Gyaankosh – Current Affairs For May 2019 – Set 2

  • The website of the Lokpal www.lokpal.gov.in has been launched. It was inaugurated by Chairperson Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose in presence of all the Members of Lokpal in New Delhi. It provides basic information about the working and functioning of the anti-corruption ombudsman. The Lokpal is the first institution of its kind in India established under the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 to inquire and investigate into allegations of the corruption against public functionaries.
  • President Ram Nath Kovind has greeted the people of Sikkim on their statehood day. It was on 16th May 1975 that Sikkim officially merged with the Indian union and became the 22nd state of the country.
  • Reliance Industries Ltd. (RIL) acquired British toy retailer ‘Hamleys’ in an all cash deal. RIL has acquired Hamleys in 67.96 million pounds (about Rs. 620 cr). With this announcement, Reliance will get hold of 100% shares of Hamleys Global Holdings Limited (HGHL).
  • The Padma Bhushan awardee and ITC’s Non-Executive Chairman YC Deveshwar passed away at the age of 72. He spearheaded the diversification of ITC to an FMCG company. He stepped down as chief executive of ITC in 2017. Between 1991 and 1994, he led state-owned carrier Air India as the Chairman and Managing Director.
  • Prof N.R. Madhava Menon, an educationist, scholar, and the pioneering spirit behind modern legal education in India, has passed away. He was 84 years old. Menon was bestowed with the Padma Shri in 2003 for his outstanding contribution to public services.
  • First AH-64E (I) – Apache Guardian helicopter was formally handed over to the Indian Air Force at Boeing production facility in Arizona, USA. Air Marshal AS Butola, represented the Indian Air Force and accepted the first Apache.
  • India successfully conducted the flight test of ABHYAS – High-speed Expendable Aerial Target (HEAT) from a test range in Odisha. The trial, carried out by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Chandipur in Balasore, was tracked by various radars and electro-optic systems.
  • Home Ministry canceled the registration of NGO Infosys Foundation under the Foreign Contribution (Regulations) Act for violating the norms of receiving foreign grants. Under the FCRA Act, all non-government organizations (NGOs) have to mandatorily register under the act. Infosys Foundation had not submitted annual income and expenditure statement on foreign funding for last 6 years.
  • Captain Aarohi Pandit, a 23-year-old pilot, from Mumbai became the world’s first woman to cross the Atlantic Ocean solo in a Light Sports Aircraft (LSA) on 14th May.  This achievement is part of her ongoing Women Empower (WE) Expedition in the tiny aircraft called Mahi. This one year-long global circumnavigation flight was launched with her friend Captain Keithair Misquitta on July 30 and both began their trip in August 2018.
  • Japan has started testing its fastest-ever bullet train capable of reaching 400 kilometers per hour (249 mph) as it continues to develop the revolutionary mode of travel. The ALFA-X marks a new stage of growth for the Shinkansen, pushing the world-renowned high-speed rail service even faster towards the future.
  • One of the most prestigious international events from the world of cinema, the Cannes Film Festival has begun in France. Information and Broadcasting Secretary Amit Khare is leading the Indian delegation at Cannes and will inaugurate India Pavilion.
  • Merchant service and UPI payments app BharatPe has roped in Bollywood actor Salman Khan as its brand ambassador. The new brand campaign with Khan will be focused towards educating merchants and users about UPI payments along with driving adoption of BharatPe app for all their business needs.
  • ITC Managing Director Sanjiv Puri has been appointed as the chairman by the Board of Directors. His new designation will now be chairman and managing director. He has been the Managing Director since 2018.
  • Reserve Bank of India has released a vision document ‘Payment and Settlement Systems in India: Vision 2019 – 2021’, with its core theme of ‘Empowering Exceptional E-payment Experience’ for ensuring a safe, secure, convenient, quick and affordable e-payment system. The move comes as the apex bank expects the number of digital transactions to increase more than four times to 8,707 crores in December 2021. It envisages achieving “a highly digital and cash-lite society” through the goal posts of competition, cost-effectiveness, convenience and confidence (4Cs).
  • Ireland has declared a climate emergency in their country, to be the second country after Britain to do so. Britain’s parliament became the first in the world to declare a climate emergency, passing the largely symbolic motion on May 1. The step followed 11 days of street protests in London by the Extinction Rebellion environmental campaign group.
  • Taiwan has approved a bill legalizing same-sex marriage, a landmark decision that makes the self-ruled island the first place in Asia to pass gay marriage legislation. The successful bill includes limited adoption rights for same-sex couples
  • Nepalese Sherpa climber Kami Rita has scaled Mount Everest for a 23rd time, breaking his own record for the most successful ascents of the world’s highest peak. He first scaled Everest in 1994.
  • Ten million US Dollars or a little more than 70 crore rupees are on offer in the upcoming ICC men’s cricket World Cup 2019. The 46-day tournament will be played across 11 venues in the United Kingdom from 30th of May. Besides a trophy, the World Cup winner will earn a cash award of 4 million US dollars (about 28 crore rupees) which is the highest prize money on offer in the history of the tournament. The runners-up take home 2 million US Dollars or about 14 crore rupees.
  • Amul has been announced as the principal sponsor of the Afghanistan cricket team for the upcoming World Cup, slated to be held in England and Wales from May 30. The logo of brand Amul will appear on the leading arm of the Afghanistan team playing jerseys as well as on the training kits throughout the showpiece event.
  • Pakistan off-spinner Sana Mir become the most successful women’s ODI spinner in history after she took her 147th wicket, highest ever by any spinner in One-day International (ODI) cricket. Currently, Mir is placed on the third position in the ICC’s ODI bowling ranking, which is topped by Indian pacer Jhulan Goswami.
  • Mumbai Indians (MI) on 12th May clinched the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 title. MI defeated Chennai Super Kings (CSK) by one run on the last ball. With this, Mumbai Indians set the record for winning the most number of Indian Premier League titles. This became the first team to win the IPL title for 4 times.
  • Manchester City clinched their fourth Premier League title (football) after winning the 2018-19 season. Manchester City registered a 4-1 victory against Brighton to accumulate 98 points, while Liverpool, who were also in the title race, finished second with 97 points.
  • Novak Djokovic, the World No. 1 tennis player, won the Madrid Open 2019 title. He defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas, the Greek tennis player, and secured 6-3, 6-4. He equaled Rafael Nadal’s record of 33 ATP Masters 1000 titles.  It is also Djokovic’s 200th victory against a Top 10 opponent.
  • Inaugural issue of world’s first exclusive women’s cricket magazine ‘Criczone’ was released with Indian team vice-captain Smriti Mandhana featuring as the cover story.
  • India’s GS Lakshmi has become the first ever woman to be appointed to the ICC International Panel of Match Referees and will be eligible to referee international games with immediate effect.
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