22 July

International News Affairs

  • The United States today announced that the government will ban citizens from traveling to North Koreadue to “the serious risk of arrest”.
  • Insurance giant Swiss Re is preparing aninsurance policy for the Mesoamerican Reef in Mexico to prevent its further deterioration.
    • Under the scheme, which is the first for a natural structure, the premiums will be paid by hotels and government, and money to pay for the repair of the reef will be released if a storm strikes.
  • The US Defence Department today announced that it will not make military reimbursements to Pakistanfor 2016 fiscal.
    • This comes after US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said that Pakistan had not taken sufficient action against the Afghan insurgent group Haqqani Network.
    • Note: Earlier, the US Senate had voted to impose tougher conditions on defense aid to Pakistan.

National News Affairs

  • The government is pro-actively considering having two separate time zones in the country.
    • This came after Odisha MP B Mahtab raised the issue and said that there was a gap of nearly two hours in the sunrise between the eastern and western regions of the country.
  • The government has said that India has less than 1 doctor for every 1,000 people, which is less than the World Health Organisation standard.
    • Around 8.18 lakh doctors may be available for active service, giving a doctor-population ratio of 0.62:1000, the Minister of State for Health Anupriya Patel said.
    • Note : The WHO prescribes a ratio of 1:1000.

New Appointments

  • Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Gopal Baglay was appointed as Joint Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) 
    • He will have the tenure of 3 years.
    • He is going to replace Vinay Mohan Kwatra, who has been named as India’s Ambassador to France.
  • Sanjay Kothari, a 1978-batch IAS officer of Haryana cadre, has been appointed as the Secretary to President-elect Ram Nath Kovind.
    • Senior journalist Ashok Malik has been appointed as the Press Secretary to Kovind.
  • The Deputy President of the UK Supreme Court,Brenda Hale has been appointed as the first female president of the UK Supreme Court.


Banking, Business & Economic News

  • Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said that the Financial year may soon begin from Januaryin sync with the calendar year.
    • Important Note: In May, Madhya Pradesh became India’s first state to shift its financial year format to January-December from the present April-March cycle.
  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has refused to deposit cash of over ₹200 crore in old notes from 31 district central cooperative banks in Maharashtra.
    • RBI argued that the cooperative banks collected the notes after they were demonetised, but the banks claim they were collected before.
  • For a 4th consecutive year, US retail giant Walmart has topped the 2017 Fortune Global 500 list with a revenue of $486 billion.
    • Important Points to Note :
      • 7 Indian companies were featured in this list.
      • Indian Oil, with revenues of over $53 billion in previous fiscal, is the highest ranked Indian company and placed 168th globally.

Current Sports Affairs

  • Taking India’s medals tally to three, the Indian para-athlete Karamjyoti Dalal won a Bronze Medal in discus throw at the ongoing World Para Athletics Championships