Current Affairs of 21st December 2019

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Maharashtra Govt. announced loan waiver of up to Rs. 2 lakh for farmers

The Maharashtra government announced a loan waiver of up to Rs. 2 lakh for farmers, with a cutoff date of September 30, 2019.

Crop loans outstanding till September 30, 2019, will be waived by my government under the “Mahatma Jyotirao Phule loan waiver scheme”. The upper ceiling for the amount is Rs. 2 lakh. Chief MinisterUddhav Thackeray made the announcement in the Legislative Assembly here on the last day of the winter session of the legislature.

External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar will visit Iran and Oman to enhanced engagement with the Gulf region

External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar will visit Iran and Oman to enhanced engagement with the Gulf region

External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar will start a two-day visit to Iran from Sunday, where he will co-chair the 19th Joint Commission Meeting with his Iranian counterpart, Javed Zarif.

Jaishankar is also expected to call upon Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. The meeting comes days after the US provided a rare exemption to India from sanctions on the Chabahar port in Iran as Washington said it recognized that the strategic project was a lifeline for war-torn Afghanistan to get humanitarian supplies from India.

The Chabahar port was jointly being developed by India, Iran, and Afghanistan. It is considered a gateway to golden opportunities for trade with central Asian nations by the three countries. It is located on the Indian Ocean in the Sistan and Baluchestan province of Iran.

Jaishankar will also be visiting Oman from December 23 to 25 at the invitation of Omani Foreign Minister Yousuf bin Alawi bin Abdullah. The visit is in pursuit of India’s objective of enhanced engagement with the Gulf region, which is in India’s extended neighborhood. It will provide an opportunity to hold in-depth discussions with the political leadership on a wide range of bilateral, regional and global issues and will advance India’s growing engagement with Oman and the region.

Central government to organize 100 ‘Hunar Haats’ in next five years

The government has decided to organize 100 Hunar Haat across the country in the next five years. These Haat aim to provide market exposure and employment opportunities to artisans, craftsmen and traditional culinary experts.

Ministry of Minority Affairs said, in the coming days, Hunar Haat will be organized in New Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai, Kolkata, Lucknow, Dehradun, Patna, Indore, and other places.

The Ministry has also sanctioned 100 Hunar Hubs in different parts of the country wherein training is being provided to master artisans, craftsmen, and traditional culinary experts.
According to the Ministry, more than two lakh 65 thousand artisans and craftsmen have been provided employment through Hunar Haat in the last two years.

The first Hunar Haat was organized in Jaipur in August-September this year. More than 200 master artisans and culinary experts including a large number of women artisans from every corner of the country participated in this Hunar Haat.

Bombay HC asks 3 mining companies to pay Rs. 65 Lakh for polluting agricultural land

Bombay HC asks 3 mining companies to pay Rs. 65 Lakh for polluting agricultural land

The Goa bench of the Bombay High Court has directed three mining companies to deposit Rs 65 lakh each before it for rehabilitating the agricultural land that was polluted due to mining.

Justice M S Sonak and Justice M S Jawalkar issued the interim order on 18th December after the state’s counsel argued that the mining companies were responsible for filling silt in the paddy field in Sirigao village of North Goa.

The court also directed the District Mineral Foundation (a corpus created by the Centre through the tax contribution by mining firms) to earmark Rs 2 crore for the purpose.

Vedanta Inc, Rajaram Bandekar (Siridao) Mines Private Limited and Chowgule & Company Private Limited are respondents in this petition.

If it is found that the mining companies are not responsible for this silt or are not responsible under the polluters pay principle, then the District Mineral Foundation will have to bear the entire expenditure, the bench observed.

The court also directed the state water resources department to take up the work of desilting the fields within 30 days. During their arguments, the mining companies denied that they were responsible for polluting the field, as “for the last six to seven years, mining has stopped in Goa.”
Advocate General D S Pangam pointed out that mining activities were carried out in the state from 2015 to 2018.

The 66th National Film Awards will be presented on 23rd December in New Delhi

The 66th National Film Awards will be presented on Monday at a function in New Delhi. Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu will give away the awards.

The 66th National Film Awards ceremony was the award ceremony which took place in 2019 to honor the best films of 2018, in the Indian cinema. The declaration of awards was delayed due to the 2019 Indian general election.

Uttarakhand will be awarded as the Most Film Friendly State.

Awards Winners

Award Film Language Awardee(s)
Best Feature Film Hellaro Gujarati Producer: Saarthi Productions LLP Director: Abhishek Shah
Best Debut Film of a Director Naal Marathi Producer: Mrudhgandh Films LLP Director: Sudhakar Reddy Yakkanti
Best Popular Film Providing Wholesome Entertainment Badhaai Ho Hindi Producer: Junglee Pictures Limited Director: Amit Sharma
Best Children’s Film Sarkari Hi. Pra. Shaale, Kasaragodu, Koduge: Ramanna Rai Kannada Producer & Director: Rishab Shetty
Best Direction Uri: The Surgical Strike Hindi Aditya Dhar
Nargis Dutt Award for Best Feature Film on National Integration Ondalla Eradalla Kannada Producer: Umapathy Srinivas Director: D Satya Prakash
Best Film on Other Social Issues Pad Man Hindi Producer: Hope Productions Pvt. Ltd Director: R. Balki
Best Film on Environment/Conservation/Preservation Paani Marathi Producer: Purple Pebble Pictures Director: Adinath Kothare
Best Actor AndhadhunUri: The Surgical Strike Hindi Ayushman Khurrana for Andhadhun and Vicky Kaushal for Uri: The Surgical Strike
Best Actress Mahanati Telugu Keerthy Suresh
Best Supporting Actor Chumbak Marathi Swanand Kirkire
Best Supporting Actress Badhaai Ho Hindi Surekha Sikri
Best Male Playback Singer Padmaavat (For the song “Binte Dil”) Hindi Arijit Singh
Best Female Playback Singer Nathicharami (For the song “Maayavi Manave”) Kannada Bindhu Malini
Best Cinematography Olu Malayalam M. J. Radhakrishnan
Best Choreography Padmaavat (For the song “Ghoomar”) Hindi Jyoti D Tommar & Kruti Mahesh Midya
Best Feature Film in Bengali Ek Je Chhilo Raja Bengali Director: Srijit Mukherji Producer: SVF Entertainment Pvt. Ltd.

Afghanistan first country to recognize Indian Pharmacopoeia

The Indian Pharmacopoeia (IP) has been recognised formally by the National Department of Regulation of Medicines and Health Products of the Ministry of Public Health of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. It will also be used based on the requirement as reputable pharmacopoeia in the laboratory of medicines and health products quality. With this, a new beginning has been made and Afghanistan has become the first country to recognize IP pursuant to the efforts of the Department of Commerce and Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

IP is an officially recognized book of standards as per the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Rules 1945 thereunder. The IP specifies the standards of drugs manufactured and marketed in India in terms of their identity, purity and strength.

The quality, efficacy and safety of the medicines are important from the healthcare perspective. In order to ensure the quality of medicinal products, the legal and scientific standards are provided by Indian Pharmacopoeia Commission (IPC) in the form of Indian Pharmacopoeia (IP).

As per, the Second Schedule of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, IP is designated as the official book of standards for drugs imported and/or manufactured for sale, stock or exhibition for sale or distribution in India. In addition, IPC also develops IP Reference Substances (IPRS) that act as a fingerprint for identification of an article under test and its purity as prescribed in the IP monographs.

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