Activate the Subscription by Confirmation sent to your E-mail!!

April 2019 Daily News Current Affairs

Home > Current Affairs > Current Affairs

  1. Apr 30, 2019 
    1. General Conferences (Apr 21 - 30, 2019)
      1. Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un began their first-ever talks in Vladivostok (Russia).
      2. 1st edition of Naval Commanders’ Conference held in New Delhi.
      3. Facebook announced ban on personality quiz apps on its platform, after recent Cambridge Analytica Scandal, which helped researcher’s to access personal information of about 87 million facebooks users by using quiz app “thisisyourdigitallife”.
    2. 2nd Belt and Road Forum (BRF) held in Beijing (China), with participation of 126 countries and 29 international organisations, up from from 60 countries and international organisations seen in first edition of BRF in 2017.
      1. Like first one, India did not participate in this edition as well.
      2. Italy and Luxembourg are European Nations that recently joined BRI, Taking number of European member states to 15.
      3. As per a report released during 2nd BRI Summit, Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar (BCIM) economic corridor is no longer a part of BRI project, which was listed previosuly. Its mainly due to Indian Boycotting BRI project.
      4. About BRI -
        1. BRI, also called “21st Century Silk Road” or China’s Marshall Plan, was announced in 2013. It is made of “belt” of overland routes and maritime “road”, with aim to connect Asia, Europe and Africa.
        2. Chinese enterprises faces operational problems in overseas port projects linked to BRI. ‘Premature Mentality’ in evaluating commercial value of investment projects leads to suspension, rethinking over project costs and finally to debt trap.
        3. Examples Include Sri Lanka’s Hambantota port which was forced to lease to China for 99 years; complete suspension and rethinking of a billion dollar Malysian railway project; Projects costs in Maldives, Ethiopia, Pakistan, are worrtsome.
        4. India has always opposed BRI. Reason is violation of territorial sovereignty as China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) which is one of key BRI project, passes through Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir.
    3. 5th Asia Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) Media Summit on Climate Action and Disaster Preparedness held in Kathmandu (Nepal) with theme of “Media Solutions for Sustainable Future: Saving Lives, Building Resilient Communities”.
      1. It aims to address key issue of utilizing media’s full potential of accelerating climate action and disaster preparedness and connect different stakeholders to media professionals for collaboration and joint practical projects.
    4. Apr 30 - International Jazz Day, designated in 2011 by UNESCO.
    5. World Immunisation Week Observed Between Apr 24 - 30, 2019 with theme ‘Protected Together: Vaccines Work’.
    6. Persons Resigned / Retired (April 2019) -
      1. Rajan Anandan - Vice president for Google India and South East Asia.
      2. Abdelaziz Bouteflika - Algeria's President. He will step down after over 20 years.
      3. National Anti-Doping Agency banned professional Olympic shot putter Manpreet Kaur for 4 years for failing dope tests.
      4. Kirstjen Nielsen resigned as US homeland security secretary.
      5. Mali's Prime Minister Soumeylou Boubeye Maiga resigned.
      6. Merissa Aguilleira - Trinidian Female Cricketer. She used to play for West Indian Cricket Team.
      7. Uber Asia pacific head Amit Jain resigned, in restructuring ahead of IPO. Uber appointed Pierre-Dimitri Gore-Coty to replace Amit.
      8. Uday Kumar Varma resigned from post of Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Assocham) Secretary-General.
      9. Former Australia Cricketer Shane Watson announced his retirement from Australian Domestic Cricket Tournament Big Bash League.
    7. Misc. Appointments (April 2019) -
      1. Satish Magar appointed new national president of Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Associations of India (CREDAI), apex body of private real estate developers in India.
      2. Lawyer-turned model Sana Dua appointed as brand ambassador for Lok Sabha elections in Jammu and Kashmir. She was first runner-up of Femina Miss India 2017 contest. Also, Android application named “Sahulat” was launched to encourage elder voters for participating in elections in Jammu and Kashmir’s Rajouri district.
      3. Chicago (US City in Illinois State) elected an African-American woman as its mayor for the first time, named Lori Lightfoot.
      4. Asian Football Confederation (AFC) re-elected Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa (Bahrain) Its President for next term.
      5. Election Commission removed Andhra Pradesh Chief Secretary Anil Chandra Punetha from the post and appointed LV Subrahmanyam at the same.
      6. HRD Ministry appointed vice chancellors to 3 universities -
        1. Najma Akhtar has been appointed as the V-C of Jamia Millia Islamia. She is first woman to be appointed to the Vice Chancellor’s post at Jamia.
        2. Sanjiv Sharma has been appointed as V-C of Mahatma Gandhi Central University in Motihari (Bihar).
        3. Rajneesh Kumar Shukla has been appointed for top post at Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi Vishwavidyalaya in Wardha (Maharashtra).
      7. US Senate confirmed David Bernhardt as secretary of Interior Department.
      8. Cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni has been appointed as brand ambassador of Bus ticketing platform redBus.
      9. Gursimran Singh appointed as Vice President of Delhi Hockey Association (DHA).
      10. India Electronics and Semiconductor Association (IESA) appointed Jitendra Chaddah as its Chairman.
      11. N. Kashinath appointed as Member (Signal & Telecom) in Railway Board while V.P. Pathak appointed as Member (Materials Management) in Railway Board.
      12. Newly Apppointed Indian Ambassadors -
        1. Suhel Ajaz khan - Lebanon.
        2. Rakesh Malhotra - Cameroon.
        3. Anwar Haleem - Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
        4. Jaideep Sarkar - South Africa.
      13. Election Commission appointed Ajay V Nayak as Special Observer for West Bengal, during Lok Sabha elections 2019. Also, Vinod Zutshi is given charge as Observer for Tripura.
      14. Ravinder Kumar Passi has been appointed as chairman of Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH).
      15. German investment bank and financial services company Deutsche Bank appointed Kaushik Shaparia as chief executive officer for India.
      16. India's Mukesh Kumar has been re-elected as general secretary of Asian Judo governing body Judo Union.
      17. Noted Chef Vikas Khanna named as brand ambassador of Indo-American Arts Council (IAAC), cultural organisation which will organise annual New York Indian Film Festival (NYIFF).
      18. Head Coach of India Cricket Team, Ravi Shastri appointed as Exclusive Corporate Ambassador to Indian Business Community of Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (RAKEZ) in Dubai.
      19. Social Platform Twitter appointed Manish Maheshwari as Managing Director of its India operations.
      20. Pune-born Puranik Yogendra become first ethnic Indian to contest and win an election in Japan, after being elected to Tokyo’s Edogawa Ward assembly.
      21. Siddhartha Mohanty appointed as Chief Operating Officer (COO) of LIC Housing Finance.
      22. Doru Isac (Romania ) has been appointed as new technical director for Indian football team.
      23. Dilip Kumar appointed as Officer on Special Duty (OSD) in office of Lokpal.
    8. Obituaries (April 2019) -
      1. J Mahendran - Noted Tamil Director.
      2. Kartik Chandra Rath - Noted theatre organiser and dramatist.
      3. Viharidas Gopaldas Patel - Noted economist, also called Father of Entrepreneurship Movement in India.
      4. Silamboli Su. Chellappan - Noted Tamil Scholar and orator.
      5. Sydney Brenner - Noted South African Biologist who helped decipher genetic code and jointly won 2002 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
      6. Elriesa Theunissen-Fourie - South Africa's Women cricketer.
      7. B A Sanadi - Noted Kannada poet.
      8. Pradeep Choubey - Noted Hindi poet.
      9. Tommy Smith - England Footballer.
      10. Colonel Raj Kapoor - Actor-cum-Director. He directed ShahRukh Khan’s television debut, Fauji.
      11. Navtej Hundal - Bollywood Actor. He played a role in recent movie ‘Uri: The Surgical Strike’.
      12. K. M. Mani - Longest-serving legislator in Kerala’s history. He represented Pala Assembly constituency for 52 years, winning all 13 elections from constituency.
      13. SK Shivakumar - Noted Scientist and Former Director of Indian Space Research Organisation Satellite Centre (ISAC). He was part of the team which had developed telemetry system for India’s first moon mission Chandrayan – I. He also served in various crucial projects.
      14. Jerrie Cobb - USA's 1st female astronaut candidate. She was also part of the "Mercury 13," a group of women selected to undergo physiological screening tests at the same time as the original Mercury Seven astronauts, as part of a private, non-NASA program.
      15. Con de Lange - Scotland Cricketer.
      16. S. Muthiah - Chennai's famed chronicler, cartographer, and journalist.
      17. Amar Paul - Noted Bengali folk singer.
      18. Rama Sengupta Paul - Noted Female mountaineer.
      19. John Singleton - Noted American Director. He earned an Oscar Nomination at age 24, becoming youngest to do so.
      20. Poongam Kannan - Former Indian Footballer.
      21. Mark Medoff - Noted American Playwright. His notable work includes Tony Award-winning play Children of a Lesser God.
      22. Former Ethiopian president Negasso Gidada Passed Away. He was first head of state after Ethiopia adopted a new constitution transforming it into a federal state.
    9. Misc. Sports Events (April 2019) -
      1. Saurav Ghosal became first Indian male squash player to enter top 10 in Professional Squash Association (PSA) world rankings.
      2. Kho-Kho Federation of India (KKFI) launched an franchise-based league for sport named Ultimate Kho-Kho, in collaboration with Dabur India Ltd.
      3. 73-year-old Israeli Isaak Hayik set a new world record as world’s oldest person to play in a professional soccer match. He played a match for FC Ironi Or Yehuda against FC Maccabi Ramat Gan.
      4. Indian women Hockey Team won bilateral series against Malaysia by 4-0.
      5. Indonesian Eni Nuraeni named by Asian Athletic Association (AAA) as the best athletic coach in Asia for the short-haul run category in 2019. Eni coaches young sprinter Lalu Muhammad Zohri, to win 100m gold in 10.20 seconds in 2019 Grand Prix Malaysia Open athletics.
      6. American golfer Tiger Woods won Masters at Augusta (US), as his 15th major Title, after 11 years.
      7. Former Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) president Jose Maria Marin banned for life from all football activities by FIFA, after being found guilty of bribery activities.
      8. International cricket council (ICC) cricket for good in partnership with UNICEF,launched #OneDay4Children, a tournament-wide campaign to help construct a better world for all child, at the World Cup 2019. 48 matches will support #OneDay4Children activity and funds gathered will strengthen UNICEF’s work for children in cricket playing nations across world.
      9. Female Cricketer Mithali Raj named as goodwill ambassador of Indian team for Street Child Cricket World Cup 2019. This is first cricket world cup for street-connected children and final will be played at Lord’s in London on May 7.
      10. Ethiopian athletes Gelete Burka (Time 2:22:48) and Abrha Milaw (Time 2:07:50) won Female and Male Titles respectively, at 43rd edition of Paris Marathon (France).
      11. India’s Bajrang Punia regained world number one spot in the men's 65kg freestyle category, as per the latest rankings issued by United World Wrestling.
      12. International Hockey Federation (FIH) imposed fine of one lakh seventy-six thousand Euros (1.3 Crores INR) on Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) for not honouring Pro League commitments.
        1. Indian men’s hockey team would join elite Pro League in early 2020 after International Hockey Federation’s approved it.
      13. 18th Asian Billiards, 20th Under-21 Asian Snooker Championship and 3rd Ladies Asian Snooker Championships hosted in Chandigarh.
      14. International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) banned 2008 Olympic 1,500m champion and 3-time world champion Asbel Kiprop of Kenya for 4 years for doping until February 2022.
      15. India’s 21-time world snooker and billiards champion, Pankaj Advani defeated Ehsan Heydari Nezhad of Iran to win inaugural Asian Snooker Tour title, in Bengaluru.
      16. Indian cricketer Ajinkya Rahane became first Indian player to play for Hampshire County Cricket club in England.
      17. Integrated Coach Factory (ICF) Chennai beat South Central Railway to win second Marshal of Indian Air Force Arjan Singh Memorial International hockey tournament, in Chandigarh.
      18. China’s smartphone maker OPPO became first Asian official sponsor of Wimbledon tennis championships in England.
      19. Arjuna awardee Indian golfer Gaganjeet Bhullar won outstanding achievement as a player award at 4th edition of annual India Golf Industry Association (GIA) awards at Delhi Golf Club.
      20. Australia’s Claire Polosak became first woman umpire to Officiate in a men’s ODI, in final match of ICC World Cricket League 2.
      21. Asian Road Para-Cycling Championships 2019 held in Tashkent (Uzbekistan). Indian para cyclists won a silver (Divij Shah) and two bronze medals (Gurlal Singh and Sudhakar Marathe).
      22. India’s Table Tennis player Sathiyan Gnanasekaran became first Indian to break into the world’s top 25 of the latest International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Rankings. Sharath Kamal Achanta is only other Indian beside him in top 50 position, ranked 46th.
      23. Raheem Sterling (England) has been named 2019 footballer of year by Football Writers’ Association (FWA). Nikita Parris won FWA Women’s Footballer of Year award.
      24. BCCI recommended Cricketers Mohammad Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Ravindra Jadeja and Female Cricketer Poonam Yadav for Arjuna award 2019. Also, All India Football Federation (AIFF) recommended Gurpreet Singh Sandhu and Jeje Lalpekhlua for Arjuna Award 2019.
    10. Industrial Awards (April 2019) -
      1. Hero MotoCorp Chairman Pawan Munjal honoured by Asian Tour with a “Special Achievement Award” for his contributions to Asian Golf, at Hero Indian Open Golf tournament in Gurugram (Haryana).
      2. Tata Steel has been named as ‘Global Slag Company of the Year’ at the 14th Global Slag Conference and Exhibition 2019, in Aachen (Germany).
      3. A K Singh, director at Life Sciences, DRDO has been honoured with Lifetime Achievement Award 2019 during 4th APJ Abdul Kalam Innovation Conclave at Chandigarh University, Mohali.
      4. Digital Sukoon founder, Sudhanshu Kumar honoured with Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Nobel Award by International Human Rights Council.
      5. Mint’s Teena Thacker won Citi Journalistic Excellence Award. for her long story in Mint on Johnson and Johnson (J&J's) faulty hip implants in India.
      6. Fincare Small Finance Bank (SFB) honoured with Celent Model Bank 2019 Award in Financial Inclusion category, for ‘Redesigning Lending to Reach Small Businesses’.
        1. The award recognizes LAP (Loans Against Property) D.Lite, a tab-based solution by Fincare SFB for origination and instant underwriting of loans against property targeted at micro and small enterprises. LAP D.Lite is one of the 22 initiatives from around world to receive the award.
    11. GDP Growth Forecasts (April 2019) -
      1. Asian Development Bank downgraded economic growth forecasts for India and Southeast Asia for 2019 as global risks from trade tensions to Brexit mount. GDP in India will increase 7.2 percent, down from December forecast of 7.6 percent. Southeast Asia’s growth estimate was lowered to 4.9 %.
      2. India’s GDP growth projection for 2019-20 lowered to 7.3 % by India Ratings and Research, a Fitch Group company. Earlier projected GDP growth was 7.5 %.
      3. As per World Bank, India’s GDP growth will accelerate to 7.5% in FY 19-20. Real GDP growth is estimated at 7.2% in FY18/19.
    12. Lebanon’s capital Beirut has set a new Guinness World Record for most number of national flags displayed in one city for 24 hours, By raising 26,852 Lebanese flags for 24 hours. It broke record of New York’s Waterloo of raising 25,599 flags.
    13. According to whitepaper ‘Current State of Cybercrime-2019’, by USE Based RSA Security (Owned by Dell Technologies), social media fraud has increased by 43% in 2018. It will continue in 2019 because of ease of using, absence of fees and multiple other benefits of these platforms.
      1. Fraud from mobile apps has increased by 680% between 2015 and 2018, with frauds originating in mobile channels growing by 70% in 2018.
    14. Six grassroots environmental activists received Goldman Environmental Prize 2019 -
      1. Linda Garcia (US) - Rallied local communities to prevent construction of North America’s largest oil export terminal in Vancouver.
      2. Ana Colovic Lesoska (North Macedonia) - Led 7 year campaign to cut off international funding for two large hydropower plants project from being built in Mavrovo National Park (country’s largest national park).
      3. Bayarjargal Agvaantseren (Mongolia) - Led fight to create 1.8 million-acre Tost Tosonbumba Nature Reserve (in South Gobi Desert) which is a critical habitat for vulnerable snow leopard.
      4. Alfred Brownell (Liberia) - Stopped destruction of Liberia’s tropical forests by palm oil plantation developers.
      5. Jacqueline Evans (Cook Islands) - Led 5 year campaign to protect Islands’ stunning marine biodiversity and for conservation and sustainable management of all of Cook Islands’ ocean territory and creation of 15 marine protected areas.
      6. Alberto Curamil (Chile) - A jailed indigenous activist who organized his Mapuche community to protest construction of hydroelectric projects on sacred Cautín River in Chile.
    15. Barcelona FC won 20 Teams Spanish La Liga Football title 2019 by defeating Levante FC. This was Barcelona’s 26th La Liga league title.
    16. An international collaboration of 20 research organizations led by Hyderabad-based International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) identified climate resilient genes in chickpea.
      1. Study based on complete genome sequencing of 429 chickpea lines from 45 different countries, identified that chickpea has four important genes for heat tolerance and three important genes for drought tolerance. It will help in developing newer chickpea varieties which can tolerate temperatures up to 38°C.
      2. Identification of other genes with important agronomic traits (high yield, test weight, kernel weight, maturity, plant height, and lodging resistance) will help in increasing crop yield and providing better resistance to pests and diseases.
      3. Chickpea is an annual legume of Fabaceae family and is highly rich in protein. It is also known by name of gram, Bengal Gram, Garbanzo, Garbanzo bean, and Egyptian pea.
    17. Goverment signed Contracts for Construction of 16 Anti Submarine Warfare Shallow Water Craft (ASW SWC) with CSL Kochi and GRSE Kolkata (8 by Each Shipyard). Delivery of ships is to commence from October 2022, with two ships per year subsequently, by each shipyard.
  2. Apr 29, 2019
    1. ISSF World Cup 2019 (2nd Leg - Beijing (China)) (Rifle / Pistol) -
      1. India Ranked at top. Indian Medalists -
        1. Divyansh Singh Panwar - Silver in 10 metre air rifle
        2. Abhishek Verma - Gold in 10 Metre Air Pistol
        3. Mixed team (Saurabh Chaudhary/Manu Bhaker) - Gold in 10 metre air pistol
        4. Mixed team ( Divyansh Singh Panwar/Anjum Moudgil) - Gold in 10 metre air rifle
        5. In 1st Leg of ISSF World Cup in New Delhi, India had won 3 Gold Medals. Now India is at top with total 7 Medals - 3 in Leg 1 in New Delhi and 4 in Leg 2 in Bejing. India is currently at top of Medal Tally.
        6. Indian Medallists also got Olympic Quota for Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
        7. Upcoming assignments under ISSF World cup 2019 will be in Munich (Germany) and Rio de Janeiro (Brazil). Final is to be decided.
      2. Medal Tally -
        Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
        1  India 6 1 0 7
        2  China  3 8 7 18
        3  United States  3 2 0 5
        4  Hungary  3 1 1 5
        5  Russia  2 4 3 9
    2. Forbes' First Blockchain’s Billion Dollar Babies list, featuring top 50 organizations that are leading in adapting decentralized ledgers to their business -
      1. Apart from top players like Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, and Walmart, The List also includes six giants from world of blockchain technology - Coinbase, Bitfury, Gemini, Ripple, and Circle.
      2. US based Insurer MetLife is also Included in List.
    3. Professional Footballers' Association (PFA) Awards -
      1. Player of the Year - Virgil van Dijk, Liverpool
      2. Young Player of the Year - Raheem Sterling, Manchester City
      3. Women's Player of the Year - Vivianne Miedema, Arsenal
      4. Women's Young Player of the Year - Georgia Stanway, Manchester City
      5. PFA Merit Award - Steph Houghton, Manchester City
    4. Wipro Consumer Care Ltd. acquired Philippines based personal care company 'Splash'.
    5. Canara Bank and its life insurance partner Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance launched ’Web Assurance’ to enable its customers to purchase life insurance in a convenient and hassle-free way.
      1. Canara HSBC Oriental Bank of Commerce Life Insurance company is jointly owned by Canara Bank (51%) and Oriental Bank of Commerce (23%) and HSBC Insurance Holdings (26%).
    6. Former South African Cricketer Jacques Kallis has been honoured with Order of Ikhamanga in Silver Division.
      1. This award was instituted in 2003 and is granted by President of South Africa for achievements in arts, culture, literature, music, journalism, and sports (which were initially recognised by Order of the Baobab).
      2. It has three classes : Gold (exceptional achievement), Silver (excellent achievement), Bronze (outstanding achievement).
    7. 2019 Barcelona Open Banco Sabadell Men's Tennis Title (Spain) -
      1. Singles - Dominic Thiem (Austria)
      2. Doubles - Colombia's Juan Sebastián Cabal AND Robert Farah
    8. 2019 Porsche Tennis Grand Prix Women's Title (Also Called Stuttgart Open) (Germany) -
      1. Singles - Petra Kvitová (Czech Republic), Defeated Estonia's Anett Kontaveit.
      2. Doubles - Germany's Mona Barthel AND Anna-Lena Friedsam
    9. 2019 Kunming Open Tennis Title (China) -
      1. Men's Singles - Jay Clarke (United Kingdom)
      2. Women's Singles - Zheng Saisai (China)
      3. Men's Doubles - Australia's Max Purcell AND Luke Saville
      4. Women's Doubles - China's Peng Shuai AND Yang Zhaoxuan
    10. Mercedes Racer Valtteri Bottas (Finland) won Azerbaijan Grand Prix 2019 -
      1. Formula 1 Season 2019 -
        Round Grand Prix Winner date
        1 Australian Grand Prix Valtteri Bottas (Finland) 17 March
        2 Bahrain Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton (UK) 31 March
        3 Chinese Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton (UK) 14 April
        4 Azerbaijan Grand Prix Valtteri Bottas (Finland) 28 April
        5 Spanish Grand Prix   12 May
        6 Monaco Grand Prix   26 May
        7 Canadian Grand Prix   9 June
        8 French Grand Prix   23 June
        9 Austrian Grand Prix   30 June
        10 British Grand Prix   14 July
        11 German Grand Prix   28 July
        12 Hungarian Grand Prix   4 August
        13 Belgian Grand Prix   1 September
        14 Italian Grand Prix   8 September
        15 Singapore Grand Prix   22 September
        16 Russian Grand Prix   29 September
        17 Japanese Grand Prix   13 October
        18 Mexican Grand Prix   27 October
        19 United States Grand Prix   3 November
        20 Brazilian Grand Prix   17 November
        21 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix   1 December
    11. Book “Politics of Jugaad: The Coalition Handbook” authored by journalist Saba Naqvi has been released, examining possibility of coalition government after 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
    12. Sri Lanka Govt. announced ban on covering of face with burqa, veil or in any manner that prevents identification of person, after recent deadly blasts that caused huge casualties.
    13. Spain’s ruling socialist party won General elections, capturing 123 seats in the 350-seat Congress of Deputies. Socialist Party's Pedro Sanchez will seek backing from smaller parties to maintain power, as it has not got a clear majority.
    14. PepsiCo withdrew lawsuit it filed against 4 Gujarat potato farmers, accuising them of of infringing its patent of FC5 Potato variety used in Lays' Potato Chips.
    15. Scientists in Chile found oldest single Human footprint at paleo-archaeological site Pilauco (Osorno, Chile), dateing back 15600 years. It can reveal new findings about human colonisation of Patagonia.
      1. It was originally excavated in 2010, after long research researchers have now ruled out animals and have confirmed that it belongs to a male adult human.
      2. An earlier footprint found at a site south of Osorno was found to be about 1,000 years more recent.
    16. Indonesia announced its plans to move its capital away from Jakarta, out of the crowded Java Island to ensure more equitable development of the country amid environmental concerns and overcrowding issues. New location is yet unknown.
    17. Government raised import duty on wheat from existing 30% to 40% to support local farmers interests, amid huge domestic wheat production. It will discourage milers to import wheat and buy local produce and help protect farm prices.
    18. 3 Indians named in TIME 100 Most Influential People list of 2019 - Menaka Guruswamy, Arundhati Katju and Mukesh Ambani.
      1. Mukesh Ambani - Chairman of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL).
      2. Menaka Guruswamy and Arundhati Katju - They are Indian women lawyers who lead legal battle to strike down colonial era’s Section 377 of Indian Penal Code (IPC), which criminalized gay sex.
    19. IIT Madras researcher developed a method for reading documents in Bharati Script by using a multi-lingual optical character recognition (OCR) scheme. Bharati is a unified script for nine Indian languages which is being proposed as a common script for India. The integrated script includes Devnagari, Bengali, Gurmukhi, Gujarati, Oriya, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam and Tamil.
      1. Many European languages use Roman script as a common script, which eases communication across all nations using those languages. Similarly, in India, a common script can bring down many communication barriers here.
    20. Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria appointed as Vice Chief of Indian Air Force, after superannuation of Anil Khosla.
    21. Apr 29 - International Dance Day. It marks birth anniversary of Jean-Georges Noverre (born on 29 April 1727), a French dancer, and creator of modern ballet, and great reformer of dance.
  3. Apr 28, 2019
    1. Apr 28 - World Day for Safety and Health at Work, observed annually since 2003.
    2. 48th Asian Weightlifting Championships 2019 (Ningbo, China) -
      1. 214 athletes from 27 nations participated in. India won 5 medals (3 silver and 2 bronze) medals and finished at 10th place -
      2. Medal Table (Big (Total result) and Small (Snatch and Clean & Jerk)) -
        1. Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
          1  China 11 6 2 19
          2  North Korea 2 4 4 10
          3  Iran 2 3 1 6
          4  South Korea 2 0 2 4
          5  Chinese Taipei 1 1 0 2
           Vietnam 1 1 0 2
          7  Saudi Arabia 1 0 0 1
          8  Philippines 0 1 1 2
           Uzbekistan 0 1 1 2
          10  India 0 1 0 1
           Malaysia 0 1 0 1
           Mongolia 0 1 0 1
      3. Medals won by Indian Athletes -
        1. S.No. Category Event Name Medal
          1. Women 49-kg Snatch Jhili Dalabehera Silver
          2. Women 49-kg Clean and Jerk Jhili Dalabehera Silver
          3. Women 49-kg Total (Snatch + Clean and Jerk) Jhili Dalabehera Silver
          4. Men 102-kg Clean and Jerk Pardeep Singh Bronze
          5. Women 49-kg Clean and Jerk Mirabai Chanu Bronze
    3. 39th Badminton Asia Championships 2019 (Wuhan, China) -
      1. Event Gold Silver Bronze
        Men's singles  Kento Momota (Japan)  Shi Yuqi (China)  Nguyen Tien Minh (Vietnam)
         Chou Tien-chen (Chinese Taipei)
        Women's singles  Akane Yamaguchi (Japan)  He Bingjiao (China)  Chen Yufei (China)
         Cai Yanyan (China)
        Men's doubles  Hiroyuki Endo (Japan)
         Yuta Watanabe (Japan)
         Marcus Fernaldi Gideon (Indonesia)
         Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo (Indonesia)
         Takeshi Kamura (Japan)
         Keigo Sonoda (Japan)
         Kang Min-hyuk (South Korea)
         Kim Won-ho (South Korea)
        Women's doubles  Chen Qingchen (China)
         Jia Yifan (China)
         Mayu Matsumoto (Japan)
         Wakana Nagahara (Japan)
         Yuki Fukushima (Japan)
         Sayaka Hirota (Japan)
         Della Destiara Haris (Indonesia)
         Rizki Amelia Pradipta (Indonesia)
        Mixed doubles  Wang Yilü (China)
         Huang Dongping (China)
         He Jiting (China)
         Du Yue (China)
         Zheng Siwei (China)
         Huang Yaqiong (China)
         Dechapol Puavaranukroh (Thailand)
         Sapsiree Taerattanachai (Thailand)
      2. Medal Table -
        1. Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
          1  Japan 3 1 2 6
          2  China 2 3 3 8
          3  Indonesia 0 1 1 2
          4  Chinese Taipei 0 0 1 1
           South Korea 0 0 1 1
           Thailand 0 0 1 1
           Vietnam 0 0 1 1
      3. Indian Badminton Players did not any medal at the event.
    4. Asian Boxing Championships 2019 (Bangkok, Thailand) -
      1. India won 13 medals (2 gold, 4 silver, and 7 bronze).
      2. Indian Medallists -
        1. S. No.        Category (kg)              Name   Medal
          1.          52     Amit Panghal Gold
          2.          81      Pooja Rani Gold
          3.         64     Simranjit Kaur Silver
          4.         56  Kavinder Singh Bisht Silver
          5.         49      Deepak Singh Silver
          6.         75   Ashish Chaudhary Silver
          7.         51       Nikhat Zareen Bronze
          8.         54       Manisha Moun Bronze
          9.         57       Sonia Chahal Bronze
          10.          60         Sarita Devi Bronze
          11.          60         Shiva Thapa Bronze
          12.          69            Ashish Bronze
          13.         +91         Satish Kumar Bronze
    5. 2019 Asian Wrestling Championships (Xi'an, China) -
      1. Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
        1  Iran 11 0 6 17
        2  China 5 5 6 16
        3  Japan 4 7 6 17
        4  Uzbekistan 2 3 5 10
        5  Kazakhstan 2 2 12 16
        6  Kyrgyzstan 2 1 5 8
        7  South Korea 2 1 3 6
        8  India 1 6 9 16
        9  North Korea 1 3 2 6
        10  Mongolia 0 2 5 7
        11  Chinese Taipei 0 0 1 1
      2. India was ranked 8th, with 16 Medals (1 G, 6 S, 9 B). India's only Gold Medal was won by Bajrang Punia (current World number one). He defeated Kazakhstan's Sayatbek Okassov in 65kg men's freestyle final.
        1. Bajrang Punia is also first Indian wrestler to be invited by American wrestling body for a special fight at iconic Madison Square Garden in New York, US. He will take on two-time US national champion Yianni Diakomahlis.
      3. Silver Medals were won by Amit Kumar Dhankar, Parveen Rana, Vicky Chahar, Gurpreet Singh, Harpreet Singh, Sunil Kumar.
    6. 2019 World Table Tennis Championships were held in Budapest (Hungary) -
      1. Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
        1  China 5 1 6 12
        2  Japan 0 2 1 3
        3  Sweden 0 1 0 1
        4  Romania 0 0.5 0 0.5
         Spain 0 0.5 0 0.5
        6  Germany 0 0 1 1
         Portugal 0 0 1 1
         South Korea 0 0 1 1
      2. Medallists -
        1. Event Gold Silver Bronze
          Men's Singles 
           Ma Long (China)  Mattias Falck (Sweden)  Liang Jingkun (China)
           An Jae-hyun (South Korea)
          Women's Singles 
           Liu Shiwen (China)  Chen Meng (China)  Ding Ning (China)
           Wang Manyu (China)
          Men's Doubles 
           Ma Long (China)
          Wang Chuqin (China)
           Ovidiu Ionescu (Romania)
           Álvaro Robles (Spain)
           Tiago Apolónia (Portugal)
           João Monteiro (Portugal)
           Liang Jingkun (China)
           Lin Gaoyuan (China)
          Women's Doubles   Sun Yingsha (China)
          Wang Manyu (China)
           Hina Hayata (Japan)
           Mima Ito (Japan)
           Honoka Hashimoto (Japan)
           Hitomi Sato (Japan)
           Chen Meng (China)
           Zhu Yuling (China)
          Mixed Doubles   Xu Xin (China)
          Liu Shiwen (China)
           Maharu Yoshimura (Japan)
           Kasumi Ishikawa (Japan)
           Fan Zhendong (China)
           Ding Ning (China)
           Patrick Franziska (Germany)
           Petrissa Solja (Germany)
    7. Indian Navy Warships INS Kolkata and INS Shakti arrived South Korean port city of Busan, after participating in International Fleet Review (IFR), organised to celebrate 70th anniversary of Chinese Navy. 2 ships will now participate in ADMM-Plus Maritime Security Field Training Exercise (FTX) at Busan.
    8. According to report by Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) -
      1. World’s military expenditure risen by 2.6% to reach 1.82 $ trillion in 2018 (2.1% of global GDP).
      2. US and China are 2 biggest spenders, with 649 billion USD and 250 billion USD defence expenditures respectively.
      3. India’s military expenditure had hiked by 3.1% to reach 66.5 $ billion and Pakistan’s expenditure grew by 11% to reach 11.4 $ billion.
      4. India was 4th highest Defence Spender in 2018. 3rd Place was accquired by Saudi Arabia (67.6 Billion USD).
    9. China launched 2 Tianhui II-01 satellites, aimed to perform scientific experiments, land resource and geographic survey, and mapping. The satellites were launched by a Long March 4B carrier rocket.
    10. Biography of Indian diplomat, and politician V K Krishna Menon, titled “Chequered Brilliance: The Many Lives of V K Krishna Menon” written by Former union minister and writer Jairam Ramesh has been released.
    11. Meghalaya Cabinet approved creation of a new Directorate of Dairy Development to boost milk production.
    12. As per 2019 Global Food Policy Report (GFPR) prepared by Washington DC-based International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) -
      1. 82 Crore people globally are facing chronic food deprivation.
      2. Rural transformation and revitalization have been pre-eminent goal of India’s development efforts since independence.
      3. It also points out Increasing urbanization, income, growing integration of food supply chains and food systems in India which offer new opportunities for employment in rural areas.
    13. Jamia Millia Islamia (New Delhi) Researchers have developed an ultrasensitive quantum thermometer by using graphene quantum dots. It can precisely measure a wide range of temperature from 27 degree C to –196 degree C. It has high sensitivity in different temperatures and has quick response time of about 300 milliseconds.
    14. According to Fitch Solutions Macro Research report, India willl be able to install 54.7 GW of wind capacity by 2022 against 60 GW target.
      1. Its part of India’s ambitious target of installing 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2022, which includes 100 GW from solar, 60 GW from wind, 10GW from bio-power and 5 GW from small hydro-power.
  4. Apr 27, 2019
    1. RBI will shortly issue Rs  20 denomination banknotes in Mahatma Gandhi (New) Series, with signature of RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das.
      1. New Rs  20 banknote has motif of Ellora Caves on reverse, depicting country's cultural heritage. The base colour is Greenish Yellow.
      2. Its dimensions will be 63 X 129 mm.
    2. RBI extended coverage of Ombudsman Scheme for Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) 2018 to eligible Non Deposit Taking Non Banking Financial Companies (NBFC-NDs)., with asset size of over 100 crores.
      1. However, NBFC-Infrastructure Finance Company (NBFC-IFC), Core Investment Company (CIC), Infrastructure Debt Fund-Non-banking Financial Company (IDF-NBFC) and NBFCs under liquidation are excluded from the ambit of Scheme.
      2. Ombudsman Scheme for Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) 2018 was launched in February 2018 for redressal of complaints against NBFCs registered with RBI under Section 45-IA of RBI Act, 1934. Initially, it covered all deposit accepting NBFCs.
    3. US President Donald Trump rejected UN 2013 Arms Trade Treaty aimed at regulating global arms trade, describing it as an intrusion on US sovereignty. Although it was endorsed by previous US prez Barack Obama.
      1. 2013 Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) came into effect in December 2014 after over 65 countries signed it in June 2013. UN General Assembly endorsed It with a vote of 154 to 3. Only nations opposed to ATT were Iran, North Korea, and Syria.
      2. It seeks to regulate flow of weapons into conflicted zones. It requires member countries to keep records of international transfers of weapons and to prohibit cross-border shipments that can be used in human rights violations or attacks on civilians. So far, 130 countries have signed it, while only 101 ratified and joined it. USA, China and Russia have not joined the treaty.
      3. Other US withdrawls from international pacts, under President Trump Reign -
        1. US pulls out of UN’s migrant and refugee pact (Dec 2017), deeming it ‘inconsistent’ with its immigration policies.
        2. US President Donald Trump signs executive order to pull US out of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) (Jan 2017). He felt it to be harmful to American workers and manufacturing.
        3. US withdrawal from Paris Agreement on Climate Change (June 2017) - He stated that it would undermine US economy, cost US jobs, weaken American national sovereignty and put US at a permanent disadvantage.
        4. US and Israel withdraws from UNESCO (October 2017), accusing it of anti-Israel bias.
        5. US regulators repeal net neutrality rules (December 2017), to repeal 2015 Open Internet Order which protects net neutrality in USA.
        6. US withdrawal from 2015 Iran nuclear deal (May 2018).
        7. United States withdraws from UN Human Rights Council (June 2018).
        8. US to end India's preferential trade treatment under Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) programme (March 2019). GSP programme allows USD 5.6 billion worth of Indian exports to enter USA duty-free.
        9. US pulls out of Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces treaty with Russia (February 2019). It was signed with Russia during Cold War.
    4. USA imposed sanctions on Pakistan after the nation refused to take back its citizen deportees and visa over-stayers from America. US may withhold visas of Pakistanis beginning with its senior officials.
      1. With these sanctions, Pakistan is latest to join list of 10 nations imposed with sanctions under US Immigration and Nationality Act according to which countries refusing to take back deportees and visa over-stayers will be denied American visas. Ghana and Pakistan have been included in the list in 2019.
    5. UN’s International Labour Organization (ILO) announced that Qatar will officially abolish its Exit Visa system for all foreign workers by end of 2019. Amnesty International (human rights group) accused that Qatar is failing to implement reforms and stop widespread labour abuse.
      1. Qatar has revived its pledge to reform labour section, and introduced a minimum monthly minimum of 750 riyals ($206).
      2. In September 2018, Qatar approved scrapping “kafala”, which was eliminated for majority of workers by end of 2018. In 2019 it will be extended to all remaining categories of workers.
      3. Kafala system is a Sponsorship system which regulates status of migrant workers. It requires unskilled labourers to have an in-country sponsor (mostly their employer) who is responsible for their visa and legal status. This leads to requiring prior consent of their employer before changing jobs or leaving, which further leads to their exploitation.
    6. Britain pledged £4 million to support global anti-slavery projects. Six organisations, such as charity Anti-Slavery International and UN University will share aid money from The Modern Slavery Innovation Fund. The funding will also be used to run workshops on modern slavery in South Africa, improve support for survivors in India, and develop an online data hub to boost anti-slavery policies.
    7. IT service management Firm Financial Software Services (FSS) launched real time voice banking platform called FSS voice commerce. It uses machine-learning language processing techniques and offers meaningful, contextual, and personalized banking interactions to customers.
    8. As per recently published US-based World Resources Institute (WRI) report, world lost 12 million hectares (30 million acres) of tropical tree cover in 2018. It is fourth largest annual decline since global satellite data become available in 2001.
      1. Most destruction was seen in Brazil (13,500 sq-km), Congo (4,800 sq-km), Indonesia (3,400 sq-km), Colombia (1,800 sq-km), Bolivia (1,500 sq-km) and Madagascar lost 2% of its entire rainforest in 2018.
      2. Only Indonesia showed reduction in loss of its primary forest from past 2 years. It has world’s 3rd largest total area of tropical forest and is biggest producer of palm oil.
      3. Forests act as Carbon sink by absorbing about 30% of man-made GHG emissions (over 11 billion tons of CO2 per year) on other hand ocean soaks another 23%. So, losing vast tracts of tropical forest not only releases carbon into atmosphere, it also reduces size of carbon sink.
      4. WRI (headquartered in Washington, D.C., USA) was established in 1982.
    9. Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) in Jun 2018, had set up a 13 member panel led by Suresh Mathur, to review regulatory framework on micro insurance, and to recommend measures to increase demand for such products.
      1. It was formed because of less than desired offtake of micro insurance products despite of their inherent benefits in country.
      2. Microinsurance policies are a General or Life Insurance policy with a sum assured of Rs 50,000 or less.
    10. USA has again placed India on its ‘Priority Watch List’, alleging lack of sufficient measurable improvements to its Intellectual Property (IP) framework on long-standing and new challenges, which has negatively affected American right holders over past year.
      1. Office of US Trade Representative identified 11 countries, including India, in its ‘Priority Watch List’. List is topped by China.
      2. Besides this, US Trade body has placed 25 countries, including Pakistan, Turkey and the UAE, on watchlist.
      3. India has taken steps to address intellectual property challenges and promote IP protection and enforcement. However, many of actions have not yet translated into concrete benefits for innovators and creators and long-standing deficiencies persist.
    11. Microsoft reached a valuation of one trillion dollars for first time, becoming 3rd publicly-traded company to reach the threshold after Apple and Amazon passed it in 2018.
    12. Niti Aayog's Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) and Unicef India signed Letter of Intent (LoI) to provide an open platform to promote participation, skilling and empowerment among young children across different communities. Plan will be implemented through Atal Tinkering Lab initiative to orient burgeoning innovation ecosystem towards achieving Sustainable Development Goals with a focus on child rights.
    13. Finance ministry ratified hike of the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) interest rate to 8.65% as approved by retirement fund manager EPFO (From 8.55 % Earlier).
    14. Namibia won ICC World Cricket League Division 2, defeartng Oman in Windhoek (Namibia). During the tournament, USA United States Cricket Team gained ODI Cricket status for first time. Oman and Papua New Guinea also got ODI Status.
    15. Alberta University (Canada) paleontologists discovered 95 million-year-old coin-sized ‘cartoon-eyed’ crab species called Callichimaeraperplexa. Its name is an allusion to a Greek mythological creature & means “perplexing beautiful chimera.
    16. NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope ejected measurements validate that Universe is expanding about 9% faster than expected based on its trajectory seen shortly after big bang. Adam Riess and his SH0ES (Supernova, H0, for the Equation of State) Team examined light from 70 stars in our neighboring galaxy, Large Magellanic Cloud using DASH method.
    17. One of world’s largest diamonds weighing 1,758 carats has been found in Botswana (southern Africa). It weighed nearly 352 grams and measured 83mm x 62mm x 46mm.
    18. Arunachalam Muruganantham (Tamil Nadu), inventor of a low-cost sanitary pad-making machine and grassroots mechanism has been featured at 45th rank in Fortune magazine’s 2019 list of world’s 50 greatest leaders. He invented machine in 2004 that remakes cellulose into low-cost sanitary napkins, costing INR 137000. He marketed over 1300 machines through his company Jayaashree Industries.
      1. Top 3 - Bill and Melinda Gates, Jacinda Ardern (for her response to Christchurch mosque shootings in February), Robert Mueller (for his findings of Donald Trump campaign’s collusion with Russia).
      2. List also features Nepalese Activist Sunita Danuwar.
    19. Health insurer Max Bupa collaborated with HDFC Bank to launc ‘AnyTime Health (AND) machines, as automated model that permits customers to avail health assessment through several metrices and buy health policy dynamically.
    20. Govt. constituted a steering committee headed by Environment Mnistry Secretary C K Mishra, to implement National Clean Air Programme (NCAP).
    21. Apr 27, 2019 is observed as World Veterinary day 2019. It is observed on Last Saturday of April.
  5. Apr 26, 2019
    1. Supreme Court admitted for consideration a plea by a couple to lift the ban on Muslim women’s entry into mosques across country, after a plea by Pune-based Muslim couple. SC issued notice to Central Government, Waqf Board and All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB).
      1. As per Petition, it violates Articles 14 (Equality), 15 (Prohibition of discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth), 21 (Protection of life and personal liberty), 25 (Freedom of conscience and free profession, practice and propagation of religion) and 29 (Protection of interests of minorities) of Constitution.
    2. Dawn editor and Columnist Cyril Almeida from Pakistan won IPI’s (International Press Institute) World Press Freedom Hero award 2019, for his “critical” and “tenacious coverage” of civil-military relations in Pakistan. MadaMasr, an Egyptian news site, also won Free Media Pioneer Award 2019 of IPI and International Media Support (IMS).
    3. European Union and United Nations strengthened partnership on counter-terrorism, by signing a Framework on Counter-Terrorism sstrengthening EU-UN partnership, on occasion of their second EU-UN high-level political dialogue on Counter-Terrorism held in New York (USA).
    4. In a first, Indian Army began recruitment process of women as soldiers into military police, under name ‘Soldier General Duty (Women Military Police)’. Earlier, Government announced that women would be inducted into force in "Personnel Below Officer Rank" (PBOR) category, to eventually comprise 20 % of total Corps of Military Police.
    5. Madras high court lifted the ban on Chinese short-video app ‘TikTok’, three weeks after it had asked Government to prohibit further downloads of this popular application on Google and Apple app stores. However, high court asked owners of the app to ensure that the platform does not allow pornography.
    6. Supreme Court constituted a three-judge panel headed by Justice SA Bobde, to inquire into sexual harassment complaint by a former junior court assistant against CJI Ranjan Gogoi.
      1. Justice Bobde had inducted Justices Ramana and Banerjee into it. Justice Ramana recuse (remove himself) from the panel, who was later replaced by Justice Indu Malhotra. This is first an in-house inquiry on a sexual harassment complaint conducted in SC Court.
      2. Another Panel was formed by Supreme Court, headed by retd. Justice A K Patnaik to hold inquiry into claims of lawyer alleging conspiracy against CJI Ranjan Gogoi. It wont go into sexual harassment allegations against the CJI, as a separate panel is looking into it.
    7. Apr 26 - World Intellectual Property Day. 2019 theme is Reach for Gold: IP and Sports. On this occasion, various persons / entities were honored wityh Intellectual property Awards 2019 -
      1. Intellectual Property Rights cell (IPR cell) of Kerala Agricultural University (KAU) - For its contributions in best facilitation for registration of Geographical Indications and promotion of registered GI in country.
      2. Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST) in Trivandrum (Kerala) - Top Indian R&D Institution and Organisation for Patents & Commercialisation.
      3. Dr. Benny Antony - Top Individual for Patents and Commercialization. Dr. Anthony has over 80 international patents to his credit. He was also honoured Antony with ‘WIPO Medal for Inventors’.
    8. Former Indian Army Chief General Dalbir Singh Suhag has been appointed as India's High Commissioner to island nation Seychelles.
    9. European Space Agency (ESA) and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)’s Jointly launched Mission BepiColombo has completed series of tests, and is now ready for its crusie to Mercury.
      1. It comprises of two satellites launched together - Mercury Planetary Orbiter (MPO) and Mercury Magnetospheric Orbiter (MMO).
      2. Launched in October 2018, it is expected to arrive at Mercury in 2025. It will endure temperatures in excess of 350 °C. Later, BepiColombo will also perform first of its two flybys of Venus — the second planned for August 2021.
    10. After US refusal to extend sanctions waiver for India to import crude from Iran, India has decided to end imports from Iran. Shortfall will be met through alternate supply sources available in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, UAE and Mexico.
      1. India is world’s third-biggest oil consumer and meets more than 80 per cent of its oil needs through imports. In 2017-18, Iran was India’s third-largest supplier after Iraq and Saudi Arabia.
      2. Recently, USA announced that all buyers of Iranian oil will have to end their imports shortly or face sanctions, terminating sanctions waivers USA granted to some importers of Iranian oil in late 2018.
    11. For first time in Indonesia's history, president, vice president, members of People's Consultative Assembly (MPR), and members of local legislative bodies were elected on same day of General Elections, with over 190 million voters. Results will be out by May 22.
    12. RBI notified that banking ombudsman saw 25% rise in customer complaints in FY18 over FY17.
    13. Airtel launched video streaming app Wynk Tube, as an extension of Wynk Music, allowing users to stream audio and video of popular tracks within same interface.
  6. Apr 25, 2019
    1. Indian Army signed MOU with National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC), to build four underground tunnels - 3 along Chinese border and 1 tunnel along Pakistan border.
    2. Central Works Public Department (CPWD) constituted committee to formulate a design policy for building construction and infrastructure development, under chairmanship of M K Sharma.
    3. Indian Council of Medical Research launched ‘Malaria Elimination Research Alliance (MERA) India, as a conglomeration of partners working on malaria control in order to eliminate it from India by 2030.
      1. It aims to prioritise, plan, conduct, scale up and translate relevant research in a coordinated and combinatorial way in order to have a tangible impact of this research on the population at risk for malaria.
    4. Indian Institute of Management-Bangalore (IIMB) post-graduate programme in Enterprise Management (PGPEM) ranked 12th in APAC (Asia Pacific) listing and 61st globally in QS Executive MBA Rankings 2019. It became only Indian B-school to secure a place among top 100 B-Schools globally.
    5. German-sponsored resolution 2467 (2019), on sexual violence, is adopted by United Nations Security Council (UNSC) condemning rape as a weapon of war. Russia and China abstain from voting.
    6. National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) received RBI approval to implement e-mandates (electronic mandates) for internet banking and debit cards, which will allow users to automatically deal with their recurring payments. Limit for each mandate is set at Rs 1 Lakh, and depending on the usage, the organisation will review the limit from time to time.
      1. Both e-NACH (National Automated Clearing House) and e-mandates are 2 different services. e-NACH services are controlled by NPCI and is available at over 40 banks, while e-mandates are provided by individual banks.
    7. Indian IT Firm HCL Technologies has set up a CyberSecurity Fusion Centre (CSFC) in Frisco, Texas, US. It aims to boost business growth by providing customers with a single point of contact for business security lifecycle – from detection to repairment.
    8. Quikr acquired Bengaluru-based secondhand goods marketplace Zefo, for INR 200 Crores, to strengthen sales of its pre-owned goods business.
    9. RBI sold its entire stakes in National Bank for Agriculture & Rural Development (NABARD) and National Housing Bank (NHB) for Rs 20 crore and Rs 1,450 crores respectively. It was decided on the basis of recommendations of second Narasimham Committee, which stated that RBI could not own those entities which are regulated by it. Government now holds 100 % stake in both NHB and NABARD.
    10. Germany-based Financial Firm Wirecard partnered with RBL Bank to promote financial inclusion in India. With this, Wirecard’s customer service representatives will be able to access basic payment and banking services which include cash withdrawals and deposits as well as balance inquiries.
    11. Financial Services Firm Mobikwik collaborated with digital insurer Aegon Life Insurance to launch a Rs 20 smart digital insurance product in order to protect its wallet users from death and accident related disability cover for up to Rs. 1 lakh, Rs.1.5 lakh and Rs. 2 lakh with premium of Rs 20, Rs 30 and Rs 40 respectively.
    12. Commerce and Industry Ministry presented Vision document Startup India Vision 2024, aiming to facilitate setting up of 50,000 new start-ups in India by 2024 and creating 20 lakh employment opportunities.
      1. It has been prepared by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), under Commerce and Industry Ministry.
      2. It Notifies -
        1. Setting up of 500 new incubators and accelerators by 2024.
        2. Deployment of entire amount of Rs 10,000 crore Fund of Funds (FOF) expanding CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) funding to incubators.
        3. Setting up of Rs 1,000 crore ‘India startup fund’ to support high technology start-ups.
        4. Providing Rs 1,000 crore of seed funding by 2024
        5. Bringing 7 research parks into operation.
        6. Set up regulatory sandbox for testing of financial products.
    13. Japanese scientists successfully created first-ever artificial crater on an asteroid, givinng some clue on how solar system evolved.
      1. Hayabusa2 probe shot a projectile at Ryugu asteroid around 340 million kilometers from Earth, as part of the probes mission to explore origin of life and evolution of the solar system.
      2. Mission is scheduled to return to Earth with its samples in 2020.
    14. Mars InSight lander of NASA recorded first “marsquake,” quake on mars due to volcanic eruptions or land tides. It equals a 2.5 magnitude earthquake came on earth. It has been detected by lander’s Seismic Experiment for Interior Structure (SEIS) instrument.
    15. Jonai in Assam’s Dhemaji will host 27th convention of National Children’s Science Congress (NCSC) in September 2019.
    16. Zoologists at Trinity College Dublin discovered 2 new bird species named as Wakatobi white-eye and Wangi-Wangi white-eye in Wakatobi Archipelago of Sulawesi, Indonesia.
    17. Master Deenanath Mangeshkar Awards 2019 - -
      1. Lifetime Award – Salim Khan.
      2. Special Award for the contribution to Indian cinema – Madhur Bhandarkar.
      3. Special Award – Helen.
      4. Vagvilasini Award – VasantAbaji Dahake.
      5. Mohan Wagh Award (Best Drama of the Year 2019) – SoyareSakal.
      6. Anandmayee Puraskar– Pandit Suresh Talwalkar.
      7. Award for music and art – Classical dancer Sucheta Bhide-Chapekar.
    18. State Bank of India (SBI) launched India’s first ‘Green Car Loan’ (Electric Vehicle) to encourage customers to buy electric vehicles. It will offer the loan at 20 basis points lower than the interest rate on the existing car loan schemes. Its in line with government’s pledge of ensuring 30% EVs on road by 2030.
    19. SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India) reduced minimum subscription requirement as well as defined trading lots for Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) and Infrastructure Investment Trusts (InvITs).
      1. SEBI increased leverage limit for InvITs from 49% to 70%.
      2. While making an IPO and follow-on offer, minimum subscription shall not be less than Rs 1 lakh for InvITs and Rs 50,000 for REITs.
      3. Currently, in case of a REIT issue, minimum subscription from any investor in an initial offer and follow-on public offer is not less than Rs 2 lakh, while same is Rs 10 lakh for InvIT.
    20. Apr 25 - World Malaria Day. 2019 theme is “Zero malaria starts with me”.
  7. Apr 24, 2019
    1. 23rd Asian Athletics Championships held in Doha (Qatar) -
      1. 43 nations participated in the events.
      2. Medal Table -
        1. Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
          1  Bahrain 11 7 4 22
          2  China 9 13 7 29
          3  Japan 5 4 9 18
          4  India  3 7 7 17
          5  Uzbekistan  3 0 2 5
          6  Qatar  2 1 3 6
          7  Thailand  2 0 2 4
          8  Kazakhstan 1 4 3 8
          9  Kuwait  1 3 0 4
          10  Chinese Taipei  1 2 1 4
      3. India with 17 medals (3 Gold, 7 silver and 7 bronze) finished fourth in the events -
        1. Indian Medalists -





            Tejinder Pal Singh Toor

            Men's shot put



            Gomathi Marimuthu

            Women's 800m



            PU Chitra

            Women's 1500m race



            Ajay Kumar Saroj

            Men's 1500m race



            Swapna Barman 

            Women’s heptathlon



            Annu Rani

            Women’s javelin throw



            Shivpal Singh 

            Men’s javelin throw



            Avinash Sable

            Men’s 3000m steeplechase



            Prachi, Poovamma, Saritaben Gayakwad and VK Vismaya

            Women's 4x400m relay



            Muhammed Anas, MP Poovamma, VK Vismaya and Arokia Rajiv

            4x400m mixed relay



            Dutee Chand

            Women’s 200m



            M R Poovamma

            Women’s 400m



            Parul Chaudhary

            Women’s 5000m race



            Sanjivani Jadhav

            Women’s 10,000 m



            Gavit Murali Kumar

            Men’s 10,000m



            M P Jabir

            Men’s 400m hurdles



            Saritaben Gayakwad

            Women’s 400m hurdles


    2. April 24 is Observed as -
      1. International Day of Multilateralism and Diplomacy for Peace. 2019 is First ever observance of this day.
      2. World Day for Laboratory Animals.
      3. National Panchayati Raj Day in India. It began in 2010. It marks passing of Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act, 1992 that came into force with effect from 24 April 1993.
    3. Calcutta Sports Journalists’ club (CSJC) awards 2019 -
      1. Jhulan Goswami (Female Cricketer) - Sportsperson of the Year
      2. Sukumar Samajpati (Footballer), Sambaran Banerjee (Cricketer) - Lifetime Achievement
      3. State awards -
        1. Best cricketer – Tanusree Sarkar
        2. Best footballer- Pritam Kotal
        3. Best athlete - Lily Das
    4. 2nd edition of Rabindranath Tagore Literary Prize awarded to author Rana Dasgupta for his 2010 novel Solo, a tale of estrangement and the ultimate failure of material existence. The award carries a $10,000, a Tagore statue and a certificate.
      1. Also, Rabindranath Tagore Literary Prize for social achievement was awarded to Yohei Sasakawa, World Health Organization Goodwill Ambassador for Lseprosy Elimination, for his incredible efforts to uproot leprosy and great contribution to world peace.
    5. Russia successfully tested the world's first floating nuclear power plant (NPP), named Akademik Lomonosov, developed by Rosatom. It is expected to begin operations in July 2019.
    6. Indonesia released a special commemorative stamp on the theme of Ramayana to mark the 70th anniversary of the establishment of its diplomatic ties with India. It is designed by Indonesian sculptor Padmashri Bapak Nyoman Nuarta, featuring a scene from Ramayana in which Jatayu valiantly fought to save Sita.
    7. 29th edition of Abu Dhabi International Book Fair (ADIBF) began, with India as “Guest of Honour” country. It will be a Week long event.  30 publishing houses from India are taking part in the fair.
      1. Indian Ambassador to UAE Navdeep Suri launched his book, "Inked in Blood and Spirit of Freedom". The book is English translation of poem ‘Khooni Baisakhi’ on  Jallianwala Bagh massacre.
      2. Author Preeti Shenoy's New Book "Wake Up, Life Is Calling", was also featured.
    8. Niti Aayog approved proposal of Dental Council of India to allow dentists to practice as general physicians after a 3 bridge course post BDS. Syllabus curriculum, scheme of examination etc will be same as recommended for MBBS.
    9. Team of Researchers led by biologist Eric Dinerstein suggested a new roadmap titled “A Global Deal for Nature” -
      1. It aims at conserving the planet's ecosystem and avert sixth mass extinction on earth.
      2. It calls for 30% of the planet to be protected by 2030, with an additional 20% to be maintained or restored to a natural state and designated as climate stabilization areas. It proposes 100 Billion USD annual investment for the same.
      3. If current trends in greenhouse gas emissions, conversion of natural habitats and the poaching of large animals are not reversed, it will be impossible to keep warming below 1.5°C.
      4. Linking the GDN and the Paris Agreement could solve the two major challenges facing the biosphere and all the species within it and result in a return to safe operating space for humanity.
      5. Temparature rise of 1.5°C versus 2°C -
        1. Source : World Economic Forum
    10. UAE Space Agency announced 85 percent completion of Its ‘Hope Probe’ Mars project, set to launch in July 2020.  If successful, UAE will become first Arabic and Islamic country to reach Mars.
    11. Home Affairs Ministry distributed over 3,100 special kits SAECKs (Sexual Assault Evidence Collection Kits ) for collecting blood and semen samples, besides other evidence, to carry out immediate investigations into sexual assault cases among states and Union Territories.
  8. Apr 23, 2019
    1. Apr 23 - UNESCO World Book and Copyright Day. It is being observed since 1995. For 2019, Sharjah (UAE) is declared as World Book Capital. It will be preceded by Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in 2020.
      1. Apr 23 is also observed as English Language Day.
    2. Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has undertaken an indigenous genetic mapping effort to educate a generation of students on “usefulness” of genomics. Under this, approx 1,000 rural youth will have their genomes sequenced by CSIR. Those recruited as part of genome-sample collections are representative of the country’s population diversity and the bulk of them will be college students.
    3. Egyptians are voting for constitutional amendments approved by Egyptian Parliament -
      1. Amendments extend presidential terms from 4 - 6 years. It wouls also give “current president” the right to 2 new terms totalling 12 years.
      2. The amendments confer a political role for the army to “protect” the constitution, democracy and the “civilian” nature of the state.
      3. It introduces one or more vice presidents, revive Senate and enshrine a 25 per cent quota for women in parliament.
      4. Referendum comes 8 years after a pro-democracy uprising ended Hosni Mubarak’s 30 year autocratic rule, and 6 years after military overthrow of Egypt’s first freely elected president Mohammed Morsi.
    4. African Nation Malawi will be undertaking large scale pilot tests for the world’s most advanced experimental malaria vaccine in a bid to prevent the disease. With Trade name Mosquirix, vaccine has been developed by British pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline in partnership with PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative. Four successive doses of the vaccines must be administered on a strict timetable for it to work.
    5. Iran and Pakistan will set up a joint border reaction force following to counter increasing number of terror attacks. Iran-Pakistan border skirts the volatile southeastern Iranian province of Sistan-Balochistan which has been the scene of frequent attacks on Iran’s security forces.
    6. Arab League will pay $100 million to Palestinian National Authority to plug resulting gaps since Israel has blocked tax transfers earlier in 2019.
      1. In February 2019, Israel freezed funds transferred to Palestinian Authority, accusing it of transferring the money provided by Israel to terrorists. Israel collects taxes on behalf of Palestine Authority, and says that terror salaries are encouraging further violence.
    7. IEPF (Investor Education and Protection Fund) Authority enforced Peerless General Finance and Investment Company Limited to transfer deposits worth about Rs 1514 Cr to IEPF, which were pending with the company for 15 years.   This amount was taken by the company by issuing about 1.49 Cr Deposit Certificates and include more than 1 Cr individual investors. Majority of investors belong to West Bengal.
      1. IEPF Authority will also soon commission online facility to collect primary information directly from retail investors about the deposits which have matured and are still pending with various entities for repayment or payment of interests.
    8. Rajendra Kumar Nayak appointed as 52nd Controller General of Defence Accounts (CGDA).
    9. Inter Ministerial Steering Committee of National Mission for Transformative Mobility led by Niti Aayog chief executive officer Amitabh Kant has decided to incorporate localisation conditions to avail benefits under FAME-II Scheme.
      1. It mandated that only companies that meet 50% localisation threshold will be eligible for incentives available under FAME-II scheme.
    10. Ukrainian comedian Volodymyr Zelensky will be new President of Ukraine, after he won presidential elections 2019.
    11. Coast Guard vessel ICGS C-441 has been commissioned.
    12. Central Asian Nation Kazakhstan has set up Coordinating Council for attracting foreign investments inclusive of investments from India. It aims to increase volume of investment in fixed assets in medium term to 30% of GDP of nation, with FDI as primary driver.
    13. Kotak Mahindra Bank launched first debit card-based authentication solution of NPCI e-Mandate (electronic mandate) API platform, being first ever Destination Bank to go live with both Net Banking and Debit Card-based e-mandate authentication.
      1. It will enable Kotak customers to create electronic mandates (similar to former eNACH with Aadhaar + OTP) (eNACH- Electronic National Automated Clearing House; OTP- One Time Password) via both debit card and net banking provision.
    14. As per FITCH report, RBI is first central bank in Asia-Pacific region to begin an explicit interest rate easing cycle buoyed by benign food inflation and easier global financial condition.
      1. In 4 months of 2019, RBI has cut policy interest rates twice by 0.25 % each to one-year low of 6 %. This is first back-to-back rate cut since MPC was formed in late 2016.
      2. Fitch estimates India to grow at 6.8 % (FY 2019-20) in current fiscal and 7.1 % in next (FY 2020-21).
    15. Government extended ban on import of milk and milk products from China (including chocolates, chocolate products, candies, confectionary, food preparations with milk or milk solids as an ingredient). It was imposed in September 2008. Food safety regulator FSSAI recommended bAN extension till labs at ports are modernized to test presence of toxic chemical melamine.
    16. Cryptocurrency Exchange BuyUcoin introduced new platform for wholesale cryptocurrency trading, which works on ‘free trading model’ (means it charges zero fee on any trade). This wholesale platform also known as OTC (Over-the-counter) Desk allows users to trade on a large scale with low price fluctuations.
    17. National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) approved merger of IndusInd Bank with Bharat Financial Inclusion (BFIL), a microfinance company.
    18. RBI approved HDFC for acquiring 9.9 % stake in Bandhan Bank, following Gruh Finance deal.
      1. Gruh Finance is low-cost arm of HDFC Group. After the merger, HDFC Sought to take 14.96 % state in Bandhan Bank. The same has been limited by RBI hold 9.9%. 9.9 % is maximum a non-banking finance company can own in a private bank.
    19. Apr 23 - Khongjom Day observed in Manipur. It remembers martyrs of Manipur who sacrificed their lives in last battle of independence known as ‘Khongjom War’ against Britishers on 23rd April 1891.
  9. Apr 22, 2019
    1. Apr 22 - Global Earth Day. 2019 Theme is Protect Our Species. It was first celebrated in US in 1970s, and went global by 1990s.
      1. On this occasion, UAE’s flag carrier Etihad Airways became first airline in Gulf region to operate a flight without any single-use plastics on board, to raise awareness about pollution.
    2. Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) released 2019 Index of Cancer Preparedness (ICP) (28 Nations) -
      1. India is Overall ranked 19th
      2. Cancer in 2018 caused 9.6 million deaths worldwide making it the 2nd biggest killer.
      3. Top 3 nations - Australia (1), The Netherlands (2), Germany (3).
      4. Bottom 3 nations - Saudi Arabia, Romania and Egypt.
    3. India is ranked 17th position among 100 countries in Startup Ecosystem Ranking for 2019 released by StartupBlink, Improving from 37th place last year.
      1. Top 5 - USA (1), UK (2), Canada (3), Israel (4), Australia (5).
      2. China was ranked 27th.
      3. Bangalore, New Delhi, and Mumbai were the top cities in Indian startup ecosystem.
    4. Indian-American scientist and social activist Sree Sreenath inducted into Cleveland International Hall of fame for his contribution in applications in systems biology, global issues, and sustainable development.
    5. UAE Cabinet adopted National Artificial Intelligence Strategy 2031, aimed at positioning UAE as a global leader in artificial intelligence by 2031 and to develop an integrated system that employs artificial intelligence in vital areas in the country.
    6. USA announced that all buyers of Iranian oil will have to end their imports shortly or face sanctions, terminating sanctions waivers USA granted to some importers of Iranian oil in late 2018.
      1. It will trigger about 3 % rise in crude prices.
      2. In November 2018, US reimposed sanctions on exports of Iranian oil after President Trump unilaterally pulled out of a 2015 nuclear accord between Iran and six world powers.
      3. USA, however, granted Iran’s eight main buyers of oil waivers to sanctions that allowed them limited purchases for six months. They were China, India, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Turkey, Italy and Greece.
      4. The current move of ending the sanction waivers will cause oil price hike in concerned nations.
    7. Sri Lankan Government enforced a nationwide state of emergency, after suicide bomb blasts at churches and luxury hotels on occasion of Easter, which killed over 300 people.
    8. London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) announced creation of the Amartya Sen Chair in Inequality Studies, in honour of India-born economist, philosopher and Nobel laureate, who was Professor of Economics at LSE from 1971-82.
      1. Holder of Amartya Sen Chair in Inequality Studies will also serve as Director of the International Inequalities Institute (III), LSE’s flagship initiative focused on studying and challenging one of the most pressing issues of our time.
    9. Services team won 2019 Santosh Trophy Football Title, defeating Punjab. This is sixth time Services has won Santosh Trophy.
    10. Noted Actor Sunny Deol and Former cricketer Gautam Gambhir Joined Bharatiya Janata Party, amid ongoing Lok Sabha Elections 2019.
  10. Apr 21, 2019
    1. Government increased authorised capital of State-owned Allahabad Bank to 8,000 crores (From 3000 Initially). It will help enable bank to raise further fund up to a maximum ceiling of Rs 8,000 crores.
    2. According to report by Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML), excess reserves held by RBI are be up to Rs.3 lakh crore ($43 billion), including excess capital in contingency reserves and revaluation reserves.
      1. Bimal Jalan committee on appropriate capital reserves for RBI was likely to identify this excess buffer. The committee was set up in December-end.
    3. Syndicate Bank and PSU BEML Limited (Bharat Earth Movers Limited) signed an agreement for financing Earth Moving and Construction EquipmentS, manufactured by BEML. Under this, customers will be provided loans in range 20 Lakh - 3 crores and preferential pricing by Syndicate Bank.
    4. India Post collaborated with IT Firm Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) for digitizing of 1.5 lakh post offices in India, creating World’s Biggest EPostal Network and largest SAP implementations worldwide.
    5. Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) issued guidelines for Candida auris, multi-drug resistant yeast that causes fatal invasive infections. C. auris is an uncommon fungus that can cause serious bloodstream, wound and ear infections. As per ICMR guidelines, There is no method for entire curability due to variation of vulnerability from patient to patient.
    6. NASA revealed that Mercury, the smallest planet in the solar system has a massive solid inner core, based on data by Spacecraft MESSENGER that crashed in 2015 . New mission is on its way to Mercury, named ‘BepiColombo‘, as joint mission by European Space Agency (ESA) and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).
    7. A new species of East Asian birds ‘Horsfield’s Bronze Cuckoo’ (Chalcites basalis) spotted in Andaman And Nicobar Islands. Its a native of Australia and New Guinea, measuring roughly 15 cm and weighs 22 g.
    8. Indian and the US navies conducted joint submarine hunting exercise near Diego Garcia in Indian Ocean.
    9. MOU signed between Ministry of AYUSH and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), for cooperation in research and education in areas of traditional systems of medicine and its integration with modern science.
      1. CSIR jointly with Department of AYUSH (now Ministry) had earlier developed Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL), a proprietary database on Indian systems of medicine for preventing bio-piracy and misappropriation of our traditional knowledge.
      2. Under the new MoU, both organizations shall jointly endeavor to pursue :  R&D covering fundamental research; AYUSH specific diagnostic tools; linking microbiome, gene expression and prakriti; multi-ingredient herbal formulations, including their standardization; exploring modern scientific methods for integration with traditional Indian Systems of Medicine (ISM); linking disease signatures; etc.
    10. Malayalam film Bhayanakam (Fear) directed by Jayaraj won best cinematography award at Beijing International Film Festival. It had also won best cinematography award at 65th National Film Awards.
    11. IT Firm Tech Mahindra partnered with San Francisco-based i2Chain Inc., to offer a blockchain-based cybersecurity application to customers which provides information owners with an unprecedented level of control.
    12. Bombay Stock Exchnage (BSE) signed MoU with Network Intelligence, to provide cybersecurity services to its members in line with cybersecurity framework set by SEBI. . Network Intelligence will be using its own developed platform BlueScope to offer 24x7 cybersecurity operations to the members.
    13. SBI General Insurance launched cyber defence insurance product, to protect businesses from financial and reputational losses due to cyber attacks, designed to protect against major insurable cyber exposures.
    14. Bajaj Allianz General Insurance and Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance jointly launched their first product 'Total Health Secure Goal', as combination of two existing plans - Health Guard policy by Bajaj Allianz General Insurance, and iSecure from Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance.
    15. 2019 Monte-Carlo Masters Men's Tennis Title -
      1. Singles - Fabio Fognini (Italy), becoming first Italian to win Monte-Carlo Masters in over 50 years. He defeated Dušan Lajović (Serbia).
      2. Doubles - Croatia's Nikola Mektić AND Croatia Franko Škugor
    16. Apr 21 - World Creativity and Innovation Day (WCID). Apr 21 is also marked as Civil Services Day in India, which was not observed due to ongoing Lok Sabha elections 2019.
  11. Apr 20, 2019
    1. General Conferences (Apr 11 - 20, 2019) -
      1. India's first-of-its-kind 'Voter Park' inaugurated in Gurugram (Haryana), aimed at increasing voter awareness and educating people about electoral process.
      2. 8th edition of Home Expo India 2019 opened at India Expo Centre and Mart, Greater Noida (UP).
      3. Project Kannamma initiative launched by Rotary Club of Madras North to provide biodegradable sanitary napkins under the brand name, “Aavaram” to the girl students in government schools of Tamil Nadu.
      4. 4th Resilient Cities Asia-Pacific Congress 2019 organised by International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) in New Delhi. It aims to find innovative solutions to build resilience to climate change at sub-national level.
      5. India and Netherlands held Joint foreign office consultations held in New Delhi. India welcomed participation of Netherlands as partner country for 25th edition of CII-DST Tech Summit scheduled to be held in New Delhi in October 2019.
      6. World Allergy Week observed worldwide between 7th to 13th of April, 2019, with theme The Global Problem of Food Allergy.
      7. 21st ASEAN-India Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM) held at New Delhi to improve cooperation in maritime sector.
      8. Nationla Fire Service Week observed between 14th - 20th April, observed Since 1968. 2019 theme is Fire Prevention is better than Fire Fighting.
    2. Visits from India (Apr 11 - 20, 2019) -
      1. Navy Chief Sunil Lanba visited Thailand.
    3. India’s Haj Quota has been increased by Saudi Arabia, by about 25,000, raising number to 2 lakh from 1.75 lakh. Also, total 2,340 Muslim women from India will go for Haj without ‘Mehram’ or male companion. This year, GST on Haj pilgrimage has been reduced from 18 % to 5 %.
    4. Airtel Payments Bank partnered with Bharti AXA General Insurance for a two-wheeler insurance product, available on My Airtel App and over 40,000 Airtel Payments Bank contact points.
    5. Income tax department altered method for taxing multinational companies (MNCs) and digital firms with permanent establishment in India -
      1. CBDT Committee stated that MNCs that are suffering global losses or a global profit margin of less than 2% and have their operations in India will be considered to have made a profit of 2% of Indian revenue and will be taxed accordingly.
    6. Sunil Kumar Gautam honored with ‘Pandit Govind Ballabh Pant Award‘ for 2018-19 by Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPR&D), for his book titled ‘Samvidhan Kavya‘, as Poetic representation of Indian Constitution.
    7. Asian Tea Alliance (ATA) has been opened in Guizhou (China). Its union of five tea-growing and consuming countries, aimed at boosting tea trade, cultural and technical exchanges as well as global promotion of tea. Alliance was constituted with Indian Tea Association, Indonesian tea Marketing Association, China tea marketing Association, Sri Lanka Tea Board and Tea Association.
    8. Retail arm of Reliance Industries, Reliance Retail became India’s first retail company to cross the Rs.1 lakh crore annual revenue, with revenue for 2018-19 being INR 1,30,556.
    9. UN labour agency International Labour Organisation (ILO) in its report The Safety and the Health at the Heart of the Future of Work- Building on 100 years of Experience termed Bhopal Gas Tragedy as one of world’s ‘major industrial accident’, which killed over 15,000 people due to result of at least 30 tons of highly toxic Methyl Isocyanate (MIC) gas leak in Union Carbide pesticide plant in Bhopal in 1984.
    10. Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDAI) granted Indiabulls Group the R1 licence for general insurance business..
    11. Indian Navy launched guided missile destroyer 'Imphal' (built by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Mumbai), as 3rd third ship to be launched under Project 15B.
      1. Warships built under Project 15B project are propelled by four gas turbines to achieve speed in excess of 30 knots. They have a length of 163 metres and 17.4 metres at beam and a displacement of 7.300 tonnes.
    12. Malaysia resumed a China-backed rail link project,  after Chinese contractor agreed to cut the construction cost by one third to 10.6 billion USD, now costing approx $33.8 billion.
      1. Project is 40 % owned by Malasysia government, will be developed with same consortium partners, Malaysian developer Iskandar Waterfront Holdings and China Railway Engineering Corp. 
      2. It was initiated by the indebted 1MDB state investment fund in 2011 but it later sold a 60 percent stake to the consortium.]
    13. CBSE will allow differently abled students to use magnifying glasses and portable video magnifiers during Class X final examination, from 2020, for questions having visual inputs. 
  12. Apr 19, 2019
    1. 2nd Edition of Indian Navy-Vietnam Peoples’ Navy Bilateral Exercise (IN – VPN BILAT EX) held at Cam Ranh Bay (Vietnam).
    2. Export Import Bank of India (Exim Bank) provided soft loans of USD 266.60 million to Rwanda for various projects.
      1. USD 100 million for financing development of two SEZs (Special Economic Zones) and expansion of the Kigali SEZ in Rwanda.
      2. USD 100 million for financing three agriculture project schemes --Warufu Multipurpose Project,Mugesera Irrigation Project andNyamukana Irrigation Project.
      3. USD 66.60 million will be funded for Base-Butaro-Kidaho Road Project.
    3. Insurance Firm Cholamandalam MS General Insurance Company Limited received ISO 31000:2018 certification by TUV India, for applying risk management system which conforms to prescribed standards.
    4. UK Royal Society elected 51 eminent scientists as Fellows of Royal Society. Selected Indians / PIOs -
      1. Yusuf Hamied (Cipla pharmaceuticals chairman)
      2. Gurdyal Besra (Professor at University of Birmingham)
      3. Manjul Bhargava (American-Canadian mathematician)
      4. Anant Parekh (Oxford University)
      5. Akshay Venkatesh (Australian Mathematician)
      6. Gagandeep Kang (Christian Medical College, Vellore). She is also First Indian woman scientist to be selected as a fellow of UK’s Royal Society.
    5. Scientists from University of San Juan (Argentina) discovered a site containing fossils of nearly a dozen dinosaurs. It is 220 million year old and belonging to an unknown era.
    6. Apr 19, 2019 is observed as Good Friday (also known as Holy Friday or Black Friday). It is observed every year in honor and remembrance of Jesus’s Crucifixion and Christians believe Jesus was crucified on Good Friday and rose again three days later which is marked as Easter.
      1. Apr 19 is also observed as World Liver Day.
    7. India and France will conduct their Joint naval exercise ‘Varuna’ off Goa coast in May 2019. Varuna is a top-level naval exercise, with intensive dual carrier task group operations and anti-submarine warfare manoeuvres.
    8. US Department of Justice released special counsel Robert Mueller’s report, which looks into alleged Russian collusion in 2016 Presidential elections which saw incumbent US President Donald Trump rise to power. Report found Russian government-sponsored efforts to illegally interfere with 2016 presidential elections in US, but did not find that the Trump campaign or other Americans colluded in those schemes.
    9. As per a report submitted by Rajasthan forest department following directive of National Green Tribunal (NGT), there are about 150 Great Indian Bustards (GIBs) in Jaisalmer area of Desert National Park in Thar. The species is marked Critically Endangered by IUCN.
    10. NASA's Antares rocket lifted off to International Space Station, carrying the Cygnus Cargo Spacecraft. The Spacecraft carried about 7,600 pounds of supplies and scientific experiments to station.
    11. NASA announced that astronaut Christina Koch is going to have her mission on International Space Station (ISS) extended to 328 days. She would set a record for longest single spaceflight by a woman.
      1. Christina Koch reached ISS on March 14, 2019. Now her stays is extended to February 2020. On completing it, she will break record for single longest spaceflight by a woman of 288 days set by retired astronaut Peggy Whitson in 2016-17 (288 Days).
  13. Apr 18, 2019
    1. Apr 18 - World Heritage Day. 2019 theme is Rural Landscapes.
      1. 2019 International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) Scientific Symposium on Rural heritage will be held at Marrakesh, Morocco in October 2019.
      2. On 18 April 1982 on occasion of a symposium organised by ICOMOS in Tunisia, it was suggested to observe the “International Day for Monuments and Sites” simultaneously throughout world.
    2. India edition of first biography of Apple CEO Tim Cook, ‘Tim Cook: The Genius Who Took Apple to the Next Level’, has been released.
    3. World Press Freedom Index 2019 report by Reporters Without Borders  -
      1. Norway topped the index in third consecutive year. Top 5 - Norway (1), Finland (2), Sweden (3), Netherlands (4), Denmark (5)
      2. Bottom 5 -    Vietnam (176th), China (177th), Eritrea (178th), North Korea (179th), Turkmenistan (180th)
      3. India drops by two positions (138th rank in 2018) to 140th in 2019 (out of 180 countries).
      4. Two African countries Ethiopia and Gambia have significantly improved their ranking from 150th to 110th and 122nd to 92nd respectively as compared to 2018.
      5. Neighbours - China (177th), Bangladesh (150), Pakistan (142), Sri Lanka (126th).
    4. Bank of Baroda and Srei Equipment Finance Ltd collaborated to offer joint loans for infrastructure equipment. Sourcing of loans will be facilitated through iQuippo, a Kanoria Foundation initiative.
    5. Noted Author Salman Rushdie’s new novel Quichotte will be released in August 2019. It is inspired by classic “Don Quixote” and is he story of an ageing travelling salesman who falls in love with a TV star and sets off to drive across America on a quest to prove himself worthy of her.
    6. Nepal launched its first satellite NepaliSat-1 into space, from USA. Two Nepali scientists, Aabhas Maskey and Hariram Shrestha, studying at Japanese Kyushu Institute of Technology, developed it under BIRDS project of their institute. NepaliSat-1 is a low orbit satellite which will be in 400-km distance from Earth's surface.
    7. Sri Lanka launched its first satellite ‘Raavana-1’ into space from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s East Shore (USA). It weighs around 1.05 kg, with lifespan of 1.5 years. It was built at Kyushu Institute of Technology in Japan by two Sri Lankan research engineers.
    8. Saudi Arabia will host G20 summit in November 2020 in its capital Riyadh, as first G20 summit to be hosted in any of Arab nations. 2018 G20 meeting was held in Buenos Aires (Argentina).
    9. CRISIL Ltd will transfer its rating business to its proposed new wholly-owned subsidiary, to comply with SEBI norms issued in 2018. SEBI had modified its regulations for credit rating agencies and mandated segregation of rating and non-ratings businesses of credit-rating agencies.
    10. Cash-strapped Airline Jet Airways suspended all its domestic and international flights indefinitely, amid cash crunch. It has put 20000 jobs with JetAirways at Stake. Founder Chairman Naresh Goyal had earlier resigned from Board of Jet Airways.
    11. 150 Indian peacekeepers serving with UN Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) were honoured with medals of honour by the United Nations for their dedicated service and sacrifice.
      1. Till Now, over 200,000 Indian Personnel have served under various peacekeeping missions of UN and 168 Indian military personnel have lost their lives under UN flag.
    12. World Health Organisation (WHO) released new recommendations on 10 ways through which countries can use digital health technology which is accessible via mobile phones, tablets and computers to improve people’s health and essential services. Guideline underlines the importance of reaching vulnerable populations and ensuring that digital health does not endanger them in any way.
    13. Ministry of Home Affairs suspended LoC trade in Jammu & Kashmir, Between Indian Kashmir and Pakistan Occupied Kashmir, amid reports that Cross LoC trade routes are being misused by the Pakistan based elements for funnelling illegal weapons, narcotics and fake currency etc.
      1. LoC trade is meant to facilitate exchange of goods of common use between local populations across the LoC in Jammu & Kashmir. It is based on Barter system and zero duty basis.
    14. American researchers discovered a new method to build better performing Lithium-ion batteries that can be charged much quickly.
      1. Lithium-ion battery charges and discharges as lithium ions move between two electrodes, called anode and cathode. In a traditional lithium-ion battery, anode is made of graphite and cathode of lithium cobalt oxide. Researchers improved performance of lithium-ion battery by substituting cobalt oxide with vanadium disulfide (VS2).
    15. Iran’s Parliament approved a bill labelling U.S. forces in the Middle East as terrorist groups, a few days after U.S. designation of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard as terrorist organisation formally took effect. IRGC’s designation as a terrorist group by US was first-ever designation for a Military division of another Nation.
    16. Time 100 Most Influential Peoples' List 2019 -
      1. Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani, public-interest litigators Arundhati Katju and Menaka Guruswamy are Indians on the List. Arundhati Katju and Menaka Guruswamy spearheaded a historic legal battle for LGBTQ rights in India.
      2. Anand Mahindra (chairman of Mahindra Group) wrote profile of Mukesh Ambani for TIME 100 influential people. Actress Priyanka Chopra wrote profile for ArundhatiKatju and Guruswamy.
      3. List also includes Indian-American comedian and TV host Hasan Minhaj. It also Includes Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan.
    17. Delhi Metro Started Operaing trains on Solar Power, on Commencement of supply of 27 MW power from Madhya Pradesh-based Rewa Solar Power Project. DMRC aims to become world's first 100 % Solar Power Run Metro System.
    18. NASA found long sought evidence of universe's earliest molecule, the helium hydride ion. Scientists found it in NGC 7027, a planetary nebula (a remnant of a Sun-like star) located 3,000 light-years away. NASA used its Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) to detect the primordial molecule.
      1. Scientists suspected that, around 100,000 years after big bang, helium and hydrogen combined to form the first molecule, helium hydride. That helped the universe begin to cool and led to the formation of stars. But, despite decades of searching, scientists could never locate helium hydride in space - until now.
    19. Researchers at IIT Roorkee found a new method to detect breast and ovarian cancer which is responsible for one-fifth of the cancer-related death across world. As opposed to traditional method using blood samples, researchers used whole saliva as a body fluid for early detection of breast and ovarian cancers.
    20. Face of Disasters 2019 report released by the Sustainable Environment and Ecological Development Society (SEEDS), highlighting significant changes in climatic conditions across India. Extreme floods in unexpected locations during the Monsoons are fast becoming a new normal in India.
  14. Apr 17, 2019
    1. Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) issued guidelines for monetisation of non-core assets of Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs) and immovable enemy properties.
      1. An inter-ministerial group chaired by DIPAM secretary will identify non-core assets of CPSEs, and final call will be taken by Finance minister-headed panel.
      2. After panel approves assets for monetisation, it should be completed within 12 months from date of approval, failing which finance ministry may restrict budgetary allocations to CPSEs.
    2. Saturn's largest moon Titan has small liquid lakes that run more than 100 metres deep, perched atop hills and filled with methane, scientists have found using data from NASA's Cassini spacecraft.
      1. Titan is only planetary body in our solar system other than Earth known to have stable liquid on its surface.
      2. Titan's hydrologic cycle works similarly to Earth's - with one major difference. Instead of water evaporating from seas, forming clouds and rain, Titan does it all with methane and ethane.
      3. Scientists earlier knew that much larger northern seas are filled with methane, but finding smaller northern lakes filled mostly with methane was a surprise.
      4. Cassini arrived in Saturn system in 2004 and ended its mission in 2017 by deliberately plunging into Saturn's atmosphere. It mapped more than 1.6 million square kilometers of liquid lakes and seas on Titan's surface.
    3. April 17 - World Haemophilia Day, marks birthday of Frank Schnabel who established World Federation of Haemophilia in 1963. Haemophilia is a medical condition in which ability of blood to clot is severely reduced. As a result, even a minor injury can cause severe bleeding.
      1. It is mostly inherited and is attributed to the defect in X chromosome.
      2. If a girl is born with one defective X chromosome, her other X chromosome can compensate for it. As a result, she will be a carrier of haemophilia but she herself will not suffer from It. However, boys do not have second X chromosome to compensate for it. Hence he will suffer from haemophilia. That's why it is more common among men.
      3. Britain’s Queen Victoria is the world’s most widely known carrier of haemophilia.
      4. There were over 1.96 lakh persons living with haemophilia across world in 2017, with India having nearly 19,000.
    4. Researchers from Tel Aviv University(Israel) have printed world’s first 3D vascularised engineered heart using a patient’s own cells and biological materials. During this, patient-specific biological materials served as bio-inks (substances made of sugars and proteins that can be used for 3D printing of complex tissue models).
      1. Even though people had managed to 3D-print structure of a heart in the past, but those attempts were not with cells or with blood vessels.
      2. The heart produced now by researchers is about the size of a rabbit’s.
      3. This underlines potential for engineering personalized tissue and organ replacement in the future.
      4. The challenge now is to teach the printed hearts “to behave” like real ones.
    5. Japan Based Firm Sony launched taxi-hailing service in Tokyo (Japan) named S.Ride, which uses artificial intelligence (AI) technology to predict where demand will be highest and dispatch drivers accordingly. S in S.Ride stand for simple, smart, and speedy.
    6. Person of Indian Origin (PIO) Keshav Raghvan will lead team CubeSat to be sent to space by NASA. CubeSat is a mini research satellite to detect cosmic rays, flown into space on future missions.
      1. Team's CubeSat BLAST (Bouchet Low-Earth Alpha/Beta Space Telescope) is named for physicist Edward A Bouchet, the first African American to receive a PhD in America.
      2. BLAST will contribute to ongoing search for origins and nature of cosmic rays, to provide an insight into origins of universe.
      3. CubeSats are miniature satellites intended as a standard, inexpensive design that can easily fit alongside larger satellites aboard launch vehicles. CubeSats are built from a modular structure of 10x10x10cm cubes and feature a wide variety of commercially available off-the-shelf components, designed to fit the structure from various manufacturers.
      4. NASA Ames launched its first CubeSat, GeneSat, in December 2006.  Since then Ames has launched 16 CubeSat spacecraft varying in size from 1U to 3U with an additional 12 CubeSats in development or awaiting launch.
    7. Google and Apple blocked access to popular Chinese video app 'TikTok' on their app stores following refusal of Madras High Court to lift ban imposed on it in early April 2019.
      1. Court appointed Arvind P Datar as amicus curiae to assist Court in upcoming proceedings related to concerned ban.
      2. Earlier on April 3, 2019, Madras HC asked Government to ban TikTok, claiming it encouraged pornography and made child users vulnerable to sexual offenders. It came after an individual filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) calling for a ban.
    8. RBI issued Rs 50 denomination banknotes signed by current Governor Shaktikanta Das. The design of these notes is similar in all respects to Rs 50 banknotes in Mahatma Gandhi new series.
      1. It bears motif of ‘Hampi with Chariot’ on the reverse that depicts India’s cultural heritage.
      2. It has the Ashoka pillar emblem on the right side of the obverse and bears year of printing on the reverse side.
      3. Note is fluorescent blue in colour. It has Width 135 mm AND Height 66 mm.
    9. US President Donald Trump vetoed a bill passed by Congress to end US military assistance in Saudi Arabia-led war in Yemen. The veto, which is 2nd in Trump's presidency, was expected. He issued his first veto in March on a legislation related to immigration.
      1. Earlier in April 19, Congress had voted for first time to invoke the War Powers Resolution to try and stop US involvement in a foreign conflict. 
    10. Canara Bank successfully rolled out major new functionality to support EMV card acquiring across its ATM network and Aadhaar Authentication. It has been announced by ACI Worldwide, global provider of real-time electronic payment and banking solutions.
      1. EMV shift is aimed at reducing lost and stolen card fraud and making counterfeit card fraud more difficult. RBI had set a deadline of December 31, 2018 for switch, mandating use of an embedded chip to replace the traditional magnetic stripe card.
    11. CCI (Competition Commission of India) Approved Bandhan Bank's acquisition of Gruh Finance, to enhance and strenthen its portfolio.
      1. Gruh Finance is low-cost arm of HDFC Group. After the merger, HDFC Sought to take 14.96 % state in Bandhan Bank. The same has been limited by RBI hold 9.9%. 9.9 % is maximum a non-banking finance company can own in a private bank.
    12. International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank Jointly launched a private blockchain with a pseudo-token, called “Learning Coin”. Its only accessible within IMF and World Bank, with a purpose to teach relevant individuals within organizations about blockchain.
    13. Researchers at San Diego State University (USA), detected new Neptune-to-Saturn size planet orbiting between two previously known planets Kepler-47b and Kepler-47c, using data from NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope. This new planet named as Kepler-47d. Its 7 times larger than Earth and also largest of 3 planets in Kepler-47 circumbinary system.
      1. Kepler-47 system is approximately 3.5 billion-years-old and it is 3,340 light years away in the direction of the constellation Cygnus.
      2. 3 Known planets in Kepler-47 are orbiting two suns.
    14. US Department of Interior inducted its very first Indian, Sanjay Kumar, Secretary General of World Geospatial Industry Council (WGIC), to its National Geospatial Advisory Committee (NGAC). Kumar first joined the committee as a representative of the WGIC.
      1. WGIC was launched on 1st August, 2018 at 8th Session of the UN-GGIM, at UN HQ in New York.
    15. ETMONEY integrated with UPI as a payment method, as a market first. It will simplify mutual fund payment for ETMONEY users.
    16. Bank of Maharashtra (BoM) partnered with M1Xchange Trade Receivables Discounting System (TReDS) platform for MSME bill discounting. 
      1. TReDS is a digital platform to support MSMEs to get their bills financed at a competitive rate through an auction where multiple registered financiers can participate. It aims to facilitate smooth flow of liquidity in system and make finance available at a competitive rate.
    17. National Green Tribunal (NGT) formed a Central Monitoring Committee to prepare and enforce a national plan to make over 350 river stretches pollution free across country. It will also coordinate with River Rejuvenation Committees of states and oversee execution of action plans.
    18. Successful birth of a baby using DNA from three people (2 Female, 1 Male) has been reported in Greece.
      1. A similar DNA switching technique was adopted in Mexico in 2016 to avoid transmission of a mother’s hereditary illness to her child.
      2. But this case is unique owing to the fact that for the first time an IVF (in vitro fertilization) technique using DNA from three people has been deployed to allow a mother otherwise unable to conceive to have a child.
    19. Bibhu Kalyan Nayak became first Indian to be appointed Chair of International Hockey Federation (FIH) Health and Safety Committee by world governing body of Hockey.
    20. Apr 17 is observed as Mujibnagar Day in Neighbouring Nation Bangladesh, with tributes to Father of Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. It marks formation of First provincial government of newly formed Bangladesh in 1971.
  15. Apr 16, 2019
    1. Cabinet Approvals (Apr 16, 2019) -
      1. General Approvals -
        1. Approved creation of one post of Deputy Comptroller & Auditor General (Coordination, Communication and Information System) in Pay Level-17 (by abolishing one STS level post) in Office of the Comptroller & Auditor General of India.
        2. Approved ongoing GSLV continuation programme Phase-4 consisting of five GSLV flights during the period 2021-2024 GSLV Programme - Phase 4 will enable launch of 2 tonne class of satellites for Geo-imaging, Navigation, Data Relay Communication and Space Sciences. 
          1. Fund requirement is Rs. 2729.13 Crores.
          2. It will meet launch requirement of satellites for providing critical Satellite Navigation Services, Data Relay Communication for supporting Indian Human spaceflight programme and next interplanetary mission to Mars. 
      2. MOUs -
        1. Brazil - Strengthen ties to work out future agenda for collaboration for innovation in Science & Technology diplomacy to evolve a concrete strategic plan in area of biotechnology education, training and research.
        2. South Korea - Joint issue os Postage Stamps on the theme "Queen Hur Hwang-ok of Korea".
        3. Denmark - Sector cooperation in the field of Renewable Energy with a focus on Offshore Wind Energy and a Letter of Intent to establish an Indo-Danish Centreof Excellence for renewable energy in India.
        4. Bolivia - Cooperation in Traditional Systems of Medicine and Homoeopathy, Geology and Mineral Resources.
        5. Cambodia - Cooperation in field of Communications.
      3. CCEA Approvals -
        1. Approved proposal of Department of fertilisers to extend duration of New Urea Policy 2015 from April 1, 2019 till further orders. It would facilitate in continuation of operations of urea plants and ensure regular supply of urea to the farmers.
    2. United Arab Emirates (UAE) will host world’s leading Artificial Intelligence (AI) Summit - AIE from April 30 to May 1, 2019. Its aim is to empower global dialogue on the future of government, business and society.
    3. MoU signed by Tata Trusts and Microsoft India for jointly rejuvenating handloom clusters in the eastern and north-eastern parts of India in order to build a digitally-inclusive society. Under Project ‘ReWeave’, Microsoft will help to preserve traditional weaving forms by upskilling workers, designing and marketing products, and creating sustainable livelihood options.
    4. 3rd edition of Joint Naval Exercise of India and Australia AUSINDEX held off the coast of Vishakhapatnam (Andhra Pradesh).
    5. DRDO Tested Long range sub sonic cruise missile Nirbhay, developed by Bengaluru based Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE). It is India’s first indigenously designed and developed long-range cruise missile. This Nuclear capable missile can be equipped with 300kg warhead and has range of 1000s.
    6. IDBI Bank launched ‘NRI-Insta Online’ account opening process for NRIs residing in Financial Action Task Force (FATF) member countries to open an account without visiting branch or submitting paper documents.
      1. FATF is an inter-governmental body founded in 1989, which sets standards to promote successful implementation of legal, regulatory and operational measures to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.
    7. Pulitzer Prize 2019 -
      1. Winners -
        1. Journalism -
          1. Public Service - The Sun-Sentinel
          2. Breaking News Reporting - Staff of Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
          3. Investigative Reporting - Matt Hamilton, Harriet Ryan and Paul Pringle of Los Angeles Times
          4. Explanatory Reporting - David Barstow, Susanne Craig and Russ Buettner of The New York Times
          5. Local Reporting - The Advocate staff
          6. National Reporting - Staff of The Wall Street Journal
          7. International Reporting - Maggie Michael, Maad al-Zikry and Nariman El-Mofty of The Associated Press AND Staff of Reuters, with notable contributions from Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo (who recently also won 2019 UNESCO/Guillermo Cano Press Freedom Prize)
          8. Feature Writing - Hannah Dreier of ProPublica
          9. Commentary - Tony Messenger of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
          10. Criticism - Carlos Lozada of The Washington Post
          11. Editorial Writing - Brent Staples of The New York Times
          12. Editorial Cartooning - Darrin Bell (freelancer)
          13. Breaking News Photography - Photography Staff of Reuters
          14. Feature Photography - Lorenzo Tugnoli of The Washington Post
        2. Letters, Drama, and Music -
          1. Fiction - The Overstory by Richard Powers
          2. Drama - Fairview by Jackie Sibblies Drury
          3. History - Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom by David W. Blight
          4. Biography or Autobiography - The New Negro: The Life of Alain Locke by Jeffrey C. Stewart
          5. Poetry - Be With by Forrest Gander
          6. Music - Prism by Ellen Reid
          7. General Nonfiction - Amity and Prosperity: One Family and the Fracturing of America by Eliza Griswold (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
        3. Special Awards and Citations -
          1. Aretha Franklin For her indelible contribution to American music and culture
          2. Capital Gazette, Annapolis, Md.
      2. About Pulitzer Prizes -
        1. Given for achievements in newspaper, magazine and online journalism, literature, and musical composition in USA.
        2. Established in 1917 by provisions in will of American (Hungarian-born) Joseph Pulitzer who had made his fortune as a newspaper publisher and is administered by Columbia University in New York City.
    8. NASA announced that SpaceX will fly its Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) planetary-defence mission, with total launch cost approx $69 million. DART is a planned space probe that will demonstrate kinetic effects of crashing an impactor spacecraft into an asteroid moon for planetary defense purposes.
      1. The mission is intended to test whether a spacecraft impact could successfully deflect an asteroid on a collision course with Earth.
      2. DART will be will launched in June 2021. It will slam into “Didymoon,” 540-foot-wide (165 meters) satellite of near-Earth asteroid Didymos which is located at about 4 million miles from Eart in October 2022.
      3. Scientists will measure change in Didymoon’s orbit around the asteroid.
      4. Scientists hope to move it by just a fraction of a per cent off its path, which is enough to deflect any future asteroids off course since Didymos poses no threat to Earth.
    9. Ministry of External Affairs has set up an Indo-Pacific division in the foreign office, to give a coherent architecture to Indo-Pacific policy, which was articulated by PM Narendra Modi at the Shangri-La Dialogue in 2018. Indo-Pacific Wing is currently headed by joint secretary Vikram Doraiswami. The division will integrate the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), Asean region and the Quad to the Indo-Pacific table.
    10. Three teams from India won awards at NASA’s annual Human Exploration Rover Challenge which invites high school and college students to build and test roving vehicles for future missions to Moon, Mars and beyond.
      1. Team from KIET Group of Institutions in Ghaziabad (Uttar Pradesh) won the “AIAA Neil Armstrong Best Design Award”, which recognises systems best designed to meet Rover Challenge performance requirements.
      2. Team from Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management and Engineering from Mumbai (Maharashtra), won “Frank Joe Sexton Memorial Pit Crew Award” for ingenuity and persistence in overcoming problems during race as well as “System Safety Challenge Award”.
      3. Team from Lovely Professional University in Phagwara (Punjab) won “STEM Engagement Award”, presented to the team that best-informed others about rocketry and other space-related topics.
    11. India became net importer of steel during FY 2018-19, For the first time in 3 years. Indian Steel exports fell by 34 % to 6.36 million tonnes in FY 2018-19. Indian Steel Imports During 2018-19 rose 4.7 % to 7.84 million tonnes.
    12. RBI arm Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology (IDRBT) launched a 5G Use Cases Lab for banking and financial sector. 5G technology, along with blockchain, will be progressively adopted by banks.
      1. Department Of Telecommunications had already launched test beds for 5G use in the academia in Hyderabad, Chennai and Bangalore to develop 5G for Indian use.
    13. Supreme Court banned all mining activities along the Kaziranga National Park and catchment area of rivers originating in Karbi Anglong Hills in Assam.
    14. Government approved proposal of Madhya Pradesh Government, to change name of a village in Madhya Pradesh from ‘Durjanpur‘ to ‘Shivdham’, in Katni District of Madhya Pradesh.
    15. FC Goa (nicknamed The Guard) won 2nd edition of Hero Super Cup 2019 Football title, beating Chennaiyin FC at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar.
    16. Indian Coast Guard vessel Veera has been commissioned into service. Its 3rd in series of new generation Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV), built by Larsen & Toubro Ltd.
    17. Researchers at University of California (USA) created a 3D-printed device that that can produce electricity from falling snow. The device is small, inexpensive and does not need batteries, termed as snow-based triboelectric nanogenerator or snow TENG. It generates charge through static electricity and produces energy from electron-exchange.
    18. NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) discovered an Earth-sized planet, HD 21749b and a “sub-Neptune” world, revolving around star HD 21749. It lies 53 light-years from Earth. HD 21749b is about 23 times heavier and 2.7 times wider than Earth. Its temperature is mostly around 150 degrees Celsius.
    19. Google launched its first African artificial Intelligence (AI) laboratory in Accra, capital city of Ghana, to tackle Africa’s challenges.
    20. As per a report, United Nations owes India USD 38 million, highest it has to pay to any country, for peacekeeping operations as of March 2019. total amount payable to countries for peacekeeping missions was USD 265 million. Of this, UN owes USD 38 million to India, followed by Rwanda (USD 31 million), Pakistan (USD 28 million), Bangladesh (USD 25 million) and Nepal (USD 23 million).
    21. Asian Development Bank committed to provide USD 3 billion in sovereign loans to India in 2018, highest level of assistance since operations began in India in 1986, as per ADB annual report.
  16. Apr 15, 2019
    1. US designated Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a Foreign Terrorist Organization. This is first time that a state military entity has been designated as a terror group.
      1. Iran has two parallel land forces with some integration at the command level: the regular Artesh (Army), and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, also known as the Sepaah (IRGC). IRGC strength is approx 125000.
    2. World’s largest airplane completed its first test flight, built by Stratolaunch (USA) in eight years. Stratolaunch was founded in 2011 by the late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen.
      1. Its first flight duration was 2.5 hours at up to 5200 meter above sea level.
      2. The plane weighs about 227,000 kg and has the biggest wingspan ever built, measuring 118 meter from one end to the other. It can hold more than 113,000 kg of fuel.
      3. It is designed to carry nearly 250,000 kg between the two fuselages. It has 28 wheels.
      4. The plane is powered by six Pratt & Whitney engines, which were originally designed for Boeing 747s.
    3. Bhutan government sent bill for ratification of Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal (BBIN) initiative for road and rail connectivity to its upper senate, which aims at improving rail and road connectivity in the region. Agreement for BBIN Motor Vehicle Agreement was signed by four member nations in June 2015.
      1. Bangladesh, India, and Nepal ratified the pact and agreed to start its implementation among the three signatory countries, with Bhutan joining after it ratifies the agreement.
    4. My Circle App was launched by Bharti Airtel in collaboration with FICCI Ladies Organisation (FLO). It enables women to send SOS alerts to any five of their family or friends in 13 languages, as they face any problem or panic situation. SOS alert will send user’s location over SMS to five contacts.
    5. World’s first privately funded lunar Mission Beresheet crash landed on Moon. It had problems with main engine during its descent that left it unable to slow down in time before it smashed into lunar surface. Beresheet was an Israeli mission launched by a partnership between nonprofit SpaceIL and government-owned aerospace company Israel Aerospace Industries.
    6. India’s first exotic Bird Park ‘EsselWorld Bird Park’ launched by EsselWorld Leisure Pvt. Ltd. in Mumbai. It is home to over 500 exotic birds from more than 60 species of flying, terrestrial and aquatic birds and has 200 species of special plants and trees for the birds.
    7. India partnered with Japan and United Arab Emirates (UAE) to implement two projects in Africa. India will build a cancer hospital in Kenya in collaboration with Japan, while it will partner with UAE to set up an ICT centre in Ethiopia.
    8. Bajaj Finserv lending arm Bajaj Finance launched a unique proposition through its campaign #BijliOnEMI wherein customers buying air-conditioners on EMI can avail an Insta Credit loan in their Bajaj Finserv Wallet which they can use to pay their electricity bills on EMI. It is aimed to help customers finance high electricity bills that may arise due to extensive usage of conditioners during summer.
    9. China tested world's first armed amphibious drone boat which can be used in land assault operations and is capable of forming a combat triad with aerial drones and other drone ships. Built by Wuchang Shipbuilding Industry Group under China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC), its named Marine Lizard.
    10. Last known female member of Yangtze giant softshell turtle, aged 90 years old, died in Suzhou Zoo, China. Now, only three members of this species are left in world. It has been declared world’s most critically endangered turtle species.
    11. In Mariana Trench (Deepest part of Earth’s oceans, approximately 11,000 metres) of Western Pacific Ocean, scientists (from Ocean University in Qingdao, China and University of East Anglia in Norwich, England) discovered a unique hydrocarbon degrading oil-eating bacteria that can help in sustainable ways of cleaning up man-made oil spills.
      1. Hydrocarbons are organic compounds that are made of hydrogen and carbon atoms, and are found mostly in crude oil and natural gas.
    12. Life Insurance Corporation(LIC) has been given 12 years from RBI for cut down stake in IDBI Bank, which is currently at 51 %.
      1. IRDAI claimed that LIC can take up to 15 % stake in any bank, which can stretch up to 30 %. But in 2018, regulator authorised LIC to hold up to 51 % in IDBI Bank.
      2. After 12 years, LIC has to decrease stake in IDBI Bank to bring it down to 40 %.
    13. Assam’s Rongali Bihu Festival has began, also known as ‘Bohag Bihu’. It marks beginning of new Assamese calendar year.
      1. This festival is observed at almost same time as Baisakhi in Punjab, Poila Baisakh in Bengal, Puthandu in Tamil Nadu and Vishu in Kerala this year.
      2. In Assam, three Bihu festivals are celebrated in a year called as Rongali Bihu or Bohag Bihu, Bhogali (Magh Bihu) and Kangali (Kati Bihu) for marking the distinctive phase in the farming calendar.
    14. 2019 U.S. Men's Clay Court Tennis Championship -
      1. Singles - Christian Garín (Chile). Christian Garin became the first Chilean to win an ATP Tour title in 10 years.
      2. Doubles - Santiago Gonález (Mexico) AND Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi (Pakistan)
    15. 2019 Singapore Open (Badminton) -
      1. Men's Singles - Kento Momota (Japan). He defeated Anthony Sinisuka Ginting (Indonesia)
      2. Women's Singles - Tai Tzu-ying (Chinese Taipei). She defeated Nozomi Okuhara (Japan)
      3. Men's Doubles - Japan's Takeshi Kamura AND Keigo Sonoda
      4. Women's Doubles - Japan's Mayu Matsumoto AND Wakana Nagahara
      5. Mixed Doubles - Thailand's Dechapol Puavaranukroh AND Sapsiree Taerattanachai
    16. India’s Harsheel Dani defeated Mads Christophersen of Denmark to win 20th Victor Dutch International Badminton title at Wateringen (The Netherlands).
    17. Delhi High Court sought response from Cabinet Committee on Security on a plea seeking directions to remove dual control of Assam Rifles and bring it under Ministry of Defence.
      1. Assam Rifles which is oldest paramilitary force of India. Its administrative control lies with Home Ministry, while operational control is with Defence Ministry. Plea filed by alleges dual control as violation of rights of troopers of Assam Rifles.
      2. Plea filled by All India Assam Rifles Ex-Servicemen Welfare Association challenges Government (Allocation of Business) Rules 1961 saying that it places Assam Rifles under the head ‘Police’, which is arbitrary and unreasonable.
    18. Delhi High Court has ruled that Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) prevails over Bankruptcy Act and insolvency code when it comes to attachment of properties obtained as ‘proceeds of crime’.
      1. Enforcement Directorate (ED) had challenged orders of PMLA appellate tribunal on pleas of various banks. PMLA Tribunal held that third parties (banks in this case) have a superior claim over such properties.
      2. Delhi High Court stated that PMLA, Recovery of Debt and Bankruptcy Act (RDBA), Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Securities Interest (SARFAESI) Act and Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) must co-exist and be enforced in harmony.
    19. Cologne Boxing World Cup 2019 (Germany) -
      1. India finished with a haul of five medals (1 Gold, 2 Silver and 2 Bronze).
      2. Meena Kumari Maisnam (54kg) won Gold. Sakshi (57kg) and Pwilao Basumatary (64kg) won silver medals and Pinki Rani (51kg), Parveen (60kg) won bronze medals.
      3. Cologne Boxing World Cup was earlier known as Chemistry Cup.
    20. April 15 - Himachal Day. It is being observed since 1948.
      1. Province of Himachal Pradesh was organized on 15 April 1948, as a result of integration of 28 princely states.
      2. Statehood of Himachal Pradesh happened on Jan 25, 1971.
  17. Apr 14, 2019
    1. April 14th is Birth Anniversary of Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar. He campaigned against social discrimination towards the untouchables (Dalits). He was independent India's first law and justice minister, architect of the Constitution of India. His Birth anniversary is observed as Social Justice Day, announced in 2018. Note that UN World Day of Social Justice is observed on Feb 20.
    2. RailWire Wi-Fi by RailTel is now live at 1600 railway stations across country, with Santacruz railway station in Mumbai becoming the 1600th.RailWire It envisages extending broadband and application services to the public. RailTel.
    3. Hong Kong’s equity market overtook Japan to be world’s third largest in value, behind U.S. and mainland China. Hong Kong Equity market cap was $5.78 trillion, ahead of Japan’s market cap of $5.76 trillion.
    4. Alice G. Vaidyan, CMD of General Insurance Corporation (GIC) of India has been awarded Freedom of the City of London in recognition of her work to promote insurance ties between India and UK. She was first lady CMD of GIC and also the first lady CMD in public-sector insurance industry (non-life).
      1. Freedom of the City is an honour bestowed by City of London Corporation,with its Genesis traced to medieval time of around 1237.
    5. West Bengal government Schemes ‘Utkarsh Bangla’ (skill training of youth) and ‘Sabooj Sathi’ (cycles for students) won World Summit on Information Society (WSIS) awards by UN. Utkarsh Bangla emerged winner in Capacity Building category and Sabooj Sathi was ranked in the first five as a champion project under ICT application: E-Government category.
      1. Utkarsh Bangla is aimed at providing vocational training to school dropouts. The beneficiaries of the scheme will be trained in driving, tailoring, repairing television and other electronic equipment’s, beautician courses etc.
      2. Sabooj Sathi aims at distribution of bicycles to students of class IX to XII studying in Govt. Schools and Madrashas.
      3. World Summit on the Information Society Awards is a global multi-stakeholder platform facilitating the implementation of the WSIS Action Lines for advancing sustainable development.
    6. Supreme Court Judge K.M. Joseph stated that Right to Information Act confers on ordinary citizens the ‘priceless right’ to demand information even in matters affecting national security and relations with a foreign state.
      1. This judgment countered claim made by government for privilege over Rafale purchase documents under Official Secrets Act (OSA), saying it affected national security and relations with France. Justice Joseph said Right to Information (RTI) Act overawes the OSA.
      2. Under Section 8(2) of RTI Act, government cannot refuse information if disclosure in public interest overshadows certain ‘protected interests.’
    7. Navy chief Sunil Lanba inaugurated Virtual Reality Centre (VRC) in New Delhi at Directorate of Naval Design (Surface Ship Group), that aims to boost indigenous warship design capabilities of Navy. VRC centre will facilitate collaborative design reviews for continuous interaction between designers and end-users to improve design and ergonomics onboard warships.
    8. United Nations Security Council (UNSC) approved resolution to completely end its peacekeeping operations in Haiti on October 15, 2019.
      1. UN Peace Keeping Mission in Haiti was known as MINUSTAH, a French acronym which stood for “The United Nations is not leaving.”
      2. MINUSTAH began operations in Haiti in 2004, when a violent rebellion swept country and forced then-President Jean-Bertrand Aristide out of power and into exile.
    9. Ministry of Commerce and Industries urged Health Ministry to frame law banning manufacture and sale of e-cigarettes in the country, to put a blanket ban on its imports. Electronic cigarettes are devices that do not burn or use tobacco leaves but instead vaporise a solution, which a user then inhales. As per WHO, 30 countries have already banned Electronic cigarettes.
    10. Bamboo rice shown up in Odisha, after last witnessing it in 1979. Forest Authorities of Chandaka-Dampara Wildlife Sanctuary in Cuttack district have opened up the gates for the forest dwellers to collect Bamboo rice.
      1. Whenever bamboo rice shows up, it would be accompanied by the increase in the rat population which starts running over bamboo rice. To avoid this menace, forest authorities allowed forest dwellers to harvest Bamboo rice.
      2. Bamboo rice grows out of a dying bamboo shoot. Bamboo rice looks like paddy rice and tastes more like wheat. Bamboo rice is not commonly available as it takes many years for a bamboo tree to flower. Bamboo rice is believed to contain a low glycaemic index compared to other varieties and it is good for diabetics. It’s rich in proteins and does not contain any fat.
    11. 2019 UNESCO/Guillermo Cano Press Freedom Prize awarded to Reuters reporters Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, for their exceptional courage in reporting on alleged human rights violations in the Myanmar’s state of Rakhine.
      1. Their documentary on the taboo topic regarding crimes committed against Rohingyas landed them behind the bars. UNESCO/Guillermo Cano Press Freedom Prize recognises outstanding contributions to the defence or promotion of press freedom especially in the face of danger. It carries a reward of $25,000 Prize.
      2. Prize is named after Guillermo Cano Isaza, Colombian journalist who was assassinated in front of offices of his newspaper El Espectador in Bogotá, Colombia, on 17 December 1986.
    12. Mercedes Racer Lewis Hamilton (UK) won Chinese Formula One Grand Prix 2019 -
      1. Formula 1 Season 2019 -
        Round Grand Prix Winner date
        1 Australian Grand Prix Valtteri Bottas (Finland) 17 March
        2 Bahrain Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton (UK) 31 March
        3 Chinese Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton (UK) 14 April
        4 Azerbaijan Grand Prix   28 April
        5 Spanish Grand Prix   12 May
        6 Monaco Grand Prix   26 May
        7 Canadian Grand Prix   9 June
        8 French Grand Prix   23 June
        9 Austrian Grand Prix   30 June
        10 British Grand Prix   14 July
        11 German Grand Prix   28 July
        12 Hungarian Grand Prix   4 August
        13 Belgian Grand Prix   1 September
        14 Italian Grand Prix   8 September
        15 Singapore Grand Prix   22 September
        16 Russian Grand Prix   29 September
        17 Japanese Grand Prix   13 October
        18 Mexican Grand Prix   27 October
        19 United States Grand Prix   3 November
        20 Brazilian Grand Prix   17 November
        21 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix   1 December
  18. Apr 13, 2019
    1. Apr 13, 2019 marks 100th anniversary of Jallianwallah Bagh Massacre.
      1. On 13th April 1919, huge number of people gathered at Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar to celebrate harvest festival of Baisakhi and to protest against Rowlatt Act. Troops of British Indian Army under command of Colonel Dyer opened fire at people, Killing over 1000 people.
      2. British Prime Minister Theresa May described Jallianwala Bagh massacre as a “shameful scar” on British Indian history and expressed deep regret over the event.
      3. Apr 13 is also observed as Rajouri Day, Which commemorates valour of soldiers who laid down their lives for liberation of Rajouri district. Pakistani raiders captured Rajouri (J & K) on 7 November 1947. Rajouri was recaptured on 12 April 1948 from rebels and Pakistan Army personnel were dispelled.
    2. Gargi Kaul has been appointed as Secretary (Defence Finance).
    3. Sudan's 3 decade long rulling president Omar al-Bashir has been removed and arrested following months of protests against him.
      1. Army general announced dissolution of government, suspension of the 2005 constitution, along with a three-month state of emergency.
      2. Protests started against al-Bashir in December 2018 when government stopped subsidies on wheat and fuel. Situation turned violent and engulfed capital Khartoum and major metropolitan areas.
      3. Government took a strong action against protesters by cracking down on protestors, killing over 49 people. President also declared a yearlong state of emergency and dissolved both central and state governments.
      4. All these actions by al-Bashir provoked the protests across country and the coup occured.
    4. India's flagship programme, National Mission for Clean Ganga or Namami Gange felicitated with coveted Public Water Agency of the Year award at Global Water Summit at London (UK), presented by Global Water Intelligence.
      1. Namami Gange programme aims at providing sustainable solutions for major pollution hot spots along stretch of 97 towns and 4,465 villages on Ganga stem.
      2. In Namami Gange programme, total 289 projects have so far been sanctioned at a cost of Rs 28,377 crore out of which 87 projects have been completed.
      3. Till date, 37 projects of pollution abatement have been completed, which has resulted in laying 2,565 km sewer networks and of 575 MLD of STP capacities in Ganga basin.
    5. US space flight company SpaceX carried out its first commercial launch with its Falcon Heavy rocket by placing a Saudi telecommunication satellite in orbit. This was also the first time that all three of the rocket's reusable boosters returned safely to Earth.
      1. With total 27 Merlin engines, Falcon Heavy rocket is capable of generating more than 5 million pounds (2.3 million kg) of thrust at liftoff, which is equal to about eighteen 747 aircraft or more than a dozen jetliners. 
      2. The rocket can lift a total weight of 64 tons into orbit, which is just double of the lift capacity of operational vehicle 'Delta IV Heavy.
      3. Falcon Heavy equals strength of 3 Falcon 9 rockets of SpaceX.
    6. Scientists discovered a new human species ‘Homo luzonensis’ in Philippines, with remains being between 67,000 years to 50,000 years old.   It has 13 bones and teeth from two adults and one child found in a cave on island of Luzon in Philippines. Unlike Homo sapiens, whose premolar teeth generally have a single root, Homo luzonensis' premolars had two or three roots, similar to more primitive species such as Homo erectus, which lived in Africa and Asia between about 1.89 million and 143,000 years ago.
      1. It’s quite possible that Homo luzonensis was smaller than Homo sapiens, and perhaps even smaller than Homo floresiensis, as the study's lead author Florent Détroit, a paleoanthropologist at Paris’ Museum of Man.
      2. Homo luzonensis in many features hark back to australopithecines, upright-walking ape-like creatures that lived in Africa between two and four million years ago, as well as very early members of the genus Homo.
    7. Russia honoured Indian PM Narendra Modi with Order of St Andrew the Apostle, highest order of Russian Federation, for promoting partnership and friendly relations between the two countries.
      1. Order of St Andrew the Apostle is both the highest and the oldest state decoration of Russia.  It was established as the first and highest order of chivalry of Russian Empire in 1698 but was abolished under USSR in 1918 before being reinstated as top Russian order in 1998.
    8. US lawmakers reintroduced a legislation named H R 2123 in House of Representatives, that seeks to strengthen US-India strategic relationship. If enacted, the new bill would ensure that the US State Department treats India as a NATO ally for the purposes of the Arms Export Control Act.
    9. India will be Guest of Honour country at 2019 Abu Dhabi International Book Fair (ADIBF) to in last week of April 2019 (29th edition).  It aims to highlight UAE’s rich heritage, and showcase its authenticity, cultural and literary output.
    10. Parliament of New Zealand voted to ban all types of semi-automatic weapons and assault rifles following recent Christchurch attacks.
  19. Apr 12, 2019
    1. Apr 12 - International Day of Human Space Flight. It marks first human space flight by Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin in 1961. It was proclaimed by UN General Assembly in 2011. The day is also observed as ‘Cosmonautics Day’ in Russia and some other countries.
    2. Digital payments security and payment facilitator PayU acquired Wibmo, a US-based financial technology firm for USD 70 million (about Rs 484 crores). Wibmo will continue to operate and serve all of its clients as a wholly-owned subsidiary of PayU.
    3. India and Sweden launched a joint programme that will work towards addressing a range of challenges around smart cities and clean technologie, co-funded by Indian Department of Science and Technology (DST) and Swedish agency Vinnova.
    4. PAISALO Digital Limited signed first co-origination loan agreement with State Bank of India, as first such agreement by SBI. Loans between 10,000 to 2 lakh are available under this arrangement.
    5. Government retained interest rate for General Provident Fund (GPF), Contributory Provident Fund and other related schemes at 8 % for the first quarter of current financial year. iT will be applicable on provident funds of central government employees, railways and defence forces.
    6. Google launched Anthos, a new open platform from Google Cloud. It allows users to run applications, unmodified, on existing on-premise hardware or on public cloud, based on Cloud Services Platform that Google announced in 2018.
    7. Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) partnered with Google Cloud to build industry-specific cloud solutions. It will help enterprises build secure, cloud-native analytics platforms that enable high levels of personalization, and are cost-effective, easy to maintain, and future ready.
    8. RBL Bank partnered with credit profiler CreditVidya to improve RBL's customer experience.
    9. Forbes compiled its first-ever list of World's Best Banks 2019 in terms of customer services and technological advancements. In context of India, Top 5 Banks are - HDFC Bank (1), ICICI Bank (2), DBS (3), Kotak Mahindra Bank (4) and IDFC Bank (5).
      1. Syndicate Bank, PNB, Allahabad Bank, Vijaya Bank and Axis Bank were ranked from sixth to tenth respectively.
      2. India's largest public sector bank, State Bank of India (SBI), was ranked 11th by customers.
    10. All India Tennis Association (AITA) has signed an MoU with Serbian Tennis Federation (STF) to train Indian junior players under world-renowned Serbian coaches.
  20. Apr 11, 2019
    1. According to United Nations Population Fund Report -
      1. India’s population grew to 1.36 billion at an average annual rate of 1.2% between 2010 and 2019 which stands more than double the annual growth rate of China.
      2. India’s population is 1.36 billion in 2019, picking from 942.2 million in 1994 and 541.5 million in 1969.
      3. Compared to India, China’s population has grown at an average annual rate of 0.5% between 2010 and 2019. Currently in 2019, China’s population stands at 1.42 billion which has risen from 1.23 billion in 1994 and 803.6 million in 1969.
      4. In India, fertility rate per woman dropped from 5.6% in 1969 to 3.7% in 1994 to 2.3% in 2019. Life expectancy at birth was 47 years in 1969, 60 years in 1994 and now, 69 years in 2019, thus recording a thorough enhancement in life expectancy at birth.
      5. Maternal Mortality Ratio decreased from 488 deaths per 100,000 live births (in 1994) to 174 deaths per 100,000 live births (in 2015).
    2. Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) partnered with the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) to map, validate and protect smaller wetlands in the coastal region and preserve them through coastal livelihood programmes.
      1. Smaller wetlands in India cover a total area of more than 5 lakh hectares, with Kerala alone having 2,592 smaller wetlands. Concerned MOU between CMFRI and ISRO will identify and separate various wetlands and conserve degraded wetlands through suitable livelihood options.
      2. A mobile app and a centralised web portal with a complete database of wetlands in country which were smaller than 2.25 hectares will be developed.
      3. Collaboration is part of the national framework for fisheries and wetlands recently developed under the National Innovations in Climate Resilient Agriculture (NICRA).
    3. Payments Platform Google Pay partnered with Bullion refiner MMTC-PAMP India to initiate buying and selling of gold. Through this, Google Pay users will be able to buy 99.99 percent 24-karat gold for any value, which will be stored on behalf of the user in secure vaults by MMTC-PAMP.
    4. An image of a little girl crying, as she and her mother have been taken into custody by US border officials in Texas won World Press Photo of the Year 2018. It has been taken by photographer John Moore in June 2018. Dutch-Swedish photographer Pieter Ten Hoopen won “World Press Photo Story of the Year Award” for image of 2018 mass-migrant caravan to the US border.
    5. Telecom Department approved merger of TTSL (Tata Teleservices Limited) consumer mobility business with Bharti Airtel, subject to condition that Airtel provides bank guarantees of about Rs. 7,200 crores.
      1. Merger will be taken on record after Airtel submits bank guarantee of about Rs 6,000 crore for one-time spectrum charges and another Rs 1,200 crore for spectrum that would be acquired from TTSL.
      2. Airtel will absorb Tata consumer mobile business (CMB) operations in 19 telecom circles (17 under TTSL and 2 under Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) Ltd ).
      3. Merger will bolster Airtel's spectrum pool with significant additional 178.5 MHz spectrum in 1800, 2100 and 850 MHz bands, all widely used for 4G.
    6. Researchers at University of Wisconsin-Madison in US have manufactured a tiny spectrometer that can be used in smartphone-sized devices to identify dangerous chemicals based on a unique “fingerprint” of emitted and absorbed light. It uses hyperspectral imaging, collecting every information about each individual pixel in an image to identify materials.
    7. England's MCC (the Marylebone Cricket Club) bestowed honour of ‘Honorary Life Members’ to Pakistan’s Inzamam-ul-Haq and South Africa’s Mark Boucher for their exemplary achievements in cricket.
    8. As per WHO’s (World Health Organisation) list of 15 most polluted cities in the world -
      1. Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh) is the most polluted city in the world and is positioned 1 on the list.
      2. 14 of the 15 most polluted cities in the world are in India. Faridabad in Haryana is in 2nd position after Kanpur.
      3. Delhi is ranked 6th on the list.
    9. According to RBI Data, bank credit rose 13.24% to Rs 97.67 lakh crores in FY 2018-19. It is 2nd consecutive credit growth after 2018-19. The credit growth was 4.54 % in FY17 at Rs 78.41 lakh crores, lowest in 5 decades.
    10. New technique named dual-PWS, has been developed by researchers to study the movement of cells without using labels or dyes. It also disclosed an undiscovered phenomenon that may play a role in earliest stages of cell death. New technique is a label-free and can image and measure macromolecular motion without using dyes.
    11. Rio Paralympics silver medalist Deepa Malik honoured with New Zealand Prime Minister’s Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship for 2019 in recognition of her “inspiring achievements”. She won silver in shot put F53 event in Rio Paralympics in 2016. She became the first Indian woman to win a medal at Paralympics and first Indian women to win medals in 3 consecutive Asian Para Games in 2010, 2014 and 2018.
    12. Shiv Das Meena has been appointed as Chairman cum Managing Director (CMD) of PSU National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC).
    13. Apr 11 - World Parkinson's Day, related to Parkinson's disease. It marks birth anniversary of James Parkinson, who published first detailed description on Shaking Palsy, in 1817.
    14. Apr 11 - National Safe Motherhood Day (NSMD). 2019 theme is “Midwives for Mothers”.
  21. Apr 10, 2019
    1. Apr 10- World Homeopathy Day. It marks birth aniversary of Dr Samuel Hahnemann who discovered Homeopathy in 1796. 2019 theme is Linking Education and Clinical Practice with Research: Advancing Scientific Collaborations.
    2. Supreme Court Collegium recommends names of 5 judges as Chief Justices of Different High Courts -
      1. S Ravindra Bhat - Rajasthan High Court.
      2. A K Mittal - Meghalaya High Court.
      3. Vikram Nath - Andhra Pradesh High Court.
      4. A S Oka - Karnataka High Court.
      5. Ramachandra Menon - Chhattisgarh High Court.
    3. Visits to India (Apr 1 - 10, 2019) -
      1. Russian Deputy Minister of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media, Alexey Volin Visited India.
      2. Piyal De Silva, Commander of Sri Lanka Navy (Navy Chief) visited India.
    4. Visits From India (Apr 1 - 10, 2019) -
      1. Bipin Rawat, Chief of Indian Army Visited USA.
    5. General Conferences(Apr 1 - 10, 2019) -
      1. A National Seminar on “Greenery and Landscaping” organized by Central Public Works Department (CPWD) in New Delhi.
      2. 7th Foreign Office consultations between India and Italy held in New Delhi.
      3. National Cardiology Conference 2019 held at Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of medical sciences in Lucknow (UP).
      4. International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT) organized NuGen Mobility Summit 2019, at Manesar (Haryana), to share new ideas and innovations for faster adoption of advanced automotive technologies for a smarter and greener future. ICAT Manesar is a division of NATRIP Implementation Society (NATIS) under Department of Heavy Industries, Government of India.
      5. 4th Meeting of India-Ukraine Working Group on Trade and Economic Cooperation (IU-WGTEC) held in New Delhi. Ukrainian Side was led by Oleksiy Rozhkov (Director of Directorate for International Trade and Economic Cooperation and European Integration of Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine).
      6. Music and poetry festival titled ‘Jashne-Ittihad’ held at Jamia Millia Islamia central university in New Delhi to spread awareness about unity amongst the youth.
      7. Biannual Army Commanders’ Conference held in New Delhi.
      8. Government organizes Prevention of Blindness Week annually from 1st to 7th April to raise awareness regarding precautions to be taken to prevent blindness.
    6. Election Commission of India prohibited display in electronic media including cinematograph of any biopic or publicity material in nature of biography/hagiography sub-serving purposes of any political entity or any individual entity connected to it. It was done by EC using powers under Article 324. It has direct reference to deferring release of a Bollywood Movie which is biopic of PM Narendra Modi.
    7. India - Singapore joint military exercise, named Bold Kurukshetra 2019 held (12th edition) at Babina Cantonment, Jhansi (Uttar Pradesh).
    8. Video sharing platform YouTube confirmed that India has become YouTube’s largest and fastest growing market, gettin past USA. YouTube has over 265 million monthly active users in India.
    9. Scientists made possible birth of a nearly transparent Anolis lizard, the first gene-edited reptile.
      1. Researchers edited the immature, unfertilized eggs of brown anole lizards.
      2. Researchers typically edit with CRISPR by injecting it into a single-celled fertilized egg, creating a DNA change that is present in all subsequent cells. Female anoles are a special challenge; they store sperm in their oviducts for long periods, making it difficult to time introduction of CRISPR to fertilization.
      3. They also form eggshells at fertilization, and it’s extremely difficult to insert a needle at that stage without damaging the embryo.
      4. Researchers from University of Georgia (UGA) in Athens instead injected CRISPR complex into immature eggs still in ovaries, targeting a gene that produces tyrosinase, an enzyme that affects pigmentation.
    10. Benjamin Netanyahu secured his record 5th Term as Prime Minister of Israel. His Likud party won 36 seats, surpassed main rival Blue and White party that got 35. Netanyahu now needs to form a governing coalition with at least 61 members in Israel's 120-seat parliament (the Knesset). He will partner with right-wing and ultra-Orthodox parties for the same.
    11. On Apr 09, 2019 - CRPF observed their 54th Valour Day (Shaurya Diwas). On this occasion, President Ram Nath Kovind launched ‘Veer Parivar App’, a mobile application for families of CRPF personnel killed in the line of duty. It will act as an interface between CRPF authorities and next of kin of the slain personnel. It will be installed securely on the phones of the slain personnel families and will not be available in app stores.
    12. Cabinet Committee of Security approved procurement of 464 T-90 tanks from Russia, worth over 13,000 crores. It will increase new T-90 regiments by 10 more units. T-90 tanks would be equipped with thermal imaging night sights to allow striking during night battles.
    13. Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) announced a course in Film Criticism and the Art of Review for the first time. This 20-day Course would be conducted from May 28 to June 19, 2019 in Delhi in association with Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC), Delhi. It would be led by Bhopal-based filmmaker, Rajula Shah, an FTII alumnus. She studied film direction at FTII from 1997 to 2000.
    14. Team of international scientists unveiled First ever image of a black hole, captured through Event Horizon Telescope project -
      1. The cosmic portrait belongs to black hole at center of Messier 87, the largest galaxy we know so far, about 54 million light-years away.
      2. Image comes from Event Horizon Telescope, a network of 10 radio telescopes spread across planet and functioning as a single receiver.
      3. The observation and processing of the image took 2 years.
      4. Image shows boundary between light and dark around a black hole, called the event horizon - the point of no return, where the gravity of the black hole becomes so extreme that nothing that enters can ever escape (Not even light). At the center of black hole, time and space become so curved upon themselves that laws of physics break down completely.
      5. Analysis revealed that what was within the dark inner circle was rotating clockwise. This could either be the black hole itself or matter that was falling into it. mass of this black hole was calculated to be 6.5 billion times the mass of the Sun and its diameter is 100 billion kilometres.
      6. Despite the name, Black holes are not empty but instead consist of a huge amount of matter packed densely into a small area, giving it an immense gravitational pull.
      7. Image -
        1. BLACKHOLE
    15. All India Management Association (AIMA) Managing India Awards 2019 -
      1. Lifetime Contribution Award

        Azim H Premji (Chairman, Wipro Ltd)

        Outstanding Institution Builder

        Prathap C Reddy (Founder-Chairman, Apollo Hospitals Group)

        Entrepreneur of the year

        Sanjiv Bajaj (Managing Director, Bajaj Finserv Ltd)

        Business Leader of the Year

        Sanjiv Mehta  (Chairman & Managing Director, Hindustan Unilever Ltd)

        Indian MNC of the Year

        Pawan Goenka (Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd, Managing Director and Member of the Group Executive Board)

        MNC in India of the Year

        T Krishnakumar (Coca-Cola India, President & CEO, India & Southwest Asia)

        Outstanding PSU of the Year

        Sanjiv Singh (Chairman, Indian Oil Corporation Ltd)

        Director of the Year

        Rajkumar Hirani (Director, Producer, Writer & Editor - Sanju)

  22. Apr 09, 2019
    1. 2019 Monterrey Open Women's  Tennis (Mexico) -
      1. Singles - Garbiñe Muguruza (Spain). She defeated Victoria Azarenka (Belarus)
      2. Doubles - USA's Asia Muhammad AND Maria Sanchez
    2. Dream11 become First Indian Gaming Startup to become a Unicorn (worth a billion-dollars). It achieved this after getting investment of $60 million from Steadview Capital of London and Hong Kong.
    3. Abdelkader Bensalah has been appointed as Interim President of African Nation Algeria. He is first new president of Algeria in 20 years, chosen after recent resignation of long rulling leader Abdelaziz Bouteflika.
    4. Jean Michel Lapin has been confirmed as New Prime Minister of Caribbean Nation Haiti. He was appointed as acting PM of Haiti in Mar 2019.
    5. Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack 2019 -
      1. India's Virat Kohli and Smriti Mandhana as Leading male and female cricketer of 2019 respectively. Smriti Mandhana bagged women’s title for first time while Virat Kohli named for 3rd straight year.
      2. Virat Kohli is also named among England’s Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran and Tammy Beaumont in receiving the honour Wisden’s Five Cricketers of the Year.
      3. Afghanistan Cricketer Rashid Khan named Leading Twenty20 Cricketer for 2nd successive time.
    6. General Electric (US) in association with IIT Madras has established India’s first ‘Cold Spray’ SMART (Surface Modification and Additive Research Technologies) Laboratory, making IIT-M only academic institution with High-Pressure Cold Spray (HPCS) facility in India.
    7. Telugu poet K Siva Reddy will be conferred Saraswati Samman, 2018, for his collection of poems titled Pakkaki Ottigilite (Turning Aside While Lying Down).
      1. The award, instituted by KK Birla Foundation, is given annually for an outstanding literary work written in any official Indian language and published during the preceding 10 years. It is the highest recognition in the field of Indian literature and carries a cash purse of Rs 15 lakh, apart from a citation and a plaque.
    8. National Green Tribunal Monday formed a committee to look into the alleged erosion of Yamuna floodplain due to movement of heavy vehicles in Haryana's Sonipat district.
    9. Guwahati Railway Station became first ever Indian railway station to get an ISO certification from National Green Tribunal (NGT) for providing passenger amenities in a clean and green environment. ISO Certificate received by Guwahati Railway Station is ISO-14001, which is for Environment Management System as per international norms which were upgraded in 2015.
    10. Government appointed Karnam Sekar as MD and CEO of Indian Overseas Bank. He was earlier MD and CEO of Dena Bank which was amalgamated into Bank of Baroda.
      1. Also, R A Sankara Narayanan has been appointed as MD and CEO of Canara Bank. He was former MD and CEO of Vijaya Bank which was also amalgamated into Bank of Baroda.
      2. Also, Rajesh Kumar Yaduvanshi, Executive Director in Dena Bank, was appointed as Executive Director in Punjab National Bank.
    11. Vikramjit Singh Sahney (SUN Group Chairman) elected as the new president of International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) - India.
    12. HDFC Asset Management Comp. claimed top spot among asset management companies in India with an average AUM of Rs3.42 trillion, overtaking ICICI Prudential Asset Management Comp. (AUM of 3.20 trillion).
      1. India’s AMCs own assets under management (AUM) worth Rs24.46 trillion, according to Association of Mutual Funds in India (Amfi).
    13. Bombay Stock Exchange signed MoU with HDFC Bank, to strengthen BSE Startups platform and spread more awareness on benefits of listing of startups on BSE startup platform.
    14. Emirates Islamic (UAE) launched Chat Banking services for customers via WhatsApp, marking a global first in Islamic banking sector.
    15. London (UK) is first city in world to implement an always on Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), inside which vehicles will have to meet tough emissions standards or face a charge. It aims to reduce toxic air pollution and protect public health.
    16. World Economic Forum in Middle East and North Africa (MENA) held in Jordan (Dead Sea).
    17. Google parent Alphabet launched its commercial drone delivery businesses, making its first delivery in Canberra (Australia).
    18. UNICEF released titled titled, “A Gathering Storm: Climate Change Clouds the Future of Children in Bangladesh" -
      1. Approx 19.4 million children in 20 of Bangladesh’s 64 districts, are exposed to most detrimental and hazardous consequences of  short- or longer-term climate change.
    19. International Maritime Organisation (IMO) launched new rules to introduce electronic information exchange between ships and ports for national governments. The requirement, mandatory under IMO’s Convention on Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL Convention), is part of amendments under revised Annex to FAL Convention, adopted in 2016. It was important measure because 10 billion tonnes of goods which are traded by sea annually across the globe.
      1. Facilitation of International Maritime Traffic (FAL Convention) was adopted in 1965. FAL Convention encourages use of a “single window” for data, to enable all information required by public authorities, to be submitted via a single portal, without duplication.
      2. All national authorities should now have provision for electronic exchange of this information.
    20. Scientists at University of Edinburgh (Scotland) found a new state of physical matter recently which is solid and liquid at the same time. Findings reveal that when applying high pressures and temperatures to potassium (and possibly some other metals too), it creates a state in which most of the element's atoms form a solid lattice structure.
      1. Between 20,000 - 40,000 times atmospheric pressure and 400 to 800 Kelvin (260 to 980 degrees Fahrenheit), potassium entered what’s called a chain-melted state, in which the chains dissolved into liquid while the remaining potassium crystals stayed solid.
  23. Apr 08, 2019
    1. Election Commission of India banend exit polls and publishing or publicizing result of exit polls during Lok sabha Elections 2019, in exercise of powers under sub-section(1) of Section 126A of Representation of People Act 1951.
      1. Elections Legislative Assemblies of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha & Sikkim 2019 will be held along with Lok sabha Elections 2019.
    2. National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) 2019 -
      1. Top 5 (Overall) -
        1. IIT Madras
        2. IISC Bengaluru
        3. IIT Delhi
        4. IIT Bombay
        5. IIT Kharagpur
      2. Top 5 (Universities) -
        1. IISC Bengaluru
        2. JNU Delhi
        3. BHU Varanasi
        4. University of Hyderabd
        5. Calcutta University
      3. Top 3 (Engineering) -
        1. IIT Madras
        2. IIT Delhi
        3. IIT Bombay
      4. Top 3 (Management) -
        1. IIM Bengaluru
        2. IIM Ahmedabad
        3. IIM Calcutta
      5. Top 3 (Medical)
        1. AIIMS Delhi
        2. PGIMER Chandigarh
        3. CMC Vellore
      6. Top 5 Colleges
        1. Miranda House Delhi
        2. Hindu College Delhi
        3. Presidency College Chennai
    3. India evacuated its contingent of peacekeeping forces comprising of 15 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel from Tripoli (Capital of Libya) after situation in war-hit Libya suddenly worsened.
      1. Since 2011 killing of long-ruling dictator Muammar Gaddafi, Libya is engulfed in a crisis. Even though there is an UN-backed internationally recognised government headed by Fayez al-Sarraj, Libya is governed by several rival authorities.
    4. RBI issued guidelines for banks to set up new currency chests, including -
      1. Area of strong room of at least 1,500 sq ft. For those situated in hilly/ inaccessible places, strong room/ vault area of at least 600 sq ft.
      2. New chests should have a processing capacity of 6.6 lakh pieces of banknotes per day (2.1 lakh for hilly/ inaccessible places)
      3. Currency chests should have Chest Balance Limit (CBL) of Rs 1,000 crores.
      4. As per RBIm currency management infrastructure consists of network of 19 issue offices of RBI, 3,975 currency chest and 3,654 small coin depots of commercial, co-operative and regional rural banks across country.
    5. UK government has released a white paper on ‘online harms’, to limit harmful online content. UK government's Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) called for an internet regulator with the power to issue fine, to block access to websites if necessary, and to make individual executives legally liable for harmful content spread on their platforms.
    6. As per World Bank’s Migration and Development Brief Report -
      1. India retained its position as world’s top recipient of remittances in 2018, with Indians working abroad sending back $79 billion to home. India received $ 62.7 billion remittances in 2016 and it was $65.3 billion in 2017. India was followed by China ($67 billion), Mexico ($36 billion), Philippines ($34 billion) and Egypt ($29 billion).
    7. International Monetary Fund (IMF) World Economic Outlook April 2019 -
      1. Global growth will be 3.3% in 2019, down from 3.6% in 2018 and 4% in 2017.
      2. China is expected to slow down to 5.5% by 2024 as it moves towards increasing private consumption and services and regulatory tightening.
      3. India’s economy will grow 7.1% in 2019-20 and is expected to accelerate to 7.3% in FY 2020-21 and 7.5% in 2021-22. All estimates are 0.2 percentage points less than its previous assessment in January.
      4. IMF estimates are higher than those of RBI. RBI in its 1st Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Review for 2019-20 had cut its growth forecast to 7.2% for FY 2019-20 and 7.4% for FY21.
    8. India’s education technology startup ‘Dost Education’ has bagged a $25,000 Next Billion Edtech Prize 2019 along with two other winners - Ubongo (Tanzania) and PraxiLabs (Egypt).
      1. Dost Education was awarded for its ability to empower parents to take charge of their child’s early education by creating short, friendly audio content that is sent to them via their mobile phones.
      2. Next Billion Edtech Prize 2019 is awarded by UK-based Varkey Foundation, recognizing most innovative technology destined to have a radical impact on education in low income and emerging world countries.
    9. Usha Padhee has been appointed as chairman and managing director (CMD) of PSU Pawan Hans Limited, as First Female CMD of the company.
    10. Aoleang Monyu festival held in Mon (Nagaland), with around 5000 Konyak Naga women in their traditional attire setting a Guinness World Record for the ‘Largest Traditional Konyak Dance’. Theme of Aoleang Monyu festival (also called Mini Hornbill is ‘Empowering women for cultural heritage.‘
  24. Apr 07, 2019
    1. Apr 7 - World Health Day. 2019 Theme is Universal Health Coverage: Everyone, Everywhere. It is being observed since 1950.
      1. Apr 7 is also observed as International Day of Reflection on the 1994 Rwanda Genocide. It was against Tutsi community directed by members of Hutu majority government. About 85% of Rwandans were Hutus and Tutsi minority has long dominated the country. In 1959, Hutus overthrew the Tutsi monarchy.
    2. Indian Navy and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) inked an MoU to undertake joint research and development of advanced technologies for Indian Navy.
    3. Power Producer National Thermal Power Corporation signed term-loan agreement with Canara Bank to raise Rs 2,000 crores. Loan has a door to door tenure of 15 years.
    4. Hockey India named Graham Reid (Australia) as the new chief coach of the India men's hockey team.
    5. 2019 Malaysia Open Badminton -
      1. Men's Singles - Lin Dan (China). He Defeated Chen Long (China).
      2. Women's Singles - Tai Tzu-ying (Chinese Taipei).
      3. Men's Doubles - China's Li Junhui AND Liu Yuchen
      4. Women's Doubles - China's Chen Qingchen AND Jia Yifan
      5. Mixed Doubles - China'S Zheng Siwei AND Huang Yaqiong
    6. Competition Commission of India (CCI) approved engineering and construction major Larsen & Toubro (L&T) proposal to acquire up to 66.15% stake in IT Services Firm Mindtree.
    7. David Malpass (USA) chosen as new President of World Bank. He will replace Jim Yong Kim who left the post in Feb 2019.
    8. First Global Conference on Synergies between 2030 Agenda and Paris Agreement held at Copenhagen (Denmark). It aims to encourage action around Sustainable Development Goals and provide strategies for boosting up the connection between the SDGs and climate action.
      1. Global Cooling Coalition was launched at the conference, a unified front that links action across Kigali Amendment, Paris Agreement and Sustainable Development Goals.
      2. The Coalition aims to Inspire ambition, identify solutions and mobilise action to accelerate progress towards clean and efficient cooling.
      3. Global Cooling Coalition offers a three-in-one opportunity to cut global warming, improve the lives of hundreds of millions of people and make huge financial savings.
    9. US House of Representatives voted to end US involvement in Yemen’s civil war, rejecting US President's support for Saudi-led campaign in Yemen. Even though the resolution has been passed with an overwhelming majority at the House of Representatives, Mr Trump is expected to veto the legislation.
  25. Apr 06, 2019
    1. Vice President Venkaiah Naidu conferred President’s Certificate of Honour and Maharshi Badrayan Vyas Samman Awards to over 100 Awardees.
      1. Certificate of Honour was introduced in 1958 to honour the scholars of Sanskrit, Arabic and Persian Languages.
      2. Maharshi Badrayan Vyas Sammandistinction is conferred for contribution in field of Sanskrit, Persian, Arabic, Pali, Prakrit, Classical Odiya, Classical Kannada, Classical Telugu and Classical Malayalam. It was introduced in 2002.
    2. Markets regulator SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India) has approved an ‘Airport’ specific fund, named Taking Off To The Future Airport Fund, which can raise a capital of up to Rs 10,000 crore ($1.5 billion). It has been approved by SEBI as a ‘Category II Alternative Investment Fund’ (AIF).
      1. Sponsor and Investment Manager of the fund is based in Chennai and is termed as ‘Taking Off To The Future Investment Management LLP’.
      2. Minimum capital contribution of Rs. 3500 crore and a maximum of Rs. 7000 crore is targeted by the fund.
    3. Chennai Central railway station has been renamed by Tamil Nadu Government as Puratchi Thalaivar Dr MG Ramachandran Central Railway Station, after its late Chief Minister and founder of All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK).
    4. Germany scientists at Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research stated that there is more Carbon dioxide (CO2) in our atmosphere than in past 3 million years. As per report, CO2 levels should not be higher than 280 ppm without human activity, but currently it’s 410 ppm and rising.
    5. April 6 - United Nations’ (UN) International day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP).
    6. Thottathil B. Radhakrishnan is appointed as Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court. He was first Chief Justice of Telangana High Court.
    7. April 6 - 7, 2019 Marks Platinum Jubilee (75 Years) anniversary of Battle of Kangla Tongbi, one of the fiercest battles of World War II.
      1. It was fought by Ordnance personnel of 221 Advance Ordnance Depot (AOD) on the night of 6/7 April 1944, against intruding Japanese forces that planned to capture Imphal.
      2. Kangla Tongbi War Memorial is a mute testimony to this battle and unflinching devotion to duty of Ordnance personnel of 221 AOD, 19 of whom made the supreme sacrifice.
      3. Nagaland also observed 75th Anniversary of the Battle of Kohima, which was fought in 3 hree stages during the Second World War in 1944. It was considered as turning point of Japanese U Go offensive, or Operation C mission launched in India in 1944. Battle is often referred to as the “Stalingrad of the East”. Kohima was theatre of War in 1944 and Nagas were split among British and Japanese.
    8. Amazon India launched its seller-funding programme–Amazon Wings--in partnership with crowd-funding platform Ketto. Through this, Amazon looks at enabling sellers on its platform, to raise funds for their business expansion. Amazon India sellers can use Ketto’s platform for a subsidised fee of around 50 % to initiate fundraisers.
    9. Government sold "enemy" shares worth Rs 1,150 crore in IT major Wipro.
      1. Enemy shares are called so as they were originally held by people who migrated to Pakistan or China and are not Indian citizens any longer.
      2. Total 44.4 million shares, which were held by Custodian of Enemy Property for India, were sold at Rs 259 a piece.
      3. Buyers were Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), New India Assurance and General Insurance Corporation. LIC alone picked up shares worth Rs 1,000 crores.
    10. Indian Navy's INS Kolkata and INS Shakti will take part in Chinese Navy's anniversary celebrations,from 21 to 26 April. International Fleet Review (IFR) will be held as part of this event, in Qingdao (China).
    11. National Green Tribunal has put an interim penalty of Rs 100 crore on Andhra Pradesh government for inaction to prevent illegal sand mining in state.
    12. National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has resuced usage fees for small transactions on Unified Payments Interface (UPI) network, to expand system’s adoption among banks and payment service providers (PSPs).
      1. For UPI transactions up to 1,000, charges arecut to 10 paise from 25 paise. Charges for transactions above 1,000 are retained at 50 paise.
      2. Incentive payments that were charged by NPCI at same rate as normal transactions have been brought under a fixed price regime of 10 paise to encourage such promotions by banks and PSPs. Incentive payments are charges banks or PSPs pay NPCI when they credit user’s bank account with cashbacks.
      3. Charges on merchant transactions through UPI have been cut as well. In place of a tiered transaction charge of 25 paise for transactions up to 1,000 and 50 paise beyond that, NPCI has introduced a flat charge of 10 paise along with an ad-valorem levy of 0.04% split between acquiring and issuing bank.
    13. Former Pakistan Cricketer Shahid Afridi's biography named Game Changer, will be released on April 30, 2019. It has been written by Wajahat S Khan.
    14. Vikram Kirloskar has been appointed as President of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). He replaces Bharti Enterprises Chairman Rakesh Bharti Mittal.
    15. Joint military exercise between Morocco and US, named African Lion 2019 began in Morocco.
    16. Manipur celebrated Sajibu Nongma Panba Cheiraoba, the New Year of the Manipuris on April 6. It is celebrated on the first day of the Manipuri month, Sajibu, which falls in the month of March or April.
  26. Apr 05, 2019
    1. Lakshmi Vilas Bank approved merger with NBFC Indiabulls Housing Finance (IBH) through a share swap deal, in which 100 shares of LVB will fetch 14 of Indiabulls Housing finance.
      1. Merger will help Indiabulls Housing finance get entry into banking, after an unsuccessful application made by it in 2013 for a banking licence.
      2. Indiabulls HC NPA are approx .7 % and LVB is weak at 13 % NPAs. Merged entity will have 3% NPA.
    2. Bollywood Actor Shah Rukh Khan honored by a honorary doctorate by University Of Law (London), for his Philanthropy work.
    3. Indian Navy initiated process to acquire six lethal submarines under ambitious Project-75 India likely, costing over 50000 crores.
      1. Navy will build 6 conventional diesel-electric submarines which would be almost 50 per cent bigger than under-construction Scorpene class submarines being built at Mazagon Dockyards Limited in Mumbai.
    4. Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) spacecraft Hayabusa2 blasted surface of an asteroid for the first time to form a crater. Spacecraft will collect its underground samples to find possible clues to origin of solar system.
    5. Phayeng, a village of Chakpa community in Imphal West district of Manipur has been named as India’s first carbon-positive settlement. It has been revived from dry village through determination of its residents and funding under National Adaptation Fund for Climate Change (NAFCC), a central scheme launched in 2015-16 to support adaptation for climate change impact in states.
    6. A 40 million-year-old fossil of a whale-with-four-legs, webbed feet and hooves has been excavated by palaeontologists from marine sediments inland from Peru’s Pacific coast at Playa Media Luna. The whale belongs to a biological group of ancient sea mammals, termed as Archaeocetes. The 13 feet long mammal has been named as “Peregocetus pacificus”.
    7. Book Kundan: Saigal’s Life & Music”, authored by Sharad Dutt has been released.
    8. April 5 - National Maritime day in India. 2019 theme is “Indian Ocean- An Ocean of Opportunity”. It was first celebrated on 5th April, 1964.
    9. Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) approved loans worth $280 million for its first two projects in Sri Lanka. A $200 million loan will improve housing conditions for low-income communities in Colombo while another loan of $80 million will be used to reduce risk and damage from landslides in Sri Lanka.
    10. Pradeep Nandrajog will be appointed as new Chief Justice of Bombay High Court (Maharashtra). He is currently Chief Justice at Rajasthan High Court.
    11. IT industry’s apex body Nasscom appointed Keshav Murugesh as its chairman for fiscal 2019-20. U.B. Pravin Rao is appointed as Vice Chairman for same term.
    12. ESPN India Multi-Sport Awards 2018 -
      1. Sportsperson of the Year (Male) – Neeraj Chopra (athletics)
      2. Sportsperson of the Year (Female) – P V Sindhu (badminton)
      3. Comeback of the Year – Saina Nehwal (badminton)
      4. Coach of the Year – Jaspal Rana (shooting)
      5. Emerging Sportsperson of the Year – Saurabh Chaudhary (shooting)
      6. Team of the Year – Women’s team (table tennis)
      7. Differently-abled athlete of the Year – Ekta Bhyan (para-athletics)
      8. Lifetime Achievement – Pradip Kumar Banerjee (football)
    13. Bhartiya Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) received licence from Department of Telecommunications to provide Internet and mobile services on flights.
    14. BSE (Bombay Stock Exchange) and India International Exchange (India INX) signed MOU with Moscow Exchange (MOEX) to connect investor community and companies in both countries besides allowing a capital formation platform.
    15. CS Rajan has been appointed Managing Director while Vineet Nayyar named as Executive Vice-Chairman of Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services (IL&FS).
    16. Karnataka Bank signed Bancassurance MoU with Bharti AXA Life Insurance Company to distribute Insurer’s life insurance products.
    17. Asian Development Bank (ADB) published its ‘Asian Development Outlook 2019’ report -
      1. ADB has cut India’s growth forecast to 7.2% for 2019-20 because of a slower-than-expected pickup in investment demand. Growth rate in Financial Year 2020-21 is likely to be 7.3%.
      2. Growth in East Asia decelerated by 0.2% to 6.0% in 2018, weighed down by weakening external trade and moderating investment in China PRC but sustained by resilient domestic consumption.
      3. It stated that 1.7 trillion USD investment will needed per year to build disaster-resilient infrastructure in Asia, because Developing economies across Asia are among the most vulnerable to natural disasters and have suffered damages of around 644 billion dollars since 2000.
    18. Scientists at Tsinghua University and Chinese Academy of Sciences' have discovered a possible death switch mechanism in plant's immune system that triggers infected cells to self-destruct, thus limiting the spread of the disease and keeping other parts of the plant healthy.
      1. Researchers discovered that some plants have evolved to carry a resistance protein called ZAR1 that can detect bacterial proteins like AvrAC. These plants use special proteins as bait and trick the bacterial protein into attacking them instead.
      2. the discovery will provide clues to cell death control and immunity for plants.
    19. National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) and global transport infrastructure operator Roadis (Canada Based) will jointly set up a platform to invest up to $2 billion of equity in road projects in India. Platform would target toll-operate-transfer models and acquisitions of existing road concessions.
  27. Apr 04, 2019
    1. RBI's 1st Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy Review for 2019-20 -
      1. 6 member monetary policy committee IS chaired by RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das.
      2. RBI reduced 0.25 basis points in Policy Rates under liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) . Updated Rates -
        1. Repo Rate - 6 %
        2. Reverse Repo - 5.75 %
        3. Bank Rate - 6.25 %
        4. CRR (Cash Reserve Ratio) - 4 %
        5. SLR(Statutory Liquidity ratio) - 19.25 % (RBI decided to reduce SLR from to 18.0% in six quarterly instalments beginning January 2019)
        6. Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) Rate - 6.25 %
      3. RBI also projected GDP growth forecast for current fiscal at 7.2%, down from earlier estimate of 7.4 %.
    2. Fitch Ratings kept India’s sovereign rating at lowest investment grade of BBB-with a stable outlook, unchanged for 13th straight year. Growth rate of India forecasted by Fitch is 6.8% in FY 2019-20 and 7.1% in FY 2020-21. Fitch had last upgraded India's sovereign rating from BB+ to BBB- with a stable outlook on August 1, 2006.
    3. Center for Cell and Molecular Biology (CCMB) scientists discovered a new enzyme called “Murein EndopeptidiaseK”, paving way for a new drug treatment that prevents anti-bacterial resistance by existing antibiotics. It would act on the protein of cell wall in Escherichia coli (E. coli), a bacterium found in the lower intestine of warm-blooded organisms.
    4. UAE honoured PM Narendra Modi with prestigious Zayed Medal for giving a "big boost' to bilateral strategic ties. It is highest UAE decoration awarded to kings, presidents, and heads of states.
    5. Vipin Anand took charge as Managing Director of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC).
    6. Apr 4 - International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action 2019.
    7. Indian Oil Corporation started Supply of ultra-clean BS-VI grade petrol and diesel in cities adjoining national capital and Agra (UP). Rest of country will Begin using BS-VI grade Fuel from April 2020. New Delhi was first city in India to switch from BS-IV to BS-VI fuels.
      1. Bharat stage IV fuels contain 50 parts per million (ppm) sulphur whereas Bharat Stage-VI grade fuel only has 10 ppm sulphur.
      2. It will -
        1. Bring PM in diesel cars down by 80 % when compared to Bharat stage IV.
        2. Bring down nitrogen oxides from diesel cars by 70 per cent and in petrol cars by 25 per cent.
    8. South Korea launched world’s first nationwide 5G mobile networks, being first providers of super-fast wireless technology in world. Three top telecom providers—SK Telecom, KT, and LG Uplus—began their 5G services. 5G will bring smartphones near-instantaneous connectivity, 20 times faster than existing 4G.
    9. Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) and IIT Delhi signed MoU to collaborate in field of standardisation and conformity assessment -
      1. It will enable setting up a Centre of Excellence in the field of Standardisation, Testing and Conformity Assessment with BIS branding at IIT-Delhi, also appointing a Chair in field of standardisation and conformity assessment.
  28. Apr 03, 2019
    1. Indian Army constructed longest suspension bridge built over Indus River at Choglamsar village in Leh (260-feet long), in just 40 days, named Maitri. It will provide connectivity to remote areas of Ladakh and help residents of largest villages in Ladakh.
    2. India signed an agreement with National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development Consultancy Service (NABCONS) for setting up India-Africa Institute of Agriculture and Rural Development (IAIARD) in Malawi (East Africa) to enhance capacity in areas of agro-financing and entrepreneurship development for African countries.
    3. One97 Communications' wealth management arm Paytm Money received Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) approval to start stock broking services such as ability to trade in equities and cash segments, derivatives, and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) among other exchange-traded products.
    4. Gairdner Foundation named Indian Origin person Vikram Patel among 7 recepeints of Canada Gairdner Award 2019, for his research career raising global profile of mental health problems. Laureates receive a $100,000 cash honorarium.
    5. 19th edition of the bird survey in Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerala, 2 new birds species were spotted, among total 152 species that were spotted. New species spotted were Woolly-necked stork and White-bellied drongo, both dry-land species.
    6. Central Govt. has set up a tribunal, headed by Justice Chander Shekhar of Delhi HC, to adjudicate if there exists sufficient cause to ban Jamaat-e-Islami Jammu and Kashmir (JeI) and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front-Yasin Malik (JKLF-Y) faction.
    7. United Nations Appointed Nicholas Koumjian (USA) as head of Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar, established by Human Rights Council in September 2018.
    8. USA approved sale of 24 multi-role MH-60 Romeo Seahawk maritime helicopters to India at an estimated cost of USD 2.6 billion, boosting Indian Navy's anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare operationns.
    9. Supreme Court struck down RBI's February 12, 2018 order on non-performing assets, as a result of which all cases referred to or admitted under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) due to RBI order would now be cancelled.
      1. RBI circular referred all large distressed accounts with debt in excess of Rs 2000 crore to IBC if they remained unresolved within 6 months of the first day of default.
      2. This caused an uproar among power producers who challenged the circular by claiming that they were a special industry and their woes stemmed from poor coal linkage, unprofitable long-term power purchase agreements and long-standing dues from state distribution companies – for all of which they rightly held sovereign responsible.
      3. Several other entities from several industries also stood against the RBI Circular.
      4. RBI circular sourced its power from Section 35AA of Banking Regulation (Amendment) Act of 2017. It states that central government may authorise RBI to issue directions to any banking company or banking companies to initiate insolvency resolution process in respect of a default, under provisions of Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code 2016.
    10. RBI has set limits for Ways and Means Advances (WMA) for the first half of FY 2019-20 (April 2019 to September 2019) at Rs 75000 crores.
      1. WMA is temporary loan facility provided by RBI to centre and state governments, introduced in 1997.
      2. WMA needs to be vacated after 90 days. Interest rate for WMA is currently charged at repo rate (6 % as on 09-04-2019).
      3. RBI provides an overdraft facility when the WMA limit is breached. The overdraft is not allowed beyond 10 consecutive working days. b Interest rate on overdrafts would be 2 % more than repo rate.
      4. There are two types of WMA – Special and Normal WMA.
        1. Special WMA is provided against collateral of government securities held by State Government.
        2. After exhaustion of special WMA limit, State Government are provided with a normal WMA which is based on a 3 year average of actual revenue and capital expenditure of state.
    11. WhatsApp launched India-focused fact-checking feature to combat fake news and rumours, enabling Users to check authenticity of information received on platform by reporting forward to WhatsApp number +91-9643-000-888. Response will indicate if information is classified as ‘true’, ‘false’, ‘misleading’, ‘disputed’ or ‘out of scope’.
    12. US based Health Effects Institute (HEI) and Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) released report State of Global Air-2019 -
      1. Report indicates that India and China are collectively accounted for more than fifty percent of global 5 million deaths due to air pollution.
      2. India specific findings -
        1. Major PM2.5 sources in India include household burning of solid fuels; dust from construction, roads, and other activities; industrial and power plant burning of coal; brick production; transportation; and diesel-powered equipment.
        2. Approx 84.6 Crore people in India and 45.2 crore in China are exposed to household air pollution in 2017.
      3. Globally -
        1. Less developed countries suffer PM2.5 exposures that are four to five times those of more-developed countries.
        2. 5 countries with lowest national PM2.5 exposure levels - Maldives, USA, Norway, Estonia, Iceland
    13. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) 2019 Global Report on Food Crisis report -
      1. Around 11.3 crore people in 53 countries experienced acute food insecurity in 2018, compared to 124 million in 2017.
      2. Nearly two-thirds of those facing acute hunger are in just 8 countries - Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Nigeria, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.
      3. 13 countries (including North Korea and Venezuela) are not in analysis because of data gaps.
  29. Apr 02, 2019
    1. Publishing company Garuda Prakashan launched its two books -
      1. Modi Again: Why Modi is right for India, An Ex-Communist Manifesto - Abhas Maldahiya
      2. Saffron Swords – Centuries of Indic Resistance to Invaders - Manoshi Sinha Rawal
    2. India secured Test Cricket Championship Mace for 3rd successive year, along with million dollar prize. New Zealand were 2nd, followed by South Africa were and Australia.
      1. Inaugural World Test Championship will begin in August 2019, featuring 9 Test nations competing across 27 series and 71 Test matches to reach ICC World Test Championship Final in 2021, where first World Test champions will be crowned.
    3. Telangana ranked at top In eLearning training, by reaching to 20,000 field staff during 2018-19, as 2nd year in succession that State got the distinction under Department of Personal and Training (DoPT).
    4. Tata Power and Indraprastha Gas Limited (IGL) signed MOU to set up integrated customer services and optimize value for customers, also covering common safeguard activities of underground assets (pipes and cables).
    5. IT Firm HCL acquired US-based Strong-Bridge Envision, to enhance its digital transformation consulting capabilities. Deal was worth 45 million dollars.
    6. Kotak Mahindra Bank became First Bank to charge customers for UPI transactions starting May 2019. First 30 UPI fund transfers in a month will be free, after which charge 2.50 per transaction for an amount under 1,000 and 5 per transaction for amount above 1000.
    7. Supreme Court dismissed Special Leave Petition (SLP) filed against a Kerala HC Judgment setting aside Employee's Pension (Amendment) Scheme 2014.
      1. Kerala HC had asked Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) to give pension to all employees on basis of their full salary rather than capping figure on which contribution is calculated at a maximum of Rs 15,000 per month.
        1. The case -
          • EPFO amended act on September 1, 2014 to increase contribution to 8.33% of a maximum of Rs 15,000. It reduced pension of many employees.
          • Kerala HC set aside the amendment and reinstated old system of calculating the pensionable salary as average of the last one year's monthly salary.
          • In October 2016, SC directed EPFO to accept requests of employees to contribute to pension scheme on basis of full salary.
          • Despite SC judgement EPFO refused to accept contributions, stated EPFs are managed by trusts, while they were ready to contribute due amount.
        2. About Employees Pension Scheme (EPS) 1995 -
          1. Government introduced EPS in 1995, under which an employer was supposed to contribute 8.33% of employee's salary in a pension scheme. But contribution was capped at 8.33% of Rs 6,500 (or Rs 541 per month).
          2. In March 1996, government amended the act and allowed contribution to be a percentage of the actual salary.
          3. Members of EPFO gets pension benefits when retires at age of 58. Minimum service period is 10 years.
          4. Form 10D gives facility to apply for a monthly pension after retirement.
          5. Form 10C is used to withdraw EPS amount.
    8. Estonia emerged global leader in online voting with 44% of votes in the recently concluded parliamentary elections in country.
    9. USA will cut aid to countries of Northern Triangle (Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador), blaming them for sending migrants to USA. These countries share a border tri-point at Trifinio biosphere reserve, and also aspects of classical cultures, history, society, and politics.
    10. April 2 - World Autism Awareness Day. 2019 Thems is Assistive Technologies, Active Participation.
    11. Japan declared ‘Reiwa’ as the name of its new imperial era that will begin on May 1, 2019, after new Crown Prince Naruhito ascends Chrysanthemum Throne.
      1. Crown Prince Naruhito will succeed his father Emperor Akihito, putting an end to three decades long ‘Heisei’ era. Emperor Akihito’s abdication will be the first in 200 years.
      2. New era will be the 248th in the history of Japan.
      3. Era name ‘Reiwa’ is drawn from 7th century poetry collection “Manyoshu”. ‘Rei’ and ‘Wa’ stands for ‘order’ and ‘peace’, respectively.
      4. It is first time that Japanese era name (gengo) has been drawn from a Japanese document, depicting a break from over 1,300 years old custom of choosing the name from Chinese classics.
      5. The Outgoing era ‘Heisei’ means achieving peace, which began on January 8, 1989. Heisei is first era without a war in Japan’s modern history.
    12. Home Affairs Ministry extended "disturbed area" tag under Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) for three districts of Arunachal Pradesh for another six months - Tirap, Changlang and Longding.
    13. Kandhamal Haldi (a variety of turmeric indigenous to southern Odisha) earned Geographical indication (GI) tag. Kandhamal Haldi has more oleoresin and volatile oil contents compared to other turmeric varieties.
    14. GST collections scaled to a record high of Rs 1.06 Lakh Crores in March 2019, attributed to increased compliance and increase in number of returns filed.
    15. RBI changed disclosure norms for banks on material divergences on provisioning, stating that banks will now have to disclose their provisions if divergence found is more than 10 % of bank’s profit before provisioning and contingencies. Earlier, banks were required to disclose additional provisioning requirements if divergences were found to be exceeding 15 % of published net profits after tax.
      1. RBI also tweaked Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR) norms to provide an additional 2% window to lenders, to further improve the cash position of banks.
    16. India and US have set up the first ever secure communication link between the naval headquarters and the US Central as well as Pacific Naval Commands under landmark Indo-US COMCASA (Communications, Compatibility & Security Agreement) pact signed in 2018.
    17. A study by Goldman Sachs stated that Brexit has cost Britain nearly 2.5% of GDP. relative to its growth path prior to mid-2016 referendum on exiting European Union (EU). Brexit uncertainty has been a major driver of economic output losses as they are concentrated in investment.
  30. Apr 01, 2019
    1. ISRO Launched EMISAT and 28 international customer satellites from Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) SHAR in Sriharikota (Andhra Pradesh), onboard Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C45).
      1. EMISAT is a satellite built around ISRO’s Mini Satellite-2 bus weighing about 436 kg. It is intended for electromagnetic spectrum measurement. EMISAT was put in a 748 km sun-synchronous polar orbit.
        1. EMISAT will allow India to intercept radars by detecting the electromagnetic rays from “enemy radar”.
        2. EMISAT will cater to India’s strategic defence needs by strengthening the armed forces ability to intercept radar signals and gauge a variety of parameters and understand various details.
        3. EMISAT will allow India to know what kind of radar is at work on the other side, based on the spectrum and we will be able to read distance between radar and Indian assets too.
      2. 28 international customer satellites, together weighing about 220 kg, are from four countries - Lithuania (2), Spain (1), Switzerland (1) and USA (24).
      3. In ISRO's next mission, PSLV-C46 will launch RISAT-2B in May 2019.
    2. Merger of Bank of Baroda with Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank came into force from 1st April 2019, named as ‘Amalgamation of Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank with Bank of Baroda Scheme 2019.
      1. Shareholders of Vijaya Bank will get 402 equity shares (Rs 2 each) of Bank of Baroda for every 1,000 shares held.
      2. Shareholders of Dena Bank will receive 110 equity shares (Rs 2 each) of Bank of Baroda for every 1,000 equity shares held.
      3. Post Merger, Bank of Baroda will have business of around Rs 15.4 trillion and advances and deposits market share of 6.9% and 7.4%, respectively. BOB will have 2.9 % of Current and Savings Accounts.
      4. BOB has become 3rd largest Bank in India, and 2nd largest PSB after SBI. HDFC is at 2nd place in terms of Business size. BOB now has over 9500 Branches.
    3. Chile will allow visa-free entry to Indian nationals holding a valid US Visa, to promote both cultural and business ties. It was announced during President Ram Nath Kovind's recent visit to Chile.
      1. Also, India and Bolivia signed agreement for industrial use of lithium, a prime component used to power electric vehicles and cell phones. It was signed during visit of President Ram Nath Kovind to Bolivia.
      2. Bolivia has one-fourth of world’s lithium reserves, one of the major provider of metal for India’s e-mobility and e-storage needs.
      3. The agreement is substantial as India is 2nd econd largest manufacturer of mobile phones in the world and has goal of 30 % electric vehicles by 2030.
      4. India is currently dependent on China, Taiwan and Japan for import, especially of batteries required for portable electronics.
    4. Indian Army recovered wreckage of a World War II vintage US Air Force aircraft in Roing district of Arunachal Pradesh, buried under five feet of snow. The patrol moved cross country for 30 kilometers in thick jungles and snow covered areas for 8 days to trace out wreckage.
    5. NITI Aayog and Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) released a report on opportunities for automobile sector and government under Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles II (FAME II) scheme, titled ‘India’s Electric Mobility Transformation: Progress to Date and Future Opportunities’.
      1. As per the report, If FAME II and other measures – in public and private space - are successful, India could realize EV sales penetration of 30% of private cars, 70% of commercial cars, 40% of buses and 80% of two and three-wheelers by 2030. Achieving these levels of market share by 2030 could generate cumulative savings of 846million tonnes of CO2 over the total deployedvehicles’ lifetime.
      2. FAME II scheme was notified by Cabinet in February 2019, to accelerate government’s commitment to a clean mobility future .
      3. Vehicles eligible under FAME II scheme can cumulatively save 5.4 million tonnes of oil equivalent over their lifetime worth Rs 17.2 thousand crores.
    6. Australian Navy Held seven-nation Indian Ocean military exercise, starting in Sri Lanka and traveling to Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia and Singapore.
    7. Reliance Nippon Life Asset Management (RNAM) partnered with Google to enable customers of Reliance Mutual Fund to carry out voice-based financial transactions. RNAM is first Indian company to provide conversational interface that would help customers regarding funds transactions.
    8. Department of Revenue imposed anti-dumping duty up to USD 1559 per tonne on import of certain solar cell components (Ethylene Vinyl Acetate Sheet for Solar Module) from China, Malaysia, Saudia Arabia and Thailand for 5 years, to safeguard domestic players against cheap shipments.
    9. Batman will become first Inductee of Comic-On Museum’s Character Hall of Fame, at 50th Annual Comic-Con International in San Diego (USA) in July 2019.
    10. China launched its first second generational data relay satellite named Tianlian II-01, from Long March-3B Carrier rocket. It will provide, data relay, transmission services, measurement and control for China’s manned spacecraft, satellites and carrier rockets.
    11. Government extended deadline for linking PAN with biometric ID Aadhaar by 6 months till September 30, as 6th extension for the same.
    12. Apr 1 - Foundation Day of Reserve Bank of India (RBI). RBI was formed on 1 April 1935. Apr 1 is also observed as Utkal Divas, Foundation Day of Odisha (Formed in 1936).
    13. AIFF President Praful Patel become first Indian to be elected a member of FIFA Executive Council for a four-year period.
    14. Punjab and Haryana High Court Ordered not to mention caste of accused, victims or witnesses in proceedings before court. HC stated that mentioning caste separately in criminal proceedings is a colonial legacy and requires to be stopped henceforth, as the Constitution guarantees a casteless and classless society.
    15. International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has listed Hump-backed Mahseer as Critically Endangered in Red List of Threatened Species. Hump-backed Mahseer is a species of freshwater ray-finned fish and is referred to as tiger of the water, found only in Cauvery river basin including Pambar, Kabini and Bhavani rivers.
    16. Earth Hour 2019 witnessed on March 30, 2019, by turning off lights at 8:30 pm local time for an hour as a call for global action on climate change. The theme of Earth Hour 2019 is #Connect2Earth. Earth Hour is held annually by encouraging individuals, communities, and businesses to turn off non-essential electric lights for one hour, from 8:30 to 9:30 p.
    17. Indian Open Badminton 2019 (New Delhi) -
      1. Men's Singles - Viktor Axelsen (Denmark), Beating India's Kidambi Srikkanth in Final.
      2. Women's Singles - Ratchanok Intanon (Thailand)
      3. Men's Doubles - Chinese Taipei's Lee Yang AND Wang Chi-lin
      4. Women's Doubles - Indonesia's Greysia Polii AND Apriyani Rahayu
      5. Mixed Doubles - China'S Wang Yilü AND Huang Dongping
    18. United Arab Emirates (UAE) Ministry of Education has agreed to issue equivalency for all Indian degrees that match the set criteria , as a relief for Indians in UAE. UAE equivalency on Indian degrees is mandatory for Indians to work in UAE.
      1. Earlier, There was lack of clarity about the fact that some of our universities issue both internal and external mark sheets as part of their degrees. These were not accepted by UAE side, leading to difficulty for Indians seeking jobs in UAE.
      2. UAE also announced new visa guidelines as per which family members of foreign citizens, including Indians, working in the country will now be able to get an "expat visa" if the working relative fulfils income criteria, which includes having a minimum salary of 4,000 Dirhams or 3,000 Dirhams plus accommodation.
    19. 2019 Miami Open Tennis (USA) -
      1. Men's Singles - Roger Federer (Switzerland), Defeated John Ishner (USA). It was Roger Federer's 101st career title. He is now behind only America's Jimmy Connors with 109 career singles titles.
      2. Women's Singles - Ashleigh Barty (Australia), defeated Karolína Plíšková (Czech Republic)
      3. Men's Doubles - USA's Bob Bryan AND Mike Bryan
      4. Women's Doubles - Elise Mertens (Belgium) AND Aryna Sabalenka (Belarus)