GA- 05 Dec 2017
Dec 05: World Soil Day
- The World Soil Day is celebrated every year on Dec 05 by Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations.
The day aims to communicate messages on the importance of soil quality for food security, healthy ecosystems and human well-being.
- 2017 Theme: ‘Caring for the Planet starts from the Ground’.
- The theme seeks to highlight importance of soil in human livelihoods and increase in degradation of soil resources worldwide due to inappropriate management practices, population pressure driving unsustainable intensification and inadequate governance over this essential resource.
ADB funds $580 million for Reliance’s Bangladesh power plant project
- The Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Board of Directors has approved debt financing and partial risk guarantees totalling $583 million to develop the Reliance Bangladesh Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and Power Project.
- The Project, which includes a power generation facility to be located in Meghnaghat, near Dhaka, and an LNG Terminal, near Kutubdia Island south of Chitagong, will significantly increase power generation and improve energy infrastructure in Bangladesh.
- The financing package of ADB includes loans and partial risk guarantees for the power generation facility, as well as for the LNG terminal and the power project, being set up for $1 billion.
- ADB’s support will help Reliance Power Limited to develop an initial approximately 750 megawatts (MW) of gross power generation capacity and terminal facilities for LNG import.
First International Exhibition and Conference on AYUSH and Wellness sector inaugurated
- The first International Exhibition and Conference on AYUSH and Wellness sector, AROGYA 2017 inaugurated by AYUSH Minister Shripad Naik in New Delhi.
- It was organised by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) in collaboration with Union Ministry of AYUSH and Ministry of Commerce & Industry and Pharmaceuticals Export Promotion Council (Pharmexcil).
- The theme of AROGYA 2017 is ‘Enhancing the global potential of AYUSH’.
- it aims to promote and strengthen awareness and interest about AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, Sowa-Rigpa and Homoeopathy).
- It will give boost to AYUSH Products in International Market. Exhibit research and latest developments in AYUSH sector and harness its potential.
UP’s Shamli Becomes 23rd District to be Included in NCR
- Uttar Pradesh’s Shamli become the 23rd district to be included in the National Capital Region.
- The decision to include Shamli in the NCR was taken at the 37th meeting of the NCRPB Cities in the NCR get funds at “attractive” interest rates from the National Capital Region Planning Board (NCRPB) for infrastructure development.
- Besides Delhi, there are at present 22 districts- 13 of Haryana, seven of Uttar Pradesh and two of Rajasthan in the NCR.
- It was decided that the NCR participating states need to expedite preparation of the sub-regional plans for newly-added districts and complete the works by March 2018.
- The NCR and the associated National Capital Region Planning Board were created in 1985 to plan the development of the region and to evolve harmonized policies for the control of land-uses and development of infrastructure in the region
Venezuela launches new virtual currency, Petro
- Venezuela has launched its own cryptocurrency called Petro to circumvent US-led financial sanctions.
- It will be backed by the country’s vast natural resource reserves.
- In this regard, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has approved the creation of BlockchainBase observatory to oversee development and rollout of new cryptocurrency.
- The Petro aims to help Venezuela to advance in issues of monetary sovereignty, to make financial transactions and overcome financial blockade.
- Its value will be pegged to country’s vast reserves of oil and gas as well as its mineral wealth, including gold.
US withdraws from UN Global Compact on Migration
- The United States has pulled out of UN Global Compact on Migration.
- It has argued that Obama-era negotiated UN compact process deal contains numerous provisions that inconsistent with country’s immigration and refugee policies and Trump Administration’s immigration principles.
6th International Tourism Mart 2017 held in Assam
- The 6th International Tourism Mart (ITM) 2017 was held in Guwahati, Assam.
- It was inaugurated by Assam Governor Jagdish Mukhi, Chief Minister Sarbanand Sonowal and Union Tourism minister K L Alphons.
- The three day program was organized by Union Ministry of Tourism in association with all North Eastern states.
- The focus areas of 6th ITM was to spotlight on India’s “Act East Policy”, blossoming ties with ASEAN and larger East Asia region, home to world’s rapidly growing economies and India’s emerging tourism markets.
- The International Tourism Mart is an annual event organised in North Eastern States on rotation basis.
- Its objective is to highlight tourism potential of region in domestic and international markets.
Govt to constitute committee for drug pricing, new launches
- The Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP), Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers will constitute multi-disciplinary committee of experts for consultation on matters pertaining to implementation of drug price control order (DPCO) including technicalities involved in pricing and new launches.
- It will have member secretary of National Pharmaceutical Pricing authority (NPPA) as its convener.
- It will also have representatives from Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), Department of Health Research/Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and NIPER as members.
UAE, UK, US and French Armies Hold Joint Exercises in Abu Dhabi
- UAE Armed Forces along with the UK, US and French armies are participating in joint exercises in Abu Dhabi.
- The drill code is named as “Flag4”.
- The two-week long joint exercise aims to increase combat efficiency, gain more field expertise, and work to unify military concepts among participating parties.
Amitabh Bachchan launches Book on Indian Cinema
- Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan launched a book based on Indian cinema in showbiz capital Mumbai.
- The book, titled ‘Bollywood: The Films! The Songs! The Stars!’, is a coffee table book, which provides historical insights, lesser-known facts and behind-the-scene exclusives of the most iconic movies made in the history of the Indian film industry.
- The book is co-authored by S.M.M. Ausaja, Karan Bali, Rajesh Devraj and Tanul Thakur, the book on India’s tinsel town is published by British multinational publishing company Dorling Kindersley (DK).
Indian-American senator Kamala Harris tops global thinkers list
- Indian-American California senator Kamala Harris has topped the prestigious Foreign Policy magazine’s 2017 list of ’50 Leading Global Thinkers’ which also features US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley.
- Besides Harris and Haley, Indian-origin stand-up comedian Hasan Minhaj has also made it to the list which recognises a remarkable range of individuals who have found ways to exert enormous influence, often in unexpected ways, on a wide range of issues.
Veteran actor Shashi Kapoor passes away
- Veteran Bollywood actor Shashi Kapoor passed away in Mumbai, Maharashtra reportedly due to kidney failure. He was 79.
- Iconic star of Indian cinema was worn in the first family of Hindi film industry.
- He had starred in more than hundred movies, out of which he was the lead actor in at least 61.