22 August 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

22 August 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

22 August 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

1. Senior IAS officer Rajiv Gauba appointed as new Cabinet Secretary

  • Senior Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Rajiv Gauba (1982 batch- Jharkhand cadre) has been appointed as the new Cabinet Secretary for two years (from the end of August 2019).
  • Mr. Gauba will replace P.K. Sinha (1977 batch -UP cadre), who was appointed Cabinet Secretary in 2015.
  • Currently, Mr Gauba is serving as Home Secretary of India.
  • IAS officer Ajay Kumar (1985 batch-Kerala cadre), Secretary, Defence Production, has been shifted as Secretary, Defence.
  • He will replace Sanjay Mitra.
  • Senior IAS officer Another Brij Kumar Agarwal (1985 batch Himachal Pradesh cadre) has been appointed Secretary, Lokpal.
  • The approval was given by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
  • The Cabinet Secretary is the top-most executive official and senior-most civil servant of the Government of India.
  • The Cabinet secretary is the ex-officio head of the Civil Services Board, the cabinet secretariat, the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) and all civil services under the rules of business of the government.
  • The Cabinet Secretary is under the direct charge of the Prime minister.
Important Days

2. 22nd August: International Day Commemorating the Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief

  • United Nations’ International Day Commemorating the Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief is being observed every year on 22nd August.
  • International days are occasions to educate the public on issues of concern, to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems and to celebrate and reinforce the achievements of humanity.
  • The day is observed to strongly condemn continuing violence and acts of terrorism targeting individuals, including persons belonging to religious minorities, based on or in the name of religion or belief.
Source: UN.Org
Banking & Finance

3. Board of trustee okays EPFO exit from DHFL

  • The central board of trustees has allowed the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) to exercise an exit option for recovering the pending Rs 600 crore from Dewan Housing Finance Corporation (DHFL).
  • The proposal to double the minimum pension to Rs 2,000 has been put on hold, with labour minister Santosh Kumar Gangwar suggesting the issue be taken up with the finance ministry.
  • The board also approved the appointment of three fund managers to manage its corpus.
  • The central board of trustees also approved the appointment of UTI AMC and SBI Mutual Fund as its fund managers for a three-year term beginning 1st October 2019.
Source: Economics Times

4. RBI allows recurring transactions up to Rs 2,000 on cards

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will allow customers to make recurring payments of less than Rs. 2000 without the two factors authentication process by giving an e-mandate from September.
  • According to RBI Circular, it has been decided to permit processing of e-mandate on cards for recurring transactions (merchant payments).
  • The move has been made to make digital payments to the merchant, typically at Kirana and grocery stores where ticket sizes are small, more convenient.
  • This circular is applicable for transactions performed using all types of cards (debit or credit).
  • This has been done keeping in view the changing payment needs and the requirement to balance the safety and security of card transactions with customer convenience.
Source: Economics Times

5. BookMyForex partners with YES Bank to launch Forex Card on Visa network

  • BookMyForex.com has announced the launch of a co-branded Multi-Currency Forex Travel-card in partnership with YES Bank and Visa to offer a seamless experience to Indian overseas travellers.
  • Travellers can load up to 10 currencies on the card.
  • Customers can buy forex travel cards using the BookMyForex platform and get free doorstep delivery across major cities in India.
  • BookMyForex is the world’s first and largest marketplace for foreign exchange and remittances.
Source: Business Standard
International Affairs

6. Nepal bans single-use plastics on Everest region

  • Nepalese authorities have banned single-use plastics in the Everest region in a bid to cut down on waste left by climbers (by 2020).
  • It will curb excessive pollution on the highest point of the Earth’s surface.
  • Earlier, International environmentalists have expressed their concern that Nepal has not done enough to protect the fragile environment of the world’s highest peak.
  • Nepal is also marking the “Visit Nepal” campaign next year which aims to draw 2 million foreign visitors.
  • Local households residing in the Khumbu region will be provided with five plastic bags of different types and sizes which they can use for daily activities.
  • Last year, 56,303 foreign trekkers and mountaineers visited the Everest region.
Source: The Hindu
National Affairs

7. HRD Ministry launches NISHTHA initiative to train over 42 lakh teachers

  • The Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’ has launched the National Initiative for School Heads’ and Teachers’ Holistic Advancements (NISHTHA).
  • NISHTHA is the world’s biggest such project and will focus on training 42 lakh teachers from across the country.
  • The objective of the initiative aims to reskill the teaching workforce and is the world’s biggest project for teacher training.
Source: The Hindu Business Line'

8. Punjab launches ‘Mahatma Gandhi Sarbat Sehat Bima Yojana’

  • Chief Minister of Punjab Amarinder Singh has launched a flagship universal health insurance scheme Sarbat Sehat Bima Yojana to mark the 75th birth anniversary of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.
  • The mega health insurance scheme combines Centre’s Ayushman Bharat plan to provide annual cashless treatment up to Rs 5 lakh per family per year, including pre-existing diseases.
  • The scheme with 1,396 treatment packages will be implemented through over 450 empanelled hospitals, including 200 government hospitals.
  • With this, Punjab has become 1st state to offer medical insurance for such a large proportion of its population.
  • It will benefit around 46 lakh families, covering 76% of the state’s population.
Source: The Pioneer

9. Power Minister launches State Rooftop Solar Attractiveness Index

  • Power Minister R K Singh launched the State Rooftop Solar Attractiveness Index -SARAL in New Delhi.
  • As per the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy survey, Karnataka has emerged as the best state for setting up a rooftop solar project according to the State Rooftop Solar Attractiveness Index–SARAL.
  • The state rooftop solar attractiveness index (SARAL) released by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy.
  • Four states (Karnataka, Telangana, Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh) have been graded A++.
  • The state of Jammu and Kashmir has been ranked last.
  • The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has set a target of 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2022.
  • This rating has been designed collaboratively by MNRE, Shakti Sustainable Energy Foundation (SSEF), Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) and Ernst & Young (EY).
Source: Economics Times

10. Amazon opens its largest campus in the world in Hyderabad

  • US-based e-commerce giant Amazon.com Inc. inaugurated its single-largest campus in the world in Hyderabad.
  • The new campus is spread over 9.5 acres and is its largest tech base outside the Seattle headquarters, which has about 155,000 contract employees.
  • The e-commerce firm will house more than 15,000 employees out of the over 62,000 members of the India team.
Source: Live Mint

11. DRDO hands over the design of Mobile Metallic Ramp to Indian Army

  • Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) handed over the design of Mobile Metallic Ramp (MMR) to the Indian Army.
  • With a load-bearing capacity of 70 metric ton (MT), the MMR has been designed and developed by DRDO’s premier research laboratory, Centre for Fire, Explosive and Environment Safety (CFEES).
  • The ramp will provide the strategic mobility for Armoured and Mechanized units and formations of the Army.
  • It is portable, modular in design, which can be easily assembled or disassembled.
Source: Economics Times

12. Five new fish species discovered in Arunachal Pradesh

  • Researchers of the Rajiv Gandhi University in Arunachal Pradesh have discovered five new fish species in various districts of the state.
  • A fisheries and an aquatic ecology research team from the zoology department of Rajiv Gandhi University (RGU) led by Professor DN Das.
  • The scientific names of the newly discovered fish species are Mystus prabini, found in Sinkin and Dibang rivers in Lower Dibang Valley district and Exostoma kottelati, found in Ranga river in Lower Subansiri district.
  • Other discovered species are Creteuchiloglanis tawangensis, found in the Tawangchu river in Tawang district, Garra ranganensis, found in Ranga river and Physoschistura harkishorei, found in Dibang and Lohit rivers.
  • The details of the discovery have been published in various journals of international repute, a release from RGU's zoology department stated.
Source: Times of India

13. Kiren Rijiju, Baichung Bhutia flag off Delhi leg of Op-Blue Freedom

  • Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju and former Indian Football Captain Baichung Bhutia flagged off the Delhi leg of Op-Blue Freedom.
  • This is an initiative in which a group of armed forces veterans train sports enthusiasts in survival training and self-defence.
  • Op-Blue Freedom is a nation-wide adaptive scuba diving programme for people with disabilities as well as the able-bodied.
  • The dive sessions for civilians will be kept open from 22-25 August (from 9 am-5pm) for the civilians.
  • The program aims to train adventure enthusiasts in special forces skills like survival techniques, emergency first response skills, unarmed combat, endurance and fitness.
Source: AIR News

14. Indian men's and women's hockey teams win Olympic Test event at Tokyo

  • Indian Women's and Men's hockey teams have won the Olympic Test event in Tokyo.
  • Women's team defeated Japan 2-1 in the finals.
  • Navjot Kaur hit a goal at the 11th minute while Lalremsiami struck winning goal at 33rd minute of the game for India.
  • Indian men's hockey team also won the Olympic Test event beating New Zealand 5-0.
  • Captain Harmanpreet Singh, Shamsher Singh, Nilakanta Sharma, Gursahibjit Singh and Mandeep Singh scored one goal each for India.
  • The 2019 Ready Steady Tokyo Hockey Tournament was field hockey tournament, consisting of a series of test matches held in Tokyo, Japan.
  • The tournament served as a test event for the field hockey tournament at the 2020 Summer Olympics.
  • The tournament featured four of the top nations in men's field hockey.
Source: AIR News

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