Current Affairs Today December 5 2017
We are here for you to provide the important current affairs December 5 2017 which have unique updates of all daily events from all newspapers such as The Hindu, The Economic Times, PIB, Times of India, India Today, Indian Express, Business Standard, all Government official websites. Our complete current affairs helps you to get more marks in Banking, insurance, UPSC, SSC, CLAT, Railway and all other competitive Exams.
Uttar Pradesh’s Shamli District included in National Capital Region
On 4th December 2017, Uttar Pradesh’s Shamli district was included in the National Capital Region (NCR), taking the total number of districts in the NCR to 23.
Shamli included in NCR:
i. The decision to include Shamli in the NCR was taken at the 37th meeting of the National Capital Region Planning Board (NCRPB) held in New Delhi.
ii. The meeting was chaired by Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri. It was attended by Haryana Chief Minister Manoharlal Khattar, Uttar Pradesh Urban Development Minister Suresh Kumar Khanna and Delhi Public Works Department Minister Satyendra Jain, etc.
iii. Besides Delhi, there are at present 22 districts in the NCR – 13 of Haryana, 7 of Uttar Pradesh and 2 of Rajasthan.
About National Capital Region Planning Board (NCRPB):
♦ Purpose – planning body for the NCR region
♦ Chairman – Hardeep Singh Puri
♦ Member Secretary – B K Tripathi
22nd conference of Asian Harmonization Working Party (AHWP) begins in New Delhi
On 4th December 2017, the 22nd conference of Asian Harmonization Working Party (AHWP) began in New Delhi.22nd conference of Asian Harmonization Working Party (AHWP):
i. The 22nd conference of AHWP was inaugurated by Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, Anupriya Patel. It will be held till 8th December 2017.
ii. The conference is being conducted by Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) and National Drug Regulatory Authority (NDRA) of India in collaboration with Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.
iii. The conference seeks to develop and recommend approaches for the convergence and harmonisation of medical device regulations in Asia and beyond and facilitate the exchange of knowledge and expertise among regulators and the industry.
About Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO):
♦ Purpose – national regulatory body for Indian pharmaceuticals and medical devices
♦ Headquarters – New Delhi
♦ Minister responsible – J P Nadda
Government to form committee for drug pricing, new launches
Central Government has decided to set up a multi- disciplinary committee of experts for consultation on matters pertaining to the implementation of Drug Price Control Order (DPCO), including technical issues related to pricing and launch of new drugs.
Committee for Drug Pricing and New Launches:
i. Member secretary of National Pharmaceutical Pricing authority (NPPA), will be the convener of this committee.
ii. Other members of this committee will include representatives from Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER) and Department of Health Research/Indian Council of Medical Research.
iii. NPPA will decide and refer relevant issues to the committee within four weeks and the committee will submit its report along with its findings on the same within next four weeks.
iv. Based on the recommendations of the committee, NPPA shall pass an order which will be considered as a final decision on these issues.
Government proposes to register only BS-VI vehicles from June 2020
As per Central Government’s draft notification on the Central Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Rules, 2017, motor vehicles conforming to Emission Standard Bharat Stage-IV, shall not be registered after 30th June, 2020. After 30th June, 2020, only BS-VI compliant vehicles will be registered.
i. This is in line with earlier order by Central Government for implementation of the Bharat Standard-VI compliant cleaner transport fuels across India by April 2020 and in Delhi by April 2018.
ii. These decisions have been taken with an objective to curb emissions from the vehicles operating on outdated technology.
iii. This decision also implies that eight-seater cars and trucks, conforming to Emission Standard Bharat Stage-IV which would be manufactured before April 1, 2020 and sold in the form of drive-away chasis will also not be registered after the stipulated deadline.
About BS-VI Fuel:
♦ BS-VI , equivalent to Euro-VI grade, is the cleanest fuel.
♦ BS-VI grade fuel contains 10 parts per million (ppm) of sulphur as against 50 ppm in BS-IV fuels.
Madhya Pradesh passes bill awarding death for rape of girls aged 12 or less
On December 4, 2017, Madhya Pradesh State Assembly unanimously passed ‘Dand Vidhi (Madhya Pradesh Sanshodhan) Vidheyak, 2017’, a bill that proposes ‘hanged till death’ sentence for convicts of rape and gang-rape cases involving girls below 12 years of age. i. This bill is Madhya Pradesh State Government’s response to National Crime Records Bureau’s (NCRB’s) latest report which revealed that Madhya Pradesh recorded the highest number of rape cases in India.
ii. This bill was introduced in the house by Madhya Pradesh Law and Legislative Affairs Minister Rampal Singh.
iii. As per the provisions of this bill, capital punishment would be awarded to convicts under Section 376 (A), pertaining to rape, and Section 376 (D, A), pertaining to gang rape.
iv. The bill will be sent to the Centre and will come in to force after President’s assent. With the passage of the bill, Madhya Pradesh has become the first state in India where rape convicts will be sentenced to death.
Quick Facts about Madhya Pradesh:
♦ Capital – Bhopal
♦ Current Chief Minister – Shivraj Singh Chouhan
♦ Current Governor – Om Prakash Kohli
♦ Important National Park – Bandhavgarh National Park
6th International Tourism Mart begins in Guwahati
6th International Tourism Mart (ITM) begun in Guwahati, Assam on December 5, 2017. 6th ITM will conclude on December 7, 2017.
Highlights of 6th International Tourism Mart (ITM):
i. This event has been organised by Union Ministry of Tourism in association with the North Eastern States of India.
ii. 6th ITM was inaugurated by Governor of Assam, Jagdish Mukhi in presence of Sarbananda Sonowal, Chief Minister of Assam and other dignitaries.
iii. 6th ITM will not only focus on North Eastern India’s tourism potential but will also put spotlight on India’s “Act East Policy” and strengthening of ties with Association of SouthEast Asian Nation (ASEAN) countries.
iv. This event will serve as a platform for tourism product suppliers from India’s North East region to reach out to international and domestic buyers.
v. 103 tourism product sellers from the North Eastern States, 50 domestic stakeholders in Tourism sector, 66 foreign delegates and media persons from over 29 countries will attend this event.
About International Tourism Mart (ITM):
♦ International Tourism Mart and is held annually with an objective to highlight tourism potential of the region in India and abroad.
♦ Earlier editions ITM have been held in Guwahati, Tawang, Shillong, Gangtok and Imphal.
India’s largest floating solar power plant starts operations in Kerala
India’s largest floating solar power plant has been set up on the Banasura Sagar reservoir in Wayanad, Kerala.Salient Features of Floating Solar Power Plant in Kerala:
i. This plant has been set up by Kerala state electricity board (KSEB) at a cost of Rs 9.25 crore and with technical support from Thiruvananthapuram-based Adtech Systems Ltd
ii. The 500 kWp (kilowatt peak) solar plant floats on 1.25 acres of water surface of the reservoir.
iii. The plant has 1938 solar panels mounted on 18 ferro cement floaters. The plant is expected to generate 7.5 lakh units of power annually.
iv. It is to be noted that floating solar plants have higher efficiency compared to ground-mounted installations as water provides moderating effect on panel temperature.
ILO releases World Social Protection Report 2017-2019
As per data presented in International Labour Organization’s (ILO’s) World Social Protection Report 2017-19, only 45 per cent of the global population is effectively covered by at least one social benefit.
i. As per this report, only 29 per cent of the global population has access to comprehensive social security. This marks a marginal increase compared to 27 per cent in 2014-2015.
ii. It has been recommended in the report that public spending on social protection should be increased especially in countries of Africa and Asia and the Arab countries.
iii. Remaining 71 per cent (5.2 billion people) are either partially protected or not protected at all………………………………………..Click here to Read more
UAE, Saudi Arabia form new group, separate from Gulf Cooperation Council
On December 5, 2017, United Arab Emirates (UAE) announced that it has formed a new economic and partnership group with Saudi Arabia, separate from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).i. As stated by UAE’s ministry, this new group has been formed to cooperate and coordinate between the UAE and Saudi Arabia in all military, economic, political and cultural matters, as well as fields of mutual interest.
ii. Foreign Policy strategic experts believe that this new group undermines GCC in the backdrop of diplomatic crisis with member state Qatar.
iii. Half of GCC member countries have cut ties with Qatar citing the reason that it is supporting terrorist activities in the region.
iv. So far, there is no clarity whether other Gulf Arab countries would be invited to join this new group.
Quick Facts about Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC):
♦ Founded in – 1981
♦ Headquarters – Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
♦ Members – Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Oman and Qatar
US Supreme Court allows full enforcement of Donald Trump’s latest travel ban
On 4th December 2017, the US Supreme Court ruled that a ban ordered by Donald Trump on travelers from six Muslim-majority countries and two other countries could be immediately imposed.
Full enforcement of Donald Trump’s latest travel ban:
i. The ban means that the United States would categorically refuse entry visas to prospective travelers from the countries of Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen, plus North Korea and Venezuela.
ii. The Supreme Court also lifted lower court rulings that had exempted certain family members of people in the United States from the travel limits — including grandparents, grandchildren, brothers-and-sisters-in-law, aunts and uncles, nieces and nephews and cousins. But, visa officials can make exceptions on a case-by-case basis.
Some of the world’s busiest airports by passenger traffic:
♦ Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport – United States
♦ Beijing Capital International Airport – China
♦ Dubai International Airport – Dubai
♦ Los Angeles International Airport – United States
UAE, UK, US and French armies hold joint exercise “Flag4” in Abu Dhabi
On 5th December 2017, the two-week United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States and France joint army training exercise “Flag4”, started in Abu Dhabi.Flag4:
i. “Flag4” is a part of the effort to consolidate multilateral relations, and to increase coordination between the UAE Armed Forces and participating nations.
ii. It aims to increase combat efficiency, gain more field expertise, and work to unify military concepts among participating parties.
iii. The exercise is characterized by seriousness and integration in command and control, the application of combat strategies, unification of joint military concepts and the implementation of all stages of professional training between ground units.
Some of the joint exercises of Indian Army in 2017:
♦ Imbax I – India & Myanmar (20 – 25 November 2017)
♦ Sampriti VII – India & Bangladesh (6 – 11 November 2017)
♦ Indra – India & Russia (19 – 29 October 2017)
BANKING & FINANCE
Fitch lowers 2017-18 growth projection to 6.7%
Global ratings agency Fitch has lowered the India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth projection for 2017-18 to 6.7 per cent from earlier 6.9 per cent.
i. This revelation was done in Fitch’s December 2017 Global Economic Outlook (GEO) released on December 4, 2017.
ii. India’s growth in first quarter of 2017-18 stood at 5.7 percent. For second quarter, the growth improved to 6.3 per cent. As per Fitch this rebound in growth in second quarter was weaker than expected and thus led to lowering the annual growth forecast for 2017-18.
iii. The report has outlined that India’s growth has been not up to the mark in recent quarters. However it may partly be attributed to one-off factors such as demonetisation in November 2016 and rollout of Goods and Services Tax law in July 2017.
iv. Fitch has also lowered financial year 2018-19 forecast to 7.3 per cent from 7.4 per cent.
Quick Facts about Fitch Ratings:
♦ Founded in – 1914
♦ Headquarters – New York, United State
♦ Current President and CEO – Paul Taylor
ADB approves USD 583 mn loan facility to RPower’s project in Bangladesh
On December 5, 2017, Reliance Power announced that Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved its loan facility totalling USD 583 million to develop its 750 MW power plant and Liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal project in Bangladesh.i. The loan facility is in the form of debt financing and partial risk guarantees totalling USD 583 million (approx Rs 3,748 crore).
ii. These projects for which the loan facility has been approved are LNG Terminal near Kutubdia Island south of Chittagong and a power generation facility to be located in Meghnaghat near Dhaka.
iii. These projects, which are being executed at a total cost of USD 1 billion will increase power generation and improve energy infrastructure in Bangladesh.
Quick Facts about Reliance Power:
♦ Founded in – 2007
♦ Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
♦ Current Chairman – Anil Ambani
Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Company Launches Digital Branches Through Mosambee
Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Company has started digital branch services through its offering ‘Mosambee’.
About Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Company’s ‘Mosambee’:
i. Mosambee is a handheld device that offers the services just like a mobile branch.
ii. Through Mosambee, customers can avail host of services including obtaining premium payment certificates, checking claim status, procuring account statements, locating branches and even SMS services for updating PAN and Aadhaar details.
iii. Customers can pay their renewal premium through all payment modes such as cheque, Demand Draft, online payment, credit and debit cards.
iv. Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance has emerged as one of leading players in insurance sector to adopt digital technology for offering services. It recently launched virtual chat assistant ‘BOING’ for assisting customers in carrying out basic activities related to their insurance account.
Quick Facts about Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance Company:
♦ Founded in – 2001
♦ Headquarters – Pune, Maharashtra
♦ Joint Venture Between – Bajaj Finserv Limited owned by the Bajaj Group of India and Allianz SE, a European financial services company
Centre increases agricultural education budget by 47.4 percent
Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare, Radha Mohan Singh has stated that Central Government has increased the budget of Agricultural Education by 47.4% this year as compared to the financial year 2013-14.
Central Government’s thrust on Agricultural Education:
i. This information was provided by Mr. Singh On December 3, 2017, while addressing Dr Rajendra Prasad Central Agricultural University, in Samastipur district of Bihar on the occasion of National Agricultural Education Day.
ii. Government of India has started several programmes aimed at strengthening Agricultural Education and Research for a long term and sustainable development in agriculture.
iii. Mr. Singh stated that objective of these programmes is to attract youth including school children towards agricultural education.
iv. Besides, in a bid to adopt quality and holistic approach to higher agricultural education, Central Government has implemented Fifth Dean Committee Report guidelines in all the Agricultural Universities.
AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS
Indian-American senator Kamala Harris tops 2017 list of ‘50 Leading Global Thinkers’
Indian-American California senator Kamala Harris has topped the prestigious Foreign Policy magazine’s 2017 list of ‘50 Leading Global Thinkers’. Kamala Harris – tops 2017 list of ‘50 Leading Global Thinkers’:
i. Kamala Harris is 53 years old. She has been recognised for giving the Democratic Party hope in the era of President Donald Trump.
ii. She is the daughter of an Indian mother and a Jamaican father. She is the first-ever Indian-American to be elected to the US Senate. She is the only black woman in the Senate.
iii. South Korean President Moon Jae-in is ranked second in the list for trying to rebuild decent democratic leadership in South Korea. Indian-origin stand-up comedian Hasan Minhaj has also made it to the list with position number 32.
About Foreign Policy magazine:
♦ Founder – Samuel P. Huntington and Warren Demian Manshel
♦ Founded – 1970
♦ Country – United States of America
ACQUISITIONS & MERGERS
Bharti Airtel acquires strategic stake in Juggernaut Books
On 4th December 2017, Bharti Airtel said, it has acquired a strategic stake in Juggernaut Books.
Bharti Airtel acquires strategic stake in Juggernaut Books:
i. The terms of the deal have not been disclosed. The investment is in line with Airtel’s endeavour to build an open content ecosystem and bring world-class digital content to its customers.
ii. The funding from Airtel will enable Juggernaut to ramp up content acquisition, digital marketing and prepare for a subscription-led offering in the next few months.
iii. Juggernaut’s former investors include Infosys co-founder and current chairman, Nandan Nilekani, and Boston Consulting Group India CEO, Neeraj Aggarwal.
About Juggernaut Books:
♦ Digital publishing platform
♦ Founded – 2015
♦ Founder – Chiki Sarkar
Prithvi Shaw named India’s captain for 2018 Under-19 Cricket World Cup
Prithvi Shaw has been named captain of the 15-member Indian squad for the 2018 Under-19 World Cup to be held in New Zealand from January 13, 2018.Prithvi Shaw – India’s captain for 2018 Under-19 Cricket World Cup:
i. Batsman Shubman Gill has been named as deputy captain. The selectors have added Aryan Juyal as the backup wicketkeeper in the squad and Harvik Desai is expected to be the first-choice gloveman.
ii. Additionally, five players – Om Bhosle, Rahul Chahar, Ninad Rathva, Urvil Patel and Aditya Thakare will be placed on standby.
About 2018 Under-19 Cricket World Cup:
♦ Dates – 13 January – 3 February 2018
♦ Cricket format – 50 overs
♦ Host – New Zealand
Yuvraj Singh launches UNICEF-ICC’s adolescent campaign
Yuvraj launched the “Power of Sports to Shape the Future of Adolescents” campaign in South Asia in Colombo.
Power of Sports to Shape the Future of Adolescents:
i. Indian cricketer Yuvraj Singh will be promoting the UNICEF sports initiative for youngsters in South Asia, which will also have the ICC’s (International Cricket Council) backing.
ii. Yuvraj was joined by under-19 players from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka who will compete in the ICC under-19 World Cup in New Zealand in January 2018.
iii. A panel discussion was followed by a friendly match between the players and the youth who attended the event. The event was jointly organised by UNICEF South Asia and the ICC.
About International Cricket Council (ICC):
♦ Headquarters – Dubai, United Arab Emirates
♦ Chairman – Shashank Manohar
♦ President – Zaheer Abbas
♦ CEO – David Richardson
Veteran Singer Purabi Mukhopadhyay passes away
On 4th December 2017, Veteran Rabindrasangeet singer Purabi Mukhopadhyay passed away at her residence after suffering from age-related health problems, in Kolkata.
Death of Purabi Mukhopadhyay:
i. Purabi Mukhopadhyay was 83 years old. She was surrounded by her two daughters and numerous students when she breathed her last.
ii. Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee expressed grief over her demise and offered her condolences.
Some of the museums in Kolkata:
♦ Academy of Fine Arts – Kolkata
♦ The Asiatic Society – Kolkata
♦ Asutosh Museum of Indian Art – Kolkata
♦ Birla Industrial & Technological Museum – Kolkata
Ali Abdullah Salehi, former Yemen President, killed in Sanaa
On 4th December 2017, former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh was killed by Houthi rebels in capital Sanaa.Death of Ali Abdullah Salehi:
i. Ali Abdullah Salehi was killed two days after he publicly broke off ties with the Houthi group, amid intense street battles between the rival factions that led to the killing of dozens of people.
ii. Houthi leader Abdul Malik al-Houthi celebrated what he called the day of the fall of the treasonous conspiracy. At least 125 people were killed and a further 238 are known to have been injured in the fighting over the past five days.
♦ Members of an Islamic religious-political movement
♦ Leaders -Hussein Badreddin al-Houthi, Abdul-Malik al-Houthi
♦ Headquarters – Sa’dah, Yemen
Bollywood Actor Shashi Kapoor passes away at 79
On 4th December 2017, veteran Bollywood actor Shashi Kapoor passed away at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, in Mumbai.
Death of Shashi Kapoor:
i. Shashi Kapoor was admitted to Kokilaben Ambani Hospital on 3rd December 2017 for a chest infection treatment. He is survived by daughter Sanjana Kapoor and his two sons Kunal and Karan.
ii. Shashi debuted with the 1961 film Dharmputra. He appeared in 116 Hindi films. He was honoured with the Padma Bhushan by the Government of India in 2011.
iii. In 2015, he was bestowed with the Dadasaheb Phalke Award. Shashi and his wife Jennifer Kendal established the Prithvi Theatre in November 1978 in Mumbai.
Some of the dams in Maharashtra:
♦ Dhamapur – Malvan River
♦ Vihar – Vihar River
♦ Ekrukh – Adela River
♦ Tulshi – Tulshi River
BOOKS & AUTHORS
Amitabh Bachchan launches book titled Bollywood-The Films! The Songs! The Stars!
On 2nd December 2017, Amitabh Bachchan launched Bollywood – The Films! The Songs! The Stars!, a book by S.M.M. Ausaja, Karan Bali, Rajesh Devraj and Tanul Thakur.Bollywood-The Films! The Songs! The Stars!:
i. It is a comprehensive illustrated guide and coffee table book, a tribute to India’s Bollywood, filled with trivia and facts about some of the most beloved actors, films and songs.
ii. The book was published by British multinational publishing company Dorling Kindersley (DK). Amitabh Bachchan has given the foreword to the book.
About Dorling Kindersley (DK):
♦ Founded – 1974
♦ Founder – Christopher Dorling, Peter Kindersley
♦ Headquarters – London
International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development – December 5
On 5th December 2017, International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development was celebrated all over the world.
International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development:
i. The theme for International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development 2017 is: Volunteers Act First. Here. Everywhere.
ii. The International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development mandated by the UN General Assembly, is held each year on 5 December.
iii. It is viewed as a unique chance for volunteers and organizations to celebrate their efforts, to share their values, and to promote their work among their communities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), United Nations agencies, government authorities and the private sector.
About United Nations:
♦ Secretary‑General – António Guterres
♦ General Assembly President – Miroslav Lajčák
♦ Economic and Social Council President – Frederick Musiiwa Makamure Shava
♦ Security Council President – Elbio Rosselli
World Soil Day – December 5
World Soil Day is celebrated annually on 5th December across the world.Background Information and Theme of World Soil Day 2017
i. World Soil Day 2017 is celebrated to create awareness about importance of soil quality for food security, healthy ecosystems and human well-being.
ii. Celebrating World Soil Day on 5th December was first recommended by International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) in 2002.
iii. Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) supported the formal establishment of World Soil Day under the leadership of Thailand and within the framework of the Global Soil Partnership.
iv. In June 2013, FAO Conference unanimously endorsed World Soil Day and requested its official adoption at the 68th United Nations (UN) General Assembly.
v.5th December was chosen as World Soil Day because it corresponds with birthday of King Bhumibol Adulyadej (King of Thailand) who sanctioned the event.
vi. In December 2013, UN General Assembly designated 5th December as World Soil Day and first World Soil Day was celebrated on 5th December 2014.
vii. Theme of World Soil Day 2017 is ‘Caring for the Planet starts from the Ground’.