Daily Current Affairs | Daily GK Updates : 23rd May 2019
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Current Affairs (National)
♦ Lokshabha election The NDA returns
- The return of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government to power does indicate a couple of things. First, there will be continuity in policy stance, which is good for the country. The second is that some of the economic issues that had taken Centrestage like employment, economic stagnation, falling consumption etc. did not matter in terms of affecting the decision of the electorate.
- It is not surprising that the Bharatiya janata Party (BJP) campaign this time was not talking about development or the Gujarat model, but other political issues and economic issues focused on the lowest common denominator which struck the right cord.
♦ Chandrababu Naidu to submit his resignation as Andhra CM after TDP decimated in state
- As YSRCP decimates the ruling TDP in Andhra Pradesh, AP Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu is set to submit his resignation by the end of the day, reports ANI.
- With YSRCP leading in 152 of the 175 seats at the time of publishing, Jagan Mohan Reddy is all set to become the next Chief Minister of the state. In the wake of this massive loss, TDP chief Naidu will reportedly be sending his resignation to the Governor by Thursday evening.
Banking and Finance
♦ ADB to provide $750-mn loan to fund railway track electrification in India
- The Asian Development Bank (ADB) on Thursday said it has signed an agreement to provide $750-million loan to Indian Railway Finance Corporation (IRFC).
- This would be the largest single non-sovereign loan ever committed by ADB and would fund the Railways Track Electrification Project.
- “IRFC, an entity owned by the Government of India, will use the proceeds from the loan to install electric traction equipment along approximately 3,378 kilometers of existing railway lines, which will enable the migration of passenger and freight traffic from diesel to electric traction,” ADB said in a press release.
♦ EU, China, Thailand seek to join WTO consultation over India’s ICT products tariff
- The European Union, China, and Thailand have expressed interest to join consultations in a case filed by Japan at the WTO against India’s import duties on certain information and communication technology products, including mobile phones.
- Singapore, Canada and Chinese Taipei too have earlier sought to join this dispute consultation against India under the WTO’s dispute settlement body.
- According to a communication of EU, China, and Thailand to the World Trade Organisation (WTO), these countries claimed that they have a substantial interest in the trade of information and communication technology (ICT) goods and in joining the consultation process.
- On May 14, Japan dragged India to the WTO over the import duties imposed on certain electronic goods, including telephones for cellular networks, machines for reception, conversion and transmission or regeneration of voice, images or other data; and parts of telephone sets.
♦ HDFC group overtakes Tata group as India’s most valuable
- The HDFC group has overtaken the 151-year-old Tata group to emerge as India’s most valuable by way of market capitalization (m-cap).
- According to a report in the Economic Times, the combined market value of the five listed companies of the HDFC group – HDFC, HDFC Bank, HDFC Life, HDFC Asset Management and Gruh Finance – stood at Rs 11.66 lakh crore as on May 20, 2019 while the combined m-cap of 29 Tata group companies stood at Rs 11.64 lakh crore, about Rs 2,000 crore less than that of the HDFC group.
♦ Tech Mahindra signs Rs 300 crore defence contract with Indian Navy
- Tech Mahindra today announced its biggest defence order worth over Rs 300 crore with the Indian Navy. As part of the ‘Armed Forces Secure Access Card’ (AFSAC) Project, Tech Mahindra will implement RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) based Access Control System across all naval bases and ships.
- The new AFSAC Card will replace the existing paper based Identity Card for all Navy personnel including dependents and ex-servicemen. Using the CMMI (Capability Maturity Model Integration) level 5 processes, Tech Mahindra will develop a secure application to manage the access control devices, network devices and the AFSAC Card through a data center. Scheduled to be implemented over the next two years, the project will ensure smooth issuance, handling, administration, management and life cycle support of AFSAC Cards on turnkey basis.
♦ Bhawana Kanth Is India’s First Woman Pilot to Qualify for Combat Missions
- Flight Lieutenant Bhawana Kanth, who was commissioned into the Indian Air Force as one of the first women fighter pilots in 2016, has created history by becoming the first woman to qualify for combat missions on a fighter jet. She has successfully completed the operational syllabus for carrying out combat missions on MiG-21 Bison aircraft, during the day.
- “She is the first woman fighter pilot to be qualified to undertake missions on a fighter aircraft by day.
♦ Pakistan successfully test-fires ballistic missile Shaheen-II capable of hitting India
- “Shaheen-II Missile is capable of carrying both conventional and nuclear warheads upto a range of 1,500 km. Shaheen-II is a highly capable missile which fully meets Pakistan’s strategic needs towards maintenance of desired deterrence stability in the region,” the Army said.
- Pakistan on Thursday successfully test-fired surface-to-surface ballistic missile Shaheen-II, capable of hitting targets as far as 1,500 kilometers away, bringing major Indian cities under its range.
- The Pakistan Army said in a statement that the launch was aimed at ensuring operational readiness of the Army Strategic Forces Command.
♦ 23 May -World Turtle Day
- Throwing a spotlight on freshwater turtles ahead of World Turtle Day on May 23, the India Biodiversity Portal has initiated a ‘Turtle Spotting Week’ as part of a unique exercise to document the creatures across India.
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