Important current affairs oct 21 2019

UP Govt. to organise training & performance programme of KHON Ramlila

The Culture Department of Uttar Pradesh government is organising India’s first training and performance programme of world famous KHON Ramlila, a masked form of Ramlila art of Thailand, in collaboration with Thailand government.

Key Highlights

UP Government will prepare some artists from the state for this art, who will be getting training from experts of Thailand as part of cultural exchange programme between two nations. A group of officials of culture department of Thailand government and experts of KHON Ramlila has reached Lucknow to train 15 Indian artists in this form of ancient Ramlila. The trained artists will perform at Grand Deepotsav function which will be organised on 26 October 2019 in Ayodhya, UP and later in the other parts of country also.

About Khon Ramleela

It is a form of masked dance depicting the scenes of Ramlila. It has no dialogues and background voices narrate complete story of Ramayana, one of the major Sanskrit epics of ancient India. The performance in KHON Ramlila’s is also a famous visual delight for its beautiful attire and golden masks. KHON Ramlila of Thailand is included in UNESCO’s list of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Chile declares state emergency in Santiago

President of Chile Sebastian Pinera has declared a state of emergency in Santiago (Capital of Chile), following the worst violence the city has seen in years. The state emergency decision was taken after violent protests over an increase in the price of metro tickets held in the state, following which protesters blocked the railway system and clashed with the police. Protestors clashed with riot police in several parts of Santiago, and attacked the subway system.

Key Highlights

President has clarified that the objective behind emergency declaration is to ensure public order and peace for the seven million inhabitants of Santiago. President Pinera has given all the powers to country’s military for bringing security, peace and harmony in the state. He has also appointed Major General Javier Iturriaga del Campo as the head of national defence. The state of emergency which restricts freedom of movement and assembly has been put in place initially for a period of 15 days. Also at present the curfew would not be imposed but the military would continuously patrol major trouble spots in the state.

NAM Summit, 2019

The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit is to be held in Baku, Azerbaijan. The summit is to be held between October 25 and October 26, 2019. The 18th NAM summit will be preceded by Ministerial meetings and senior official meetings.

Nepal and Bangladesh

Nepal PM Oli and Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina are to attend the summit. Nepal is a founding member of NAM and has been an active participant since its inception. The principles of non-alignment constitute one of the basic tenets of Nepal’s foreign policy


The Non-Alignment Movement was founded in 1961. It was based on Bandung principles that was adopted at the Belgrade Summit (an Afro-Asian Conference) in 1955. It was founded during the collapse of colonial system and independence struggles of Asia, Africa and Latin American countries. The movement worked towards the attainment of independence for many countries. India is a founding member of the NAM summit.

Sri Lanka removed from FATF’s Grey List

Sri Lanka has been removed from ‘Grey List’ of Financial Action Task Force (FATF) following the new measures taken by the country on financial security. The word ‘Grey List’ identified by FATF refers to a jurisdiction with strategic Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) deficiencies.

Key Highlights

The announcement regarding removal of Sri Lanka’s name from the list of countries at risk for money laundering was made by Sri Lankan Minister of Finance Mangala Samaraweera, after a 5-day FATF plenary concluded in Paris, France. FATF, the international terror financing watchdog, noted that Sri Lanka set out a sound framework to bring the commitment of all stakeholders for enhancing AML/CFT standards in order to improve compliance and country rating.


Sri Lanka was first included in FATF’s blacklist in 2011, and by 2012, Sri Lanka was listed in the list as a dangerous country with no commitment to financial security plan. Later in October 2016, FATF subjected Sri Lanka to a review of FATF’s International Cooperation Review Group (ICRG) for assessing the progress of AML/CFT effectiveness in country. However, since 2016, Sri Lankan government together with country’s Central Bank and other financial institutions has taken several measures to ensure the financial security of country. As a result these efforts, Sri Lanka was declared a cooperating state in 2016 and FATF putted Sri Lanka on its grey list from November 2017. The island nation has reported the progress achieved in the implementation of action plan regularly to FATF.

What is Financial Action Task Force (FATF)?

It is a Paris (France) based inter-governmental organisation established in 1989. It is the international terror financing watchdog that combats terrorist financing, money laundering as well as other related threats to integrity of international financial system.

FSSAI guidelines to sweet manufacturers

Ahead of Diwali, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India issued guidelines to the sweet manufacturers. The team interacted with sweet manufacturers and tested food samples. They also gave them a 10-point guidelines.


  • The details of ghee, oil used in the preparation of sweets should be displayed on the box
  • The ingredients and presence of allergens should also be displayed on the label of the sweet
  • The milk sweets and other sweets should not be mixed in assorted gift packs.
  • This is because, the milk sweets have different packaging, shelf life and norms from that of the other sweets
  • The sweet makers should wear gloves, head cover and aprons. They should possess credible fitness certificates. They should also hold water analysis report to assess the quality of water used for preparation.


The FSSAI is an autonomous body under Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. It was established under Foods Safety and Standards Act, 2006. It is responsible to protect and promote public health through regulation and supervision of food safety. The headquarters of FSSAI is located in Delhi and the regional offices are located in Kolkata, Guwahati, Delhi, Mumbai, Cochin and Chennai.

Uzbekistan Investment Summit modeled on Vibrant Gujarat Summit

During the Vibrant Gujarat Summit held by the Gujarat State Government in January 2019, a partnership memorandum was signed by the Uzbekistan President and the Gujarat Government. Following the summit, Uzbekistan sought India’s help for conducting similar event. India extended its support and Gujarat CM Rupani is to visit Uzbekistan to attend the summit.


  • The Gujarat CM will attend India-Uzbekistan regional investment forum.
  • The summit will be of great help for Gujarat pharmaceuticals companies. Gujarat being the hub of pharmaceuticals, can very well utilize the resources of Uzbekistan

Vibrant Gujarat Summit

Vibrant Gujarat is a biennial investors summit that is held by the Government of Gujarat. The purpose of the event is to bring policy makers, investors, corporations and business leaders together. It was begun in 2003. The conventions in the event predominantly include the industrial sectors like Biotech-Pharma, Agro-Processing, Natural Gas and Oil, Mining, Tourism, etc.

India to host Interpol’s General Assembly in 2022

India will be hosting the 91st Interpol General Assembly in 2022. The announcement comes after a proposal in this regard received the overwhelming support of member countries at 2019’s congregation held at Santinago in Chile on 19 October 2019. The proposal was given to Interpol Secretary General Jürgen Stock by Union Home Minister Amit Shah when the two met in New Delhi during Stock’s official visit (August 2019).

Key Highlights

In the ongoing 88th Interpol General Assembly in Santiago, Rishi Kumar Shukla, the director of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) that represents Interpol in India as the country’s national central bureau, moved the proposal which was then put to vote. The CBI director was accompanied by Delhi police commissioner Amulya Patnaik and Madhya Pradesh police chief V K Singh at the general assembly. The 91st Interpol General Assembly, 2022 in India will be held as part of celebrations of 75th anniversary of Indian Independence. Earlier, Interpol (International Criminal Police Organisation) had hosted general assembly, where representatives of all member countries converge, in India in 1997.

About Interpol

It is an international police cooperation organization based in Lyon, France. The organisation has 194 member states and 100 years of experience of international cooperation in policing. It also has 90-million records spread across 17 databases with which it assist law enforcement agencies of its member countries. Interpol is equipped with- incident response teams, a worldwide network of NCBs (Narcotics Control Bureau), command and control centre and secure global data communication channel I-24/7 (Interpol’s secure global police communications system through which databases are accessed). Interpol General Assembly: The general assembly of Interpol is an annual exercise hosted by its member countries. At the general assembly the representatives discusses and deliberates upon all major decisions affecting general policy, working methods, the resources needed for international cooperation and finances.

Sultan of Johor Cup 2019: Great Britain beats India

Great Britain beats India with 2-1 in final to win men’s Sultan of Johor Cup hockey tournament held at Johor Bahru in Malaysia. The Indian junior men’s hockey team suffered defeat as Great Britain score 20 seconds before full-time. Great Britain was this years’ defending country after they were crowned champions in 2018.

Key Highlights

In their road to final, Great Britain had scored just 8 goals in comparison to India’s 23 but the 2018 title-holders have conceded just 5, while India conceded as many as a 12 goals in 5 matches. Top scorer(s)– India Shilanand Lakra (5 goals). With five goals to his name, India’s Shilanand Lakra has been one of the standout performers and remained the highest scorer of tournament. Best player- Japan Kosei Kawabe

About Sultan of Johor Cup

It is an international men’s under–21 field hockey tournament. It started in 2011 and this year is the ninth edition of Sultan of Johor Cup. So far, five teams have emerged victorious. Great Britain is the most successful team now having won the tournament thrice (2015, 2018 2019), followed India (2013 and 2014) and Australia who have all won the tournament twice. In 2019 edition, 6 teams competed in the tournament (including the host nation), namely- India, Australia, Great Britain, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand.

October Big Day: International Bird Survey

The International Bird Survey is being conducted by eBird organization biennially. Once in May and once in October. The aim is to gather information in the form of checklists of birds and share it to the environmental conservation and education institutes. The Cornell University Ornithology Lab, that holds world’s largest birds’ database helped in conducting the survey.

About the survey

  • “Go Out and Count the Birds” is the caption of the survey.
  • The survey invited every citizen in the world. It encouraged them to identify the birds in their area with the help of photos from their smartphones and enter the number of birds they see in the app created by eBird
  • The survey was begun by the Cornell Labs as “Great Backyard Bird Count”
  • The survey done in the month of May is the major survey. However,
  • the survey done in October is equally important as this data is required to learn about the shifts in migration and species at risk. According to the survey, India stood fourth in the first Big October Day and Andhra Pradesh stood fifth in the country.

India-ASEAN Business Summit

On 19 October, 2019, the 4th India-ASEAN Business summit and the India-Philippines Business Conclave was organized. President Ram Nath Kovind who is on a 7-day official visit to Philippine and Japan addressed the summit.

Highlights of the address

  • ASEAN-India trade relations are important for India to achieve its Act East Policy. The ASEAN-India trade increased by 19% in 2018 reaching 96.79 billion USD. India targets to increase the trade to 200 billion USD by 2022.
  • The Indian investment in Philippines has grown especially in concrete projects like LNG pipelines, waste management solutions and airport terminals
  • The major gain between India and Philippines relations has been in IT-BPO sector. Leading Indian IT companies have created job opportunities in Manila by setting up enterprises.
  • The “Make in India” infrastructure program of India and “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure initiative of India have immense opportunities.

New Kiln technology in Punjab: 70% emissions cut

Following orders from NGT (National Green Tribunal) and CPCB (Central Pollution Control Board) the Punjab Government had ordered the closure of traditional kilns in March 2019. This was mainly to control the toxicity of the NCR (National Capital Region). The stubble burning, industrial and kiln smoke from Punjab, brought by the retreating monsoon during this time, slogged Delhi making lives difficult. Schools are closed and the routine normal life is highly disrupted.

Scenario in Punjab

The new Kiln Technology cuts the emissions by 70-80%. It also saves fuel for the users. The districts of Punjab like Barnala and Sangpur have seen 100% conversion. Around 800-900 kilns in Punjab are yet to convert to the new technology according to Department of Science and Technology (DST). The kiln industry in Punjab employs 5 lakh workers. It contributes to 8% of brick production in the country producing 15-20 billion bricks.


The new technology is being implemented by the DST. The DST provides technical assistance to the traditional kilns to get converted. This is being done through the Punjab State Council for Science and Technology

About the Technology

In the new kiln technology, the bricks are arranged in zig-zag pattern. This allows hot air to cover long path unlike traditional kilns. The heat transfer is improved due to zig-zag pattern. This makes the operation more efficient and reduces coal consumption by 20%. It also uses fans to regulate air.

October 20: World Statistics Day

The World Statistics Day was celebrated for the first time in 2010. It was declared by the United Nations Statistical Commission. It is celebrated once in 5 years. India celebrates Statistics Day on 29th June, on the birthday of the legend statistician Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis. The next World Statistics Day is to be celebrated on October 20, 2020. On October 15, 2015 the second World Statistics Day was celebrated under the Theme: Better Data, Better Lives.


Statistics describe reality of people’s every day life. It is essential for framing sound social and economic policies. According to the United Nations, Statics is the path finder for solution as well as a veritable tool in assessing the extent of level of development of a country in a given period of rime. The information obtained from statistics is used for central and local financial allocation, and use planning, providing education facilities, health care planning, etc. Statistics also help to monitor and evaluate ongoing economic reforms.

IMNEX-2019: India Myanmar Naval Exercise

The India Myanmar Naval Exercise called IMNEX-2019 is being organised in Visakhapatnam from 19 to 22 October in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh. The opening ceremony of the second edition of Indo-Myanmar joint naval exercise  was conducted onboard INS Ranvijay.

About IMNEX-2019

  • Myanmar naval ships UMS Sin Phyu Shin (F-14) and UMS Tabinshweti (773) arrived at Visakhapatnam and would engage in professional interaction with Indian Navy personnel for sharing of expertise on various maritime issues between both the navies. This year’s edition includes increased scope and complexity and is a testimony of growing maritime cooperation between two navies. The exercise would be conducted in two phases:
  • Harbour phase– which includes visits to Indian Naval units, training and maintenance facility at Visakhapatnam.
  • Sea Phase– During this phase Indian Navy’s INS Kuthar, a missile corvette and INS Ranvijay, a guided-missile destroyer will be carrying out a joint exercise with Myanmar ships UMS Tabinshweti, a corvette and UMS Sin Phyu Shin, a frigate in the Bay of Bengal. Joint exercise will also encompass a variety of operations such as flying exercises using integral helicopter, seamanship evolutions at sea and anti-air and surface firing exercises



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