1. Cabinet approves MoU between India and UK in the field of Public Administration and Governance Reforms
i. The Union Cabinet has approved Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between India and United Kingdom for Cooperation in the field Public Administration and Governance Reforms.
ii. This MoU was signed between both countries in November, 2015 during Prime Minister Narendra’s official visit to UK. Under this MoU the co-operation will be in areas like sharing good governance practices in public administration, reducing bureaucracy in service delivery and user led service design.
iii. It will also be in areas like Government Process Re-engineering, Public Grievance Redress Mechanism, Building and developing staff capability, Local Government Reforms.
iv. Cooperation in Reforms towards strengthening of social security, Collaboration in strategies for promotion of ethics in Government will be also part of it.
v. The provisions of this MoU will be implemented by a Joint Working Group on Public Administration and Governance.
2. Cabinet approves MoU between ISRO and Kuwait’s ISR for outer space
i. The Union Cabinet has apprised of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) and Kuwait Institute of Scientific Research (KISR) on cooperation in the exploration of outer space and use of outer space technology for peaceful purposes.
ii. This MoU will enable cooperation between both countries for pursuing potential interest in both cooperative and commercial areas.
iii. It will include KISR to use data from Indian Remote Sensing (IRS) satellites for initiating a few research and application projects. Building and launching of remote sensing and communication satellites of Kuwait on commercial terms and Training purpose.
3. Union Cabinet approves amendments of Power Tariff Policy to promote clean
i. The Union Cabinet has approved the proposal of the Union Ministry of Power for amendments in the Power Tariff Policy 2006.
ii. The comprehensive amendments bring required changes for holistic view of the power sector and also to achieve the objectives of Ujwal DISCOM Assurance Yojana (UDAY) with the focus on 4 Es.
iii. These 4 Es are: Electricity for all, Environment for a sustainable future, Efficiency to ensure affordable tariffs, Ensure financial viability and Ease of doing business to attract investments.
4. New bird species named Himalayan Forest Thrush discovered in India
i. Scientists have discovered a new bird species named Himalayan Forest Thrush in northeastern India and adjacent parts of China.
ii. It has been given scientific name Zoothera salimalii after ornithologist and naturalist Salim Ali who has made significant contributions to ornithology in India.
iii. Himalayan Forest Thrush bird was first noticed at different elevations with similarities to other bird species Plain-backed Thrush. But both of them have two different song types.
iv. It has as a longer bill, shorter wings and shorter legs. It is found in the rocky habitats above the tree-line in North eastern Himalayas.
5. 2015 is Earth’s warmest year since 1880: NOAA
i. The globally averaged temperature over land and ocean surfaces for 2015 was the highest among all years since modern record keeping began in 1880.
ii. It was revealed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on 20 January 2016 after an independent analysis.
6. Uttar Pradesh won 2014-2015 Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy
i. Uttar Pradesh on 20 January 2016 won its maiden Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy with a 38-run win over two- time champions Baroda in the final played at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
It was Uttar Pradesh’s ninth straight win in the tournament, including five in the preliminary league phase and three more in the super league stage.
7. PM Narendra Modi released book titled The Z Factor written by Subhash Chandra
i. The Prime Minister Narendra Modi released a book titled The Z Factor: My Journey as the Wrong Man at the Right Time in New Delhi.
ii. The book is the autobiography of the promoter of Essel/ Zee Group Subhash Chandra.
iii. It is a candid memoir of a ‘truly desi’ self-made businessman who came to Delhi at age twenty with seventeen rupees in his pocket. Now, Subhash Chandra has a net worth of 6.3 billion US dollars and annual group revenues of about 3 billion US dollars
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