1. Scheme for Capacity Building in Textile Sector (SCBTS) was approved by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) to ensure steady supply of skilled manpower in the labour-intensive textile sector. The objective of SCBTS is to provide demand driven, placement oriented skilling programme to incentivize efforts of the textile industry in creating jobs in the organized textile and related sectors. SCBTS is a new skill development scheme covering the entire value chain of textile sector excluding Spinning & Weaving in organized Sector. It will remain operational for three years ending in 2019-20 with an outlay of Rs. 1300 Crore.
2. India was selected as Chair of Ad Hoc Committee on Review & Reforms to look into various issues pertaining to the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPSC) at recently held KP Plenary Session in Brisbane, Australia. India was appointed as the Kimberly Process (KP) Vice Chair for 2018 & Chair for 2019 in the last plenary of KP held in Dubai in November, 2016. The EU will be KP Chair for 2018. Angola will be the Vice Chair of this Adhoc Committee and will work with India and other members of Committee on reform issues related to changes in core document, expansion of scope of KP.
3. Auction of 683 private FM radio frequencies in 236 cities across country under Phase III of FM radio privatization was approved by the Union Cabinet. The sale of these channels in Phase III is likely to generate direct and indirect employment to more than 10,000 persons on a pan-India basis. It will also yield estimated revenue of more than Rs 1,100 crore.
4. Project DARPAN (The Digital Advancement of Rural Post Office for A New India) was launched by the Union Ministry of Communications to improve quality of service, add value to services and achieve financial inclusion of un-banked rural population. It aims to increase rural reach of Department of Posts (DoP) and enable BOs to increase traffic of all financial remittances, savings accounts, Rural Postal Life Insurance and Cash Certificates. It also aims to improve mail operations processes by allowing for automated booking and delivery of accoutable article. DARPAN is Information Technology (IT) modernisation project aimed at realising financial inclusion of un-banked rural population. It offers core banking services to the account holders.
5. ICGS Sujay - An Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) was recently commissioned into Indian Coast Guard (ICG). It is sixth and last in the series of six 105m OPV built indigenously by Goa Shipyard Limited for ICG. ICGS Sujay (meaning Great Victory) will based at Paradip, Odisha under operational and administrative control of Commander Coast Guard Region (North-East). It is 105 meter OPV fitted with state-of-the-art navigation and communication equipment, sensors and machineries. Its features include Integrated Bridge System (IBS), Integrated Machinery Control System (IMCS), 30mm CRN 91 Naval Gun, Power Management System (PMS) and High Power External Fire Fighting System). Presently, ICG has fleet of 134 ships and boats and 66 ships and boats are at various stages of construction at different shipyards in India.
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7. The Union Cabinet has approved a New Consumer Protection bill that establishes an authority to safeguard consumers rights and has provisions for penalty and jail terms in case of adulteration and misleading advertisements by companies.
8. India’s national academy of letters Sahitya Akademi on 21st Dec announced its annual awards recognizing the literary works of 24 writers in 24 different Indian Languages. The awards will be conferred upon the winners during a ceremony on 12 Feb 2018. List of awardees: 1. English: Mamang Dai for his novel The Black Hill. 2. Hindi: Ramesh Kuntal Megh for his literary criticism work Vishw Mithak Sarit Sagar. 3. Sanskrit : Niranjan Mishra was awarded for his Sanskrit novel Gangaputravadanam 4. Malayam : KP Ramanunni won for Daivathinte Pusthakam in Malayalam. 5. Punjabi : Nachchattar was awarded for his novel slow down. 6. Poets: Udaya Narayana Singh (Maithili), Shrikant Deshmukh ( Marathi), Bhujanga Tudu ( Santali), Inqulab (Tamil) and Devipriya (Telugu).However, Tamilian poet inqulab’s family refused to accept the award for his collections of poems titled “ Kaandhal Naatkal “. 7. Short Stories : Shiv Megh (Dogiri), Autar Krishen Rahbar ( Kasmiri), Gajanan Jog (Konkani), Gayathri Saraf (Odia) and Baig Ehsas ( Urudu )
9. Delhi raked 7th in most expensive office locations list as per JLL India Report 2017.
10. West Bengal decided to beautify and upgrade the 187-year-old Babughat.
11. Birmingham will host Commonwealth Games in 2022
12. Justice UD Salvi was appointed as the officiating Chief of National Green Tribunal.
13. The Union Government has imposed 30% import duty on Chana Dhal and Masoor Dhal
14. Ekta Bisht, Indian female cricketer has been selected for both ICC Women’s ODI Cricket team of the year and ICC Women’s T 20 International cricket team of the year.
15. The High Court of Himachal Pradesh has ordered to cut off electricity, water supplies, to the unregistered commercial establishments.
16. The Uttar Pradesh state assembly has passed a stringent bill, UPCOC which is aimed at curbing organized crime and terror in the state.