Latest Current Affairs – April 26 & 27 2018
1. Railways emerges as the Preferred Carrier of Automobile in the Country
Indian Railways has emerged as the most preferred mode of transportation given the low cost of transportation, faster service, reliability and safety offered by railway system. In 2017-18, around 29 million vehicles were produced in country registering a growth of 14.78 percent over the same period last year. Indian Railways in recent time have undertaken a number of initiatives to capture automobile traffic. Indian Railways is working closely with automobile industry to develop policies which are mutually beneficial to industry as well as Railways.
2. Indu Malhotra – first woman lawyer elevated directly – takes oath as SC judge
President Ram Nath Kovind appointed Indu Malhotra as a judge of the Supreme Court. She is the first woman lawyer from the Supreme Court bar to be directly elevated. In 2007, Malhotra, was only the second woman to be appointed a senior advocate by the apex court, three decades after Leila Seth first made history.
3. Indian girls and boys won South Asian Under-12 Qualifying Tennis Tournament
Indian girls and boys have won South Asian Under 12 Qualifying Tennis Tournament. Both the teams have qualified for ITF Asian 12 and Under Team Championship.
Indian girls defeated host Nepal by 2-0 in the final in Lalitpur. In the first match India’s Durganshi easily defeated Aaza Regmi of Nepal in the straight sets by 6-0, 6-0. In the second match Anjali Rathi also did not face much difficulty against her Nepalese opponent. She beat Subhangee Laxmi Shah by 6-0, 6-1.
Indian boys also defeated their Nepali opponents in the final by 2-0. In the first match Harsh Fogatt beat Aki Zuben Rawat by 7-5, 6-2 in the straight sets. India’s Vansh Nandal defeated Aarav Samrat Hada of Nepal by 6-4, 6-3 in the second match.
4. Srinagar’s Nadiya Shafi wins Martha Farrell award
Nadiya Shafi, a video reporter from Srinagar, has won this year’s ‘ Martha Farrell Award for Excellence in Women’s Empowerment ‘, carrying a cash prize of Rs 1.50 lakh. The award is in recognition of Nadiya’s commitment towards gender equality and leading gender discussions clubs in her hometown defying patriarchal norms. Nadiya is currently in the process of expanding these clubs to Shopian and Phulwama districts of southern Kashmir.
Instituted in the memory of Dr. Martha Farrell, a prominent activist for gender equality and women’s empowerment, the award is co-sponsored by Rizwan Adatia Foundation (RAF) and Participatory Research in Asia (PRIA), and supported by Martha Farrell Foundation (MFF).
Martha was killed in Kabul in a terrorist attack in 2015, while leading a gender training workshop for the Aga Khan Foundation.
5. US to end protected status of 9,000 Nepal earthquake victims
The US will end the protected immigration status granted to nearly 9,000 Nepal earthquake victims. The status was granted by former President Barack Obama’s administration in 2015 after thousands of people were left homeless due to devastation caused by the earthquake. After reviewing current conditions in Nepal, the US said the country “can now adequately manage return of its nationals”.
6. US to expand its military operation in Syria
US Defense Secretary James Mattis has said that the country will expand its military operation in Syria amid the increase in Islamic State offensives in the region. The US will expand its anti-ISIS operation with the help of regional states. Last month, President Donald Trump announced that US troops would be leaving Syria “very soon” since ISIS had been defeated.
7. North and South Korea to end 65-year-long Korea war
North and South Korea has agreed to sign a peace treaty to end the 65-year-long Korean war. “There will be no more war on the Korean Peninsula and a new era of peace has begun,” the two countries said. The decisions follow a historic meeting between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in.
8. PM Modi reaches China for informal talks with Prez Jinping
Prime Minister Narendra Modi reached China to hold informal talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping. The leaders are scheduled to meet at the Hubei Provincial Museum, after which they’ll hold talks at the East Lake Guest House in the company of six officials from each side.
9. Most atolls will be unlivable by 2050 due to flooding: Study
A study led by the US Geological Survey has warned that thousands of low-lying coral atoll islands would be rendered uninhabitable by the mid-21st century owing to frequent flooding events. Such flooding would not only impact infrastructure, but also make the limited freshwater resources non-potable, directly threatening the sustainability of human populations, said the researchers.
10. 12,000 plastic pieces found per litre of Arctic sea ice
German scientists have found a record 12,000 microplastic particles per litre of Arctic sea ice in ice core samples, two to three times higher than previous measurements. Researchers found 17 different types of plastic, including packaging materials like polyethylene, besides paints, nylon, and cigarette filter ingredients. The team raised concerns about its impact on marine life and human health
11. India ranks 138th in World Press Freedom Index 2018
India’s ranking in the Press Freedom Index has fallen two places to 138. This year, the index has been topped by Norway again for the second year, followed by Sweden at second and the Netherlands at third. As per Reporters Without Borders (RSF)’s survey, North Korea remained the most repressive country followed by Eritrea, Turkmenistan, Syria and then China.
The index is based on an evaluation of media freedom that measures pluralism, media independence, the quality of the legal framework and the safety of journalists in 180 countries. It also includes indicators of the level of media freedom violations in each region.
12. Bureau of Indian Standards grants first license for Liquid Chlorine on all India basis
Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) granted First Licence to M/s Gujarat Alkalies and Chemicals Ltd for Liquid Chlorine on All India basis. This is the First Licence granted on All India basis. The licence has been made operative with effect from 12th April, 2018 for a period of one year. This product is in liquid form and stored in metal containers. It is usually used as a gas obtained by evaporating the liquid from the metal container.
13. Government launches Seed import-export portal
Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh has launched a portal to facilitate export-import of seeds and planting material. A seed import-export portal has been developed for making the trade process easy. With the launch of this portal, all organisations importing-exporting seeds will not be required to submit their applications in 20 copies.
14. Mike Pompeo sworn in as US Secretary of State after Senate Confirmation
Former CIA Director Mike Pompeo was sworn in as America’s 70th Secretary of State, after the US Senate confirmed his nomination by 57-42 votes. Pompeo succeeds Rex Tillerson, who was fired by President Donald Trump last month. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito swore in Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in the West Conference Room of the Supreme Court.
15. 23rd meeting of Western Zonal Council held in Gandhinagar
The 23rd meeting of the Western Zonal Council was held in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, under the chairmanship of the Union home minister Rajnath Singh. The meeting was attended by the Chief Ministers of Maharashtra and Gujarat, Ministers of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Goa and Administrator of the Union Territories of Daman & Diu and Dadra & Nagar Haveli, and senior officers from Central and State Governments.
16. Vistara becomes member of IATA
Vistara has become the third Indian carrier to be a member of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the trade association of more than 280 airlines. The move will help the airlines to provide a seamless travel experience through an extended global network of travelers to and from India. The two other Indian carriers that are IATA members include Air India and Jet Airways.