This Daily Current Affair Capsule aims to be a time-saving tool for going through relevant news from national dailies and government releases on PIB. Aspirants for UPSC IAS, CDS, SSC CGL, NDA, etc. will find it highly useful to cover for revision and awareness purposes.
National Important Current Affairs – 22 January 2018
■ Basant Panchami and Saraswati Puja are being celebrated in different parts of the country today with religious fervour and traditional gaiety. The festival is celebrated every year on the fifth day of “Phalgun” (the eleventh month of the Hindu calendar). People especially students worship Ma Saraswati, the goddess of wisdom and knowledge on this occasion. In Uttar Pradesh, the fourth bathing festival is being held at Magh Mela in Allahabad. About 70 lakh devotees are expected to take a holy dip at the Sangam, the confluence of Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati rivers on this occasion.
Note that: Basant Panchami is the first of the two spring festivals of Hindus – the other being Holi.
■ Election Commissioner Om Prakash Rawat will be the new Chief Election Commissioner, CEC. A 1977-batch IAS officer from the Madhya Pradesh cadre, Rawat was appointed to the Election Commission in August 2015. He will succeed Achal Kumar Joti, whose term ends today.
Former Finance Secretary Ashok Lawasa has been appointed as the new election commissioner against the vacancy caused by the elevation of Mr Rawat.
■ State of Madhya Pradesh has become the first state to completely implement door-to-door garbage collection in all urban areas, using measures like solid waste management at landfill sites and processing through Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode.
■ The 46th Statehood Day of 3 states Manipur, Tripura and Meghalaya were celebrated on 21st January. These three states attained statehood on this day in the year 1972 under the North-Eastern Areas (Re-organisation) Act, 1971.
Recall that: Meghalaya was a part of Assam before becoming a full-fledged state, while, Manipur and Tripura were Union Territories before the year 1972.
■ Amid a string of rape incidents in Haryana, the state government is going to enact a law providing the death penalty for rapists of girls aged 12 years and below.
■ President Ram Nath Kovind has unveiled a book on heartfulness techniques and principles titled ‘The Heartfulness Way’, authored by Kamlesh Patel & Joshua Pollock. The books reflect the essence of prayer and yogic transmission aimed at deconstructing and demystifying the act of meditation based on meditation tips.
Note that: Heartfulness is an approach to the Raja Yoga system of meditation called Sahaj Marg, founded at the turn of the twentieth century and formalised into the Shri Ram Chandra Mission in 1945 in India.
■ Twenty MLAs of the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Delhi have been disqualified from the Legislative Assembly in the Office of Profit case after President Ram Nath Kovind accepted the recommendation of the Election Commission.
■ The 5-day Ramayana Festival of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries has started in New Delhi. The fest is being organised by Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and is marking 25 years of the Indo-ASEAN ties. The festival seeks to underline the common cultural heritage and India’s friendship with ASEAN nations. Cultural troupes from ASEAN countries will display the shared heritage at Ahmedabad, Hyderabad, Lucknow, Ayodhya and Kolkata also.
International Current Affairs Capsule – 22 January 2018
■ Japan’s Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has successfully launched a new Earth observation satellite, which is equipped with X-band radar, capable of obtaining high-resolution terrain images. The Advanced Satellite with New System Architecture for Observation (ASNARO-2) was launched aboard a third-generation Epsilon rocket from Kagoshima, Japan.
Economics Today’s Current Affair Capsule – 22 January 2018
■ According to a Sanctum Wealth Management report, a Delhi-based professional wealth management company, India is set to become the fastest growing large economy in the world in 2018, eclipsing China, and the country’s equity market will jump to become the 5th largest in the world. When the rest of the world offers low growth and insufficient structural change, India is seen as a reforming economy with the prospect of strong long-term growth. At a time when developed economies are cheering 2-3 percent growth, India is focused on breaching 7.5 per cent.
As per the report, a major factor that has changed is that the domestic buyer now sets market prices. Domestic mutual funds bought equities worth 15.3 billion US Dollar against 8 billion US Dollar by foreign investors in 2017.
■ The government has reduced the Minimum Export Price (MEP), of onions by 150 dollars to 700 dollars per tonne as prices have started to moderate. Directorate General of Foreign Trade, in a notification, has said the rate will remain in force till the 20th of next month.
Note that: MEP of onions was scrapped in December 2015 but brought back in November 2017 to check rising prices of onions.
About the MEP: An MEP is the floor price below which exports are not allowed.
Sports Current Affairs – 22 January 2018
■ Indian Chess Grandmaster Viswanathan Anand played out a draw against Peter Svidler of Russia in the eighth round of Tata Steel Masters which is underway in The Netherlands.
“Current Affairs Questions for UPSC IAS Prelims – 22 January 2018 “
Q1. Who has become the new Governor of Madhya Pradesh?
- A) Rameshwar Thakur
- B) Kizhekethil Chandy
- C) Anandiben Patel
- D) Vajubhai Vala
Q2. Who will lead the Indian delegation at the 48th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF-2018)?
- A) Narendra Modi
- B) Suresh Prabhu
- C) Arun Jaitley
- D) Sushma Swaraj
Q3. Which city to host the 4th edition of India International Science Festival (IISF-2018)?
- A) New Delhi
- B) Chennai
- C) Ahmedabad
- D) Lucknow
Q4. Which Union minister has launched National CSR Data Portal & Corporate Data Portal?
- A) Narendra Modi
- B) Rajnath Singh
- C) Prakash Javadekar
- D) Arun Jaitley
Q5. Which country’s team has won the 5th edition of Blind Cricket World Cup 2018?
- A) Nepal
- B) Bangladesh
- C) Sri Lanka
- D) India
Answer these questions in the comments below. We encourage you to discuss your thoughts on the news and issues mentioned in today’s current affairs post. The idea is to promote healthy discussions on interesting issues to make preparation fun. Have a good day!