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India launches South Asia Satellite GSAT-9


  • The Indian Space Research Organization(ISRO) has launched the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) carrying GSAT-9, from Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh.
  • The main goal of the GSAT-9 satellite is to provide communication channels and meet the telecommunication needs of the SAARC nations.
  • Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has gifted the South Asia Satellite project to the SAARC nations.

Note:
  • The satellite weighing 2230 kilogram during lift off and carrying 12 Ku-Band transponders has been developed at a cost of about 235-crore rupees by ISRO.
  • The total cost of the project including the launch is about 450-crore rupees.
  • The intended operational life of the satellite is more than 12 years.

Union HRD Ministry appointed new ICSSR chairman


  • The union Human Resource Development ministry has appointed 'Braj Bihari Kumar' (76-year) as the new chairman of the Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) for a term of three years.
  • He replaces noted economist K Thorat (heading Since April 2011).
  • ‘Braj Bihari Kumar’ is the editor of quarterly journals Dialogue and Chintan Srijan.

Note: Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) was established in the year of 1969 by the Government of India to promote research in social sciences in the country.

Prabhat Kamal Bezboruah appointed as Chairman of Tea Board of India


  • ‘Prabhat Kamal Bezboruah’ has been appointed as the Chairman of the Tea Board of India (till November 2018).
  • With this, he has become the first non-IAS and the first industry insider to head Tea Board.
  • Renowned coffee grower ‘M S Boje Gowda’ has been appointed as Chairman of the Coffee Board of India (till December 2018).
  • Recently, the union govt. has notified that all agricultural boards under the Ministry of Commerce will be headed by a non-IAS and industry person while the Vice-Chairman will be an IAS and have the executive authority.

Note:
  • The Tea Board of India is a state agency of the Government of India established to promote the cultivation, processing, and domestic trade as well as export of tea from India.
  • It was established by the enactment of the Tea Act in 1953 with its headquarters in Kolkata.

China to launch its own encyclopedia as a rival to Wikipedia


  • China has the plan to launch its own online encyclopedia next year rivaling Wikipedia and Britannica (Britain’s Encyclopaedia).
  • The main objective of this project is to guide public thought.
  • China fears that its citizens who use Wikipedia are being corrupted by foreign influences.
  • Around 20,000 scholars and academics have been tasked to create more than 300,000 entries before launch in 2018.


Quikr acquires home services start-up 'Zimmber'


  • Online classifieds company 'Quikr' has announced the acquisition of on-demand household services provider ‘Zimmber’.
  • 'Zimmber' will benefit from synergies with QuikrServices and other Quikr verticals.
  • Household services is an exciting category which is seeing increasing adoption among urban consumers.
  • 'Zimmber' was founded by Anubhab Goel, Amit Kuma, and Gaurav Shrivastava, and provides on-demand home services like plumbing, carpentry, pest control, deep cleaning, sofa and carpet cleaning, among others.


PM Narendra Modi inaugurates Patanjali Research Institute in Haridwar


  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has inaugurated Patanjali Research Institute at Patanjali Yogpeeth in Haridwar, Uttarakhand.
  • Patanjali Research Institute has been established by Patanjali Yogpeeth with an aim to globally establish the Great Vedic knowledge of Ayurveda of our ancient India's saints and sages.
  • An amount of Rs. 2000 crore was spent on building the Patanjali Research Centre.
  • Patanjali group has become the third-largest fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) player (behind ITC and Hindustan Unilever’s) in the country, surpassing firms like NestlĂ©, Godrej Consumer, Britannia, and Dabur.


Over 2 crore LPG connections given under Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana


  • According to the Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas ‘Dharmendra Pradhan’, more than 2 crore LPG connections were given under Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana (PMUY) in the last one year.
  • The PMUY) scheme has been implemented across 600 districts in the country and LPG distribution process has been integrated through digital Platforms.
  • 4600 new distributors were added in the last 3 years primarily in the rural areas.
  • Last 3 year saw 10% growth in LPG demand and 38% beneficiaries of the scheme belong to Scheduled Caste (SC) and Scheduled Tribes(ST).


Union Sports Ministry announces changes in National Youth Awards


  • The Union Minister of Youth Affairs & Sports 'Vijay Goel' has revamped the National Youth Awards (NYA) to promote transparency in the selection process.
  • The number of Awards in the Organization category has now been increased from one to ten and the prize money is now two lacks with a Trophy and Certificate.
  • The Union Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports has also released a new logo for the National Youth Awards.


India placed at 100th spot in FIFA Rankings after 21 years


  • First time in 21 years, the Indian men’s football team has made it into the top 100 of the FIFA (International Federation of Association Football) World Rankings.
  • The team is placed at 100th alongside Nicaragua, Lithuania, and Estonia.
  • Last year in Feb 1996, India was placed in the 94th spot (Best FIFA ranking).

Note: The teams of the member nations of FIFA are ranked based on their game results with the most successful teams being ranked highest.
FIFA World Ranking
  1. Brazil
  1. Argentina
  1. Germany
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