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Evening News Digest: 12 Aug 2018

International Youth Day: 12 August

  • August 12 is celebrated as International Youth Day by United Nations.
  • It is celebrated to draw awareness about legal and cultural issues surrounding the youth of today.
  • Theme for 2018: Safe Spaces for Youth
  • It was first observed on 12 Aug 2000.
  • According to UN:
    • There are currently 1.8 billion young people between the ages of 10 and 24 in the world.
    • This is the largest youth population ever. But 1 in 10 of the world’s children live in conflict zones and 24 million of them are out of school.
    • Political instability, labour market challenges and limited space for political and civic participation have led to increasing isolation of youth in societies.

VS Naipaul: Nobel Prize winner novelist passes away

  • The British writer and Nobel Prize winner for Literature, Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul died at his home in London at the age of 85.
  • In addition to the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2001, VS Naipaul also won the Booker Prize in 1971.
  • He received a knighthood from Queen Elizabeth in 1989.
  • He received Booker Prize in 1971 for the book In a Free State.
  • He received Nobel Prize 2001 for the book Half a Life.

Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces: President-elect of UN General Assembly

  • The United Nations (UN) General Assembly has picked Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces, Ecuador's minister for foreign affairs and human mobility, to be its next president.
  • She will succeed Slovakia's Miroslav Lajcak and preside over the 73rd session starting from September. 
  • Since 1945, the Assembly has elected only three women as presidents:
    • Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit of India (1953)
    • Angie Brooks of Liberia (1969)
    • Sheikha Haya Rashed Al-Khalifa of Bahrain (2006).
  • UN General Assembly
    • Established in 1945 under the Charter of the United Nations, the General Assembly occupies a central position as the chief deliberative, policymaking and representative organ of the United Nations.
    • Comprising all 192 Members of the United Nations it provides a unique forum for multilateral discussion of the full spectrum of international issues covered by the Charter.

Civil Aviation Ministry nods proposal for setting up of Water aerodrome

  • The Civil Aviation Ministry has approved a proposal for setting up of water aerodrome in Chilika lake in Odisha.
  • The move comes as a part of the union ministry’s attempt to develop water aerodromes near locations of tourist and religious importance in the country with two other projects being Sardar Sarovar Dam and Sabarmati River Front in Gujarat.
  • The Airports Authority of India has already identified the sites in Odisha, Gujarat, Assam, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh where water aerodrome would be developed.
  • What is an aerodrome?
    • An aerodrome or airdrome is a location from which aircraft flight operations take place, regardless of whether they involve air cargo, passengers, or neither.

Centre releases ‘Digital North East Vision 2022’

  • Union IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad released the 'Vision Document' for a digital North East by 2022 that aims to enhance peoples' lives by capacity building of government staff and doubling BPO strength in the region. 
  • The document identifies eight digital thrust areas:
    • Digital infrastructure,
    • Digital services,
    • Digital empowerment,
    • Promotion of electronics manufacturing,
    • Promotion of IT and IT enabled services including BPOs,
    • Digital payments,
    • Innovation & startups,
    • Cyber security. 

Israel opens Visa Application Centre in Kolkata

  • To encourage more Indian travellers to visit Israel, that country has opened a visa application centre in the city for tourists from West Bengal and the north eastern states.
  • India has recorded a half yearly growth of 82 per cent in tourists visiting Israel from January to June this year as compared to the same period in 2015 and has become one of the best performing markets in Asia for Israel.
  • The Israeli Ministry of Tourism will be conducting a roadshow in Kolkata on August 29 to increase the interest for visiting the country among consumers and trade fraternity.
  • Major attractions in Israel:
    • Historical city of Jerusalem
    • Beach city of Tel Aviv
    • Dead Sea - the lowest point on earth
    • Red Sea in Eilat

Sports Ministry clears 804-member Indian contingent for Asian Games

  • The Sports Ministry has cleared an 804-member Indian contingent which includes 572 athletes.
  • The athletes will have a contingent of 312 men and 260 women.
  • They will take part in 36 sports.
  • Asian Games 2018
    • The 2018 Asian Games, is a pan-Asian multi-sport event scheduled to be held from 18 August to 2 September 2018 in the Indonesian cities of Jakarta and Palembang.
    • Also for the first time, eSports and canoe polo will be contested as a demonstration sports.
    • South Korea and North Korea will be competing in some events as a unified team under the title "Korea" (COR). Both nations will also march together under a unified flag during the opening and closing ceremonies.

Internet domain names in Indian languages soon

  • The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the non-profit corporation with the responsibility for Internet's Domain Name System (DNS) management worldwide, has been on the job to support domain names in numerous languages spoken in India.
  • Work is on for nine Indian scripts - Bengali, Devanagari, Gujarati, Gurmukhi, Kannada, Malayalam, Oriya, Tamil and Telugu.
  • The proposals for six scripts - Devanagari, Gujarati, Gurmukhi, Kannada, Oriya and Telugu - are already released for public comment.

Gitta Mittal becomes first woman CJ of J&K HC

  • Justice Gita Mittal was sworn in as the first woman Chief Justice of Jammu and Kashmir High Court on Aug 11.
  • Justice Mittal earlier served as a Delhi High Court judge for 14 years, out of which 15 months were as the acting Chief Justice.

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