1. Kalpana Chawla Centre for Research in Space Science, Technology inaugurated
- Raksha Mantri has inaugurated Kalpana Chawla Centre for Research in Space Science & Technology at Chandigarh University.
- He also launched Scholarship Scheme, worth Rs 10 crore, for the wards of Defence Personnel of the three Services.
- It is established with the objective of training students in space science, satellite development and meet future challenges in space research
- It would be the Ground Control Station for the Chandigarh University's Student Satellite.
National & International Appointments
2. Vini Mahajan assumes charge as Secretary, Ministry of Jal Shakti
- Vini Mahajan assumed the charge as Secretary in the Ministry of Jal Shakti, Dept of Drinking Water and Sanitation.
- Prior to this, she was serving as the Punjab Chief Secretary from 26th June 2020.
- She also served as Principal Secretary of Department of Medical Education and Research, and Principal Secretary Finance, Punjab.
- She served as Joint Secretary to the Prime Minister of India from 2007-2012, and earlier in 2004-05 as Director in Department of Economic Affairs
National & International Appointments
3. G Asok Kumar takes over as new DG for National Mission for Clean Ganga
- G Asok Kumar (1991 batch IAS officer of Telangana Cadre) took over as the new Director General for the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), Ministry of Jal Shakti.
- He has held several important post like Joint Secretary in Ministry of Civil Aviation and Director in Ministry of Power
- He has also served as NMCG Executive Director Projects
- NMCG: It was launched to reduce pollution and ensure rejuvenation of Ganga River, along with improvement in ecology, biodiversity
4. France takes over European Union Presidency for Six Months 2022
- France takes over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union for the first time in 14 years with effect from 1st January 2022 till 30 June 2022
- Presidency of the Council (Council of Ministers) organizes meetings, brokers compromise, submits conclusions.
- Each Member State of EU holds the presidency of Council of the European Union for six months on a rotational basis.
- It serves as the co-legislator of the European Union, along with European Parliament.
5. Foundation stone for Heartfulness International Yoga Academy laid
- Union Ayush Minster, Sarbananda Sonowal has laid foundation stone for the Heartfulness International Yoga Academy for setting new benchmarks in yoga training at Hyderabad.
- It comprises Yoga halls that can accommodate 100 Yoga students in each hall, therapeutic Yoga rooms for consultation, one to one training spaces, etc
- It will have trainers from India, Europe, Australia, Uzbekistan and US.
- It is registered with Yoga Certification Board as a Leading yoga Institution.
6. Union Education Minister launches NEAT 3.0 ed-tech solutions
- Union Education Minister, Dharmendra Pradhan has launched NEAT 3.0, a single platform to provide best-developed ed-tech solutions, courses to students
- AICTE prescribed technical books in regional languages was also launched
- It will help more than 12 lakhs socially and economically disadvantaged students have received free ed-tech course coupons
- National Educational Alliance for Technology (NEAT): initiative to provide the use of best-developed technological solutions
7. Prime Minister Hasina inaugurates Dhaka International Trade Fair
- Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina has inaugurated 26th annual Dhaka International Trade Fair (DITF)
- She also declared the ICT products and services as the ‘product of the year 2022’
- It is a month-long trade fair for exploring new markets and diversify product basket.
- It is being organized by Ministry of Commerce and Export Promotion Bureau with the help of other agencies
- DITF has 227 stalls including 23 pavilions where traders from 11 countries are taking part
8. Manuals and Newsletter of Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre released
- Union Home Secretary has released three Manuals and Newsletter of the Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C) under Cyber and Information Security Division (CIS) in New Delhi.
- Manuals and newsletter released were:
- Cyber Hygiene for Cyber Space - Dos and Don’ts – Basic Manual
- Cyber Hygiene for Cyber Space - Dos and Don’ts – Advanced Manual
- Quarterly Newsletter ‘CyberPravah’ covers introduction to I4C, various activities of I4C, etc.
9. Climate Awareness Campaign and National Photography Competition
- Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA) is organizing Climate Change Awareness Campaign and National Photography Competition
- Campaign will have Municipal Commissioners and key heads of urban local bodies and Smart City CEOs creating awareness about Urban Climate Change and Sustainability
- The competition will be open to all participants till 26th January 2022 on climate change
- Both the campaign and competition to sensitize the challenges posed by climate change.
10. Hong Kong news portal 'Citizen News' announces to cease its operations
- Hong Kong online news portal titled ‘Citizen News’ has announced to cease operations from January 4th to ensure everyone is safe in this time of crisis and its website will also shut down soon.
- The decision came just three days after another Hong Kong-based news portal ‘Stand News’ shut down as national security police booked seven people who worked at or were linked to the news portal for allegedly publishing anti-China content, stirring up hatred against the government.
11. Sri Lanka to go bankrupt by 2022 with record-high inflation
- Sri Lanka is reported to go bankrupt by 2022 as the country is facing a deepening financial and humanitarian crisis due to record-high inflation levels, food prices rocket and its coffers run dry
- Meltdown faced by government, led by president Gotabaya Rajapaksa, is in part caused by Covid crisis and loss of tourism but is compounded by high government spending and tax cuts eroding state revenues, vast debt repayments to China.
12. Govt announces suspension of Biometric Attendance for govt employees
- Union Minister, Jitendra Singh has announced the suspension of Biometric Attendance for govt employees with immediate effect due to rise in Covid cases.
- It will remain suspended till 31st January.
- Apart from this, physical attendance of Govt servants below the level of Under Secretary has been restricted to 50% of the actual strength and rest of the 50% of the staff will work from home.
- DoPT has further ordered to follow staggered timing to avoid over crowding.
Science & Technology
13. Iran announces new space launch amid nuclear talks
- Iran has announced new space launch, in a move likely to irk Western powers amid reviving 2015 nuclear deal.
- Simorgh satellite launcher carried three research cargos into space.
- Iran announced successful test of its most powerful solid fuel satellite launcher Zoljanah, boasting that it can put a 220-kg payload into orbit
- Iran insists its space programme is for civilian and defence purposes only and does not breach the nuclear deal or any other international agreement.