Current Affairs Daily Digest -September 21 2018
1. Russian tennis player nicknamed ‘Colonel’ retires with 499 wins
Russia’s Mikhail Youzhny, who is nicknamed ‘Colonel’, retired from professional tennis one win short of 500 career wins. Youzhny, who reached the US Open semifinals twice in his career, was playing his career’s final tournament in the St. Petersburg Open in Russia. The 36-year-old Youzhny won 10 tour titles and reached a career-high ranking of eighth in 2008.
2. NASA telescope discovers 2 new planets 5 months after launch
NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, known as TESS, has spotted “hot Earth” and “super-Earth” planets in solar systems 49 and 60 light-years away, marking its first discovery since April launch. TESS is designed to build on the work of its predecessor, Kepler space telescope, which discovered over 2,500 confirmed exoplanets in 20 years and is now running out of fuel.
3. US sanctions China for buying Russian jets, missiles
The US State Department imposed sanctions against the Chinese military for buying Russian Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets and S-400 air defence missile systems. The US also blacklisted 33 people and entities associated with the Russian intelligence. China has called on the US to withdraw the sanctions or “bear the consequences”.
4. Vietnam President Tran Dai Quang dies aged 61
Vietnam’s President Tran Dai Quang passed away at the age of 61 of a serious illness, the state media reported. Before being appointed Vietnam’s President in 2016, Quang served as the Public Security Minister. He was also a member of the Communist Party of Vietnam’s Politburo, the party’s top decision-making body.
5. Pakistan issues stamps commemorating Burhan Wani as ‘freedom icon’
In an attempt to highlight the Kashmir issue, Pakistan released 20 “commemorative” postage stamps, one of which portrays slain terrorist Burhan Wani as a ‘freedom icon’. The stamps were reportedly issued on July 24 to locally and internationally highlight the “plight of people living in Kashmir”. The stamps have captions like “use of pellet guns” and “mass graves”, among others.
6. India signed $74 mn loan pact with World Bank for Uttarakhand Workforce Development Project
The Uttarakhand Workforce Development Project (UKWDP) has a 5-year grace period, and a maturity of 17 years. The closing date for the project is June, 2023.
The project has three components —
♦ improving the quality and relevance of Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) training;
♦ increasing the number of skilled workers certified under National Skills Qualification Framework (NSQE);
♦ policy and institutional development and project management.
7. Anindo Majumdar appointed as new Secretary of Central Vigilance Commission
He was the chief secretary of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and appointed as financial commissioner of Delhi in July. In another appointment Kamlesh Nilkanth Vyas, Director of Bhaba Atomic Research Centre has been appointed as Secretary, Department of Atomic Energy and Chairman of Atomic Energy Commission.