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World in Focus ( Dec ’17 – Jan ’18 )

World in Focus ( Dec ’17 - Jan ’18 )

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Dec 16: The World Bank approved $300 million loan to modernise agriculture in Punjab, create better prospects for farmers and ensure better quality and safer food at lower prices to consumers.

Dec 17: Maryam Nawaz, the daughter of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, was named among the top 11 powerful women of the world by New York Times.

Dec 17: UAE-based Taekwondo black-belt Ammar Ashfaq won the gold medal in the 12th National Taekwondo Championship.

Dec 17: The Peshawar High Court (PHC) ruled that forced abortion is a strong ground for dissolution of marriage on the basis of cruelty.

Dec 17: Ushna Sohail won ladies singles title in the Begum Kulsum National Ranking Tennis Championship.

Dec 17: The Balochistan government presented Allama Iqbal literary provincial awards and appreciation certificates to 105 writers, poets, intellectuals, drama writers and researchers in recognition of their services in the field of literature in Urdu and local languages.

Dec 17: Najeeb Ullah Khan of Pakistan secured first position while compatriot Muhammad Tanveer finished third in the Laser Standard Class of competition of the Al Bareh International Sailing Regatta 2017, held in Bahrain.

Dec 18: The National Security Committee (NSC) said Pakistan could not accept the unilateral decisions taken by the Trump administration on shifting the US embassy to Jerusalem and accepting it as the capital of Israel.

Dec 18: Senior journalist Absar Alam relinquished the charge as chairman of Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) immediately after the Lahore High Court declared his appointment illegal.

Dec 18: Pakistan won one silver and four bronze medals in the Commonwealth (CW) Wrestling Championship freestyle competitions, held in Johannesburg, South Africa. Pakistan also grabbed six bronze in Greco Roman style competitions.

Dec 19: COAS Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa attended an ‘in-camera session’ of the Senate Committee of the Whole and briefed the legislators on national security issues.

Dec 20: Pakistan recorded the highest increase in mobile internet speed among some of the world’s most populous countries in 2017, according to a report published by speedtest.net.

The report observed that Pakistan ranked first with a 56.2% jump in mobile download speed during the past 12 months, followed by India at 42.4% and Brazil with 27.6%.

Dec 21: A list of proscribed groups attached with the Amritsar Declaration of the Heart of Asia Istanbul Process Ministerial Conference in Dec 2016 was dropped from the recent Baku Declaration.

Dec 21: The 10th edition of the International Urdu Conference, organised by the Arts Council of Pakistan Karachi, kicked off.

Dec 22: Ministry of Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony issued notifications to all federal and provincial government departments that Arabic names such as Allah, Nabi, Rasool, A’yah, Masjid, Namaz, Salah, Roza and Soam should be used as they are.

Dec 22: The federal government issued special permits to King of Bahrain Sheikh Hamad bin Isa bin Salman Al-Khalifa and five of his associates to hunt the internationally protected houbara bustard during the season 2017-18.

Dec 23: A three-day Speakers Conference, focusing on parliamentary cooperation for peace, connectivity and prosperity in the region, began in Islamabad with speakers from Afghanistan, China, Iran, Pakistan, Russia and Turkey present along with their respective parliamentary delegations.

Dec 23: Stakeholders of Pakistan’s gem and jewellery sector set up the first-ever ‘Gem Bazaar’ to showcase precious and semi-precious gemstones found in the country.

Dec 23: A Pakistani student, Umair Asif, won the Best Thesis award at the Seoul National University, South Korea.

Dec 23: Pakistan and Iran agreed on joint aerial monitoring of their border to cope with any possible danger and avoid any untoward situation.

Dec 24: Shahid Khaqan Abbasi became the first prime minister of the country to board a submarine in the open sea, and also conduct diving and surfacing procedures after which he earned the traditional Dolphin insignia of the navy, which is bestowed upon submariners.

Dec 25: Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif inaugurated the Pakistan Kidney and Liver Institute (PKLI) and Research Centre in Lahore.

Dec 25: Pakistan’s first and only female Pride of Performance Hafiza Qaria Rubina Khalid passed away.

Dec 25: In a major diplomatic success, Pakistan’s stance on the Kashmir issue was incorporated in the joint declaration of the first-ever Speakers’ Conference held in Islamabad.

Dec 25: The high-powered National Implementation Committee (NIC) on Fata Reforms endorsed the merger of tribal regions with northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Dec 25: Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) regained the Quaid-i-Azam Trophy National Cricket Championship crown.

Dec 25: Favourite four-year-old bay colt Big Bravo won the Quaid-i-Azam Gold Cup.

Dec 26: Laiba Ijaz, the current under-15 No. 1 squash player, clinched gold medal for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the Quaid-i-Azam Inter-Provincial Games.

Dec 26: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Chairman Justice (Retd) Javed Iqbal ordered an immediate inquiry into the companies held by 435 Pakistanis in tax havens abroad, exposed in the Panama Papers.

Dec 26: Chief Justice Saqib Nisar ordered all the unregistered medical colleges throughout the country to discontinue the admission process at once.

Dec 26: The first China-Afghanistan-Pakistan Foreign Ministers’ Dialogue was held in Beijing. China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Afghan Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani and Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif attended the meeting.

Dec 26: President of Pakistan Mamnoon Hussain, on the advice of the Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, appointed Rana Muhammad Afzal Khan the Minister of State for Finance.

Dec 26: The government appointed Miftah Ismail as Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance and Economic Affairs with immediate effect.

Dec 27: The Elections Act, 2017, a constitutional amendment bill that makes provisions for fresh delimitation of constituencies on the basis of provisional census results, was signed into law. The Amendment was passed by the National Assembly on Nov 16, and cleared by the Senate on Dec 19.

Dec 27: Google Doodle celebrated the birthday of iconic Urdu poet Mirza Ghalib on his 220th birth anniversary.

Dec 27: The British Backpacker Society, an adventure travel project, declared Pakistan to be the world’s leading adventure travel destination.

Dec 28: Air Commodore Haseeb Gul and Air Commodore Zulfiqar Ahmad Qureshi were promoted to the rank of Air Vice Marshal.

Dec 29: Indian authorities declared Syed Manzoor Hussain Gillani, a renowned jurist of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and a former acting chief justice of the AJK Supreme Court, ‘persona non grata’.

Dec 30: Former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC), Gen (Retd) Khalid Shamim Wynne, died in a road accident on the Islamabad-Lahore Motorway.

Jan 01: Ties between Pakistan and the United States, strained for the past many weeks, suffered a New Year setback when President Donald Trump accused Islamabad of being a liar, inviting a series of sharp responses from the Pakistani leadership, in his first message directed at a foreign nation in the new year.

Jan 01: The Punjab Food Authority (PFA) prohibited food industry to use non-food grade colour on pulses under the Punjab Pure Food Regulations 2017.

Jan 02: Pakistan became the largest recipient of Chinese concessional loans in the world with over $4 billion soft loan already approved for ongoing infrastructure projects and an additional $8 billion being considered for upgrading railway line under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Jan 02: The White House suspended $255 million of military aid to Pakistan, a move seen as the first step to implementing President Donald Trump’s pledge to tighten economic restrictions on Pakistan.

Jan 03: Pakistan Navy test-fired Harbah naval cruise missile, PN’s newly commissioned Fast Attack Craft (Missile) that is a surface-to-surface anti-ship missile having land attack capability, from PNS Himmat in the North Arabian Sea.

Jan 03: The United States placed Pakistan on a special watch list for severe violations of religious freedom.

What is Special Watch List?

The Special Watch List is for countries that engage in or tolerate severe violations of religious freedom but may not rise to the level of the CPC. The Special Watch List designation is being seen as a step below designating Pakistan as Country of Particular Concern, which would have automatically kicked in economic and political sanctions.

Pakistan, notably, is the first ever country to be placed in this list, which is a new category created by the Frank R. Wolf International Religious Freedom Act of 2016. The 2016 Frank R. Wolf International Religious Freedom Act amended the IRF Act to require the President to designate a ‘Special Watch List’ of countries deemed not to meet all of the CPC criteria but who engaged in or tolerated severe violations of religious freedom. IRF stands for International Religious Freedom.

Jan 04: The Trump administration announced to suspend its entire security assistance to Pakistan until “it proves its commitment to fight all terrorist groups operating in the region”.

Jan 04: As many as 50 vice chancellors of public and private universities from all over Pakistan, with the exception of Punjab, participated in the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan (HEC) meeting in Lahore.

Jan 04: Chief Economist Dr Nadeem Javaid resigned.

Jan 05: Senior progressive Pashto poet and chief of Khyber Pakhto Adabi Jirga Khairur Rahman a.k.a. Muntazir Baba died. He was 68.

Jan 05: Eminent poet Rasa Chughtai died. He was 89.

Jan 05: Zubaida Tariq, lovingly known as Zubaida Aapa to all those who never missed her cooking shows to note down recipes and valuable tips, died.

Jan 05: Former chief of the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and leading political figure of yesteryears retired Air Marshal Asghar Khan died. He was 96.

Jan 05: China’s Deputy Head of Mission Lijian Zhao was appointed the focal person for ongoing power projects under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Jan 06: The Punjab government appointed Prof Dr Zakria Zakar as provisional Vice Chancellor of the Punjab University.

World in Focus ( Dec ’17 - Jan ’18 )Jan 07: Associate Adviser at Wafaqi Mohtasib Syeda Viquar-un-Nisa Hashmi was appointed the commissioner for transgender persons to redress the grievances of the community, another first in the history of Pakistan.

Jan 07: The Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) succeeded in retaining their double crowns in the 55th National Badminton Championship, as both Men’s and Women’s teams of WAPDA outclassed their opponents in the finals.

Jan 07: The Indus canyon, a deep fissure located about 150 kilometres southeast of Karachi in the Exclusive Economic Zone of Pakistan, was declared a marine protected area by the ministry of climate change.

With an area of 27,607 square kilometres, the Indus river canyon is the second marine protected area (MPA) in the country, after Astola Island, and the largest MPA in the Arabian Sea.

Jan 08: The Peshawar High Court granted bail to Maulana Sufi Mohammad, chief of the banned Tehreek-i-Nifazi Shariat-i-Muhammadi (TNSM), in two cases registered in Swat district more than eight years ago.

Jan 09: Ace rider Mohammad Sajjad earned Champion Rider of the Year award (2017).

Jan 09: Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Revenue Haroon Akhtar Khan was elevated to the status of federal minister for revenue.

Jan 09: The PTI government placed seminaries in the province under the supervision of the elementary and secondary education department, in a major policy shift meant to mainstream them.

Currently, 3,028 seminaries are functioning in the province.

Jan 09: Chaudhry Mehmood Bashir Virk was appointed federal law minister.

Jan 09: Chief Minister Balochistan Nawab Sanaullah Zehri resigned from office instead of contesting a no-trust motion.

Jan 10: The government nominated Dr Ishrat Husain as Pakistan’s candidate for the coveted position of chairman International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC).

About IMFC

The IMFC is the highest policy-making body of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and is responsible for advising and reporting to the IMF Board of Governors on matters pertaining to the supervision and management of the international monetary and financial system.

Jan 10: Religious scholars passed a fatwa that the azaan can be recited to newborns before they have been bathed.

Jan 10: The gruesome murder of Zainab, a seven-year-old girl from Kasur, rocked the nation, sparking nation-wide protests.

Jan 11: Canadian Richard Morin assumed the charge of chief executive officer (CEO) of Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX), becoming the first foreign national head of the local equity market.

Jan 11: Rear Admiral Zaka-ur-Rehman assumed the command of Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA) as director general (DG).

Jan 12: In a landmark development, the National Assembly passed a bill to extend jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and the Peshawar High Court (PHC) to the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata).

Jan 12: The Supreme Court dissolved the 35-member Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC) and substituted it with a nine-member ad-hoc council headed by its former SC judge Justice Shakirullah Jan.

Jan 13: Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo, the consensus candidate of all but two parties in the Balochistan Assembly, comfortably won the election of the new chief minister of the province against PkMAP’s Syed Liaquat Agha.

World in Focus ( Dec ’17 - Jan ’18 ) Jan 14: A 75-year-old professor and main leader of the Altaf Hussain-led Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), Hasan Zafar Arif, was found dead in his car.

Jan 14: Noted billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates committed that his Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will increase financial aid for Pakistan.

Jan 14: Anees Ahmad Khan, son of the late Ashfaq Ahmad Khan and Bano Qudsia, died. He was the vice chairman of Highnoon Laboratories Ltd.

INTERNATIONAL

Dec 16: “Youthquake” which is defined as “a significant cultural, political or social change arising from the actions or influence of young people” was crowned as Oxford Dictionaries’ word of the year 2017.

Dec 16: The World Health Organization declared Gabon a “polio-free country,” given the lack of new reported or suspected cases in the central African country.

Dec 16: Rahul Gandhi took over as president of the main opposition party Congress, becoming the sixth member of the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty to head the party.

Dec 17: India won their eighth straight ODI series when they defeated Sri Lanka in the third One-Day International.

Dec 17: Real Madrid beat Gremio, the South American champions, to retain the FIFA Club World Cup, thanks to a great goal by Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo.

Dec 17: French sailor Francois Gabart smashed 6 days and 10 hours off sailing around the world record producing a previously unthinkable time of 42 days, 16 hours, 40 minutes and 35 seconds.

Dec 18: The United States vetoed a United Nations Security Council’s (UNSC) draft resolution rejecting the recent recognition by US President Donald Trump of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and his plans to move the American embassy to the city.

Dec 18: The UN human rights chief said that Myanmar had clearly ‘planned’ the violent attacks on its Rohingya minority, and warned the crackdown could possibly amount to ‘genocide’.

Dec 18: Australia won back the Ashes after defeating England in the third Test played in Perth.

Dec 18: Egyptian squash stars Mohamed ElShorbagy and Raneem El Welily emerged the 2017 world champions.

Dec 19: The African National Congress chose Cyril Ramaphosa, an anti-apartheid hero and business tycoon as its new leader, positioning him to become Jacob Zuma’s successor.

Ramaphosa was a protégé of Nelson Mandela.

Dec 19: Belgium appointed Dominique Mineur, currently its ambassador to the United Arab Emirates, to Riyadh from next summer, making her the first woman ambassador in the Saudi Arabian capital.

Dec 20: European Union’s top court ruled that Uber should be regulated like a taxi company and not a technology service, a decision that crimps its activities around Europe and could weigh on other app-based companies too.

Dec 20: The Republican-controlled US House of Representatives gave final approval to the biggest overhaul of the US tax code in 30 years, sending a sweeping $1.5 trillion bill to President Donald Trump for his signature.

Dec 21: Poland and Britain signed a new defence treaty as PM Theresa May sought to deepen ties with Warsaw ahead of her country’s exit from the EU by March 2019.

Dec 21: The United Nations General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to repudiate US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

The UN body voted 128-9 to declare Mr Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital ‘null and void’. Thirty-five nations abstained.

Background

The draft resolution rejecting US move was sent to UNGA after it was vetoed by United States at UN Security Council (UNSC), although all other 14 Council members voted in favour. The resolution was drafted following US President Donald Trump’s announcement of shifting US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and officially recognising ancient disputed city as capital of Israel.

Dec 21: The United States imposed sanctions on 52 people and entities for alleged human rights violations and corruption, including Myanmar military officer Maung Maung Soe, who oversaw a brutal crackdown against the Rohingya Muslim minority.

Dec 21: Nasa astronaut Bruce McCandless, the first person to fly freely and untethered in space, died. He was 80.

He was famously photographed in 1984 flying with a hefty spacewalker’s jetpack, alone in the cosmic blackness above a blue Earth. He travelled more than 300 feet away from the space shuttle Challenger during the spacewalk.

Dec 22: Indian opener Rohit Sharma equalled the record for fastest century in Twenty20 International cricket from only 35 balls.

Dec 22: Britain will phase out the current burgundy-coloured and return to blue passports after leaving the European Union in 2019.

World in Focus ( Dec ’17 - Jan ’18 )Dec 23: The UN Security Council unanimously imposed new sanctions on North Korea, following its latest intercontinental ballistic missile test.

Dec 23: The government of Congo Republic agreed a ceasefire with rebels in the southeast region of Pool, halting a 15-year conflict that rights groups say has cost dozens of lives and forced tens of thousands to flee.

Dec 23: World No.5 Marwan El Shorbagy of Egypt overcame compatriot Mohamed Abouelghar to win the final of Pakistan Open Men’s Squash Championship.

Dec 24: China’s home-grown AG600, codenamed ‘Kunlong’, the world’s largest amphibious aircraft in production, took to the skies for its maiden flight.

Dec 25: Ethiopian Airlines operated their first-ever flight within Africa to be staffed by an all-female crew. The flight took from Addis Ababa in Ethiopia to reach Lagos in Nigeria.

Dec 25: US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley announced a historic reduction in the United Nations biennial operating budget. The plan calls for a $285 million cut for the 2018-19 fiscal year.

Dec 25: Pope Francis in his Christmas address called for peace in Jerusalem and highlighted the plight of children scarred by conflict, having earlier urged the world’s Catholics not to ignore the plight of migrants.

Dec 27: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan signed agreements, in Tunis, on defence, investment and the environment with his Tunisian counterpart.

Dec 28: Preet Didbal became the first-ever Sikh woman mayor of Northern California’s Yuba City.

Dec 28: Lok Sabha, powerful lower house of the Indian parliament, approved a bill making the Triple Talaq (practice of instant divorce) illegal and punishable with up to three years imprisonment for offending husbands.

Dec 28: The United States and Turkey announced the resumption of full visa services for each other’s citizens.

Dec 28: China launched the world’s largest human genome research project to document the genetic makeup of one lakh people to help generate the precision medicines in future.

Dec 29: Liberians elected a former football star George Weah as the country’s president, the country’s first democratic transfer of power in seven decades scarred by civil wars, political assassinations and an Ebola crisis.

Dec 29: Turkey and Russia signed an accord regarding the supply of Russian S-400 surface-to-air missiles to Turkey, finalising a deal the two countries have been working on for more than a year.

Dec 29: Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo was named Globe Soccer’s Best Player for the second year in a row and the fourth time overall.

Dec 29: The UN Security Council denied international port access to four North Korean ships suspected of carrying or having transported goods banned by international sanctions targeting Pyongyang.

Dec 31: The World Health Organisation (WHO) declared outbreak of human cases of influenza A/H1 N1 a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC) under IHR 2005 in Pakistan. The WHO also issued an advisory to sensitise the health authorities to strengthen and improve the level of preparedness in prevention, control and management of influenza.

World in Focus ( Dec ’17 - Jan ’18 )Jan 01: Israel indicted a 16-year-old Palestinian girl Ahed Tamimi, who was filmed punching the soldier at the entrance to her family home in a village in the occupied West Bank, on charges including assault.

Jan 01: Syrian President Bashar al-Assad appointed General Ali Abdullah Ayoub as defence minister, Mohammed Mazen Ali Yousef as industry minister and Imad Abullah Sarah as information minister.

Jan 01: The United Nations Cultural Agency UNESCO accepted the “bird language” of Black Sea villagers of Turkey as an endangered part of world heritage in need of urgent protection.

Jan 01: Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates introduced value-added tax, a first for the Gulf which has long prided itself on its tax-free, cradle-to-grave welfare system.

Value Added Tax (VAT)

VAT is a type of consumption tax that is placed on product whenever value is added at stage of production and at point of retail sale. It is one of the most common types of consumption tax implemented in more than 150 countries around the world. It is charged at each step of the ‘supply chain’. Final consumers generally bear the VAT cost while businesses collect and account for the tax, in a way acting as a tax collector on behalf of the government.

Jan 02: Liverpool and Egypt striker Mohamed Salah was named Arab Player of the Year for 2017.

Jan 03: The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) welcomed six new non-permanent members — Equatorial Guinea, Ivory Coast, Kuwait, the Netherlands, Peru and Poland.

Did You Know?

Each year, the General Assembly elects five non-permanent members (out of ten in total) for a two-year term. The ten non-permanent seats are distributed on a regional basis:

1. Five for African and Asian countries;
2. One for Eastern European countries;
3. Two for Latin American and Caribbean countries;
4. Two for Western European and other countries.

Article 23 of the UN Charter concerns the composition of the Security Council.

Rule 142-144 of the Rules of Procedure of the General Assembly concerns the Security Council elections.

Commentaries on the Charter, the Repertoire of Practice of the Security Council, and the Repertory of Practice of the UN Organs, may all provide additional information.

Jan 03: The leader of the Mormon Church, Thomas Monson, died. He was 90.

Jan 03: Iceland became the first country to make it illegal to pay men more than women.

Jan 05: Egypt international Mohamed Salah won the 2017 CAF African Player of the Year award.

Jan 05: John W. Young, who walked on the moon, commanded the first space shuttle mission and became the first person to fly in space six times, died.

Jan 06: Roger Federer guided Switzerland to their third success in the mixed teams in Hopman Cup.

Jan 06: Ramkrishna Meena, the son of a BJP MLA Jagdish Narayan Meena, was among the 18 people selected for the posts of Class IV employees, for the job of peons at the Rajasthan Assembly Secretariat, for which 129 engineers, 23 lawyers, 393 post-graduates and a chartered accountant had also applied.

Jan 07: Sydney, Australia’s largest city, recorded its hottest day since 1939 as temperatures soared to 47.3 degree Celsius in the western suburb of Penrith.

Did You Know?

Seasons occur because Earth is tilted on its axis relative to the orbital plane.

In the Northern Hemisphere, winter generally begins on December 21 or 22. This is the winter solstice, the day of the year with the shortest period of daylight. Summer begins on June 20 or 21, the summer solstice, which has the most daylight of any day in the year.

The seasons in the Northern Hemisphere are the opposite of those in the Southern Hemisphere. This means that in Argentina and Australia, winter begins in June. The winter solstice in the Southern Hemisphere is June 20 or 21, while the summer solstice, the longest day of the year, is December 21 or 22.

Jan 07: Malaysia’s opposition alliance named former premier Mahathir Mohamad as its prime ministerial candidate for the next general election.

Jan 07: Iran banned the teaching of English in primary schools, after Islamic leaders warned that early learning of the language opened the way to a Western ‘cultural invasion’.

Jan 07: England’s Alastair Cook became the sixth batsman to score 12,000 test runs in test cricket.

Jan 08: Anna Mae Hays, a frontline nurse who was named the United States military’s first female general after serving in three wars — in the jungles of India during World War II, in Korea and in Vietnam — died in Washington. She was 97.

Jan 08: The US government announced the end of a special protected status for about 200,000 Salvadoran immigrants, a move that threatens with deportation tens of thousands of well-established families with children born in the United States of America.

Jan 09: North Korea will send its athletes to the Winter Olympics in the South, after their first formal talks in more than two years following high tensions over Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons programme.

Jan 11: Ecuador granted citizenship to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange after more than five years of living in asylum at the nation’s embassy in London.

Jan 12: Democracy in India is at stake, said four senior Supreme Court judges as they went public in an unprecedented move with complaints against Chief Justice Dipak Misra.

Jan 12: India launched its 100th satellite. A total of 31 small satellites were launched into space on that day. More than half of the micro and nano satellites were for the Unites States, and the remainder for India, Canada, Finland, France, South Korea and the United Kingdom.

Jan 12: Bulgaria’s parliament overturned a presidential veto on anti-graft legislation, clearing the way for the creation of a special unit to investigate individuals occupying high public office as well as assets and conflicts of interest.

Jan 14: Opener Jason Roy scored 180 runs, the highest-ever One-Day International score by an England player, in a match against Australia.

Jan 15: Israel and India signed nine agreements covering cooperation in cyber security, space and oil and gas exploration.

Jan 15: Britain’s Guardian newspaper adopted a new tabloid format and a re-designed masthead with simple black lettering as part of a drive to cut costs.

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