January 25 – National Voters’ Day:
- The 10th National Voters’ Day (NVD) will be celebrated today.
- Theme – ‘Electoral Literacy for Stronger Democracy’.
- The theme sets the tone for year-long activities with a focus on voter education and renewal of citizens’ faith in the electoral process.
- The Day is celebrated on 25th January every year since 2011.
- It is celebrated at over ten lakh locations across the country including polling stations, district and state headquarters, to mark the Foundation day of Election Commission of India, which was established on 25th January 1950.
- President Ram Nath Kovind will be the Chief Guest at the 10th National Voters’ Day function which is being organized by the Election Commission of India at Manekshaw Centre in New Delhi.
Budget 2020 – Nomura Expects India’s Fiscal Deficit For FY20 Likely To Slip To 3.7%:
- Due to significantly lower nominal growth, a slowdown in tax revenue growth and lower than expected disinvestment proceeds, Nomura the government is likely to reveal a fall in fiscal deficit by around 0.4 percent to 3.7 percent for the current fiscal year at the upcoming Union Budget 2020 presentation.
- For the fiscal year 2019-20, the government had budgeted fiscal deficit at 3.3 percent of GDP (gross domestic product).
India Pips US To Become 2nd Largest Smartphone Market In 2019:
- Riding on Chinese brands, the Indian smartphone market surpassed the US for the first time on an annual level, becoming the second-largest smartphone market after China globally-reaching 158 million shipments in the calendar year 2019 with 7 percent growth, a report from Counterpoint Research.
- While Xiaomi continued to be the top player with 28 percent market share in the calendar year 2019, Samsung was second with 21 per cent and Vivo at 16 percent market share, said Counterpoint’s ‘Market Monitor’ service.
Madhya Pradesh Govt Made The Reading Of Preamble Of Constitution Mandatory In Schools:
- In Madhya Pradesh, state government has made the reading of Preamble of the Constitution mandatory in schools on every Saturday.
- The Department of School Education stated that orders in this regard have been issued to District Education Officers.
- The order issued by the School Education department said that the Preamble to the Constitution will be read out by the headmaster or teacher in all the schools after prayer on every Saturday.
- The same will be read out by the students later.
India Opens Its First Mahatma Gandhi Convention Centre In Niger:
- External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar and President of Niger Mahamadou Issoufou jointly inaugurated the first convention centre established in Africa by India to honour the memory of Mahatma Gandhi.
- The External Affairs Ministry said in a statement that the establishment of the Mahatma Gandhi International Convention Centre (MGICC) is a landmark for India-Niger friendship, as also a symbol of India’s firm commitment towards Africa.
- It is the first centre to be established in Africa by India to honour the memory of Mahatma Gandhi whose 150th Birth Anniversary was observed last year.
- The convention centre has been designed as a spacious, modern and eco-friendly facility, including a 2,000 capacity Plenary Hall, to witness high-level and wide-ranging participation from African Union member states and other high-level conventions.
Election Commission of India receives cabinets approval to ink agreement with EC of Tunisia and Papua New Guinea:
- The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has granted its approval to the Election Commission of India to ink agreement with Papua New Guinea Electoral Commission and Independent High Authority for Elections of Tunisia.
- The cabinet has also approved agreements between India and Brazil in the field of mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters, cooperation in the field of early childhood care, oil and natural gas, and Geology and Mineral Resources.
India, Bangladesh Sign Agreement To Upgrade Ashuganj-Akhaura Road Into 4-Lane Highway:
- India and Bangladesh signed an agreement on Thursday to upgrade the 50.58-kilometre long road between Ashuganj river port and the Akhaura land port in Bangladesh into a 4-lane highway.
- The deal to upgrade the 39 km long road between Ashuganj river port to Dharhar area was signed between the Roads and Highways Department (RHD) of Bangladesh and an Indian Company Afcons Infrastructure Limited.
- The RHD and an India-Bangladesh joint venture firm will take up the work of upgrading the remaining part of the road from Dharhar to Akhaura.
- The project is part of the dollar 2 billion second line of credit extended by India to Bangladesh in 2016.
- The project will boost connectivity between Bangladesh and North-eastern part of India which will facilitate sub-regional connectivity among South and South-east Asian countries.
GoI, Government of Maharashtra and World Bank has signed USD 210 million loan agreement:
- A USD 210 million loan agreement has been signed by the Government of India and the Government of Maharashtra & the World Bank for Maharashtra Agribusiness and Rural Transformation Project.
- The loan amount will be funded by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD). The loan will have a 6-year grace period with a maturity period of 13.5 years.
International Summit “Visualizing the Future: New Skylines” held in India:
- India hosts the International Summit on Women in STEM “Visualizing the Future: New Skylines” at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi.
- Department of Biotechnology organized the summit which aimed to boost the women participation in STEM field for the development of scientific career.
ISRO To Send Robot ‘Vyommitra’ To Space On Unmanned Gaganyaan:
- Before orbiting astronauts on India’s first manned mission to space in December 2021, the Indian Space Research Organisation will send ‘Vyommitra‘, a ‘lady robot‘ in the unmanned Gaganyaan spacecraft.
- ISRO Chairman K Sivan told reporters the half humanoid will simulate human functions in space and also interact with the environment control life support system.
Sunil Arora assumes Chairmanship of FEMBoSA for 2020:
- The Forum of the Election Management Bodies of South Asia (FEMBoSA) has got a new chairman- Sunil Arora for the year 2020.
- The Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) of India, Sunil Arora took over as the chairman from KM Nurul Huda who is the present Chief Election Commissioner of Bangladesh.
Adhiban, Narayanan Register Impressive Wins In Gibraltar Chess:
- Indian Grandmasters B Adhiban and S L Narayanan registered impressive wins in the third round of the Masters’ category of the ongoing Gibraltar chess festival.
- Adhiban and Narayanan scored superb wins over Martin Petrov of Bulgaria and Tingjie Lei of China while young GM Raunak Sadhwani securing 1.5 points shared the point with higher-ranked David Navara.
- Apart from Adhiban and Narayanan, there are a few other Indians on 2.5 points, including Vaibhav Suri and Karthikeyan Murali. Young Grandmaster R Praggnanandhaa beat International Master Padmini Rout to take his tally to 2.
Ban over Dattu Bhokanal lifted by Rowing Federation of India:
- Dattu Bhokanal, who was suspended in March, 2019 from the game by the Rowing Federation of India for the period of 2 years has been allowed to prepare for the Olympic qualification Regatta to be held in April 2020 at South Korea, as the ban imposed on him was lifted off by the Rowing Federation of India.
World Archery lifts suspension on India:
- The World Archery has lifted the suspension on India and hence allowed the Indian Archers to represent India in the upcoming International tournaments.
- The world body has advised the Archery Association of India to comply with the rules set up by the World Archery constitution to ensure the good governance in the sport.