DAILY CURRENT AFFAIRS : September 24, 2019

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National News

GST rate cut on hotel accommodation service will boost tourism sector: Tourism Minister

  • Union Tourism Minister Prahlad Singh Patel has said, GST rate cut on hotel accommodation service will boost tourism sector while he was addressing curtain-raiser press conference on Indian Tourism Mart (ITM) in New Delhi.
  • ITM is being organized with the objective of positioning the tourism destinations and products of the country in international source markets.
  • Over 240 international delegates have confirmed their participation from 51 countries.

Govt launches ‘UMMID’ initiative to tackle inherited genetic diseases of newborn babies

  • Science and Technology and Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan launched ‘UMMID’ initiative to tackle inherited genetic diseases of newborn babies in New Delhi.
  • He said congenital and hereditary genetic diseases are becoming a significant health burden and there is a need for adequate and effective genetic testing and counselling services.
  • Dr Vardhan further emphasized on the use of cutting edge scientific technology and molecular medicine for extending Universal Health Coverage for all.
  • The Minister also inaugurated NIDAN (National Inherited Diseases Administration) Kendras which aims at creating awareness about genetic disorders amongst clinicians and establishes molecular diagnostics in hospitals.

PM Modi to hold bilateral talks with US Prez Trump in New York

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold bilateral talks with US President Donald Trump in New York. 
  • The two leaders are expected to discuss a broad gamut of bilateral relations. 
  • The Prime Minister held a series of bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, UNGA session in New York.
  • This is the third time Mr. Modi will be meeting with Trump during his US visit. After the grand success of Howdy Modi, the mega event in Houston .The two leaders have also met earlier this year at G-7 summit in France and at Eastern Economic Forum in Russia.
  • He will gift Gandhi Solar Park to the UN. The 50 kilowatt-hour roof-top solar park has 193 solar panels, each representing a member of the multilateral body.
  • India has funded One Million Dollar Solar Panel and Green Roof Project on the Roof of UN headquarters. 
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi will also receive Goalkeepers Global Goals Award for Swachch Bharat Mission by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

17 UAE companies confirm investments in India’s infrastructure sector: Piyush Goyal

  • Union Minister for Railways and Commerce Piyush Goyal has said that seventeen companies from United Arab Emirates have confirmed their investments in India’s infrastructure sector in the last 12 months.
  • Mr. Goyal  was on a two-day visit to the UAE to attend the 7th Meeting of the UAE-India High-Level Joint Task Force on Investments, which he co-chaired with Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince’s Court, in Abu Dhabi.
  • The Minister emphasised that the UAE has committed investments worth 75 billion US Dollars in India’s infrastructure sector.
  • Expo 2020 to be held Dubai, further strengthens people-to-people ties. Mr Goyal said, Indian Pavilion at Expo will be the second largest, carrying the tagline ‘Future is in India.’

ED moves court to declare Zakir Naik as fugitive economic offender

  • Enforcement Directorate has filed an application in Mumbai’s special court to declare controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik as a fugitive economic offender. 
  • Naik is facing money laundering charges to the tune of 193 crore rupees. The PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act) court had issued a fresh non-bailable warrant against Naik. 
  • The radical television preacher left India in 2016 and subsequently moved to Malaysia, where he was granted permanent residency. 
  • He is also facing charges under Unlawful Activities Prevention Act for inciting extremism through hate.

Family pension for Central govt employee dying within 7 years of service hiked from 30 to 50 %

  • The family of a government servant, who dies within seven years of joining service, will now be eligible for family pension at enhanced rate of 50 per cent of last pay drawn for a period of 10 years. 
  • Earlier, the government servant who had rendered a service of less than seven years before his death, the rate of family pension was 30 per cent from the beginning and family pension at enhanced rate of 50 per cent was not payable to the family.
  • The government has amended Rule 54 of the Central Civil Services (Pension) Rules, 1972. 
  • The families of government servants who died before completion of service of seven years within 10 years before 1st October, 2019, will also be eligible for family pension at enhanced rates with effect from 1st of October.
  • The benefit of amended provisions would be available to the families of all government servants, including the personnel of Central Armed Police Forces. 

HM Amit Shah says 2021 Census will be a digital exercise

  • Union Home Minister Amit Shah has said that the process of a Pen-Paper Census will be transformed to a digital census in the upcoming census exercise by using the latest technology. 
  • Addressing the gathering after laying the foundation stone of Janganana Bhawan in New Delhi  Mr Shah said, the nationwide exercise will be carried out in major Indian languages and at a cost of 12 thousand crore rupees. 
  • Mr Shah said, people will be able to upload the details of self and family on the newly developed mobile app themselves. Digital census has a great future potential and if efficiently done, it could lead to provision of public services through one platform.

Ayushman Bharat scheme completes one year of its launch

  • Ayushman Bharat – the Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana has completed one year of its launch and the day is being celebrated as Ayushman Bharat Diwas across the country.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that Ayushman Bharat is more than just a health care scheme as it is a beacon of hope to more than 50 crore of India’s most vulnerable people.
  • Ayushman Bharat has been billed as the world’s largest government health care programme.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched the scheme from Ranchi, Jharkhand last year
  • The main aim of the scheme is to provide universal health care to the poor, needy and vulnerable sections of the country.

J&K becomes first state to issue highest number of golden cards under Ayushman Bharat scheme

  • Jammu and Kashmir has become the first state in the country to issue highest number of golden cards under Ayushman Bharat-Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY). 
  • Over 11 lakh golden cards have been generated within first 90 days of the launch of the scheme with 60% families having at least one golden card which is highest in the country. 
  • Chief Executive Officer, State Health Agency, Bhupinder Kumar organized the function to mark the first anniversary of the launch of Ayushman Bharat-Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana in the State.

Three-day training camp for officials & field functionaries of NSO, Maharashtra begins in Mumbai

  • A three-day training camp for officials and field functionaries of the National Statistical Office, Maharashtra started in Mumbai.
  • Addressing the group, NSO’s Additional Director General Ashok Kumar Toprani said, the training will cover the various intricacies regarding the upcoming Annual Survey of Unincorporated Sector Enterprises. 
  • The focus will be on transition from paper schedule to digital form, usage of Artificial Intelligence and Machine learning.

First corporate run train from Lucknow to Delhi ‘Tejas Express’ all ready to hit tracks on Oct 4

  • In Uttar Pradesh, the most awaited country’s first corporate run train from Lucknow to Delhi, Tejas Express is all ready to hit the tracks on 4th of October. 
  • Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath will flag off the train from Lucknow which will be run by IRCTC. 
  • Railways have formally made the announcement regarding running of the train who’s advance bookings have already started.

Bihar: Muzaffarpur Administration launches drives for AES affected blocks

  • In Bihar, Muzaffarpur District Administration has launched several drives for nutritional, sanitation needs and medical facilities for Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) affected blocks
  • Five blocks of the district Mushari, Bochahan, Motipur, Kanti and Minapur are said to be epicentre of AES, which claimed lives of more than 160 children this year.

EC appoints former IRS officers as special expenditure observers for Maharashtra polls

  • Election Commission has appointed former Indian Revenue Service officers Madhu Mahajan and B Murali Kumar as Special Expenditure Observers for ensuing Maharashtra Assembly elections. 
  • Ms Mahajan will watch the conduct of elections with special emphasis on controlling the abuse of money power, in consultation with the Chief Electoral Officer at Mumbai. 
  • While, Murali Kumar will be at Pune to look into matters in rest of the state with officers and Election Authorities as deemed necessary.

Maharashtra: EC declares by-elections to Satara Parliamentary Constituency

  • The Election Commission of India has declared by-elections to Satara Parliamentary Constituency after three-time Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) MP Udayanraje Bhosale resigned, leaving the seat vacant. 
  • The by-polls would take place on October 21, along with the Assembly elections and the counting will done on the same day as of Assembly elections, October 24, 2019.


UK launches biggest peacetime operation after Thomas Cook collapse

  • The first batch of 1,50,000 British tourists is being flown back home from destinations including Bulgaria, Cuba, Turkey and the United States after travel firm Thomas Cook collapsed .
  • The United Kingdom’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is co-ordinating the repatriation, the biggest in peacetime, after the tour operator ceased trading with immediate effect.
  • Thomas Cook’s administration puts 22,000 jobs at risk worldwide, including 9,000 in the UK. The corporate bankruptcy left some 6,00,000 tourists stranded worldwide. 

World’s first camel hospital at Dubai set to expand its facilities

  • World’s first camel hospital at Dubai is set to expand its facilities by an additional 50 per cent in response to the increase in demand for its services. 
  • Mohammad Alblooshi, Director, Dubai Camel Hospital said, it is a unique hospital catering specifically to the needs of the burgeoning camel industry that has been flourishing and growing by leaps and bounds over the past few years.
  • Camels are an integral part of the United Arab Emirate’s heritage. Historically, camels, known as the ‘Ship of the Desert’ were a source of transport as well as food and milk in the region.

British PM reiterates call for flexibility from EU in Brexit talks

  • British Prime Minister Boris Johnson reiterated a call for flexibility from the European Union in Brexit talks during a meeting with Council President Donald Tusk in New York that failed to yield a breakthrough. 
  • Both the leaders met on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly as Britain races towards its 31st of October departure without an exit agreement and the prospect of economic disruption.

Russia gives formal support to Paris climate agreement

  • Russian Prime minister Dmitry Medvedev gave formal support to the Paris climate agreement and ordered Russian laws to be adapted to its obligation.
  • Dmitry Medvedev said that Russia is formally adopting the 2015 Paris agreement and will now allocate financial resources to developing countries for prevention and adaptation to climate change.

Bangladesh drive against Corruption and Crime will continue: Minister Obaidul Quader

  • Road, Transport and Bridges Minister of Bangladesh Obaidul Quader said that the ongoing drive against corruption, drugs, and criminalisation will continue until the menace is uprooted.
  • Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has instructed that no one should be spared even if they are affiliated with the ruling party. 
  • In the meanwhile four more clubs in Dhaka were raided by the police for suspected gambling and drug related activities.

Emmy Awards: ‘Game of Thrones’ ends run with outstanding drama series

  • ‘Game of Thrones’ won the award for Outstanding Drama Series for its eighth and final season at 71st Prime Time Emmy Awards. 
  • It defeated seven other contenders including ‘Killing Eve’, ‘Ozark’, and ‘Pose’ for the best drama crown. Apart from the top honour, Peter Dinklage won best supporting actor for the record fourth time for the series.
  • Actor Billy Porter took home the trophy of best actor in drama for his role in ‘Pose’, becoming the first openly gay, black man, to win the prize. 
  • Jodie Comer scored her maiden Emmy for ‘Killing Eve’. The actor, who plays the stylish assassin Villanelle on the BBC America drama, bagged the award for best actress in a drama series.
  • Actor-writer Bill Hader has won second consecutive best lead actor in a comedy series Emmy for his performance in HBO’s “Barry”

Business and Economy

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari stresses on the need of power audit

  • Union Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, MSME Nitin Gadkari has stressed on the need of power audit, especially for those who are not following standards of energy efficiency norms.
  • Mr Gadkari was addressing the National Conclave to scale up energy efficiency in MSME sector in New Delhi .He said, reducing the transportation cost is the top priority of the government.
  • The two-day Conclave is being organized by Bureau of Energy Efficiency(BEE) with participation from MSME entrepreneurs, 
  • At the event, a knowledge management portal named SIDHIEE was also launched.

Country’s steel production increased from 22 million tonnes in 1990 to nearly 140 million tonnes now: Dharmendra Pradhan

  • Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas and Steel Dharmendra Pradhan said that the country’s steel production has increased from 22 million tonnes in 1990 to nearly 140 million tonnes now.
  • He said, the country is currently importing only two to three million tonnes of steel.

RBI cracks whip on PMC Bank, sets Rs 1000-withdrawal limit, panicked customers throng branches

  • Reserve Bank of India has placed Mumbai-based Punjab and Maharashtra Cooperative Bank Limited under restrictions. 
  • As per directions depositors will be allowed to withdraw a sum not exceeding Rs 1,000 of the total balance in any account.
  • According to the new restrictions, the bank cannot issue loans or open fixed deposit accounts for the next six month.


Veteran cricketer Madhav Apte passes awayPIC

  • Veteran cricketer Madhav Apte passed away in Mumbai after suffering a cardiac arrest. He was 86. 
  • Apte made his Test debut against Pakistan at the Cricket Club of India in Mumbai in November 1952 and played his last test against West Idies at Kingston in April 1953.
  •  He was the first Indian opener to aggregate over 400 runs in a Test series. 

Bangladesh hold India to a goalless draw in SAFF U-18 football

  • In football, India were held to a goalless draw by Bangladesh in their opening match of the SAFF Under-18 Championship at Kathmandu.

WADA announces probe into ‘inconsistencies’ in laboratory data provided by Russia

  • The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) announced a probe into inconsistencies in laboratory data provided by Russia.
  • WADA said in Tokyo, it had given Russia three weeks to respond after problems with the data came to light. 
  • Russia had handed over thousands of files and samples from its Moscow anti-doping laboratory in January, fulfilling a key condition for its reinstatement by WADA last September.
  • WADA had previously warned that it would take the “most stringent sanctions” if any of the data was found to have been tampered with.

FIFA The Best Football Awards: Lionel Messi Beats Cristiano Ronaldo to Win Player of the Year, Megan Rapinoe Bags Women’s Honour

Image result for messi

  • Lionel Messi won the FIFA Men’s Player of the Year award in FIFA The Best Football Awards at La Scala opera house in Milan.
  • Megan Rapinoe took the women’s prize to cap a historic year for the United States’ World Cup icon.

List of all the winners at FIFA’s The Best Awards ceremony:

Best men’s player: Lionel Messi (ARG/Barcelona)

Best women’s player: Megan Rapinoe (USA/Reign FC)

Best men’s goalkeeper: Alisson Becker (BRA/Liverpool)

Best women’s goalkeeper: Sari van Veenendaal (NED/Atletico Madrid)

Men’s World 11 team of year: Alisson Becker (BRA/Liverpool); Sergio Ramos (ESP/Real Madrid), Virgil Van Dijk (NED/Liverpool), Matthijs De Ligt (NED/Juventus), Marcelo (BRA/Real Madrid); Luka Modric (CRO/Real Madrid), Frenkie De Jong (NED/Barcelona), Eden Hazard (BEL/Real Madrid); Lionel Messi (ARG/FC Barcelona), Kylian Mbappe (FRA/PSG), Cristiano Ronaldo (POR/Juventus)

Women’s World 11 team of year: Sari Van Veenendaal (NED/Atletico Madrid); Lucy Bronze (ENG/Lyon), Wendie Renard (FRA/Lyon), Nilla Fischer (SWE/Linkopings), Kelly O’Hara (USA/Utah Royals); Amandine Henry (FRA/Lyon), Julie Ertz (USA/Chicago), Rose Lavelle (USA/Washington); Marta (BRA/Orlando), Alex Morgan (USA/Orlando), Megan Rapinoe (USA/Reign FC)

Men’s coach: Jurgen Klopp (Liverpool)

Women’s coach: Jill Ellis (USA)

Puskas Award best goal: Daniel Zsori (HUN/Debrecen)

Fair-play award: Marcelo Bielsa and Leeds United

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