04 October 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

04 October 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

04 October 2019 - Daily Current Affairs

1. RBI Fourth Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Review 2019-20

  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in its fourth bi-monthly monetary policy review on 4th October 2019, reduced the policy repo rate under the Liquidity Adjustment Facility (LAF) by 25 basis points to 5.15 percent from 5.40 percent with immediate effect.
  • The MPC on its 4th bimonthly meeting has also decided to continue with an accommodative stance as long as it is necessary to revive growth while ensuring that inflation remains within the target.
  • The key highlights of the bi-monthly monetary policy review is as follows: 
  1. The Repo Rate under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) reduced by 25 basis points to 5.15 percent from 5.40 percent with immediate effect.
  2. Consequently, the reverse repo rate under the LAF stands reduced to 4.90 percent.
  3. The Bank Rate and the Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) rate are reduced to 5.40 percent.
  4. Reserve Bank of India has also reduced the Real GDP Growth for 2019-20 from 6.9% to 6.1%.
  5. The RBI kept reserved rates such as CRR and SLR unchanged at 4 percent and  18.75% percent respectively.
  6. The RBI also retains retail inflation projection for the second half of year at 3.5-3.7%

 2. Axis Bank launches short-term online fixed deposits

  • India’s third-largest private sector bank, the Axis Bank has announced the launch of ‘Express FD’, a digital fixed deposit (FD) product.
  • It allows the customer to open an FD account in three minutes through the digital mode without opening a savings account with the bank.
  • ‘Express FD’ offers attractive interest rates, zero issuance fees and no penalty on pre-mature withdrawal of up to 25% of the amount.
  • A customer can open an Express FD account by investing a minimum Rs 5,000 up to Rs 90,000, for a tenure of 6 to 12 months.

  National Affairs

3. Tata Communications names Amur Lakshminarayanan as MD, Group CEO designate

  • Digital infrastructure provider Tata Communications has named Amur S Lakshminarayanan as Managing Director and Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO) designate of the company.
  • As MD and CEO Designate, Lakshminarayanan will advise the interim management committee of Tata Communications. Upon receipt of necessary regulatory approvals, the Board of Tata Communications will subsequently appoint Lakshminarayanan as the MD and CEO of Tata Communications.
  • Lakshminarayanan comes with 35 years of experience in a broad range of leadership roles across industries and regions across the world, the company said in a statement.
  • Before this appointment, he served as President and CEO of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) Japan, Ltd. He also worked as the Global Head of Telecom, Media and Information Services, HiTech and Utilities, and Head of TCS UK and Europe.
 Source: Business Line

4. Ministry of Tourism launches Audio Guide facility App "Audio Odigos" for 12 sites of India

  • On occasion of "Paryatan Parv 2019" Ministry of Tourism has launched the Audio Guide facility Audio Odigos for 12 sites of India (including Iconic Sites).
  • Audio Guide: Audio Odigos, offers Government of India verified content, with visuals & voice over support. With Audio Odigos, tourists will now enjoy a more enriching experience and take back historical insights into the Indian culture and heritage.
  • The Audio Odigos app contains an inbuilt map of the site for a smooth navigation during the tour.
  • Listeners will be offered various versions of history like Synopsis, Detailed History and Podcasts.
  • The audio can be chosen in their preferred language & version of history.
 Source: PIB

5. Prime Minister Narendra Modi declares India open defecation-free

  • On the occasion of the 150th birth anniversary of Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared India as Open Defecation Free (ODF).
  • On 02nd October, the 'Swachh Bharat Divas' program was organized in Sabarmati, Ahmedabad where PM Modi announced the country to be open defecation free.
  • During the event, the PM Modi released commemorative Rs 150 coins on Mahatma Gandhi's 150th birth anniversary.
  • The status of Open Defecation Free (ODF) was achieved by India through the massive sanitation programme, Swachh Bharat Mission, under which, crores of toilets were built especially in poor households. 
  • According to the PM Modi, under the massive, Swachh Bharat Mission India has built almost 11 crore toilets for about 60 crore people in just a period of 60 months.
Note:
  • Open defecation means defecating outside in the open environment and not in a designated toilet. 
Swachh Bharat Mission
  • The Prime Minister, Narendra Modi launched the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) on 2nd October 2014 to accelerate the efforts to achieve universal sanitation coverage in India and promote access to safe sanitation in India.
  • The SBM aims at achieving an Open Defecation Free (ODF) nation by 2nd October 2019, a befitting tribute to Mahatma Gandhi on his 150thbirth anniversary.
Awards and Honours

6. Kyrgyz human rights lawyer wins UNHCR Nansen Refugee Award

  • Azizbek Ashurov, A Kyrgyz human rights lawyer whose work has supported the efforts of the Kyrgyz Republic in becoming the first country in the world to end statelessness has been selected as the 2019 winner of the UN Refugee Agency’s Nansen Refugee Award.
  • Azizbek Ashurov, through his organization Ferghana Valley Lawyers Without Borders (FVLWB), has helped well over 10,000 people to gain Kyrgyz nationality after they became stateless following the dissolution of the Soviet Union.
  • Statelessness affects millions of people worldwide, depriving them of legal rights or basic services and leaving them politically and economically marginalized, discriminated against and particularly vulnerable to exploitation and abuse.
Note:
  • UNHCR’s Nansen Refugee Award honours extraordinary service to the forcibly displaced.
  • The award includes a commemorative medal and a US$150,000 monetary prize generously donated by the governments of Switzerland and Norway.
  • In close consultation with UNHCR, the laureate uses the monetary prize to fund a project that complements their existing work.

Sports News

7. Ben Stokes named PCA player of the year

  • England allrounder Ben Stocks has been named as the players' player of the year at the Professional Cricketers' Association Awards.
  • All-rounder Stokes played a starring role in England's maiden ICC World Cup 2019.
  • He also played a heroic role to help salvage an Ashes draw with Australia.
  • Somerset's Tom Banton picked up the PCA Young Player of the Year, while England bowler Sophie Ecclestone collected the Women's Player of the Summer.

8. India gets its first-ever floating basketball court in Mumbai

  • The National Basketball Association installed India's first-ever floating basketball court in Mumbai.
  • The basketball court set up in the Arabian Sea near the Bandra-Worli Sealink.

India’s first NBA Game to be held in October 

  • The first NBA game is scheduled to host from October 4 to October 5 in the SVP Stadium at Dome, NSCI, in Mumbai.
  • The matches will be played under the Reliance Foundation Junior NBA program.
  • Under this, the match will be played between the Sacramento Kings and Indiana Pacers.

State News

9. Jaipur topped the list of cleanest railway stations in the country

  •  According to the ‘Swachh Rail, Swachh Bharat 2019’ report, Jaipur topped the list of the cleanest railway station in India.
  • Three railway stations of Rajasthan have been included in the list of top clean railway stations in the country.
  • In the Railway Cleanliness Survey conducted by the Ministry of Railways, Jaipur Junction has come first, Jodhpur railway station ranked second and Durgapura railway station ranked at the third spot.
  • A total of 720 stations and were included in the survey. 
  • Since 2016, cleanliness survey is carried out by the Quality Council of India (QCI), an independent body.

Key points of the report 

  • Jaipur ranked first with the overall cleanliness score of 931.75; Jodhpur got the second rank with a score of 927.19 and Durgapura scored 922.50 out of 1,000.
  • Anand Vihar Terminal in the national capital stood at 26th place while New Delhi and Hazrat Nizamuddin station were ranked 165th and 241st respectively in the list.
Top 10 cleanest railway station - The top ten railway stations include seven cities of Rajasthan.
  1. Jaipur (Rajasthan)
  2. Jodhpur (Rajasthan)
  3. Durgapura (Rajasthan)
  4. Jammu Tawi 
  5. Gandhinagar  (Jaipur district)
  6. Suratgarh (Rajasthan)
  7. Vijayawada
  8. Udaipur (Rajasthan)
  9. Ajmer (Rajasthan)
  10. Haridwar

Suburban stations

  • Suburban stations were included for the first time in this survey.
  • Andheri, Virar and Naigaon railway stations were the top three among 109 suburban stations.

Best railway zone

  • The North Western Railway (NWR), headquartered in Jaipur, has been ranked the best among the 17 railway zones in the country. 
  •  South Eastern Railway ranked second place was and East Central Railway ranked at the third spot on the list.

10. Meghalaya govt. signed agreement with Dalmia Cement to turn plastic waste into Fuel

  •  The Meghalaya state government signed an agreement with Dalmia Cement a cement company, to make the state plastic-free by 2022.
  • The objective of this agreement is to turn plastic waste into fuel for their cement plants and at the same time ensure that all the environmental standards are maintained.
  • The agreement was signed during an official programme in Shillong to mark the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.

About Meghalaya 

  • Meghalaya Capital - Shillong
  • Meghalaya Chief Minister - Conrad Sangma
  • Meghalaya Governor - Tathagata Roy

11. Rajasthan bans certain categories of pan masala

  • The Rajasthan government on September 2 announced a ban on paan masala containing magnesium carbonate, nicotine, tobacco, mineral oil and flavouredsupari’ in the state.
  • All such products will now be banned in the State under the Food Safety Act. This is an important decision taken to curb addiction among youth.
  • Production, storage, distribution and sale of these products will not be allowed in the State.
  • With this, Rajasthan has become the third state after Maharashtra and Bihar to announce such a move.
About Rajasthan
  • Rajasthan Capital - Jaipur
  • Rajasthan Chief Minister - Ashok Gahlot
  • Rajasthan Governor - Kalraj Mishra
Source: The Hindu

International News

12. Singapore is the world's smartest city: IMD Smart City Index

  •  According to the IMD Smart City Index, Singapore is the smartest city in the world.
  • The first edition of the IMD Smart City Index 2019 ranks 102 cities worldwide.
  • Zurich ranked second and Oslo is the third smartest city in the world.
  • The other smartest cities in the list are Geneva (4th), Copenhagen (5th), Auckland (6th), Taipei City (7th), Helsinki (8th), Bilbao (9th) and Dusseldorf (10th).
  • Singapore is only one of two Asian cities to be in the Top 10 of 102 cities. Taipei is the other at No. 7.
  • The index assesses a city’s efforts and success in embracing smart technologies to improve the lives of its citizens, thus being able to rate each city on a certain level of ‘smartness’.

Indian cities in the index

  • Indian city Hyderbad ranked 67 in the list, while the capital of India, New Delhi is the 68th smart city in the world.
  • On the other hand, Mumbai is the 78th and Bengaluru is the 79th smart city in the world.
Note:
  • The SCI is released by the IMD World Competitiveness Center’s Smart City Observatory on 3 October 2019, in partnership with Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD).

13. Palestine issues a commemorative stamp to honour Gandhi on 150th birth anniversary

  •  Palestine issued a commemorative postage stamp on the occasion of the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi with an aim of honouring Gandhi's "heritage and values".
  • The Minister of Telecommunications and Information Technology of the Palestine Authority (PA), Ishaq Sadar, released the ticket in the presence of Sunil Kumar, India's representative in the PA.
Note:
  • Palestine capital - Ramallah, East Jerusalem
  • Palestine currency - Palestinians have no currency of their own and use the euro, U.S. dollar, Israeli shekel and Jordanian dinar in their daily lives.

14. Global Firepower Index: Indian military strongest in South Asia

  • In the Global Firepower's 2019 Military Strength Ranking, the Indian military has been ranked as the strongest military power in South Asia.
  • While Pakistan has been ranked second and Bangladesh is ranked the third most powerful military power in South Asia.
  • In the world ranking, the United States has topped the list, followed by Russia, and China.
  • India has been ranked in 4th position, Pakistan at 15th, Myanmar at 37th, Afghanistan at 74th, Sri Lanka at 90th, Nepal at 120th, and Bhutan has been ranked at 137th- a least strong country in the world, as per the index.
  • The military strengths of 137 countries in total have been considered in the GFP.

15. Japan Launches "World's Biggest Transport Space Ship" For Space Station

  • Japan has launched an unmanned spacecraft towards the International Space Station.
  • The H-2B rocket lifted off at 1:05 am local time (1605 GMT Tuesday) with cargo vessel Kounotori8.
  • The launch took place from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's Tanegashima Space Center in southwestern Japan.
  • Kounotori8, meaning "white stork" in Japanese, intends to deliver about 5.3 tonnes of supplies to astronauts at the ISS, including fresh food and water as well as batteries and devices needed for experiments.
Source: The NDTV
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