Latest Current Affairs – August 27 2018
1. Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway confirms investment in Paytm
World’s third richest person Warren Buffett-led American conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway confirmed that the company has made an investment in Paytm’s parent company One97 Communications. However, it clarified that Buffett is not directly involved in the transaction. Earlier reports said the company is investing up to ₹2,500 crore for 3-4% stake in Paytm, valuing the startup at $10 billion.
2. Govt permits commercial flying of drones in country from Dec 1
The government announced that industries including real estate, power and agriculture will be able to legally fly drones in the country for commercial purposes from December 1. Initially, drones will be allowed only along visual line-of-sight during day-time with a maximum altitude of 400 feet. The usage of drones for delivering goods and food items has been restricted.
3. US, Mexico to replace NAFTA with new trade deal
The US and Mexico reached a deal to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with the ‘United States-Mexico Trade Agreement’. Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto said his country wanted to incorporate NAFTA partner Canada into the new deal. US President Donald Trump had threatened to withdraw from NAFTA, claiming that the trilateral deal disadvantaged the US.
4. Neeraj gives India 1st javelin gold in Asiad history
Neeraj Chopra became the first-ever Indian javelin thrower to win a gold medal at the Asian Games. The 20-year-old junior world record holder hurled the javelin to a distance of 88.06m to bag the Asiad gold. Notably, Neeraj had also become the first Indian to bag gold in javelin throw at the Commonwealth Games earlier this year.
5. Iran, Syria agree to expand military cooperation
Iran and Syria have signed a deal to expand military cooperation after Iranian Defence Minister Amir Hatami’s visit to the country. Iran also pledged to help reconstruct the war-torn country, following Hatami’s meeting with his Syrian counterpart Ali Abdullah Ayoub and President Bashar al-Assad. Iran is supporting Assad’s government in Syria’s ongoing civil war.
6. SpiceJet successfully operates India’s 1st biofuel-powered flight
SpiceJet successfully completed India’s first ever biofuel-powered test flight. The airline flew a Bombardier Q400 aircraft using 75% aviation turbine fuel and 25% biojet fuel from Dehradun to New Delhi. Around 20 people including officials from the aviation regulator and SpiceJet were onboard the test flight that lasted for around 25 minutes.
7. SBI suggested its customers to switch to EVM cards
State Bank of India (SBI), the country’s largest lender, has asked its customers to replace their ATM cards for Europay, MasterCard, Visa (EMV) chip based ATM-cum-debit cards with magnetic stripe before December 31.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had asked banks to issue only chip-based and Personal Identification Number (PIN) enabled debit and credit cards to protect customers from frauds. EMV chip card protects against counterfeit skimming (card fraud). EMV chip card and PIN protects against both counterfeit skimming and lost and stolen card fraud.
8. Emmerson Mnangagwa was sworn in as President of Zimbabwe
Emmerson Mnangagwa was officially sworn in as President of Zimbabwe. He pledged to protect and promote the rights of Zimbabweans at an inauguration ceremony attended by thousands of supporters at a stadium in Harare.
It was the country’s first bitterly-contested election since the ousting of strongman Robert Mugabe. In the election held on July 30, Mr.Mnangagwa won and was challenged by the main Opposition leader Nelson Chamisa. He hailed his victory as a new “dawn” for Zimbabwe after years of repression and economic mismanagement.
9. Myanmar Media Group inks MoU With Prasar Bharati
The agreement was signed in the presence of Prasar Bharati CEO, Shashi Shekhar Vempati and Editor-in-chief and MD, Mizzima in New Delhi. The main aim of the agreement is to maintain cooperation and collaboration in broadcasting and envisions content-sharing covering a wide range of genres, including culture, entertainment, education, science, news and sports along with other areas of mutual interest.
10. UK Varma appointed as Assocham Secretary General
He succeeds DS Rawat who held the position for nearly 14 years. The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) is one of the apex trade associations of India. The organization represents the interests of trade and commerce in India and acts as an interface between issues and initiatives.
11. India’s Largest Business Incubator Bhamashah Techno Hub Launched In Jaipur
The main aim of the Techno Hub is to strengthen the startup ecosystem in Rajasthan. The incubator will provide end-to-end support to startups, ranging from infrastructure, technology, angel funding, access to venture capitalists, mentorship, exposure to national and international organizations and experts.
12. Former President Pranab Mukherjee Launches NETA App To Rate MPs And MLAs
NETA National Electoral Transformation (NETA) Leaders Report Card App, the brainchild of 27-year-old entrepreneur Pratham Mittal is a platform where voters can review and rate their elected representatives and hold them accountable as well.
14. Third Indian Ocean Conference held in Hanoi, Vietnam
With successive two years in its bag, the third edition of Indian Ocean Conference is set to begin on August 27 at Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. The theme of the two- day conference will focus on ‘Building Regional Architectures’, particularly with regards to trade and commerce, security and governance. This year’s conference will see 43 countries as participants while 28 ministers and officials are set to address the event.
15. BNHS to open its first regional centre near Chilika Lake
The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), one of India’s premier avian research institutes, will start operating its regional centre on the campus of Wetland Research and Training Centre near Chilika Lake.
The BNHS has been active in avian research in the Chilika Lake, which hosts nearly one million birds with 97 species being intercontinental migratory in nature during the winter season. The avifauna observatory will be inaugurated by BNHS director Deepak Apte.
16. Madhya Pradesh Government seeks revival of Cheetah Reintroduction Project
The Madhya Pradesh forest department has written to the National Tiger Conservation Authority to revive the plan to reintroduce cheetahs in the State’s Nauradehi sanctuary. The ambitious project, conceived in 2009, had hit a roadblock for want of funds. The country’s last spotted feline died in Chhattisgarh in 1947. Later, the cheetah — which is the fastest land animal — was declared extinct in India in 1952.