Current Affairs


The government has decided to expand the definition of care-givers under the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007, by making not just biological children, but even sons-in-law and daughters-in-law responsible for looking after family members. Care-givers who fail to comply can face a jail term of up to six months instead of the current maximum of three months. The definition of “maintenance” is proposed to be expanded to include housing, safety and security. The quantum of maintenance may be decided on the basis of earning and standard of living of senior citizens and parents, children and relatives.


Led by Atanu Das, Indian archers made a big statement by bagging three bronze medals at the Asian Championship. The Indian archers were competing in the tournament as neutral athletes under the World Archery flag due to the suspension of the national federation (AAI). Abhishek Verma and Jyothi Surekha Vennam claimed the top honours in compound mixed pair event to fetch India’s lone gold at the 21st Asian Archery Championships. Deepika Kumari secured an individual women’s recurve quota place for the Tokyo Olympics after striking gold in the Asian Qualification Tournament in Bangkok.


The 15th Finance Commission will submit recommendations for six years, marking the second time it will give proposals for Centre and state finances for over 5 years.


Two months after lunar lander Vikram’s failure to softland on Moon, cheer was back at Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) when it successfully launched PSLV-C47 that placed Earth observation satellite Cartosat-3 and 13 US nanosatellites. It marked ISRO’s milestone of launching over 300 satellites from 33 nations in two decades.


China has overtaken the US as the country with the most diplomatic posts across the world, even as India, the world’s second most populous country, languishes at 12th place in the diplomatic sweepstakes, according to a new data from an Australian think tank.


India continues to retain its position as the world’s top recipient of remittances, with its diaspora sending back $78.6 billion in 2018.


The BJP brass punished MP Pragya Thakur by removing her from the Parliamentary Panel on Defence for her remarks on Mahatma Gandhi’s assassin Nathuram Godse.


In a landmark deal for Indian football, the City Football Group (CFG), which owns Premier League’s champion club Manchester City, has acquired a majority 65% stake in Indian Super League side Mumbai City FC. Existing shareholders, actor Ranbir Kapoor and Bimal Parekh, will keep the remaining 35%.


The Supreme Court of Pakistan extended conditionally the tenure of General Qamar Javed Bajwa by six months during which the Imran Khan government will have to justify why it granted a controversial extension to the country’s army chief.


The European Union’s legislature declared a climate “emergency” in a symbolic bid to push the issue as high as possible on the agenda of the EU’s executive team.


Homegrown global petrochemicals major Reliance Industries (RIL) became the first Indian company to touch the Rs 10-lakh-crore market capitalisation level.


Odisha, the current home of Indian hockey, will again host the 2023 FIH Men’s Hockey World Cup. The previous edition of the World Cup was held in Bhubaneswar in December 2018 with Belgium being crowned the champions. The forthcoming edition of the extravaganza will be hosted in two cities – Bhubaneswar and Rourkela.


PILs in the Supreme Court will be heard by CJIS A Bobde and the three seniormost judges — Justices N V Ramana, Arun Mishra and R F Nariman, according to a new roster of work. The CJI has also kept with him matters such as contempt, election, habeas corpus and tax.


India has announced two separate lines of credit worth $450 million for Sri Lanka — $400 million for development assistance and $50 million for counter-terror cooperation — as PM Narendra Modi underscored the significance India attaches to its neighbour in a meeting with new President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.


On the lines of the iconic city sign in Amsterdam, Delhi will get its own six-foot-tall word installation at a “popular public location” with tourist appeal.


Delhi-NCR’s second international airport, at Jewar in Greater Noida and close to 100km from the capital’s IGI, is likely to be built and operated by Flughafen Zurich AG, the company that manages the eponymous Zurich Airport in Switzerland.


Eminent Malayalam poet Akkitham Achuthan Namboothiri, popularly known as Akkitham, has been honoured with the 55th Jnanpith Award.


In a landmark decision, the Supreme Court has said that electronic evidence in a criminal case should be classified as ‘document’ and the accused would be entitled to a copy of the same to prepare the defence.


Indu Jain, chairperson of the Times Group, India’s largest media house that publishes ‘The Times of India’, has been conferred the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI) for translating excellence in corporate governance into reality.


The RBI has filed an application for initiation of corporate insolvency resolution process against Dewan Housing Finance Corporation (DHFL). This is the first time that the insolvency process is being initiated against a finance company.


Land acquisition for India’s second spaceport has started near Kulasekarapattinam in Tamil Nadu’s Tuticorin. ISRO chief K Sivan has said that the spaceport will “cater to launches of newly developed SSLV (mini-PSLV), and southward launches will be possible”.


The Indian cupboard at the Syed Modi International Badminton Championships went bereft of gold as Sourabh Verma went down to Tzu Wei Wang of Taipei in the men’s final. Wang won 21-15, 21-17. The women’s title went to Carolina Marin of Spain, who literally toyed her way past Phittyaporn Chaiwan of Thailand 21-12, 21-16.


In what was the biggest victory margin in Indian domestic cricket, Chandigarh colts beat Mizoram by an innings and 603 runs in a Cooch Behar Trophy plate match in Kolkata.


Delhi’s Shamim Khan fired a two-under 70 in the final round for a comfortable three-shot win at the Kensville Open golf tournament.


Lewis Hamilton delivered sumptuous confirmation of his title-winning supremacy when he claimed his 84th career victory and 11th in 21 races this year by dominating the season-ending ‘twilight’ Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.


Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju launched the third edition of the Khelo India Youth Games which is scheduled to be held from January 10 to 22 in Guwahati. The third edition will have two additional sports – Cycling and Lawn Bowls as over 10,000 participants from across the country participate in a total of 451 medal events during the 13 action-packed days.


An Air India Dreamliner flight from Stockholm touched down in Delhi recently with two royal guests travelling like normal passengers as if to the manner born: King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden.


The government has started an outreach plan to “educate” people about the fundamental duties as part of the year-long celebration of the 70th year of the adoption of the Constitution. The Law Ministry has reached out to the Bar Council of India to engage students from Law Schools who will be asked to make power point presentations to schools in their areas “educating” school students on the fundamental duties.


Sub-lieutenant Shivangi set a new milestone in gender equality in the services as she adorned the ‘wings’ of the Indian Navy to become its first woman pilot at the Southern Naval Command.


ISRO launched a radar-imaging earth observation satellite RISAT-2BR1 with the help of PSLV-C48 rocket from Sriharikota on December 11 to boost the country’s space-surveillance capability.


The Swiss government says it will produce a 20 franc silver coin with Roger Federer’s image on it. The government says it’s the first time it has dedicated a commemorative coin to a living person. A 50 franc gold coin with Federer’s image on it will be minted next year. The heads side of the coin shows Federer playing a onehanded backhand.


Iraq’s parliament voted recently to accept the resignation of PM Adel Abdul Mahdi, following weeks of violent anti-government protests.


In a contest that went down to the wire, Karnataka edged past Tamil Nadu by one run to win the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 final.


Amid concerns that the collective action of all nations together is not enough to save the world from the ill-effects of global warming, the UN climate change conference was held in Madrid where representatives of nearly 200 countries worked on giving finishing touches to the rules governing the Paris accord.


This year is likely to be the second or third warmest year on record, the World Meteorological Organisation said at the UN climate conference in Madrid, adding that this decade (2010-2019) and the last five-year period were “almost certain to be the hottest on record”.


The Parliament has passed a Bill which will enable merger of two Union Territories, Daman and Diu, and Dadra and Nagar Haveli, into one unit. The merged Union Territory will be named Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu.


India recorded the highest number of fatalities in the world due to catastrophic climate events last year with 2,081 deaths. The country also witnessed economic losses of over $37,000 million — equivalent to nearly four times the annual budget for the health sector.


The Cabinet has cleared a revised Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB), which seeks to provide a path to citizenship for six minorities from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan who entered India on or before December 31, 2014 to escape religious persecution.


Sundar Pichai has taken over as the CEO of one of the world’s most cash-rich companies, Alphabet, the parent company of search engine giant Google. In a move that marks the end of an era, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who co-founded Google in 1998, stepped down from their executive roles at Alphabet.


Aerial advertising with low-flying single engine turboprops and helicopters flying low — called banner towing — will now be allowed in India. In a first, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has enacted rules to enable this after “some operators have shown interest in engaging in this activity in India”.


Lionel Messi claimed a record sixth Ballon d’Or while Megan Rapinoe added the Women’s Ballon d’Or to her collection of accolades. Dutch starlet Matthijs de Ligt won the Kopa Trophy for the best player aged under 21 while Liverpool star Alisson won the inaugural Yashin Trophy for the best goalkeeper.


A recent survey by the Home Ministry has ranked Aberdeen police station in Andaman and Nicobar Islands as the country’s best, followed by Balasinor in Gujarat’s Mahisagar and Ajk Burhanpur in MP.


The city of Aalst, Belgium, faces the prospect of an unheard-of demotion: A decade after declaring its Carnival celebrations a valued cultural expression, UNESCO could revoke that designation over anti-Semitic imagery that has been part of the revelry.


Comptroller and Auditor General Rajiv Mehrishi has been elected as the Chairman of the Panel of External Auditors of the United Nations, its specialised agencies and the International Atomic Energy Agency for 2020. He succeeds Gareth Davies, the CAG of the UK.


Former India cricketer GS Lakshmi became the first woman match referee to oversee a Men’s ODI when she officiated the opening match of the third series of the World Cup League 2 between the United Arab Emirates and the United States of America at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.


R Praggnanandhaa has become the youngest Indian and second youngest in the world to cross the 2600 ELO rating. At 14 years, 3 months and 24 days, Praggu bettered the feat of GM Nihal Sarin who was 14 years and 10 months old when he crossed the 2600 mark in May this year.


Justice NV Ramana, the second most senior Judge of the Supreme Court, has taken charge as the Executive Chairman of the National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) after being nominated by the President and issued vision document charting out the future course of action to make justice more accessible, particularly to the marginalised and vulnerable sections.


The Supreme Court has allowed granting of environmental clearances for many projects pertaining to providing essential public facilities and also permitted setting up of non-polluting industrial units in Taj Trapezium Zone.


Astronomers have discovered a black hole in the Milky Way so huge that it challenges existing models of how stars evolve, researchers said. LB-1 is 15,000 light years from Earth and has a mass 70 times greater than the Sun, according to ‘Nature’.

The Milky Way is estimated to contain 100 million stellar black holes but LB-1 is twice as massive as anything scientists thought possible, said Liu Jifeng, a National Astronomical Observatory of China Professor who led the research.