Weekly Current Affairs

Weekly Current Affairs


Click For PDF

5th Bi-monthly Monetary Policy - In its 5th Bi-monthly Monetary Policy Committee meeting, the Reserve Bank of India has decided to keep the policy repo rate unchanged to 5.15%. Key Rates are –
Repo Rate – 5.15% (Unchanged)
Reverse Repo Rate – 4.9% (Unchanged)
Cash Reserve Rate – 4% (Unchanged)
Statutory Liquidity Ratio – 18.5% (Unchanged)
Bank Rate – 5.4% (Unchanged)
Marginal Standing Facility – 5.4% (Unchanged)
GDP (2019-20) Forecast – 5%
Prithvirajsing Roopun - The National Assembly of Republic of Mauritius has unanimously elected Prithvirajsing Roopun, as new President of the island nation, a largely ceremonial post.
Masatsugu Asakawa - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) board has unanimously elected Masatsugu Asakawa as its new president. He will assume office as ADB’s 10th President on January 17, 2020. He will succeed Takehiko Nakao.
Sundar Pichai - Sundar Pichai promoted as Alphabet Inc. CEO after Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin have announced that they are stepping down from the leadership role of the parent company Alphabet. Alphabet and Google no longer need two CEOs and a President and Sundar Pichai will be the CEO of both Google and Alphabet.
Sanna Marin - Finland’s Social Democrats elected 34-year-old Sanna Marin to the post of the prime minister, making her the youngest head of government in the country’s history.
Roger Federer - Tennis legend Roger Federer will become the first living person in Switzerland to have a coin minted in his honour.
Girish Chandra Chaturvedi - The National Stock Exchange of India Ltd (NSE) has appointed Girish Chandra Chaturvedi as its new chairman.
Miss Universe 2019 - Miss South Africa Zozibini Tunzi was crowned Miss Universe 2019 in Atlanta, US.
Arnab Goswami - The News Broadcasters Federation (NBF), the country’s largest association of over 78 news channels, has elected editor-in-chief of Republic TV Arnab Goswami as the President of its governing board.
C. Sugandh Rajaram - C. Sugandh Rajaram has been appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to the Republic of Ghana.
Suniel Shetty - Actor Suniel Shetty has been selected as the brand ambassador of National Anti-Doping Agency NADA.
Sunil Chhetri - Indian men’s football team captain Sunil Chhetri has signed a 3-year deal with PUMA. He was also conferred with the Arjuna award in 2011 and Padma Shri in 2019.
Salman Khan - PepsiCo has appointed actor Salman Khan as the new brand ambassador of its flagship Pepsi brand of carbonated beverage in India.
ET Lifetime Achievement Award - Arun Jaitley former Finance Minister of India was bestowed with the Economic Times (ET) Lifetime Achievement Award for Public Service 2019.
PETA Person of the Year - ‘Joker’ fame Joaquin Rafael Phoenix, American actor from California, United States (US) has been bestowed with the PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) ‘Person of the Year’ Award 2019.
Lionel Messi - Barcelona forward Lionel Messi has won the Ballond’Or award for the world’s best player for a record 6th time.
Prithvi-II Missile Tested - India successfully test-fired its indigenously developed surface-to-surface nuclear-capable Prithvi-II missile off Odisha coast. The Strategic Forces Command of the Indian Army conducted the user trial of the 350 km range missile from a mobile launcher from launch complex-3 of the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur.
Bhopal Gas Tragedy - The 35th anniversary of Bhopal Gas Tragedy is being observed across the country. It is one of the world’s worst industrial disaster that claimed thousands of lives on the night of December 2, 1984. The disaster took place in a pesticide production plant, named the Union Carbide India Limited (UCIL) when deadly methyl isocyanate gas leaked in night of December 2 and 3, 1984.
Eat Right Station - The Mumbai Central station of Railways was conferred with the ‘Eat Right Station’ certification with four stars rating by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), as a part of ‘Eat Right India’ movement launched last year. The Mumbai Central Railway Station is the country’s first “Eat Right Station.”
HAND-IN-HAND 2019- The 8th India-China joint training exercise ‘HAND-IN-HAND 2019’ with the theme counter-terrorism under United Nations mandate is scheduled to be conducted at Umroi, Meghalaya from 07 to 20 December 2019.
PSLV-C48 - The ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation) will launch its earth observation satellite, RISAT-2BR1 on PSLV-C48 from the First Launch Pad (FLP) of Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. RISAT-2BR1, a Radar imaging earth observation satellite weighing about 628 kg, will be placed into an orbit of 576 km. PSLV-C48, which is the 50th mission of PSLV, will also carry 9 customer satellites of Israel, Italy, Japan and USA as co-passengers.
Human Development Index - India has been ranked 129th among 189 countries in the Human Development Index 2019 released by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). India was ranked 130th last year in the index. Norway, Switzerland, Ireland occupied the top three positions in the index. India’s HDI value increased from 0.431 to 0.647, which places it above the average for countries in the medium human development group (0.634). The Human Development Index measures average achievement of the countries in 3 basic dimensions of human development i.e. life expectancyeducation and per capita income.
COP25 climate summit - India, for the first time, ranks among the top 10 in this year’s Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) at the COP25 climate summit in the Spanish capital Madrid. The current levels of per capita emissions and energy use in India ranked 9th in the high category showing that emissions are still comparatively low.
South Asian Games - The 13th South Asian Games concluded in Nepal. India finished on top with 312 medals comprising 174 gold, 93 silver and 45 bronze. Host Nepal remained second and Sri Lanka got third place. During the event athletes from India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Maldives competed for 1119 medals.
3rd Launch Pad of ISRO - Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has begun preparatory works for setting up a 3rd rocket launch pad in the small coastal hamlet of Kulashekhrapattinam in the Thuthukudi district of Tamil Nadu. At present, the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has two launch pads at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.
Time magazine’s Person of the Year - Sweden’s Greta Thunberg has been named as Time magazine’s Person of the Year for 2019. Greta Thunberg is the Swedish schoolgirl who inspired a global movement to fight climate change and became popular with the “#FridaysForFuture“. She is the youngest person to be chosen by the magazine in a tradition that started in 1927.
World’s 100 Most Powerful Women - Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has been ranked 34th by Forbes in ‘The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women’. HCL Corporation CEO and Executive Director Roshni Nadar Malhotra (Rank - 54) and Biocon Founder Kiran Mazumdar Shaw (Rank - 65) are two other Indians who also featured in the above list. The Forbes 2019 list of ‘The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women’ has been topped by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, followed by President of the European Central Bank Christine Lagarde in the 2nd spot.
International Seminar on Climate Smart Farming Systems - The ‘International Seminar on Climate Smart Farming Systems’ for BIMSTEC countries began in New Delhi. The BIMSTEC member states ‘Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Nepal and Bhutan are among the countries dependent on the Bay of Bengal.
ADB Lowered GDP Growth - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has lowered its forecast for India’s economic growth in fiscal year 2019-20 to 5.1%.ADB has stated that the consumption was affected by slow job growth and rural distress was aggravated by poor harvest.
National Tribal Dance Festival - A National Tribal Dance Festival will be held in Chhattisgarh’s capital Raipur from December 27 to 29. 23 states and guest artists from six countries including Sri Lanka, Belarus, Uganda and Bangladesh will participate in the three-day programme.
United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement - The representatives from the United States, Mexico and Canada inked a revamped version of their regional trade pact after months of negotiations. The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) will now go to the countries’ legislatures for final approval.
A.P. Disha Bill - The Andhra Pradesh Cabinet approves the A.P. Disha Bill, 2019 (A.P. Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2019) paving the way for awarding the death penalty for the offences of rape and gang-rape and expediting the verdict in trials of such cases to 21 days.
Shilpa Shetty App - Bollywood actor Shilpa Shetty’s fitness app “Shilpa Shetty App” has been awarded Google Play’s Best Apps of 2019. The app was awarded in the category of ‘Personal Growth’.
INDRA - Exercise INDRA 2019 a joint, tri-services exercise between India and Russia will be conducted in India from 10-19 December 2019 simultaneously at Babina (near Jhansi), Pune, and Goa.
NATO Summit - The United Kingdom (UK) hosted two days organised 2019 NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) Summit in London. The year 2019 marks the 70th anniversary of the summit. It was attended by NATO leaders and chaired by NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.
Licensing of Small Finance Banks - The Reserve Bank of India released guidelines for ‘on tap’ Licensing of Small Finance Banks in the Private Sector. Now payments banks willing to convert themselves into small finance banks (SFBs) can apply for such a licence only after 5 years of operations. The minimum capital for setting up an SFB has been mandated at Rs 200 crores.
Foreign Exchange Reserves - The country’s foreign exchange reserves crossed the $450-billion mark for the first time ever on the back of strong inflows which enabled the central bank to buy dollars from the market, thus checking any sharp appreciation of the rupee.
24×7 Facility for NEFT - The Reserve Bank of India announced round-the-clock transactions will be allowed 24×7 facility under the National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT) system on all days including weekends and holidays from December 16.
Mahaparinirvan Diwas - The nation is paying homage to Bharat Ratna Dr BR Ambedkar on his 64th Mahaparinirvan Diwas (death anniversary) on 6 December.
National Clean Air Programme - The Central Government launched the National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) as a long-term, time-bound, national-level strategy to tackle the air pollution problem across the country in a comprehensive manner. The government is targeting to achieve 20 per cent to 30 per cent reduction in Particulate Matter PM10 and PM2.5 concentrations by 2024 keeping 2017 as the base year for the comparison of concentration.
International Mountain Day - International Mountain Day is held every year on 11 December globally. The theme for 2019 IMD is “Mountains Matter for Youth”.
Electric Commercial Aircraft - The world’s first fully-electric commercial aircraft took its inaugural test flight, taking off from the Canadian city of Vancouver and flying for 15 minutes.
Marrakech Film Festival - Indian actress Priyanka Chopra was honoured at the Marrakech Film Festival held at the famous Jemaa el Fna square.
World Habitat Award - Odisha won the bronze in ‘World Habitat Award’ for Jaga Mission also called Odisha Liveable Habitat Mission (OLHM), a slum land titling project executed for the benefit of millions of urban-poor people living in slums.
UNESCO MGIEP - Dell Technologies announced a new partnership with UNESCO MGIEP (Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace) to enable school teachers to adopt technology in classrooms by using ICT tools. The information and communication technology (ICT) tools have been developed by Dell Aarambh and FramerSpace platform.
Mi Credit - Xiaomi has formally launched its lending platform “Mi Credit” in India for Android phones. According to platform “Mi Credit” individuals can avail up to Rs 1 lakh loan.
NAVARMS-19 - The 4th edition of International Seminar cum Exhibition on Naval Weapon Systems ‘NAVARMS-19’ begins in Institute for Defence Studies and Analysis, Development Enclave, New Delhi. The theme of the Exhibition is “Make in India – Fight Category: Opportunities and Imperatives”.
BioAsia2020- Switzerland will be the country partner at the 17th edition of BioAsia2020 scheduled to be held from February 17-19, 2020 with the theme “Today For Tomorrow” in Hyderabad, Telangana.
Universal Health Coverage Day - International Universal Health Coverage Day (UHC Day) is celebrated globally on 12 December. International Universal Health Coverage Day aims to raise awareness of the need for strong and resilient health systems and universal health coverage with multi-stakeholder partners. The theme for the 2019 UHC Day is “Keep the promise”
Registration Tracking Management System - The Election Commission of India will implement the political parties Registration Tracking Management System (RTMS). The Commission said, the applicant who is applying for party registration from 1st January 2020 onwards will be able to track the progress of his or her application and will get status through SMS and email.
ADB Loan to India - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has agreed to advance a loan of US $206 million to develop water supply and sewerage infrastructure in Tiruchi and other cities in Tamil Nadu.
Walmart India and HDFC Launched Credit Card - Walmart India, in partnership with HDFC Bank, launched a co-branded credit card exclusively for members of its Best Price Modern Wholesale “B2B Cash & Carry” stores, offering “free credit up to 50 days.
Navy Day - Navy Day is being celebrated in India on 4th December. The day is celebrated in honour of the maritime force’s role during the war with Pakistan in 1971 when Indian warships attacked Karachi port and successfully hurt Pakistani operations in the western coast.
International Volunteer Day - The International Volunteer Day (IVD) is observed across the world on 5 December every year. This year theme is ” Volunteer for an inclusive future”.
World Soil Day - World Soil Day is celebrated annually on the 5th of December at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) headquarters in Rome, Italy.
Vaccine for Rotavirus - Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu launched the new Rotavirus vaccine: ROTAVAC-5D designed and developed by Bharat Biotech in New Delhi. India is firmly committed to ending morbidity and mortality in children caused due to diarrhoea by 2022.
National Maritime Heritage Museum - Government of India (GoI) & Portugal has decided to cooperate in the setting up of an India’s 1st National Maritime Heritage Museum at the ancient Indian site of Lothal in Gujarat with the aim to boost the underwater or marine archaeology.
NIIF Master Fund - The National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) of India and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) have agreed for CPPIB to invest up to $600 million through the NIIF Master Fund.
Transcend Strategic Partnership - India-Bangladesh ties transcend strategic partnership. India is a committed development partner of Bangladesh with a credit line worth 8 billion US dollars of which 80% is earmarked for infrastructure and connectivity sector.
Armed Forces Flag Day - Armed Forces Flag Day is observed on 7th of December every year across the country to honour the martyrs and Armed Forces personnel, who safeguard the motherland.
International Civil Aviation Day - The United Nations General Assembly officially recognized 7 December as International Civil Aviation Day globally. The theme of this year Civil Aviation Day is “75 Years of Connecting the World”.
Duchifat-3- The “Duchifat-3”, Israeli student’s made satellite will be launched from ISRO’s Sriharikota launch site. “Duchifat-3” is a satellite jointly built by Herzliya Science Center and Sha’ar HaNegev High School students of Israel.
Integrated Command and Control Centre - Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has inaugurated Gurgaon’s ambitious Integrated Command and Control Centre (ICCC). It has been developed as the nerve centre to provide multifaceted online smart services to people.
UN International Anti-Corruption Day - The United Nations’ (UN) International Anti-Corruption Day has been observed annually, on 9 December. This year International Anti-Corruption Day theme is “United Against Corruption”.
Walmart Vriddhi Supplier Development Programe - US retail major Walmart will train 50,000 entrepreneurs from the micro, small & medium enterprises (MSME) sector. The objective will be fulfilled by opening 25 institute hubs in India in next five years which would train the MSME entrepreneurs. The institutes will be opened under the ‘Walmart Vriddhi Supplier Development Programe‘ across the nation.
Exim Bank Provided Loan to Bangladesh - India’s Exim Bank (Export-Import Bank of India) has provided $500 million (Rs 3561 crore) Line of Credit (LoC) to Bangladesh for defence-related procurement in the neighbouring country. The Exim bank entered into an agreement with Bangladesh’s Armed Forces Division (AFD) in this regard on April 11, 2019. 
Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana - Union Government informed that loans worth over 10 lakh crore rupees have been sanctioned till 1st November this year under the Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana, PMMY.
World Travel Awards - Abu Dhabi (UAE) has been selected as the world’s leading Sports tourism Destination at the 26th edition of the World Travel Awards (WTA) being held in Muscat, Oman.
SIPRI Report on Arms Trade - Worldwide arms sales rose by nearly 5 per cent in 2018. According to a new report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), the market is dominated by the United States. US manufacturers alone accounted for 59 per cent of the market. Russia was second in the rankings for arms production with 8.6 per cent of the market. The world’s largest arms maker remains the US firm Lockheed Martin.
WADA Banned Russia - The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), banned Russia for 4 years, from participation in global sporting events, including the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, after accusing Moscow of falsifying data from an anti-doping laboratory. The Russian flag and national anthem have also been banned in global events.
Human Rights Day - Human Rights Day is observed every year on 10 December.
Indian Ocean Dialogue - The external affairs ministry is organising the 6th Indian Ocean Dialogue and Delhi Dialogue XI in New Delhi during December 13-14. For the first time, these two events will be held consecutively. The theme for the Indian Ocean Dialogue is “Indo-Pacific: Re-imagining the Indian Ocean through an Expanded Geography”, while the theme for the Delhi Dialogue is “Advancing Partnership in Indo-Pacific”.
Fast Track Courts in Odisha - 45 new fast track courts will be set up in Odisha. The 21 courts would be dedicated to cases of rape and sexual harassment of women. The remaining 24 fast track courts will specifically deal with Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) cases.