Saturday, December 15, 2018


1.      On November 1, former Indian cricket captain Rahul Dravid has officially been inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame for his stupendous achievements in international cricket. In a ceremony held ahead of the fifth and final ODI between India and West Indies in Thiruvananthapuram, Dravid was presented with the HoF cap by Sunil Gavaskar. With this, Dravid became only the fifth player from India to be named in the elite list. The other four Indians are former skippers Bishan Singh Bedi, Sunil Gavaskar, Kapil Dev and Anil Kumble. Dravid, also popularly known as 'the Wall' had been a long-standing rock of Indian cricket for over 15 years. In all, he aggregated 13,288 runs in 164 Tests with 36 centuries and 10,889 runs in 344 ODIs with 12 centuries. He was also a brilliant slip fielder and finished his Test career in 2012 with 210 catches, which is a world record. He is currently the head coach of India A and India U-19 sides.

2.      Naveen Patnaik, the Chief Minister of Odisha, has recently launched 'Soura Jalanidhi' scheme which aims at increasing use of solar energy for helping farmers in irrigation. 'Soura Jalanidhi' is a dug well based solar pump irrigation system in convergence mode. Under the scheme, 5,000 solar pumps will be provided to farmers at a subsidy of 90 per cent to irrigate 2,500 acres of land. The chief minister also launched the web portal of this scheme on the occasion. The event was attended by 1,000 farmers from 30 districts through video conference. In the first phase, the facility will be available for farmers where electicity is not avaialable for operating pump sets. The solar pumps will be given to the beneficiary farmers at a subsidy of 90%. A total of Rs 27 crore will be spent for the programme. Farmers having valid farmer identification, belonging to small and marginal categories having minimum 0.5 acre cultivable land and a dug well will be covered under the programme.

3.      India has been ranked 77th in the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business Index 2018 . With this, India has jumped 23 places from 2017 in which it was ranked at 100th. In its annual 'Doing Business' 2019 report, World Bank stated that India improved its rank on six out of the 10 parameters relating to starting and doing business in a country.The report also recognises India as one of the top 10 improvers in this year's assessment, for the 2nd successive time. The Index ranks 190 countries across 10 indicators ranged across the lifecycle of a business from 'starting a business' to 'resolving insolvency'. These parameters include ease of starting a business, construction permits, getting electricity, getting credit, paying taxes, trade across borders, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency. New Zealand tops the list, followed by Singapore, Denmark, and Hong Kong.

4.      19-times world champion Pankaj Advani has won the second leg of Asian Snooker Tour title by delivering a power-packed performance to outclass China's Ju Reti 6-1 in the final at Jinan, China.With this, Advani has become the first Indian to win an Asian Snooker Tour event. The IBSF World Billiards and Snooker Championships is less than a fortnight away and the Indian star cueist is the defending champion in both sports. The new 10-red format of the Tour was well-received by all players as some fine performances were on display throughout the second leg. Pankaj Advani will now have to immediately switch to Billiards as Myanmar hosts the prestigious world championships from November 12 to 27.

5.      The Republic of Seychelles has launched the world's first sovereign blue bond – a financial instrument designed to support sustainable marine and fisheries projects. The bond developed with the assistance of the World Bank & was placed to 3 investors: Calvert Impact Capital, Nuveen and Prudential. The blue bond has a US$5m guarantee from the World Bank, and is also supported by a US$5m concessional loan from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) which will partially cover interest payments.The blue bond demonstrates the potential for countries to harness capital markets for financing the sustainable use of marine resources. It will include support for the expansion of marine protected areas, improved governance of priority fisheries and the development of the Seychelles' blue economy.

6.      Justice Debasish Kar Gupta has recently been sworn-in as the new chief justice of the Calcutta High Court. It is the oldest High Court in India and has jurisdiction over the state of West Bengal and the Union Territory of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The seat of the High Court is Kolkata, capital of West Bengal. The High Court building's design is based on the Cloth Hall, Ypres, in Belgium.

7.      On October 31, Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled the 'Statue of Unity' in Narmada district of Gujarat on the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. Sardar Patel – who served as the first Home Minister of independent India – is credited with uniting all 562 princely states in pre-independent India to build the Republic of India. That is why it is called the 'Statue Of Unity'. It is the world's tallest statue, with a height of 182m. It located around 3.5 km downstream from the Sardar Sarovar Dam, on islet Sadhu Bet on the bed of the river Narmada. The statue was designed by 93-yearold acclaimed sculptor Ram V. Sutar, who is Padma Bhushan awardee. It is built by Larsen & Toubro Ltd at a cost of Rs. 2,989 crore. The Statue of Unity is made up of 70,000 tonnes of cement, 18,500 tonnes of reinforcement steel, 6,000 tonnes of structural steel and 1,700 metric tonnes of bronze, which was used for the outer cladding of the structure. The viewing gallery at the height of 135 metres can accommodate up to 200 people at a time.

8.      The Maharashtra Cabinet has recently approved the conversion of decommissioned aircraft carrier INS Viraat into a floating museum. It will be India's first-ever moored maritime museum-cum-marine adventure centre. As per primary estimates, the project worth Rs 852 crore will be implemented through Public-Private-Partnership (PPP). It will be grouted (grounded, sealed to the seabed with concrete and moored) seven nautical miles off the Malvan coast at Nivati rocks in Sindhudurg. This will enable the tourists to see the diverse aquatic life and experience sky-diving, sailing and other thrilling sporting activities. Besides, it will make the new generation familiar with the glorious history of INS Viraat. INS Viraat, which holds a place of pride in Indian defence history, was decommissioned in March 2017 and since then has been laid up at the Naval Dockyard. INS Viraat was commissioned by Navy in 1987 and had taken part in all major military operations such as Operation Jupiter (1988, Sri Lanka peacekeeping mission), Operation Vijay (1999, post-Kargil), and Operation Parakram (2001, after Parliament attack). It was made in 1959 for the United Kingdom's Royal Navy as 'HMS Hermes' and was instrumental in the Falklands War victory. It is 743- foot long and 160-foot wide with a height of 29 feet.

9.      Recently, China has successfully launched its first geostationary BeiDou-3 satellite 'G1Q' into high orbit (about 36,000 km above the Earth) to boost its home-grown BeiDou global satellite navigation system. It was launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre in the southwestern Sichuan Province. In a geostationary orbit, following the Earth's rotation, it will view the same point on Earth continuously. The satellite is meant to serve countries in the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Apart from radio navigation system, the satellite is equipped with an improved radio determination satellite service that can provide short message services to 10 million subscribers each hour. With an advanced satellite-based augmentation system, the satellite can also provide low-cost and reliable navigation services to civil aviation clients at home and abroad. The satellite is carrying hydrogen and rubidium atomic clocks, which will play a key role in positioning and timing accuracy. It will be the fourth global satellite navigation system after the United States (US) Global Position System (GPS), Russia's GLONASS and the European Union's Galileo. By around 2020, when the BeiDou system goes global, it will have more than 30 satellites.

10.  Steel manufacturing giant Tata Steel has been named as an official partner of the 14th edition of the FIH men's hockey World Cup 2018 to continue their efforts of promoting development through sports across the country. The tournament is scheduled to be held at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Odisha from November 28 to December 16. India will host the upcoming prestigious 2018 FIH World Cup for the 3rd time after having played hosts in 1982 in Mumbai and in 2010 in New Delhi. A total of 16 nations will take part in the tournament which will see each team play three matches during the league stage over a span of 12 days before four cross-over matches take place on December 10 and 11.

11.  The first-ever Indo-Japan joint military exercise "Dharma Guardian- 2018" has started at a jungle warfare school in Mizoram's Vairengte with a focus on strengthening counter-terror cooperation. The focus of the two-week-long exercise will be to enhance tactical skills against global terrorism and increase inter-operability between the two forces. The Japanese contingent is represented by 32nd Infantry Battalion, while the Indian side by 6/1 Gorkha Rifles. The purpose of the exercise is to build and promote Army to Army relation in addition to exchange skills and experiences of both the armies. The exercise will comprise a balance of indoor classes and outdoor training activities. Both the armies will jointly train, plan and execute a series of well developed tactical drills for neutralisation of likely threats that may be encountered in urban warfare scenario.

12.  First time in Middle east, Qatar will host the 23rd edition of the World Corporate Games (WCG) in Doha in 2019, which will provide an opportunity for corporations around the world to showcase their competitive prowess through sports. It will be the first time that the WCG incorporate eSports and mindsports. The event features both individual and team competitions, open equally to women and men of all ages and abilities with team events for skilled, semi-skilled or novice participants.It is an allinclusive event with paragames integrated for various categories as well. The World Corportate Games (WCG) aims to bring together, the local, regional and international business sporting community. The sporting event takes place every one to two years and the 2018 edition was held in Houston in the US.

13.  The World Vegan Day (WVD) is observed every year on November 1 to commemorate the holistic benefits of switching to veganism. Veganism is the practice of abstaining from consuming any animal products, including milk, curd, eggs, cheese, honey, and meat amongst other derived products.

14.  On November 1, the Union Cabinet has approved a proposal to rename the Jharsuguda airport of Odisha after eminent freedom fighter Veer Surendra Sai. Renaming of the Jharsuguda airport in his name will fulfill long-pending demand of the Odisha Government, which reflects the sentiments of the local public of the respective area. It will also be a befitting tribute to the contribution of the revered personality associated with the State. Veer Surendra Sai, who was born on 22nd January 1809 in Sambalpur district of the State, had sacrificed his life fighting against British East India company. He and his associates resisted the British and successfully protected most parts of Western Odisha region for some time from the British rule. Many of them were hanged by the British & a few died in the Cellular Jail in the Andamans. Surendra Sai died in Asirgarh Jail on 23rd May 1884.

15.  Simone Biles, an American artistic gymnast, has become the first ever gymnast to win 13 world championship gold medals with victory in the individual vault competition in Doha, Qatar on November 2, 2018. She broke the all-time record set by Belarusian male gymnast Vitaly Scherbo in 1996.

16.  The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has recently permitted banks to grant Partial Credit Enhancement (PCE), or a partial guarantee, to bonds issued by systematically important non-deposit taking Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFC-ND-SIs) registered with the Reserve Bank of India and Housing Finance Companies (HFCs) registered with National Housing Bank. The move is aimed at enhancing the credit rating of the bonds and enabling these NBFCs to access funds from the bond market on better terms. PCE is expected to help NBFCs and HFCs raise money from insurance and provident or pension funds who invest only in highly-rated instruments. The proceeds from the bonds, whose tenor cannot be less than three years, backed by PCE from banks can only be utilised for refinancing the existing debt. The central bank has restricted the exposure of a bank through PCEs to bonds issued by each such NBFC or HFC to 1% of capital funds of the bank within the current single and group borrower exposure limits.

17.  The United Nations (UN) has designated every 31st of October as World Cities Day (WCD) to promote the international community's interest in global urbanization, enhance cooperation among countries and cities in meeting opportunities and addressing challenges of urbanization, and contribute to sustainable urban development. This year, the United Nations has selected the 2018 theme 'Building Sustainable and Resilient Cities' because cities need support to become resilient and develop their capacity to absorb the impact of hazards, protect and preserve human life and limit damage to and destruction of public and private assets while continuing to provide infrastructure and services after a crisis. The main event was celebrated in Liverpool, UK.

18.  India and Japan has recently a Loan Agreement worth Rs. 1817 crore for the 'Project for the Construction of Turga Pumped Storage (I)' in the State of West Bengal. The purpose of the Project is to strengthen the capability to respond to fluctuation in supply and demand of power and to improve stability of the power supply by constructing the pumped storage facilities, thereby contributing to the Industrial Development and Living Standard Improvement in the State of West Bengal.

19.  Mary Kom, a five-time World Champion, has been named the Brand Ambassador of the 10th edition of theWomen's World Boxing Championships (WWBC-2018). The World Championships is scheduled to be held at the IG Stadium's K.D. Jhadav Hall in New Delhi from November 15 and 24. It will see close to 300 pugilists from 70 countries across 10 weight categories, the tournament's highest-ever participation, including Olympic medalists, World and European Champions.

20.  The 2nd edition of the India International Cherry Blossom (IICB) festival in Shillong, which is is scheduled to be held from November 14 and 17. It is the world's only autumn cherry blossom festival. The fest will celebrate the unique mass flowering of autumn Himalayan cherry blossoms with several cultural events in the Meghalaya capital. The visitors can enjoy fashion shows, rock concerts, beauty pageants and also compete in an amateur golf tournament. Alongside, there will be stalls showcasing the food, arts and crafts of the region, and several cultural events and a food pavilion of Japan in partnership with the Embassy of Japan in India. It is expected that the fest will attract more than one lakh visitors from across the world.

21.  The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has initiated steps to set up a wide-based digital Public Credit Registry (PCR) to capture details of all borrowers, including wilful defaulters and also the pending legal suits in order to check financial delinquencies. The PCR will also include data from entities like market regulator SEBI, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Goods and Service Tax Network (GSTN) and the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) to enable the banks and financial institutions to get 360 degree profile of existing and prospective borrowers on a real-time basis. The central bank has invited expression of interest for developing the registry from companies with a turnover of over 100 crore rupees in the last three years. The PCR would be the single point of mandatory reporting for all material events for each loan, notwithstanding any threshold in the loan amount or type of borrower. Currently, there are multiple granular credit information repositories in India, with each having somewhat distinct objectives and coverage.

22.  The Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) has formed a new industry expert committee to develop and promote an augmented reality/virtual reality (AR/VR) ecosystem in India. The committee is chaired by Namrita Mahindro, Senior General Manager of digital transformation in Mahindra Group and co-chaired by Satyajeet Singh, Head –Strategic Product Partnership, India and South Asia, Facebook. The committee is a step in IAMAI's efforts to evangelise the nascent technology's ability to drive economic growth, job creation, and skill development in the country. The agenda of the committee will include nurturing India's AR/VR technology and talent ecosystem, in particular by driving Skill Development; engaging with business, industry and government to evangelize acceptance of the technology and helping drive training workshops to familarise potential users with technology and build use cases, in key sectors.

23.  The first Global Conference on Air Pollution and Health was held at World Health Organisation (WHO) Headquarters in Geneva on October 30, 2018. The 2-day conference was organized by WHO in collaboration with UN Environment, World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the Secretariat of the UNFCCC, the Climate and Clean Air Coalition to Reduce Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (CCAC) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). The theme of the conference was: "Improving Air Quality, Combating Climate Change- Saving Lives". Some 92% of people worldwide breathe unhealthy air, resulting in about 6.5 million deaths annually. In it, household air pollution is a leading killer in poor rural and urban homes. Thus, the event responds to a World Health Assembly mandate to combat one of the world's most significant causes of premature death. At the conclusion of the Conference, participants agreed an aspirational goal of reducing the number of deaths from air pollution by two thirds by 2030.

24.  The 'Little India Gate', the first-of-its-kind structure in Indonesia, has recently inaugurated at Kampung Madras or Madras Village area in Medan city, the 4th largest city in the country. It recognises the contribution of Indian community in the development of Medan city. The new structure was jointly by India's ambassador to Indonesia and Timor Leste Pradeep Kumar Rawat and Mayor of Medan H T Dzulmi Eldin S. About 7,000 people witnessed the historic moment with great enthusiasm. The Kampung Madras area is one of the city's significant ethnic enclaves comprising a large population of people of Indian descent whose ancestors had settled down in Medan in mid-19th century. Every year, Kampung Madras becomes a meeting point for Hindu and Tamil festivals such as Thaipusam or the Tamil New Year, Pongal and Deepavali.

25.  India's first asymmetrical cable-stayed bridge "Signature Bridge" has recently inaugurated by the Chief Minister of Delhi, Arvind Kejriwal across the Yamuna River. The bridge connects Outer Ring Road on the western flank of the Yamuna river with the Wazirabad Road on the east. It shortens the travel time between north and northeast Delhi. The 675-metre long bridge, originally conceptualised in 2004, has finally available for public use from November 5. Just like the Eiffel Tower in France, Signature Bridge will also have the facility to transport tourists on top of the main pillar, which is 154 m high, from where distance view of North Delhi can be seen.The pylon of the Signature bridge is tallest structure in Delhi and is double the height of Qutb Minar, which act as selfie points for people.

26.  The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has awarded the Assam Police for "good practices" under the Crime and Criminal Tracking Network & Systems (CCTNS), an egovernance project. The award was given for citizen centric service delivery, in which the state police has automated passport verification and Permanent Residential Certificate (PRC) services using the online CCTNS. Under the CCTNS, the force has recently launched a mobile application for ease of availability of services to the citizens, besides the existing online system.

27.  N. Ram, the veteran journalist and The Hindu publishing group chairman, has been chosen for the prestigious Raja Ram Mohan Roy Award 2018 for his outstanding contribution towards journalism. The award will be presented by the Press Council of India (PCI) on November 16 on the occasion of the National Press Day (NPD)

28.  HSBC Holdings Plc has executed India's first trade financial transaction using blockchain for a deal involving an export by Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) to US-based Tricon Energy. The blockchain-enabled letter of credit (LC) reduces transaction timeline from 7-10 days to less than a day. The Letter of Credit (LC) was issued by ING Bank for Tricon Energy USA (importer) with HSBC India as the advisory and negotiation bank for RIL. The blockchain platform was integrated with the electronic bill of lading (eBL) platform to issue and manage an electronic bill of lading. This allows a digital transfer of the title of goods from the seller to the buyer in the underlying trade. It is claimed that the blockchain solution is a major improvement for any organisation involved in buying and selling goods internationally, as it brings together all parties onto one platform. It is a distributed database that maintains a continuously-growing list of ordered records called blocks and is deemed to be very transparent as all the stakeholders can view progress real time.

29.  The Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) has recently approved the operationalisation strategy for Operation Greens to ensure availability of Tomato, Onion and Potato (TOP) throughout the country round the year without price volatility. Operation Greens was announced in the Budget speech of 2018-19 with an outlay of Rs. 500 crore to stabilize the supply of TOP crops. One of the objectives of "Operation Greens" is the reduction in post-harvest losses by creation of farm gate infrastructure, development of suitable agro-logistics, creation of appropriate storage capacity linking consumption centres.

30.  On November 6, Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government has renamed the newly-constructed Ekana International Cricket Stadium after former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. The stadium will now be known as 'Bharat Ratna Atal Bihari Vajpayee International Cricket Stadium' . It has a seating capacity of around 50,000 and will host its first international match on November 6, when the 2nd Twenty-20 match between India and the West Indies will be played in the stadium in Lucknow . Hence, Lucknow will host the first international match after 24 years. The stadium was named after Vajpayee, as the former prime minister was a Member of Parliament from Lucknow for five consecutive times between 1991 and 2009.

31.  The Supreme Court of India (SCI) has recently given nod for a separate High Court for Andhra Pradesh and it will start functioning from 1st January 2019. It will be the 25th high court in the country and will initially function from a temporary structure till the permanent building comes up in the ambitious Justice City complex in the State's capital Amaravati. Since the bifurcation of the State on June 2, 2014, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana have had a common high court situated at Hyderabad. The existing court will from next year be known as the Telangana High Court.

32.  In Bhubaneswar, the Odisha government has recently rolled out the technology-driven and citizen-friendly 'Mo bus' service featuring free wi-fi, CCTV surveillance, public information display system and on board announcements in the city. The service was launched as a part of state government-owned Capital Region Urban Transport's (CRUT) 'City Bus Modernisation' programme.It will also provide the Mo Bus mobile app through which passengers can book their tickets and get to know the locations of the vehicle to minimise their waiting time at the Bus Queue Shelters (BQS). The BQS will have advanced features like digital screens to display the bus route numbers and their arrival times for the waiting passengers. The bus service has been launched for the residents of Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and Puri.

33.  On November 5, the United States imposed the toughest ever sanctions on Iran aimed at altering the Iranian regime's "behaviour". The sanctions cover Iran's banking and energy sectors and reinstate penalties for countries and companies in Europe, Asia and elsewhere that do not halt Iranian oil imports. However, 8 countries – India, China, Italy, Greece, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Turkey — were temporarily allowed to continue buying Iranian oil as they showed "significant reduction" in oil purchase from the Persian Gulf country. The United States has exempted India from imposition of certain sanctions for the development of the strategically-located Chabahar Port in Iran, along with the construction of the railway line connecting it with Afghanistan. The decision by the Trump administration is being seen as a recognition by Washington of India's major role in the development of the port on the Gulf of Oman, which is of immense strategic importance for the reconstruction of war-torn Afghanistan. The Chabahar Port is considered a gateway to golden opportunities for trade by India, Iran and Afghanistan with central Asian countries besides ramping up trade among the three countries after Pakistan denied transit access to India.

34.  The tenure of the Lok Sabha Secretary General, Snehlata Shrivastava, has been extended by Speaker Sumitra Mahajan for one year. Snehlata, who is 1982-batch retired IAS officer of the Madhya Pradesh cadre, was appointed last year in rank and status of a Cabinet Secretary. She was scheduled to retire on the 30th of this month. Her extension will be effective from the 1st of December 2018 to the 30th of November 2019. She is the first woman Secretary General of the Lok Sabha.

35.  The Union Cabinet has recently approved Amendment to the Central Universities Act – 2009 for setting up of a Central Tribal University in Andhra Pradesh. A fund of Rs 420 crore has been granted as the first phase expenditure towards the establishment of the University. The 'Central Tribal University of Andhra Pradesh' will be set up in Relli village of Vizianagaram district as provided under the 13th schedule to the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2014.

36.  The 5th edition of World Buddhist Forum (WBF -2018) was recently held in Putian, the southeast Fujian Province of China. Over 1,000 Buddhists, scholars and representatives from 55 countries and regions attended the forum. The WBF-2018 was jointly hosted by the Buddhist Association of China and the China Religious Culture Communication Association. The aim of the forum is to carry forward the positive Buddhist cultural spirits, promote exchanges between Buddhism and other religions, and make contributions to building a community with a shared future for humanity. The World Buddhist Forum (WBF) was initiated by the Buddhist circles in the Chinese mainland, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao in 2005

37.  The 25th edition of bilateral maritime exercise "SIMBEX-18" has started between the Navies of the Republic of Singapore and India from 10th to 21st November 2018 off Andaman Sea and Bay of Bengal. The SIMBEX 2018 will be the largest edition since 1994 in terms of scale and complexity. The initial harbour phase will be held at Port Blair, the capital of Andaman and Nicobar Islands from 10 to 12 November followed by Sea Phase from 12 to 16 November in the Andaman Sea. The second harbour phase from 16 to 19 November will be held at Visakhapatnam – 'the City of Destiny'. The final sea phase would be held in the Bay of Bengal from 19 to 21 November. The 2018 edition marks the Silver Jubilee of Singapore-India Maritime Bilateral Exercise (SIMBEX). To mark the historical occasion, both navies are undertaking exercises over an extended geography. The 25th edition will witness a diverse range of exercises at sea ranging from live weapon drills including Heavy Weight Torpedo (HWT), advanced Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) exercises, integrated Surface and Anti-Air Warfare (AAW); Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) operations and Cross Deck Helicopter flying among others.

38.  Ashok Kumar Gupta, a 1981 Tamil Nadu cadre IAS officer, has been appointed as new chairperson of Competition Commission of India (CCI). His tenure as the CCI Chairman will be till October 25, 2022, i.e. when attains the age of 65 years, or until further orders, whichever is earlier. He will succeed acting chairperson Sudhir Mittal. The CCI is a Quasi-judicial statutory body , established in October 2003 under the Competition Act of 2002, that keeps a tab on unfair business practices across sectors. It is the duty of the Commission to eliminate practices having adverse effect on competition, promote and sustain competition, protect the interests of consumers and ensure freedom of trade in the markets of India.

39.  In India, the National Cancer Awareness Day (NCAD) is observed every year on 7th of November to remove all stops to lower the national cancer burden by generating awareness about early detection and avoiding leading cancer causing lifestyles. The main motto of the special day is to educate people on early detection & cure of cancer. It is estimated that there are about 2.9 million cases of cancer in the country with 1.1 million new cases being reported annually. Two-thirds of cancer cases are diagnosed at the advanced stage.

40.  The IIT Madras has recently developed a portable solar-powered cold storage device with a 500 kg capacity for storing vegetables, and fruits, among other items. The device will help farmers store their produce for sufficient time so that it does not get spoilt before it is sold, thereby preventing wastage of agricultural produce.The first unit of the device, which provides storage facility with temperature ranging between 4 to 10 degree celsius, was deployed at a farm in Madurantakam in Kancheepuram district, around 80 km from Chennai, recently. Each unit would cost between Rs 5.5 to Rs 6 lakh and storage capacity could be scaled down based on requirement. The project has been funded by Department of Science and Technology (Ministry of Science and Technology) and IIT-M. A startup called Tan90, initiated by IIT-M students, aims to commercialise the technology and take it to individual farmers with even smaller devices at affordable prices.

41.  Star Indian wrestler Bajrang Punia has recently touched a new high in his career by achieving the World number one rank in the 65kg category. He was placed atop the ranking table with 96 points in the United World Wrestling (UWW) list. The UWW is the international governing body for the sport of amateur wrestling. Its duties include overseeing wrestling at the Olympics. Bajrang has won five medals this season, including Common Wealth Games and the Asian Games gold and a silver at the World Championship in Budapest. Bajrang was also the only Indian grappler to be given a seeding at the Budapest World Championship.

42.  The new artillery guns and equipment, including K9 Vajra, M777 howitzers, have recently inducted into the Indian Army at the Deolali artillery centre in Nashik district of Maharashtra. Beside this, the third gun system inducted is the 'Composite Gun Towing Vehicle' for towing some of the existing guns in service with the country. The K9 VAJRA-T 155mm/ 52 is a tracked self-propelled artillery gun, which has its roots in the K9 Thunder, the mainstay of the South Korean Army. The Vajra offers a high rate of fire at a long range and is compatible with Indian and standard NATO ammunition. The M777 is the 155mm/ 39 Calibre Ultra Light Howitzer (ULH) that have been procured from USA under Government to Government Foreign Military Sales and will be assembled in India by BAE Systems in partnership with Mahindra Defence. The M777s can be easily transported to high altitude areas such as borders with China and Pakistan by helicopters.

43.  The new artillery guns and equipment, including K9 Vajra, M777 howitzers, have recently inducted into the Indian Army at the Deolali artillery centre in Nashik district of Maharashtra. Beside this, the third gun system inducted is the 'Composite Gun Towing Vehicle' for towing some of the existing guns in service with the country. The K9 VAJRA-T 155mm/ 52 is a tracked self-propelled artillery gun, which has its roots in the K9 Thunder, the mainstay of the South Korean Army. The Vajra offers a high rate of fire at a long range and is compatible with Indian and standard NATO ammunition. The M777 is the 155mm/ 39 Calibre Ultra Light Howitzer (ULH) that have been procured from USA under Government to Government Foreign Military Sales and will be assembled in India by BAE Systems in partnership with Mahindra Defence. The M777s can be easily transported to high altitude areas such as borders with China and Pakistan by helicopters.

44.  Arunima Sinha, the Indian mountaineer who became the world's first woman amputee to climb Mount Everest in 2013, has been recently awarded an honorary doctorate by a prestigious UK university ' University of Strathclyde' at a graduation ceremony in Glasgow for her inspirational achievements in mountaineering. The award also recognises Ms Sinha's charitable work through the Arunima Foundation, which seeks to empower women, disabled people and generally improve the health and social and economic situation for poorer communities.

45.  The Republic of Palau, an archipelago found in the western Pacific Ocean, has become the world's first nation to ban the use of sunscreens that have been deemed harmful to coral reefs and ocean life. The ban, which will come into force by 2020, has been signed into law by the Palau government. These sunscreens are made from "reef-toxic" chemicals such as oxybenzone, octinoxate and triclosan. These chemicals causes corals to bleach at lower temperatures, and it reduces their resilience to climate change. Palau is home to just 21,000 people but has a booming tourism and fishing industry. It contains approximately 340 islands, forming the western chain of the Caroline Islands in Micronesia, and has an area of 466 square km.

46.  Swati Chaturvedi, an Indian freelance journalist, has won the 2018 London Press Freedom Award for Courage for her work in exposing the "IT cell" within the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for keeping an army of angry trolls. She beat shortlisted journalists from Italy, Turkey, and Morocco to wom the award. Swati, who is famous for her investigative reports, is the author of the book title "I am a Troll: Inside the Secret World of the BJP's Digital Army". The award was presented at the Getty Images Gallery in London's Fitzrovia on November 8. The Prize for Courage is given to journalists who show courage in their work or in the defence and promotion of journalism.

47.  The US-based National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) has recently published the report titled 'Mobility and Congestion in Urban India'. In it, Bengaluru has been ranked India's most congested city followed by Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad and Pune. The report further found that Bengaluru was the second slowest city in terms of traffic speeds only behind Kolkata. The report also notes that in terms of traffic speeds, the fastest Indian cities surveyed were slower than the American cities surveyed. The researchers studied 154 Indian cities and measured trips based on the web-mapping service 'Google Maps'. They particularly studied pairs of trip instances taking place around the same time on different days. The study was conducted by a team of researchers at theUniversity of California, Berkeley and three other U.S. universities.

48.  The National Legal Services Day (NLSD) is celebrated every year on 9th of November in India to ensure reasonable fair and justice procedure for all citizens. It was first started by Supreme court of India (SCI) in the year 1995 to provide help and support to poor and weaker sections of the society. The Article 39A of Constitution provides free legal assistance to the poor and weaker sections of the society. It directs the State to ensure that the operation of the legal system promotes justice on a basis of equal opportunity and shall, in particular, provide free legal aid by suitable legislation or schemes or in any other way, to ensure that opportunities for securing justice are not denied to any citizen by reason of economic or other disabilities. The Right to free legal aid or free legal service is an essential fundamental right guaranteed by the Constitution. It forms the basis of reasonable, fair and just liberty under Article 21 of the Constitution of India, which says, "No person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure established by law".

49.  The first-ever bilateral naval exercise 'Samudra Shakti 2018' has started between Indian & Indonesian Navy at the port of Surabaya in Indonesia from November 12 to 18. The aim of the exercise is to strengthen bilateral relations, expand maritime co-operation, enhance interoperability and exchange best practices. From Indian side, INS Rana of the Eastern Fleet based at Visakhapatnam under the Eastern Naval Command is participating in the exercise.

50.  Twitter India has recently launched a new social initiative #PowerOf18, which aims to encourage youth to contribute in public debates and participate in civic engagement for the 2019 general elections. The #PowerOf18 will serve as a resource for young Indians to find more information about the elections, support social causes they are passionate about and join the public conversation. The initiative was launched by CEO Jack Dorsey and Maya Hari, Vice-President and Managing Director of Asia Pacific, Twitter during a townhall chat with the students of IIT Delhi.

51.  Stan Lee (95), the legendary comic book writer and former chief of Marvel Comics, has passed away in Los Angeles, United States. Lee created the Fantastic Four for Marvel Comics in 1961 and went on to create titles like Spider-Man and The Incredible Hulk. In collaboration with several artists—particularly Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko—he cocreated fictional characters including Spider-Man, the Hulk, Doctor Strange, the Fantastic Four, Daredevil, Black Panther, the X-Men, and—with his brother, co-writer Larry Lieber—the characters Ant-Man, Iron Man, and Thor.

52.  On November 11, Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated India's first multi-modal terminal on the Ganga river in his parliamentary constituency in Varanasi and received the country's first container cargo transported on inland waterways from Kolkata. This is the first of the four multi-modal terminals being constructed on the National Waterway-1 (River Ganga) as part of the World Bank-aided 'Jal Marg Vikas Project' of the Inland Waterways Authority of India. The total estimated cost of the project is Rs 5,369.18 crore, which will be equally shared between the Government of India and the World Bank. The aim of the Centre's Jal Marg Vikas Project is to develope the stretch of the river between Varanasi and Haldia for navigation of large vessels weighing up to 1,500 tonnes to 2,000 tonnes. Its objective is to promote inland waterways as a cheap and an environment-friendly means of transportation, especially for cargo movement. The Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI) is the project implementing agency.

53.  On November 14, ISRO's GSAT-29 telecommunications satellite was successfully launched into Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) by the second developmental flight of Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle MarkIII (GSLV MkIII-D2) from the the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) SHAR, Sriharikota. The 3,423kg GSAT-29 is a multiband, multi-beam communication satellite, intended to serve as test bed for several new and critical technologies. Its Ku-band and Ka-band payloads are configured to cater to the communication requirements of users including those from remote areas especially from Jammu & Kashmir and North-Eastern regions of India. It is designed for a mission life of 10 years. The GSLV Mk III is the 5th generation launch vehicle developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). It is designed to place a satellite of upto 4000 kg in Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO).

54.  The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) has appointed Siddharth Tiwari as the Chief Representative for Asia and the Pacific. He succeeded Eli Remolona. At BIS, he will work to strengthen the connection between BIS and the central banks in the area he oversees. He will lead efforts to enhance understanding of issues that are important to central banks and supervisors in the region, contributing significantly to the BIS's global work on central bank cooperation and financial stability issues. BIS is an international financial institution owned by central banks which fosters international monetary and financial cooperation and serves as a bank for central banks. It is based in Basel, Switzerland.

55.  Delhi Police has recently launched e-learning portal 'Nipun' to impart in-service training and provide up to date information to police officers. The purpose of the e-learning portal is to impart online training and information through specialized courses designed by experts. It will benefit the police officers investigating various cases by providing online resource and information on law, standing orders, investigation checklists, forms for case files, latest High Court and Supreme Court rulings. Many of the courses have been developed in-house while others have been made in collaboration with the University Grant Commission (UGC), FICCI, NHRC, NCPCR, and Janaki Devi Memorial College, Delhi University (DU) under the project "The Collaborative Learning and Partnership" (CLAP)

56.  On November 14, the United Nations Children's Fund — India (UNICEF-India) has appointed Asian Games gold-medalist sprinter Hima Das as the country's first ever youth ambassador as part of 2018 World Children's Day (WCD) celebration. She will work towards supporting various initiatives by UNICEF. In her role as a Youth Ambassador, Hima will work towards raising awareness about the rights and needs of children and help amplify the voices of children and young people as active participants in decision making, thus contributing to their holistic development. Hailing from Nagaon district of Assam, Das clinched a gold in Women's 4×400 metre relay event and silver in the 400 meters sprint at the 2018 Asian Games.

57.  South African president Cyril Ramaphosa will be chief guest at the 2019 Republic Day parade of India. With this, Ramaphosa would become 2nd leader from his country to attend the event. Former president Nelson Mandela was the chief guest at the 1995 parade. An anti-apatheid activist and a Mahatma Gandhi follower, Ramaphosa became the 5th president of South Africa after the resignation of Jacob Zuma in December 2017. In April 2018, he led around 5,000 people at the annual 'Gandhi Walk' event in Lenasia near Johannesburg, to promote community awareness and fitness. Hence, the move to invite Ramaphosa also coincides with Mahatma Gandhi's 150th birth anniversary. South Africa is also a key BRICS association partner for India. Generally, chief guests of the parade are heads of states of countries that are strategically important to India, or heads of neighbouring countries.

58.  India is hosting the 2018 Women's Boxing World Championships in New Delhi from November 15-24. This 10th edition of the tournament is set to be the biggest ever as more than 300 boxers from 72 countries will be taking part. This time, the 10-member Indian team, led by Mary Kom, is a mix of seasoned and young boxers. Earlier, the tournament was held in India in 2006 and remains the best for the country in terms of performance. India had topped the table with four gold, three silver and one silver and three bronze medals.

59.  The 13th East Asia Summit (EAS -2018) was held in Central Area, Singapore on November 14–15. It was an annual meeting of national leaders from the East Asian region and adjoining countries. Leaders of 18 countries of Asia Pacific region, which include 10 ASEAN countries and India, US, Russia, Australia, South Korea, China, Japan and New Zealand, took part in the summit. From India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended the meeting, during which the leaders of the grouping discussed global and regional issues, including maritime cooperation.

60.  The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has unanimously agreed to lift sanctions against Eritrea after nine years. An arms embargo, asset freeze, and travel ban were imposed in 2009 amid claims that Eritrea supported al-Shabab militants in Somalia. However, Eritrea has always denied the accusations. The resolution, drafted by the UK, was backed by the US and its allies. The UN vote comes amid a thaw in relations between Eritrea and its neighbours following years of conflict. Eritrea agreed on a peace deal with Ethiopia in June 2018 following two decades of animosity, while the leader of Eritrea and the UN-backed government in Somalia recently signed a joint cooperation agreement. The leaders of Somalia, Eritrea and Ethiopia met recently in northern Ethiopia to push for regional economic development. Eritrea gained its independence from Ethiopia in the early 1990s, and war broke out later that decade over a border dispute. It is an African nation which is bordered by Sudan in the west, Ethiopia in the south, and Djibouti in the southeast.

61.  The National Cooperative Development Corporation (NCDC) is a statutory Corporation set up to promote and provide financial assistance to cooperatives. Its headquarters is located at New Delhi. Recently, NCDC's new youth-friendly scheme 'Yuva SahakarCooperative Enterprise Support and Innovation Scheme' has been launched to attract youth to cooperative business ventures. It was launched by Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare, Radha Mohan Singh. The scheme will be linked to Rs 1000 crore 'Cooperative Start-up and Innovation Fund (CSIF)' created by the NCDC. It would have more incentives for cooperatives of North Eastern region, Aspirational Districts and cooperatives with women or SC or ST or PwD members. The funding for the project will be up to 80% of the project cost for these special categories as against 70% for others. The scheme envisages 2% less than the applicable rate of interest on term loan for the project cost up to Rs 3 crore including 2 years moratorium on payment of principal. All types of cooperatives in operation for at least one year are eligible.

62.  In a bid to ensure sustainable development of the Himalayan region, NITI Aayog has recently constituted the Himalayan State Regional Council (HSRC). The council, which will be chaired by Dr. V K Saraswat, Member of NITI Aayog, and will consist of the Chief Secretaries of the Himalayan States as well as the Secretaries of key Central Ministries, senior officers of NITI Aayog special invitees. It will review and implement identified action points based on the reports of five working groups. The Council will also act as the nodal agency for sustainable development in the Himalayan region which has 12 States, including Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh.

63.  India's first specialized hospital for elephants has opened by NGO Wildlife SOS (WSOS) in Mathura at Farah block's Churmura village. The first-of-its-kind hospital has unique facilities including wireless digital X-ray, laser treatment, dental X-ray, thermal imaging, ultrasonography, hydrotherapy and quarantine facilities. The hospital is strategically located near elephant conservation and care centre. It is designed to treat injured, sickor geriatric elephants and is equipped with a medical hoist for lifting elephants, as also an elephant restraining device with a dedicated indoor treatment enclosure for long duration medical procedures.

64.  Alyque Padamsee (90), the veteran ad film maker and theatre personality, has passed away in Mumbai, Maharashtra on November 17, 2018. He was widely called the Brand Father of Indian advertising. During his active years in ad industry, he remained the brain behind several iconic and memorable Indian ad campaigns such as Lalitaji for Surf, Cherry Charlie for Cherry Blossom Shoe Polish, the MRF Muscle Man, the Liril girl in the waterfall, Hamara Bajaj and the TV detective Karamchand. He also created many public service campaigns on topics, including eve-teasing, AIDS and sexual molestation. He served as a social activist for the Citizens for Justice and Peace Committee, the Citizens Action Group, and was also on the advisory council of IIT Bombay. He was also a part of the Prime Minister's AIDS Task Force. Mr Padamsee was also best known for his role as Muhammad Ali Jinnah in 1982 historcial drama "Gandhi". For his contributions to the creative field, he was honored with Padmashri in 2000 and was named Advertising Man of the Century by The Advertising Club in Mumbai.

65.  The Government of India (GoI) has set up a tribunal for adjudicating whether or not there is sufficient cause for declaring the two Tripura-based militant outfits – National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT) and All Tripura Tiger Force (ATTF) – as unlawful associations under the law. The decision has been taken by the Home Ministry exercising the powers conferred under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act . The tribunal will be headed by Delhi High Court Judge Justice Suresh Kait. The rebel outfits, formed in 1990 with the objective of "expulsion of all foreigners who entered the state after 1956", were first banned in 1997 following riots involving tribals and non-tribals in Tripura's Khowai subdivision, in which the outfits intervened on behalf of tribals. Tripura shares an 856-km boundary with Bangladesh.

66.  The National Education Day (NED) is celebrated every year in India on 11th of November to commemorate the birth anniversary of great freedom fighter, educationist & social reformer Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. He was also the independent India's first education minister (served from 1947 to 1958). In 1912, he started a weekly journal in Urdu called Al-Hilal to increase the revolutionary recruits. For his contribution – both as an educationist as a freedom fighter – he was awarded the Bharat Ratna in 1992. He is also responsible in establishing most of the major cultural and literary academies including the Sangeet Natak Academy, Lalit Kala Academy, Sahitya Academy as well as the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR). The first IIT, IISc, School of Planning and Architecture and the University Grants Commission were established under his tenure. The day also observes to strengthen India's educational institutions and to raising the quality of education.

67.  The Government of India (GoI) has appointed UIDAI CEO & GSTN Chairman Ajay Bhushan Pandey as new Secretary of Revenue in place of Hasmukh Adhia, who is set to superannuate on November 30. Pandey, who is 1984 batch Maharashtra-cadre IAS officer will continue to hold additional charge of CEO of UIDAI and also Chairman of GST Network. Interestingly, the government also appointed Sanjay Kumar Mishra, a 1984 batch IRS Officer, as Director of Enforcement Directorate (ED) for two years. Similarly, Gujarat cadre IAS Girish Chandra Murmu will be new Secretary of Expenditure and will take over from AN Jha who will superannuate in January 2019.

68.  After Maharashtra and Gujarat, Punjab has become the India's third state to legally ban hookah bars or lounges. The ban was announced through a law after President Ram Nath Kovind gave assent to the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2018 recently. The purpose of bringing the law is to check the use of tobacco in various forms and prevent diseases caused by the use of the tobacco products. As per available data, an hour's average of hookah includes 20- 200 puffs, delivering 50 litres of smoke contain, hazardous and carcinogenic chemicals. The smoking of hookah increases health risks includes exposure to toxic chemicals that are not filtered out by the water, and also the risk of infectious disease like tuberculosis resulting from sharing a hookah.

69.  The 10th edition of joint military exercise between Indian and Russia "INDRA 2018" on combating insurgency has started at Babina Field Firing Ranges in Babina Military Station, Jhansi (Uttar Pradesh) from 18th November 2018. The purpose of the exercise is to practice joint planning and conduct to enhance interoperability of the two Armies in the peace keeping/ enforcement environment under the aegis of the United Nations (UN). It focuses upon training on enhancing team building, special tactical level operations such as Cordon and Search, house intervention, handling and neutralisation of Improvised Explosive Devices and integrated employment of force multipliers. The primary focus of the tactical field exercise is to share best practices amongst the militaries and hone existing skills of the troops in the backdrop of interoperability between the two Armies in the peace keeping/ enforcement environment.

70.  In Haryana, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has recently laid foundation of India's first Sri Vishwakarma Skill Development University at village Dudhola in Palwal district via remote control . The University would impart skill training to the youth and encourage them to be self employed. It's campus would be developed over 82.7 acres at a sum of over Rs 1,000 crore. PM Modi also inaugurated the Western Peripheral Expressway (WPE), which is popularly known as Kundali-Manesar-Palwal (KMP) expressway. The six-lane KMP expressway is expected to reduce traffic congestion and pollution in Delhi. It will act as a ring road around Delhi and also could reduce heavy vehicle traffic by diverting up to 50,000 commercial vehicles away from Delhi. KMP will connect National Highway-1 (towards Panipat), near Kundli, with National Highway -10 (Rohtak Road, near Bahadurgarh), NH-8 (Jaipur expressway at Manesar), and NH-2 (Delhi-Agra highway near Palwal).

71.  Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), the New Delhi (India)-based independent research and advocacy think tank, has won the prestigious 2018 Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development. The CSE has been awarded for its pioneering pioneering work over almost four decades on various burning issues from air and water pollution, food safety, waste water management, climate change and so on. The award is conferred by Indira Gandhi Trust each year on the late Prime Minister's birth anniversary. The international jury for the awards was headed by former President Pranab Mukerjee. The CSE was established in 1980 under leadership of the late Anil Agarwal and is presently headed by Sunita Narain.

72.  Jalaj Srivastava, a 1984 batch Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer, has been appointed the new chairman of the Inland Waterways Authority of India (IWAI). Prior to this post, he was working as Additional Secretary in Ministry of Agriculture. He is known for launching the "Shakti Cab" project and "URJA" project for women when he was with the Delhi government as chairman of New Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) and Principal Secretary in Department of VAT. He is also considered as the man behind the start of "Rahagiri" event that takes place every Sunday in the national capital to promote culture and sports. Jalaj is also the writer of a crime thriller novel titled 'The Perfect Suicide'. The IWAI comes under the Union Ministry of Shipping, Road Transport and Highways, currently headed by Nitin Gadkari.

73.  Brigadier (retd) Kuldip Singh Chandpuri (78), who was known for his heroic leadership in the famous Battle of Longewala during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, has passed away in Mohali, Punjab on November 17, 2018. He was decorated with the Maha Vir Chakra (MVC) for the heroic stand-off that forced the enemy to retreat. The Battle of Longewala (1971) was one of the first major engagements in the western sector during the Indo-Pak war of 1971, fought between assaulting Pakistani forces and Indian defenders at the Indian border post of Longewala in the Thar desert of Rajasthan. The 1997 Bollywood war film 'Border' was based on the real life events that happened at the Battle of Longewala, with his role played by Sunny Deol.

74.  The 14th edition of International theatre festival for children "Jashne Bachpan 2018" has started in New Delhi from November 17. It is being organised by National School of Drama's (NSD) Theatre in Education (TIE) Company, which is also known as Sanskar Rang Toli. The 9-day theatre festival for children will see 21 productions from India and three foreign groups including Sri Lanka (non-verbal), Switzerland (English) and Indonesia (Javanese). The plays will be performed in vernacular languages like Bengali, Marathi, Assamese, and Malayalam besides non-verbal, English, Hindi and other foreign languages. The idea behind this initiative is to bring those children to the mainstream and inculcate enthusiasm for art and culture along with entertainment at a global platform like Jashne bachpan.

75.  Kim Jong Yang, a South Korean police officer, has been elected the new President of Interpol for a two-year term. He succeeded Meng Hongwei of China. The decision was taken at the 87th General Assembly of the Agency in Dubai, UAE. The International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) is the international organization that facilitates international police cooperation. Its' headquarters is located at Lyo, France. Its work focuses primarily on public safety and battling transnational crimes against humanity, child pornography, cybercrime, drug trafficking, environmental crime, genocide, etc.

76.  The Union Ministry of Environment has recently approved a project led by scientists at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur to induce artificial rain via cloud seeding to clear smog in Delhi. The Cloud seeding project will have an aircraft fly into the clouds and inject silver iodide, which will lead to the formation of ice crystals that will make the clouds denser, cause them to condense into rain and settle atmospheric dust enough to clear the sky. The researchers at IIT-Kanpur will use an aircraft of the National Remote Sensing Agency (NRSA), an ISRO-affiliated body for the exercise. The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) will provide forecasts on the likelihood of conducive clouds. The cloud seeding is not new to India — Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra have experimented with it in limited trials through the decades to address droughts. Though, this is the first time it will be tried during the winters to battle pollution.

77.  Professor Shyama Prasad Ganguly from India has been awarded the Mexican Order of the Aztec Eagle, the highest civilian honour given to a foreigner by Mexico. He was decorated with the striking gold-yellow insignia by Mexican Ambassador Melba Pria at a ceremony in the India International Center (IIC) on November 19. The award was in recognition of his "outstanding work in the study and dissemination of the Spanish language and Mexican culture". Ganguly is a well-known Hispanist who has headed the Centre for Spanish and Latin American Studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University five times. He has authored, edited and translated over 25 books in an academic career spanning 40 years.

78.  The Universal Children's Day (UCD) is observed every year on 20th of November across the world to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, and improving children's welfare. The 2018 theme is 'Children are taking over and turning the world blue'. The day was established in 1954, offers each of us an inspirational entrypoint to advocate, promote and celebrate children's rights, translating into dialogues and actions that will build a better world for Children.

79.  Fahmida Riaz (73), the noted India-born Pakistani poet and human rights activist, has passed away in Lahore on November 22. She worked with Radio Pakistan and BBC Urdu service (Radio) Riaz fled Pakistan during former military dictator Gen Zia-ul-Haq's rule and lived in self exile in India for 7 years. The poems from her collection 'Apna Jurm Sabit Hae' reflect her homeland's experience under the dictatorship of General Zia-ul-Haq. She was born into a literary family of Meerut in Uttar Pradesh and settled in Hyderabad in Sindh Province. She always raised her voice for women rights and democracy in Pakistan.

80.  The Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB) of India and its enforcement officer RS Sharath has won the Asia Environment Enforcement Awards under the organization and individual categories respectively for their outstanding contributions in combating the trans-boundary environmental crimes. This is the 2nd time in a row the awards are being given by UN Environment to India. The WCCB is a statutory multi-disciplinary body established by the Government of India (GoI) under the Environment Ministry to combat organized wildlife crime in the country. The body is mandated to collect and collate intelligence related to organized wildlife crime activities and to disseminate it to the state and other enforcement agencies for immediate action and establish a centralized wildlife crime data bank among many others. The Bureau has its headquarter in New Delhi.

81.   To mark the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev in November 2019, the Union Cabinet has recently approved the building and development of the Kartarpur Corridor from Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur district of Punjab to the international border with Pakistan. The corridor will facilitate pilgrims from India who visit Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, Kartarpur, on the banks of the Ravi River in Pakistan every year, where Shri Guru Nanak Devji spent 18 years. The Kartarpur corridor will be implemented as an integrated development project with Government of India funding, to provide smooth and easy passage, with all the modern amenities. The corridor was proposed by the then PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 1999. If connected on the both sides, this could also provide a major tourism boost as more pilgrims would be able to visit the holy shrine throughout the year.

82.   Emmy-nominated British actress Millie Bobby Brown (14) has been named the youngest-ever UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. The appointment was marked on 2018 World Children's Day (WCD) at United Nations Headquarters and the Empire State Building in New York on 20th November. She has been tasked by the UN to help raise awareness around children's rights and issues including poverty, bullying, education and violence. The World Children's Day (WCD) is a global day of action 'for children, by children' to raise awareness and funds for the millions of children that are unschooled, unprotected and uprooted.

83.   The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has developed a new technology to assess the rise of water level in rivers and reservoirs by rain. The technology, called 'Impact Based Forecasting Approach', which shows pre-event scenario, can help state governments to minutely monitor the impact of rain and take real-time decisions.

84.   Recently, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik released the Odisha Men's Hockey World Cup-2018 anthem in the presence of music director A R Rahman here who has composed the music for it. The lyrics for the Hockey World Cup anthem 'Jai Hind, Jai India' have been penned by well known lyricist Gulzar. The 14th edition of the tournament will be held at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar from 28 November to 16 December, 2018. Apart from this, Turtle Olly was declared the official mascot of 2018 tournament at the Puri sea beach in Odisha. Alongside the promotion of the event, the mascot aims to raise awareness about the conservation of the Olive Ridley turtle, which is said to be on the verge of extinction in the state of Odisiha.

85.   Ace Indian pugilist MC Mary Kom from Manipur has won the historic sixth gold medal at the 2018 Women's World Boxing Championship in New Delhi. In the final, she defeated Hanna Okhota of Ukraine Hanna Okhota in the 48kg category at KD Jadav Indoor Stadium. Mary Kom is now the most successful boxer in the history of the championship and won the gold exactly 16 years after she had won it for the first time in 2002. She had won gold in 2002, 2005, 2006, 2008 and 2010 editions of the Championship.

86.   As per 6th edition of India Skills Report 2019, Andhra Pradesh has topped the list of states with the highest employability followed by Rajasthan and Haryana. The report stated that around 70% of the youth face problem due to lack of professional guidance in finding desirable jobs that worth their skills. The report also highlights the fact that from FMCG to startups, every industry offers paid or unpaid internship programmes to youth. According to the report, a small percentage of students in all states have done at least one internship in the past 12 months. The employability levels of B.Tech/B.E have increased across all the sectors at 63.11% as against last year's 42.08%. However, the employability levels of MBA and polytechnic stand low between 47.18% and 45.90%. The survey was conducted jointly by Wheebox, PeopleStrong, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), and supported and backed by All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Association of Indian Universities (AIU).

87.   The North Sentinel Island is one of the Andaman Islands, which includes South Sentinel Island, in the Bay of Bengal. It is home to the Sentinelese who, often violently, reject any contact with the outside world, and are among the last uncontacted peoples to remain virtually untouched by modern civilisation. Recently, it is in news because the American national 'John Allen Chau' allegedly killed by people belonging to the protected Sentinelese tribe in the North Sentinel Island. It must be noted that North Sentinel Island and its buffer zone is strictly restricted under the Andaman and Nicobar Islands (Protection of Aboriginal Tribes) Regulation, 1956 under Indian Forest Act, 1927. In it, it is declared that the traditional areas occupied by the tribes as reserves, and prohibited entry of all persons except those with authorisation. Photographing or filming the tribe members is also an offence. The rules were amended later to enhance penalties. But restricted area permits were relaxed for some islands recently.

88.   The Australian women's national cricket team has lifted the ICC Women's World Twenty-20 title for the fourth time. In the title clash played at Antigua in West Indies, the Aussies recorded an emphatic 8-wicket win over England. Alyssa Jean Healy of Australia was the leading run-scorer in the competition, with 225 runs, and was named the player of the tournament.

89.   The Dudhwa Tiger Reserve (DTR) and Sashastra Sima Bal (SSB) have joined hands to provide full proof security to Dudhwa forests and its rich wildlife. As per agreement, all security agencies including SSB on the border, central and local intelligence officers, customs and excise officials, Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF) and the Dudhwa field staff will strengthen the patrolling in and around Dudhwa to check forest and wildlife crimes. Hence, the joint long route patrolling comprising SSB, STPF and DTR field staff would be held at regular intervals. The DTR is located in the Terai of Uttar Pradesh and covers an area of 490.3 km2, with a buffer zone of 190 km2 (73 sq mi). It is home for tigers, leopards, Asiatic black bears, sloth bears, Swamp deer, rhinoceros, elephants, cheetal, hog deer, barking deer, sambar, wild boar and hispid hare.

90.   The Regional Integrated Multi-Hazard Early Warning System for Africa and Asia (RIMES) has termed 'Titli', the severe cyclonic storm that devastated Odisha in October 2018, as 'rarest cyclone'. In its latest report, RIMES stated that more than 200 years of cyclone track history in the Odisha coast reveals that the Titli cyclone is the rarest of rare due to the recurvature after its landfall. Titli retained its destructive potential after landfall and made a recurvature away from coastal areas for more than two days. According to RIMES, the Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA) faced challenges in anticipating and managing Titli's impact due to lack of impact-based actionable early warning information and prior experience not only in India but also elsewhere. The RIMES has recommended that a detailed risk assessment has to be carried out for Odisha to understand the risks in the light of the Titli devastation. Earlier, India Meteorological Department had called the formation of Titli as a 'rarest of rare' occurrence. Thailand-based RIMES is a 45-nation international organisation on disaster warning.

91.   The National Law Day (NLD) is celebrated in India on 26th of November every year to commemorate the adoption of Constitution of India. The day is also known as Samvidhan Divas or Constitution Day. On this day in 1949, the constitution was adopted by the Constituent Assembly of India which came into force on 26th January 1950, marking the beginning of a new era in the history of India. On 19th November 2015, the Government of India (GoI) in a gazette notification declared November 26th as the Constitution Day. The year of 2015 was the 125th birth anniversary of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, who had chaired the drafting committee of the Constituent Assembly and played a pivotal role in the drafting of the constitution. The day was chosen to spread the importance of the constitution and to spread thoughts and ideas of Dr. Ambedkar.

92.   The Croatia Davis Cup team has won the 107th edition of the Davis Cup tennis tournament 2018. In the final at Lille's Stade Pierre Mauroy, Marin Cilic clinched the title by defeating France's Lucas Pouille 7-6(3) 6-3 6-3 to give his side a decisive 3-1 lead. This is Croatia's second title. Their maiden victory happened in 2005 when they overcame Slovakia.

93.   The United Nations has officially selected Uttar Pradesh's Noida and Greater Noida to participate in its Global Sustainable Cities 2025 initiative. The twin-cities in Gautam Buddh Nagar district have been selected in the "University City" category ahead of Mumbai and Bengaluru as the only invitee from India. Overall 25 cities across the world have been selected in five categories by the UN Global Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) cities initiative. The SDGs, otherwise known as the Global Goals, are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity.

94.   The West Bengal Assembly has recently passed the West Bengal Green University (Amendment) Bill 2018 to rename the West Bengal Green University as Rani Rashmoni Green University. The decision to rename the university was taken to commemorate the 225th birth anniversary of Lokmata Rani Rashmoni. Rani Rashmoni had played an important role in the spread of education in the state. She was the founder of the Dakshineswar Kali Temple, Kolkata. Her other construction works include the construction of a road from Subarnarekha River to Puri for the pilgrims, Babughat (also known as Babu Rajchandra Das Ghat), Ahiritola Ghat and Nimtola Ghat for the everyday bathers at the Ganges. She also offered considerable charity to the Imperial Library (now the National Library of India), the Hindu College (now Presidency University).

95.   The Kerch Strait is a strait that connects the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. Its' also a narrow sea passage that divides Crimea from mainland Russia. The strait is spanned by the recently completed 11.8 mile Kerch Bridge, connecting Crimea to Russia. Recently, it is in news because Russia's coast guard opened fire on & seized three Ukrainian ships after a tense standoff in the Black Sea near the Crimean Peninsula. Russia blamed Ukraine for provoking the incident, which sharply escalated tensions that have been growing between the two countries since Moscow annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014. Now, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko implement martial law for 30 days over the incident. The imposition of martial law permits the Ukrainian government to impose a range of drastic measures, if deemed necessary, including placing a ban public gatherings, restricting media freedoms, limiting the movement of Ukrainian nationals as well as foreign nationals and suspending elections. Hence, the confrontation at sea has raised fears of a wider military escalation and the UN Security Council (UNSC) hold an emergency session to consider a response.

96.   The International Gita Festival 2018 will be held at Kurukshetra in Haryana from December 7-23 to commemorate the birth of 'Srimad Bhagwat Gita', the sacred scripture containing invaluable advice of Lord Krishna that he proffered to Arjuna, the third Pandava in the battlefield of Kurukshetra on the first day of the famous 18-day battle in the Mahabharata. In the fest, Mauritius will be the partner country and Gujarat the partner state. Approx 200 famous painters from across the country would reach Kurukshetra to draw paintings on the walls of Kurukshetra on the theme of the Mahabharata under the 'paint-the-wall' competition. Artists from India as well from Mauritius, Indonesia, Iran, Turkmenistan and Russia will perform during the annual festival.Apart from this, the Gita festival will also be organised in Mauritius on February 2019.

97.   In Kenya, the first-ever Sustainable Blue Economy Conference 2018 was held in Nairobi from November 26 to 28 with theme 'The Blue Economy and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development'. The global conference was organized by Kenya, with Canada and Japan as co-hosts. Over 4,000 participants from around the world participated in it. From India, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari addressed the conference. In it, Gadkari said India has a strategic location in the Indian Ocean region, and on this basis, it endorses the growth of the Blue Economy in a sustainable, inclusive and people centred manner through the framework of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA). The Blue Economy refers to sustainable use of ocean resources for growth, jobs and improved living standards, while preserving the ecosystem. It encompasses areas like maritime transport, fisheries, renewable energy, waste management and tourism.

98.   The Indian Organ Donation Day (IODD) is observed every year on 27th of November to motivate normal human beings to pledge to donate organs after death, and to spread awareness about the importance of organ donation. Organ Donation is donating a donor's organs like heart, liver, kidneys, intestines, lungs, and pancreas, after the donor dies, for the purpose of transplanting them into another person who is in need of an organ. In 2018, the 9th IODD was organised by the National Organ and Tissue Transplant Organization (NOTTO) in Delhi.

99.   On 27th of November, Tamil Nadu has been adjudged the Best State in Organ Donation at the 9th Indian Organ Donation Day (IODD-2018) in New Delhi by the Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare. It's fourth time in a row, the state has received the best-performing state award for organ donation. Tamil Nadu is also the first State in India to have initiated mandatory certification of brain stem death, streamlining organ distribution and setting up green corridors. Apart from this, the State of Maharashtra received an award for being the best State for promoting awareness on organ donations. Dr Subramania Iyer K, AIMS, Kochi was felicitated for conducting first hand transplant in the country and Dr Shailesh Puntambekar, Pune, received the award for conducting 1st Uterine Transplant in India.

100.   Ukrainian film 'Donbass', directed by Sergei Loznitsa, has won the coveted Golden Peacock Award at the 49th International Film Festival of India (IFFI-2018) in Goa on November 28. The award carries a cash prize of Rs 40 lakhs, a trophy and a citation. Donbass tells the story of a hybrid war taking place in a region of Eastern Ukraine, involving an open armed conflict alongside killings and robberies perpetrated on a mass scale by separatist gangs. In Donbass, war is called peace and propaganda is uttered as truth. A journey through Donbass unfolds as a series of curious adventures. This is not just a tale of one region or a political system; it is about a world lost in post-truth and fake identities. Donbass is the official submission of Ukraine for the 'Best Foreign Language Film' category at the 91st Academy Awards in 2019.

101.   The 13th edition of G20 summit 2018 will be held at Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina on November 30 under the theme 'Building Consensus for Fair and Sustainable Development'. The annual meeting is being attended by leaders of the top 20 economies of the world and will cover the entire gamut of economic issues, including the agricultural sector reform, the challenges climate change poses and health-care issues faced by the world. From India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to highlight problems of oil price volatility which has a direct impact on the Indian economy in the G 20 platform. Digital revolution and skill India are also among the issues to be discussed during the summit.

102.   On November 29, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has successfully launched its earth observation satellite ' Hyper Spectral Imaging Satellite (HysIS) into orbit from Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) at Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh. Beside HysIS, The rocket 'PSLV-C43' successfully injected 30 small satellites of 8 nations into their designated orbits. With this launch, India will have an eye in the sky to capture the images of the earth surface in high definition. The satellite HysIS can send pictures and data in multiple frequencies with high resolution. Its data will be useful in many fields including agriculture, forestry, soil survey, geology, coastal zone studies, inland water studies, environmental monitoring and pollution detection from industries. The primary mission of the HysIS, whose mission life is five years, is to study the earth's surface in visible, near infrared and shortwave infrared regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. In simple words, HysIS is the India's first hyperspectral imaging satellite for advanced Earth observation and ISRO's first full-scale working satellite with this capability.