Important current affairs of 03 January 2019

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This post contains important current affairs (National, International, Business and Sports) of 03 January 2019.

    ic: Daily Current Affairs - Business

    • Private sector lender RBL Bank appointed Pankaj Sharma as its chief operations officer (COO). Prior to this, Sharma was heading retail operations of Axis Bank. Under his leadership, the ATM channel, phone banking and branch automation and digital initiatives at Axis Bank took shape.
    • The government has appointed Hemant Bhargava, Managing Director, Life Insurance Corporation of India, as the Acting Chairman. The move comes after VK Sharma retired from the top job at LIC on December 31. While traditionally the senior-most MD is appointed the chairman, Bhargava is due to retire in July 2019.
    • The cabinet has approved the merger of Vijaya Bank & Dena Bank with Bank of Baroda. After this merger, Bank of Baroda will become the third biggest public sector bank. The merger will be effective from April 1. This is also the first ever three-way merger in Indian banking. Bank of Baroda (BoB) finalised the share swap ratio for the merger of Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank with itself. As per the Scheme of Amalgamation, shareholders of Vijaya Bank will get 402 equity shares of BoB for every 1,000 shares held. In case of Dena Bank, its shareholders will get 110 shares for every 1,000 shares of BoB.
    • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) set up a committee under former SEBI Chairman UK Sinha to address issues regarding the sustainability of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). This comes after RBI allowed one-time restructuring of MSME loans of up to Rs.25 crore.

    ic: Daily Current Affairs - National

    • ISRO Planning to Launch 32 Space Missions in 2019. The missions include the second lunar mission Chandrayaan-2 (Rs.800-crore mission) to land on the moon with lander and rover. India's maiden human space mission in 2021-22, Gaganyaan, will also be pursued this year. Among the ISRO's achievements in 2018 were launch of the heaviest satellite GSAT-29 (3,423 kg) on November 14 and building the heaviest communication satellite GSAT-11 (5,854 kg), launched on December 5 onboard the Arianespace space agency's rocket from French Guiana on the north Atlantic coast of South America.
    • The Union Home Ministry approved a Uttar Pradesh government proposal to rename Allahabad as Prayagraj. In October 2018, the UP government had proposed the change in name of Allahabad to Prayagraj. The Home Ministry clears the name change proposals after the Ministry of Railways, the Department of Posts and the Survey of India confirm that no city, town or village has similar names.
    • In Kerala, around 50 lakhs of women assembled under the aegis of the Left Democratic Front (LDF) to create an almost unbroken human wall that stretched 620 km from Kasaragod in north Kerala to Thiruvananthapuram in the south on 1st January 2019. Marshalled by the Kerala government and a section of Hindu organisations, the wall was organised against the backdrop of the Supreme Court verdict on Sabarimala. The programme ended with a joint pledge to harness the power of renaissance principles to insulate society against revanchist forces that sought to push Kerala back to the dark ages of casteism and discriminatory religious practices. The event was organised by the ruling CPI(M) along with over 176 other socio-political organisations, including the CPI, Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam and the Kerala Pulayar Maha Sabha.
    • President Ram Nath Kovind nominated Justice Arjan Kumar Sikri as Executive Chairman of National Legal Services Authority (NALSA). His appointment is effective from December 31, 2018.
    • Veer Savarkar International Airport in Port Blair has been declared as an authorized Immigration Check post for entry into/exit from India with valid travel documents for all classes of passengers. The announcement was made by Information, Public Relations and Tourism Division of Andaman and Nicobar Administration. This decision of the Union Government will open up the Port Blair Airport for direct international flight and immigration facilities.
    • Veteran Kannada actor CH Lokanath passed away after suffering cardiac arrest. He was 91. Lokanath was in the Kannada film industry for nearly six decades and was affectionately addressed as 'Uncle Lokanath' by his fans. He had acted in over 600 movies and more than 1,000 plays. His famous movies are Bhootayyana Maga Ayyu, Minchina Ota, Nagarahaavu, Nodi Swami Navidru Heege, Katha Sangama and Kittu Puttu.
    • Saurabh Kumar has been appointed as the Director General of Ordnance Factories (DGOF) and chairman of the Ordnance Factory Board (OFB). Kumar, a 1982-batch Indian Ordnance Factory Service officer, is an M-Tech in mechanical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur. An expert in the manufacture of ordnance, Kumar was on deputation to the Ministry of Defence as the director of planning and coordination from 2002 to 2009.
    • Manoj Das, an eminent English and Odia writer, received the Kabi Samrat Upendra Bhanja National Award for Lifetime Achievement in Literature. This ceremony was instituted by the Berhampur University, Odisha. During the 53rd foundation day ceremony, the university also honoured noted folk dance guru Nabaghana Parida with Dakshin Odisha Loksanakruti Samman.
    • The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has recently launched Samwad with Students as part of its outreach programme. The Indian Space agency will engage youngsters across the country in activities concerning space science under this programme. The new conversation mission will inspire students cutting across schools and colleges. During the inauguration in Bengaluru, 40 students and 10 teachers from select schools interacted with ISRO Chairman Dr. K Sivan about the Indian Space Programme and their benefits to the common man.

    ic: Daily Current Affairs - International

    • NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft broke a record after successfully entering into orbit around the asteroid Bennu - the smallest cosmic object ever to be orbited by a spacecraft. NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, 110 million kilometers away, carried out a single, eight-second burn of its thrusters. The manoeuvre placed the spacecraft into orbit around the asteroid Bennu. The spacecraft will circle Bennu about 1.75 kilometres from its centre, closer than any other spacecraft has come to its celestial object of study.

    ic: Daily Current Affairs - Sports

    • Veteran cricket coach Ramakant Achrekar, who trained Bharat Ratna Sachin Tendulkar and Vinod Kambli, among others, passed away following a heart attack. He was 87 and breathed his last at his home in Dadar. Achrekar, honoured with Padma Shri in 2010 and Dronacharya Award in 1990, was instrumental in shaping the careers of Tendulkar, Kambli and over a dozen other top cricket stars.
    • A 12-year-old Indian-origin student Dhruv Manoj from Singapore has bagged two gold medals at the World Memory Championships held in Hong Kong from 20th December to 22nd December 2018. Dhruv Manoj won in the "names and faces" and "random words" disciplines, beating 56 other contestants in the "kids category". Dhruv has mastered the Roman memory technique of creating "memory palaces", which works by associating the ideas or objects to be memorized with scenes imagined at familiar locations, such as one's house.

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    ic: Daily Current Affairs Quiz


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