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International Current Affairs
Here we are providing very important current affairs of international category for 12th December 2016.
- Indonesian President Joko Widodo is on a two-day state visit to India.
- This is his first visit to India after assuming power in October 2014.
- He was accompanied by several cabinet ministers, senior officials and a 22-member very high level business delegation.
- During this visit, India & Indonesia exchanged agreements for cooperation in field of Youth Affairs & Sports, fishing & standardisation.
- The Oxford University has urged students to use the gender neutral pronoun “ze” instead of “he” or “she” when addressing fellow students.
- The Students’ Union has claimed that the new guidelines are aimed at reducing the risk of offending transgender students.
- The world’s longest tunnel was officially opened today for regular rail service in Switzerland.
National Current Affairs
- Pranab Mukherjee today launched ‘100 Million for 100 Million Campaign‘ to end child labour, child slavery and violence against children.
- This campaign is being organised by The Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation.
- The campaign aims to mobilise 100 million youth and children for 100 million underprivileged children across the world.
- Its prime objective is to end child labour, child slavery, violence against children over the next 5 years.
- The “severe” cyclonic storm Vardah is going to cross the Bay of Bengal coast between Sriharikota and Krishnapatnam in Andhra Pradesh today’s evening.
- Authorities have sounded a high alert in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu after the cyclone reportedly turned “severe”.
- About Cyclon Vardah
- ‘Vardah‘ is a severe cyclonic storm that originated in Southern Thailand, killing a dozen people there, before travelling towards India.
- The atmospheric disturbances caused by the storm led to several tourists getting stranded in the Andaman and Nicobar islands recently.
- The cyclone hit the Indian coast today and is likely to cause heavy rainfall, with winds reaching 150 kmph.
- Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan launched the Narmada Seva Yatra at Amarkantak today.
- The five months long Yatra aims at turning the Narmada river pollution free and unceasing river.
New Appointments list as on 12th December 2016 are as follows:
- New Zealand‘s socially conservative finance chief Bill English was today sworn in as the country’s new Prime Minister.
- He has replaced John Key who has resigned last week.
- Italian President Sergio Mattarella today asked Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni to take over as the Prime Minister and form the new government.
- Gentiloni’s new role will not be official until he chooses his cabinet and secures a vote of confidence in parliament.
- This comes after former PM Matteo Renzi resigned when his nationwide referendum on constitutional reforms was defeated.
- Rafia Qaseem Baig, a 29-year-old Pakistani woman, has become the first woman to join the country’s Bomb Disposal Unit.
- Baig, who has Masters degrees in International Relations and Economics, joined the force as a constable seven years ago.
- Pakistan today named Lieutenant General Naveed Mukhtar as the new chief of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).
- He is going to replace the outgoing chief Lieutenant General Rizwan Akhtar.
- US President-elect Donald Trump has named oil giant Exxon Mobil Corp’s CEO, Rex Tillerson, as the country’s Secretary of State.
- Writer and scholar Akshaykumar M Kale was been elected as the President of the 90th Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Sahitya Sammelan.
Recent Books in News
- President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister Narendra Modi released three books titled ‘From Raj to Swaraj‘, ‘Life At Rashtrapati Bhavan‘ and ‘Indradhanush- Volume-2‘.
- All these three books have been published by Publications Division of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Govt. of India.
Science & Technology
- China has successfully launched Fengyun-4 satellite, first of its new generation weather satellites into geostationary orbit.
- It was launched onboard of Long March-3B carrier rocket from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in Sichuan Province.
- The launch marked the 242nd mission of China’s Long March series of rockets.
Banking & Economic Affairs
- SBI Cards is going to launch a credit card with a ₹25,000 limit for the lower strata of the society, Chief Executive Officer Vijay Jasuja announced today.
- Venezuela has demonetised its largest 100-bolivar note giving citizens 10 days to exchange the bills, while the country suffers from world’s highest annual inflation, estimated at 500%.
- The move has been initiated to combat smuggling of bills at the Venezuelan-Colombian border.
- Note : There are over 600 crore such notes (48% of all currency), being exchanged at $0.02 in black markets.
- The government is planning to make all the payments made to industrial workers cashless, asking employers to either provide a cheque or make deposits directly into workers’ accounts.
- Workers with wages not exceeding ₹18,000 per month are said to be covered under the new rule.
- The move would also help reduce workers’ grievances regarding non-payment of minimum wages.
- Iran’s state-run airline IranAir today announced that it had finalised a $16.6 billion (over ₹1.1 lakh crore) deal with aircraft manufacturer Boeing to purchase 80 passenger planes.
- This is Iran’s biggest deal with a US-based company since the 1979 Islamic revolution.
- This comes after decades-long economic sanctions against Iran were lifted following a deal to restrict its nuclear program.
Awards & Honors
- The Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone starrer ‘La La Land‘ won the ‘Best Picture‘ and seven other awards at the 22nd Critics’ Choice Awards.
- Casey Affleck won the Best Actor award for ‘Manchester by the Sea’.
- Natalie Portman was named the Best Actress for her role in ‘Jackie’.
- ‘Game of Thrones‘ won the award for ‘Best Drama Series‘.
Question of the Day
- How do Indian cyclones get their names ?
- Since 2004, names of tropical cyclones in the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea have been assigned from a list of 64 names submitted by different countries. India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Sri Lanka and Thailand suggested different names for the comprehensive nomenclature list. Notably, if the storm causes death and destruction, the name is retired after use.
- Important Points to Note :
- The name of the cyclonic storm ‘Vardah‘, which means ‘red rose’ in Urdu, had been suggested by Pakistan.
- The last cyclone that hit Chennai was ‘Nada‘, whose name was suggested by Oman.