AR Rahman Becomes Sikkim’s Brand Ambassador

  • Music composer AR Rahman became the brand ambassador of Sikkim. The declaration was made by Sikkim CM Pawan Kumar Chamling.
  • It was announced during an inauguration of the 11-day Sikkim Red Panda Winter Carnival at Palzor Stadium in Gangtok.
  • The introduction of A R Rahman as Brand ambassador is to improve sikkim tourism.
  • He will now be campaigning for Sikkim to attract tourists and business for the state.

Minister of Tourism, Sikkim: Ugen T Gyatso Bhutia


Capital: Gangtok

Chief Minister: Pawan Kumar Chamling

Governor: Shriniwas Dadasaheb Patil

Gujarat Tops Logistics Performance Index Chart

  • Gujarat has topped the logistics index chart, according to a Report released by Union Minister for Commerce & Industry.
  • The report was released by Minister for Commerce & Industry Suresh Prabhu in New Delhi.
  • It is based on indicators such as infrastructure, services, safety of cargo, timeliness, track and trace.
  • The second place is occupied by Punjab, followed by Andhra Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir was in last spot.
  • Among 22 states, Gujarat is followed by Punjab, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra on the index.
  • Among the Union Territories, Daman & Diu occupied the top slot followed by Delhi and Chandigarh.


Capital: Gandhinagar

Chief Minister: Vijay Rupani

Governor: Om Prakash Kohli

Andhra Pradesh launches Bhoodhar card

  • Andhra Pradesh government plans to introduce ‘Bhoodhar card’ for a digital record of each individual’s land holdings with a particular number. There would be a secret number to each card.
  • The status of the land could be found out with ease and at the same time there would be safeguards to ensure data security.
  • It was announced by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister  N. Chandrababu Naidu.

Andhra Pradesh

Capital: Amaravati

Chief Minister: N. Chandrababu Naidu

Governor: E. S. L. Narasimhan

Indian Railways Launches Online Vendor Registration System

  • Research Designs & Standards Organisation (RDSO), the research arm of Ministry of Railways, has launched “New Online Vendor Registration System”.
  • Indian Railways has an annual procurement bill of Rs 50,000 crore every year.
  • Railway claims that the move would benefit lakhs of new vendors who wish to do business with railways.
  • This new system provides major improvements and big changes in the registration system over the earlier system.
  • Research Designs & Standards Organisation (RDSO) is headquartered in Lucknow.

Minister of Railways & Coal: Shri Piyush Goyal

Government to raise Territorial Army battalion to clean Ganga

  • The Central government has sanctioned the raising of a Territorial Army (TA) battalion comprising ex-servicemen of the Army.
  • It is formed as part of Clean Ganga mission by 2020.
  • It has been named as Composite Ecological Task Force (CETF) for National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG).
  • The CETF battalion will be started in Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh and the government has allocated Rs 167 crore under NMCG

Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation

Union Minister: Nitin Jairam Gadkari

Constituency: Nagpur, Maharashtra

National Anthem Not Mandatory in Cinema Halls: Supreme Court

  • The Supreme Court announced playing the national anthem before screening movies in cinema halls is not mandatory.
  • The bench was headed by chief justice Dipak Misra.
  • In November 2016, the Supreme Court had ordered all cinemas to play the anthem before screening a film “for the love of the motherland”.It also said the national flag must be displayed on the screen for the duration of the anthem.


Matunga station enters Limca Book for all-woman staff

  • The Matunga suburban station on the Central Railway (CR) entered Limca Book of Records for having an all-woman staff.
  • The unique initiative was taken by CR General Manager DK Sharma in July 2017 with the aim of empowering women.
  • Matunga is a railway station on the Central line of the Mumbai Suburban Railway network.
  • A team of 41 women staffers at the station includes personnel from the RPF, commercial and operating departments.These staffers work under the supervision of station manager Mamta Kulkarni.
  • The achievement comes six months after Matunga became the first railway station in the country to be run by an all- woman staff.


World Bank predicts 7.3% growth in 2018 for India

  • The World Bank has upgraded India’s estimated GDP growth this fiscal year to 6.7% instead of the 6.5% estimate by the Indian government.
  • In 2018-19, it will rise to 7.3%, making India the world’s fastest growing economy again. It also projected India’s growth rate at 7.5 % for next two years.
  • It was announced by World Bank’s Development Prospects Group Director, Ayhan Kose.
  • The World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans to countries of the world for capital programs.
  • It comprises two institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), and the International Development Association (IDA).

World Bank

Headquarters: Washington, D.C.

Motto: Working for a World Free of Poverty

President: Jim Yong Kim

Ola ties up with ICICI Bank for integrated offers

  • Ola, the taxi hailing app has tied up with ICICI Bank to provide a range of integrated offers, including micro-credit to their customers and digital payment facilities to driver partners respectively.
  • ICICI Bank customers can now book and pay for Ola on the bank’s mobile app and wallet itself and they can use the credit for 3-4 rides and then repay later.
  • ICICI Bank customers will get the dual benefit of booking a cab and making payments directly through their ‘iMobile’ and ‘Pockets’ application
  • For the driver partners, the bank will offer a ‘Pay Direct’ card to help them get their daily earnings directly into their ‘Pay Direct’ card accounts.
  • Ola alongwith ICICI Bank will launch a new co-branded credit card offering cashbacks and accelerated reward points.


Headquarters: Bengaluru

CEO: Bhavish Aggarwal


Headquarters: Mumbai

CEO: Chanda Kochhar

Tagline: Hum hai na, Khayal Apka

PhonePe inks pact with FreeCharge

  • Flipkart’s payments arm PhonePe has partnered with mobile wallet company FreeCharge to allow the Free charge customers to pay for transactions at PhonePe’s partner merchants.
  • According to the deal terms, PhonePe has now enabled its over 45 million users to link their existing FreeCharge wallets to the PhonePe app.
  • PhonePe customers will be able to spend their FreeCharge wallet balance at all online and offline merchant outlets that accept payments via PhonePe.

Ministry of housing and urban affairs ties up with Allahabad Bank

  • Ministry of housing and urban affairs and Allahabad Bank has signed a memorandum of understanding to provide a centralised platform for processing interest subsidy under Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana- National Urban Livelihood Mission.
  • The web-portal will provide an end-to-end solution for processing interest subsidy for NULM schemes.
  • The subsidy will be credited to Aadhaar-linked beneficiary account through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) mode.
  • The move is aimed at faster payment of subsidy to the people and enhanced monitoring system.


BCCI suspends Yusuf Pathan for five months

  • The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI),has suspended Indian all-rounder Yusuf Pathan for 5 months on doping violation.
  • He had ingested a prohibited substance Terbutaline, commonly found in cough syrups.
  • The substance ‘Terbutaline’ is prohibited both in and out of Competition in the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Prohibited List of Substances.

World Anti-Doping Agency

Headquarters: Montreal, Canada

President: Craig Reedie

Bhuvneshwar Kumar jumps eight places in latest ICC test ranking

  • India’s swing bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar has jumped eight places to 22nd rank in the latest ICC ranking.
  • In the rankings for the Test batsmen, Australia’s Steve Smith remains on 947 points in first position.
  • India skipper Virat Kohli moved to third spot from second. England counterpart Joe Root is in second rank.
  • India continued to be the top-ranked Test team with 124 points. They are followed by South Africa (111 points), Australia (104 points), New Zealand (100 points) and England (99 points). 


Former Bollywood actor Shrivallabh Vyas passes away

  • Bollywood actor Shrivallabh Vyas passed away in Jaipur.
  • He has done films like ‘Sarfarosh’, ‘Lagaan’, ‘Abhay’, ‘Aan: Men at Work’ ‘Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose: The Forgotten Hero’ and ‘Sankat City’.


World Laughter Day – January 10

  • World Laughter Day is observed January 10.
  • World Laughter Day was created in 1998 by Dr. Madan Kataria, founder of the worldwide Laughter Yoga movement.