Current Affairs October 1 2018

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Current Affairs October 1 2018

 INDIAN AFFAIRS

President gives assent to Karnataka’s 2016 Good Samaritan Bill
On October 1, 2018, President Ram Nath Kovind gave his assent to Karnataka Good Samaritan and Medical Professional (Protection and Regulation during Emergency Situations) Bill, 2016.
i. This bill aims to provide legal protection to the good samaritans in the state, who help accident victims with emergency medical care in the golden hour.
ii. In medical term the ‘golden hour’ is the first hour after a traumatic injury when emergency treatment is very crucial.
iii. Also, a proposed ‘Good Samaritan Fund’ has been set up for the help of the Samaritans with the expenses for attendance in courts and police stations by them.
iv. Karnataka has become the first state in the country to give legal protection to good samaritans.
Karnataka:
♦ Chief Minister: H D Kumaraswamy.
♦ Governor: Shri Vajubhai Vala.
♦ National parks: Anshi National Park, Bandipur National Park, Bannerghatta National Park, Kudremukh National Park, Rajiv Gandhi (Nagarhole) National Park.

SATAT initiative to promote Compressed Bio-Gas as an alternative, green transport fuel launched by Petroleum Minister
On October 1, 2018, Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas & Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan inaugurated the Sustainable Alternative Towards Affordable Transportation (SATAT) initiative.

SATAT initiative to promote Compressed Bio-Gas as an alternative, green transport fuel launched by Petroleum MinisterObjective:
To boost availability of more affordable transport fuels with better usage of agricultural residue, cattle dung and municipal solid waste.
Key Points:
i. It was launched as a part of Swachhta Hi Seva movement.
ii. During this launch, the PSU Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs ,i.e. IOC, BPCL and HPCL) invited xpression of Interest (EoI) from potential entrepreneurs to set up Compressed Bio-Gas (CBG) production plant.
iii. These plants would provide available CBG for use in  automotive fuels.
iv. This practice of using bio gas as a fuel would help provide an additional revenue source to farmers and  vehicle-users.
v. It would also help reduce polluted urban air due to farm stubble-burning and carbon emissions.
Other News:
i. According to National Policy on Biofuels 20185,000 Compressed Bio-Gas plants across India will be rolled out in a phased manner:

  • 250 plants by the year 2020,
  • 1,000 plants by 2022 and
  • 5,000 plants by 2025.

ii. These project will have an investment of around one lakh 75 thousand crore rupees. 
Background:
The 1,500-strong CNG stations network in the country currently serves about 32 lakh gas-based vehicles. The Working Group on Biofuels, set up under the National Policy on Biofuels 2018, is in the process of finalising a pan-India pricing model for Compressed Bio-Gas.

1st installment of Rs 122 crore to rain & snowfall-hit Himachal Pradesh for immediate rehabilitation: Centre
On September 29, 2018, the Central government released the 1st installment amounting Rs. 122 crore to the Himachal Pradesh  government.
Objective:
For rehabilitation measures due to heavy rain and snowfall.
Key Points:
Himachal Pradesh suffered a loss of around 1,500 crores during the current monsoon season.
Himachal Pradesh:
♦ Capital: Shimla.
♦ Chief Minister: Jai Ram Thakur.
♦ Governor: Acharya  Devvrat.
♦ National Parks: Great Himalayan National Park, Pin Valley National Park.

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

Overview of EAM Sushma Swaraj’s Visit to New York USA
i. On September 23, 2018, External Affairs Minister Smt Sushma Swaraj embarked on a 7-day official visit to United States of America
ii. On September 24, 2018, External Affairs Minister, Sushma Swaraj on behalf of India co-hosted a meeting with the United States and other selected countries over the issue of how to combat the drug menace.
iii. On September 26, 2018, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj attended the Nelson Madela Peace Summit in New York.
iv. On September 27, 2018, Smt. Sushma Swaraj, External Affairs Minister of India attended the customary BRICS Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on UNGA margins in New York.
v. On September 27, 2018, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj attended the 9th Trilateral Ministerial Commission in New York.
vi. On September 27, 2018, on the sidelines of G-4 Nations viz. India, Brazil, Germany and Japan reviewed lack of substantive progress in long-pending United Nations Security Council (UNSC) reforms.
vii. On September 28, 2018, EAM Sushma Swaraj attended the Informal Meeting of the SAARC Council of Ministers held here on the margins of the 73rd UN General Assembly.
viii. On September 27, 2018, UNSG’s Climate Change event was held in New York. Here India was represented by EAM Sushma Swaraj.
ix. On September 29, 2018, EAM Sushma Swaraj represented India in the 73rd UNGA session that was held in New York, USA. Here, she urged fundamental reforms in UN Security Council…………………………………..Click here to Read more

BANKING & FINANCE

Rs. 36,000 cr to be injected into system through purchase of govt bonds: RBI
On October 1, 2018, Reserve Bank of India announced injection of Rs.36,000 crore into the system through purchase of government bonds.
Objective:
To meet the festival season demand for funds.
Key Points:
i. The auctions to purchase government bonds will be as part of the Open Market Operations (OMO) to help manage liquidity.
ii. It would take place in the second, third and fourth week of October.

PNB raised benchmark lending rate by up to 0.2 pc
On October 1, 2018, Punjab National Bank (PNB) increased its benchmark lending rates or MCLR for the short-term loans by up to 0.2 per cent.
i. The rate hike comes ahead of monetary policy review announcement on October 5.
ii. The changes are effective from October 1.
iii. The new changes are:

TenorsPrevious rate in per centIncreased rate in percent
Overnight7.98.2
One Month8.058.10
IFC to invest $100 million in IRF, a Piramal-Bain joint venture
On October 1, 2018, International Finance Corporation (IFC) the finance arm of World Bank approved investment of $ 100 million in India Resurgence Fund (IRF).
i. India Resurgence Fund (IRF) is a joint venture of Parimal Enterprise Limited and Bain Capital.
ii. The fund originally needs a total of $300 million and each of the partner organizations have invested $100 million each.
iii. This fund would help in investing in restructuring of balance sheets of important organizations linked to infrastructure and consumption.
iv. These include buying assets in cement, steel and power. It is also looking to invest in hospitals, pharma, chemicals, paper, hotels and auto components.
IFC:
Headquarters: Washington D.C.

SBI cut daily ATM cash withdrawal limit to Rs 20,000
On October 1, 2018, SBI halved the withdrawal limit from Rs. 40,000 to Rs. 20,000 per day.
i. This was targeted for debit cards of the ‘Classic’ and ‘ Maestro’ platfroms.
ii. The main objective in doing so was to reduce the number of fraudulent transactions and promote cashless transactions.
iii. This move would be effective form October 31, 2018 as according to Banking Codes & Standards Board of India (BCSBI) guidelines, at least 30 days’ notice has to be given to customers for any change in terms and conditions or charges.
SBI:
♦ Headquarters: Mumbai.
♦ Chairman: Rajnish Kumar.
♦ Tagline: With you all the way, Pure Banking Nothing Else, The Nation’s banks on us.

BUSINESS & ECONOMY

NSE Indices launched 2 dynamic asset allocation indices
On October 1, 2018, NSE Indices launched 2 dynamic asset allocation indices designed to combine equity and debt.
i. These indices are:

  • Nifty 50 & short duration debt –Dynamic P/E index and
  • Nifty 50 & short duration debt – Dynamic P/B index.

ii. The indices compare the current price-earnings ratio (P/E) or price-book ratio (P/B) with historical P/E or P/B ratio of Nifty 50 in the previous seven years.
iii. In these indices, the maximum allocation to equity is 80 per cent and minimum allocation is 65 per cent.
iv. This will help fill the gap due to the absence of a relevant benchmark for performance comparison of the popular dynamic asset allocation category offered by mutual funds in the country.
NSE:
Headquarters: Mumbai.

Irdai allows PoS disbursal of all micro-insurance products
On October 1, 2018, Insurance regulator Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India(IRDAI) approved micro-insurance disbursal through point-of-sales (PoS).
i. IRDAI created a special category of insurance policies called micro-insurance policies which would be disbursed via the POS terminals.
ii. These would help in promoting insurance coverage among economically vulnerable sections of society.
iii. The products would include:Life, General and Health insurance.
About micro-insurance policies:
A micro-insurance policy is a general or life insurance policy with a sum assured of Rs 50,000 or less.
IRDAI:
♦ Headquarters: Hyderabad.
♦ Chairman: Subhash Chandra Khuntia.
♦ Founded: 1999.

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

List of recipients of Ekalabya Puraskar, 2018 released
On October 1, 2018, the Ekalabya committee selected Odia hockey player Lilima Minz for the prestigious Ekalabya Puraskar, 2018.

List of recipients of Ekalabya Puraskar, 2018 releasedi. The annual award comprises of a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh along with a citation.
ii. She represented the Indian senior team for the first time in 2011 during a four-nation tournament in Argentina.
iii. She also participated in the 2016 Summer Olympics and also won the gold medal Womens Hockey Asia Cup after a gap of 13 years in Japan on November 5, 2017.
iv. Apart from her, 2 other sportswomen would felicitated with the award.
v. They are:  weight lifter Jhili Dalabehera and Badminton player Rutuparna Panda.
About the Award:
♦ The Ekalabya Puraskar has been instituted by IMPaCT, the social wing of IMFA, which has been promoting literature, sports, the arts, culture and other socially meaningful activities in the state for decades.
♦ Instituted in 1993.

APPOINTMENTS & RESIGNS

Max Life MD Rajesh Sud resigned, CFO Prashant Tripathy appointed as next MD
On October 1, 2018, the Managing Director of Max Life Insurance, Rajesh Sud resigned from the company.
i. He will be replaced by CFO Prashant Tripathy with effect from January 1, 2019.
ii. He has spent 18 years in Max Life and completed his second five-year term as executive vice chairman and managing director of the company.
iii. He will continue to be the non-executive chairman Max Bupa and Max Skill-First till March 31, 2019.
iv. Also the current senior director and chief operations officer V Viswanand has been appointed the Deputy Managing Director of the company.
MAX Life Insurance:
Headquarters: New Delhi.

6-member board led by Uday Kotak set up to appoint chairman of IL&FS
On October 1, 2018, Ministry of Corporate Affairs appealed the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) to change of the board and management control of Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services (IL&FS).
i. The NCLT has changed and appointed 6 members in its place in the board of the company. They are:

  • Uday Kotak, MD of Kotak Mahindra Bank,
  • G.N. Bajpai, former Sebi chairman,
  • G.C. Chaturvedi, chairman of ICICI Bank,
  • Malini Shankar and Vineet Nayyar, retired IAS officers, and
  • Nandkishore, veteran auditor.

ii. These new directors would decide on the chairman by 8 October.
iii. The new board would submit the response in the NCLT by 15 October and the tribunal would hear the matter further on 31 October.
Background:
i. IL&FS has over Rs 16,500 crore of standalone debt and Rs 91,000 crore of consolidated debt. Banks and insurance companies have the largest exposure to IL&FS.
ii. Recently, India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) also downgraded long-term issuer rating on IL&FS Financial Services to  ‘IND C’ due to liquidity pressure.
IL&FS:
♦ Headquarters: Mumbai.
♦ CEO: Arun K. Saha.

Mohd Mushtaque Ahmad elected as new Hockey India president
On 1st October 2018, Mohd Mushtaque Ahmad was elected the new President of Hockey India (HI).

Mohd Mushtaque Ahmad elected as new Hockey India presidenti. Earlier, Mohd Mushtaque Ahmad was the Secretary General of HI. He replaces Rajinder Singh.
ii. Other appointments:

  • Gyanendro Ningombam – Senior Vice President
  • Asima Ali, Bhola Nath Singh – Vice Presidents
  • Rajinder Singh – Secretary General
  • Tapan Kumar Das – Treasurer
  • Firoz Ansari, Asunta Lakra – Joint Secretary

Arun Kumar appointed Director General of Railway Protection Force (RPF)
On 29th September 2018, Arun Kumar was appointed Director-General of the Railway Protection Force (RPF).

Arun Kumar appointed Director General of Railway Protection Force (RPF)i. Arun Kumar replaces Dharmendra Kumar. Arun Kumar is a 1985 batch IPS (Indian Police Service) officer of the Uttar Pradesh cadre.
ii. He is Special Director-General of the Border Security Force (BSF). He has served as Joint Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

Rajesh Agrawal Takes over charge as a New Member (Rolling Stock), Railway Board
On 28th September 2018, Rajesh Agrawal took charge as the new Member (Rolling Stock), Railway Board and ex-officio Secretary to the Government of India.
i. Rajesh Agrawal belongs to the 1980 batch of Indian Railways Services of Mechanical Engineering (IRSME). Earlier, he was General Manager of Modern Coach Factory at Raebarely.
ii. He is an author of All Indian Railways World Heritage Sites Inscriptions. He has received awards like Gold Medals in IE (India)’81, NAIR’85, GM’95, Hindi-Board’s Award’88, UNESCO Best Project ’07 Barker Robbins Prize etc.

IDBI Bank MD, CEO B Sriram retires
B Sriram has resigned as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Managing Director (MD) of IDBI Bank.
i. He became MD and CEO of IDBI bank in June 2018 replacing Mahesh Kumar Jain. B Sriram, was previously the Managing Director at State Bank of India. IDBI Bank is yet to select its new MD and CEO

SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY

Japan’s Minerva-II-1 rovers send back first video from asteroid Ryugu 280 million km away
Japan’s two Minerva-II-1 rovers have sent first video images from the surface of asteroid Ryugu.
Key Points:
i. Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has released a 15-frame clip and new photographs taken by the two Minerva-II-1 rovers.
ii. The rovers were deployed by unmanned spacecraft Hayabusa2 about 60 metres on to Ryugu’s surface after a 3.5 year journey. Ryugu is 280 million km away from Earth.
iii. This is the world’s first moving, robotic observation of an asteroid surface. The rovers can jump upto 15 m across the asteroid’s surface and stay airborne for 15 minutes.
iv. The mission was launched in December 2014 to study the origin of solar system. It will return to Earth with samples in 2020.
About Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA):
♦ President – Hiroshi Yamakawa
♦ Headquarters – Tokyo, Japan

China launches Centispace-1-s1 satellite on Kuaizhou-1A low-cost solid-fuel rocket
On 29th September 2018, China launched its Centispace-1-s1 satellite on a Kuaizhou-1A low-cost solid-fuel carrier rocket from Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in China.

China launches Centispace-1-s1 satellite on Kuaizhou-1A low-cost solid-fuel rocketKey Points:
i. This is the second commercial launch by the Kuaizhou-1A rocket. The Kuaizhou-1A rocket is a low-cost solid-fuel carrier rocket.
ii. It has high reliability and a short preparation period. It has been designed to launch low-orbit satellites upto 300 kg of weight.
iii. Kuaizhou-1A’s  first launch was carried out in January 2017. It had sent 3 satellites into space.
iv. Kuaizhou-1A was developed by a rocket technology company under the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC).
v. Centispace-1-s1 has been developed by Innovation Academy for Microsatellites of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
vi. It is a technology experiment satellite for the low-orbit navigation enhancement system that is developed by Beijing Future Navigation Technology Co.
About China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC):
♦ Owned by – Government of China
♦ Headquarters – Beijing, China

ENVIRONMENT

2 new species of lizards discovered in Western Ghats
On October 1, 2018, scientists from Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) and Centre for Ecological Sciences, IISc, Bangalore discovered two new species of lizards belonging to two new genera in Western Ghats.
i. The Lizards are: Montane forest lizard and Spiny-headed forest lizard.
ii. The two reptiles had been wrongly identified under the genus Calotes (similar to the common garden lizards) for more than 150 years.
iii. The paper was published last week in Zootaxa.

SPORTS

Samsun 2018 Hyundai Archery World Cup Final in Samsun, Turkey
On 29th and 30th September 2018, Samsun 2018 Hyundai Archery World Cup Final was held in Samsun, Turkey.

SPORTS Samsun 2018 Hyundai Archery World Cup Final in Samsun, TurkeyKey Points:
i. South Korea topped the medal tally with: 3 gold, 1 silver and 1 bronze medals. Turkey came second with: 1 gold and 2 silver medals.
ii. India won 3 medals: 1 silver and 2 bronze. Indian medal winners are listed below:

MedalWinnersEvent
SilverAbhishek Verma, Jyothi SurekhaCompound’s Mixed Team event
BronzeAbhishek VermaMen’s Compound individual event
BronzeDeepika KumariRecurve Women’s Individual event
Lewis Hamilton wins Russian Grand Prix
On 30th September 2018, Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton won the Russian Grand Prix in Russia.

Lewis Hamilton wins Russian Grand Prixi. This was Lewis Hamilton’s 70th career win. Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas finished in second position. He was followed by Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in third place.

2018 ATP Shenzhen Open (Tennis) in Shenzhen, China
From 24 to 30 September 2018, 2018 ATP Shenzhen Open (Tennis) was held in Shenzhen, China.
Key Points:
i. The 2018 ATP Shenzhen Open was a professional men’s tennis tournament. It was the 5th edition of the tournament. It was played on hard courts.
ii. Winners of the tournament are listed below:

EventWinners
SinglesYoshihito Nishioka (Japan)
DoublesBen McLachlan (Japan), Joe Salisbury (United Kingdom)

OBITUARY

Former MP Malti Sharma dead
Former Uttar Pradesh minister and parliamentarian Malti Sharma passed away following a short term illness.
i. She was 89 years old. She belonged to the BJP party. In 1977, she was elected to the Uttar Pradesh Assembly from Muzaffarnagar constituency.
ii. In 1994, she was elected to Rajya Sabha. She was a former junior minister in Uttar Pradesh.

IMPORTANT DAYS

World Habitat Day – October 1
On 1st October 2018, World Habitat Day was observed all over the world.
World Habitat Day:
i. When: In 1985 United Nations General Assembly declared the first Monday of October as World Habitat Day. It was first celebrated in 1986.
ii. Why: this day aims to highlight the state of our towns and cities, and on the fundamental right to adequate shelter.
iii. Theme: for World Habitat Day 2018 is “Municipal Solid Waste Management”.

International Day of Older Persons – 1 October
On 1st October 2018, International Day of Older Persons was observed throughout the world.

International Day of Older Persons - 1 OctoberKey Points:
i.When: In 1990, the United Nations General Assembly declared 1st October as the International Day of Older Persons. It was first observed in 1991.
ii.Why: to create awareness on issues that affect the older persons like health issues and elder abuse. It is also appreciates the contributions of older people to the society.
iii.Theme: for International Day of Older Persons 2018 is “Celebrating Older Human Rights Champions.”
International Day of Older Persons observed in India:
i.Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu conferred the “Vayoshreshtha Samman-2018” awards on outstanding senior citizens and institutions.
ii.A short film titled “Yeh Zindagi Sabak Hai” based on the achievements of the awardees was screened. It was produced by Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment through National Film Development Corporation (NFDC).
iii.Thaawarchand Gehlot, Union Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment flagged off a “Walkthon” for older persons at Commonwealth Games Village Stadium, in New Delhi.
iv.It was organised by the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, National Institute of Social Defence (NISD) and Anugraha Organisation.

World Vegetarian Day – October 1
On 1st October 2018, World Vegetarian Day was celebrated all over the world.
i. When: In 1977, World Vegetarian Day was founded by the North American Vegetarian Society (NAVS). In 1978, it was endorsed by the International Vegetarian Union.
ii. Why: This day aims to promote vegetarianism and highlights the ethical, environmental, health, and humanitarian benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle.