Current Affairs January 1, 2019 (English)

Current Affairs and GK Today January 1st 2019 
International Affairs
Pacific Island Nation Palau bans ‘Reef-Toxic’ Sunscreen
  • Palau's pioneering ban on "reef-toxic" sunscreens takes effect today. The tiny Pacific island nation introduced strict environmental measures.
  • Palau is renowned for its marine life and is regarded as one of the world's best diving destinations. But, the government is concerned this poses an environmental cost.
  • From New Year's day, any reef-toxic sunscreen imported or sold in Palau will be confiscated and the owner will be fined. Along with the ban, Palau's much-touted marine sanctuary came into effect on January 1.
  • This closes 80 per cent of its exclusive economic zone to fishing and other marine activities including mining and shark finning.
  • It follows Palau's establishment of the world's first shark sanctuary in 2009.

National Affairs
  • PM Modi is to release the fourth instalment of Pradhan Mantri Kisan Yojana in Tumakuru, Karnataka. The Prime Minister will also confer “Krishi Karmany
RPF renamed as Indian Railways Protection Force Service 
  • The Railways Ministry has renamed Railway Protection Force (RPF) as Indian Railway Protection Force Service (IRPFS). The ministry has also accorded Group A status to RPF.
India’s first Chief of Defence Staff: General Bipin Rawat
  • Chief of Defence Staff
    • General Bipin Rawat assumed office of the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) on January 1, 2020, at New Delhi. 
  • Role of CDS
    • As the CDS, General Rawat will be the Principal Military Advisor to the Raksha Mantri on all Tri-Services matters. 
    • He will also head Department of Military Affairs (DMA). 
    • The CDS will have a key role in ensuring optimum utilisation of allocated budget, usher in more synergy in procurement, training &operations of the Services through joint planning and integration. 
    • The CDS will facilitate indigenisation of weapons and equipment to the maximum extent possible while formulating the overall defence acquisition plan for the three Services.
  • Indian Defence Staffs as on 1.1.2020
    1. Chief of Defence Staff: General Bipin Rawat 
    2. Chief of the Naval Staff: Admiral Karambir Singh
    3. Chief of the Air Staff: Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauria ;
    4. Chief of the Army Staff: General Manoj Mukund Naravanewere.
Air Marshal Vibhas Pande VSM assumes charge as Air Officer-in-Charge Maintenance
  • Air Marshal Vibhas Pande VSM has taken over as Air Officer-in-Charge Maintenance of Indian Air Force with effect from 01 Jan 2020.
Air Marshal MSG Menon VSM assumes charge as Air Officer-in-Charge Administration
  • Air Marshal MSG Menon VSM takes over as Air Officer-in-Charge Administration of Indian Air Force with effect from 01 Jan 2020.
Vinod Kumar Yadav reappointment as Chairman, Railway Board 
  • Shri Vinod Kumar Yadav, IRSEE (1980 Batch) has assumed charge on 01.01.2020 after being reappointed as Chairman, Railway Board, in the rank of Ex-Officio Principal Secretary to Government of India.
December 2019 GST Revenue collection - ₹ 1,03,184 Crore
  • The gross GST revenue collected in the month of December, 2019 is ₹ 1,03,184crore of which CGST is ₹ 19,962crore, SGST is ₹ 26,792crore, IGST is ₹ 48,099crore (including ₹ 21,295crore collected on imports) and Cess is ₹ 8,331crore (including ₹ 847crore collected on imports). 
  • The total number of GSTR 3B Returns filed for the month of November up to 31stDecember, 2019 is 81.21lakh.
  • The GST revenues during the month of December, 2019 from domestic transactions has shown an impressive growth of 16% over the revenue during the month of December, 2018.
  • The government has settled ₹ 21,814crore to CGST and ₹ 15,366crore to SGST from IGST as regular settlement. 
  • The total revenue earned by Central Government and the State Governments after regular settlement in the month of December, 2019 is ₹ 41,776 crore for CGST and ₹ 42,158 crore for the SGST.
Defence and Space

Gaganyaan Mission 2022 - 4 IAF Personnel selected for Training
  • ISRO Chairman Dr. K Sivan has announced that four air men from Indian Air Force have been identified for India's first manned mission to space, Gaganyan.
  • 4 IAF personnel selected for training in Russia from third week of January 2020, for Gaganyaan Mission to be launched in 2022.

Chandrayan-3 Mission
  • Chandrayan-3 mission has been approved by the Government. This will be launched without an orbiter. 
  • The lander and rover will be soft landing in the south pole of lunar surface. It will carry out experiments that were planned during Chandrayan-2.
India's Second Satellite Launch Station-Tuticorin (Kulasekharapatnam)
  • India's second satellite launch station will come up in Tuticorin (Kulasekharapatnam) in Tamil Nadu for which 2300 acre land will be acquired, initially from here small satellites will be launched .
Khelo India Youth Games 2020
  • Third Khelo India youth games to be held in Guwahati in January 2020.
  • The third Khelo India youth games will be held in Guwahati between 10th and 22nd of January 2020. 
  • Six thousand five hundred athletes from 37 teams will take part in the event. 
  • The biggest multidisciplinary games ever held in the country. 
  • Cycling and lawn ball have been introduced as new disciplines in the games.
  • The opening ceremony of the third Khelo India Youth Games will take place at the Indira Gandhi Stadium in Guwahati on January 10 before the athletes take part in their respective events in full flow.
Koneru Humpy becomes Women's World Rapid Chess Champion 2019
  •  Indian grandmaster Koneru Humpy has become the 2019 Women's World Rapid Champion. 
  • She defeated China's Lei Tingjie in a dramatic final in Moscow, Russia. After losing the opening game, Humpy made an impressive comeback and collected nine points each in 12 rounds to be tied with Tingjie.
  • This is a significant triumph for Humpy who is India’s best-ever women’s chess player. She is more at ease in the classical format and was clearly trying to take her skills in the rapid format to a new level. 
  • Magnus Carlsen Champion: Norway's Magnus Carlsen claimed the men's title.
Udayan Mane TATA Steel Tour Championhip title 2019
  • In Golf, Udayan Mane produced a flawless seven-under 65 on the final day to claim a thrilling one-shot win at the season-ending TATA Steel Tour Championship in Jamshedpur.
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