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19.12.2016 TO 24.12.2016----DAILY GK BANKERS ADDA

19th December, 2016
Puerto Rico's Stephanie Del Valle crowned Miss World 2016
i. Puerto Rico's 19-year-old Stephanie Del Valle has been crowned as the Miss World 2016 at an event held in Maryland, US. 
ii. Miss Dominican Republic Yaritza Miguelina Reyes Ramirez was the first runner-up. Notably, Valle is the second Puerto Rican to hold the title after Wilnelia Merced won it in 1975. 
iii. India's Priyadarshini Chatterjee also reached the top 20.

Piyush Goyal to launch GARV-II app to ensure power access to all
i. To ensure transparency in the implementation of rural electrification programme, the Power Ministry will launch a new app, GARV-II, to provide real-time data of all six lakh villages of the country.
ii. Under this facility, village-wise; habitation-wise base line data on household electrification for all states provided by them has been incorporated. 
iii. Further, village-wise works sanctioned under DeenDayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY) have also been mapped to monitor the progress of works in each village.

PM Modi to unveil Vibrant Gujarat summit in January 2017
i. About 25-30 global CEOs and the heads of the multi national corporations will throng to Gujarat on January 10, 2017 for the 8th edition of biennial Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit (VGGS) 2017. 
ii.The global CEOs will be accompanied by almost an equal number of Indian corporate leaders, who will attend the Global CEO Round table, to be inaugurated by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Manipur Chief Minister inaugurates two new districts amid Naga protests
i. Manipur Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh has inaugurated two new districts Pherzawl and Noney. 
ii. Pherzawl carved out of Churachandpur the district, and Noney from Tamenglong district in Manipur.Now, the total number of the district is 11. 
iii.Manipur government resolved to create Kangpokpi, Jiribam, Noney, Tengnoupal, Pherzol, Kamjong and Kaching districts by carving up seven of the existing nine districts of the state on 8 December 2016.

Swasthya Raksha Programme launched by AYUSH Ministry
i. The Union AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy) Ministry has launched ‘Swasthya Raksha Programme’ to promote health and health education in villages.
ii.The programme was initiated through Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS), Central Council for Research in Homoeopathy (CCRH), Central Council for Research in Unani Medicine (CCRUM) and Central Council for Research in Siddha (CCRS). 
iii.It was launched by AYUSH Ministry in October 2015.

YES Bank, Ola tie up to provide cash at your doorstep
i.YES Bank, India’s fifth largest private sector bank has partnered with Ola, one of the popular mobile apps for transportation, to provide cash-on-demand at customer’s doorstep. 
ii.Customers will be able to use the Ola app to book a cab and opt for ‘cash at their doorsteps’ that will be enabled using Point-of-Sale (PoS) machines powered by YES Bank.

India beat Belgium 2-1 to win the hockey junior World Cup
i.India beat Belgium 2-1 to win the hockey junior World Cup in Lucknow on 18th December 2016. This is India’s second world title.
ii.India won their first title in 2001 in Hobart, Australia. 
iii.In 1997, India won silver after losing to Australia in the final in Milton Keynes, England. Belgium win a PC in the dying seconds of the match. Score to make it 1-2.

Former Planning Commission member Saumitra Chaudhuri passed away
i.Former Planning Commission member Saumitra Chaudhuri passed away in Sir Ganga Ram hospital on 18th December. 
ii.He was suffering from lung cancer. Chaudhuri, a noted economist, joined the Planning Commission as Member in June 2009.

20th December, 2016

International Human Solidarity Day 20 December 
i. The United Nations' (UN) International Human Solidarity Day is annually held on December 20 to celebrate unity in diversity. 
ii. It also aims to remind people on the importance of solidarity in working towards eradicating poverty.
iii. On International Human Solidarity Day, governments are reminded of their commitments to international agreements on the need for human solidarity as an initiative to fight against poverty.

India beat England by innings and 75 runs, win series 4-0
i.India has won the five-match test series against England, 3-0-1. 
ii.In the fifth and final test played at M. A. Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, England wrapped up the second innings at 207 in 88 overs on 20 December 2016.

iii. Virat Kohli is the man of the series for his 655 runs in the series.

Govt mulls merging cyber tribunal with TDSAT
i. As part of plans to merge some of the tribunals into larger entities to avoid identical functions, the government is looking to converge the Cyber Appellate Tribunal (CyAT) and Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal  (TDSAT).
 ii. According to Sources of the government   CyAT is proposed to be merged with the Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) and a Cabinet note to this effect will be moved shortly. 
iii. CyAT adjudicates matter related to Information Technology and is seen carrying much significance at a time when the government is pushing for digital payments.

PM launches major skill development projects in Kanpur

i.Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid foundation of the first-ever Indian Institute of Skills of the country at Kanpur in Uttar Pradesh 19 December 2016. 

ii.The institute is aimed at making youth more employable and self-reliant. The institute has been conceptualised by the Prime Minister during his visit to Singapore's Institute of Technical Education.
EPFO lowers interest rate on EPF to 8.65 percent for FY17
i. Employee's Provident Fund Organization EPFO decided to lower the interest on EPF deposits for the current fiscal to 8.65%, from 8.8% provided in 2015-16, for its over four crore subscribers. 
ii.The Employees Provident Fund Organisation's apex decision-making body, the Central Board of Trustees (CBT), has taken a decision to lower the interest rate to 8.65 percent for the current fiscal 2016-2017 from 8.8 in 2015-16.

India-Nepal Folk Crafts Festival kicks off in Kathmandu
i. The five-day India-Nepal Folk Crafts Festival (INCF-2016) begins in Kathmandu, Nepal on December 19, 2016 to promote cultural exchanges between the two countries. 
ii. The Main aim of the festival to promote crafts based bilateral relations and enhance cultural exchanges between the artisans of India and Nepal.

Justice J S Khehar appointed as Chief Justice of India
i. Justice J S Khehar has been appointed as the new Chief Justice of India after President Pranab Mukherjee’s approval. 
ii. Khehar, who led the five-judge constitution bench in the Supreme Court which had struck down the controversial NJAC Act for the appointment of judges, will replace Justice TS Thakur as the top judge. Thakur will be demitting office on January 3, 2017. 
iii.Justice Khehar, 64, will be the first Chief Justice from the Sikh community. He will be sworn in on January 4 and will hold the tenure for over seven months till August 27, 2017.

Single tribunal to decide all inter-state water disputes
i.The Centre has decided to set up a single, permanent Tribunal to adjudicate all inter-state river water disputes subsuming existing tribunals, a step which is aimed at resolving grievances of states in a speedy manner. 
ii. Besides the Tribunal, the government has also proposed to float some benches by amending the Inter-State Water Disputes Act, 1956 to look into disputes as and when required.iii. Unlike the Tribunal, the benches will cease to exist once the disputes are resolved.

World's oldest water sample found to be 2 billion years old

i.University of Toronto scientists have discovered the oldest water sample dating back to about two billion years, more than 500 million years more ancient than the previous oldest samples. 
ii.The water pool was found at a depth of nearly 3 kilometres in a Canadian mine. The discovery could give clues about life forms beneath the surface of other planets.

Atletico de Kolkata wins 2016 Hero Indian Super League beating Kerala Blasters 5-4

i. After a final that tasted like porridge, Atletico de Kolkata (ATK) regained the Indian Super League (ISL) title by beating Kerala Blasters. 

ii. ATK won by 5-4 against kerala blaster. It has finally ended and Atletico de Kolkata are the ones that have come out on top against all odds. 

Andy Murray wins record 3rd BBC Sports Personality of the Year
i. After claiming his second Wimbledon title and maiden ATP World Tour Finals crown, Britain's world number one Andy Murray won a record third BBC Sports Personality of the Year award. 
ii. Murray previously won the award in 2013 and 2015 after his London 2012 Olympic gold and maiden Wimbledon title in 2015.

Priyanka Chopra becomes Assam tourism brand ambassador
i.BJP led Assam government has roped in Bollywood actress, Priyanka Chopra as the brand ambassador of state tourism. 
ii.She will promote brand entity of "Awesome Assam". Chopra will visit Assam on December 24 and address international tour operators meet.

Harvard researchers create world’s smallest radio reciever 
i.Harvard researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) have built the world’s smallest radio receiver, made out of atomic scale defects in pink diamonds. 
ii.The tiny radio is robust and biocompatible, which means it can be used in all sorts of extreme applications, from a space probe headed to Venus to a pacemaker embedded in a human body.

World's first cloned goat with Cashmere wool born in China
i.The world's first cloned goat bearing superfine Cashmere wool was born in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. 
ii.The goat will be raised in a base for animal husbandry research conducted by experts from agricultural universities and academies in Inner Mongolia and southwest China's Yunnan Province.

Karun Nair scores triple century in test, 2nd Indian to do so.
i.Karun Nair became the second Indian to score a triple ton in Test cricket as the smashed unbeaten 303 runs off just 381 balls and powered India to their highest ever team total in Tests. 
ii.Eight years back, Virender Sehwag demoralised a star-studded South Africa unit as he made his way to second triple century in Test cricket. That was in Chennai where the opener smashed 319 runs for India, still the highest individual score for India.

Micromax, Uber join hands to offer integrated experience
i.Mobile phone brand Micromax Informatics, and taxi-hailing service Uber announced a partnership that will help Micromax customers book an Uber ride on their phones without having to download application.
ii.Through the partnership, Micromax aims to push nearly 100 million devices that offer an integrated experience with Uber over the next three years.

Creator of Heimlich maneuver, Dr Henry Heimlich, died at 96.
i.The surgeon who created the life-saving Heimlich maneuver for choking victims has died at Christ Hospital in Cincinnati due to heart attack. 
ii.He was 96 year's old.

21st December, 2016

India Achieves 4th rank in Global Wind Power Installed Capacity Index
i.India has ranked 4th in the Global Wind Power Installed Capacity index after China, USA and Germany with cumulative installed wind power generation capacity of 28,279 MW in 2016. 
ii.The Government is aiming to increase the share of clean energy through massive development and deployment of new and renewable energy in India to meet Energy security, Electricity shortages, Energy access and Climate change among others. 

India and Kyrgyzstan signed 6 agreements to boost bilateral cooperation
i.India and Kyrgyzstan have signed 6 agreements/Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) to boost bilateral cooperation on 20 December 2016.
ii.The agreements were signed in New Delhi during the State visit of Kyrgyzstan President Almazbek Atambaye.
1. MoU on cooperation in the field of Tourism
2. Agreement on cooperation in the field of Agriculture and Food Industry 
3. MoU on cooperation in the field of Youth development: The agreement was signed between the Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and the state agency of Youth Affairs, Physical Education and Sports of Kyrgyzstan. 
4. MoU on cooperation between Foreign Service Institute, MEA, New Delhi and Diplomatic Academy of MOFA of Kyrgyzstan.
5. MoU in the field of cooperation in youth exchange between NCC of India and Military Lyceum of Kyrgyz Republic.
6. MoU on cooperation in the field of Broadcasting and exchange of audiovisual programmes: The MoU was signed between Prasar Bharati of India and Public Broadcast Corporation of Kyrgyzstan. 

9th World Confluence of Humanity, Power and Spirituality held in Delhi
i.The ninth edition of World Confluence of Humanity, Power and Spirituality, organised by ASSOCHAM in association with Srei Foundation and Times Foundation, introduced a fresh culture of ‘Spirituality @ Work’ through its brand Sach Bharat, inspiring distinguished industrialists, business leaders, industry captains and noted politicians to imbibe spirituality at their respective work places and lives.
ii.The Confluence was inaugurated in the presence of Hon’ble President of India Shri Pranab Mukherjee, ASSOCHAM President Mr. Sunil Kanoria and Srei Foundation Chairman Dr. Hari Prasad Kanoria.

India Signs Open Skies Agreement with Six Countries at ICAN 2016
i.International Civil Aviation Negotiations (ICAN) – 2016 were held recently in Nassau.
ii.Open Skies agreement allows unlimited number of flights to six metro airports namely Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Bengaluru and Chennai, was signed with six countries namely Jamaica, Guyana, Czech Republic, Finland, Spain and Sri Lanka.

Govt announces Rs 207 crore project for protection of Majuli island
i.Minister of State for Development of North Eastern Region Dr Jitendra Singh has announced to provide 207 crore rupees for protection and development of the world heritage island Majuli located along river Brahmaputra in Assam.
ii. Largest river island of the world, Majuli district, covers an area of around 340 miles. Nearly 1 lakh 60 thousand people reside at the Majuli river island which is one of the prime tourist's destinations of North East.

Chhattisgarh CM dedicates country’s first cashless bazaar to people in Raipur
i. Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh has launched India’s first cashless bazaar in Raipur. 
ii. This ‘Smart’ bazaar consist of nearly Over 900 shops which are providing the facilities of cashless payments using POS, UPI and other digital systems to its customers. 
iii. Chhattisgarh is currently leading in the nation in training its people in digital transactions.

Madras High Court Bans Sharia Courts Functioning in Tamil Nadu.
The Madras High Court has banned unauthorised ‘Sharia’ courts functioning on premises of mosques in Tamil Nadu while hearing a petition from a husband who was allegedly forced to pronounce talaq by one such court in the city.

India gets most FDI from Singapore
India has received the maximum Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflows from Singapore in 2015-16 followed by Mauritius, the US, the Netherlands and Japan, a report by industry chamber PHDCCI and KPMG.India attracted $13.69 billion foreign direct investment from Singapore in that financial year.

Tamil poet-saint Thiruvalluvar Statue gets Place at Haridwar’s Mela Bhawan
The 12-foot-tall stone statue of renowned Tamil poet and philosopher-saint Thiruvalluvar was inaugurated at Mela Bhawan premises in Haridwar, Uttarakhand by Chief minister Harish Rawat.

Huge ‘dead zone’ discovered in Bay of Bengal
The Bay of Bengal hosts a ‘dead zone’ of an estimated 60,000 square kilometres — an area that contains little or no oxygen and supports microbial processes that remove vast amount of nitrogen from the ocean, scientists, including those from India, have found.

Corporation Bank bags award
i. Corporation Bank has bagged the SKOCH silver award for attaining the position of number1 channel partner of LIC of India for the past three financial years, according to a press release by the bank here. 
ii. It said that the bank was also awarded the order of merit under other three categories. CK Gopal, General Manager of the bank, received the award in the presence of Nilesh Sathe, Member of IRDAI, and Sameer Kochhar, Chairman of SKOCH Foundation, in New Delhi recently.

Ukraine Nationalized Nations Largest Private Bank ‘PrivateBank’ 
i. "Privatebank', Ukraine’s largest private bank, is being nationalised to protect the country’s financial system and preserve an essential bailout loan from the International Monetary Fund.
ii.It was running out of money because of the recession in Ukraine and questionable loans, the central bank said 97 percent of its corporate loans had been made to companies linked to its shareholders.

Healthy Ministry wins gold in the Web Ratna Category
i.The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare lead by Jagat Prakash Nadda has won gold in the Web Ratna category in the Digital India awards 2016. 
ii.Jitendra Arora, Director, e-Governance, at the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare received the award from the Union Minister of Electronics and Information Technology and Law & Justice, Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad.

Deepak Agarwal appointed Noida CEO Authority 
i.The Uttar Pradesh government has designated Deepak Agarwal, CEO of Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority (GNIDA), as the CEO of Noida Authority on 21st December 2016. 
ii.Deepak Agarwal will replace P K Agarwal, who was officiating as the CEO of Noida Authority.

China commissions its 1st 7-tonne civil helicopter
i. China commissioned its first seven-tonne helicopter.
ii. AC352 civil helicopter can be used for operations like search and rescue and law enforcement, marking a new advancement in its aviation industry.

Flock launches world’s first chat operating system
i. A free instant messaging service for work and business environments, Flock has launched world’s first chat operating system”FlockOS” by Bhavin Turakhia, Flock CEO.
ii. Flockos Developers can build apps by using Flock OS that provided a tightly integrated experience by using widgets. This OS provides setup slash commands, providing an additional option for users to interact with the app.

India's boxing fed gets permanent membership in world body
i.The International Boxing Association has unanimously voted to induct the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) as one of its permanent members. 
ii.India was provisionally suspended in December 2012 for “possible manipulation” in the erstwhile Indian Amateur Boxing Federation’s elections. AIBA's chief also congratulated the BFI for organising and conducting the Nationals.

Veteran Malayalam Actor Jagannatha Varma Passes Away at 77.
i.Veteran character actor Jagannatha Varma passed away. He was suffering from age-related illness and was in the hospital for the past few days.
ii.The 77-year-old had acted in close to 200 films and two dozen TV serials in a career spanning close to four decades.

22nd December, 2016

Delhi Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung resigns
i.Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung has submitted his resignation to the Government of India. 
ii.The tenure of Jung, who took the charge of the office on July 9, 2013, was scheduled to end in 2018. 
iii. According to a statement released by his office, Jung, who was the 13th Vice-Chancellor of the Jamia Millia Islamia university, would be returning to academics.

Sahitya Akademi Award: 2016 
i. Mumbai-based writer Jerry Pinto, Tamil author Vannadhasan, Hindi writer Nasira Sharma are among 24 others declared the winners of the Sahitya Akademi awards 2016. 
ii. Sharma’s Hindi novel Paarijat, Pinto’s Em and the Big Hoom and Vannadhasan’s Oru Sru Isai won them the literary honour. 
iii. Among the winners are eight book of poetry, seven books of short stories, five novels, two on criticism, one of essays and one play. 
iv. The books were chosen on the basis of recommendations made by a jury of three in the languages concerned and approved by its executive board. 

Girija Vaidyanathan appointed Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu
i. Girija Vaidyanathan, Additional Chief Secretary and Commissioner of Land Administration, has been appointed Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu in place of P. Rama Mohana Rao. 
ii. Ms.Vaidyanathan will also hold full additional charge of Vigilance Commissioner and Commissioner for Administrative Reforms.

Cabinet Approves Creation of Indian Enterprise Development Service (IEDS)
i. The Government of India has approved cadre review and formation of the Indian Enterprise Development Service (IEDS) in the Office of the Development Commissioner, Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises.
ii. The creation of the new cadre and change in structure will not only strengthen the organisation, but will help achieve the vision of Startup India, Stand-up India and Make in India.

Ministry of Minority affairs Launches website for Haj Pilgrims
i. Minister for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi launched the trilingual website relating to Haj Matters.
ii. The website is in Hindi, Urdu and English languages.

Gujarat govt announces Aerospace and Defence Policy-2016
i. Gujarat government has announced Aerospace and Defence Policy-2016 to attract investment into fields of aerospace and defence design, development and manufacturing in the state. 
ii. Under the policy, investors will be entitled to get 100 % reimbursement on stamp duty and registration charges paid for purchase, lease or mortgage of land meant for setting up the facility in the areas of Aerospace and Defence.

India Surpasses United Kingdom to become Fifth-Largest Economy
i. As per the report published in Forbes magazine, India has overtaken the United Kingdom in terms of the size of the economy, first time in 150 years. 
ii. With this major shift in world economy, India has now become the fifth largest country in terms of the size of the economy after the United States, China, Japan and Germany. 

RBI slaps fine on 5 foreign banks for violating FEMA rules
i. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has imposed the penalty on five foreign banks, including Deutsche Bank and Standard Chartered Bank, for violation of its instructions on reporting requirements of the FEMA on 21st December 2016. 
ii. The three other banks are: Bank of America, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi and The Royal Bank of Scotland.
iii. They have been fined for violation of its instructions on reporting requirements of the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 (FEMA). 

Bank of Baroda announces support for FIFA Under-17 World Cup India 2017, 1st Indian company to do so
i. With over 10 months to go for the launch of FIFA Under-17 World Cup India 2017, the Bank of Baroda has become the first Indian company to sign up as a national supporter. 
ii. The first-ever FIFA event in India, scheduled to kick start in October 2017 will see 
participation from 24 countries and matches will be played at six different venues.
iii. While FIFA already has international sponsors for all events, including Coca-Cola, Adidas, and Wanda, BOB is the first Indian supporter.

China inks deal with BRICS bank approving 525 mn yuan loan
i. China has inked an agreement with the New development bank (NDB) set up by the BRICS approving a 525 million yuan loan for a solar power project in the country. 
ii. The new lender announced a 525 million yuan loan for the Shanghai Lingang Distributed Solar Power Project. 
iii. This is the Bank’s first project in China, a solar photovoltaic power plant with total capacity of 100 MW to be built in Lingang Industrial Area of Shanghai.

Japan successfully launches solid fuel rocket
i. Japan's space agency has announced successfully launched a 26-metre-long rocket named Epsilon-2, which put a satellite that helps study radiation belts in orbit.
ii. Epsilon-2 is part of a new generation of solid propellant rockets which can reduce launch costs up to one-third. 
iii. Reduction in cost can allow countries to put more communication and weather satellites in space.

Government of Iran Unveils Bill of Right.
i. Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani has unveiled a landmark Bill of rights guaranteeing freedom of speech, protest, fair trials and privacy. 
ii. Although many of the rights are already enshrined in Iran’s constitution written after the 1979 Islamic revolution, Rouhani said it offered the first clear list of principles that could be used to check the performance of state institutions.

Priyanka 1st Indian to be made Pantene's global ambassador
i. Actress Priyanka Chopra has become the first Indian to be appointed as the global ambassador of the hair care brand 'Pantene calling the brand a "favourite around the world.

Hrithik launches book series for visually impaired children
i. Actor Hrithik Roashan has launched a children's book series 'Tactabet', written in Braille format, which is being published for visually impaired people.
ii. Available in both Hindi and English, the book series is on the alphabets. 

Arjun Bhati wins in Kids Golf World Championship
i. A 12-year-old Arjun Bhati has outshined India in the Kids Golf World Championship 2016 in Malaysia defeating South Africa's Methu Denish to secure the first position.
ii. In a competition in which 21 countries had participated, Arjun secured the top shot scoring two extra shots.

India squad for 2nd T20 World Cup for Blind 2017 announced
i. The Cricket Association of India has organised  a 17-member Indian team for the upcoming second T20 cricket World cup for the visually challenged. 
ii. The World Cup will be held from January 28, 2017, till February 12, 2017, and the final will be played in Bengaluru. 
iii. 9 players have also been named as reserves for the tournament.

23rd December, 2016

PM Modi features on Government of India calendar for 2017
i.Prime Minister Narendra Modi has featured on the Government of India 2017 calendar. 
ii.The calendar features candid pictures, with each month representing the issues that Modi has worked for. 
iii.The photos depict the Prime Minister's participation in campaigns including Swachh Bharat, Sashakt Nari, Sashakt Bharat  and MSME: India's economic backbone.

ICC Awards 2016
i.Ravichandran Ashwin has won both the ICC Cricketer of the Year and the ICC Test cricketer of the Year award after he was named as the only Indian in ICC’s Test Team of the Year. 
ii.Virat Kohli was named the captain of the ICC ODI Team of the Year. 
iii.Misbah-Ul-Haq won the ICC Spirit of Cricket Award at the 2016 ICC Awards as he became the first Pakistan player to win the award. 

Union Minister of State for Ayush Yesso Naik inaugurates NE Institute of Ayurveda and Homeopathy
i.Union Minister of State for Ayush Shripad Yesso Naik has inaugurated the North Eastern Institute of Ayurveda and Homeopathy (NEIAH).
ii.The institute's primary aim is to produce quality human resource in the area of Ayush, particularly in Ayurveda and homoeopathy along with yoga.

Delhi named India's most well-read city of 2016 by Amazon
i.Delhi has emerged as the country's most well-read city in the fourth consecutive year with Bengaluru and Mumbai taking the second and third spot, according to Annual Reading Trends Report 2016 by Amazon. 
ii.For the first time, Karnal, Vadodara and Patna made it to the top 20 cities, having bought more books than cities like Coimbatore, Visakhapatnam and Lucknow this year.

Hrithik Roshan becomes highest advance taxpaying actor
i.Hrithik Roshan has become the highest advance taxpaying actor. 
ii. He has paid an advance tax of Rs 80 crore till December 15, 2016, compared to Rs 50 crore last year.
iii. After Hrithik, it is Aamir Khan, who has paid Rs. 74 crore.  
iv. Ranbir Kapoor, who paid Rs 37 crore as advance tax till December is at 3rd position.

Salman Khan has been ranked No. 1 on the fifth Forbes India Celebrity 100 List. 
i.Salman, 50 has earned a revenue of Rs 270.33 crore. 
ii.Ranked second on the list, Shah Rukh Khan has an estimated earnings of Rs 221.75 crore. 
iii.The Forbes' ranking is based on two parameters: estimates of entertainment-related earnings and estimates of fame. 

China launches satellite to monitor global CO2 emissions
i.China has launched atmospheric CO2-monitoring TanSat satellite on 22nd December 2016, in an effort to curb and monitor greenhouse gas emissions. 
ii.The 635-kg satellite will measure global carbon dioxide levels every 16 days over the next three years and help policy makers and scientists gather independent climate change data. 
iii.Notably, China is the world's largest emitter of CO2.

World's first solar road opens in France
i.The world's first solar road made with 30,000 square feet of solar panels has been opened in the French village of Normandy.
ii. The one-kilometre long road took five years and cost $5.2 million to develop. 
iii.It will be used for a two-year test period to check if it can generate enough energy to power street lighting in the village.

Argentina win FIFA Team of the Year title
i.FIFA has released the final rankings of 2016, with Argentina reclaiming the team of the year title from Belgium, finishing with 1634 points to top FIFA’s rankings.  
ii.As for India, the Blue Tigers have also climbed a staggering 31 places from last year, finishing the 
year ranked 135, their best climb up the table in history.

India wins bronze at women's U18 Hockey Asia Cup
i.India has defeated South Korea 3-0 to secure the bronze medal at the 4th Women's U18 Asia Cup 2016 hockey tournament in Bangkok on 22 December 2016. 
ii.After the win, Hockey India announced cash rewards of Rs.1 lakh for each player. 
iii.It also announced Rs.50000 for each member of the support staff. 

Jeje wins best footballer of the year award by AIFF
i.Indian fotballer Jeje Lalpekhlua has named 2016's All India Football Federation (AIFF) Player of the Year, an award given to the best footballer in the country.  
ii.The 25-year-old who hails from Mizoram will be awarded a prize of 2.5 lakh.

24th December, 2016

Global Wage Report shows India to be among the worst levels of gender wage disparity
i. According to Global Wage Report, India has among the worst levels of gender wage disparity.
ii.Men earning more than women in similar jobs with the gap exceeding 30%, the Global Wage Report 2016-17 released by the International Labour Organisation (ILO).

Important Union Cabinet Approval's: 22 December 2016
1. Union Cabinet Approves Ordinance to amend Payment of Wages Act, 1936
The Centre approved a draft ordinance on December 21, 2016, to empower states and enable industries to pay wages by cheque or by direct credit into bank accounts of workers earning up to Rs. 18,000 a month, without taking their explicit consent.
2. CCEA approves doubling of Rajpura-Bhatinda railway line
The cabinet committee on economic affairs (CCEA) gave its approval for doubling of Rajpura-Bhatinda railway line at an estimated cost of Rs. 1,251.25 crore.
3. Union Cabinet approves sale of part of HAL’s surplus, vacant land
The Union Cabinet on December 21, approved the sale of part of surplus and vacant land of 87.70 acres at Pimpri in Pune, Maharashtra to meet Rs. 821.17 crore net liabilities of Hindustan Antibiotics Ltd (HAL).
4. Cabinet To Launch toll-free number 10588 for pregnant women
The union government will soon set up a toll-free number 10588 to provide relevant information and guidance directly to the pregnant women.

Acclaimed Bengali poet Shankha Ghosh to get 2016 Jnanpith Award
i.Bengali poet and literary critic Shankha Ghosh will get the Jnanpith Award for 2016.
ii. The award is given for exceptional contribution in the field of literature. 
iii.The award was constituted way back in 1965 and He is the sixth Bengali to get this prestigious award.

The External Affairs Ministry's launches Twitter Seva
i.The External Affairs Ministry's have launched a new service called Twitter Seva that will enable timely, transparent and large-scale response to citizens' tweets in real time. 
ii.The Twitter Seva service will be supported by 198 Twitter accounts of Indian missions abroad and 29 regional passport offices. 

'Coal Mitra' portal launched to facilitate flexibility in utilization of domestic coal 
i.Power Minister Piyush Goyal has launched 'Coal Mitra' Web Portal to facilitate Flexibility in Utilization of Domestic Coal. 
ii.With this Government has also allowed Coal Swapping between PSUs and the Private Sector. 
iii.This move is aimed at optimum utilisation by private as well as public power companies of the coal. 
iv.The portal will enhance transparency in coal swapping and help reduce operational and logistic costs, bringing tariffs down.

Tata Steel to acquire 100% equity in Brahmani River Pellets,Odisha 
i.Tata Steel has signed an agreement to acquire 100% equity in Odisha-based Brahmani River Pellets (BRPL) for Rs 900 crore.
ii. The deal which will be financed through the company’s internal cash flows is tipped to help Tata Steel as it ramps up capacity at its new plant at Kalinganagar. 

Textile Ministry to launch Bunkar Mitra-Handloom Helpline Centre for weavers
i.The Ministry of Textiles has decided to establish a “Bunkar Mitra-Handloom Helpline Centre” where professional queries of weavers will be answered by the experts in the field. 
ii.This helpline will function from 10.00 a.m to 6 p.m. and initially it will be provided 
in 7 languages viz., Hindi, English, and 5 other regional languages (Telugu, Tamil, Kannada Bengali & Assamese).

Odisha Government launches Biju Sishu Surakshya Yojana for HIV+ orphan children
i.Naveen Patnaik launches Biju Sishu Surakshya Yojana to nurture orphan kids.
ii.The state government launched the Biju Sishu Surakshya Yojana, a scheme to nurture the orphan and HIV-infected children residing in different child care institutions and orphanages.

ICICI Bank Launches EazyPay app for Merchants
i.ICICI Bank has now launched a payments collection app for offline merchants and retailers called Eazypay which will allow customers to pay via UPI, cards, net banking and the bank’s Pockets wallet app. 
ii.Note that this is an app only for ICICI Bank customers who have a current account with the bank and will not allow other bank account holders to register on the app.

Kisan Diwas is observed every year on 23 December across India 
i. Kisan Diwas is observed every year on 23 December across India Since 2001 to celebrate the birth anniversary of the fifth prime minister and kisan leader,Ch. Charan Singh.
ii. Kisan Diwan is also known as Farmers Day or Charan Singh Jayanti 

Nepal to hold military exercise with China
i.Nepal has announced to hold its first ever joint military exercise with China on February 10, 2017 to begin a new level of bilateral military engagement with China.
ii.The focus of the military exercise, named Pratikar-1, will be on training Nepali forces in dealing 
with hostage scenarios involving international terror groups.

Govt okays Rs 7,000-cr defence projects
i.The Defence Acquisition Council okayed defence requirements worth approximately Rs 7,000 crore. 
ii.These include purchasing six modern surveillance aircraft for the Indian Coast Guard. 
iii.The DAC also gave its go-ahead to purchase one more C-17 Globemaster Mk-III aircraft from the US.

Nusli Wadia voted out of Tata Chemicals
i.Shareholders of Tata Chemicals have voted out Nusli Wadia as an independent director of the company with 75.67 % votes going in favour of a resolution moved by Tata Sons to remove him. 
ii.According to a regulatory filing by Tata Chemicals, out of the total of 25.48 crore shares of the company, 14.91 crore shares were voted.
iii. Out of this, 11.28 crore were in favour of the resolution to remove him.

France is the first to use drones for its national mail service
France’s airspace regulator, General Directorate for Civil Aviation, has approved the plan to launch drone delivery program, making France the world’s first national postal service to use drones regularly.

APIS India ropes in badminton sensation PV Sindhu as its brand ambassador 
APIS India a leading producer, distributor and exporter of honey under APIS Himalaya brand, has roped in Indian badminton champion and Rio Olympics silver medalist PV Sindhu as its brand ambassador. 

India beat Sri Lanka in final, clinch Asia Cup under-19 title
i.India, coached by Rahul Dravid, continued their dominance in the Asia Cup as they clinched the U-19 title by defeating Sri Lanka in the final at the R Premadasa stadium in Colombo.
ii. This was India’s second win in the Asia Cup U-19 tournament, having won the title in 2013/14 by defeating Pakistan by 40 runs and sharing the trophy in the first edition held in Malaysia in 2012/13.

Shiva Keshavan grabs gold at Asian Luge Championship
i.India’s Seasoned Winter Olympian Shiva Keshavan clinched a gold medal at the Asian Luge Championship on 23rd December. 
ii.Keshavan finished the 2 heat race with a time of 1 minute, 39.962 seconds and top speed of 130.4 km/h. 
iii.Japan's Tanaka Shohei won silver while Chinese Taipei's Lien Te-An claimed bronze. 
iv.Earlier this year, Shiva was forced to withdraw from the 2016 World Championships due to lack of funds.

Pakistan's first Sikh cricketer Mohinder Pal Singh to join national cricket academy
i.Pakistan cricket has seen Christians and Hindus represent the country at home and abroad, but for the first time a Sikh has secured a place in the National Cricket Academy.
ii.Mohinder Pal Singh, who hails from Nankana Sahib (Lahore), is among the list of top 30 emerging cricketers in the country.


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