- Gauhati University gears up for inter-varsity youth festival
- After a gap of 25 years, Gauhati University (GU) is all geared up to host Pragjyoti Mahotsava — the 33rd East Zone Inter University Youth Festival 2017-18 — from January 5 to January 9.
- About 25-30 universities from eastern India are expected to participate in the festival in 26 different music, cultural, literary and fine arts’ competitions with approximately 800 participants.
- Nepal bans solo climbing on Mount Everest
- Nepal has banned solo climbers from scaling its mountains, including Mount Everest, in an attempt to reduce accidents and make mountaineering safer.
- The new safety regulations also prohibit double amputee and blind climbers from attempting to reach the summit of the world’s highest peak.
- Nearly 300 people have died on Mount Everest since the first ascent to the peak was made in 1953.
- Pakistan to set up $1.51 billion hydropower project in PoK
- Pakistan has decided to set up a new hydropower project of over 700 megawatts in PoK through foreign financing at an estimated cost of USD 1.51 billion by 2022.
- The Azad Pattan Hydropower Project (APHP) is a run of river scheme located on Jhelum River in the Sudhanoti district of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and about 90 kilometres from Islamabad.
- The project would be completed by 2022 for which the authorities have sought an import tariff at Rs 8.05 per kilowatts.
- Ripple becomes second-largest crypto currency by market cap
- Ripple surged nearly 56 percent to an all-time high, surpassing ethereum as the second-largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization.
- Officially called XRP, ripple climbed 55.9 percent to a record high of $2.23, according to Coin Market Cap.
- The digital currency had a market cap of $86.3 billion, surpassing ethereum’s $73 billion.
· China Launches World’s Largest Human Genome Research Project
- The world’s largest human genome research project of 100,000 people was launched by China to document their genetic makeup for a study that aims to help generate the precision medicines of the future.
- It is the country’s first large project detecting the genetic links between health and sickness and will involve 100,000 people from different ethnic backgrounds and regions.
- The project includes four stages – collecting, sequencing gene samples, gathering the data and sharing the findings.
- Odisha police to go digital from January 1, 2018
- The Odisha police is all set to go digital from January 1, 2018 with computerisation of police station work under the Criminal Tracking and Networking System (CCTNS).
- The project is being implemented under the national e-governance initiative at a cost of Rs 61 crore.
- Odisha Director General of Police (DGP) R P Sharma, after reviewing the status of the CCTNS project, said out of 612 police stations across the state, 589 police stations have been equipped with the necessary hardware and software for successful implementation of the project.
- Centre releases Rs 24,500 crore to compensate states post GST
- The revenue loss to states on account of GST implementation was Rs 24,500 crore between July-October and the Centre has released compensation to make up for it, Parliament was informed.
- As per the details of GST compensation released to states as on November 30, Karnataka got maximum compensation from the Centre at Rs 3,271 crore, followed by Gujarat (Rs 2,282 crore) and Punjab (Rs 2,098 crore).
- The other states that required hefty compensation include Rajasthan (Rs 1,911 crore), Bihar (Rs 1,746 crore), Uttar Pradesh (Rs 1,520 crore), West Bengal (Rs 1,008 crore) and Odisha (Rs 1,020 crore).
- Arunachal Pradesh declared Open Defecation Free
- Arunachal Pradesh has been emerged as the second state in the Northeast, after Sikkim, to be declared Open Defecation Free.
- The three remaining districts – Upper Subansiri, Siang and Changlang — were declared Open Defecation Free (ODF) officially.
- Arunachal has 21 districts and the state attained the feat much before the national deadline of October 2, 2019.
- Kolkata cops ban public display of weapons
- The Kolkata police has issued a notification banning public display of weapons in the city, to be effective from January 2, 2018, to January 1, 2019.
- The notification issued by the Commissioner of Police, Rajeev Kumar prohibits “carrying of swords, spears, bludgeons, or other offensive weapons in any public place in the ‘Town of Calcutta’ or in the suburbs of the ‘Town of Calcutta’.”
- Centre approves Rs 4,066 cr for internet in all panchayats
- The government has approved Rs 4,066 crore for providing internet connectivity to people in all gram panchayats under BharatNet project, Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha informed the Parliament.
- “Rs 4,066 crore has been approved for providing last-mile connectivity, through Wi-Fi or any other suitable broadband technology, at all the Gram Panchayats (approximately 2,50,000) in the country,” Sinha said in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha.
- The government is rolling BharatNet project to provide high-speed broadband connectivity at gram panchayat (GP) levels.
- The government plans to connect all GPs with high-speed broadband by March 2019.
· Lok Sabha Passes Insolvency And Bankruptcy Code Amendment Bill
- The Lok Sabha passed the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Bill, 2017, which disqualifies wilful defaulters and existing promoters from bidding for stressed assets of companies undergoing insolvency proceedings.
- The high levels of NPA at present are due to window dressing and due to evergreening of loans.
- This situation has arisen because loans were restructured and not classified as NPAs.
- The problems were shoved under the carpet and these came to light because of the asset quality review initiated by RBI in 2015.
- Importantly, the bill replaces an ordinance that was brought in last month seeking to bar wilful defaulters, defaulters whose dues had been classified as non-performing assets (NPAs) for more than a year and all related entities of these firms from participating in the resolution process.
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