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BHIM becomes most popular Android app in India

  • i.Govt's online payments app, BHIM is now the number one free app on Google Play Store. The app was launched by PM Modi to simplify digital payments. 
  • ii.The app, with a rating of 4.2, has been downloaded more than 1 million times.Within 48 hours of being launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the app named BHIM was India’s most-popular, registering the maximum downloads of any free Android app in India. 
  • iii.The app was launched on 30 December 2016, to simplify digital payments. The app has already been downloaded 3 million times. 
  • iv.BHIM - which stands for Bharat Interface for Money - is named after Dr BR Ambedkar.

Birth Anniversary of Savitribai Phule: 3 January

  • i.Hailed as the country's first woman teacher, Savitribai Phule was also a social worker and a poet. Born on January 3, 1831, in Maharashtra's Naigaon. 
  • ii.2017 marks her 186th birth year. Savitribai Phule is credited with laying the foundation of education opportunities for women in India and played a major role in improving women's rights in the country during the British Raj. 
  • iii.Many of her poems were against discrimination and spoke about the need to get educated. She campaigned against untouchability, Sati tradition, child marriage and other social evils most of her life.

India 3rd among nations offering highest salaries to expats

  • i.India has ranked third among the countries offering the highest average annual salary to expatriates, according to HSBC Holdings data. 
  • ii.Notably, Switzerland offers an average salary of $188,275 a year to expats, the highest in the world and almost twice the global average. 
  • iii.Further, the best employment packages, including health benefits, are found in Middle East countries like Bahrain.

PM inaugurate Indian Science Congress at Tirupati

  • i.Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurate the five-day annual Indian Science Congress at the Sri Venkateswara University.
  • ii.‘Science and Technology for National Development’ would be the focal theme of the Indian Science Congress, Prof D Narayana Rao, General President of Indian Science Congress Association (ISCA).

Chandrababu Naidu Launches Arogya Raksha Scheme to cover APL Families

  • Chandrababu Naidu, Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh has launched a new health scheme, Arogya Raksha Scheme Tummalapalli Kalakshetram in Vijayawada to provide the medical treatment to the people of the Above Poverty Line at Rs. 1200 premium per annum

Banks cut base rates: home, corporate loans to be cheaper

  • i.Housing, auto and corporate loans are all set to become cheaper with half a dozen PSU and private banks steeply reducing benchmark lending rate by up to 1.48% after spurt in deposits following demonetization.
  • ii.Taking a cue from State Bank of India, other lenders including largest private sector lender ICICI Bank and state-owned Oriental Bank of Commerce and Andhra Bank announced a cut in the marginal cost of funds based lending rate (MCLR).
  • iii.SBI along with PNB and Union Bank of India, yesterday reduced the lending rate by a good 0.9% after Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his new year eve address urged the banks to focus on the needs of poor and lower middle class and middle class.

Centre launches mobile app for Haj applications

Minister of State for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi has launched mobile app 'Haj Committee of India', which will provide information and facilitate e-payments for Haj pilgrimage.

Maharashtra government to organise Digi Dhan Mela in Mumbai

  • i.Maharashtra government will organise a Digi Dhan Mela in Mumbai under the aegis of central government’s Lucky Grahak Yojana for Consumers and Digi-Dhan Vyapar Yojana for traders. 
  • ii.The day-long event, to be held at Mumbai University, aims to promote digital payment methods and inculcate a digital payment habit among all citizens.

Maharashtra Government Bans use of Purse Seine Nets for Fishing

  • i.Maharashtra Government has declared to ban the use of Purse Seine Nets for fishing across Maharashtra to safeguard the Fingerlings, a fish species. 
  • ii.The move is aimed at curbing the exploitation of fish by safeguarding the fingerlings and its eggs to increase their population. 

David R Syiemlieh appointed new UPSC chairman

  • i.David R Syiemlieh has been appointed today as the Chairman of the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).
  • ii. An official statement said President Pranab Mukherjee has appointed Prof David R Syiemlieh, Member, Union Public Service Commission, with effect from January 4, 2017 till furtherOrder.
  • iii.He will take over from Alka Sirohi, a former IAS officer of the Madhya Pradesh cadre.

Pakistan approves Hindu marriage bill

  • i.The Senate Functional Committee on Human Rights unanimously approved the Hindu Marriages Bill on 2nd January 2017
  • ii.The much-awaited bill to regulate marriages of minority Hindus in Pakistan moved closer to reality after a Senate committee approved the landmark draft legislation, nearly four months after it was passed by the National Assembly.
  • iii.The bill will enable the Hindu community members to get their marriages registered. It will become a law after it will be passed by the Senate, the upper house of the Parliament.

Amazon Wins Patent for Flying Warehouse to Deliver Parcels via Drones

  • i.The U.S. e-commerce giant, Amazon has been awarded a patent for launching a giant flying warehouse that would act as a launch pad for drones to deliver items within minutes.
  • ii.The U.S. e-commerce giant described plans for an "airborne fulfilment centre" (AFC) such as an airship or blimp that would float at an altitude of around 45,000. 
  • iii.The airship will be stocked with lots of products

Russia delivers Sukhoi jets to China

  • i.Russia has finally delivered four Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets to China after a delay of two years.
  • ii. The Su-35 is an advanced version of the Su-30s operated by the Indian Air Force.

Karnataka Minister H S Mahadeva Prasad dies at 58

  • i.Karnataka minister for co-operation and sugar H S Mahadeva Prasad passed away in Bangalore due to cardiac arrest. He was 58 years old.
  • ii.Halahalli Shreekantha Shetti Mahadeva Prasad was the Minister for Co-operation and Sugar in Government of Karnataka.
  • iii.An active Congressman and five term member of Karnataka Legislative Assembly representing Gundlupet assembly constituency, prasad was also the In Charge Minister of Chamarajanagar District. 

Table tennis Olympic champion Li Xiaoxia announces retirement

  • i.China's table tennis Olympic champion Li Xiaoxia has announced her retirement.
  • ii.She is the eighth table tennis Grand Slam winner in history with singles crowns from the 2008 World Cup in Kuala Lumpur, 2012 Olympics in London and 2013 world championships in Paris. 
  • iii.She also has several doubles and teams world titles
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