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Evening News Digest: 25 September 2018

Andhra Pradesh tops Ease of Living Index

  • Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Madhya Pradesh have been awarded the three best performing states under AMRUT (Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation) on Ease of Living Index.
    • Launched in June 2015, AMRUT aims at ensuring robust sewage networks, water supply and other infrastructure to improve the quality of life of people in urban areas.
    • The Ease of Living Index seeks to assist cities in undertaking a 360-degree assessment of their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
    • It was decided in June 2017 to rank 116 cities (all smart cities and million plus cities) based on the liveability parameters.
  • Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs conduct the survey on mainly three parameters with the total weightage of 100:
    • Infrastructure: 45
    • Governance: 25
    • Social: 25
    • Economy: 5
  • This measurement will motivate states to work on weaker areas.

India to organise 'Gandhi March' in Netherlands

  • India will organise 'Gandhi March' in Hague (Netherland) to celebrate 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.
  • 2 October is also celebrated as International Day of Non-Violence.
  • The Netherlands has a special connection to India and Mahatma Gandhi. There are around thirty streets in the country named after Mahatma Gandhi.
  • Indian government has also announced 2 years celebration to commemorate the 150th year of Gandhi’s birthday.

Statue of Nelson Mandela unveiled at United Nations

  • A statue of Nelson Mandela has been unveiled at the United Nations (New York) to honour the late South African leader's birth.
  • 2018 marks the 100th anniversary of Mandela's birth, and the U.N. is declaring 2019-2028 the "Nelson Mandela Decade of Peace.
  • Nelson Mandela
    • Mandela became a symbol of the anti-Apartheid movement. In 1964 he was sentenced to life in prison for conspiring to overthrow the state. 
    • He was imprisoned for almost 30 years in Robben Island of South Africa.
    • In February 1990, Mandela was released from prison as the system began to crumble.
    • In 1993, he and South African President Frederik Willem de Klerk were named winners of the Nobel Peace Prize. 
    • In 1994, Mandela became the first Black African president of South Africa.

UAE to host Interfaith Alliance Forum in November

  • The UAE will host the Interfaith Alliance Forum in the nation's capital, Abu Dhabi on 19th and 20th November.
  • Various international institutions are participating including Pontifical Gregorian University, UNICEF's #ENDviolence global initiative, Religions for Peace International, Arigatou International, and Shanti Ashram among others.
  • The Forum's theme will focus on community security and children's online safety.
  • The Interfaith Alliance Forum coincides with World Children's Day, celebrated on 20th November, highlighting the importance of unifying views among religions and cultures to ensure the protection of children.

Ibrahim Mohamed Solih wins Maldives Presidential Elections

  • Opposition leader Ibrahim Mohamed Solih won the Maldives' presidential election and this victory is significant as he defeated the incumbent president Abdulla Yameen.
  • Solih had the backing of a united opposition trying to oust Yameen.
  • The voting was held in Maldives as well as Sri Lanka and Malaysia.
  • The election was closely watched by India, China and the US as Maldives although being a small country has a huge strategic value.
  • The outgoing president Yameen in the last two years had shifted it alliance towards China and it became a problem for India.
  • By the victory of Mohammed Solih, India has got an opportunity to establish once again a healthy relation with strategically important Indian Ocean neighbor. 

India sweep Serbia Junior and Cadet Open of Table Tennis

  • In Table Tennis, India have swept the team titles in the girls and cadet boys category at the 2018 Serbia Junior and Cadet Open in Belgrade. 
  • It was held in Serbia’s capital Belgrade.
  • Delhi's Payas Jain won the singles.
  • Payas and Vishwa Deenadaylan won the team event title.

Luka Modric wins FIFA World Player of the Year Award 2018

  • Real Madrid's Luka Modric claimed FIFA's The Best award for 2018 to end Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi's decade-long hold on world football's top player prize.
  • Modric becomes the first Croatian player to win the FIFA award for The Best.
  • He was instrumental in winning Real Madrid's third Champions League title in as many seasons, while he captained Croatia to their first World Cup final, winning the Golden Ball at the tournament.
  • Real Madrid's Thibaut Courtois was voted the best goalkeeper.

Instagram co-founders resign from social media company

  • The co-founders of Instagram are resigning from their positions with the social media company without explanation.
  • Chief Executive Kevin Systrom and Chief Technical Officer Mike Krieger are planning to leave the company in few weeks to explore their curiosity and creativity again.
  • Facebook bought Instagram in 2012 for $1 billion.

Nutrition norms issued to tackle severe acute malnutrition

  • National Technical Board on Nutrition (NTBN) under Ministry of women and Child Development has issued guidelines for severe acute malnutrition.
  • It is India’s first-ever guidelines for nutritional management of children suffering from severe acute malnutrition (SAM).
  • Guidelines:
    • The guidelines outline the role of anganwadi workers and auxillary nurse midwives (ANMs) in identifying severely wasted children, segregating those with oedema or medical complications and sending them to the nearest health facility or nutrition rehabilitation centre.
    • The remaining children are enrolled into “community based management”, which includes provision of nutrition, continuous monitoring of growth, administration of antibiotics and micro-nutrients as well as counselling sessions and imparting of nutrition and health education.
    • According to the recommendations, anganwadi workers have to provide modified morning snacks, hot cooked meals and take home ration for SAM children.
    • The emphasis on freshly prepared food as well as locally procured ingredients clears the air on differences within the government on what form of food should be given at anganwadis.
    • According to the National Family Health Survey-4, 7.5%, or 8 million, of children aged under five years have severe wasting.

'Alternative Nobel' 2018 awarded to three jailed Saudi human rights activists

  • Three jailed Saudi human rights activists have been named winners of "the alternative Nobel prize" award, along with two anti-corruption activists, a farmer, and an agricultural scientist.
  • Abdullah al-Hamid, Mohammad Fahad al-Qahtani and Waleed Abu al-Khair were jointly awarded a one million kronor ($113,400) cash award by the Right Livelihood Award Foundation.
  • Right Livelihood Award
    • Created in 1980, the Right Livelihood Award honours efforts that are usually ignored by the selection committee of Nobel Peace Prize.
  • The 2018 honorary award was given to Thelma Aldana of Guatemala and Colombia's Ivan Velasquez "for their innovative work in exposing abuse of power and prosecuting corruption."
  • The other two winners were Yacouba Sawadogo, a farmer from Burkina Faso who transformed an almost 40-hectare piece of inhospitable land into forest, and Australian Tony Rinaudo, an agronomist who has taken on the role of combating the Sahel region's extreme deforestation.

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