- World Bank grants $ 120 million additional finance approval for disaster recovery
- In what may be viewed as a major development, the State Government has received $ 120 million additional finance approval from the World Bank for the Disaster Recovery Project. A memorandum of understanding to this effect was signed between Uttarakhand Government and World Bank in the national capital.
- With this extra funding, mainly training facilities of the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) and construction of battalion headquarters at Jolly Grant, construction of ultra-modern Uttarakhand State Disaster Management Authority building, construction of 64 bridges to improve connectivity in Uttarakhand, slope security work on 15 highly sensitive land slide zones and safety work at five places on river banks will be done. All these works are proposed to be completed in the next three years.
- Notably, after the 2013 disaster in Uttarakhand, the Disaster Management had received assistance of $ 250 million for UDRP from the World Bank and $ 200 million assistance from the Asian Development Bank from Uttarakhand Emergency Assistance Project (UEAP). UEAP has been successfully completed in October 2017 and the UDRP is likely to be completed by June 2019.
· Global Gender Gap Report 2018: Iceland tops; India ranks 108th
- This year, the Gender Gap Index as released by World Economic Forum (WEF), was topped by Iceland with a score of858, holding the top spot in the index for the 10th consecutiveyear.
- Norway ranked at 2nd, Sweden at 3rd, and Finland at 4th.
- India was ranked 108th in the Global Gender Gap Index 2018, same as it was ranked in 2017.
- Among other South Asian countries, India fetched fourth place with top 3 being Bangladesh (48th), Sri Lanka (100th) and Nepal (105th).
- China launched its First Satellite for Space-based Broadband Services
- China has launched its first communication satellite on 22nd December 2018 to offer broadband internet services to users worldwide.
- The communication satellite was launched using a Long March 11 carrier rocket which took off from the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Centre in north-western China. It is CASIC’s (China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation) first satellite launch under China’s Hongyun project. Changing the way of learning… Daily Current Affairs Capsule 24th December 2018.
- The satellite aims to rival Google and other companies which have similar plans for providing Internet services worldwide.
- China started the Hongyun project in September 2016. Under this project, China plans to give broadband internet connectivity to users all over the world by building a space-based communications network.
- It is to be noted that CASIC is the main contractor for Chinese space programs and a state-owned company.
- ‘Shiksha Setu’ Mobile App launched by Haryana Government
- Haryana Government has launched a mobile app named as ‘Shiksha Setu’ with an aim to help the students of the state.
- The ‘Shikhsa Setu’ App will help in bringing transparency in the Education Department and in the administration of colleges in the state.
- The connectivity between students’ parents, teachers and administration will be improved through this mobile application.
- As per the 2011 Census, Haryana has 76.64% literacy rate, having Male literacy rate of 85.4% and the literacy rate of females stands at 66.8%.
- GSLV-F11 successfully launches GSAT-7A
- Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-F11) successfully launched the communication satellite GSAT-7A from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) in Sriharikota.
- GSAT-7A is the heaviest satellite being launched by GSLV with an indigenously developed cryogenic stage.
- GSLV is ISRO’s fourth generation launch vehicle with three stages
- GSAT-7A is the 39th Indian communication satellite of ISRO to provide services to the users in Ku-band over the Indian region. Most of the functional requirements of the communication payloads and the other systems have been derived from ISRO’s earlier geostationary INSAT/GSAT satellites.
· India’s largest Cancer hospital ‘National Cancer Institute’ opened in Haryana
- The National Cancer Institute (NCI) at Haryana’s Jhajjar area, opened its OPD (out-patient department) services around five years after its foundation stone was laid by the then prime minister Manmohan Singhin 2014. The hospital is expected to be fully operational by December 2020.
- The 710-bed hospital is being built at a cost of Rs 2, 035 crore.
- NCI is being headed by Dr G K Rath who is also the chief of Institute Rotary Cancer hospital at AIIMS.
- Budgetary allocation for interest-free edu loans to be hiked: Javadekar
- The Union government will increase its annual allocation for interest-free loans to students and digitalise over 15 lakh classrooms as part of its resolve to ensure quality education in the country, said Union Minister Prakash Javadekar
- The ‘digital classes’ would improve the quality of education and bring about a radical change, said the minister.
- The Centre aims at launching ‘Operation Digital Board’ in all schools in five years, said an official release earlier, adding the venture would “ensure quality, equity, accessibility and accountability in education by pro-active action and plan”.