DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS : August 21, 2019
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Maharashtra Transport Minister launches live tracking system for MSRTC buses
- Maharashtra Transport Minister Diwakar Raote launched a tracking system for MSRTC buses which will allow people to have real-time information about their commute.
- The Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation has over 18,000 buses in its fleet and carries more than 67 lakh passengers daily.
- GPS machines are being installed in all the buses. At present, it is ready on Mumbai-Nashik route for all Shivneri buses, the premium brand of MSRTC.
- The cost of the project, including deployment of GPS machines, tracking software, and putting up screens to display information at bus stops, is 32 crore rupees.
President Ram Nath Kovind launches plantation drive as part of Van Mahotsav celebration
- President Ram Nath Kovind planted a sapling of Maulsari in the Rashtrapati Bhavan Estate and launched a plantation drive as part of Van Mahotsav celebrations.
- The President met students and urged them to encourage fellow citizens to plant more trees and reaffirm the commitment to a greener and sustainable planet.
- Over the next few weeks, the President’s Secretariat will be planting over three thousand trees and around three thousand shrubs.
- The President’s Estate spread over 330 acres of harbours rich biodiversity.
India, Zambia sign 6 MoUs following delegation level talks between PM Modi & Zambian President
- The visit of Zambia President Edgar Chagwa Lungu‘s visit to India will further enhance the age-old relationship between the two countries.
- Both the countries will increase their participation in the fields of health care, tourism, agriculture, food processing and mining.
- The State visit of President Lungu will provide an opportunity to further energize India’s mutually beneficial partnership with Zambia.
- Mr Lungu expressed hope that more Indian companies will invest in Zambia. He reaffirmed Zambian government’s commitment to enhance relations.
- Mr Modi held delegation-level talks with President of Zambia Edgar Chagwa Lungu.
- India and Zambia also signed six MoUs in several areas including geology, defence, arts and culture.
- Mr Lungu arrived in New Delhi on a three-day visit to India.
Madhya Pradesh para swimmer Satendra Singh Lohia crosses America’s Catalina Channel
- Divyang Satendra Singh Lohia from Madhya Pradesh has become the first Asian swimmer to cross the Catalina Channel of America.
- Satendra holds the Asian record of crossing both the English and Catalina channels.
- Gwalior born Satendra led the Indian Para Relay team along with five team mates and crossed the Catalina Channel in 11 hours 34 minutes.
- At that time, the water temperature was around 13 degrees Celsius.
- The Indian Para Relay Team started 42 km of swimming at 10.57 p.m. from St. Catalina Island and finished swimming at Los Angeles at 10.30 a.m.
- Satyendra has also honoured with the Vikram Award, the highest sports award in Madhya Pradesh.
High-level meeting held between Indian, Sri Lankan Coast Guards over security concerns
- The Indian Coast Guard held a High-Level Meeting (HLM) with the Sri Lanka Coast Guard at Coast Guard Headquarters in New Delhi.
- The Indian side was led by Director General, Coast Guard K Natarajan, while the Sri Lankan delegation was headed by Rear Admiral Samantha Wimalathunge.
- The meeting took place under the provisions of the MoU signed between the two sides for the establishment of a collaborative relationship to combat transnational illegal activities at sea and develop regional co-operation.
- A four-member delegation of the Sri Lanka Coast Guard led by its DG Rear Admiral Samantha Wimalathunge Director General (DG) is presently on an official visit to India.
- During the meeting, both sides agreed to strengthen co-operation in addressing a spectrum of maritime issues concerning safety and security.
COMMITTEES & RECOMMENDATIONS
Three committees set up for UT related issues by J&K govt
- The Jammu and Kashmir Government has set into motion a process to work out different modalities by constituting three high-level committees for the formal establishment of Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.
- These Committees will devise modalities for the functioning of proposed Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir and deal with financial matters and staff-related issues in both the proposed union territories.
- The order issued by the General Administration Department, a committee headed by Advisor (S) to Governor will devise the modalities for functioning of proposed UT of Jammu and Kashmir.
- Satya Pal Malik is the current Governor of Jammu and Kashmir State, appointed by President Ram Nath Kovind on 21 August 2018.
APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS
Ravinder Takkar appointed Vodafone Idea CEO; Balesh Sharma steps down
- Vodafone Idea declared Balesh Sharma has stepped down from the position of chief executive officer (CEO) citing personal reasons.
- Ravinder Takkar, currently Vodafone Group’s representative in India, will be appointed as the new MD and CEO with immediate effect.
- Ravinder Takkar is currently a board member of Vodafone Idea and Indus Towers, where he is responsible for all Vodafone Group interests in India.
- Prior to his current role, Ravinder was the CEO of Vodafone Romania for three years and CEO of Vodafone Partner Markets in London.
Lt. Gen. Shavendra Silva appointed as the Army Commander: Sri Lanka
- Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva was appointed as the 23rd Commander of the Sri Lanka Army.
- Secretary of Defence, General Shantha Kottegoda confirmed that Shavendra Silva was appointed as the Commander of the Sri Lanka Army by President Maithripala Sirisena.
- Shavendra Silva joined the Sri Lanka Army in 1984 and led the Army’s 58th Division in the war against the LTTE and served as the Army Chief of Staff since January this year.
Paytm promotes CFO Madhur Deora as President
- Digital payments player Paytm announced the promotion of its Chief Financial Officer Madhur Deora as the company’s President.
- Prior to joining Paytm in October 2016, Deora served as Managing Director in Citigroup’s investment banking business.
- Paytm is the single largest platform for banks, financial services, and insurance (BFSI) payments.
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
Chief scientist K Thangaraj won JC Bose Fellowship for the year 2019
- K Thangaraj, chief scientist at the CSIR (Council of Scientific & Industrial Research) – Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB), Hyderabad, Telangana, bagged this year’s J C Bose Fellowship for his outstanding contribution in the field of population and medical genomics.
- JC Bose fellowship is awarded to active scientists and engineers in recognition of their outstanding performance and contributions by the Science and Engineering Research Board, Department of Science and Technology, Govt. of India.
- The award is named after Sir Jagadish Chandra Bose who was the inventor of Cresco graph (a device used to measure the growth of plants) and also known as the father of Bengali science fiction.
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
ISRO Chairman: Targeting at launching Small Satellite Launch vehicle by December
- Indian Space Research Organisation Chairman Dr.K Sivan has shared that they are targeting at launching Small Satellite Launch Vehicle (SSLV) by December.
- This new space vehicle of ISRO is designed to inject small satellites weighing up to 500 Kilograms in low earth orbit.
- This is a new programme to be launched by ISRO to enable commercial use of small satellites at minimum cost and manpower.
- ISRO Chairman also expressed about the future launches to be taken up by the organization.
S Sreesanth’s ban to end in August 2020: BCCI Ombudsman
- The Ombudsman of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), has ordered that Indian pacer S Sreesanth‘s ban for alleged spot-fixing will end in August next year.
- In his order passed on 7th of this month, Ombudsman D.K.Jain observed that the cricketer, who is now 36, is well past his prime, having already served six years.
- Ends of justice would be met by making it a seven-year suspension and letting Sreesanth play next year.
- The BCCI banned Sreesanth for life in August 2013 along with his Rajasthan Royals teammates Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan for indulging in alleged spot-fixing in the Indian Premier League of that year.
Former Chelsea and Arsenal full back Ashley Cole announces retirement from football
- The former full back Ashley Cole revealed on Sky Sports that he would be hanging up his boots for good.
- The 38-year-old spent last season at Derby County, while his former team-mate Frank Lampard was manager, but has decided not to carry on.
- Cole made his debut for Arsenal in 1999 as an 18-year-old and won two Premier League titles and three FA Cups during his seven seasons at the club.
- After 228 appearances, he moved to London rivals Chelsea in a controversial transfer and departed in acrimonious circumstances.
- Cole won his third Premier League title as well as the Champions League and Europa League. He also added four more FA Cups and the League Cup before leaving in 2014.
- He then returned to England in January on a short term contract with Derby County as he helped them reach the play-off final in the Championship.
Former Madhya Pradesh CM Babulal Gaur passes away
- In Madhya Pradesh, former Chief Minister of the state Babulal Gaur died in Bhopal.
- The 89-year-old was admitted to the hospital on 7th of August in a critical condition after his blood pressure dropped.
- Babulal Gaur served as the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh from August 2004 to November 2005 and represented Govindpura Assembly seat for 10 times.
- Born on 2nd June 1930, the Bharatiya Janata Party leader was credited with expanding party’s foothold in Madhya Pradesh.
Veteran music director-composer Khayyam passes away
- Veteran music director-composer Mohammed Zahur Khayyam Hashmi, popularly known as Khayyam, best known for his music in classic films such as ‘Umrao Jaan’ and ‘Kabhi Kabhi’, passed away after a prolonged illness at a hospital in Mumbai.
- He was 92. Veteran music-director composer Khayyam began his career in music from the city of Ludhiana at the tender age of 17.
- Besides ‘Kabhi Kabhi’ and ‘Umrao Jaan’, the musician’s other notable works include films such as “Trishul”, “Noorie” and “Shola Aur Shabnam”.
- In 2007, Khayyam was honoured with Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in Creative Music by the Sangeet Natak Akademi.
- Four years later, he was conferred with Padma Bhushan, the country’s third highest civilian award.
- He won three Filmfare Awards for Best Music in 1977 for Kabhi Kabhie and 1982 for Umrao Jaan, and a lifetime achievement award in 2010
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