Daily GK : 31st March 2018

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International Affairs

1. 5th Indo-Kyrgyzstan joint training exercise ‘Khanjar V’ conclude in Mizoram

  • The 5th Indo-Kyrgyzstan joint training exercise ‘Khanjar V’ conclude at Counter Insurgency Jungle Warfare School, Vairengte Mizoram.
  • “The exercise was a success and has taught valuable lessons to the troops of both the countries.”
  • The exercise involved insertion of troops by slithering from helicopters and destroying a terrorist hideout.
  • It demonstrated the commitment of both armies in working closely with each other to address the growing issue of global terrorism in all its forms.

National Affairs

2. India receives the first LNG cargo consignment from the United States

  • India received the first liquefied natural gas (LNG) cargo from the United States at the Dabhol regasification terminal in Maharashtra.
  • Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan received the first-ever shipment of 1.2 lakh tonne LNG.
  • Under the long-term contract of 20 years, Gail will be getting 22-24 shipments per annum till the breakwater is built. Once that is done we will be handling 80-90 ships a year.
  • Currently, due to lack of the breakwater, the Dabhol terminal can operate only eight months.

Note:

  • Gail signed two, 20-year LNG supply agreements potentially worth $32 billion for LNG exports from the Dominion Cove Point project in Maryland and the Sabine Pass project in Louisiana in 2011 and 2013 respectively.

3. India becomes the world’s No 1 almond importer

  • India has surpassed China and Spain to emerge as the world’s largest consumer of the nut in recent times.
  • Almond imports into India rose 7 per cent to worth $600 million (about Rs. 3,900 crore) last year against $560 million (Rs. 3,640 crore) in 2016, according to Almond Board of California data.
  • California accounts for 80 per cent of the world’s almond production.
  • In 2016-17, world almond production stood at 2.01 billion pounds, while it has already hit 2.25 billion pounds this year, till February.

4. Madhya Pradesh state’s Kadaknath chicken gets GI tag

  • Kadaknath chicken of Madhya Pradesh state got the Geographical Indication (GI) Tag.
  • After receiving GI tag, now no one else can use the name Kadaknath Chicken while selling any other black chicken.
  • The GI tag was awarded by the Chennai based Geographical Indication Registry and Intellectual Property India.
  • The demand of Kadaknath chicken very high because of its low cholesterol and high protein content.
  • The breed is native to Jhabua, Alirajpur and parts of Dhar district of Madhya Pradesh.

5. Madhya Pradesh Govt. raised the retirement age of state government employees to 62 years

  • The Madhya Pradesh government raised the retirement age of state government employees to 62 years from 60 years.
  • The announcement made by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan while speaking to reporters in Bhopal.

Note:

  • Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister – Shivraj Singh Chouhan
  • The capital of Madhya Pradesh – Bhopal
  • Governor of Madhya Pradesh – Anandiben Patel

Banking & Finance

6. RBI changes methodology used by debt market players for bond valuation

  • In a bid to prevent the possibility of manipulation in the prices of securities, especially government securities (G-Secs), on the last trading day of a quarter, the Reserve Bank of India has changed the methodology used by debt market players, including banks and primary dealers, for their valuation.
  • As per a central bank directive, security/bond valuation will be based on the weighted average price of the last half-an-hour of trading on the last trading day of every quarter against the last traded price earlier.
  • The methodology as to how the bonds are valued is crucial for mark-to-market (MTM) purposes. MTM entails recording the price or value of a security to reflect the current market value rather than the book value.
  • Emphasising that this move is to normalise any aberration, the banker quoted above explained that the RBI has made the change so that there is no manipulation of the last trade by a cartel of banks.

Appointment

7. Senior bureaucrat Chandra Bhushan Kumar appointed as Deputy EC

  • As part of a major bureaucratic reshuffle effected by the government, Chandra Bhushan Kumar has been appointed as Deputy Election Commissioner.
  • Chandra Bhushan Kumar is a 1995 batch IAS officer of union territories cadre, has been appointed to the post for five years.
  • The Election Commissioners are assisted by Deputy Election Commissioners.
  • A total of 13 officers have been appointed as joint secretaries in different central government departments.

Note:

  • The Election Commission of India was formed on 25 January 1950 is an autonomous constitutional authority responsible for administering election processes in India.
  • Election Commission headquarters is in New Delhi
  • The current Chief Election Commissioner of India is Om Prakash Rawat.
  • Under Chief Election Commissioner, there are two Election Commissioner – Sunil Arora and Ashok Lavasa.

8. Former diplomat Rosemary DiCarlo becomes first female UN political chief

  • Former diplomat of United States Rosemary DiCarlo appointed as the Chief of UN Political Affairs.
  • With this, she became the first woman to head UN political affairs, one of the most high-profile positions at the world body.
  • She will succeed American Jeffrey Feltman who held the post of under-secretary-general for political affairs since 2012.

 Note:

  • DiCarlo also served as deputy assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs and director for United Nations affairs at the national security council in Washington.
  • Since 2015, She is the president of the National Committee on American Foreign Policy, an organization dedicated to conflict resolution.

Obituaries

9. Former Manipur Chief Minister R K Dorendra Singh passes away

  • Former Manipur Chief Minister R K Dorendra Singh passed away. He was 83 years old.
  • He was the Chief Minister of Manipur state four times between 1974 to 1993.
  • Before becoming the chief minister, he was the Speaker of Manipur Assembly.

Sports

10. N. Korea to take part in next two Olympics Games in Japan and China

  • North Korea will take part in the next two Olympic Games in Japan and China, said International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach.
  • Athletes from North and South Korea marched under a unified peninsula flag at the opening ceremony in Pyeongchang, and the two Koreas have seen a significant thaw in tensions since.

*** Thank You ***

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