The Daily Brief – 8th January 2019


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  1. Rail Kumbh Seva Mobile App has been launched by the North Central Railway (NCR) to help the devotees arriving in Allahabad for the Kumbh Mela. The app will assist to navigate through the city and the mela grounds. The app will provide a link to the user to buy both unreserved and reserved train tickets. The Maha Kumbh Mela is celebrated at Prayag after 144 years (i.e. after 12 ‘Purna Kumbh Melas’).
  2. The Peoples Republic of China has passed a new law to regulate Islam and make it more compatible with socialism by “Sinicizing Islam”. China has around 20 million Muslims and Islam is one of the five officially recognised religions in atheist China. China has detained more than 1 million Muslim Uyghurs at the indoctrination camps of Xinjiang. The main purpose of China’s five-year plan to sinicise Islam is to seek Islam governance that tallies with Chinese practice, and it is not only limited to Islam.
  3. The Central Statistics Office (CSO) under the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation has released the first advance estimates of National Income for 2018-19. India’s per capita income in real terms (at 2011-12 prices) during 2018-19 is likely to attain a level of Rs 91,921 as compared to Rs 86,668 for the year 2017-18. The per capita income would grow at a rate of 6.1 per cent.
  4. The Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare is implementing the scheme of Rashtriya Gokul Mission to conserve and develop indigenous breeds in a focused and scientific manner. Initiative under it is establishment of integrated cattle development centres ‘Gokul Grams’ to develop indigenous breeds. Rashtriya Gokul Mission aims to enhance the productivity of the indigenous breeds of India through professional farm management and superior nutrition.
  5. The Ministry of Human Resource Development has launched 70-Point Grading Index to assess the quality of school education in the states. The 70-Point Grading Index will assess areas of deficiency in each state’s school education system so that targeted interventions can be made at every level from pedagogy to teacher training. The index will assess states on a 1,000 point grading system with 10-20 points per parameter.
  6. A committee headed by former Union tourism secretary M.P. Bezbaruah has been setup to review the implementation of clause 6 of the Assam Accord. Clause 6 of the Assam Accord provides for Constitutional, legislative and administrative safeguards to protect preserve and promote the cultural, social, linguistic identity and heritage of the Assamese people. The committee will examine the effectiveness of actions since 1985 to implement the clause 6 of the Assam Accord.

    Kevin Sweeney
  7. Kevin Sweeney, the chief of staff of the US Department of Defence, has announced his resignation from the post. Explaining his decision, Rear Admiral Sweeney said that “the time is right to return to the private sector”. The move comes a month after the Defence Secretary James Mattis announced his departure in December 2018. Defense Secretary Chief of Staff Kevin Sweeney served in this role since January 2017.
  8. The Union Women and Child Development Minister, Maneka Gandhi conferred National Awards to 97 Anganwadi Workers in New Delhi on January 7, 2018 for exceptional achievements for the year 2017-18. The government had formulated the scheme in 2000-2001 to award Anganwadi Workers at the National and State Levels.
  9. Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan and Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates’ Armed Forces Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan have agreed to work jointly for peace and stability in Afghanistan. The two leaders held talks on January 6, 2018 on bilateral matters and strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and also expressed their resolve to work closely to root out the scourge.
  10. The 76th Annual Golden Globe Awards were announced on January 7, 2019 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, the United States of America. These annual awards honour the best in Motion Pictures and Television for the year 2018. While Green Book finished with three awards-the maximum for the evening, Bohemian Rhapsody- the Queen biopic and Alfonso Cuaron’s Roma won two each. ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ won the Best Motion Picture (Drama).

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Today’s Quiz

1. Where is the Kumbh Mela organised every year?

2. Which country has passed a new law to regulate Islam and make it more compatible with socialism by “Sinicizing Islam?

3. What was the India’s per capita income for the year 2017-18?

4. What is the Grading Index launched to assess the quality of school education in the states?

5. Who is the head of the committee that has been set up to review the implementation of clause 6 of the Assam Accord?

6. Who was the chief of staff of the US Department of Defence who announced his resignation from the post recently?

7. With which of the following countries, Pakistan agreed to work jointly for peace and stability in Afghanistan?

8. What was the edition of the Annual Golden Globe Awards 2019?


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