17-18 December 2017 Current Affairs

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18 Dec, 2017

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1) Rahul Gandhi formally took charge as the President of the Indian National Congress (INC) at a function held in New Delhi on 16 December 2017. He became ………….member of the Nehru-Gandhi family to occupy this post – Sixth

Explanation: 47-year old Rahul Gandhi became the sixth member of the Nehru-Gandhi family to occupy the post of the President of the Indian National Congress (INC). He replaced his mother Sonia Gandhi on 16 December 2017, who held the post for record 19 years (from 1998 to 2017)

The four other members of the Nehru-Gandhi family to occupy this prestigious post are – Motilal Nehru (1919 and 1928), Jawaharlal Nehru (1929-30, 1936, 1937, 1951-52, 1953 and 1954), Indira Gandhi (1959, 1978-83 and 1984) and Rajiv Gandhi (1985-1991).

Rajiv Gandhi is overall the 87th President of this historic political party, which was founded in 1885 in Bombay with W.C. Bonnerjee as its first President.

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2) In an exceptional step the UIDAI on 16 December 2017 temporarily barred which major telecom company from conducting Aadhaar-based SIM verification of mobile customers using eKYC on charges of related malpractices? – Bharti Airtel

Explanation: In its strongest action yet, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) on 16 December 2017 temporarily barred Bharti Airtel Ltd and Airtel Payment Bank Ltd from conducting Aadhaar-based SIM verification of mobile customers using eKYC (electronic Know Your Customer) process as well as e-KYC of payments bank clients.

This exceptional step was taken following allegations of Bharti Airtel using the Aadhaar-eKYC based SIM verification process to open payments bank accounts of its subscribers without their ‘informed consent’.

This essentially means Airtel would not be able to, in the interim, carry out ‘electronic-verification’ or link mobile SIMs of its customers with their 12-digit biometric national ID Aadhaar though the efficient and paperless eKYC process of UIDAI.

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3) The Goods and Service Tax (GST) Council on 16 December 2017 decided to make electronic permits (e-way bills) compulsory for inter-state movement of goods from which date? – 1 February 2018

Explanation: Federal indirect tax body the Goods and Service Tax (GST) Council on 16 December 2017 decided to make electronic permits compulsory for inter-state movement of goods from 1 February 2018, which will help in seamless movement of goods across state borders.

The e-way bill system will be available on a trial basis for voluntary adoption by businesses from 16 January 2018. It will help the tax authorities to monitor cross-border movement of consignments and check instances of under-valuation of goods.

States have time till 1 June 2018 to implement the national e-way bill system for intra-state goods movement. The Council wants the system to cover the entire movement of goods-within and across states- from June.

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4) Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that Mizoram had become the third power- surplus state in the north-east after commissioning of the 60-MW Tuirial hydropower project on 16 December 2017. Which are the other two power-states of the region? – Sikkim and Tripura

Explanation: Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicated the 60-MW Tuirial hydropower project in Mizoram on 16 December 2017. He announced that with this the state has become the third power- surplus state in the north-east after Sikkim and Tripura.

The Tuirial project, which was announced and cleared in 1998 by the then Atal Bihari Vajpayee government, is the first major central project to be successfully commissioned in Mizoram.

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5) Who defeated India’s P.V. Sindhu in the women’s singles final of Dubai BWF World Superseries badminton tournament on 17 December 2017? – Akane Yamaguchi (Japan)

Explanation: Top Indian badminton player PV Sindhu suffered yet another final loss, as she went down to World No. 2 Akane Yamaguchi of Japan in a pulsating women’s singles summit clash of the Dubai BWF World Superseries Finals on 18 December 2017.  Dubai Superseries is the prestigious season-ending tournament of the BWF calendar.

Yamaguchi defeated Sindhu 15-21, 21-12 and 21-19. Sindhu lost the final despite winning the first game and leading in the second game 5-0 at one time. Sindhu thus came agonisingly close to clinching the title before finishing runner-up once again in her third major tournament, following last year’s Rio Olympics and this year’s Glasgow World Championship in August 2017.

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Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar was crowned as the new Maharaja of of Mysuru (Mysore) royal family. He is the 23-year old grandson of Princess Gayathri Devi, who was the eldest daughter of the last Maharaja of Mysore, Sri Jayachamarajendra Wadiyar. The coronation was held at Mysuru’s famous Amba Vilas Palace, which was decked up for the occasion.

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