Current Affairs of December Month

Current Affairs of December Month is collection of Daily Current Affairs in PDF format. You can download and print it according to your convenient. It is divided in different section – Appointments, Awards, Conference, Economy, Scheme, Books and Authors, Sports….

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Appointment and Resignation

Shaktikanta Das - Modi administration appointed former bureaucrat Shaktikanta Das as the 25th Governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for three years. Mr. Das is former finance secretary and currently a member of the Fifteenth Finance Commission and represents India at the G-20 in a role of a sherpa.
Ashok Gehlot - Ashok Gehlot is likely to be sworn-in as Rajasthan Chief Minister for the third time. While, Sachin Pilot will take oath as the Deputy CM of Rajasthan. The Indian National Congress (INC) emerged as the single largest party in Rajasthan, winning 99 seats on its own. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) trailed behind with 73 seats and others fetched 27 seats. 
Bhupesh Baghel - Chhattisgarh Congress president Bhupesh Baghel will be sworn-in as the chief minister. After his election as leader of the Congress Legislature Party, Mr Baghel has staked claim to form the government. He will replace outgoing Chief Minister Raman Singh.
Kamal Nath - Congress party has chosen Kamal Nath as the chief minister of Madhya Pradesh. He is nine-time MP from Madhya Pradesh's Chhindwara constituency. He will replace outgoing Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
K Chandrasekhar Rao - The President of Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), K Chandrasekhar Rao, who led his party to a massive win in the State Assembly Elections, was sworn-in as the Chief Minister of the state for a second straight term on December 13, 2018.
Zoramthanga - Mizoram Governor Kummanam Rajasekharan invited Mizo National Front (MNF) president Zoramthanga to form the government. Outgoing Congress Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla had submitted his resignation.
Sheikh Hasina - Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina secured her third consecutive term and fourth overall with a landslide victory in the nation’s general elections. Sheikh Hasina’s ruling party Bangladesh Awami League and its allies won 288 of the 299 parliamentary seats contested. The main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), which boycotted the last poll in 2014, won just six seats.
Ranil Wickremesinghe - Ranil Wickremesinghe was sworn in as Sri Lanka's prime minister on 16 December, making a remarkable comeback weeks after being ousted by President Maithripala Sirisena under controversial circumstances.
Dr. Krishnamurthy Subramanian - The government appointed Dr. Krishnamurthy Subramanian as the new Chief Economic Advisor. Dr. Subramanian will have a tenure of three years and fill the position lying vacant since Arvind Subramanian quit in late July. 
Bhanu Pratap Sharma - The government has constituted a seven-member panel to select managing directors of public sector insurance companies. The panel would be headed by Banks Board Bureau (BBB) chairman Bhanu Pratap Sharma.
Sudhir Bhargava - The government has appointed Sudhir Bhargava as Chief Information Commissioner (CIC). He will take charge on January 1. Four new members have also been appointed to the Central Information Commission (CIC), taking its total strength to seven. Four vacancies still remain.
Arundhati Bhattacharya - SWIFT India said it had appointed ex-SBI chief Arundhati Bhattacharya as the new chairman of its board. SWIFT India is a joint venture of top Indian public and private sector banks and SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication). The company was created to deliver high quality domestic financial messaging services to the Indian financial community.
Patrick Shanahan - US President Donald Trump replaced Defence Secretary Jim Mattis with his deputy Patrick Shanahan as acting Pentagon chief. Shanahan will assume charge of Acting Secretary of Defense from 1 January, 2019. Mattis resigned in protest after Trump announced the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria. 
Harsh Vardhan Shringla - India appointed Harsh Vardhan Shringla as the next Ambassador of India to the United States. He will succeed Navtej Sarna. At present, Shringla is serving as Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh.
Riva Ganguly Das - Senior diplomat Riva Ganguly Das was appointed as new High Commissioner to Bangladesh.
Atul Sahai - Atul Sahai has been appointed as the Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) of New India Assurance. The post had been lying vacant since July 2018 after former chairman and managing director G Srinivasan retired.
AS Rajeev - AS Rajeev was appointed as the managing director and chief executive officer of Bank of Maharashtra. Prior to this, he was executive director of Indian Bank.
P V Bharathi - P V Bharathi has been appointed as managing director and chief executive officer of the Corporation Bank. Bharathi is at present Executive Director, Canara Bank. She will take over the charge on or after February 1, 2019.
V K Yadav - Railway Board Chairman Ashwani Lohani retired. General Manager, South Central Railway, V K Yadav has been appointed as the Chairman of Indian Railway.
Pranab Kumar Das - Pranab Kumar Das was appointed as the Chairman of Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) with effect from January 2019.
Sandip Somany - The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) elected Sandip Somany as its President for 2018-19. Uday Shankar joined the chamber as the Vice President.
Rajiv Mehrishi - Rajiv Mehrishi, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India, was elected as the Vice-Chair of United Nations Panel of External Auditors. Currently, the panel is chaired by the Comptroller and Auditor General of the UK, Sir Amyas Morse who also elected for another term.
Brijendra Pal Singh - Government appointed TV producer Brijendra Pal Singh as President of FTII and chairman of its Governing Council. Singh will replace Anupam Kher.
Heather Nauertas - US President Donald Trump nominated State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauertas the US Ambassador to the United Nations. Nauert will replace Nikki Haley, who will be leaving the post by the end of 2018.
Annegret Kramp Karrenbauer - In Germany, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer has been elected leader of   Christian Democratic Union (CDU) during party congress in Hamburg. He will succeed Angela Merkel. 
Pawan Singh - Pawan Singh has become the first Indian to be elected one of seven member's of the Judges Committee of the International Shooting Sports Federation (ISSF).
Christian James Michel - British national Christian James Michel, wanted in the alleged Rs 3,700-crore Agusta Westland chopper deal bribery case, was extradited to India from the United Arab Emirates. Mr. Michel’s role in the purchase of 12 helicopters surfaced in 2012 as a middleman for swinging the deal in favour of AgustaWestland.
Aung San Suu Kyi - The city of Paris will strip Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi of her honorary freedom of the Paris award over her failure to speak out against a crackdown on Rohingya Muslims. She has already been stripped of her honorary Canadian citizenship and her Amnesty International's "Ambassador of Conscience Award".
Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador - Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, has been sworn in as the new Mexican President following his landslide victory in presidential election.
A N Jha - A N Jha, secretary, expenditure, has been appointed as new finance secretary. He will replace Hasmukh Adhia retired.
Raninder Singh - Raninder Singh has become the first Indian to be elected one of the four vice-presidents of the International Shooting Sport Federation. The 51-year-old Raninder also heads the National Rifle Association of India.
Madhavi Divan - The Central government has appointed advocate Madhavi Divan as the Additional Solicitor General (ASG) to represent it in the Supreme Court.
Rajesh Subramaniam - Indian-American Rajesh Subramaniam has been named as the president and chief executive officer of U.S. multinational courier delivery giant FedEx Express. Mr. Subramaniam will assume his new role on January 1, 2019.
Urjit Patel ­- Urjit Patel resigned as the Governor of the Reserve Bank of India with immediate effect, citing personal reasons. Patel’s three-year term was to end in September 2019. 
Upendra Kushwaha - Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (RLSP) Chief Upendra Kushwaha resigned as Union Minister of State in the Ministry of Human Resource Development.  Kushwaha is quitting the BJP-led NDA alliance.
Charles Michel - Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel has resigned amid pressure on his government over his support for the UN global compact on migration. 

Awards and Honours

UN Human Rights Prize - Late human rights activist, Asma Jahangir was awarded with the UN Human Rights Prize 2018, posthumously. Asma Jahangir was announced as one of the four winners of this prestigious prize. Other winners were women's rights activist of Tanzania Rebeca Gyumi; activist for the rights of indigenous Brazilian communities Joenia Wapichana and Ireland's human rights organisation ‘Front Line Defenders’.
Vanessa Ponce de Leon - Mexico's Vanessa Ponce de Leon won the coveted Miss World 2018 crown at a grand event held in the Chinese city, Sanya. Thailand's Nicolene Pichapa Limsnukan was declared the runner-up. Former Miss World Manushi Chillar presented the crown to the new winner.
Miss Universe 2018 - Miss Philippines Catriona Gray was crowned Miss Universe 2018 Title held in Bangkok, Thailand. Outgoing Miss Universe Demi Leigh Nel Peters from South Africa crowned her successor. India was represented by 22-year-old Nehal Chudasama.
Time’s Person of the Year - Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, who was murdered in October at his country's Istanbul consulate, has been named Time magazine's "Person of the Year" alongside several other journalists. The magazine has also honoured Philippine journalist Maria Ressa, Reuters reporters Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo -- currently imprisoned in Myanmar among others. 
Arunima Sinha - The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi handed over the tricolour flag to Arunima Sinha, marking the beginning of her expedition to Mount Vinson, Antarctica. Ms. Arunima Sinha, the first female Divyang to climb Mount Everest.
Lokmat Parliamentary Awards - Eight parliamentarians were honoured by Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu for their contribution in strengthening parliamentary democracy. List of winners of Lokmat Parliamentary Awards 2018 –
Lifetime achievement award - Rajya Sabha MP Sharad Pawar and Murli Manohar Joshi
Best Parliamentarian Award - Ghulam Nabi Azad and Nishikant Dubey
Best Debut Woman Parliamentarian (Lok Sabha) - Hema Malini
Best Woman Parliamentarian - Lok Sabha MP Rama Devi
Best Woman Parliamentarian in The Rajya Sabha - DMK leader Kanimozhi
Best Debut Woman Parliamentarian (Rajya Sabha) - Chhaya Verma
Jnanpith Award - Noted English writer Amitav Ghosh has been honoured with this year's Jnanpith Award, a literary award given to an author for "outstanding contribution towards literature".
Mary Kom - The Manipur Government on December 11, 2018 honoured AIBA World Women Boxing Gold medallist MC Mary Kom with the title "Meethoileima" (par excellent queen).
 ‘Period. End of Sentence’ - A documentary by Guneet Monga called 'Period. End of Sentence' has made it to the Oscar shortlist in the Documentary Short Subject category. This is a film about women in India fighting against the deeply rooted stigma of menstruation and delving upon the work of real-life ‘Pad Man’ Arunachalam Muruganantham. India’s entry for the Foreign Language Film Category, Village Rockstars is out of the Oscar race.
Star Screen Awards - Star Screen Awards 2018 were announced in Mumbai –
Best Actor Award (Male) - Ranveer Singh for Padmaavat.
Best Actor (Female) - Alia Bhatt for her performance in Raazi
Best Director award - Sriram Raghavan for Andhadhun
Best Film award – Stree
Best Popular Actor (Male) - Rajkummar Rao
Lifetime Achievement Award - Shabana Azmi
Best Music - Amit Trivedi for Manmarziyaan
Ashok Amritraj - Producer Ashok Amritraj was honoured with the French Knight of the National Order of Merit for his contribution to the world of cinema and Indo-French film industry.
Coin on Atal Bihari Vajpayee - Prime Minister Narendra Modi released a Rs 100 commemorative coin in memory of the former Prime Minister. Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s birth anniversary, which falls on 25th December, is celebrated as 'Good Governance Day'. He was conferred with the Bharat Ratna was in 2014.
Champions of Change Award - Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh was conferred the 'Champions of Change' award by vice pesident M Venkaiah Naidu for exemplary leadership in bringing about transformation in governance in the northeastern state. Under the 'Aspirational Districts Programme', government had identified 115 most least developed districts in the country. Manipur was chosen for its all-round development on various parameters in all its 'aspirational' districts.
Skoch Award - Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has been conferred the Skoch Award for National Significance. The award has been conferred on the Ministry considering its purpose and critical role played in installing about 73 GW renewable energy capacity in the country.
Start-Up Ranking 2018 - The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) announced the results of the first ever States’ Start-up Ranking 2018 –
Best Performer – Gujarat
Top Performers - Karnataka, Kerala, Odisha, and Rajasthan
Colin O'Brady - A 33-year-old man Colin O'Brady from the United States has become the first person to complete a solo trek across Antarctica without any assistance. He finished the 1,500km journey across the frozen continent in 54 days.
ICC Cricket Hall of Fame - Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting was formally inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame. Ponting was named in the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame along with former India captain Rahul Dravid and England woman wicketkeeper-batter Claire Taylor.
Tansen Samman - Noted sitar player Manju Mehta has been conferred with the 'Tansen Samman' for 2018 by the Madhya Pradesh government for her contribution in the field of music. The 'Raja Mansingh Tomar Honour' was given to the Sankat Mochan Pratishthan in Varanasi for 2017 and the Natrang Pratishthan of New Delhi for 2018.
Awards on Disaster Management - Government has instituted annual awards to recognise excellent work in the field of disaster management. The three awards, named 'Subhash Chandra Bose Aapda Prabhandhan Puraskar', will be awarded to institutions and individuals working silently but persistently on mitigation and preparedness towards minimising the impact of future disasters. Winners will be declared on January 23, 2019, on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.
World’s 100 Most Powerful Women - German Chancellor Angela Merkel retained the top spot in The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women 2018. She is followed by UK Prime Minister Theresa May. Four Indians are also included in the list. Nadar Malhotra, CEO, HCL Technologies is ranked 51st on the list. Mazumdar-Shaw, Founder and Chair, Biocon, is ranked 60. Shobhana Bhartia, Chairperson and Managing Director, HT Media, is ranked 88th. Priyanka Chopra comes in at the 94th spot.
Richest Indian Celebrity - Bollywood superstar Salman Khan is the richest Indian celebrity, according to the 2018 Forbes India Celebrity 100 list, which he has topped for the third consecutive year. Shah Rukh Khan has fallen out of the top 10 list. Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli was 2nd spot while Actor Akshay Kumar on 3rd spot.
Vedangi Kulkarni - Indian woman Vedangi Kulkarni has become the fastest Asian to cycle the globe.  Vedangi completed 29,000 kilometers' distance required to qualify as bicycling across the globe. She spent 159 days in 14 countries.
Sahitya Akademi Awards - Sahitya Akademi announced its annual Awards in 24 languages. Awards will be presented on 29th January next year at New Delhi. This year’s winners include Sanjib Chattopadhyay for Bengali, Anees Salim for English, Sharifa Vijliwala for her essays in Gujarati and Chitra Mudgal for Hindi.
Best Performing Police Station - Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh released the list of best-performing police stations across the nation during the ongoing Director Generals and Inspector Generals of Police at Kevadiya in Gujarat. The top three police stations in India for 2018 are - Kalu (Bikaner, Rajasthan), Campbell Bay ( Andaman & Nicobar Islands) and Farakka (Murshidabad, West Bengal).
Mohammed Rafi Award - The Mohammed Rafi Award has been bestowed upon late music composer Laxmikant Shantaram Kudalkar and playback singer Usha Timothy. Kudalkar, of the Laxmikant-Pyarelal duo, was given the Mohammed Rafi Lifetime Achievement Award.
National Energy Conservation Awards - Indian Railways bagged 17 awards at the 'National Energy Conservation Awards (NECA) 2018' held in New Delhi. The awards are given by the Bureau of Energy Efficiency under the Ministry of Power to various institutions for adopting energy efficiency measures.
Award For National Unity - Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi announced the institution of a new national annual honour for National Unity on the pattern of Padma Awards.   This Award would be open to every Indian who has contributed to national unity in any manner.
ITF World Champions - The International Tennis Federation announced that Serbia’s Novak Djokovic and Romania’s Simona Halep have been named the 2018 ITF World Champions. Djokovic receives the honour for the sixth time, while it is the first year Halep has been recognised.
Sonam Kapoor - Sonam Kapoor has been named People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India's Person of the Year for 2018. Sonam Kapoor has been known to be an advocate for animal rights.
Krishi Karman Award - Jharkhand has been selected for "Krishi Karman" award in the rice category from the Union Ministry of Agriculture.
Manika Batra - Manika Batra won the 'Breakthrough Table Tennis Star' award at the prestigious International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Star Awards in Incheon, South Korea. India coach Massimo Costantini won Table Tennis Star Coach award.
Australian Cricket Awards - Cricket Australia (CA) and the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) announced to rebrand its Allan Border Medal to Australian Cricket Awards from 2019 onwards. 
Treatment Plant for Clean Ganga - The Public-Private Partnership for the wastewater treatment plants across the Ganga Basin, which has been supported by the Hybrid Annuity Model of World Bank won the World Bank’s Sustainable Development Vice President’s Award in 2018.
HelpUsGreen - An Indian private project, HelpUsGreen, which collects flowers from temples and mosques across many cities in Uttar Pradesh and recycles them to produce natural incense and organic fertilizers, is one of 15 ground-breaking projects from around the world that has won this year's UN climate action award.
Self Defence Programme - Delhi Police has entered the Limca Book of Records by training over two lakh women and girls under their self-defence programme in 2017.
Bangladesh Honoured 12 Indian - Bangladesh honoured 12 Indian war veterans as it celebrated the 47th anniversary of the ‘Victory Day’, marking its emergence as an independent nation following the 1971 Liberation War.
PETA Award - Delhi Minister of Food Supplies, Environment and Forest and Elections Imran Hussain was awarded by the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)-India for banning the Chinese Manjha, or the glass-coated kite strings, across Delhi.
Glinka World Soil Prize 2018 - Rattan Lal, a distinguished university professor of soil science at the Ohio State University, won the ‘Glinka World Soil Prize 2018’ in a ceremony at the headquarters of UN FAO in Rome. 
World Scholar’s Cup - Aadi Sai Vijaykaran created history by winning the Junior Debate Championship at the World Scholar’s Cup held at Yale University, the USA. It is the first time an individual from India has won the coveted title.
Meng Wanzhou - China has demanded that Canada release the arrested Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou or face consequences. Ms Meng, Huawei's chief financial officer and daughter of the firm's founder, is accused of breaking US sanctions on Iran. She was held in Vancouver, Canada and faces extradition to the US.
Nawaz Sharif - An anti-corruption court in Pakistan sentenced ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif to seven years in jail and imposed 2.5 million US Dollars fine in the Al-Azizia Steel Mills graft case. However, it acquitted him in the Flagship Investments corruption case in the high-profile Panama Papers scandal.
Sajjan Kumar - The Delhi High Court convicted Congress leader Sajjan Kumar and sentenced him to life imprisonment for conspiracy to commit murder in the 1984 Anti Sikh riots case. 

Person on Visit

Ibrahim Mohamed Solih - Maldives' new President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih arrived on a three-day state visit. Solih, who surprisingly defeated Maldivian strongman Abdulla Yameen in polls in September, arrived India on his first foreign visit after assuming office. Relations between India and the Maldives deteriorated further after Yameen imposed emergency on February 5 2018.
Ram Nath Kovind - President Ram Nath Kovind is on a state visit to Myanmar. He dedicated - India assisted project 'Advanced Centre for Agricultural Research & Education' (ACARE) - to the people of Myanmar. Earlier, President Ram Nath Kovind dedicated the Advanced Centre for Agricultural Research and Education to the people of Myanmar. The President also dedicated the Rice Bio-Park to the people of Myanmar. 
Cyril Ramaphosa - Prime Minister Narendra Modi met South African President Cyril Ramaphosa on the sidelines of the G-20 summit and invited him to be the Chief Guest at the Republic Day celebrations next year, which also marks the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. The South African leader accepted the invitation to grace the occasion.
Lotay Tshering - Bhutan Prime Minister Lotay Tshering will be on a three-day visit to India, during which he will hold talks with counterpart Narendra Modi. This is Tshering's first visit to the country since taking charge last month. The two sides are likely to discuss all aspects of bilateral relations, including high-level exchanges, people-to-people ties, and economic, development and hydropower cooperation.
Anders Samuelsen - Foreign Affairs Minister of Denmark Anders Samuelsen arrived in New Delhi on a two-day official visit. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Foreign Affairs Minister of Denmark co-chaired the 2nd session of Joint Commission Meeting in New Delhi. The two Ministers will hold discussions on various aspects of bilateral ties as well as important regional and multilateral issues of mutual interest.
Wang Yi - External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will hold extensive talks with her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi under the newly established framework to enhance people-to-people exchanges between the two neighbours. Wang is on official visit of India.
Jean-Yves Le Drian - Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs of France Jean-Yves Le Drian arrived in New Delhi. India and France held discussions on deepening the bilateral strategic partnership through cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region, defence, space and civil nuclear energy sectors.
Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa - Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa, Chief of the Air Staff is on a goodwill visit to Japan from 10-14 Dec 18. The visit is intended to further strengthen the existing defence cooperation between the air Forces of the two countries.
Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson - Foreign Minister of Iceland Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson met External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in New Delhi and held discussions on bilateral, multilateral and international issues of interest. Mr Thórdarson, who is on 8-day visit to India, arrived in New Delhi.
US President Visited Iraq – US President Donald Trump used a lightning visit to Iraq — his first with U.S. troops in a conflict zone since being elected — to defend the withdrawal from Syria and declare an end to America’s role as the global “policeman”.

Person Died

George Herbert Walker Bush - George Herbert Walker Bush, the 41st President of the United States from 1989 to 1993 passed away. He helped steer America through the end of the Cold War. He is also the father of 43th US President George W Bush.
Mrinal Sen - Legendary filmmaker Mrinal Sen passed away at the age of 95 in Kolkata. A Padma Bhushan and Dada Saheb Phalke awardee, Sen paved the way for parallel cinema in the country.
Mushirul Hasan - Padma Shri Professor Mushirul Hasan, a renowned historian who served as vice-chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia, passed away.

Summit / Conference / Festival / Meeting

Climate Change Summit in Katowice - After two weeks of intense negotiations at Katowice in Poland ministers of 200 nations finally reached consensus on rules to implement the 2015 Paris climate agreement. The Paris accord aims to limit rise in global atmospheric temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius from pre-industrial revolution levels. The concerns of developing nations including India and least developed nations on funding for carbon credit were finally addressed. 24th Conference of the Parties (COP24) under UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) saw the adoption of ‘Katowice package’, the rulebook for implementation of the 2015 Paris climate agreement. The meeting was presided by Polish President, Michal Kurtyka.
G20 Pledged to Implement Paris Agreement - G20 signatories to the Paris Agreement on climate except the US have pledged to implement of the pact in full. In the final communique after the summit, G20 leaders said that the agreement is irreversible. They also took note, of UN scientists' call for a more ambitious target of reducing the warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. But the US reiterated its withdrawal from the agreement and affirms its strong commitment to economic growth and energy access and security.
AI 4 All Global Hackathon - NITI Aayog organised ‘AI 4 All Global Hackathon’ to source sustainable, innovative and technologically-enabled solutions to address various challenges in the development space, with the vision of 'Artificial Intelligence, AI for All'. NITI Aayog is now partnering with Perlin – a Singapore-based AI start up - to launch the ‘AI 4 All Global Hackathon’
India-ASEAN InnoTech Summit - The first India-ASEAN InnoTech Summit was held in New Delhi. It was organized by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) in association with the Department of Science & Technology (DST) and Ministry of External Affairs.
National Children’s Science Congress - Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik inaugurated 26th edition of National Children’s Science Congress in Bhubaneswar in which as many as 800 students from ten Asian and seven Gulf countries are participating. This year’s theme is ‘Science, Technology and Innovations: For clean, green and healthy nation’.
Global SME Business Summit - 15th Global SME Business Summit was organised by the Ministry of MSME and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in association with Government e-marketplace in New Delhi. The theme of the event was ‘Building Partnerships through Global Value Chains.’
Gulf Cooperation Council Summit - The 39th Gulf Cooperation Council Summit was inaugurated by the King Salman of Saudi Arabia in Riyadh. The GCC comprises Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. 40th Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit will be held in the United Arab Emirates.
India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission - Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and her Russian counterpart General Sergei Shoigu participated in the 18th meeting of the India-Russia Inter-Governmental Commission on Military Technical Cooperation, IRIGC-MTC in New Delhi. During the meeting, both sides discussed a wide range of issues relating to defence equipment, industry and technological engagement between the two countries.
Vivah Panchami - In Nepal, celebrations of Vivah Panchami, the wedding of Lord Rama and Goddess Sita, are on in the historic Janakpur city. Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath and his counterpart from Nepal’s Province 2, Lalbabu Raut will also grace the occasion.
Hornbill Festival and Nagaland Statement Day - Home Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated 19th Hornbill Festival in Nagaland on 55th Nagaland Statehood Day 1st December. In 1963, Nagaland attains its statehood and was declared as the 16th state. US Ambassador to India Kenneth I Juster was invited as the guest of honour.
Dwijing Festival - In Assam, the third Dwijing Festival has begun on the bank of Aye river at Chirang district. Chief Minister Sarbanand Sonowal will attend the event. Adventure sports, food mart, cultural events, traditional games are being organized in the 12-day long event. 
One District One Product - The One District, One Product Regional Summit was held at in Varanasi. One District One Product’ scheme is aimed at enhancing the skills of local people and increasing the reach of the  indigenous trades, crafts and products from small towns and small districts in the state. 
International Gita Mahotsav - International Gita Mahotsav 2018 has been inaugurated at the Brahma Sarovar in Kurukshetra. The President of Mauritius Parmasivum Pillay Vyapoory, the Governor of Haryana Satyadeo Narayan Arya and chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar were participated in the inaugural ceremony of the festival.
International Conference on Sustainable Water Management - The first International Conference on ‘Sustainable Water Management’ began in Mohali, Punjab. The theme of the international conference is ‘Sustainable Water Management’.
Global Agriculture and Food Summit - Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh inaugurated Global Agriculture and Food Summit 2018 in Ranchi, Jharkhand. Seven countries, including China, Israel and Malaysia are participating in the two-day Summit. 
Meeting of Heads of Custom - India is organising a two-day meet at Delhi where heads of Customs of at least 21 countries in Asia Pacific are participating to devise a common strategy to counter organised crime such as narco-terrorism, money laundering and gold smuggling. Representatives of Interpol, UN Office for Drugs and Crime and the World Customs Organisation (WCO) are among the participants.
Indian Social Science Congress - The 42nd Indian Social Science Congress was inaugurated by Manipur governor Dr Najma Heptulla in Odisha. The theme of the Congress was ‘Human Future in Digital Era.’ 
India will Host G20 summit-2022 - Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that India will host the G20 summit in 2022, which also happens to be the year when the country celebrates its 75th Independence Day.
Asia Pacific Summit 2018 - The Asia Pacific Summit 2018 began on December 1, 2018 in Kathmandu, Nepal. The Theme of two-day Summit is "Addressing the Critical Challenges of Our Time: Interdependence, Mutual Prosperity, and Universal Values".
India Water Summit - The three days India Water Summit concluded in New Delhi. 
India Venture Capital Summit held in Goa. The theme of the Summit was ‘Mobilizing Global Capital for Innovation in India.’ 

Act / Ordinance / Judgment

Cabinet Approved Gaganyaan Project - Union Cabinet approved the Gaganyaan Programme with demonstration of Indian Human Spaceflight capability to low earth orbit for a mission duration ranging from one orbital period to a maximum of seven days. Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mark III (GSLV MK-III) will be used to carry the orbital module which have the necessary provisions for sustaining a 3 member crew for the duration of the mission. The total fund requirement for the programme is Rs 10,000 crore. Two unmanned flights and one manned flight will be undertaken as part of this programme. The testing phase is expected to begin from December 2020 and the mission will be undertaken from 2022. Previously, Russia, United States and China have been the only countries in the world to have launched manned space missions successfully.
Cabinet Approved Amendment in Two Act - Linking mobile phone numbers and bank accounts with Aadhaar is no longer mandatory after the Cabinet approved amending the two existing laws in light of the Supreme Court’s verdict. The Cabinet approved amendments to the Telegraph Act and the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) after the Supreme Court in September imposed restrictions on the use of Aadhaar by private companies, and struck down Section 57 of the Aadhaar Act that made seeding of the biometric ID with SIMs and bank accounts mandatory. UIDAI is proposed to assume a regulatory role with enhanced power to take enforcement actions on misuse of the national biometric ID and impose stiff penalties for violations such as failure to obtain consent for authentication and in case of data breaches. Telecom companies and banks insisting on Aadhaar as the sole identity and address proof will be liable to a penalty of up to Rs 1 crore and jail for their staffers concerned — ranging from three to 10 years.
Shahpurkandi Dam - The Centre approved implementation of the Shahpurkandi Dam project on the Ravi in Punjab. The move will allow India to use the water which at present goes waste flowing through the Madhopur Headworks downstream to Pakistan. Once completed in June 2022, it will improve irrigation potential of farmers in Jammu & Kashmir and Punjab. The decision in this regard was taken by the Union Cabinet, keeping in view the provisions of the Indus Water Treaty between India and Pakistan. Under this 1960 treaty, India has full rights for utilisation of waters of the three eastern rivers namely Ravi, Beas and Satluj.
Consumer Protection Bill - Lok Sabha passed the Consumer Protection Bill, 2018 that seeks to replace the Consumer Protection Act, 1986.  It seeks to establish Consumer Disputes Redressal Commissions at District, State and National levels. The district Commissions are authorised to look into complaints involving claims worth one crore rupees. The State Commissions’ limit is to be increased from one crore rupees to 15 crore rupees. Complaints over and above that limit would be handled by the National Commission. The penalty and jail term have been linked to impact of adulterated products on human health with a proposal for seven years to life imprisonment and at least Rs 10 lakh fine in case of death caused by any adulterated products.
Surrogacy Act Passed in Lok Sabha - Lok Sabha passed the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill 2016, aimed at banning commercial surrogacy to protect women from exploitation. The intending couple must be Indian citizens and married for at least five years with at least one of them being infertile. Surrogacy is allowed from a "close relative" only. Singles, homosexuals and live-in couples cannot apply for surrogacy. Besides, couples who already have children will also not be allowed to opt for surrogacy.
Triple Talaq Bill Passed in Lok Sabha - The Lok Sabha passed the amended Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2018, which criminalises Triple Talaq. The bill was passed with 238 MPs voting in its favour and 12 opposing it. Congress and AIADMK MPs staged a walkout. The bill, which will now go to the Rajya Sabha, proposes that instant Triple Talaq will be illegal and void and will attract a jail term of three years for the husband. The proposed law would be applicable to the entire country, except in Jammu and Kashmir.
New High Court For Andhra Pradesh - Andhra Pradesh got its own High Court in Amaravati on December 26, 2018. It will start functioning from January 1. It will be the 25th High Court in the country. Till now Hyderabad High Court has been functioning as common high court for Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
President Rule in Jammu and Kashmir - President’s rule has been imposed in Jammu and Kashmir, the first time since 1996. The state was placed under Governor’s rule in June after the BJP pulled out of an alliance with the PDP. The Governor’s rule ended on December 19. The Governor, Satya Pal Malik, last month, dissolved the Legislative Assembly.
Khalistan Liberation Force Banned - The Union Home Ministry has banned Khalistan Liberation Force (KLF) under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act -1967, noting that it was floated with the objective of establishing an independent State by secession of Punjab through violent means.
Manipur Assembly Passed Bill on Mob Lynching - The Manipur Assembly has passed a bill unanimously which recommends life imprisonment for those involved in mob violence, if it results in the death of a person. The bill was introduced in the assembly in the wake of incidents of mob lynchings in the state.
Amendment in POCSO Act - The Union Cabinet approved the proposal for Amendment in the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012 to make punishment more stringent for committing sexual crimes against children. The POCSO Act, 2012 was enacted to Protect the Children from Offences of Sexual Assault, Sexual harassment and pornography with due regard for safeguarding the interest and well-being of children.
National Commission for Indian System of Medicine Bill - The Union Cabinet has approved the draft National Commission for Indian System of Medicine Bill, 2018. The NCIM will promote availability of affordable healthcare services in all parts of the country. The draft Bill will enable the constitution of a National Commission with four autonomous boards for the purpose of conducting overall education in Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha and Sowarigpa. To assess the standard of teachers before appointment and promotions, the Bill proposes a common entrance and an exit exam.
National Commission for Homeopathy Bill - The Union Cabinet approved the draft National Commission for Homeopathy Bill, 2018, which seeks to replace the existing regulator Central Council of Homoeopathy with a new body to ensure transparency and accountability.
Kuno Wildlife Sanctuary - Madhya Pradesh State government has declared Kuno wildlife sanctuary as a national park in compliance with the last condition imposed by a Supreme Court-appointed committee for the much awaited ‘translocation of Asiatic lions from Gir in Gujarat.’
Delhi Assembly Passed Resolution - The Delhi Assembly passed a resolution urging the Centre to withdraw the Bharat Ratna from former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, alleging that he justified the 1984 anti-Sikh riots that followed the assassination of his mother and the then prime minister Indira Gandhi.
Law Against Sextortion - Jammu and Kashmir has become the first state in the country to enact a law banning sexual exploitation of women by those in positions of authority, having a fiduciary relationship or a public servant. Any person committing the offence of sextortion shall be punished with rigorous imprisonment for a term not less than three years.
Transgender Persons Bill - Lok Sabha passed the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill. The Bill prohibits discrimination against a transgender person in areas such as education, employment and healthcare. It also directs the central and state governments to provide welfare schemes for them. 
Punjab Assembly Passed Woman Reservation Bill - Punjab Assembly unanimously passed the resolution moved by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh urging Central government to hasten enactment of Women's Reservation Bill providing for the reservation of one-third of seats in the Lok Sabha and Legislative Assemblies for women. 
Ban on The Sale of Online Medicines - The Delhi High Court ordered a ban on the sale of online medicines by e-pharmacists across the country. The court directed both Central and state government to ensure immediate implementation of the order. The PIL contested that lakhs of medicines were being sold on the internet every day in an unbridled manner and without any regulation posing a huge risk to people. 
Umbrella University in UP - The Uttar Pradesh Government has decided to establish an umbrella university to control all the medical and dental colleges and nursing institutions in the state. The university will be named after former Prime Minister, late Atal Bihari Vajpayee. It will control the quality of medical education by one syllabus and one education session. It will also help in transparency in entrance and examination system.
One Stop Centre in Every District - The Supreme Court asked the states and Union territories to set up at least one ‘one stop centre’ in every district within one year to provide integrated assistance to rape victims through police, medical, legal and prosecution services along with counselling, relief and rehabilitation.
Visa on Arrival for South Korea - South Korean nationals can now fly into India and obtain a visa on arrival since the home ministry recently approved South Korea as the only country other than Japan eligible for this facility.
Guidelines for Online Travel Aggregators - The Union Ministry of Tourism has formulated the guidelines for approval and re-approval of Online Travel Aggregators (OTA) to ensure adequate safeguards against deficiency of service, alternate arrangements and punitive deterrence. An Online Travel Aggregator is an intermediary or an agent selling travel products and services such as the airlines, car rental, cruise lines, hotels and accommodation, railways and vacation packages on behalf of suppliers using internet as a medium.
Freight Village in Varanasi - The Ministry of Shipping approved the development of Rs 156 crore Freight Village in Varanasi, adjoining the Inland Waterways Terminal on River Ganga. The Varanasi Freight Village will be developed by the Inland Waterways Authority of India. A Freight Village is a designated area where facilities for various modes of transportation, distribution of goods and other logistics are available in a synchronised manner on a large scale.
Central Assistance for Natural Disaster - The Centre released disaster relief assistance worth over Rs 3,700 crore to three states, including Kerala which was hit by massive floods in August and will get the lion’s share of Rs 3,048 crore as additional assistance from the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF). While Andhra Pradesh, affected by cyclone ‘Titli’ earlier this year, has been assigned Rs 539.52 crore, Rs 131.16 crore will be given to Nagaland which had witnessed floods.
Central Assistance to Tamil Nadu - High-Level Committee (HLC) chaired by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh approved additional assistance of Rs 1,146.12 crore from the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) to Tamil Nadu, which was affected by cyclone 'Gaja' recently. 
Additional Assistance To Odisha And Tripura - The High-Level Committee chaired by Union Home Minister, Rajnath Singh approved the additional assistance from National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF) of 1023.59 crore rupees to Odisha and 268.63 crore rupees to Tripura. These two States were affected by cyclone Titli and floods & landslides during the recent months.
Penalty on Delhi Government - The National Green Tribunal (NGT) directed the Delhi government to deposit an environmental compensation of Rs. 25 crore with the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) for failing to curb air pollution in the Capital.
Speedy Trial Against Legislator - Supreme Court directed the High Courts of Bihar and Kerala to prioritise trials of criminal cases against former and present Members of Parliament (MPs) and Members of Legislative Assemblies (MLAs) involving offences punishable with life imprisonment.
2022: A Major Milestone –
# India will host the annual G-20 summit in 2022. 13th G-20 summit 2018 was held in Argentinean capital Buenos Aires. 14th edition will be held in Osaka, Japan in 2019 while Saudi Arabia will host the 15th summit in Riyadh in 2020.
# India will celebrate 75th anniversary of Independence in 2022.
# India is planning to become a non-permanent member of the United Nations’ Security Council for the year 2021-22. It was last member of the UNSC in 2011-2012.
# India persuaded Japan to push the deadline for launching the Bullet train project to 2022.
# India has set 2022 as the deadline for the launch of India’s maiden human space flight programme.
# Housing for All target will be achieved by 2022.
# Doubling of Farmers per capita Income by 2022.
Exim Bank Extended Loan to Tanzania - Export-Import Bank of India (Exim Bank) has extended a credit facility of USD 500 million to Tanzania for water supply projects in the  country.
India and France Signed MoU - The Union Cabinet has been apprised of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and France in the field of energy efficiency/energy conservation. The MoU was signed on October 17, 2018.
India and Tajikistan Signed MoU - The Union Cabinet has been apprised of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Tajikistan on Cooperation on peaceful uses of space Technology for Development. 
India and Russia Signed MoU - The Union Cabinet has been apprised of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and Russia on Joint Activities under Human Spaceflight Programme. 
India and Algeria Sighed MoU - Union Cabinet approved the agreement between India and Algeria on cooperation in the field of space sciences, technologies and applications.

Event in News

Election Result of Five States - Assembly election results for five states were announced. The Congress party secured a clear mandate in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan while also clinching the seat of power in Madhya Pradesh after giving a tough fight to the BJP. The TRS retained Telangana and in Mizoram, the MNF has come to power.
MNF Won Election in Mizoram - The Mizo National Front has won majority in the Mizoram State Assembly Elections 2018. MNF won 26 seats in the 40-member assembly, followed by Congress in the second position with 5 seats.
Congress Won Election in Chhattisgarh - The Congress forming the next government in Chhattisgarh became a mere formality as chief minister Raman Singh of BJP resigned, after his party's disappointing performance in the state Assembly polls.
TRS Won Election in Telangana - TRS is going to form the government for the second time in Telangana. The party won 88 seats out of the total 119 in the state assembly. Congress bagged 19 and AIMIM 7 seats.
Modi Renamed Three Islands - Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced renaming of three islands of the Andaman and Nicobar archipelago as a tribute to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. The Ross Island was renamed Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Dweep, the Neil Island as Shaheed Dweep and the Havelock Island as Swaraj Dweep. On this day in 1943, Bose had suggested that Andaman and Nicobar Islands be renamed Shahid and Swaraj Dweep. Mr. Modi released a commemorative stamp, its first-day cover and a Rs 75 coin.
Kartarpur Corridor - Pakistan government will allow Indian Sikhs to visit Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, Kartarpur Sahib through the proposed Kartarpur Corridor in 15-member groups and will not issue permits to more than 500 pilgrims per day. The draft of the proposals mentions that each pilgrim will also have to carry his passport and security clearance certificate from the Indian government in English.
Bogibeel Bridge - Assam is all set to get India's longest rail-cum-road bridge Bogibeel Bridge between Dhemaji district and Dibrugarh district on December 25, as Prime Minister Narendra Modi lays open the 4.94-km-long strategically important project over the mighty Brahmaputra at Bogibeel.
Train 18 Will Run Between Delhi And Varanasi - The state-of-the-art engine-less Train 18 will run between Delhi and Varanasi. As many as 36 train set coaches have been planned, to be developed during the financial year 2018-2019 at Integral Coach Factory (ICF), located in Chennai. Train 18, the ‘Make in India’ engine-less train, recently became Indian Railways’ fastest train by crossing the 180 kmph mark during its trials. 
Eklavya Model Residential Schools - The Cabinet Committee has given its in-principle approval for setting up of Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRSs) in every block with more than 50 per cent ST population and at least 20,000 tribal persons. Cabinet Committee has approved a financial assistance worth Rs. 2242.03 crore during 2018-19 and 2019-20 for rolling out the revamped scheme.
National Rail and Transportation Institute - Union minister Piyush Goyal will dedicate to the nation India’s first railway university and third such in the world after Russia and China. The National Rail and Transportation Institute (NRTI) in Vadodara, Gujarat opened its doors to the first batch in two fully-residential undergraduate courses in September this year.
First Private Unmanned Aerial Vehicle - The country’s first private unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) manufacturing facility and the first outside Israel to manufacture the Hermes 900 medium altitude long distance endurance UAV took off at the Adani Aerospace Park in Hyderabad. The facility a 51:49 joint venture between Adani Group’s Adani Defence & Aerospace and Israel’s Elbit Systems.
100 Rupee Coin - A new 100-rupee coin with the image of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee will be launched soon. The coin will weigh 35 grams. One side of the coin will have a portrait of Atal Bihari Vajpayee and The other side of the coin will bear the Lion Capitol of Ashoka Pillar. 
Dhanushkodi Railway Station - The government has approved laying a new broad gauge railway line connecting Rameshwaram with Dhanushkodi, which is believed to be the starting point of Ram Sethu and a major pilgrim destination. Indian Railways will also construct a new Pamban bridge over the Arabian sea and bring Ram Setu on the railway map.
Ban on Single-Use Plastics - After Maharastra and Uttar Pradesh, European Union has also decided to put a ban on single-use plastics items like straws, plastic plates, drink stirrers, cutlery and cotton swabs, in order to combat plastic pollution that threatens oceans and marine life. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is pushing a plan to end the use of single-use plastic in India completely by the end of 2022.
National Cancer Institute - India’s largest cancer institute, the National Cancer Institute has been soft launched at Haryana’s Jhajjar area. The aim is to strengthen research and also bring down the patient load at All India Institute of Medical Sciences’ (AIIMS) cancer centre. The hospital will be fully functional by December 2020.
Jinnah House in Mumbai - India strongly rejected Pakistan’s claim of ownership of the Jinnah House in Mumbai and said the property belongs to it. The Jinnah House on Malabar Hill in Mumbai was designed by architect Claude Batley in European style and Pakistan’s founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah lived there in the late 1930s. Pakistan has been demanding that the property be handed over to it for housing its Mumbai consulate.
Kaiga Atomic Power Station - The indigenously developed Kaiga Atomic Power Station in Karnataka has set a new world record, with one of its units operating uninterrupted for more than 940 days. This is a record for all kinds of nuclear power-generating units in the world.
National Clean Air Programme - The Centre has earmarked Rs 300 crore for implementation of the upcoming National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) for financial year 2018-19 and 2019-20. The NCAP is a pan-India national level strategy to tackle increasing air pollution problems in a comprehensive and time-bound manner. The Centre has set a mid-term (five-year) target to reduce air pollution by 20-30% by 2024, taking 2017 as base year.
Centre Issued Surveillance Order - The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) issued an order authorising 10 Central agencies including Intelligence Bureau, Central Bureau of Investigation and National Investigation Agency to intercept, monitor, and decrypt “any information generated, transmitted, received or stored in any computer.” Subscriber or service provider or any person in charge of the computer resource will be bound to extend all facilities and technical assistance to the agencies and failing to do will invite seven-year imprisonment and fine.
International Rice Research Institute - Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicated the International Rice Research Institute's South Asia Regional Centre (ISARC) campus to the nation in Varanasi. The centre will serve as a hub for rice research and training in South Asia.
Fifty Railway Station Restructured - Fifty world-class railway stations will be completed by the Indian Railway Station Development Corporation (IRSDC) by 2022. Phase I of the Habibganj railway station in Madhya Pradesh, being redeveloped on the lines of Germany’s Heidelberg station in the public-private partnership (PPP) mode, will be the first to be commissioned in February next.
Coastal Regulation Zone - Centre has approved new norms to regulate development activities in coastal zones along India’s over 7,500 km of coastline, streamlining Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) clearance procedures and allowing development activities in coastal rural areas and temporary tourism facilities in beaches. Besides, a 'No Development Zone' (NDZ) of 20 meters is earmarked for all Islands close to the mainland coast and for all backwater islands in the mainland.
Atal Bihari Vajpayee International Schools - Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has launched the ‘Bharat Ratna Atal Bihari Vajpayee International Schools’ for students in rural areas.  Initially, 13 Zilla Parishad (ZP) schools would be part of the international board and it would be expanded in the coming years.
‘USTAAD’ Developed by Indian Railways - Central Railway's Nagpur division has developed the robot named USTAAD (Undergear Surveillance Through Artificial Intelligence Assisted Droid), which examines parts of the coach in real time with a HD camera and transmits them over WiFi. With the help of USTAAD, engineers can easily see and examine areas which are hard to see and hard to approach such as cramped or narrow spaces between under-gear parts.
New Norms for Channel Subscriber - Telecom Regulatory Authority of India said that the migration to the new framework is due on 29 December 2018. All existing packs/plans/bouquets to the subscribers will continue uninterrupted till 31st January 2019. TRAI has asked the Distribution Platform Operators (DPOs) to migrate all the subscribers to new framework from 1 February 2019 according to the options exercised by them.
High Security Registration Plates - All motor vehicles will come fitted with tamper-proof high-security registration plates (HSRPs) from April 1 to protect against counterfeiting. An HSRP is a chromium-based hologram applied by hot stamping on the number plates both at the front and back besides laser-branding of a permanent identification number.
Sadaiv Atal - Sadaiv Atal, a memorial of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, was dedicated to the nation on his 94th birth anniversary. Sadaiv Atal memorial will be managed by a trust headed by Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan.
Statue of Atal Bihari Vajpayee in Lucknow - A 25-foot-high statue of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee will be installed in Lok Bhavan, the Uttar Pradesh government secretariat in Lucknow.
Statue of Atal Bihari Vajpayee in Shimla - Former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s statue will soon be installed at the Ridge in Himachal Pradesh’s Shimla, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said. Thakur said the Rohtang tunnel would also be named after the former prime minister as it was his brainchild.
Prepaid Electric Meters in Three Years - The government plans to make all electricity meters smart prepaid in three years from April 1, 2019 in a bid to cut transmission and distribution losses. Move towards smart meters is a pro-poor step as consumers need not pay the whole month’s bill in one go, they can pay as per their requirements.
Information Fusion Centre - Indian Ocean Region - Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman launched the Information Fusion Centre - Indian Ocean Region, IFC-IOR at the Information Management and Analysis Centre, IMAC in Gurugram. IFC - IOR shall be a collaborative construct that will work with partners, countries as well as international agencies to enhance maritime security and safety.
SDG India Index - The NITI Aayog has developed the SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) India Index which is a comprehensive index to measure progress of states/UTs, through a single measurable index and the First Baseline Report for 2018 was prepared with the support of United Nations in India. Himachal Pradesh, Kerala and Tamil Nadu have emerged as top performing states while Assam, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh are the worst performing states.
Hamid Nihal Ansari - Indian national Hamid Nihal Ansari, a software engineer moved into India through the Attari-Wagah border in Amritsar after being released from Pakistan, where he had spent the last six years. Mr. Ansari was reportedly detained in 2012 by Pakistan’s intelligence agencies for illegally entering Pakistan from Afghanistan, reportedly to meet a girl he had befriended online, through a fake Pakistani identity card.
Cyclonic Storm Phethai - Andhra Pradesh sounded a high alert in the coastal region as a cyclonic storm Phethai in the Bay of Bengal was heading towards it and was likely to cross the region between Kakinada and Visakhapatnam.
Kevadiya Railway Station - President Ram Nath Kovind laid the foundation stone for Indian Railways’ Kevadiya station, thereby taking the first step to give the world’s tallest statue, Statue of Unity an easy connectivity with the rest of the country.
Jaitapur Nuclear Plant - French Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj reviewed the status of the European Pressurised Reactor (EPR) project in Jaitapur in coastal Maharashtra. The power plant will have six reactors with a capacity of 1,650 MW each. Once installed, the Jaitapur project will be the largest nuclear power plant in the world, with a total capacity of 9,600 MW. 
Railways Virtual Educational Expeditions - Railways has tied up with Google's education initiative to create and deliver virtual educational expeditions using 3-D imaging and virtual tours of its prominent heritage places. Railways is considering providing virtual reality glasses to passengers on rent so that they can have a glimpse of the sites without actually being there physically. In the first phase, virtual expeditions are being created for Kalka Shimla Railway (KSR) and CSMT, Mumbai -- both UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Real-Time Occupancy Status of Running Train - Hand-Held Terminals (HHTs), the new tablet devices will help TTEs (Travelling Ticket Examiner) update Indian Railways about the real-time occupancy status of a running train, hence increasing chances of waitlisted, RAC tickets getting confirmed. To begin with, the plan is to introduce these hand-held devices in all Shatabdi and Rajdhani Express trains.
Fees on Groundwater Extraction - In a bid to promote conservation of groundwater, the Central Ground Water Authority (CGWA) has notified a water conservation fee (WCF) that industries will need to pay on groundwater extraction starting from June 2019. However, the agriculture sector will be exempt from the fees.
Red Corner Notice Against Mehul Choksi - The Interpol issued a Red Corner Notice against diamond merchant Mehul Choksi in connection with the Rs 13,578-crore Punjab National Bank fraud. He is in Antigua which is a member country of Interpol.
Vijay Mallya - The UK court ordered the extradition of Indian business Vijay Mallya from Britain to India to face charges of fraud filed against him. India has been seeking the businessman’s extradition on charges of fraud and money laundering amounting to almost Rs 9,000 crore. He has been on bail since his arrest in Britain.
Kannur International Airport - Union Minister for Civil Aviation Suresh Prabhu inaugurated the Kannur International Airport. With this, Kerala became the only state in the country to have four international airports. Kochi, Kozhikode and Thiruvananthapuram are the other three cities with an international airport.
Modi: Most Popular Leader on Instagram - Prime Minister Narendra Modi emerged as the most popular global leader on social media platform Instagram with 14.8 million followers. According to a list published by online platform twiplomacy, Modi is followed by Indonesian President Joko Widodo with 12.2 million followers. With 10 million followers, US President Donald Trump is at the third position.
Elimination of Industrially Produced Trans Fat - Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) launched a new mass media campaign calling for the elimination of industrially produced trans fat in the food supply. Called “Heart Attack Rewind”, the 30 second public service announcement (PSA) - the first mass media campaign of its kind – will support FSSAI’s global target of eliminating trans fat in India by the year 2022, a year ahead of the global target by the World Health Organization (WHO).
Emergency Response Support System (ERSS) - Nagaland became the first state in the Northeast and second in the country after Himachal Pradesh to launch a pan-India single-number Emergency Response Support System (ERSS) which will have a special women safety feature ‘SHOUT’ for immediate assistance from police and volunteers. SHOUT feature has been made available exclusively for women in the ‘112 India’ mobile app which is connected to the ERSS.
Food Delivery By Drone - Online food ordering firm Zomato said that it has acquired drone start-up TechEagle Innovations. TechEagle would help Zoma carve out a path towards drone-based food delivery in India.
Coin on Paika Rebellion - Prime Minister Narendra Modi released a stamp and a coin to commemorate the Paika rebellion of 1817 in Odisha. The Paika Rebellion, many claim, was the first war of Independence against the British.
Mining Ban in Sariska Tiger Reserve - The National Green Tribunal banned all mining activities within 10 km radius of the Sariska Tiger Reserve. It also said that any further mining activity is subject to the clearance of leases by the National Board of Wildlife.
Niwas Samhita 2018 - Ministry of Power has launched the ECO Niwas Samhita 2018, an Energy Conservation Building Code for Residential Buildings (ECBC-R). The Code was launched on the occasion of National Energy Conservation Day 2018 (14th December).
Sterlite Copper Plant - The Tamil Nadu government will move the Supreme Court against the order of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) favouring the reopening of Vedanta's Sterlite Copper plant in Thoothukudi. The State had ordered the permanent closure of the plant on alleged pollution charges after the violent protests in May.
Nagaland As Disturbed Area - The government has declared the entire state of Nagaland as “disturbed area” for six more months, till June end, under the AFSPA (Armed Forces Special Powers Acts), which empowers the security forces to conduct operations anywhere and arrest anyone without any prior notice.
Concession for Transgender - The Indian Railways announced that it has decided to grant 40-per-cent concession in passenger fares to transgender senior citizens. The concession will be applicable to those of the third gender, who are aged 60 years or above. It will be available from January 1, 2019.

Banking and Economic News

5th Bi-Monthly Monetary Policy - Reserve Bank of India has kept the policy repo rate under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) unchanged at 6.5%. Consequently, the reverse repo rate under the LAF remains at 6.25%, and the marginal standing facility (MSF) rate. GDP growth for 2018-19 has been projected at 7.4%.
Repo rate – 6.5% (Unchanged)
Reverse Repo – 6.25% (Unchanged)
Cash Reserve Ratio – 4% (Unchanged)
Statutory Liquidity Ratio – 19.5% (Unchanged)
Bank Rate – 6.75% (Unchanged)
Marginal Standing Facility – 6.75% (Unchanged)
RBI Decided To Reduced SLR - The RBI has decided to reduce statutory liquidity ratio by 0.25 per cent every quarter beginning January. The calibrated reduction in statutory liquidity ratio (SLR) will continue till it reaches 18 per cent. The current SLR is 19.5 per cent. This reduction in SLR holding is likely to free up Rs 1-1.5 lakh crore of funds in the next one and half year into the banking system.
New Guideline For Floating Interest Rate - In a bid to ensure greater transparency, the RBI proposed that floating interest rates on personal, home, auto and micro and small enterprises (MSEs) loans will linked to external benchmarks like repo rate or treasury yields, from April 1 next year. Currently, banks follow system of internal benchmarks, including Prime Lending Rate (PLR), Benchmark Prime Lending Rate (BPLR), Base rate and Marginal Cost of Funds based Lending Rate (MCLR).
Indian Stock Market Overtook Germany - India's stock market overtook Germany to become the seventh largest in the world. The move reflects India's positive returns this year as companies' reliance on domestic demand enabled them to avoid the meltdown in other emerging markets spurred by Federal Reserve tightening and a trade war between the US and China.
Digital Public Credit Registry - The Reserve Bank of India shortlisted six major IT companies, including TCS, Wipro and IBM India, to set up a wide-based digital Public Credit Registry (PCR) for capturing details of all borrowers and wilful defaulters. The proposed PCR will also include data from entities like SEBI, the corporate affairs ministry, Goods and Service Tax Network (GSTN) and the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI). It will enable banks and financial institutions to get a 360-degree profile of the existing as well as prospective borrowers on a real-time basis.
Foreign Investment Facilitation Portal - The Foreign Investment Facilitation Portal (FIFP) is the online single point interface of the Government of India with investors to facilitate Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) after abolition of the erstwhile Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB). This portal is administered by Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP).
IDFC Bank Merged in Capital First - IDFC Bank and non-banking financial company (NBFC) Capital First has announced the completion of their merger. Following the merger, the board of IDFC Bank approved the appointment of V Vaidyanathan as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the merged entity. 
Survey on Retail Payment - Reserve Bank of India launched a 'Survey on Retail Payment Habits of Individuals (SRPHi)'. The survey will capture payment habits of individuals in six cities, including four metropolitan towns. It will cover a sample of 6,000 individuals from various socio-economic backgrounds across six cities including Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru and Guwahati. 
Capital Infusion in Public Sector Bank - Government said that there will be 83000 crore capital infusion in better-performing banks under the watchlist of the RBI to take them out of the Prompt Corrective Action (PCA). Under the Rs 2.11 lakh crore bank recapitalisation plan, better-performing banks will be given capital to meet the RBI-mandated CRAR of 9%, NPA of 6% and other parameters. 
Post Offices Became Hi Tech - Post Office has become Hi Tech with the launch of Department of Post (DOP) Internet Banking services. Now eBanking facility will also facilitate the users of Recurring Deposit (RD) Accounts, Public Provident Fund (PPF) Accounts, Time Deposit (TD) Accounts and National Savings Certificate (NSC) Accounts.
Strategy for New India @75- The NITI Aayog unveiled a strategy document with an aim to accelerate growth to 8 per cent and propel the country towards a USD 4-trillion economy by 2022-23 and USD 5-trillion economy by 2030. The NITI Aayog released ‘Strategy for New India @75’ which defines clear objectives for 2022-23. Independent India will turn 75 on August 15, 2022.
Indian Note Banned in Nepal - To check money laundering and misuse of high denomination Indian currency, Nepal has announced the ban of currency notes of Rs 2,000, Rs 500 and Rs 200 denominations. The decision will adversely affect Nepalese labourers working in India as well as Indian tourists visiting Nepal.
Swapna Barman - State Bank of India has roped in Asian Games gold medalist Swapna Barman as brand ambassador for its digital app YONO. YONO, the bank's digital platform that makes both lifestyle and banking available through a single app.
National Pension Scheme - Cabinet raised the government’s contribution to National Pension Scheme (NPS) to 14 per cent of basic salary from the current 10 per cent. Minimum employee contribution will, however, remain at 10 per cent. The Cabinet also approved tax incentives under 80C of the Income Tax Act for employees’ contribution to the extent of 10 per cent. Presently, the government and employees contribute 10 per cent of basic salary each to NPS.
Strategic Sale of REC - Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved sale of the government’s 52.63 per cent stake in Rural Electrification Corporation (REC) Ltd to Power Finance Corporation for an estimated Rs 15,000 crore. The government held 57.99 per cent stake in REC.
Top Recipient of Remittances - India will retain its position as the world’s top recipient of remittances this year with its diaspora sending a whopping USD 80 billion back home, the World Bank said in a report ‘Migration and Development Brief’. India is followed by China (USD 67 billion).
Loan Recovery Improved - Banks have seen a significant improvement in recovery of stressed assets helped by the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) and amendments in the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interests (SARFAESI) Act. In the fiscal ended March 2018, banks recovered Rs 40,400 crore worth of bad loans as against Rs 38,500 crore recovered in FY17.
NPA Dropped in PSB - Non-performing assets (NPAs) of public sector banks (PSBs) dropped by Rs 23,860 crore in the first half of the current fiscal from a peak of Rs 9.62 lakh crore in March 2018, in a sign that the worst is behind, according to financial services secretary Rajiv Kumar.
Loan For Microfinance - India’s institutional framework to support microfinance would get a boost with Reserve Bank of India clearing a proposal to dig in an existing Rs 1000-crore corpus for funding microlenders. Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) will now use the money to offer soft loans to MFIs on a condition that end borrowers should get loans at 15-17% rate, which is significantly lower than the prevailing 20-22% market rate.
Amritsar Kolkata Industrial Corridor - Amritsar Kolkata Industrial Corridor (AKIC) Project planned by the Government of India covers seven States including Punjab.  In consultation with State Government, Rajpura- Patiala has been identified as an Integrated Manufacturing Cluster (IMC) for development in the State of Punjab.
ATMs Declined - The number of ATMs in the country declined marginally by 1,300 to 2.07 lakh in the financial year 2017-18. The total number of ATMs declined from 208,354 in FY17 to 207,052 due to several reasons. The central bank in its annual report on ‘Trend and Progress of Banking in India’ said that ATMs were closed ‘primarily’ due to branch rationalisation by a few public sector banks. 
New Norms for E-Commerce Firms - Tightening norms for e-commerce firms like Flipkart and Amazon, the government took host of steps and barred them from selling products of the companies in which they have stake. The commerce and industry ministry also prohibited e-commerce companies from entering into an agreement for exclusive sale of products. Cash back provided by the group companies of marketplace entity to buyers shall be fair and non-discriminatory.
Fraud Cases in Banks - According to Reserve Bank of India, between 2015 and 2017, private lender ICICI Bank penalized the highest number of employees for defrauding bank assets in the last three year out of 60 scheduled commercial banks operating in India. It is followed by State Bank of India and Punjab National Bank.
ESAF Small Finance Bank - ESAF small finance bank has got RBI approval to operate as a scheduled bank. ESAF microfinance institution, started in 1992, was one among the ten applicants to receive approval from RBI to start banking operations in 2016.
Fiscal Deficit Widened - The fiscal situation of the Narendra Modi government has worsened with the fiscal deficit in the first eight months (April-November) of the financial year 2018-19 hitting 115% of the budget estimates. The government has set the fiscal deficit target at 3.3% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). 
GST Council Reduced Rates - GST Council cut rates on 23 commonly used goods and services, including TV screens, movie tickets and power banks. The annual revenue implication of the rate cuts would be Rs 5,500 crore. The council rationalised the 28 per cent slab by bringing down the tax rate on seven items in the highest tax bracket, thereby leaving only 28 items in the slab. The new tax rates will come into effect from January 1, 2019.
Loan Waiver in Rajasthan - After Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot announced farm loan waiver taken from cooperative banks and up to Rs. 2 lakh from other banks. The state government will bear a burden of Rs. 18,000 crore for the waiver.
Loan Waiver in Assam - The Assam government has approved farm loan waiver to the tune of Rs 600 crore which will benefit around eight lakh farmers of the state. Government will write off 25 per cent loan of farmers up to a maximum of Rs 25,000 of all farm debts. The waiver will be for all the loans taken through Kisan Credit Card (KCC) and from PSU banks.
Plan To Create 50 Lakh Jobs - Government plans to introduce an ambitious industry-linked mega apprenticeship program for students of humanities and other non-technical courses. The three ministries including Human Resource Development, Skill Development and Labour have come together to impart training to undergraduates to increase their chances of getting employed across sectors. In the first phase beginning FY20, government targets to enroll 10 lakh students. By 2022, nearly 50 lakh students would be covered.
Loan Waiver in Madhya Pradesh - Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath signed the file for waiving loans of up to Rs 2 lakh of farmers. The order stated, "Madhya Pradesh Government has taken a decision to write off short-term crop loan of eligible farmers up to the limit of Rs two lakh, as on March 31, 2018, from nationalised and cooperative banks."
Loan Waiver in Chhattisgarh - Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel announced to waive farm loans to the tune of Rs 6,100 crore of more than 16 lakh farmers and also decided to set up a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the deadly maoist attack in Bastar. Baghel said it has been decided to waive off all short-term loans availed by farmers from cooperative and rural development banks.
Dynamic Limit For External Commercial Borrowing - RBI has decided to have a rule-based dynamic limit for outstanding stock of external commercial borrowings (ECB) at 6.5% of GDP at current market prices. Based on GDP figures for March 31, 2018, ‘the soft limit works out to $160 billion. The outstanding stock of ECB as on September 30, 2018 was $126.29 billion.
Data Localization Norms - The RBI in April issued a new regulation, which came into effect from October 16, requiring payments companies to store all information about transactions involving Indians solely on computers in the country. Mastercard said all new Indian transaction data is being stored at its technology centre in Pune as required by the RBI directive on data localisation.
Recapitalisation Plan of Public Sector Banks - Government of India announced recapitalisation of Public Sector Banks (PSBs) to the tune of Rs. 2.11 lakh crore in October 2017. Rs. 88,139 crore was infused by the Government in PSBs during financial year (FY) 2017-18 and provision of Rs. 65,000 crore has been made in the budget for the current financial year for infusion. Since the recapitalisation announcement till November 2018, PSBs have been recapitalised to the tune of Rs. 1,28,861 crore through infusion and mobilisation of capital from the market.
Base Year Revised - The Central Statistics Office (CSO), Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation has revised the Base Year of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) from 2010=100 to 2012=100.
Fine on Indian Bank - The Reserve Bank of India has imposed a fine of Rs 1 crore on Indian Bank for violating cybersecurity norms. The contravention is with regard to RBI's directions on Frauds - Classification and Reporting by Commercial Banks.
ADB Projected GDP Growth - The Asian Development Bank retained India’s economic growth forecast at 7.3 per cent for the current fiscal and 7.6 per cent for 2019-20, despite downside risks posed by stress in the non-banking sector, limited fiscal space as well as escalating trade tensions.
Plan for USD 5 Trillion Economy - The Ministry of Commerce & Industry is creating an action-oriented plan which will highlight specific sector level interventions to bolster India’s march towards becoming a USD 5 trillion economy before 2025. The focused plans will be on boosting services sector contribution to USD 3 trillion, manufacturing to USD 1 trillion and Agriculture to USD 1 trillion.
HCL Technologies - The country’s third largest software exporter, HCL Technologies, will buy seven software platforms from US-based IBM Corp for $1.8 billion, marking the largest purchase ever by an Indian IT services firm. The all-cash deal entails software in areas including security, marketing and collaboration solutions.
Abu Dhabi Investment Authority - One of the largest sovereign funds in the world, the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority will invest $50 billion into India, especially into infrastructure and food processing capacity.
Penalty Against Reliance Industries - The government has accused Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries (RIL) and its partners of “unjust enrichment” of over $1.729 billion by siphoning gas from deposits they had no right to exploit. On government’s petition, the Delhi High Court sought a response from RIL and UK-based BP Plc and Niko Resources of Canada. It began on November 4, 2016, when the oil ministry slapped a demand of $1.47 billion on the RIL-BP-Niko for “unfairly” producing natural gas belonging to ONGC. RIL’s KG-D6 block and ONGC’s blocks are adjoining in the Bay of Bengal.
Current Account Deficit Widened - India’s current account saw a deficit of $19.1 billion or 2.9% of the gross domestic product (GDP) in July-September quarter (Q2FY19) of this fiscal — the deficit stood at 2.4% in the previous quarter and a benign 1.1% in the year-ago quarter.
Oil and Gas Fields For Sale - The Union Government on December 3, 2018 constituted a six-member committee headed by NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar to look at selling of 149 small and marginal oil and gas fields of state-owned the Oil and Natural Gas Corporatio (ONGC) and Oil India Limited (OIL) to private and foreign companies to boost domestic output.
Moody's Report on Indian Economy - Moody's estimated India's real gross domestic product (GDP) for the current financial year and next fiscal to grow at 7.2% and 7.4%, respectively. Global rating agency stated that the growth will be driven by investment growth and strong consumption.
Merger of HUL And GSKCH India - FMCG major Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) announced that its board has approved the merger with GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare (GSKCH India).

 GDP Growth Estimates
2018-19
Central Statistics Office (First Half)
7.60%
RBI
7.40%
Economic Survey
7 - 7.5 %
World Bank
7.30%
International Monetary Fund
7.30%
Asian Development Fund
7.30%

International News

Nepal Imposed Limits On Indian Currency - Nepal imposed a monthly limit on the amount of Indian currency its citizen can spend in India. Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) said a visiting Nepali citizen would not be able to spend more than Rs. 1 lakh every month while paying for goods and services in India and that the decision was taken to deal with the current account deficit of Nepal.
US-Mexico-Canada Agreement - US President Donald Trump, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, and Canadian PM Justin Trudeau signed the new US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) which will replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). USMCA will govern over a trillion dollars worth of trade between the three countries. They signed an authorization for the deal in Buenos Aires on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit.
Partial Shutdown in USA - Democrats refused President Trump’s demand for $5 billion to start erecting his cherished Mexican border wall saying it was unnecessary, resulting in Congress being unable to pass a spending bill that would have kept the government fully funded and functioning. Without the money, numerous federal agencies including those related to homeland security, tax collection, law enforcement and transportation shut down.
Facebook is Developing Its Own Cryptocurrency - Facebook is developing a cryptocurrency ‘stablecoin’ that will allow users to transfer money on its instant messaging app WhatsApp. Facebook is planning to target India’s remittance market through WhatsApp. Last year, India received $ 69 billion as remittances from its diaspora.
China Launched Satellite For Broadband Services - China launched its first communication satellite to provide broadband internet services worldwide in an apparent bid to rival Google and other international firms. The satellite is the first in the Hongyun project planned by China Aerospace Science and Industry Corp (CASIC). The Hongyun project aims to build a space-based communications network to provide broadband internet connectivity to users around the world.
US Federal Reserve Raised Interest Rate - US Federal Reserve has raised interest rate for the fourth time this year. The quarter-point increase, to a range of 2.25 per cent to 2.5 per cent, lifted the Fed's benchmark rate to its highest point since 2008. US central bank's move came despite President Donald Trump's attacks in recent weeks on its rate hikes. He had complained that the moves are threatening the economy.
Financial Action Task Force (FATF) - Israel became a full member of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an international body set up to combat money laundering, terrorist financing and other threats to the international financial system. Israel has now taken its place alongside 37 other members.
Financial Assistance to Bhutan - PM Narendra Modi announced that India would contribute Rs 4,500 crore to Bhutan’s 12th five-year plan which will end in 2022. A transitional Trade Support Facility of Rs 400 crore over a period of five years was also announced. Work on the Mangdechhu project would soon be completed. Mangdechhu is a 720 mw hydroelectric project on the Mangdechhu river in central Bhutan. Ground station being built by ISRO in Bhutan will soon be ready.
Qatar will Quit OPEC - Qatar has announced its decision to leave the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) from January next year and focus more on the production of natural gas. Qatar is the world's largest exporter of LPG.
US Will Withdraw Troops From Afghanistan - U.S. President Donald Trump has decided to pull a significant number of troops from Afghanistan. The move stunned and dismayed diplomats and officials in Kabul who are intensifying a push to end the 17-year conflict with the Taliban.
British PM Won No Confidence Motion - British Prime Minister Theresa May has won a vote of confidence in her leadership of the Conservative Party. She got the support of 200 MPs while 117 MPs voted against her. The confidence vote was triggered by 48 of her MPs, who are angry at her Brexit policy. They said that her policy has betrayed the 2016 referendum result.
Google Online Shopping - Google has unveiled Google Shopping, a dedicated search engine intended to provide an immersive and improved online shopping experience. Along with finding products, Google Shopping allows users to filter through offers and review prices across multiple retailers.
Political Crises in Sri Lanka - The Supreme Court of Sri Lanka ruled that President Sirisena’s dissolution of Parliament was illegal. The crisis erupted on October 26, when Mr. Sirisena sacked incumbent Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, and abruptly replaced him with former President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Later Parliament of Sri Lanka passed no confidence motion against Mahinda Rajapaksa and also passed a motion expressing confidence in Ranil Wickremesinghe to function as the Prime Minister.  President Sirisena refused to reappoint Mr. Wickremsinghe as PM.
TARGET Instant Payment Settlement (TIPS) - The European Central Bank launched a new system aimed at letting banks settle payments instantly across Europe. The ECB's TARGET Instant Payment Settlement (TIPS) system will let people and companies in Europe transfer euros to each other within seconds and regardless of the opening hours of their local bank. 
India and the UAE signed Currency Swap Agreement - India and the UAE signed two agreements, including one on currency swap, as External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj held exhaustive discussions with her counterpart Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan to step up cooperation in areas like trade, security and defence. Swaraj arrived UAE on a two-day visit.
US and China Agreed to Stop Trade War - The US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping have agreed not to impose new tariffs from January 1, 2019, and pledged to continue negotiations to seek a way out of the ongoing trade war. Trump has also agreed to hold off on raising existing tariffs on 200 billion Dollars for 90 days, pending new talks. US tariffs on 200 billion Dollars of Chinese goods were scheduled to increase from 10 per cent to 25 per cent starting January 1, 2019.
Digital Museum in Abu Dhabi - External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will inaugurate a digital museum in Abu Dhabi showcasing the life, works and philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi and the founder of modern UAE Shaikh Zayed. The Gandhi-Zayed Digital Museum is part of the celebrations to mark 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and centenary celebrations of the birth of Shaikh Zayed. Swaraj will be on a two-day visit to the UAE from December 3-4, where she will co-chair the 12th session of the India-UAE Joint Commission Meeting for Economic and Technical Cooperation.
UAE Resumed Diplomatic Relation with Syria - United Arab Emirates has resumed its diplomatic service at Damascus in Syria after six years of suspension signaling a thaw in the relations between the two countries, as also with the Arab world. UAE had closed its Embassy in the early years of the Syrian conflict.
Japan Withdrawal from International Whaling Commission - Japan announced its decision to withdraw from the International Whaling Commission and said that it will resume commercial whaling from July 2019. The withdrawal will come into effect by June 30, 2019.
Palestine - Palestine would apply for full state membership at the United Nations in January. Palestine would file the application to upgrade Palestine's status from an observer state to a full member state to the UN Security Council. 
India Ports Global Ltd - An Indian company India Ports Global Ltd has taken charge of operating the Iranian Shaheed Behesti port of Chabahar. The crucial handover took place during the first meeting of the follow-up committee for implementation of the trilateral Chabahar Agreement of India, Afghanistan and Iran.
New Capital of Burundi - Burundi declared the small central city of Gitega the country’s new political capital. Previous capital Bujumbura, would in future function solely as the country’s economic centre.
Tsunami in Indonesia - In Indonesia, the death toll from a volcano-triggered tsunami has risen to 222, with more than 800 people injured. A tsunami killed people on the Indonesian islands of Java and Sumatra following an underwater landslide believed caused by the erupting Anak Krakatau volcano.
Panda Bonds - Pakistan's cabinet has approved the issuance of first-ever renminbi-denominated 'Panda Bonds' to raise loans from China's capital markets, as the country moved a step forward to give the Chinese currency status at par with the US dollar.
India and Japan Signed Loan Agreement - India and Japan have signed Exchange of Notes and Loan Agreements on Japan’s Official Development Assistance Loan to India - Chennai Metro Project (Phase 2) (I) - Japanese Yen (JPY) 75.519 billion, Japan-India Cooperative Actions towards Sustainable Development Goals - JPY 15.000 billion and Dairy Development - JPY 14.978 billion.
Penalty on Uber - France's data protection agency had fined the US ride-hailing group Uber 400,000 euros over a 2016 data breach that exposed the personal data of some 57 million clients and drivers worldwide.
India will Overtake UK in 2019 - Global firm PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers) said that India is all set to overtake the United Kingdom in 2019 to emerge as the world’s fifth largest economy. Interestingly, since 2014, with a consistent GDP 7% plus growth, India has overtaken France, Brazil, Italy, and Russia. 
EU For Low Car Emissions - EU is going to reduce new car emissions by 37.5 per cent by 2030. The EU member countries and the European Parliament have struck an ambitious deal, under which Brussels would help the bloc meet its commitments under the Paris climate accord.
India-ROK Joint Commission Meeting - External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Foreign Affairs Minister of South Korea Kang Kyung-wha co-chaired the 9th India-ROK (Republic of Korea) Joint Commission meeting. Ms. Kyung-wha arrived in New Delhi on a two-day visit to India. Both sides agreed to raise the quantum of the bilateral trade to 50 billion dollars by the year 2030.
Oil Import From Iran - India will use escrow accounts of five Iranian banks held with UCO Bank Ltd to deposit money for oil purchases from Iran to overcome U.S. sanctions. Iran will use part of the deposits for purchasing essential goods from India. The payment mechanism will allow India to continue oil purchases despite US sanctions.
Global Compact on Refugees - The UN member states voted in favour of the Global Compact on Refugees, affirming international solidarity and cooperation for refugee protection and host community development. The Global Compact on refugees received 181 votes in favour in the 193-member assembly. The United States and Hungary were the only two nations that voted against the agreement.
Bankruptcy Case Against Vijay Mallya in UK - UK-based law firm which had won a landmark case for the 13 banks led by State Bank of India confirmed that their bankruptcy petition against Vijay Mallya has been transferred to the insolvency list in London's High Court of Justice for a hearing in the first half of 2019.
Japan's Plan to Become Regional Power - Japan will accelerate spending on advanced stealth fighters, long-range missiles and other equipment over the next five years to support US forces facing China's military in the Western Pacific. The plans are the clearest indication yet of Japan's ambition to become a regional power as a military build-up by China.
Postage Stamps by India and South Africa - The Union Cabinet has been apprised of Joint Issue of Postage Stamps by India and South Africa on the theme “125th Year of Mahatma Gandhi’s Pietermaritzburg Station Incident & Birth Centenary of Nelson Mandela”. The commemorative postage stamps depict images of Mahatma Gandhi of India and Nelson Mandela of South Africa.
Single-Use Plastic Banned in New Zealand - In New Zealand retailers will no longer be able to sell or give away single-use plastic shopping bags from 1 July 2019. New Zealand has recently become a signatory to the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, a global pledge to address the root causes of plastic pollution.
India and Maldives signed MoU - India and Maldives signed four agreements on various fields in New Delhi. The agreements were signed after delegation-level talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Maldives President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih in India. India announced a $1.4 billion package for the Maldives to meet its immediate budgetary as well as some medium-term requirements.
Floating Nuclear Power Plant - Akademik Lomonosov, the world's first "floating" nuclear power plant (FNPP) for installation in remote areas, has been started and brought to 10% of its capacity, Russian state-run atomic energy corporation Rosatom announced.
Global Debt At All Time High - The International Monetary Fund has revealed in a report that the global debt has reached an all-time high of 184 trillion US dollars, which is the equivalent to 225 per cent of the world GDP in 2017. The report states that nations like the United States, China and Japan account for more than half of the debt.
ADB Loan for Assam - The Asian Development Bank and the Government of India signed a $60 Million Loan Agreement in New Delhi to continue financing riverbank protection works, and renovation of flood embankments in critically flood-prone areas along the Brahmaputra River in Assam.
SIPRI Report of Arms Deal - Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) announced that Russia has emerged as the world's second-largest arms producer after the United States. Russia surpassed Britain, which had held that spot since 2002.
International Universal Health Coverage Day - International Universal Health Coverage Day (UHC Day) is celebrated globally on 12 December. The theme for the 2018 UHC Day is - "Unite for Universal Health Coverage: Now is the Time for Collective Action". 
India and Russia pledged to enhance Parliamentary Diplomacy - India and Russia have pledged to enhance “parliamentary diplomacy” between the two countries. The decision was taken in a meeting between Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and Chairman of the State Duma of Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation Vyacheslav Volodin. The deliberations were the fifth meeting of the Russia-India Inter-Parliamentary Commission.
ADB Loan For Tamil Nadu - Centre and the Asian Development Bank signed a loan agreement of 31 million dollars in New Delhi to develop Tourism and boost Jobs in Tamil Nadu. Project is expected to improve the tourism infrastructure in Tamil Nadu and also help the State in preserving the natural and cultural heritage. 
Ukraine Ended Friendship Agreement With Russia - Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a bill ending the two-decade-old treaty on friendship, cooperation and partnership between Ukraine and Russia. The treaty will be terminated on April 1, 2019 amid rising tensions between the two countries.
UAE Increased Women’s Representation - The United Arab Emirates has decided to double the current percentage of women's representation in the Federal National Council from 22.5 per cent to 50 per cent in the coming parliamentary term.
Half Global Population is Online - For the first time, more than half of the global population is online. The UN agency - International Telecommunication Union said that by the end of this year, 51.2 per cent (3.9 billion) of people around the world will be using the Internet. The report also showed that the number of mobile-cellular telephone is now greater than the global population.
UN Global Counter-Terrorism Coordination Compact - The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres launched a new framework titled ‘UN Global Counter-Terrorism Coordination Compact’ to combat international terrorism. The framework is an agreement between the UN chief, 36 organisational entities, the International Criminal Police Organisation (INTERPOL) and the World Customs Organisation to better serve the needs of member states.
Luxembourg - Luxembourg is set to become the first country in the world to make all public transport free, implementing the move in 2020. The move is aimed at addressing environmental issues and the problem of traffic congestion. 
India and France Signed Pact - The Union Cabinet approves a pact between India and France in the field of energy efficiency and conservation. The pact involves knowledge exchange and cooperation in the nature of technical assistance only.
Index of Most Powerful Passport - The UAE now has the world's most powerful passport. The index is compiled by Arton Capital.  India was ranked 140th in the list. 
Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty - United States warned Russia that it will withdraw from a major Cold War treaty - 1987 limiting mid-range nuclear arms, if Moscow does not dismantle missiles within 60 days.
Climate Action Investment Fund - The World Bank unveiled USD 200 billion in climate action investment for 2021 to 2025, thus, doubling its current five-year funding. The move coincides with a UN climate summit COP24 in Katowice, Poland. The breakdown of 200 billion dollars would comprise approximately 100 billion in direct finance from the World Bank. Around one-third of the remaining funding will come from two World Bank Group agencies with the rest private capital mobilised by the World Bank Group.
India and Spain Agreed to Swap Sentenced Prisoners - India and Spain have agreed to swap each other's sentenced prisoners, with New Delhi giving an assurance to Madrid that those sent back home will not be given capital punishment.
Orphanage Trafficking - Australia has become the first country in the world to recognise 'orphanage trafficking' as a form of modern slavery. Children from smaller countries are recruited in orphanages in the West for the purpose of profit through foreign aid.

Scheme / Programme / Policy / Mission

Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana - The government is likely to achieve its 100 per cent household electrification target in the country ahead of Republic Day as it has already energised 2.39 crore out of the targeted 2.49 crore households under Rs 16,320 crore Saubhagya scheme. The Centre had launched Saubhagya scheme in September 2017, to achieve the goal of universal household electrification in the country by March 31, 2019. 
Agriculture Export Policy - Seeking to double agricultural export to USD 60 billion by 2022, the Union Cabinet approved Agriculture Export Policy, 2018 for the farm sector that imposes no restrictions on export of all organic and processed products. However, export policy for primary agricultural products, like onion, would reviewed periodically on a case-to-case basis depending on price-supply situation. Agricultural exports are currently estimated at USD 30 billion.
Ujjwala Sanitary Napkin - Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan launched the Ujjwala Sanitary Napkin initiative in Bhubaneswar, which will expand women’s access to hygiene products and provide them with employment opportunities in every district of the state. The Central scheme will be a counter to the Odisha government’s Khushi scheme, in which sanitary napkins are provided free of cost to female students of government schools.
Tandarust Punjab - As part of 'Tandarust Punjab', all government hospitals across the state will provide blood and blood components free of cost to patients from New Year's Day. 'Tandarust Punjab' mission has been envisaged by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh to take care of the state's air quality, water quality and safe food, among others.
Atal Ayushman Uttarakhand Yojana - Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat launched the ‘Atal Ayushman Uttarakhand Yojana’ making the hill state first in the country to offer universal health coverage. Under the scheme, each household in the state will be able to avail medical treatment of up to Rs 5 lakh annually. 
GoM on Stressed Power Projects - The government has constituted a Group of Ministers (GoM) headed by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to vet the recommendations of a high-level panel on stressed power projects. The panel, headed by Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha, had submitted its report in November 2018. The other members of the GOM are Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari, Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, Railways Minister Piyush Goyal and Power Minister R K Singh.
SAMPANN - Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched comprehensive pension management software SAMPANN to facilitate pensioners of the telecom department. SAMPANN, an acronym for System for Accounting and Management of Pension, will help in timely disbursement of pensions.
Ujjwala Yojana Expanded – Union Cabinet approved expanding the scope of Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana to cover poor families not having LPG connections and not covered under the existing beneficiary categories. Under the scheme, the government provides a subsidy of Rs 1,600 to state-owned fuel retailers for every free LPG gas connection. 
First Military Flight on Bio-Fuel - The Air Force flew its first military flight, Russian-origin AN-32 transport plane, using blended bio-jet fuel with 10 per cent bio-jet fuel, in Bengaluru. This fuel is made from Jatropha oil sourced from Chattisgarh Biodiesel Development Authority (CBDA) and then processed at CSIR-IIP (Indian Institute of Petroleum), Dehradun.
Mission Indradhanush - India’s flagship immunisation campaign - ‘Mission Indradhanush’ - has been selected as one of the 12 best practices globally and is set to be featured in a special issue of the British Medical Journal. The special issue of the journal is being brought out on the occasion of the fourth Partners Forum conference, to be held by India Government in New Delhi.
Witness Protection Scheme - The Supreme Court approved the Witness Protection Scheme 2018 and directed the Central and State Governments to enforce the same. The scheme will become ‘law’ under Article 141/142 of the Constitution till the enactment of parliamentary and state legislations.
Mukhyamantri Tirth Yatra Yojana - Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal launched the 'Mukhyamantri Tirth Yatra Yojana' which offers free travel packages for senior citizens from Delhi to five religious circuits. 1,100 senior citizens from every constituency of Delhi will be able to avail this facility at one go.
Adopt A Heritage Scheme - Ten monuments have been adopted under the central government's 'Adopt A Heritage: Apni Dharohar, Apni Pehchaan' scheme, the ministry of culture informed the Parliament. The project had come under scrutiny after the Red Fort was adopted by cement manufacturers Dalmia Group.
Cabinet Approved Two AIIMS - The Union cabinet approved setting up of two new All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Madurai, Tamil Nadu at a cost of Rs 1,264 crore and Bibinagar, Telangana at a cost of Rs 1,028 crore. The AIIMS will be set up under Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY). Before this, the Centre had announced setting up of 13 more AIIMS.
Top Performer in PMMVY - Andhra Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh were the top three performing states under the maternity benefit programme Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana (PMMVY). PMMVY is a centrally-sponsored scheme under which the cost-sharing ratio between the Centre, states and the Union Territories with the legislation is 60:40.
Odisha Launched Scheme for Farmers - Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik announced the Rs 10,000-crore scheme for the overall development of farmers in the state. The Odisha cabinet approved the Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme for the development of farmers in the state.
Asiatic Lion Conservation Project - The Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change launched the “Asiatic Lion Conservation Project” to protect and conserve the population of Asiatic Lion and its associated ecosystem.
Kisan Suvidha Mobile Application - Government has developed Kisan Suvidha mobile application to facilitate dissemination of information to farmers on the critical parameters viz., Weather; Market Prices;  Plant Protection. Farmers can download Kisan Suvidha app through Google Play Store. 
ENSURE- National Livestock Mission - Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Shri Radha Mohan Singh launched a portal ENSURE- National Livestock Mission-EDEG developed by NABARD. Under the Mission’s component called Entrepreneurship Development and Employment Generation (EDEG), subsidy payment for activities related to poultry, small ruminants, pigs etc. through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) goes directly to the beneficiary’s account.
FAME India Scheme - In order to promote manufacturing of electric and hybrid vehicle technology and to ensure sustainable growth of the same, Department of Heavy Industry is implementing FAME-India Scheme- Phase-I [Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid &) Electric Vehicles in India] from 1st April 2015. The scheme has been extended upto 31st March, 2019.
Project SMART - The state government launched an ambitious project State of Maharashtra Agribusiness and Rural Transformation (SMART) in 10,000 villages with an objective to achieve sustainable farming within the next three years. The project SMART will be assisted by the World Bank.
New Site Included in PRASAD Scheme - The Centre included Gangotri and Yamunotri in Uttarakhand, Amarkantak in Madhya Pradesh and Parasnath in Jharkhand under a central scheme to develop pilgrimage and heritage destinations in the country. With the new additions, the number of sites under the Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive (PRASAD) launched by the ministry in 2014-15 has now become 41 in 25 states.
PEETHA Scheme Launched by Odisha Government - Odisha Government launched yet another initiative, Peoples Empowerment - Enabling Transparency and Accountability of Odisha Initiatives (PEETHA).  The PEETHA is a sub-scheme of the Odisha government's flagship Ama Gaon Ama Bikas Yojana. 
Ganga Museum - National Mission for Clean Ganga organised a two-day international workshop on 'Developing a Ganga Museum Concept: Exchanging Experiences and Ideas between India and Europe' in Delhi. Museum will be part of Namami Gange Programme.

Defence / Exercise / Space

Gsat-11 Satellite Launched - India’s heaviest satellite Gsat-11 weighing 5,854 kg was finally launched. Arianespace’s Ariane-5 rocket carrying Gsat-11 and a geo satellite of South Korea lifted off at French Guiana. The Ariane 5 also lifted off South Korea’s GEO-KOMPSAT-2A satellites. GSAT-11 will boost the broadband connectivity to rural and inaccessible Gram Panchayats in the country under the Bharat Net Project.
GSAT 7A Satellites Launched - The GSLV F 11 carrying 2250 kilogram GSAT 7A was successfully launched from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh by ISRO. GSAT-7A is meant for augmenting the existing communication capabilities of satellites utilised by the Indian Air Force.
64 Satellite Launched by Space X - Elon Musk-led US space agency Space X launched India’s first privately built satellite ExseedSAT 1 along with 63 other satellites (Total 64 Satellites) from 17 countries, setting a new US record. ExseedSAT 1 is an open radio transponder that works on ham radio frequencies. Space X’s Falcon 9 reusable rocket blasted off from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The Falcon 9 rocket carried 15 micro-satellites and 49 CubeSats belonging to 34 different clients including public, private and university sources from 17 different countries across the world including South Korea, France and Kazakhstan.
Agni-V Missile Test Fired - India successfully test-fired nuclear-capable long-range ballistic missile Agni-V. The missile was launched from a canister on a road mobile-launcher from Dr. Abdul Kalam Island off Odisha. This is the third successful launch of Agni-V this year. Agni-V is an Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) with a strike range of over 5,000 km and can reach most parts of China. 
Agni-IV Missile Test Fired - India successfully test-fired its nuclear-capable long-range Inter Continental Ballistic Missile Agni-IV, with a strike range of 4,000 km. The strategic surface-to-surface missile was flight tested from the Integrated Test Range (ITR) at Dr Abdul Kalam Island off Odisha coast.
Russia Tested Hypersonic Missile - Russian President Vladimir Putin hailed final tests of a hypersonic missile, which he had earlier said would render existing missile systems obsolete. The hypersonic missile could fly at 20 times the speed of sound and manoeuvre up and down, meaning that it could breach defence systems.
Ground Station for Glonass - Even as work on having India's own navigation system using the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) or NavIC constellation of satellites is going on in full swing, the Indian Space Research Organisation's (Isro) is gearing up to host a ground station for the Russian version of global positioning system-Global Navigation Satellite System (Glonass) in Bengaluru.
Indra 18 Exercise - The 10th edition of joint exercise ‘Indra 18’ between the Indian Army and Russian Army concluded recently at Babina military station Jhansi in Uttar Pradesh. The aim of the exercise was to develop interoperability between two armies to understand transnational terrorism and conduct a joint operation under the United Nations.
Aviaindra Exercise - The Indian and Russian air forces will begin a 12-day war game in Jodhpur with an aim to enhance their operational coordination. The exercise - Aviaindra - will be unique as the Russian Air Force will not bring its assets and will take part in the drill using Indian platforms.
China Launched Rover for Moon - China launched a rover destined to land on the far side of the moon, a global first that would boost Beijing's ambitions to become a space superpower. The Chang'e-4 lunar probe mission - named after the moon goddess in Chinese mythology - launched on a Long March 3B rocket from the southwestern Xichang launch centre.
SHINYUU Maitri-18 - The Japanese Air Self Defence Force (JASDF) is in India for a bilateral air exercise SHINYUU Maitri-18 with Indian Air Force from 03-07 Dec 18 at Agra. The theme of the exercise is joint Mobility/Humanitarian Assistance & Disaster Relief (HADR) on Transport aircraft.
Deep Submergence Rescue Vehicle - The Indian Navy inducted its first Deep Submergence Rescue Vehicle (DSRV) System at the Naval Dockyard in Mumbai. DSRV is used to rescue crew members stranded in submarines that get disabled. The Indian Navy joins a select group of naval forces in the world that boasts of this niche capability.
CROSSBOW-18 - The Combined Guided Weapon Firing exercise 'CROSSBOW-18' ended successfully at the Suryalanka Air Force Station in Andhra Pradesh. The 11-day exercise, conducted under the aegis of the Southern Air Command, saw various Surface-to-Air Missile systems like the indigenously developed Akash, Spyder, OSA-AK-M and IGLA carrying out drills and live firing for the first time on manoeuvrable aerial targets.
Clean Sea – 2018 - The Indian Coast Guard has conducted the Regional Level Marine Oil Pollution Response Exercise titled ‘Clean Sea - 2018’ at sea off Port Blair.
Drone Policy - From December 1, flying drones has become easier as the new Directorate General of Civil Aviation’s drone policy comes into effect. Now nano drones can start flying in the country with immediate effect, for drones of micro size and above categories, the operators would be required to register on the Digital Sky portal.
Brahmos - Defence Ministry approved military procurement worth Rs 3,000 crore. The procurement includes Brahmos supersonic cruise missiles for Navy’s two stealth frigates and Armoured Recovery Vehicles (ARVs) for the Army’s Arjun main battle tanks.

Committee / Report / Index / Ranking

Committee on Economic Capital Framework - Reserve Bank of India, in consultation with the government, has set up a six-member committee to review the economic capital framework of the central bank. Former RBI Governor Bimal Jalan will be the committee’s chairman and former Deputy Governor Rakesh Mohan deputy chairman. The other members are Economic Affairs Secretary Subash Chandra Garg, RBI Deputy Governor N.S. Vishwanathan and two board members of the RBI — Bharat Doshi and Sudhir Mankad. The committee would submit its report within 90 days from the date of its first meeting.
Bibek Debroy Committee - The Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister (EAC-PM) has constituted a Logistics Development Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr. Bibek Debroy, Chairman of EAC-PM to assess key challenges and suggest reforms in logistics development and associated commerce.
Highest Aviation Safety Ranking - The US regulator Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has retained the highest aviation safety ranking for India. The Federal Aviation Administration carried out an audit of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) in July 2018. FAA formally confirmed that India's International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) rating remains 'Category 1'. 
Global Gender Gap Report - The World Economic Forum released the Global Gender Gap Report 2018, reviewing 149 countries on the basis of their progress towards gender parity. This year, the Gender Gap Index was topped by Iceland for the 10th consecutive year. India was ranked 108th in the Global Gender Gap Index 2018, same as it was ranked in 2017.
Climate Change Performance Index - The Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) 2018 was released on the sidelines of a UN summit on global warming. As per the Index, Sweden has topped the list while India was on 11th position. 

Books and Authors

India Unmade: How Narendra Modi Broke the Economy - In his new book titled ‘India Unmade: How Narendra Modi Broke the Economy’, former Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha has criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his policy decisions.
Changing India - Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh released his book titled "Changing India". In the book, the Congress leader narrated his journey from an economist to a politician and shared anecdotes from his life.
Naseer-Ka-Najeer— Phir Ek Din - Bollywood actor Naseeruddin Shah released his book ‘ Naseer-Ka-Najeer— Phir Ek Din,’ a Hindi translation of his book ‘And Then One Day’.
Blue Waters Ahoy! - Admiral Sunil Lanba, Chief of the Naval Staff, released a book titled ‘Blue Waters Ahoy!’ – chronicling the Indian Navy’s History from 2001-10. The book has been authored by Vice Admiral Anup Singh.
The Republican Ethic - The Vice President of India Shri M.Venkaiah Naidu released Compilation of Selected speeches of the President, Ram Nath Kovind titled, “The Republican Ethic” in English and “Loktantra ke Swar” in Hindi at a function in Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi.
‘Early Indians’ - The book titled “Early Indians: The Story of Our Ancestors and Where We Came From” written by Tony Joseph was released. The book talks about the migration of the First Indians also known as ‘Aryans’ who arrived here 65,000 years ago.
Important Days
World AIDS Day - World AIDS Day is designated on 1 December every year. The theme for the World AIDS Day 2018 is “Know Your Status”. Indian government is committed to achieve the target of making India AIDS-free by 2030.
Good Governance Day - Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's birthday is being celebrated as Good Governance Day across the country on 25th December. The day was established in 2014 to honor the Bharat Ratna by fostering awareness among the people on accountability in Governance and Government.
National Consumer Day - Every Year 24th December is observed as National Consumer Day. Theme of the day is “Timely Disposal of Consumer Complaints”.
Human Rights Day - The Human Rights Day was observed across the world on December 10 to commemorate the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  The Theme of the Day was ‘Let's stand up for equality, justice and human dignity’. This year, Human Rights Day marked the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Vijay Diwas - The Nation celebrated Vijay Diwas to commemorate India's victory over Pakistan in 1971 war. On 16 December 1971, the chief of the Pakistani forces, General Amir Abdullah Khan Niazi, along with 93 thousand troops, had surrendered unconditionally to the allied forces consisting of Indian Army and Mukti Bahini, led by Lieutenant General Jagjit Singh Aurora in Dhaka. This historic victory led to creation of Bangladesh. 
International Year of Millets - Food and Agriculture organisation, FAO Council has approved India’s proposal to observe an International Year of Millets in 2023. Millets consists of Jowar, Bajra, Ragi and minor millets together termed as nutri-cereals. In addition, the FAO Council has also approved India’s membership to the Executive Board of the United Nations World Food Program for 2020 and 2021. 
Year of Tolerance - UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan declared 2019 as the Year of Tolerance. The leader stated that 2019 would highlight the UAE as a global capital for tolerance, instilling the values of co-existence and peace in local, regional and international communities. 
International Day of Persons with Disabilities - The International Day of Persons with Disabilities was observed globally on December 3, 2018 with the theme “Empowering persons with disabilities and ensuring inclusiveness and equality”.
Liberation Day of Goa - On the 57th Liberation Day of Goa, the state government appealed to the people to make the coastal state free of plastic and pollution. Goa was freed from the Portuguese dominion on December 19, 1961, after a freedom movement and Army operation. It was granted full statehood in 1987.
Kisan Diwas - The ‘Kisan Diwas’ or National Farmers Day is observed across the country on 23 December to celebrate the birth anniversary of Chaudhary Charan Singh, the fifth Prime Minister of India.
National Mathematics Day - Every year, the country celebrates National Mathematics Day on December 22 to commemorate the birth anniversary of Mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan. 
Armed Forces Flag Day and Armed Forces Week - Armed Forces Week 2018 begins on 1st December and will conclude on 7th of this month. India marks the Armed Forces Flag Day on 7th December every year and this year it will be the 70th Armed Forces Flag Day. 
International Migrants Day - The International Migrants Day was observed on December 18, 2018 with the theme ‘Migration with Dignity’. Treating every migrant with dignity is one of the fundamental requirements.
National Energy Conservation Day - National energy conservation day is celebrated every year on 14th of December. The Bureau of Energy Efficiency is a constitutional body helps in the development of policies and strategies in order to reduce the energy use.
International Universal Health Coverage Day - International Universal Health Coverage Day is celebrated globally on 12 December. The theme for the 2018 UHC Day is - "Unite for Universal Health Coverage: Now is the Time for Collective Action". 
International Mountain Day - International Mountain Day is held every year on 11 December. The theme for 2018 IMD is “Mountains Matter”. 
Submarine Day - The Indian Navy is celebrating Submarine Day. The day commemorates the induction of the first submarine, the erstwhile INS Kalvari, into the Navy on this day in 1967. 
World Athletes of The Year - Kenyan distance runner Eliud Kipchoge and Colombian long and triple jumper Caterine Ibarguen have been named male and female world athletes of the year. The pair were honoured by the IAAF ( The International Association of Athletics Federations ) at a ceremony in Monaco.
World Soil Day - The World Soil Day was observed across the world on December 5, 2018. The theme of the day this year is 'Be the Solution to Soil Pollution'.
Indian Navy Day - The 47th Indian Navy Day was celebrated on December 4, 2018 across India. To celebrate the occasion, the naval forces presented a display of acrobatic skills from Army choppers in Rameswaram Tamil Nadu. 
International Human Solidarity Day - International Human Solidarity Day is organized across the world on 20th December. It is a day to celebrate our unity in diversity and also a day to remind governments to respect their commitments to international agreements.

Sports News

Olympics 2032 - Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has submitted a formal expression of interest to bid for Olympics 2032. The bid process for the 2032 Olympics will start in 2022 and a host city will be announced in 2025.
Men's Hockey WC 2018 - The Men's Hockey World Cup 2018 in Bhubaneswar got a new winner after 16 years as Belgium defeated the Netherlands 3-2 in sudden death.
Khelo India Youth Games - Khelo India Youth Games-2019 will be held in Pune of Maharashtra from the 9th to 20th of January. 
Virat Kohli - Captain Virat Kohli bettered Rahul Dravid’s long-standing record of most runs scored by an Indian in a calendar year overseas. With this 82 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Australia Kohli now has 1138 runs to his name. Dravid held the record for scoring 1137 runs in Tests away from home in 2002.
Smriti Mandhana - India’s left-handed opener Smriti Mandhana has won the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Award for the ICC Women’s Cricketer of the Year. Mandhana was also adjudged as the ICC Women’s ODI Player of the Year. 
Jon Ridgeon - The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) announced the appointment of Jon Ridgeon as its new CEO. Ridgeon will take up the new role in March 2019.
Virat Kohli - Indian skipper Virat Kohli has became the second fastest to score 25 Test centuries, only behind Sir Don Bradman. He achieved the feat when he scored 123 on the third day of the Perth Test against Australia.  Kohli also equalled Tendulkar's record of most Test tons by an Indian - that is six - in Australia.
Gautam Gambhir - After 15 years of international cricket for India, World Cup winner Gautam Gambhir has announced his retirement from all formats of cricket. Gambhir retires after last playing for the country in 2016 against England in Rajkot.
CA Kuttappa - CA Kuttappa, a Dhronacharya awardee, took over as India’s new chief boxing coach.
BVP Rao - BVP Rao has been elected as the president of the Archery Association of India in the polls.
W V Raman - Former India opener W V Raman has been appointed as head coach of the Indian women’s cricket team.
Anup Kumar - Renowned Kabaddi Player, Anup Kumar announced his retirement from Kabaddi ending a 15-year iconic career. The 35-year-old had led India to a memorable Kabaddi World Cup title triumph in 2016.
P V Sindhu - Ace Indian shuttler P V Sindhu lifted the prestigious season-ending World Tour Finals trophy at Guangzhou, China. The Olympic silver medallist defeated Japan's Nozomi Okuhara 21-19, 21-17 in the summit clash. 

Current Affairs of December Month