December 2014 Current Affairs List

December 2014 Current Affairs List
 
1-December
Current Affairs Global - 1 December 2014

  1. World Aids Day is observed today (1stDecember) to raise awareness about the disease and the pandemic caused by the spread of the HIV infection.As of now, there are an estimated 35.3 million people living with HIV and between 1981 and 2012, Aids has killed 36 million people worldwide.


Theme for 2014 is -Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS-free generation- to highlight the need to for governments and health officials, NGOs and individuals to address Aids prevention and treatment.

  1. UN Climate summit started in Peru from today which is attended by officials from nearly 190 countries. The leaders willnegotiate on a new ambitious and bindingdealto cut global carbon emissions, in the last chance to reach on a historic deal to be signed next year in Paris. As the Negotiations have been going on for last 20 years, the UN continues to bring its member countries together in order to curb the damaging effects of coal burning and gasoline use, among other sources of pollution.


Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar leads India's 17- member delegation at the summit to negotiate terms for the final agreement to be signed in Paris, which will take effect in 2020.

  1. Leftist cancer specialist Tabare Vasquez was elected as the President of Uruguay after winning the run-off presidential election easily.He defeated his centre-right opponent, Luis Lacalle Pou in the election. He led the country during 2006-10 period earlier.


He had secured 52.8% votes while his centre-right opponent Luis Lacalle Pou of the National Party received only 40.5% votes. He will succeed President Jose Mujica who was barred by law from running for a second consecutive term.

  1. Mascot for the 2016 European football championship was named as Super Victor yesterday. The name for the cartoon character boy dressed in blue and white as a footballer with a red cape and number 16 jersey was preferred to Driblou and Goalix. Euro 2016 is scheduled to be held in France in June-July 2016.


Current Affairs India - 1 December 2014

  1. The Economic Times Awards for Corporate Excellence was announced yesterday during a ceremony help in Mumbai. Dilip Shanghvi was chosen for the Business Leader of the Year while UK Sinha won the Business Reformer of the Year award.


India-s largest IT services company Tata Consultancy Services received the Company of the Year award while Adani Ports & SEZ received the Emerging Company of the Year award.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was awarded with the Global Indian of the Year award, Yusuf Hamied received the Lifetime Achievement award and Dhiraj Rajaram and Chandra Shekhar Ghosh won the Entrepreneur of the Year award. Online Restaurant portal Zomato received the Startup of the Year award and Tata Steel received the Corporate Citizen of the Year.

  1. India-s factory output improved in November as the HSBC compiled Purchasing Manager Index (PMI) for manufacturing sector jumped to 21-month high. The PMI index, an important parameter to judge the performance of the sector, jumped to 53.3 in Novembercompared to 51.6 in previous month of October. Any reading higher than 50 indicates growth. This 21-month high PMI index confirms strong growth for Indian manufacturing sector.

  2. India-s eight core sector grew by 6.3% in the month of October due to higher production growth of coal, refinery products and electricity sectors. This is the higher core sector growth in last 4 months. The eight core industries had contracted by 0.1% in October last year, and grew by 1.9% in the previous month.

  3. Former Indian football captain Baichung Bhutia has been conferred with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Hall of Fame Award yesterday. He was awarded with the award by FIFA President Sepp Blatter in Manila, Philippines yesterday on the occasion of AFC-s 60th anniversary. With this award, he became the only Indian to win the award and make in the list of AFC's Hall of Fame.


Former Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Jarbom Gamlin passed away at a hospital in Gurgaon on Sunday night. He was 53. He was suffering from liver thrombosis. He was president of the All Arunachal Pradesh Students Union (AAPSU) for three years from 1981.
 
2-December
Current Affairs India - 2 December 2014

  1. Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee-s birthday on 25thDecember will be observed as national -Good Governance Day-, as per Prime Minister Narendra Modi while addressing party MPs at the meeting of the BJP Parliamentary Party today. The Prime Minister also asked all party MPs to highlight all BJP-run Governments and bodies across the country as models of good governance on the day.

  2. India successfully test-fired its nuclear-capable strategic ballistic missile Agni-IV with a strike range of nearly 4,000 km, from a test range off the Odisha coast today. This was also the fourth trial of Agni-IV missile. The test was successfully conducted by the specially formed Strategic Force Command (SFC).


Agni-IV missile is equipped with state of the art Avionics, 5th generation On Board Computer and distributed architecture. It has the latest features to correct and guide itself for in-flight disturbances.

  1. Senior Congress leader A R Antulay passed away at the Breach Candy hospital today after a prolonged illness.He was 85. He was a former Maharashtra Chief Minister and a Minister in the UPA-I government.

  2. Bollywood actor and comedian Deven Verma passed away due to cardiac arrest in Mumbai today. He was 77.He was best known for his comic performance in Khatta Meetha, Gol Maal, Angoor and Andaz Apna Apna movies.


RBI keeps repo rate unchanged at 8% during its monetary policy review today; GDP growth target kept unchanged at 5.5%
RBI Governor Dr Raghuram Rajan has kept key policy rates unchanged during its fifth bi-monthly monetary policy review meeting today. Repo rate, the rate at which RBI lends money to banks for the short term, was kept unchanged at 8% while the Reverse Repo Rate, the rate at which RBI borrows money from banks, was kept unchanged at 7%. The cash reserve ratio for banks has been kept unchanged at 4%.
The RBI said that it will continue to provide liquidity under overnight repos at 0.25% of bank-wise NDTL at the LAF repo rate, and liquidity under 7-day and 14-day term repos of up to 0.75% of NDTL of the banking system through auctions. The reverse repo rate under the LAF will remain unchanged at 7% and the marginal standing facility (MSF) rate and the Bank Rate have been kept unchanged at 9%.
The RBI has also kept the statutory liquidity ratio (SLR) of scheduled commercial banks unchanged at 22% of their net demand and time liabilities (NDTL). Statutory liquidity ratio (SLR) refers amount that the commercial banks require to maintain with the RBI in the form of gold or government approved securities (G-Secs or bonds) before lending.
Reserve Bank Governor projected inflation target at 4%, plus or minus 2% and maintained that the GDP growth in the current fiscal year at 5.5%.
 
3-December
Current Affairs Global - 3 December 2014

  1. International Day of Persons with Disabilities is observed across the world today (3rdDecember) to raise awareness of the same. The theme of 2014 is -Sustainable development: the promise of technology- with the aim of improving technology and making it more widely available to those living with disabilities.


As per UN, this year the International Day of Persons with Disabilities will focus on the role of technology in Disaster Risk Reduction and Emergency Responses, Creating Enabling Working Environments and Disability-Inclusive Sustainable Development Goals.

  1. Denmark retained its No 1 rank among 175 countries as the least corrupt country measured by the corruption index, as per the report published by the Transparency International India (TII) with a CPI score of 92 while North Korea and Somalia were ranked as the most corrupt countries with CPI score of 8.


Current Affairs India - 3 December 2014

  1. Senior IPS officer Anil Kumar Sinha was appointed as the new director of the Central investigation agency CBI yesterday.He will succeed former director Ranjit Sinha who retired recently. Anil Kumar Sinha, a 1979 batch IPS officer of Bihar cadre, was the special director in CBI.


The appointments committee of the Cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, cleared the name of Anil Kumar Sinha. He will be in charge for 2 years from his date of taking charge.

  1. The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved Regional Rural Banks (Amendment) Bill, 2013. This bill was approved to enhance authorized and issued capital to strengthen capital base of RRBs and to bring flexibility in the shareholding between Union Government, State Government and Sponsor Bank.


Union Cabinet has also decided that non-official directors- term which are appointed by the Union Government will be fixed and should not exceed three years.

  1. India has been ranked at 85thamong 175 countries in terms of corruption index, as per the report published by theTransparency International India (TII) today which is slightly better than 85th rank in previous year. According to the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) report by TII, the CPI score for India was increased by 2 points in 2014 compared to previous year.


Among India-s neighbor countries, China moved to 100th place compared to 8th rank last year while Pakistan and Nepal moved to 126th position. Bangladesh, Bhutan and Sri Lanka were ranked at 145th, 30th and 85th position respectively.
 
4-December
Current Affairs India - 4 December 2014

  1. BJP and Shiv Sena have announced their alliance today during a press conference, making the Maharashtra government as a stable now.12 Shiv Sena MLAs will be inducted as ministers in the BJP led Government tomorrow. 12 MLAs from BJP would also be made ministers in the State which will make total number of ministers as 29.


Earlier both the parties broke their 25-year old alliance just before the assembly election in October this year. This decision will help both the parties to reform their alliance and jointly fight in all the upcoming elections in the state.

  1. The Union Finance Ministry has constituted a High Level Committee (HLC) headed by former Chief Economic Advisor (CEA) Ashok Lahiri in order to interact with trade and industry on tax-related issues on a regular basis.Other two members of the committee are retired member of the Settlement Commission Sidhartha Pradhan and retired DG (Audit) of the Customs and Central Excise Gautam Ray.

  2. Indian PSU Bank,Canara Bank has been awarded with the Niryat Bandhu Silver Trophy in the banks- category for its support services rendered for promotion of exports. President Pranab Mukherjee handed over the trophy to Canara Bank Executive Director VS Krishna Kumar in Delhi on 2ndDecember.

  3. Former Supreme Court Judge and famous social activist Justice V.R. Krishna Iyer passed away in Kochi today. He was 100.He was a member of Kerala Legislative Assembly in 1957 and served as the Home Minister in the first Communist Ministry in Kerala.


He was appointed as a Judge in Kerala High Court and then as Law Commission Chairman in 1971. He was appointed as Supreme Court Judge in 1973.

  1. The BCCI Selection Committee has published the list of 30 probables for the next World Cup 2015 to be held in Australia and New Zealand. India will try to defect the world champion title in the world cup. Senior cricketers and players of 2011 World Cup team Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh (Man of the series in the last world cup), Gautam Gambhir, Harbhajan Singh and Zaheer Khan have been dropped from the list.


Kashmir all-rounder Parvez Rasool, Uttar Pradesh spinner Kuldeep Yadav, batsmen Manish Pandey and Kedar Jadhav and spinner Akshar Patel have been included in the list of 30 probables. The selection of final 15 players from amongst the 30 probables would be done next month.
The 30 World Cup 2015 probables are: Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Robin Uthappa, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Ambati Rayudu. Kedar Jadhav, Manoj Tiwary, Manish Pandey, Wriddhiman Saha, Sanju Samson, R Ashwin, Parvez Rasool, Karn Sharma. Amit Mishra, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohd Shami, Umesh Yadav, V Aaron. Dhawal Kulkarni, Stuart Binny, Mohit Sharma, Ashoke Dinda, Kuldeep Yadav and Murali Vijay.

  1. Indian umpire S Ravi has been chosen in the list of a 25-member match officials for ICC ODI World Cup 2015 to be held in Australia and New Zealand.The team includes five officials from the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees, 12 umpires from the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Umpires and eight umpires from the Emirates International Panel of ICC Umpires.


The match referees are David Boon, Chris Broad, Jeff Crowe, Ranjan Madugalle and Roshan Mahanama. The elite panel umpires in the list are Aleem Dar, Billy Bowden, Bruce Oxenford, Ian Gould, Kumar Dharmasena, Marais Erasmus, Nigel Llong, Paul Reiffel, Richard Illingworth, Richard Kettleborough, Rod Tucker and Steve Davis.

  1. East Zone won the Deodhar Trophy cricket tournament after defeating West Zone by 24 runs in the final match held at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai yesterday.


East Zone won the toss and while batting first they scored 269 runs for 8 wickets in 50 overs. While chasing, West Zone were all out for 245 runs. Pacer Ashok Dinda bagged 4 wickets and was awarded with the man of the match award.
 
5-December
Current Affairs India - 5 December 2014

  1. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was named -Asian of the Year- by editors of Singapore-s leading daily, The Straits Times today.As per the daily, -Despite being relatively new to the job, he has already made a mark on Asia, reaching out to neighbours and receiving national leaders including Xi Jinping of China and Tony Abbott of Australia.-


Modi has got India and the world excited about his country-s prospects again. He has given his people a renewed sense of direction and purpose, and there are hopeful signs that he is minded to using his strong mandate to good effect in one of Asia-s major powers.

  1. Indian pharmacy company Aurobindo Pharma has completed the acquisition of US based nutritional supplement maker, Natrol Inc.It had emerged as the highest bidder last month to acquire the assets of Natrol under the auction process by the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District for USD 132.5 million. This acquisition will help Aurobindo Pharma to position itself in the US nutraceuticals space and expand its business in the region.


 
6-December
 
7-December
 
8-December
Current Affairs Global - 8 December 2014

  1. The European Central Bank (ECB) has kept the benchmark interest rate unchanged at 0.05% during its monetary policy review meeting last week.It has also announced some more stimulus measures to boost economic growth in the euro zone.


The Bank of England has also kept the benchmark interest rate unchanged at record low of 0.5% for another month. It has kept the interest rate at record low of 0.5% since March 2009. It has also decided to maintain its quantitative easing programme at the 375 billion pounds which was already spent.

  1. ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 has selected MRF Ltd of India as its global partner for the world cup to be held in Australia and New Zealand next year.After being the partner now MRF will have access to multiple branding opportunities at all game venues during the Cricket World Cup and at other promotional events held by the ICC across the world.

  2. The International Cricket Council (ICC) has suspended Pakistan off-spin bowler Mohammad Hafeez from bowling in international cricket with immediate effect for illegal bowling action. The decision came after he failed to pass the bio-mechanic test conducted for his bowling action. The test revealed that all deliveries of Hafeez exceeded permitted 15 degrees level of tolerance (by which the arm is allowed to bend).

  3. Sri Lanka batsman Kumar Sangakkara became the fourth batsman to complete 13000 One-Day Internationals (ODI) runs last week while playing against England. He scored 13000 runs in 386 matches. India-s batting legend Sachin Tendulkar holds the record ODI runs of 18426 in 463 ODIs followed by Australia-s Ricky Ponting with 13704 runs from 375 ODIs and Sri Lanka-s Sanath Jayasuriya with 13430 runs from 445 matches.


Current Affairs India - 8 December 2014

  1. India's latest communication satellite GSAT-16 was successfully placed in into a Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO) by Ariane 5 rocket on 7thDecember. It was launched successfully after being deferred twice due to bad weather. GSAT-16 carries total of 48 communication transponders which is largest by a communication satellite developed by the ISRO.

  2. The Delhi Government banned all operations by San Francisco bases private cab service Uber with immediate effect and also blacklisted it from providing any transport service in NCR after an alleged rape incident in an Uber cab by its driver.This move came after the police found the driver, who was arrested yesterday near Matura, as a repeated offender and was jailed in 2011 in another sexual assault case.


Transport Department has cancelled the permit and registration certificate of the taxi (DL1YD 7910) and driving licence of the accused.

  1. Arun Duggal has been appointed as non-executive Chairman of Credit Rating Agency ICRA Limited last week after he was elected unilaterally by the ICRA Board.Before that, he was an independent director on the Board of ICRA Ltd. He will succeed Pranab Kumar Choudhury.

  2. South Korea based electronics giant Samsung has appointed Pranav Mistry as Global Vice-President. He is currently working as the Vice-President of Samsung-s U.S. research unit in the Silicon Valley and heads its Think Tank team.


With this he will be the youngest person at age 33 to be elevated to head the Samsung Electronics in a recent management reshuffle involving about 350 people. Earlier, he played a big role in launching Samsung's Galaxy Gear in September 2013.

  1. Famous Carnatic vocalist Nedunuri Krishnamurthy passed away today at his Visakhapatnam residence. He was 87. The Music Academy, Madras conferred on him the most prestigious title of -Sangeeta Kalanidhi- in the year 1991. He has been appointed as the -Asthana Vidwan- of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams and also of Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham.

  2. National Rifle Association of India President Raninder Singh has been elected as member of the all-powerful International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF)'s Executive Committee last week. With this he has become the first Indian to be elected member of the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF)'s Executive Committee in its 107-year history.


While contesting his first election, Raninder received 22 out of 25 votes in favor in the General Assembly meeting held at Munich,Germany.

  1. Indian Blind Cricket team under the captaincy of Shekar Naik won the fourth edition of the Blind Cricket World Cup (BCWC) 2014 by defeating defending champions Pakistan in the final match played at Wally Wilson Cricket Ground in Cape Town, South Africa on 7thDecember.


While batting first, Pakistan scored 389 runs for the loss of 7 wickets in 40 overs. India managed to reach the target in 39.4 overs after losing 5 wickets. Sri Lanka, Australia, Bangladesh, England and hosts South Africa took part in the fourth edition of Blind Cricket World Cup.
 
9-December
Current Affairs India - 9 December 2014

  1. IndianPrime Minister Narendra Modi, who did not make it to the final eight selected by TIME magazine for the annual -Person of the Year- title, has secured No 1 rank by its readers in an online poll conducted by the magazine. He has been named winner of the readers- poll forTIME -Person of the Year-, after receiving more than 16% votes from total five million votes.


Protesters in Ferguson, who were demonstrating against a grand jury-s decision not to indict white police officer Darren Wilson who shot and killed unarmed black teenager Michael Brown in August ranked second with 9% of the votes. Hong Kong protest leader Joshua Wong, Nobel Peace Prize-winner Malala Yousafzai and the doctors and nurses treating Ebola secured third, fourth and fifth position respectively in the list.

  1. The International Enterprise Singapore, has signed an MoU with Infrastructure Corporation of Andhra Pradesh to design master plan of Andhra Pradesh-s new capital around Vijayawada. It will submit its -total vision- report within six weeks.


Andhra Pradesh and Singapore governments signed an MoU last night in the presence of Naidu and Singapore-s second minister for Trade and Industry S Iswaran, to cooperate in the master-planning, development and construction of the new capital as a modern, vibrant, sustainable and smart capital city.

  1. Bollywood star Aamir Khan has been signed by the road transport ministry as its safety ambassador with the aim of reducing number of accidents and increase awareness about safety rules on Indian roads. He's also engaged in the -Atithi Devo Bhava- campaign with the tourism ministry.

  2. Domestic passenger car sales were increased by 9.52% to 1,56,445 units in November compared with 1,42,849 units sold in the same month last year while Motorcycle sales were declined by 3.05% to 8,53,254 units in November compared to 8,80,078 units in the same month last year, as per data released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM).Vehicle sales across categories were increased by 5.03% to 16,03,292 units in November compared to 15,26,514 units in same month last year.

  3. Indian player Dev Shah has become the world champion in the Under-7 category in the World Schools Chess Championships held recently at Juiz de Fora in Brazil.With this he has become the youngest rated chess player from India.


 
10-December
Current Affairs India - 10 December 2014

  1. Richard Rahul Verma was unanimously confirmed as the next US Ambassador to India by the Senate yesterday.With this, he will become the first-ever Indian-American to hold the post. His nomination was approved by the Senate by a voice vote, which indicates bi-partisan support to the Indo-US ties and showing his popularity among Senators.

  2. The Central Government has asked all the States to stop operations of all unregistered taxi services for now till next notifications. Home Minister Rajnath Singh said this after a female passenger was raped by a driver contracted to US online cab company Uber in New Delhi. New Delhi had already announced to ban all unregistered internet taxi firms after the incident. Other states are also expected to New Delhi to ban all unregistered taxi services.

  3. Founder and Chairman of Wipro Azim Premji has been awarded with the Swiss Ambassador's Award for his inspirational and socially responsible leadership in Mumbai.Switzerland ambassador Linus von Castelmur praised Azim Premji as an inspiration of the corporate world who has maintained values such as tolerance, honesty and modesty. The Award was constituted in 2010 and it recognizes individuals who have contributed to the promotion of Indo-Swiss relations or have stood out for their exceptional role in society and industry.

  4. Indian Boxer Sarita Devi finally received her Asian Games bronze medal which she had refused at the victory ceremonyduring the 17th Asian Games in Incheon earlier this year. The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) Secretary General Rajeev Mehta presented the medal to her at the IOA Headquarters today.


She was provisionally suspended by the World Boxing federation, Amateur International Boxing Association (AIBA), as she refused to accept her medal following her controversial loss in the semifinal of the Asian Games.

  1. Atletico de Kolkata secured semifinal berth of the Indian Super League football tournament currently being held after finishing the league match draw with FC Goa 1-1.Atletico de Kolkata will play against FC Goa in the first semifinal match while Chennaiyin FC play against Kerala Blasters FC in the other semifinal match.


Current Affairs Global - 10 December 2014

  1. Global Human Rights Day is observed today (10thDecember) across the world to raise awareness about Human rights. The theme of 2014 Human Rights Day is-Human Rights 365- which was based on the idea that every day is Human Rights Day and everyone is entitled to basic human rights day.


The date was chosen to honour the United Nations General Assembly's adoption and proclamation of Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) on 10th December 1948. First Human Rights Day was observed in 1950.

  1. India's Kailash Satyarthi and Pakistan's Malala Yousafzai jointly received the Nobel Peace Prize at a ceremony in Oslo on 10thDecember. Both of them shared the USD 1.1 million prize. Mr Satyarthi said in his acceptance speech "I represent the sounds of silence, the voices of innocence" after receiving the prestigious award.


Renowned artistes from India and Pakistan - Sarod Maestro Amjad Ali Khan and singer Rahat Fateh Ali Khan - performed in the ceremony.

  1. US based think tank IntelCenter has released Country Threat Index (CTI) which ranks 45 countries in terms of terrorist and rebel threat to a country.The Country Threat Index (CTI) was prepared based on the data related to the volume of terrorist and rebel alerts, messaging traffic, videos, photos, incidents and the number of killed and injured in a country over the past 30 days.


As per the ranking, there are total 45 countries with a CTI greater than zero. Iraq got the worst rank in the list followed by Nigeria, Somalia and Afghanistan while Pakistan got 8th rank in the list.

  1. German Chancellor Angela Merkel was re-elected unopposed as chief of Conservative party yesterday. This post is the highest post in the largest economy of Europe and also termed as the Europe's most powerful leader. Merkel said her policies as leader of Germany promoted security and stability and lived up to Germany's responsibilities in the world.

  2. Inflation in China, measured by Consumer Price Index, dropped to 1.4% in November compared to 1.6% in October.This is the lowest inflation in last 5 years, earlier inflation dropped to this level in November 2009. Producer prices also dropped to 2.7% compared to same period last year.


 
11-December
Current Affairs Global - 11 December 2014

  1. Ebola fighters including doctors, nurses and other health officials who have been helping all the Ebola victims in West Africa region so far were collectively named as'Person of the Year' for 2014 by Time Magazine. They have been awarded for their "tireless acts of courage and mercy" and for "risking, persisting, sacrificing and saving", as per the magazine.


"The rest of the world can sleep at night because a group of men and women are willing to stand and fight. For tireless acts of courage and mercy, for buying the world time to boost its defences, for risking, for persisting, for sacrificing and saving, the Ebola fighters are Time's 2014 Person of the Year," Editor Nancy Gibbs said explaining the publication's reasoning behind the choice.

  1. The United Nations has projected world economic growth at 3.1% for next year 2015 and 3.3% for the year 2016. It also said thatgrowth will be uneven in some regions in its annual economic report published yesterday. As per UN, the world-s largest economy, USA economy will grow by 2.8% in 2015 and 3.1% in 2016 due to improved business investments.


It has also said in its report that growth in the world's least developed economies will exceed the global average growth rate and strong household consumption will help East Asia to grow at the fastest pace. It has projected Indian economy to grow at 5.9% in 2015 and 6.3% in 2016.

  1. Bhutan became the 181st member of Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) this week after it has fulfilled all of its membership requirements to become the member of MIGA.MIGA is the political risk insurance and credit enhancement arm of the World Bank Group.


This inclusion will allow Bhutan-s private sector and corporations to explore external commercial borrowing (ECB) options to raise money from other countries. As a member of MIGA they can directly apply to MIGA for issuance of guarantee to attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
Current Affairs India - 11 December 2014

  1. Russia's state-owned Rosatom announced today that it would supply 12 nuclear energy reactors for India over next 20 years, under an agreement to boost nuclear energy cooperation between these two countries.This announcement was made during visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin in India today.


A 1,000-megawatt reactor is currently operating at the Russian-built Kudankulam power station in Tamil Nadu. The second one will be built before 2015.

  1. India-s former Olympic-level trap and skeet shooter, Randhir Singh has been appointed as an honorary member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) during the IOC session held in Monaco on 8-9thDecember. He was named for the honorary membership of the IOC after he served IOC as a full member from India from 2001 to 2014. With this, he became the second Indian to become an honorary member of the IOC after Ashwini Kumar.

  2. Indian hockey player and Olympic gold medalistGrihanandan Singh passed away on 7thDecember in New Delhi. He was 88. Also known as -Nandy Singh- he won two Olympic gold medals, at the 1948 London Olympics and in 1952 Helsinki Olympics with the Indian team.


 
12-December
India-s retail inflation eases further to 4.3% in November compared to 5.52% in October
India's Retail inflation, measured by Consumer Price Index, eased further to 4.3% in November compared to 5.52% in October. This is the lowest retail inflation since the government started releasing the CPI data in 2012. Consumer food price inflation dropped to 3.1% in November from 5.59% in October which pulled down overall retail inflation number.
The urban area retail inflation eased to 4.69% in November compared to 5.55% in October while in rural areas retail inflation eased to 4.09% in November compared to 5.52% in October.
IIP growth contracts by 4.2% in October, Recovery hope dashed
India's Index of Industrial Production, the most important parameter to judge performance of industrial sector, contracted by 4.2% in October compared to 2.5% growth in previous month September. This is the steepest decline in IIP number in last 2 years due contraction in production for manufacturing, capital as well as consumer goods sectors. IIP contracted by 1.2% in the same month last year.
Manufacturing sector output, which constitutes over 75% of the index, contracted by 7.6% in the same month compared to 1.3% contraction in the same month last year. The consumer durables sector output contracted steeply by 35.2% in October. Overall, 16 of the 22 industry groups in manufacturing showed negative growth in the same month.
During the April-September period of the current fiscal year 2014-15, the IIP recorded a growth of 1.9% compared to 0.2% growth in the same period last year. This dismal performance of IIP dashed all hopes of quick recovery and now RBI has to cut interest rate to boost growth.
 
13-December
 
14-December
Current Affairs Global - 14 December 2014

  1. The U.S. Senate has passed a USD 1.1 trillion spending Bill this week.The Senate passed the bill by 56 votes in favor and 40 votes against it.Now the bill was sent to President Barack Obama for approval. The timely approval of the bill helped to avert federal government shutdown and also provide funds the government through the fiscal year next September.

  2. Pakistan won the semifinal match of the Champions Trophy hockey tournament yesterday after defeating India by 4-3. Olympic champions Germany beat defending champions Australia by 3-2 in the other semifinal match and Germany will face Pakistan in the final match.


Australia won the bronze medal in the Champions Trophy after defeating Indian at Bhubaneswar today. In the classification match for the third and fourth places, Australia defeated India by 2-1.
Current Affairs India - 14 December 2014

  1. Special Director in the Intelligence Bureau, Dineshwar Sharma was appointed as new chief of Intelligence Bureau. He will take charge in January next year and will succeed current IB Chief Syed Asif Ibrahim.A 1979 batch IPS officer from Kerala cadre, he will head head of the agency for a period of two years from the date of assumption of charge or until further orders.

  2. The West Bengal Transport Minister, Madan Mitra, was arrested by the CBI on 11thDecember in connection with the chit fund related Saradha Scam. With this, he was the first Bengal Cabinet minister to be arrested by the central investigation agency in connection with the scam.


CBI said that the charges levied include criminal conspiracy, cheating and misappropriation. He has also been charged with deriving undue financial benefits from the Saradha Group. As of now, the CBI has arrested Trinamool Congress MP Srinjoy Bose, former MP and now suspended Kunal Ghosh, and Rajat Majumdar including as a part of its investigation of Saradha Scam.

  1. Union Government added 52 new drugs under National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) on 11thDecember in order to keep check on prices of essential medicines.These drugs includes some commonly used painkillers, antibiotics and some medicines used to treat cancer and skin disorders. These drugs are included in the list of 450 drugs which already involve NPPA ceiling price applicable for them.

  2. Maharashtra Government has declared Dahi Handi as an adventurous sport to make it a safe sport. This traditional sport is used on the occasion of Janmashtami where people known as Govindas make a human pyramid to break a pot filled with buttermilk tied at a certain height. After this announcement, state government will formulate new rules and safety guidelines applicable for the sport.

  3. Ruhi Singh won the -Miss Universal Peace & Humanity 2014- title held at Beirut, Lebanon this week. With this, she becomes the first Indian to win this pageant. First runner-up was Rebecca Boggiano from Australia and second runner-up was Sofia Alkhadra from Palestine.

  4. Playback singer Asha Bhosle was awarded with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 11th Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) held in Dubai this week for her contribution to Indian film industry for more than decades.


Another Egyptian actor Nour El-Sherif was also awarded with the DIFF Lifetime Achievement Award for his work on over 100 films.

  1. Delhi High Court has banned Xiaomi to sell phones in India over an alleged patent issue with global tech giant Ericsson. The High Court ordered Xiaomi to stop bringing any news phones into Indian market or sell or advertise them till the patent issue is resolved.

  2. India-s foreign exchange (forex) reserves dropped by USD 1.65 billion to USD 314.66 billion in the week ended 5thDecember, as per weekly report published by the RBI. The drop was mainly due to drop in foreign currency assets which dropped by USD 867.4 million to USD 289.954 billion in the same week.


Special Drawing Rights and the India-s reserve position in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) dropped by USD 21.6 million and USD 7.7 million respectively. Gold Reserves were also decreased by USD 753.2 million to USD 18.985 billion in the same week.
 
15-December
Current Affairs Global - 15 December 2014

  1. A gunman held some people as hostage at a cafe in Central Sydneywith an Islamic flag displayed against a window of the cafe.The entire area was locked down by Australian authority due to security reasons and India has shut down its embassy and moved all of its employees at a safer location. After 16 hours of tension, Australian police and commandos stormed into the cafe and rescued all the hostages safely, as per latest update.

  2. Miss South Africa, Rolene Strauss won the Miss World 2014 tile at the final of the beauty pageant held in London, UK. Miss Hungary, Edina Kulcsar, was the runner-up and Miss United States, Elizabeth Safrit, was the second runner-up at the same event.


India-s Koyal Rana made it to the list of top 10 contestants but failed to make it to the top five. She bagged the sub-title of Best Designer of the world.
Former Miss World Aishwarya Rai Bachchan was felicitated by the Miss World Organization at the 64th edition of the international beauty pageant for her commitment to -beauty with a purpose- after winning the title two decades ago.

  1. Anerood Jugnauth has been appointed as Prime Minister of by the President Purryag on 14thDecember. With his appointment, he became the Prime Minister of Mauritius for the sixth time after victory of his alliance in Mauritius elections held recently.He succeeds former Prime Minister Navinchandra Ramgoolam of Labour Party, who resigned as the Prime Minister on 13th December.

  2. Japan's ruling coalition led by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe won a new two-thirds majority in parliamentary elections which is also seen as a support for this economic policy. His Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) retained its House of Representatives majority after winning 325 seats out of total 475 seats.

  3. Olympic Champions Germany won the Champions Trophy Hockey Title after defeating Pakistan by 2-0 in the final match held at Bhubaneswar today. India finished at fourth position of the tournament, India had also finished at fourth in the last edition of the Champions Trophy Hockey held in Melbourne two years ago.


Current Affairs India - 15 December 2014

  1. Hindi film -Jal- was included in the list ofbest picture Oscar hopefuls and India-s music legend A. R. Rahman may also get his third Oscar nomination in the best original score category after making it to the list of 114 probables for the Oscar award. Jal features in the best picture list as an independent submission, while India will officially be represented at the Academy awards in the best foreign feature category by Liar-s Dice.

  2. Rahman has made it to the list for three of his films including Hollywood movies The Hundred-Foot Journey and Million Dollar Arm and Rajinikanth-starrer Tamil film Kochadaiiyaan. Earlier he has been nominated twice, for movies 127 Hours and Slumdog Millionaire and ended up winning both the Oscars.

  3. Reliance MediaWorks Ltd and Carnival Cinemas have announced a deal today to sell Reliance MediaWorks- multiplexes business to Carnival Cinemas Ltd. Post this deal, Carnival Cinemas will be among the top 3 multiplex operators in the country with more than 300 screens in the country.


The transaction will reduce Reliance's leverage by approximately Rs. 700 crore, through a combination of transfer of debt and infusion of cash proceeds. As a part of this deal, Reliance Capital will also retain option to acquire pre-IPO minority stake at appropriate discount on eventual listing of Carnival Cinemas

  1. Famous Telugu music director Chakri passed away early morning today. He was just 40. He was shifted to the hospital after he suffered a massive heart attack. He directed about 85 films, including some blockbuster flicks.


India's overall inflation drops to 66-month low of 0% in November from 1.77% in October
India's overall inflation, measured by the Wholesale Price Index (WPI), dropped 66-month low of 0% in November from 1.77% in previous month of October due to negative food inflation. Overall inflation stood at 7.52% in November last year. This is probably the first time when WPI inflation has hit the exact zero level. The last time WPI was lower than 0% was (—) 0.3% in July 2009.
The Food Price Index for November dropped steeply to 3-year low of just 0.63% compared to 2.7% in October. Food Inflation is on decline since May this year.  The rate of price rise for onions, vegetables were contracted by 56.28% and 28.57% respectively in November. Prices in fuel and power segment contracted by 4.91% in November compared to 0.43% inflation in October.
With 0% wholesale inflation and low retail inflation numbers, the RBI is expected to cut rates during its next monetary policy review meeting to be held early this year. RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan has kept the interest rate unchanged during its last monetary policy review meeting held early this month as he believed only interest rate cut won-t lift economy. He expects Government to take more bold steps in order to boost industrial as well as economic growth.
 
16-December
Current Affairs Global - 16 December 2014

  1. At least 130 people including more than 120 children were killed today after six Taliban gunmen stormed into a school at Peshawar in Pakistan and fired on those children and teachers present in the school. This is one of the bloodiest terrorist attacks in the country or in the world since World Trade Tower attack in USA in 2001. The raid was ended after nearly eight hours after all of them were killed by the Pakistan force.


More than 120, most of them are students, are injured in the attack. The group of militants entered the Army Public School when nearly 500 students and teachers were inside the campus and they started firing mercilessly.

  1. Indian-American Vivek Murthy has been appointed as the US Surgeon General after being approved by the Senate.With this he has become the youngest-ever US Surgeon General and first Indian-American to serve in the role. His appointment was confirmed by the US Senate by 51 votes to 43 more than a year after being nominated for the post.


Current Affairs India - 16 December 2014

  1. The Union Government banned Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) today after an engineer was detained for running a Twitter account for ISIS which praised the militant group-s military campaign. The aim of the ban is to limit the activities of the West Asia group in this country.


Home minister Rajnath Singh told in the parliament that the government aimed to limit the activities of the group in the country.  "We had taken cognisance of Islamic State in Iraq and Syria activities in other countries," he said. "As a first step we have banned this outfit in India."

  1. The Indian Railways- official website, IRCTC, was ranked as the most searched website in Google by people in India in 2014, as per the list of most searched and trending words published by Google. E-commerce website Flipkart, PSU lender SBI Online, e-tailer Snapdeal and PNR status were other most searched words, as per the same list.

  2. The Europe-based ARC Ratings SA (ARC) has assigned India -BBB+- sovereign rating with -stable- outlook which is an investment grade rating.In its maiden sovereign rating assignment, ARC has assigned -BBB+- (stable outlook) long-term foreign currency issuer rating to India. It has also assigned -A-- (stable outlook) long-term local currency issuer to the country.


Global credit rating agencies, Standard & Poor-s and Fitch have a -BBB-- (stable outlook) which is the lowest investment grade rating on India. Moody-s has also assigned lowest investment grade rating of -Baa3- with stable outlook for India.

  1. Indian PSU CompanyIndian Oil Corporationhas been ranked as the largest Indian company in terms of revenue, as per Fortune 500 list of Indian companies for 2014 published yesterday. Indian Oil Corporation was followed by Reliance Industries and Bharat Petroleum in the second and third place respectively.


Indian Oil Corp (IOC) was ranked at No 1 position with an annual revenue of Rs 5,00,973 crore, while Reliance Industries Ltd's (RIL) full-year revenue stood at Rs 4,44,021 crore. Other Indian Companies in the top 10 list include HPCL (4th) Tata Motors (5th), State Bank of India (6th), ONGC (7th), Tata Steel (8th), Essar Oil (9th) and Hindalco Industries (10th).

  1. Garment company, Arvind Limited has been awarded with the National Energy Conservation Award 2014 by the Ministry of Power, Government of India on 14thDecember. It was ranked at No 1 position among 70 textiles players scrutinized by the Ministry of Power on the National Energy Conservation Day on December 14. Arvind achieved nearly 22% reduction in specific consumption in thermal energy and 18% reduction in power usage from last financial year.

  2. Tata-Singapore Airlines (SIA) joint venture airline Vistara was granted flying permit in the country by aviation regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).This approval will allow the new start-up airlines to start operations in India. Tata Sons and SIA announced the joint venture in September 2013.

  3. Indian rupee drooped below 63 mark for the first time since January as Indian Rupee continues to depreciate. The currency fell to a low of 63.54 today which is also lowest since September 2013.

  4. Former World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand won his maiden London Classic Chess title after defeating British Grandmaster Michael Adams in the fifth and final round.Recently he lost to Magnus Carlsen of Norway in the world championship match held at Sochi last month.


 
17-December
Current Affairs India - 17 December 2014

  1. The Lok Sabha passed the National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi Laws (Special Provisions) Amendment Bill, 2014 today which was presented in Lok Sabha by the Union Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu. This bill aims to amend the National Capital Territory of Delhi Laws (Special Provisions) Second Act, 2011 as the deadlines provided under the 2011 Act expires on 31stDecember 2014. Post the bill approval, the date has not been extended up to 31stDecember 2017.

  2. India-s leading publishing house, Jagran Prakashan (JPL) announced that it would acquire Music Broadcast Pvt. Ltd (MBPL), which runs Radio City FM across seven states. With this, Jagaran Prakashan is all set to venture into the radio broadcasting business. It will be an all cash deal, as per a communication to the stock exchange. JPL publishes 12 newspaper brands with over 100 editions and 250-plus sub-editions in 5 languages.

  3. Indian woman boxer L Sarita Devi has been banned for 1 year by the International Boxing Association (AIBA) for refusing to accept her bronze medal after her controversial semifinal loss at the Asian Games held recently. The ban will be for 1 year only from 1stOctober 2014 to 1stOctober 2015 and fined 1000 swiss francs.


It is a huge relief for her that she was not banned for life and she can compete in the 2016 Olympic qualifiers. India's Cuban coach BI Fernandez, who also criticized officials after the semifinal match, was handed a two-year ban and fined 2000 Swiss francs.
 
18-December
Current Affairs Global - 18 December 2014

  1. In a historic decision, US President Barack Obama has announced a series of steps to normalize relations with communist-ruled Cuba after decades. The US Government had severed diplomatic ties and imposed a series of sanctions on Cuba during Cold war era.


Obama announced the change in US relations with Cuba, after the country-s communist leaders released an American, named as Alan Gross, who had been imprisoned there for five years. American government has also released some Cuban prisoners who was held for years.

  1. Pro-democracy activist of China, Xu Youyu was awarded with the -Olof Palme Human Rights Prize- for the year 2014 for his work for democracy, social justice, human rights and freedom of speech which has universal meaning. The award given annually by the Stockholm-based Olof Palme Memorial Fund of Sweden.


"He has worked consistently for a democratisation of Chinese society, while condemning any form of violence as a political method," the Stockholm-based Olof Palme Memorial Fund said.
Current Affairs India - 18 December 2014

  1. India's space agency ISRO launched its heaviest rocket ever, the 630-tonne, three-stage Geo-Synchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark III, from its base at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh today.


This successful launch will help the space organisation put heavier satellites and astronauts into orbit and help India become a competitive player in the multimillion dollar commercial launch market.

  1. Indian film -The Lunchbox- has been named as the best first feature at the 18th annual Toronto Film Critics Association (TFCA) awards in Toronto. It is also the only Indian movie to win a TFCA award.


It was voted as the best first feature by the members of the association, which includes Toronto-based journalists and broadcasters who specialize in film criticism and commentary.
 
19-December
Current Affairs India - 19 December 2014

  1. The Finance Ministry has approved 8.75% interest rate on Provident Fund, PF deposits for the financial year 2014-15.Employees' Provident Fund Organisation, EPFO's Central Board of Trustees had decided to retain the interest rate on PF deposits at 8.75% for the current financial year at its meeting held on the 26th of August. As per the practice, this decision on interest rate is implemented after the agreement of the Finance Ministry.

  2. TVS chairman Venu Srinivasan was made Honorary Citizen of Busan, Korea in order to recognize his efforts to enhance friendship and cooperation between India and Republic of Korea. He was conferred with the title by Mayor of Busan Metropolitan City, Suh Byung-soo during the honorary citizenship ceremony held at Busan.

  3. Famous Gandhian and freedom fighter Chunibhai Vaidya passed away at his Ahmedabad residence today morning.He was 97. A true Gandhian and a Sarvoday veteran Chunibhai Vaidya began his life in activism with freedom struggle. He also actively participated in Vinoba Bhave-s Bhoodan Movement.

  4. Atletico De Kolkata and Kerala F.C. will play in the final match of ISL tomorrow for the first ISL title. Atletico De Kolkata defeated Goa F.C.in the penalty shoot outs in one semifinal match while Kerala F.C. defeated Chennaiyan F.C. by 4-3 in the other semifinal match.


 
20-December
 
21-December
Current Affairs India - 21 December 2014

  1. The Central government has named Rajinder Khanna, a 1978 batch RAS officer, as the new chief of Research & Analysis Wing (RAW). He will succeed incumbent Alok Joshi, who will retire at the end of this month.


Central Government has also appointed Prakash Mishra, a 1978 IPS officer of Odisha cadre, as the chief of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) yesterday.

  1. Richard Rahul Verma has been sworn in as the US Ambassador to New Delhi this week by Secretary of State John Kerry. With this, he has also become the first ever Indian-American to hold the post. His appointment was also confirmed by the Senate by a voice vote last week.


Earlier he had played an important role in the Congressional passage of civil nuclear deal with India, and advocated for strong Indo-US ties. He succeeds Nancy Powell, who resigned earlier this year after a damaging row over the treatment of diplomat Devyani Khobragade over visa fraud charges.

  1. The mid-year economic review published by the Finance Ministry has projected India-s growth rate at 5.5% for the current financial year 2014-15. The economic review document was tabled by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Parliament on Friday.

  2. India-s largest e-commerce marketplace, Flipkart has raised another USD 700 million from new investors for its expansion from investors Baillie Gifford, Greenoaks Capital, Steadview Capital, T. Rowe Price Associates?and Qatar Investment Authority. DST Global, GIC, ICONIQ Capital and Tiger Global also participated in this latest round of financing, as per Flipkart.


As the number of shareholders in the company exceeded 50, Flipkart has also filed an application with Singapore ACRA to convert it into a public company. As Flipkart was incorporated in Singapore, this filling was done as a part of its mandatory procedure.

  1. India-s foreign exchange (forex) reserves jumped by USD 2.172 billion to USD 316.833 billion in the week ended 12th December, as per weekly report published by the RBI. The jump was mainly due to jump in foreign currency assets which was increased by USD 2.405 billion to USD 292.360 billion in the same week.


Special Drawing Rights was increased by USD 21.6 million while India-s reserve position in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) dropped by USD 253.5 million in the same week. Gold Reserves remained unchanged at USD 18.985 billion in the same week.

  1. Kolkata-s Atletico de Kolkata won the first edition of Indian Super League after defeating Kerala Blasters by 1-0 in the final match held at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai yesterday. With this win, Atletico de Kolkata becomes the first champion of ISL.


Mohammad Rafique scored the most-important goal in the dying minutes to help Atletico de Kolkata win the title.
 
22-December
Current Affairs India - 22 December 2014

  1. India is celebrating National Mathematics Day today (22ndDecember) across the country to honour the birth anniversary of the greatest Indian Mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan. Former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh declared to observe his birth anniversary as -National Mathematics Day- across the country on 26thFebruary 2012 at Madras University on the occasion of 125th birth anniversary of Ramanujan.

  2. Chairperson of Bharat Hotels Ltd, Jyotsna Suri took over as the president of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) this weekend. She succeeded Sidharth Birla.


At the same time, deputy managing director of DCM Shriram Industries Ltd, Alok B Shriram took over as the president of PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

  1. As per RBI notification, the deadline toexchange the pre-2005 notes ends on 1stJanuary 2015. Everyone has to exchange all the currency notes of various denominations before this deadline which were printed before 2015 and lacks the necessary security features. The Reserve Bank has so far shredded over 144 crore such notes valued at 52,855 crore rupees since the launch of the initiative to take out the pre-2005 notes from the circulation.

  2. Indian batting legend Sachin Tendulkar has been named as the brand ambassador for ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 to be held in Australia and New Zealand, as per announcement made by the ICC in Dubai today. In his new role, he will promote and support different ICC initiatives to enhance the profile of the world cup tournament.


He was also the ICC Ambassador for the ICC Cricket world cup co-hosted by Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka in 2011. ICC Chief Executive David Richardson said, Tendulkar is an inspiration for sportspeople for his endurance, perseverance, talent, personality and commitment to the game.

  1. Indian men and women teams win the Kabaddi World Cup 2014 titles in the respective categories this weekend after winning the final matchesheld at Guru Gobind Singh Multipurpose Stadium in Jalandhar, Punjab. This was the fifth edition of Kabaddi World Cup.


In Men-s category India defeated Pakistan team while in Women-s category Indian defeated New Zealand team to win the title for the fourth consecutive time.

  1. India-s Arjun Atwal won the first edition of Dubai Open Golf Championship title held at Dubai Sports City yesterday.Korea-s Wang Jeung-hun came second in the same tournament. Among other Indian golfers, Shiv Kapur secured a joint 11th place with Gaganjeet Bhullar while Jeev Milkha Singh, was placed at 31st place.


 
23-December
Current Affairs India - 23 December 2014

  1. Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) emerged as the single largest party in Jharkhand after announcement of assembly vote held in the state earlier this month. BJP won 42 seats out of total 81 seats in the state and all set to form new government.


People's Democratic Party (PDP) emerged as the largest party in Jammu and Kashmir s per assembly election result announced today while BJP secured second largest number of seats. PDP won 28 seats while BJP won 25 seats out of overall 87 seats. As of now it is a hung assembly in Jammu & Kashmir and it is not yet finalized who will form government.

  1. The committee headed by the famous economist Vijay Kelkar has recommended autonomous status for Vidarbha region saying that the region's population feels neglected. It has also recommended to shift the state secretariat to Nagpur for the month of December every year. Finance and Planning Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar today tabled the committee's report in the Legislative Assembly


The committee was earlier appointed to study the issue of balanced development of various regions of Maharashtra.

  1. The 13th edition of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divaswill be held in Gujarat from January 7-9 next year. Pravasi Bharatiya Divaswill is an event which celebrates the achievements of Indians living outside India. Gujarat has been chosen as the partner State as year 2015 will also be observed as the 100th year of Mahatma Gandhi-s return to India from South Africa.


 
24-December
Current Affairs Global - 24 December 2014

  1. The US economic growth stood at 5% in the third quarter (July-September) of the current year. This is the higher GDP growth rate for US economy in 11 years. This growth rate is much faster than the earlier estimated growth rate of 3.9% and 4.6% GDP growth witnessed in the second quarter.


US consumer spending, which accounts for approximately two-thirds of US economic activity, grew by 3.2% annually in the same quarter which pushed the overall GDP growth higher. This is a good news for the world-s largest economy which has been witnessing strong economic growth and improved job market recently.
Current Affairs India - 24 December 2014

  1. Central Government has announced today to present -Bharat Ratna-, India's highest civilian honour, to former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and freedom fighter Madan Mohan Malaviya. The announcement was made just one day before birthday of Atal Bohari Vajpayee on 25thDecember which the government has already declared as 'Good Governance Day'. Prime Minister Narendra Modi made promise to award Bharat Ratna to freedom fighter and educationist Madan Mohan Malaviya during his election campaigns earlier this year.

  2. The union cabinet has approved to hike Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) cap in the insurance sector to 49% from existing cap of 26% as the legislation could not be passed in the recent Parliament session.The Insurance Bill, which has been pending since 2008 in the Rajya Sabha, seeks to increase the composite foreign investment limit in insurance companies to 49% from current level of 26%.


The Union Cabinet has also approved re-promulgation of an Ordinance to facilitate e-auction of coal blocks for private companies for captive use and allot mines directly to state and central PSUs. The decision was taken as the Rajya Sabha could not take up the Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Bill.

  1. Senior IAS officer S Bhattacharya has been appointed as the chairman and managing director of PSU mining giant Coal India Limited. The post was vacant for last six months. The PESB had recommended his name for the post of chairman and managing director of Coal India last month.


S Bhattacharya, a 1985 batch IAS officer, is currently the CMD of Singareni Collieries Company (SCCL). He will take over the charge from Additional Secretary (Coal) A K Dubey who was given the additional charge as CMD of Coal India Limited from 26th June this year.

  1. The Reserve Bank of India has extended the deadline to replace pre-2005 currency notes to 30thJune 2015 from existing deadline of 1stJanuary 2015.  RBI has said earlier in its notification that all notes issued prior to 2005 would be withdrawn from circulation.

  2. Veteran director K. Balachander, who was admitted to a private hospital recently, passed away in Chennai yesterday. He was 84. Popularly known as K.B., he introduced many top stars in Tamil Cinema including Kamal Hassan and Rajinikanth.


His first film as a director was Neer Kumizhi which won a national award. His other films include -Arangetram-, -Aval Oru Thodarkadhai-, Rajini and Haasan-starrer -Apoorva Raagangal-, -Avargal-, -Ek Duje Ke Liye- and -Aaina- etc. He was awarded with the Dadasaheb Phalke award, highest award for Indian Cinema, for his contribution to Indian cinema.
 
25-December
 
26-December
Current Affairs India - 26 December 2014

  1. Raghuvar Das, national vice-president of the BJP was elected the leader of the BJP Legislature Party in Jharkhand today. With this, he will be the first non-tribal Chief Minister of Jharkhand. Raghuvar Das is also a former Deputy Chief Minister of the State. The BJP-AJSU alliance had emerged as the largest party after securing 42 seats out of total 81 seats in the assembly poll held this month.

  2. President Pranab Mukherjee signed two key ordinances which will increase FDI cap in the insurance sector and facilitate e-auction of coal blocks.The NDA Government had recommended promulgation of these ordinances earlier this week after failing to get them passed in Parliament. As a part of insurance amendment bill, the Government recommended promulgation of a fresh ordinance to allow increase FDI cap for Insurance sector to 49% from existing 26%.


The Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Bill, 2014 was passed by the Lok Sabha but could not be taken up for discussion in the Rajya Sabha, prompting the government to recommend a re-promulgation of the coal ordinance.

  1. The central government launched a new health mission named as 'Mission Indradhanush' on 25thDecember. This mission will aim to cover by 2020 children who are either unvaccinated or partially vaccinated against seven vaccine-preventable diseases.The diseases are diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, measles and hepatitis B.


Union Health Minister J P Nadda launched the mission on 'Good Governance Day' to mark the birth anniversary of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Under the programme, four special vaccination campaigns will be conducted next year with proper planning. While 201 districts will be covered in the first phase, 297 will be targeted for the second phase.

  1. Central Government has set up Mathur committee to examine the possibility of constitution of a Special Investigation Team (SIT) for re investigation of the 1984 anti-Sikh riot cases this week. The Committee will be headed by former Supreme Court Judge Justice G.P. Mathur and it will submit its report till April 2015.


The Justice Nanavati Commission had earlier recommended reopening of only four of 241 cases closed by police but BJP wanted the reinvestigation of all the other 237 cases.

  1. Dr. K. Radhakrishnan, Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has been chosen as one of the 2014 top ten scientists chosen by the prestigious journal -Nature-.He is listed along with other famous scientists including Andrea Accomazzo, the Rosetta flight operations director, European Space Agency.

  2. Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group firm Reliance Capital roped in Japan-s Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank (SMTB) as a strategic partner for its proposed banking venture within the country. SMTB will buy initial stake of 2.77% in Reliance Capital for nearly Rs 371 crore as a part of long term strategic deal.


SMTB is Japan-s largest financial institution with assets under custody of USD 1.8 trillion. It will help Reliance Capital to launch a new bank in Indian when RBI permits the same.
27-December
 
28-December
Current Affairs Global - 28 December 2014

  1. An AirAsia plane went missing while flying from Indonesia to Singapore today morning. 162 people including 7 crew members were on board in the plane.The pilots requested a change of flight plan because of weather and immediately after that the air traffic control lost contact with the plane at 7:24 AM today morning. This is the third major aviation disaster in last one year after two incidents involving Malaysian Airways.


Current Affairs India - 28 December 2014

  1. BJP leader Raghubar Das has been sworn in as the first non-tribal chief minister of Jharkhand at the ceremony held at the Birsa Munda Football Stadium in Ranchi today. Along with him, four cabinet ministers were also sworn in Nilkanth Singh Munda, Chandreswar Prasad Singh, Louis Marandi and BJP's ally All Jharkhand Students' Union Chandraprakash Choudhary.

  2. Microsoft-s Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella visited Indian and met Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi this week. He pledged support to Narendra Modi-s Digital India initiative during his meeting. He also met Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and discussed modernization and security of the government-s digital infrastructure.

  3. Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan has been awarded with the Yash Chopra Memorial Award in recognition of his decades old contribution towards Indian film industry on 27thDecember. Maharashtra Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao honoured him with the award. This award was awarded to Lata Mangeshkar last year.

  4. The Akkineni International Foundation, founded by legendary actor Akkineni Nageswara Rao, presented the ANR Award to Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan today. He was awarded with the award in recognition of his contribution to Indian cinema.


Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao and Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu were present in the ceremony.

  1. India-s foreign exchange (forex) reserves jumped by USD 3.163 billion to USD 319.997 billion in the week ended 19th December, as per weekly report published by the RBI. The jump was mainly due to jump in foreign currency assets which was increased by USD 3.310 billion to USD 295.670 billion in the same week.


However Special Drawing Rights and India-s reserve position in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) were dropped by USD 29.2 million and USD 117.6 million respectively in the same week. Gold Reserves remained unchanged at USD 18.985 billion in the same week.

  1. Indian badminton player Ankita Raina won her maiden ITF singles title after defeating UK-sKaty Dunne in straight sets 6-2, 6-2 in the final match held at the Deccan Gymkhana in Pune.With this, she also became the first Indian to clinch the USD 25,000 title in the tournament after 14 years.

  2. The BCCI has banned left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha from bowling in competitive matches due to suspect action. It has also suggested that his action needs remedial measures and will not be able to play in the current Ranji trophy matches. Ojha will go to Chennai for taking corrective measures.


 
29-December
Current Affairs Global - 29 December 2014

  1. The USA and NATO have formally withdrawn their forces from Afghanistan yesterday, which marks the end of 13-year long Afghanistan war. This was also the longest war in American history. NATO and USA forces have transitioned the security responsibility toown security forces of Afghanistan.


The US-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) combat mission, will be replaced by a NATO -training and support- mission from 1st January 2015 onwards.
Current Affairs India - 29 December 2014

  1. Union Cabinet has approved a proposal to promulgate an ordinance on Land Acquisition Act in order to strike a balance between interests of farmer and industrial growth. The decision to amend the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 was taken at a Cabinet meeting held in New Delhi today.


Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that new provision will be applied on the projects important to national security, rural infrastructure, affordable housing, industrial corridor and projects of social infrastructure. For such projects, the mandatory consent of 80% of the land owners will not be required but farmers will be paid higher compensation for their lands.

  1. India-s FDI inflow jumped by 25% to USD 17.35 billion in the April-October period of the current financial year compared to same period last year, as per the announcement made by the Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. India received USD 13.82 billion FDI inflow in the same period last year.


FDI inflow increased due to improvement in the macroeconomic situation and investor sentiment due to series of investor friendly steps taken by the new Government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
 
30-December
Current Affairs Global - 30 December 2014

  1. The Indonesian Government have confirmed that wreckages found in the Java Sea belonged to the ill-fated Air Asia plane which disappeared from the radar on Sunday while flying to Singapore. It has also recovered 40 bodies from the Java Sea near the spot. Air Asia has also confirmed the same. Total 162 people on board in the plane are considered to be killed in the accident.

  2. Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has become the world's most valuable technology start-up as the firm raised USD 1.1 billion in a fresh round of capital infusion, making its valuation at USD 45 billion.


It has achieved the feat only after four years of being founded. It overtook taxi booking start up app Uber which was valued at USD 40 billion.
Current Affairs India - 30 December 2014

  1. Indian Cricket team captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has surprisingly announced his retirement from test cricket with immediate effect just after completing 3rdtest against Australia today "citing the strain of playing all formats.After this Virat Kohli will lead the team in the fourth test against Australia in Sydney, as per BCCI. The surprise announcement came from Dhoni during press conference after drawing third test against Australia and losing the four match Border - Gavaskar series by 2-0.


M S Dhoni is considered to be one of India-s greatest Test team captains under whom Indian team secure No 1 rank in test teams ranking. MS Dhoni played 90 Tests in his entire Test cricket career and scored 4876 runs at an average of 38, with a high score of 224. As a wicketkeeper, he made 294 dismissals, the fifth highest in Test cricket.

  1. Central Government has shifted Uttarakhand Governor Aziz Qureshi to Mizoram for his remaining term. Meghalaya Governor Dr K K Paul has been appointed as the new Governor of Uttarakhand who succeeds Mr. Qureshi. Dr K K Paul will also continue to hold the additional charge of the Governor of Manipur along with Uttarakhand. West Bengal Governor, Keshari Nath Tripathi has been given additional charge of Governor of Meghalaya.