This Daily Current Affair Capsule for 26th January aims to be a time-saving tool for going through all relevant news from national dailies and government releases to cover for revision and awareness purposes.
National Important Current Affairs – 26 January 2018
■ The Nation is today celebrating the 69th Republic Day, at a function organized at Rajpath in the national capital where President Ram Nath Kovind took the salute of the parade. Under the custom to host a leader of a foreign country as the chief guest at the parade, this year, in a first, leaders of 10 ASEAN countries are the Chief Guests. In another first, the ASEAN flag will fly in the sky over Rajpath for the first time on a Republic Day. F
■ Bharat Parv event is being organized by the Government of India from 26th to 31st January 2017, as part of the Republic Day Celebrations by the Ministry of Tourism acting as the nodal Ministry for the event.
The Bharat Parv is a national festival showcasing the country’s diverse culture, cuisines, handicrafts and highlighting a progressive India. The objective is to generate a patriotic mood, promote the rich cultural diversity of the country, ensure wider participation of the general public and to popularise the idea of “Ek Bharat Shreshta Bharat”.
■ President has approved 390 Gallantry awards and other Defence decorations to Armed Forces personnel and others on the eve of the 69th Republic Day celebrations.
The gallantry awards include one Ashok Chakra, one Kirti Chakra, 14 Shaurya Chakras, 28 Param Vishisht Seva Medals and four Uttam Yudh Seva Medals.
Besides, 10 Yudh Seva Medals, 86 Sena Medals (Gallantry), three Vayu Sena Medals (Gallantry), one Bar to Vishisht Seva Medal and 121 Vishisht Seva Medals have been announced.
- India’s highest peacetime military decoration Ashoka Chakra, has been conferred upon Air Force Corporal Jyoti Prakash Nirala, posthumously.He made supreme sacrifice, exhibiting most conspicuous gallantry in fighting with terrorists.
- The Kirti Chakra will be given to Major Vijayant Bist of the 4th Battalion the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry.
- Shaurya Chakra will be given to Major Akhil Raj of 55th Battalion of the Rashtriya Rifles.
- Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry) will be awarded to Squadron Leader Kamal Sharma.
■ The President has approved the awards of 3 Padma Vibhushan, 9 Padma Bhushan and 73 Padma Shri on the eve of the 69th Republic Day. Prominent citizens from each of the 10 ASEAN member countries are among the 16 foreigners named for the Award. Padma Vibhushan and the Padma Bhushan are the second and third highest civilian awards of the country respectively.
- The second highest civilian award Padma Vibhushan has been conferred upon, Well-known classical singer Ustad Ghulam Mustafa Khan, ace music composer Ilaiyaraaja and Litterateur P Parameswaran.
- In sports personalities, former India cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and multiple world champion cueist Pankaj Advani have been conferred with the third-highest civilian award, Padma Bhushan.
- Besides the duo, 2017 World Weightlifting Champion Saikhom Mirabai Chanu and former Asian Games gold medallist tennis player Somdev Devvarman have been conferred with the Padma Shri.
■ In a bid to make low-cost medicines more accessible, the health ministry is working to increase the number of AMRIT pharmacy stores by 4 times by this year end from the existing 111 outlets under the Affordable Medicines and Reliable Implants for Treatment (AMRIT) scheme. The flagship programme of the Union Health ministry aims to provide affordable life-saving cancer, cardiac drugs and medical disposables. The AMRIT pharmacies offer an average discount of 63% on medicines.
The AMRIT programme was launched in 2015 and is being implemented through mini-ratna PSU HLL Lifecare Ltd (HLL) to dispense the medicines.
■ The 7th Asia Steel International Conference (ASIC-2018) will be held in Bhubaneswar, Odisha from February 6 to 9. The conference will be held by Tata Steel, in association with the Indian Institute of Metals. It is held every three years and provides a platform for an exchange of knowledge on various aspects of the global steel industry. The last Asia Steel conference was held in 2015 at Yokohama, Japan.
The 2018 conference will address and focus on different challenges faced by the steel industry – optimising specific consumption of raw materials, especially coke and iron ore, how to use low-grade raw materials, along with decreasing the energy consumption in various iron-making and steel making operations.
■ The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health Journal, in a study, has argued that adolescence ends at the age of 24 years, not the previously thought 19 years. It has noted that “rather than age 10-19 years, a definition of 10-24 years corresponds more closely with adolescent growth and popular understandings of this life phase”. An expanded and more inclusive definition of adolescence is essential for developmentally appropriate framing of laws, social policies, and service systems.’
Adolescence is the phase of life stretching between childhood and adulthood which encompasses elements of biological growth and major social role transitions, both of which have changed in the past century. Hence, its definition has long posed a conundrum.
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines an adolescent as an individual between the age of 10 and 19 years, and youth as individuals in the age group of 15-24 years.
The new proposed definition of adolescents falls within the definition of ‘young people’, as per the WHO, that is individuals between the age of 10 and 19 years.
The study explains that earlier puberty has accelerated the onset of adolescence in nearly all populations, while understanding of continued growth has lifted its endpoint age well into the 20s. In parallel, delayed timing of role transitions, including completion of education, marriage, and parenthood, continue to shift popular perceptions of when adulthood begins.
■ The Ministry of Women and Child Development in collaboration with National Informatics Centre (NIC), has launched the Management Information System (MIS) portal for Anganwadi Services Training Programme. The Management Information System (MIS) portal has been developed for submitting applications/estimates by NGOs for carrying out Anganwadi Services (ICDS) Training through AWTCs/MLTCs. The first phase of the portal will enable NGOs to submit a proposal to the respective States/UTs.
The Anganwadi Services Training Programme runs under the Umbrella Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Scheme which is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme and the overall administration, management and monitoring of the implementation of the Scheme are being done by the respective State Government/UT Administration.
International Current Affairs Capsule – 26 January 2018
■ The ASEAN-India Commemorative Summit came out with a comprehensive joint statement, titled Delhi Declaration, issued after the plenary session, targeting terrorism and agreeing to uphold freedom in the maritime domain. Counter-terrorism, identity security, military cooperation, and bilateral financial support were discussed in among the leaders from ASEAN countries on the sidelines of the ASEAN-India Commemorative Summit held to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the establishment of sectoral dialogue between two sides.
Focusing on the presence of the Islamic State and other forms of radicalism in the region, a supported a common approach to counter-terrorism and has sought a “comprehensive approach to combat terrorism through close cooperation by disrupting and countering terrorists, terrorist groups and networks, including by countering cross-border movement of terrorists and foreign terrorist fighters and misuse of Internet including social media by terror entities.”
■ Two Macaque Monkeys have become the first primates to be cloned using the Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer (SCNT) technique, the same approach that produced Dolly the sheep, which was the first mammal cloned from an adult somatic cell. This proves that the impediment to cloning of primates has been overcomes. Now, such cloned primates can play an useful role in clinical trials to test drug efficacy.
Economics Today’s Current Affair Capsule – 26 January 2018
■ Government has collected 86,703 crore rupees under GST in the month of December. Finance Ministry has said, one crore taxpayers have been registered under GST till now, of them over 17 lakh are Composition Dealers which are required to file returns every quarter. A total of over 8 lakh returns were filed by Composition Dealers for the July-September, quarter, paying a total of around 336 crore rupees as GST.
Sports Current Affairs – 26 January 2018
■ Windies’ all-rounder Kieron Pollard has become the first cricketer to play 400 T20 matches, has achieved this feat while playing for Melbourne Renegades against Adelaide Strikers in the BBL.
■ Ursula K. Le Guin, the award-winning science fiction and American author, has passed away at the age of 88 years. She had explored feminist themes. Her best-known works are the 1969 science fiction novel “Left Hand of Darkness”, which has explore themes of gender by featuring characters with no fixed sex, and the 1968 coming-of-age story “A Wizard of Earthsea”.
“Current Affairs Questions for UPSC IAS Prelims – 26 January 2018 “
Q1. What is the theme of the 8th National Voters’ Day (NVD-2018)?
- A) Ethical Voting
- B) Empowering young and future events
- C) Accessible Elections
- D) Authentic Elections & Voting
Q2. What is the India’s rank in the 2018 Environmental Performance Index (EPI)?
- A) 168th
- B) 155th
- C) 135th
- D) 177th
Q3. India has signed how much amount of loan agreement with World Bank (WB) to improve access to water supply in Uttarakhand?
- A) $220 million
- B) $120 million
- C) $320 million
- D) $420 million
Q4. Which city is hosting the 2018 India-ASEAN commemorative summit?
- A) Ahmedabad
- B) New Delhi
- C) Kochi
- D) Chandigarh
Q5. Which state government has signed sister-state agreement with Canton of Zurich?
- A) Himachal Pradesh
- B) Andhra Pradesh
- C) Karnataka
- D) Kerala
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!