The Daily Brief – 3rd December 2016


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  • The Centre has approved the inclusion of 15 new castes and the modification in 13 other castes in the central list of Other Backward Classes (OBCs). This will make the castes eligible for benefit under the existing welfare schemes and scholarships for the OBCs that are being administered by the Central Government.
  • India & Qatar signed four agreements on visas, cyberspace, and investments following delegation-level talks led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Qatari counterpart Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani.
  • Dhasai village in Maharashtra has become India’s first cashless village. This comes in the light of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s demonetization move. Point of Sale (POS) machines were provided to around 100 traders by an NGO in collaboration with Bank of Baroda and villagers were informed about various features of the machines.
  • The National Green Tribunal banned the use of disposable plastic in Delhi and the National Capital Region with effect from January 1, 2017. The plastic is mostly used at grocery shops and for items like plastic tea cup among others. The NGT also directed the public authorities to take fast steps for reduction and utilization of dumped wastes.
  • The Animal Husbandry Department launched an ambulance service for pets and small animals in Chandigarh. The ambulance which is equipped with first aid and emergency medication will transport sick and injured animals to nearby Government Veterinary Hospitals. The nominal fare of ₹300 will be charged for a to and fro trip.
  • India will train the Qatari police for handling the security during the FIFA World Cup in the nation, scheduled to be held in 2022.
  • Indian representative Srinidhi Shetty has been crowned Miss Supranational 2016, an international beauty pageant. This marks the second time that India has won the pageant following the win by Asha Bhat in 2014. Shetty qualified for the competition after becoming the first runner-up at the Miss India Universe pageant earlier this year, where she won the title ‘Miss Diva Supranational’.
  • Sanjeev Sonawane, a visually impaired educationalist who has developed educational programmes for hundreds of young blind people, was awarded the Helen Keller Award 2016 in the “role model supporter of increased employment opportunities for disabled persons” category. He is the head of education and extension department at the Savitribai Phule Pune University.
  • A 16-year old Indian girl based in the UAE has won this year’s International Children’s Peace Prize for her fight for climate justice and combating environment degradation.
    Kehkashan Basu

    was presented the award by Nobel Peace laureate Muhammad Yunus at The Hague. At the age of 12, Kehkashan founded her organization Green Hope, which now has operations in over 10 countries.

  • Mayors of four of world’s biggest cities, Paris, Madrid, Athens and Mexico City, have decided to ban diesels vehicles from their cities by 2025 to tackle air pollution. Green Campaigners welcomed the announcement saying it showed that it was possible to clean up big cities.
  • Jessica Cox holds the Guinness World Record for being the first woman to fly an airplane with her feet. The 33-year old has also been recognized for being the first armless person in the world to have obtained a pilot’s license. Cox flew an ‘Europe’ plane while manning the controls with one foot and guiding the steering column with the other.
  • Mumbai-based lawyer Afroz Shah has been named as one of the winners of the 2016 Champions of the Earth award from the United Nations for leading the clean-up of the city’s Versova beach. The volunteers have collected over 4,000 tons of trash from the beach so far. Shah will receive the award under the ‘Inspiration and Action’ category.
  • The US Congress is about to pass a legislation that will declare India a “major defence partner” and lock in the status for all future governments until repealed. It will allow fast tracking sale and transfer of sensitive defence technology to India. The US Congress has already approved the final legislation, which could face last minute objections.
  • Less than a week after winning the 1st in Formula One World Championship, Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg announced his retirement from Formula One with immediate effect. Rosberg’s father Keke Rosberg had won the championship in 1982, and Nico Rosberg’s F1 championship made him only the second son of a champion to take the title since 1950.
  • The All-India Football Federation won the Asian Football Council’s Developing Member Association of the Year Award in Abu Dhabi. The award is given on the basis of organization of courses, seminars and competitions, grassroots, youth development and women’s programmes and special projects. In 2014, AIFF had earlier won the AFC President’s Recognition Award for grassroots football.
  • South African surgeon Christiaan Barnard conducted the first ever human heart transplant surgery on December 3, 1967. 53-year old Lewis Washkansky was transplanted with Denise Darvall’s heart, a 25 year old woman who was fatally injured in a car accident. Washkanky’s new heart functioned normally until he died of double pneumonia 18 days after the surgery.
  • The United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities has been observed annually on December 3 worldwide since 1992. The observance of the day aims to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity and rights of persons with disabilities. The theme for this year is to achieve the 17 sustainable development goals.

    Today’s Quiz

    1. Which is India’s first cashless village?

    2. ______ has banned the use of disposable plastic in Delhi and the National Capital Region with effect from January 1 2017.

    3. Who has been awarded the Helen Keller Award 2016 in the “role model supporter of increased employment opportunities for disabled persons” category?

    4. Who won this year’s International Children’s Peace Prize?

    5. Name the surgeon who conducted the first ever human heart transplant over 50 year ago on 3rd December, 1967.


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