Daily GK : 21st March 2018

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International Affairs

1. Myanmar President Htin Kyaw resigns after two years in the position

  • Myanmar’s President Htin Kyaw (72-year) resigned after two years in the position (30th March 2016 – 20th March 2018).
  • According to the constitution, Myanmar’s Vice President Myint Swe, (former general) will move into the role until a new president is in place.
  • The President of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar is the head of state and the head of government of Myanmar and heads the Cabinet of Myanmar.

Note:

  • The president is elected by members of parliament, not by the general population.
  • The Presidential Electoral College, a three-committee body made up of Amyotha Hluttaw, Pyithu Hluttaw members of parliament, or military-appointed lawmakers, nominates a candidate for the presidency.
  • The candidate with the highest number of votes from the Electoral College is elected president, while the two other candidates become vice-presidents.
  • Myanmar State Counsellor- Aung San Suu Kyi, Capital- Naypyidaw.

2. First G20 Ministerial Meeting Held in Argentina

  • The first G20 meeting of finance ministers and central bank governors began in Buenos Aires,  Argentina with the presence of 57 delegations from countries and institutions.
  • The summit, held at the capital’s Center of Exhibitions and Conventions (CEC), gathered 22 finance ministers, 17 central bank governors and 10 heads of international organisations, including IMF Director-General Christine Lagarde.
Note:
  • The second meeting of G20 finance ministers and central bank governors will be held in Washington, the USA.
  • Argentina Capital- Buenos Aires, Currency- Argentine peso.

3. India & Hong Kong signed double taxation avoidance (DTAA) agreement

  • India signed a double taxation avoidance agreement (DTAA) with Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) on to improve transparency in tax matters.
  • The agreement has been signed by Indian Ambassador to China ‘Gautam Bambawale’ and Hong Kong Finance Secretary ‘Paul Chan Mo-po’ in Hong Kong.
  • It will prevent double taxation and boost exchange of information between the two contracting parties.
  • It will also improve transparency in tax matters and will help curb tax evasion and tax avoidance.

National Affairs

4. University Grant Commission (UGC) gives full autonomy to 60 higher educational institutions

  • According to the Human Resource Development Minister Prakash Javadekar, The University Grant Commission (UGC) has accorded autonomy to 60 higher education institutions, which have maintained high academic standards.
  • In Sixty institutions (Central Universities-5, State Universities-21, deemed-24, Private Universities-2 and colleges-8), have been granted autonomy under the Autonomous Colleges Regulation.
  • These universities will remain within the ambit of the UGC but will have the freedom to start new courses, off-campus centers, skill development courses, research parks and any other new academic programs.
  • They will have the freedom to hire foreign faculty, enroll foreign students, give incentive-based emoluments to the faculty, enter into academic collaborations and run open distance learning programmes.

Note:

  • Five Central Universities are Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) Delhi, University of Hyderabad, Banaras Hindu University, Aligarh Muslim University and the English and Foreign Languages University in Telangana.

5. 106th Indian Science Congress (ISC) to be held in Bhopal next year

  • The 106th edition of the Indian Science Congress will be held next year from 3rd to 7th January at the ‘Barkatullah University’ in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.
  • The theme of the106th Indian Science Congress will be “Future India: Science and Technology”.
  • Indian Science Congress Association (ISCA) is a premier scientific organization of India with headquarters at Kolkata, West Bengal.

Note:

  • The association started in the year 1914 in Kolkata.
  • It has a membership of more than 30,000 scientists.
  • The 105th Session of the Indian Science Congress held at Imphal (Manipur University) this year (2018) with the theme “Reaching the unreached through science and technology”.

6. India Post paid tribute by releasing special cover on Stephen Hawking

  • India Post paid tribute to theoretical physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking by issuing a special cover on him at an event in the GPO Mumbai.
  • The postal department is paying tribute to the legendary scientist by releasing the special cover in all its 22 Circles.
  • Hawking passed away at the age of 76 on 14th March in his home in Cambridge in the United Kingdom.

Important Dates

7. International Day of Forests being observed : 21st March

  • The United Nations General Assembly designated 21st March as the International Day of Forests to celebrate and raise awareness of the importance of all types of forests.
  • The theme of 2018 is ‘Forests and Sustainable Cities’.
  • This global celebration of forests provides a platform to raise awareness of the importance of all types of woodlands, trees, and celebrate the ways in which they sustain and protect us.

8. World Poetry Day being observed : 21st March

  • The World Poetry Day is observed every year on 21st March to promote the reading, writing, publishing, and teaching of poetry throughout the world.
  • A decision to proclaim 21st March as World Poetry Day was adopted during UNESCO’s 30th session held in Paris in 1999.

9. Parsis in India & abroad celebrate their New year’s day, Navroz

  • Parsis in India & abroad are celebrating their New year’s ‘Navroz’ with great enthusiasm.
  • Parsis in Mumbai are visiting nearby Agiaries to offer special Tehveel-e-Navroz prayers on the occasion of Navroz.

Note:

  • Nowruz is the day of the vernal equinox and marks the beginning of spring in the Northern Hemisphere.
  • It marks the first day of the first month (Farvardin) in the Iranian calendar.

Books & Authors

10. Indian Army releases a book on Paramveer Chakra awardees ’Paramveer Parwane’

  • The chief of the Army Staff ‘General Bipin Rawat’ has released a book on Paramveer Chakra Awardee ’Paramveer Parwane’.
  • The book is written by Dr. Prabhakiran Jain and published by ‘Medha Books’.
  • The book illustrates the bravery of Paramveer Chakra Awardees from 1947 to 1965.
  • The book has eleven short stories, poems, and songs highlighting the history of the battles in which the brave soldiers sacrificed their lives and have shown the utmost courage & leadership while facing the enemy during War to protect the motherland.

Note:

  • Somnath Sharma (from 4 Kumaon Unit) was the first recipient of Paramveer Chakra.

 *** Thank You ***

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