Latest Current Affairs – December 03 2018
1. Croatia captain Modrić wins Ballon d’Or Award
Midfielder Luka Modrić, who led Croatia to their first-ever FIFA World Cup final, won this year’s Ballon d’Or. The 33-year-old was named 2018 FIFA World Cup’s best player and had also won this year’s The Best FIFA Men’s Player award. This is the first time since 2007 that neither Cristiano Ronaldo nor Lionel Messi won the Ballon d’Or.
2. AN Jha to take over as new Finance Secretary from Hasmukh Adhia
Ajay Narayan Jha, the Secretary of Department of Expenditure, has been appointed as new Finance Secretary to succeed Hasmukh Adhia who retired on November 30. Fifty-nine-year old Jha is a 1982-batch IAS officer of Manipur Tripura cadre. An alumnus of St Stephens College, he passed with first class in Graduation and Post Graduation in History.
3. WhatsApp launches first-ever TV campaign to fight fake news
WhatsApp launched its first-ever television campaign in India called ‘Share Joy, Not Rumours’ to address fake news ahead of 2019 general elections. It comprises three 60-second films that convey scenarios about dangerous rumours that spread via spam among user groups. “The campaign is timed to start just prior to the elections in Rajasthan and Telangana,” WhatsApp said.
4. Soyuz successfully launches 3 astronauts to ISS after failed launch
The Soyuz MS-11 was successfully launched from Kazakhstan to the International Space Station with a three-astronaut crew, after a failed launch in October. Soyuz entered target orbit within nine minutes of launch. Following a six-hour journey, the crew from US, Canada and Russia will dock the Soyuz to the station and spend the next six-and-a-half months on ISS.
5. UAE passport tops the Global Passport Power Rank 2018
As per the ratings released by Passport Index, the United Arab Emirates has topped the Global Passport Power Rank 2018, emerging as the country with the most powerful passport in world. UAE passport holders can now fly to 113 countries without a visa, and 54 others with a visa-on-arrival. UAE moved from third to first place overtaking Germany and Singapore.
6. World Bank to raise $200 billion to fight climate change
The World Bank Group said it will double its 5-year investments to $200 billion to fight climate change between 2021-2025. The fund will aid high-quality forecasts, early warning systems and climate information services. World Bank will contribute $100 billion and the rest will be raised by International Finance Corporation, Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency and private capital.
7. Yes Bank appoints former IRDAI chief TS Vijayan as director
Private sector lender Yes Bank appointed former IRDAI Chairman TS Vijayan as an independent director for a period of five years. He is already a member of the search committee set up to identify a successor for Yes Bank CEO Rana Kapoor. Vijayan has also served as the Chairman of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC).
8. Qatar to withdraw from OPEC after nearly 60 years
Qatar will withdraw from the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in January after nearly 60 years, country’s energy minister Saad al-Kaabi said. The decision to withdraw from OPEC came after Qatar reviewed ways to enhance its role internationally and plan its long-term strategy. Qatar is one of OPEC’s smallest producers but the world’s largest liquefied natural gas exporter.
9. International conference on bears starts in Agra
More than 80 delegates from 11 countries are participating in an international conference on bears being organised in the Taj city for the first time. Hosted by Wildlife SOS, a conservation non-profit, the conference from December 3-6 is focused on bear care, wildlife conservation and human wildlife conflict mitigation and is in collaboration with Bear Care Group from the US and Canada. The conference aims to share knowledge on principles of welfare of bears and other wild animals in zoos, sanctuaries and rescue centres.
10. NASA to launch VISIONS 2 to image Earths leaky atmosphere
NASA is set to launch VISIONS-2 rocket to get a closer look at the how the earth’s atmosphere is leaking into space. The VISIONS-2 mission, Visualizing Ion Outflow via Neutral Atom Sensing-2, is scheduled to be launched on December 4. Understanding atmospheric escape on earth has applications all over the Universe, from predicting which planets might be habitable, to piecing together how Mars became a desolate landscape.
A sounding rocket makes brief, targeted flights into space before falling back to Earth just a few minutes later. Sounding rockets are unique among scientific spacecraft for their superior dexterity.
They can be carted to remote locations, where they are aimed and shot into short-lived events, like the sudden formation of the aurora borealis, at a moment’s notice. The aurora borealis is of keen interest to the VISIONS-2 team, but not just for its otherworldly glow. The aurora play are fundamental drivers in the process of atmospheric escape, whereby planets, including Earth, gradually leak their atmosphere into space.
11. State Bank of Mauritius gets RBI approval for subsidiary
Mauritius based SBM group granted a license by Reserve Bank of India to operate SBM Bank (India) Limited through Wholly Owned Subsidiary (WOS) mode under the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 with effect from December 1, 2018.
Now at present SBM operate its branches in Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Ramachandrapuram since 1994. It plans to open six new branches in Delhi, Bangalore, Kolkata, Pune, Ahmedabad, and Jaipur by next year.
12. Ex Cope India 18, the bilateral military exercise between IAF and the U.S., began
The Air Forces of India (IAF) and the U.S. began the ‘Ex Cope India-18’, a 12-day military exercise, in the Kalaikunda and Panagarh air bases in West Bengal. The aim is to enhance operational coordination and to provide operational exposure and undertake the mutual exchange of best practices towards enhancing operational capability.
This exercise is the fourth edition in the series of bilateral drills between the Indian Air Force and the U.S. Air Force. This is for the first time, the exercise is being held at two Air Force bases. The U.S. has sent a fleet of F15 C/D and C-130 military aircraft. The IAF is participating with the Su-30 MKI, Jaguar, Mirage 2000, C-130J and AWACS (Airborne Warning and Control System) aircraft.
13. Andrs Manuel Lpez Obrador became first leftist president of Mexico
He became as President and signed an agreement with three Central American counterparts to create a plan to stem the flow of migrants seeking asylum in the USA.
♦ Capital – Mexico City
♦ National language – Spanish
♦ Currency – Peso (MXN)
14. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated the Hornbill Festival of Nagaland
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated the 10-day-long Hornbill Festival of Nagaland at Naga Heritage Village Kisama on 1st December 2018. More than 60,000 people have visited the Hornbill Festival.
The assistant director of Tourism department (Statistics) T. Khakihe Sumi said that altogether 63,032 visitors with 780 foreigners have visited the picturesque venue. The inaugural day had 19,953 visitors. The count increased up to 43,079 on the second day of the festival.
The visitors were treated with cultural performances from across the country including Odisha, Assam, Manipur, Madhya Pradesh, Meghalaya and Jammu and Kashmir.
15. Raninder Singh becomes first Indian to be elected ISSF Vice President
The elections were held during the General Assembly meeting of ISSF in Munich in which Raninder secured 161 votes to make it to the coveted position. The 51-year-old Raninder is currently the president of the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI).
The NRAI president was also awarded the ISSF diploma of honor gold medal at the General Assembly by the outgoing longest-serving president of the ISSF, Olegario Vázquez Raña, who was at the helm for 38 years.