Latest Current Affairs – January 03 2018
1. Ireland criminalises emotional abuse under domestic violence law
Emotional and psychological abuse has become a crime in Ireland under a new domestic violence law that came into effect recently. “The effect of non-violent control in an intimate relationship can be as harmful to victims as physical abuse because it’s an abuse of the unique trust associated with an intimate relationship,” Justice and Equality Minister Charlie Flanagan said.
2. Chinese spacecraft shares 1st image from Moon’s far side
China’s robotic probe, Chang’e 4, which became the first human-made object to land on far side of the Moon, has shared its first image. Chang’e 4 landed in the South Pole-Aitken basin, the largest and oldest impact basin on the Moon. Only one face of the Moon is visible from Earth due to its close orbit.
3. Kohli fastest to 19,000 international runs, breaks Sachin’s record
India captain Virat Kohli has become the fastest batsman to reach 19,000 international runs, achieving the feat in his 399th innings during the fourth Test against Australia. Kohli surpassed former India batsman Sachin Tendulkar, who had reached the feat in 432 innings. Kohli had become the fastest to reach 18,000 international runs (382 innings) in September last year.
4. UP to impose 0.5% ‘gau kalyan’ cess to fund cow shelters
Uttar Pradesh cabinet has cleared a policy for implementation of a 0.5% cow welfare cess or ‘gau kalyan’ cess. This would help the state earn additional Rs 34 crore for constructing and maintaining cattle shelters to accommodate at least 1,000 stray cattle per district. The additional levy on excise items may include alcohol and impact its price in the state.
5. RBI forms expert panel on MSMEs under ex-SEBI chief UK Sinha
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has set up a committee under former SEBI Chairman UK Sinha to address issues regarding the sustainability of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). The eight-member committee will also examine factors affecting the availability of finance to MSMEs. This comes after RBI allowed one-time restructuring of MSME loans of up to Rs 25 crore.
6. ISRO launches ‘Samwad’ with students to engage them on space science
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has launched Samwad with students as part of its outreach programme. The Indian Space agency will engage youngsters across the country in activities concerning space science under this programme. The new conversation mission will inspire students cutting across schools and colleges.
During the inauguration in Bengaluru, 40 students and 10 teachers from select schools interacted with ISRO Chairman Dr. K Sivan about the Indian Space Programme and their benefits to the common man.
7. HDFC MF surpasses ICICI Prudential MF to become largest AMC in India
HDFC Mutual Fund has pipped ICICI Prudential MF to become the country’s largest asset management company after a gap of over two years. As of December-end, HDFC MF manages assets to the tune of Rs 3.35 lakh crore, while those of ICICI Prudential MF stood at Rs 3.08 lakh crore, as per the latest data available with Association of Mutual funds in India (Amfi). The assets under management (AUM) of HDFC MF have grown over 9 per cent in October-December quarter from the previous three-month period, however, ICICI Prudential MF’s AUM slipped by 0.6 per cent during the period under review.
8. Sweden ranked first in climate action CCPI
Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) reported that Sweden has been named the first best performing country in the CCPI 2019 list. CCPI evaluates the climate protection performance of 60 countries, responsible for over 90% of global energy-related CO2 emissions.
Morocco has been named second. Morocco, the North African country significantly increased the share of renewables over the past five years and increased new renewable energy capacity. Lithuania is in the third position in CCPI 2019.
The bottom five in the list are Saudi Arabia, U.S., Iran, South Korea, and Taiwan. With the connection of the world’s largest solar plant to the grid, Morocco is on track for achieving its target of 42% installed renewable energy capacities by 2020.
9. Manoj Das was awarded the Kabi Samrat Upendra Bhanja National Award
Manoj Das, an eminent English and Odia writer, received the Kabi Samrat Upendra Bhanja National Award for Lifetime Achievement in Literature. This ceremony was instituted by the Berhampur University, Odisha. During the 53rd foundation day ceremony, the university also honoured noted folk dance guru Nabaghana Parida with Dakshin Odisha Loksanakruti Samman.
10. French World Cup champions awarded Legion of Honour
France‘s football team which last year defeated Croatia to win the World Cup were awarded the Legion of Honour, France’s highest award for “exceptional service” to the nation, in the New Year’s honors list.
The football World Cup 2018 at Russia was France’s second World Cup title, after the 1998 World Cup. Each of the 23 players of the French football team, including star strikers Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Griezmann, received France’s top medal for their part in beating Croatia in the World Cup final in Moscow.
11. Cabinet approved the amendment on Trade Unions Act
The Union Cabinet approved the amendment on Trade Unions Act, 1926, to facilitate recognition of trade unions at the Central and federal level. The amendment was proposed by the Centre. Most trade unions opposed the proposed amendments saying the government was trying to interfere in, and cripple, their functioning. Ten Central trade unions had earlier written to the Labour Ministry objecting to the draft version of the amendment Bill; the only major standout was the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh, affiliated to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.
The amendment will ensure that the nomination of workers’ representatives in tripartite bodies by the government will become more transparent and reduce litigation and industrial unrest. Trade unions which are recognised under the amended law would be accountable in maintaining industrial harmony. Ten Central trade unions have issued a general strike call on January 8 and 9.
12. Israel and US officially withdraw from UNESCO over ‘anti-Israel’ bias
The US had notified UNESCO of its decision to quit the organisation in October 2017 and had called for its “fundamental reform”. Israel followed the US in quitting UNESCO. The Paris-based organisation has previously criticised Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem and granted full membership to Palestine in 2011.
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) was co-founded by the US after World War II with the mission of seeking to “build peace through international cooperation in Education, the Sciences and Culture.”
13. Justice AK Sikri nominated as Executive Chairman of NALSA by President Ram Nath Kovind
President Ram Nath Kovind nominated Justice Arjan Kumar Sikri as Executive Chairman of National Legal Services Authority (NALSA). His appointment is effective from December 31, 2018.