Gyaankosh – Current Affairs for the Month of July 2019 – Set 2

  • The Delhi government has announced that the Rajghat thermal power plant will be officially shut and turned into a solar park. A5,000 KW of solar power will be produced at the 45-acre plant site.
  • President Ram Nath Kovind has transferred 2 Governors and made fresh new appointments across 10 States. New appointments are as follows:
    • Andhra Pradesh: Biswa Bhusan Harichandan will replace ESL Narasimhan.
    • Bihar: Phagu Chuhan will replace Lalji Tandon.
    • Chhatisgarh: Anusuiya Uikey will replace Anandiben Patel. Anadiben was holding additional charge as Governor of the state along with MP.
    • Himachal Pradesh: Kalraj Mishra will replace Acharya Devvrat
    • Madhya Pradesh: Lalji Tandon will replace Anandiben Patel.
    • Nagaland: R.N. Ravi will replace P.B. Acharya.
    • Tripura: Ramesh Bais will replace Kaptan Singh Solanki.
    • Uttar Pradesh: Anandiben Patel will replace Ram Naik.
    • West Bengal: Jagdeep Dhankhar will replace Keshari Nath Tripathi.
  • India lifted 271 million people out of poverty between 2006 and 2016, recording the fastest reductions in the multidimensional poverty index values during the period. This is according to a report by the United Nations which stated there have been strong improvements in areas such as assets, cooking fuel, sanitation, and nutrition.
  • Parliament passed Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2019 aimed at tightening Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) compliance and ensuring stricter action for non-compliance of the company law regulations. It amends the Companies Act, 2013. It was first passed by Lok Sabha on July 26, 2019 and then by Rajya Sabha by July 30, 2019.
  • Parliament passed the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill 2019 or Triple Talaq Bill after it was approved by Rajya Sabha. It replaces Ordinance promulgated on February 21, 2019.  It aims to declares practice of instant triple talaq void and illegal by making it cognizable penal offence. The objective of the bill is Protect rights of married Muslim women and ensure gender equality and gender justice to Muslim women by declaring practice of triple talaq as void and illegal i.e. not enforceable in law and prevent divorce by practice of ‘talaq-e-biddat’ by their husbands.
  • Meghalaya became the first state in India to ensure the conservation of water and have own water policy following a nod given by the State Cabinet. The draft policy was approved by the State Cabinet in a meeting chaired by Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma. It is historic for Meghalaya as the state has become the first state in the country to have a State Water Policy.
  • Over 30 lakh persons enrolled under “PM Shram Yogi Maandhan Scheme”. This voluntary and contributory pension scheme is benefited for unorganized workers. Under this scheme assures the minimum monthly pension of 3000 rupees to the beneficiaries after attaining the age of 60 years.
  • Indian Foreign Service officer Vivek Kumar was appointed as private secretary to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He is a 2004 batch IFS officer and currently working as Director in PMO office.
  • Union Minister of Human Resource Development released UGC Guide to Student Induction Programme “Deeksharambh” in New Delhi. The guide to Student Induction Programme is to help new students adjust and feel comfortable in the new environment, inculcate in them the ethos and culture of the institution, help them build bonds with other students and faculty members, and expose them to a sense of larger purpose and self-exploration.
  • The government has set a target for the installation of Rooftop Solar projects of 40,000 Megawatt by 2022 in the country. Gujarat ranks on top in the installation of rooftop solar projects with an installed capacity of 261.97 megawatts. Total rooftop solar installation in India currently stands at 1,700.54 MW. Gujarat is followed by Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu with 198.52 MW and 151.62 MW.
  • BS Yeddyurappa, 3-time chief minister of Karnataka, will once again take the oath as Karnataka CM as the Bharatiya Janata Party has staked the claim for government formation three days after HD Kumaraswamy’s government failed to prove majority.
  • Kaiga Atomic Energy station (Karnataka) sets a World Record in continuous operation of 962 days by Unit-1 of Kaiga Generating Station (KGS-1) among nuclear power plants of all technologies.
  • “Kargil: Untold stories from the War”, the book published by Penguin Random House, is authored by Rachna Bisht Rawat.
  • Three-time Delhi Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Shiela Dixit passed away in New Delhi. She served as Delhi’s chief minister for 15 years. She was the senior most Congress leader in its Delhi unit.
  • Vidisha Baliyan, a 21-year-old girl from Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar city, was crowned the Miss Deaf World 2019 title. The international beauty pageant was held in Mbombela, South Africa. She is a former international tennis player who represented India in the Deaflympics and also won a silver medal.
  • Padma Awardee Sudarsan Pattnaik has won the People’s Choice Award at a prestigious sand sculpting festival in the U.S. Pattnaik was participating in the 2019 Revere Beach International Sand Sculpting Festival in Boston, Massachusetts. He won the People’s Choice Award for his sand sculpture ‘Stop Plastic Pollution, Save Our Ocean’.
  • Indian Space Research Organisation launched Chandrayaan 2 from Satish Dhawan Space Center at Sriharikota. It was launched by GSLV MkIII-M1 Vehicle at 14:43 hours IST. The lander-Vikram will land near South Pole of the moon on Sep 7, 2019. Besides being India’s 2nd mission to the moon it is 1st-ever mission to be spearheaded by two women – M. Vanitha, data specialist and Ritu Karidhal, mission director for spacecraft aspect.
  • U.S. celebrates the Apollo 11 mission’s 50th year anniversary. In the celebrations, new statues of Astronaut Neil Armstrong were unveiled and an education center was dedicated to him in Ohio, US.
  • International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde has submitted her resignation as IMF chief. She had served as the IMF chief since 2011. David Lipton will remain the IMF Acting Managing Director in the interim period. Christine Lagarde was the first woman to head the IMF.
  • China has gifted warship ‘P625’ to Sri Lanka. As a new member of the Lankan Navy, the ‘P625’ frigate will be mainly used for offshore patrol, environment monitoring and anti-piracy combats.
  • The Non-Aligned Movement ministerial meeting was held in Caracas, Venezuela. Theme for 2019 Meet was- Promotion and Consolidation of Peace through Respect for International Law. The ministerial meeting brought together 120 member nations as well as 7 observer countries, 10 multilaterals international organizations including the United Nations (UN), and 14 specially invited nations. NAM was established in Belgrade in 1961 during Cold War so as to unite developing countries that are not part of any collective defense pacts in interest of any major power. It was a joint initiative of former Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and Yugoslav President Josip Broz Tito. It was formed in wake of decolonization processes in Africa, Asia and other parts of world around values of independence, sovereignty, equality and territorial integrity.
  • The International Monetary Fund has lowered its annual growth forecast for India from 7.3% to 7% in financial year 2019-20. The IMF’s stance reflects a weaker-than-expected outlook for domestic demand.
  • Boris Johnson will replace Theresa May as Britain’s next Prime Minister. Boris Johnson, who was the face of the 2016 Brexit referendum, won the votes of 92,153 members of the Conservative party. Queen Elizabeth will formally appoint Johnson before he will enter Downing Street.
  • Apple has announced the acquisition of chip-maker Intel’s smartphone modem business for $1 billion.
  • OYO Hotels & Homes has formally announced its acquisition of co-working venture Innov8. OYO will operate the firm Innov8 as an independent brand, and alongside its existing co-working operations.
  • IBM acquired American software company Red Hat Inc in $34 billion for ramp up its cloud computing business. This is company’s biggest acquisition in its more than 100-year.
  • US company, Ebix has announced the acquisition of travel portal Yatra Online for $337.8 million. Now, Yatra has become the part of Ebix’s EbixCash travel portfolio, forming India’s one of the “largest and most profitable” travel services companies.
  • The United Nations observes 11 July every year as World Population Day. This year’s World Population Day calls for global attention to the unfinished business of the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development.
  • The United Nations observes 15 July every year as World Youth Skills Day. This year the UN’s observance of the World Youth Skills Day will shed light on the mechanisms needed to operationalize lifelong learning and raise awareness about the importance of youth skills development.
  • World Health Organization observe 28 July every year as “World Hepatitis Day” to step up national and international efforts on hepatitis. The date of 28 July was chosen because it is the birthday of Nobel-prize winning scientist Dr Baruch Blumberg, who discovered hepatitis B virus (HBV) and developed a diagnostic test and vaccine for the virus. The theme for 2019 is “Invest in eliminating hepatitis”.
  • India remembers its brave hearts on 26 July which is celebrated as Kargil Vijay Diwas. On this day, the country remembers the extreme valor, sacrifice and exemplary courage of Indian soldiers during 1999 Kargil war. This year nation is celebrating the 20 years of victory in Kargil war.
  • Every year 29 July is celebrated across the world as Global Tiger Day to create awareness about tiger conservation and protection of natural habitat of tigers. India is home to 2967 tigers or more than the 70% of the wild tigers that inhabit the world, according to the All India Tiger Estimation report 2018. The number of tigers has increased considerably from 2014.  Madhya Pradesh saw highest number at 526, followed by Karnataka (524), Uttarakhand (442), Maharashtra (312) and Tamil Nadu (264).
  • International Cricket Council has inducted India’s batting icon Sachin Tendulkar, South African pace legend Allan Donald and two-times World Cup-winning Australian woman cricketer Cathryn Fitzpatrick into the ICC’s Hall of Fame. He is 6th Indian to be inducted in ICC Hall of Fame. Other Indians on the list are Bishan Singh Bedi, Sunil Gavaskar, Kapil Dev, Anil Kumble, Rahul Dravid.
  • The 3rd edition of Khelo India Youth Games 2020 will be held in Guwahati. The Games will see a participation of more than 10,000 athletes and officials. It will be conducted in partnership with Indian Olympic Association (IOA), School Games Federation of India (SGFI) & Assam as host State. Khelo India programme’s inaugural edition was held in New Delhi in 2018, while Pune hosted 2nd edition in 2019.
  • Shiva Thapa became India’s first gold-medalist at the President’s Cup boxing tournament after getting a walkover in the finals in Astana, Kazakhstan. Making his international debut in the newly-introduced Olympic category of 63kg, Thapa was to fight Kazakhstan’s Zakir Safiullin in the summit clash but his opponent had to pull out due to injury.
  • International Cricket Council has suspended Zimbabwe for failing to ensure there is no government interference in its running of the sport. ICC funding has been withdrawn and the country will be barred from participating at ICC events. 
  • England lifted the ICC Cricket World Cup Trophy 2019 at the Lord’s cricket stadium in London. England defeated New Zealand with more number of boundaries in the Super Over thriller in the grand finale of ICC Cricket World Cup Trophy 2019.
    • Player of the tournament: Kane Williamson (New Zealand).
    • Player of the Match Award: Ben Stokes (England).
    • Highest run scorer of the tournament: Rohit Sharma (India).
    • Highest wicket taker of the tournament: Mitchell Starc (Australia).
  • Serbian Novak Djokovic won his fifth Wimbledon title after defeating Swiss tennis ace Roger Federer. This is Djokovic’s 16th Grand Slam and 5th Wimbledon title. He is now level with Bjorn Borg as a five-time Wimbledon winner.
  • Sports and Youth Affairs Minister conferred Arjuna Awards to tennis player Rohan Bopanna and Women cricketer Smriti Mandhana.
  • Indian sprinter Hima Das extended her sensational run by claiming her fifth gold of the month as she returned to her pet 400m competition with a season-best time of 52.09 seconds in Nove Mesto, Czech Republic. She is fondly called the ‘Dhing Express’.
  • The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced that Bengaluru-based education and learning app Byju’s, which is owned by Think and Learn Private Limited, has replaced Oppo India as the official Team India sponsor.
  • Egan Bernal became the 1st Colombian to win the Tour de France which finished in Paris, France. He beat the defending champion Geraint Thomas of Britain by 1 minute 11 seconds. The 22-year-old Bernal has also become the youngest rider to win the race in 110 years. The Tour de France is an annual men’s multiple stage bicycle race.
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