintenance of public order".

  • The reason for his detention was a Facebook video that showed him criticising Chief Minister N Biren Singh as well as PM Modi.
South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha arrived India

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Key Highlights:

  • South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha arrived in New Delhi on a two-day visit to the country. She is in India at the invitation of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to co-chair the ninth meeting of India-Republic of Korea (ROK) Joint Commission.

  • The two foreign ministers will review the progress in multifaceted cooperation under the Special Strategic Partnership between the two countries.
Railways launches new EMU train with 130 kmph speed

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Key Highlights:

  • The Integral Coach Factory (ICF) rolled out the mini version of Train 18 as it launched the new generation Mainline Electrical Multiple Unit (MEMU) with underslung equipment and some features from the Train 18.

  • Train 18, a creation of the ICF is India’s first modern semi-high speed train set which is currently under speed trials. MEMUs cater to short distance intercity day travel. The coaches of the new MEMU underslung are longer at 23.1m against 21.3m in the older MEMU.

  • These new MEMUs which are capable of running at around 130 kilometres an hour also equipped with a CCTV surveillance system both inside the coaches and outside the driver’s cab, a Talk Back system to enable passengers to talk to the driver in case of emergency and a GPS based passenger information and announcement system.
Government Forms Committee For Cadre Review, Restructuring Of Income Tax Department

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Key Highlights:

  • A fresh cadre review and restructuring of the Income Tax department has been ordered by the government with an aim to create a “caring but strict” direct taxes regime in the country.

  • The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), that frames policy for the I-T department, ordered creation of a 12-member committee of senior officials to accomplish the task within the next three months.

  • The committee, chaired by Delhi-based Principal Director General of Income Tax, S K Dash, will also suggest ways to “bring about rationalisation of the organisational structure for enhancing the effectiveness of the department through improved efficiency and morale of its workforce”.
Jammu and Kashmir to come under President’s rule from 20th December

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Key Highlights:

  • President’s rule will be imposed in Jammu and Kashmir from 20 December with President Ram Nath Kovind signing a proclamation to give effect to the recommendation of the state Governor Satya Pal Malik. Kovind has signed the proclamation based on the proposal sent by the ministry following a report by the state governor.

  • The term of Governor’s Rule, imposed in the state in June this year, comes to an end.

  • Under the provisions of Jammu and Kashmir Constitution, Governor’s rule can be imposed for six months, but with consent of the President. The Constitution grants special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

shape Banking

Indian millionaires lead wealth growth in Asia Pacific, but stick to safe investments

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Key Highlights:

  • While there is no clearly defined level of wealth to determine who fits into the category, those with a net worth of $1 million or more are generally considered HNWIs.

  • Business consulting firm Capgemini’s recent Asia-Pacific Wealth Report for 2018 revealed that wealth of Indian high net-worth individuals (HNWIs) rose to nearly 22% in 2017 compared to the previous year. This is the fastest growth in the region for the particular period.
Banks may remain closed for 5 days due to holidays, strikes in December

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Key Highlights:

  • Ahead of the strike called by the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU) on December 26, one of the bank officers' union has called a strike on December 21, demanding unconditional mandate for the XIth bipartite wage revision talks.

  • In the wake of strikes and holidays, the banks will remain closed from next Friday to Wednesday, except Monday and the banking services could adversely be affected on these days.
RBI minutes show food deflation had MPC befuddled

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Key Highlights:

  • Indians and even Indian policymakers have hardly ever witnessed food deflation. The recent collapse in food prices caught them off-guard and the surprise was visible in the minutes of the latest monetary policy committee meeting.

  • All six members of the committee stated that the food deflation was a surprising development, which made headline retail inflation undershoot previous forecasts of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
Reliance Communications, Jio officials meet telecom secretary to resolve issues around spectrum trading deal

Source: Cick Here

Key Highlights:

  • Senior officials of debt-ridden Reliance Communications and new telecom operator Reliance Jio met Telecom Secretary Aruna Sundararajan to resolve issues flagged by the Department of Telecom (DoT) around payment related to the spectrum sale deal between the two firms.

  • According to sources, the DoT maintained its stance that the deal cannot be cleared unless it gets clarity on payment of dues and associated charges.

shape Sports

PKL: Bengaluru Bulls beat Telugu Titans, enter play-offs

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Key Highlights:

  • Bengaluru Bulls notched up a thumping 44-28 victory over Telugu Titans in a Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) clash in Panchkula.

  • The victory ensured that Bengaluru Bulls have now qualified for the play-offs.

  • Pawan Sehrawat continued his fine form and got another super 10 and top scored with 13 points. It was a solid defensive performance by the Bulls.
SAI clarifies ace shooter Heena Sidhu's exclusion from TOPS list

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Key Highlights:

  • Sports Authority of India (SAI) released their latest 29-member list of athletes under the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) last week, the decision to keep ace shooter Heena Sidhu on the watchlist till the World Cup in February came as a surprise to many, including her team management.

  • According to SAI, the performance of the athletes have been reviewed before their inclusion. If that’s the case, the 29-year-old had a fair amount of success this year. She had won a gold and silver at the Commonwealth Games and a bronze at the Asian Games.

shape Awards

Pakistan activist Asma Jahangir honoured with top UN human rights award

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Key Highlights:

  • The top United Nations human rights prize, which was posthumously awarded to Pakistan’s iconic human rights activist and lawyer Asma Jahangir, was received by her daughter, Munizae, at an impressive ceremony in the General Assembly hall of United Nations.

  • The award and a plaque were handed over to Munizae Jahangir, a journalist and human rights activist herself, by the President of the General Assembly, Maria Fernanda Espinosa.

  • Jahangir was an outspoken critic of Pakistan’s powerful military establishment and she fought against religious extremism and for the rights of oppressed minorities in Pakistan.

  • Asma Jahangir was one of the four winners of the award which was announced by the United Nations in October and is given once in every five years since 1968.

  • The three others who received the awards were: Ms. Rebeca Gyumi (Tanzania), Ms. Joenia Wapichana (Brazil) and Front Line Defenders (Irish organization).

  • The award was given at the event organised to commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, marked annually on December 10.
Indian Film Period: End of Sentence Made It to Oscars Shortlist

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Key Highlights:

  • ‘Period. End of Sentence’ made it to the Oscar shortlist in the Documentary Short Subject category.

  • This is a film about women in India fighting against the deeply rooted stigma of menstruation and delving upon the work of real-life ‘Pad Man’ Arunachalam Muruganantham. A total of 104 films had originally qualified in the category.

shape Appointments

Ashok Kumar appointed as the next Ambassador of India to the Republic of Djibouti
Key Highlights:

  • Ashok Kumar was appointed as the next Ambassador of India to the Republic of Djibouti.

  • He is presently Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs.
Mohinder Pratap Singh appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Mongolia

Source: Cick Here

Key Highlights:

  • Mohinder Pratap Singh was appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Mongolia.

  • He is presently Director at Headquarters of the Ministry of External Affairs.
Belgium’s PM Charles Michel resigns

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Key Highlights:

  • Belgium’s Prime Minister Charles Michel announced his resignation from the post. Calls for his resignation were made on December 16 when over 5,500 anti-migration protestors took to the streets in Brussels to demonstrate against Belgium being a signatory to the non-binding UN pact, the ‘Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration’.

  • The far-right N-VA party had pulled out from the coalition government in protest of the Prime Minister’s decision to sign the UN pact on migration, leaving the Michel-led government in jeopardy.

shape Science

ISRO launches the GSAT – 7A satellite from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh

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Key Highlights:

  • Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) launched 2250 kg military communication satellite GSAT-7A from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh. GSAT-7A is the 35th Indian Communication satellite.

  • GSAT-7A is the first satellite built primarily for Indian Air Force to qualitatively unify its assets and improve combined, common intelligence during operation.

  • The Satellite will improve the way Indian Air Force (IAF) interlinks, operates and communicates with its aircrafts during flight with the help of command centres on ground.

  • The satellite will use “Ku band” for superior real time aircraft to aircraft communications.

  • Space Vehicle, GSLV-F11 (Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle) is used to release the satellite to an eventful geostationary orbit about 36000 km from the Earth.
88% graphene yield from discarded dry Cell Batteries: Researchers

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Key Highlights:

  • Researchers at Nagpur-based Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology have developed a new technique to produce high value graphene from discarded dry cells batteries.

  • They have achieved 88% yield of graphene from a single graphite rod.

  • The research results have been published Journal of Hazardous Materials and Bulletin of Material Science.

shape Books

The book ‘Changing India’ written by former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was released

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Key Highlights:

  • The book ‘Changing India’ written by former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was released.

  • It is a set of 6 volumes having a compilation of speeches and writings detailing Mr Singh’s life as an economist as well as his 10-year period at the helm of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance regime.

  • The first volume is titled ‘India’s Export Trends and the Prospects for Self-Sustained Growth’, The second volume ‘Thoughts on Trade and Development’.

  • The third volume is dedicated to ‘The International Economic Order and the Quest for Equity in Development’.

  • The fourth volume focuses on ‘Economic Reforms: 1991 and Beyond’, talking about India’s economic liberalisation, and the fifth volume, which is in two parts, deals with the prime ministerial years from 2004-2014.

  • This final part of the book is titled ‘The Prime Minister Speaks’.

shape Quiz

Q1. Which organisation released the ‘Strategy for New India @75’?
    A. NITI Aayog B. RBI C. Supreme Court D. CBEC Answer: A

Q2. As per the NITI Aayog’s ‘Strategy for New India @75’, Government aims to propel India towards a USD 5 trillion economy by which year?
    A. 2023 B. 2025 C. 2028 D. 2030 Answer: D

Q3. What was India’s rank at the WEF’s Global Gender Gap Index 2018?
    A. 89th B. 95th C. 108th D. 117th Answer: C

Q4. Who was elected as Vice President of FICCI for 2018-19?
    A. Ayaan Khan B. Uday Shankar C. Sushil Verma D. Arun Khosla Answer: B

Q5. Which among the following is an online health consulation app that has been launched in UP to provide healthcare to people living in the countryside?
    A. UMANG B. BHIM C. Saathi D. MyGov Answer: C

Q6. This former captain of the Indian National Kabaddi team announced his retirement on December 19, 2018?
    A. Rahul Chaudhari B. Pardeep Narwal C. Manjeet Chillar D. Anup Kumar Answer: D

Q7. Scientists belonging to which space exploration agency have detected the evidence of water in 17 asteroids?
    A. JAXA B. NASA C. Roscosmos D. CNSA Answer: A

Q8. The President’s rule was imposed on which Indian state on December 20, 2018?
    A. Telangana B. Assam C. Gujarat D. Jammu and Kashmir Answer: D

Q9. Which state has emerged as the best performing state in start-up ranking 2018?
    A. Telangana B. Odisha C. Gujarat D. Maharashtra Answer: C

Q10. The Postage Stamp on Rajkumar Shukla was released by India Postto mark which historical event?
    A. Champaran Satyagraha B. Dandi March C. Quit India Movement D. Non-Cooperation Movement Answer: A

Q11. Where did Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu inaugurate a three-day conference on Soft Power, on 17th December 2018?
    A. Kolkata B. New Delhi C. Mumbai D. Bengaluru Answer: B

Q12. Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD) signed a MoU with which company for training rural youth for skill development under Deendayal upadhyaya grameen kaushalya yojana (Ddu-Gky), on 19th December 2018?
    A. Maruti Suzuki India Ltd B. Infosys Limited C. Google India Limited D. Tata Motors Limited Answer: A

Q13. Name the author of the book “Timeless Laxman”, written on famous cartoonist RK Laxman, released by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Maharashtra, on 18th December 2018?
    A. Usha Srinivas Laxman B. Jayanti Laxman C. Manish Chawla D. Suchampa Bhaji Answer: A

Q14. Chief Minister of Odisha, Naveen Patnaik, announced financial aid of Rs 10 Crore for the establishment of Odiya Cultural Centre, in which city on 17th December 2018?
    A. Cuttack, Odisha B. Surat, Gujarat C. Mumbai, Maharashtra D. New Delhi, Delhi Answer: B

Q15. Where did the high-level meeting between Indian and Indonesian Coast Guard conclude on 17th December 2018?
    A. Mumbai B. Ahmedabad C. New Delhi D. Visakhapatnam Answer: C

Q16. Which Union Ministry has released the drafts of a new child protection policy, which would be the first policy dedicated to the protection of children which was earlier under National Child Policy 2013?
    A. Ministry of Home Affairs B. Ministry of Health and Family Welfare C. Ministry of Women and Child Development D. Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment Answer: C

Q17. Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the ‘Republic’ Summit, organized by Republic TV, in _____, on 18th December 2018?
    A. New Delhi B. Hyderabad C. Bengaluru D. Mumbai Answer: D

Q18. Where was National Cancer Institute (NCI), the largest cancer hospital of India, built at a cost of Rs 2035 crore, opened for public, on 18th December 2018?
    A. Mohali, Punjab B. Jhajjar, Haryana C. Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh D. Haridwar, Uttarakhand Answer: B

Q19. Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the Foundation Stone of Thane-Bhiwandi-Kalyan Metro and the Dahisar-Mira-Bhayander Metro, worth ____ rupees in Kalyan, Maharashtra, on 18th December 2018?
    A. Rs 45,000 crores B. Rs 33,000 crores C. Rs 28,000 crores D. Rs 67,000 crores Answer: B

Q20. The Central Government has set up National Medical Devices Promotion Council (NMDPC) to tackle patient safety and pricing on Medical Devices, under which Union Ministry?
    A. Ministry of Health and Family Welfare B. Ministry of Finance C. Ministry of Commerce and Industry D. Ministry of Human Resource Development Answer: C

Q21. Manoj Sinha, Union Minister of state (Independent charge) for communication and Minister of state for Railways, released a postage stamp on Rajkumar Shukla in ____, on 18th December 2018?
    A. Mumbai B. Patna C. New Delhi D. Rajkot Answer: C

Q22. NeVA Project implemented by Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs aims to introduce Paperless Assembly or e-Assembly. What does “A” represent in NeVA?
    A. Assembly B. Act C. Application D. Association Answer: C

Q23. The _____ round of India – South Korea Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) negotiations, was held from 11th to 13th December 2018, in South Korea?
    A. Fifth B. Second C. Fourth D. Seventh Answer: D

Q24. Name the compact adopted by United Nations General Assembly on 17th December 2018, as it agreed upon a framework affirming international solidarity and cooperation for refugee protection and host community development?
    A. Compact for Refugee Protection B. Compact for Migrant Workers’ Protection C. Global Compact on Refugees D. Global Compact on Migrant population and refugees Answer: C

Q25. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has announced to raise the quantum of bilateral trade between India and South Korea to ____ by 2030, as decided in the 9th India-Korea Joint Commission Meeting held in New Delhi?
    A. 90 billion dollars B. 50 billion dollars C. 70 billion dollars D. 35 billion dollars Answer: B

Q26. Name Pakistan’s human rights activist who was posthumously awarded the UN (United Nations) Human Rights Prize for 2018, in New York, on 18th December 2018?
    A. Munizae Kalam B. Safia Al Hamid C. Asma Jahangir D. Razia Samir Answer: C

Q27. Who was appointed as the new Chairman of Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) with effect from January 1, 2019?
    A. Rajiv Mishra B. Anita Nair C. S Paramesh D. Pranab Kumar Das Answer: D

Q28. Name the interim chief of Central Bureau Investigation (CBI) who was promoted to the rank of Additional Director with immediate effect, on 18th December 2018?
    A. Atul Kulkarni B. Aryan Sharma C. Manpreet Singh D. M Nageswara Rao Answer: D

Q29. ___ was appointed the first full-time Chief Vigilance Officer (CVO) of SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India) for an initial period of 3 years, on 17th December 2018?
    A. Arti Chhabra Srivastava B. Veena Naik C. Subash Mukthi Singh D. Lal Chandra Nath Answer: A

Q30. Who was appointed the next Ambassador of India to the Republic of Djibouti, on 19th December 2018?
    A. Sheena Prakash B. Ashok Kumar C. Surya Dev Nath D. Rashmi Mondal Answer: B

Q31. Name the Belgium Prime Minister who resigned amid pressure on his government because of his support for the UN global pact on migration, on 18th December 2018?
    A. Rufus Mikovich B. Charles Michel C. Marshal Gallagher D. Daniel Silverado Answer: B

Q32. _____ was appointed the next Ambassador of India to Mongolia, on 19th December 2018?
    A. Asraful Khan B. Mohinder Pratap Singh C. Sreeram Kumar R D. Vijay Mittal Answer: B

Q33. IDFC Bank merged with non-banking financial company Capital First resulting in a merged entity IDFC First Bank to be headquartered in Mumbai. Who will the MD and CEO of IDFC First Bank?
    A. V Vaidyanathan B. Rajiv Lall C. Mahesh Kumar D. R Srinivasan Answer: A

Q34. Name the 2250 kg military communication satellite launched by Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) from Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh, on 19th December 2018, which is also the 39th Indian Communication satellite?
    A. GSAT-7A B. GSAT-6A C. GSAT-29C D. GSAT-11C Answer: A

Q35. Which state government launched ‘Shiksha Setu’ mobile App to provide information on attendance, fee, online admission and scholarships of the state’s government colleges to students, on 18th December 2018?
    A. Maharashtra B. Goa C. Tamil Nadu D. Haryana Answer: D

Q36. Researchers at _____ institute have developed a new technique to produce high value graphene with 88 % graphene yield from discarded dry cell batteries?
    A. Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi B. Visvesvaraya National Institute of Technology, Nagpur C. MS Ramiah Institute of Technology, Bengaluru D. Indira Gandhi Institute of Technology (IGIT), New Delhi Answer: B

Q37. Who is the author of the book ‘Changing India’ that was released on December 19, 2018?
    A. Arun Jaitley B. Narendra Modi C. Manmohan Singh D. Sachin Tendulkar Answer: C

Q38. When was 57th Goa Liberation Day celebrated?
    A. December 17 B. December 18 C. December 19 D. December 20 Answer: C
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