President Kovind reaches Benin
-> President Ram Nath Kovind has reached Benin on the first leg of his three nations' tour to the West African region.
->The seven-day visit is the first high-level tour of any Head of State from India to the three West African countries- Benin, The Gambia and Guinea. Mr Kovind reached the Cardinal Bernadine de Cotonou International Airport in Cotonou, the largest city in Benin this evening.
-> On the last leg of his visit, the President will reach Conakry, the capital of Guinea on 1st August. Mr Kovind will hold delegation-level talks with his counterpart on 2nd August.
Karnataka Assembly Speaker disqualifies 14 rebel MLAs
-> Karnataka Assembly speaker K R Ramesh Kumar disqualified 14 more rebel MLAs under the anti-defection law till the end of the assembly term in 2023, a day ahead of Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa seeking the trust vote in the assembly to prove his majority.
-> Eleven Congress MLAs and three JDS lawmakers faced the axe from the speaker, who pronounced his ruling at a hurriedly called news conference, two days after Yediyurappa took the oath as chief minister after the collapse of the Congress-JDS coalition government.
7th Economic Census begins from Tripura
-> The government will kick off the 7th Economic Census from Tripura. It will be launched in other states and union territories in August and September. The census, conducted by Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) will be held this year after a gap of five years.
-> The data will be collected through door to door survey of each household and commercial establishment under the provisions of Collection of Statistics Act 2008. The fieldwork is expected to be completed by December and the results at the national level is expected to be available by March 2020. The economic census is the only source of information on the significantly large unorganized sector in the country. As per the last Economic Census conducted in 2013, there were 58.5 million establishments employing around 131 million workers.
Prez Trump announces US Intelligence Chief Dan Coats will leave office on Aug 15
-> President Donald Trump has announced that the US intelligence chief Dan Coats will leave office on August 15. Trump tweeted that he plans to nominate Representative John Ratcliffe of Texas as the new Director of National Intelligence.
-> Trump has repeatedly clashed with US intelligence chiefs including Coats over issues ranging from Russian interference in the 2016 election to North Korean denuclearization and Iran.
-> Coats's departure will be the latest in a long series of exits by top Trump administration officials, including defence secretary Jim Mattis, homeland security chief Kirstjen Nielsen, chief of staff John Kelly and top diplomat Rex Tillerson.
SBI bills government Rs 3.2 crore fee
-> Electoral bonds may be fast turning into the biggest funding instrument for political parties, particularly for the BJP, but it is leaving the government of India a tad poorer.
-> The State Bank of India, the sole designated bank for issuance and redemption of electoral bonds by political parties, is charging the Government of India a banking commission which has run to over Rs 3.2 crore as on May 27, 2019.
-> Over Rs 1,700 crore were mobilised through these bonds in the first three months of 2019 itself. The ruling BJP has, so far, appeared to have been the main beneficiary of these bonds. Of the first tranche of electoral bonds worth Rs 222 crore purchased as of March 31, 94.5% or Rs 210 crore went to the BJP. The Congress had only got funds worth Rs 10 crore through bonds in the same period.
Scientists try to cook up ways to grow plants in space stations
-> Super-dwarf wheat variety was planted in a growth chamber called Svet on the space station MIR. US astronaut John Blaha later harvested the first crop of healthy plants grown on Mir, according to NASA. A NASA project officer said the harvest showed that an important agricultural crop had successfully completed an entire life cycle in space.
-> Crew members of Expedition 44 harvested — for the first time — space-grown red romaine lettuce heads, cleaned them with sanitising wipes and ate them raw before dressing the roughage with a bit of extra virgin olive oil and Italian balsamic vinegar. “Tastes good. Kinda like arugula,” said astronaut Scott Kelly. Zucchini was officially grown in space in 2012 in a plastic bag and nutrient solution. The first plant to flourish in space was an Arabidopsis thaliana, a spindly plant with white flowers.
Mary Kom, Simranjit Kaur win gold in President's Cup Boxing Tournament
-> Six-time world champion Mary Kom in 51kg category and Simranjit Kaur in 60kg category grabbed a gold each in 23rd President's Cup Boxing Tournament in Labuan Bajo, Indonesia.
-> The Olympic bronze medallist Mary decimated Australian April Franks 5-0 in finals. Simranjit Kaur defeated Indonesia's Asian Games bronze medallist Hasanah Huswatun 5-0 in the final bout.
IPS officer VK Johri appointed as next BSF DG
-> IPS officer VK Johri has been appointed as the next Director General of Border Security Force. Mr Johri, a 1984-batch Indian Police Service officer of Madhya Pradesh cadre, is presently serving as the Special Secretary in RAW, under the Cabinet Secretariat.
-> He will take over the charge of the BSF from incumbent Rajni Kant Mishra, who retires on 31st of this month. The official order, issued by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet, also stated that Mr Johri has been appointed as an Officer on Special Duty in the Union Home Ministry with immediate effect.
Global Tiger Day observed
-> Global Tiger Day is celebrated across the world on 29th June 2019. This day is observed every year to create awareness about tiger conservation and protection of natural habitat of tigers.
-> Project Tiger was launched in 1973 with the initiative of conserving India's national animal.Tigers are one of the world’s most iconic species. Tigers are considered as an “umbrella species” as their conservation also conserves many other species in the same area. Despite conservation efforts since the 1970s, wild tiger populations showed a rapid decline. In 2010, during the St. Petersburg declaration, tiger range countries had resolved to double tiger numbers by 2022.
Former CM and Meghalaya Assembly Speaker Donkupar Roy dies at 64
-> Meghalaya Assembly Speaker Donkupar Roy passed away at a hospital in Gurgaon following a brief illness, officials said. Roy, the former chief minister of the state.
-> Roy, the former chief minister of the state, was first admitted to a state-run hospital in Shillong before being referred to the Medanta Hospital in Gurgaon, Haryana, where he was undergoing treatment for the last 10 days, his family members said. Meghalaya Chief Minister and National People's Party (NPP) president Conrad K Sangma too expressed grief over Roy's passing away.
65 killed by Boko Haram at funeral in North Nigeria
-> At least 65 people lost their lives after local terror group Boko Haram opened fire on a funeral in Nigeria's northeastern state of Borno.
-> Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari condemned the attack and directed the country's air force and army to begin air patrols and ground operations to hunt down the attackers, a statement released by the president's office said.
Current Affairs Quiz - 29th July 2019
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