Daily Current Affairs -14th March ’19

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GS-II (Governance)

United States to set up six nuclear power plants in India

  • India and the United States have committed to strengthen bilateral security and civil nuclear cooperation, including the establishment of six US nuclear power plants in India.
  • US reaffirmed its strong support of India’s early membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group.
  • This commitment was made at the 9th round of the India-US Strategic Security Dialogue held in Washington DC yesterday.
  • The Ministry of External Affairs, in a statement said, the Indian delegation was led by Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale, while the US delegation was led by Andrea Thompson, Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security.
  • India and US also exchanged views on a wide range of global security and nonproliferation challenges.
  • They reaffirmed their commitment to work together to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems and to deny access to such weapons by terrorists and non-state actors.

India, united States seek tangible and irreversible action by Pakistan against terrorist groups and leaders

  • India and the United States have sought tangible and irreversible action by Pakistan against terrorist groups and leaders.
  • US National Security Advisor John Bolton in his meeting with visiting Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale said that the Washington stands shoulder-to-shoulder with New Delhi in its fight against terrorism.
  • Bolton said that he met Mr. Gokhale to advance progress on the US-India strategic partnership and shared vision for the Indo-Pacific, as well as reiterate that the US stands shoulder-to-shoulder with India in the fight against terrorism.
  • Post the Pulwama attack by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad, Bolton and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have emerged as strong supporters of the India-US relationship.

1st meeting between India and Pakistan to discuss, finalize modalities for Kartarpur Corridor to be held today

  • The first meeting between India and Pakistan to discuss and finalize the modalities for Kartarpur Corridor will be held at Indian side of the Attari-Wagah border today.
  • Both Indian and Pakistani delegations reached Amritsar yesterday to participate in the meeting. India has also proposed a technical level discussion on the alignment of the corridor today.
  • The meeting is being held in keeping with Government’s decision to operationalize the Kartarpur Corridor on the occasion of the 550th Birth Anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev in November this year.
  • It also aims at meeting the long-pending public demand to have easy and smooth access to the holy Gurudwara in Pakistan.
  • India has identified 50 acres of land for the Kartarpur Sahib corridor.
  • The Passenger Terminal Building complex, to be built in two phases, will be a state of the art green building and display murals/photographs based on rich Indian cultural values.
  • The design of the complex is inspired by the symbol ‘Khanda’ which symbolizes values of oneness and humanity. The building will facilitate movement of nearly five thousand pilgrims every day.
  • Robust security system will be put in place in and around the Passenger Terminal Building. Sources said, efforts are being made to ensure that the first phase of the Passenger Terminal Building become operational well before the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev.
  • New Delhi maintains that security is of paramount importance for the Indian side and discussion with Pakistan is only related to pilgrimage to the Kartarpur Sahib.

EC appointed Special Observers Team to visit J& K today

  • The Election Commission appointed Special Observers Team is visiting Srinagar today for fresh assessment of ground situation for holding the Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir.
  • Official sources said the three-member team comprising of Vinod Zutshi, Dr Noor Mohammad and A.S. Gill, will interact with the representatives of mainstream political parties, district election officers, security officials and other stakeholders today.
  • The team would hold similar exercise tomorrow in Jammu.
  • The team would also meet the Chief Secretary and state police chief in Jammu. Earlier, the Election Commission led by Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora had visited the state on 4 and 5th of this month before announcement of the Lok Sabha elections.


GS-II ( International Affairs)

US Senate votes to end support for Yemen war

  • The US Senate rebuking Donald Trump’s foreign policy and his alliance with Riyadh has voted to end support for the bloody Saudi-led war effort in Yemen.
  • The Senate’s bipartisan vote was 54 to 46, with seven Republicans defying the President and aligning with Democrats.
  • Lawmakers in the Republican-controlled chamber approved a historic curtailment of the Presidential war powers.
  • It directs Mr. Trump to remove United States Armed Forces from hostilities in or affecting the Republic of Yemen within 30 days.
  • The text will now move to the Democrat-led House of Representatives which is likely to pass the latest effort.
  • However, the White House has threatened a veto, calling the measure “flawed” and saying it would harm bilateral relationships in the region and hurt Washington’s ability to fight extremism.
  • But its full passage would set a historic marker as it would be the first measure passed by Congress to invoke the 1973 War Powers Resolution to directly curtail a president’s use of military powers.

 Boeing recommends temporary suspension of its entire world fleet of 737 MAX aircraft

  • One of the largest global aircraft manufacturer Boeing has recommended a temporary suspension of its entire world fleet of the 737 MAX aircraft.
  • The move comes after several countries, including India, China, European Union and the United States banned the use of the aircraft in wake of the Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed all 157 people on board.
  • Dennis Muilenburg, Boeing’s President, CEO and chairman in a statement said that the company was doing everything to understand the cause of the accidents in partnership with the investigators and help ensure this does not happen again.
  • Ethiopia Airlines crash was the second accident involving the US-based aerospace giant’s MAX 8 model within six months.
  • Last October, a Lion Air-operated MAX 8 went down in Indonesia in October, killing 189 people. Both crashes took place shortly after takeoff and have prompted intense scrutiny over the plane’s control systems.
  • There were 371 of the 737 MAX family jets in operation before this week’s groundings.
  • Boeing has grounded an entire fleet of planes before.
  • In 2013, Boeing told airlines not to fly their 787 Dreamliners because the planes’ batteries were catching fire.

India awards 200 Golden Jubilee Scholarships to Nepali students

  • The Indian Embassy in Nepal on Wednesday awarded 200 Golden Jubilee Scholarships to meritorious Nepali students for continuing various undergraduate courses at colleges and universities.
  • Awarding the certificates to the students in Kathmandu, Nepal’s Secretary of Education Khaga Raj Baral said, India has been providing valuable support for the development of education in Nepal.
  • He said, with the Government of India scholarships, Nepali students have excelled in various fields and it has helped in human resource development of Nepal. In his address, Indian Ambassador to Nepal, Manjeev Singh Puri advised students to achieve personal and professional fulfilment.
  • He said, it will contribute towards Nepal’s socio-economic development and will further deepen and strengthen India-Nepal relations.
  • This year the scholarships recipients covered for 36 undergraduate courses including MBBS, BDS, BE, BSc, BBA and BCom etc.
  • The students have been shortlisted from 50 districts of Nepal. They include around 45 per cent girls and 8 per cent differently able students.
  • The Government of India had started the prestigious Golden Jubilee Scholarship Scheme in 2002 to mark the completion of 50 years of India-Nepal Economic Cooperation.
  • Under this scheme, an MBBS/BDS student receives 4000 Nepali Rupees (NRs.) per month for five years, a BE student receives 4000 NRs. per month for four years and students studying in other under-graduate courses receive 3000 NRs.per month for three years.
  • So far more than 2350 Nepali students have been awarded the Golden Jubilee Scholarships from across 77 districts of Nepal.
  • The Government of India provides a total 3000 scholarships in Medical, Science, Veterinary Sciences, Pharmacology, Dental science, Agriculture, Engineering, Arts, Commerce, Science, Computer Science, Nursing and many other disciplines to study in Universities and Colleges in Nepal and India.
  • These Scholarships are part of India’s efforts to support human resources development in Nepal for the overall socio-economic development of the Himalayan nation and its people.


Zinedine reappointed as coach of Real Madrid

  • Zinedine zindane has been re-appointed as the coach of Spanish foot ball club real Madrid till 2022
  • He replaced santigo solari, who was sacked after less than five months in charge.
  • Zindane resigned from the club after leading it to three consecutive champions’ legue titles.

GS-II (Ecomony)

10 countries added in tax black list

  • The European Union expanded its tax haven blacklist by 10 counties, adding the UAE and BERMUDA on 12th march 2019.
  • The list, now 15 countries long, was first drawn up in 2017 in wake of several scandals, including the Panama Papers.
  • 7 countries will be moved back from greylist because reform commitments had not been met.
  • These are Aruba, Belize, Bermuda, Fiji, Oman, Vanuatu and Dominica.


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