1.India and the World

India-UAE sign MoU for Scientific & Technical Cooperation

The Union Cabinet recently approved the India-UAE Memorandum of Understanding for Scientific and Technology Cooperation. 

The MoU provides sharing of knowledge & information of data from satellites, radar, tide gauges, and meteorological stations between the countries.

Global cooperation in this field is highly important to modernize weather and forecasting services strengthening countries to face climate change & related disasters.

2.International Affairs

India’s Eight-Point Action Plan to UNSC to combat terrorism

The External Affairs Minister Dr. S Jaishankar recently addressed the UNSC open debate during which he proposed an eight-point action plan to combat terrorism.

The UNSC open debate was chaired by the current President of the 15-member UNSC body, Tunisia.

The UNSC is made of 5 permanent members and 10 non-permanent members, the 5 permanent members being China, UK, France, Russia, and the USA.

Quick Fact: The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is headquartered in New York, United States.

3.Sports

Jay Shah named BCCI’s official representative on the ICC board

Jay Shah has been named as the official representative of BCCI for International Cricket Council’s (ICC) meetings.

Shah is the Secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).

Shah will replace Saurav Ganguly who was currently representing India at the ICC Board but had to be admitted to hospital following a heart ailment.

4.Person in News

Oldest living Olympic Champion Agnes Keleti turns 100

The oldest living Olympic Champion belonging to Hungary, Agnes Keleti celebrated her 100th Birthday recently.

Agnes is one of Hungary’s most successful Olympians securing 10 medals in Gymnastics at the Olympic Games Helsinki 1952 and Melbourne 1956.

At the age of 35, Agnes became the oldest female gymnast to win an Olympic title.

5.National Affairs

Union Budget 2021 to be paperless for the first time in history

Union Budget 2021 which is slated to be presented on February 1 is going to be completely paperless for the first time since independence in the wake of ongoing COVID-19.

The budget papers are usually printed at the ministry’s in-house printing press in the North Block.

Several conventions would be broken including the traditional ‘Halwa’ ceremony and a low-key function would be held with limited gathering.

Quick Fact: Nirmala Sitharaman is the Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs.

6.Defense

Dr. Ajay Kumar co-chairs 13th India-Vietnam Defense Security Dialogue

The 13th edition of India-Vietnam Defense Security Dialogue held virtually was co-chaired by Defense Secretary Dr. Ajay Kumar.

Defense Secretary and the Deputy Defense Secretary Lt Gen Nguyen Chi Vinh expressed satisfaction at the ongoing cooperation between the two countries amid COVID-19.

The meeting reviewed the progress on various bilateral cooperation & ensured elevated engagements between the armed forces under the ‘Com[rehensive Strategic Partnership’.

Quick Fact: The currency of Vietnam is ‘Vietnamese Dong’.

7.Person in News

Indian-American writer Ved Mehta passes away

Celebrated Indian-American novelist Ved Mehta, who overcame blindness and became known as the 20th-century writer, breathed his last at the age of 86.

Mehta was a staff writer for ‘The New Yorker’ magazine for 33 years and his 24 books included volumes of reportage on India.

Mehta was the recipient of the MacArthur Foundation ‘genius grant’ in 1982.

8.Miscellaneous

The first-ever climbing festival celebrated in Nubra Valley

In Leh, the first-ever climbing festival was celebrated in the Nubra valley Ladakh.

The seven-day climbing event was organized by Nubra Adventure Club.

To promote winter tourism in Nubra valley, Nubra Adventure Club, with the help of Social activist Dr. Nordan Otzer, has organized the Seven Day Ice Climbing Festival.