1. DCIL signed MoU with WAPCOS to jointly identify future projects
Dredging Corporation of India Limited (DCIL) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with WAPCOS Limited, a mini-Ratna PSU under Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation.
The main objective is to jointly recognize suitable future projects and carry out a geotechnical investigation and engineering consultancy in the fields like water resources, power and infrastructure, port and harbor dredging.
About Dredging Corporation of India Limited (DCIL)
- Founded: 9 March 1976
- Headquarters: Visakhapatnam, India
- Managing Director: Rajesh Tripathi
About WAPCOS Limited
- Parent organization: Ministry of Water Resources, River Development & Ganga Rejuvenation
- Revenue: 928 crores INR (2015, US$130 million)
- Headquarters: New Delhi
- Founded: 26 June 1969
2. Pakistan named its retaliatory action against India on February 27 as Operation Swift Retort
Pakistan Air Force announced that they will observe its retaliatory action against India against the Balakot strike of Indian Air Force as ‘Operation Swift Retort’.
- The Indian air strikes at Balakot terror camp on February 26 was a response of Pakistan based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) attack by a suicide bomber in Pulwama that killed 40 CRPF jawans.
- In response to Indian attack, Pakistan Air Force (PAF) retaliated and captured IAF Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman who was released by Pakistan on March 1.
- Capital: Islamabad
- Currency: Pakistani Rupee
- President: Arif Alvi
- Prime Minister: Imran Khan
3. Goods and Services Tax collection at an all-time high
Goods and Services Tax (GST) collection scales record high of Rs 1.13 lakh crore in April, highest ever collection since GST implementation.
- The GST collections in April jumped to its highest level of Rs 1,13,865 crore since its rollout in 2017.
- While collections have been gradually increasing since August, they hit a record high last month of Rs 1.06 lakh crore, up from Rs 97,247 crore in the previous month.
- The total number of GSTR 3B Returns filed for the month of March up to 30th April 2019 is 72.13 lakh.
The first part of the Indo-French joint naval exercise, Varuna 19.1 is being held off the Goa coast from 1 to 10 May 2019.
- The exercise is being conducted in two phases.
- The harbor phase at Goa would include cross-visits, professional interactions and discussions, and sports events.
- Varuna 19.2, the second part of the exercise, is scheduled to be held in May end in Djibouti.
5. Apurvi Chandela attains world number one spot in women’s 10 m air rifle event
Indian shooting ace Apurvi Chandela attained the world number one position in the women’s 10 meters air rifle event.
- Anjum Moudgil attained number two after consistent performances in recent years.
- The rifle ace from Jaipur is among the five Indian shooters to have already secured 2020 Olympics quotas for the country.
- Moudgil attained the world number two rank in 10 meters Air Rifle after her mixed team gold at the ISSF World Cup in Beijing.
- Manu Bhaker is the world number 10 in 25 meters pistol women category.
- Divyansh Singh Panwar’s World Cup exploits in Beijing helped him reach world number four spot in 10 meters air rifle category.
- Divyansh won two gold medals at Beijing — 10 meters air rifle and 10 meters air rifle mixed team – and also secured his quota at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
- Abhishek Verma won gold in Beijing reached world number three in 10 meters Air Pistol category. India’s teen sensation Saurabh Chaudhary was not far away at world number 6.
6. Kumar Sangakkara named as first non-British President of MCC
Former Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara appointed as the first non-British president of the Marylebone Cricket Club.
- Sangakkara will be the first overseas MCC president in the organization’s 233-year history.
- The wicketkeeper-batsman, whose nomination was announced by current president Anthony Wreford will begin his one-year tenure in October.
- He is an honorary life member of MCC
- He owns Lord’s and acts as the guardian of the laws of the game, was founded in 1787 and lists 168 presidents.
About Kumar Sangakkara
- Batting: Left handed
- Bowling: Right arm off break
- Role: Wicket-keeper, Batsman
- He is widely regarded as one of the world’s most influential cricketers and one of the greatest batsmen of all-time.
- A left-handed top-order batsman, he is also a record-breaking wicket-keeper, although he no longer kept wicket at the end of his Test career.
7. Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria Appointed as Vice Chief of Air Staff
Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria was commissioned in the fighter stream of Indian Air Force in 1980 and won the coveted ‘Sword of Honour’ for standing first in the overall order of merit.
- He has over 4250 hours of experience on twenty-six types of fighters and transport aircraft with the unique distinction of being an Experimental Test Pilot, a Cat ‘A’ Qualified Flying Instructor and a Pilot Attack Instructor.
- He held a number of important appointments, which include, Command of a Jaguar Squadron and a premier Air Force Station, Commanding Officer of Flight Test Squadron at Aircraft and System Testing Establishment, Chief Test Pilot and Project Director of National Flight Test Centre on Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) project.
- He was extensively involved in the initial prototype flight tests on the LCA.
- Air Marshal Bhadauria was also the Air Attache, at Embassy of India in Moscow, Assistant Chief of the Air Staff (Projects), Commandant of the National Defence Academy, Senior Air Staff Officer at HQ CAC, Deputy Chief of the Air Staff at Air HQ and Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Southern Air Command.
8. UN designates Masood Azhar as a global terrorist
The United Nations designated Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar as a “global terrorist”.
- The decision came after China lifted its hold on a proposal to blacklist him.
- A “global terrorist” designation will subject Azhar to an assets freeze, travel ban and an arms embargo.
- France, US and UK had moved a fresh proposal to declare Azhar as a global terrorist at the UN in the wake of the Pulwama terror attack.
- Jaish-e-Mohammed had claimed responsibility for the attack. China had put a technical hold on the proposal, blocking it for the fourth time to designate Azhar.
State Bank of India has moved to a new interest rate regime on large savings account deposits as well as short-term loans.
- In March, SBI had announced that it will link its interest rate on savings account with a balance above ₹1 lakh and short-term loans like overdraft and cash credit facility to Reserve Bank of India’s repo rate, effective 1 May 2019.
- The interest rates on large SBI savings account deposits and interest rate on some short-term loans will automatically change as and when RBI changes its repo rate.
- This will help in better transmission of RBI’s policy rates into the banking system.
10. Pangolins are under threat of extinction
The scaly anteater, or Indian Pangolin, is a rare secretive mammal that lives on a diet of ants and termites, thus playing a vital role in the ecosystem. Pangolins are highly trafficked creatures.
- The Pangolin is currently under threat in Pakistan because of extensive illegal hunting for its scales, which are illegally exported to China to be used for traditional medicine.
- There are eight species of pangolins, and they are all protected by national and international laws. But despite the laws, there is a lot of illegal international trade in them. The Pangolins are now under the threat of extinction.
- Pangolins look like reptiles, but they are mammals with a unique feature.
- Pangolins have large, protective keratin scales covering their skin; they are the only known mammals with this feature.
- They use these scales for protection. If an enemy comes near it, the pangolin will immediately curl into a tight ball. Only the scales will be visible to the enemy.