August 2018

Day by Day Current Affairs (August 13, 2018) | MCQs for CSS, PMS, NTS


August 13, 2018

  1. Over 85pc NA candidates lose security deposit

  • As the nomination fee commonly known as security deposit of 2,870 of the total 3,355 candidates for the National Assembly will be forfeited for failing to obtain over 25 per cent of total votes polled in their constituencies according to official results,
  • At least 10 party heads besides many other prominent politicians will not be refunded the money they had deposited.
  • Under the Elections Act, the requirement of obtaining one-eighth of the total polled votes to qualify for refund of nomination fee had been changed to one-fourth apparently to discourage non-serious candidates.The ratio of forfeitures was highest in Fata (95.48pc), followed by Islamabad (92.42 pc), Balochistan (91.98 pc) and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (86.13pc), while the lowest ratio of forfeiture was in Sindh (84.46 pc) and Punjab (84.46 pc).
  • In Fata, 254 of the total 266 candidates are going to lose their nomination fee. In Islamabad, 61 of the total 66 candidates for three National Assembly seats failed to secure more than 25pc of the total votes polled.
  • Similarly, 264 of the total 287 candidates for NA seats from Balochistan and 354 of the total 411 candidates from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa could not meet the legal requirement for refund of nomination fee.
  • Besides, 696 of the total 824 contestants from Sindh and 1,241 of 1,501 from Punjab candidates will lose their deposit for failing to get over 25pc of total votes polled in their respectiveconstituencies.
  1. 106 terror financing cases filed in Punjab since 2015

  • The Punjab police have registered 106 cases of terror financing involving proscribed organisations since 2015, and arrested 144 suspects, 42 of whom were convicted by courts.
  • This has been stated in a report which is part of similar narrations three other provinces have prepared for a briefing the Pakistani authorities are scheduled to give to a delegation of the UN Security Council`s Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on Aug 15 on steps taken to curtail financial and other activities of the organisations proscribed by the world body, including the Jamaatud Dawa. The report fromPunjab sent to Islamabad on August 12, 2018.
  • Since 2015, 26 accused were convicted of receiving or donating funds and handed more than five years of imprisonment.
  • Like all other provinces, Punjab has also sent to the federal government its report on implementation of the actions suggested by the UN against the proscribed organisations,` a senior official told Dawn.
  • Officials said a preparatory meeting was held in Islamabad under the federal interior secretary a few days ago in which the provinces were asked to prepare theirreports.
  • The UN has proscribed 18 organisations, including JuD, Jaish-eMuhammad, Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation and Al Qaeda. In addition, Pakistan has alsoitselfbanned another54 organisations.
  1. Nasa launches probe to `touch Sun`

  • NASA on August 12, 2018 launched a $1.5 billion spacecraft toward the Sun on a historic mission to protect the Earth by unveiling the mysteries of dangerous solar storms.
  • `Three, two, one, zero, and liftoff! Of the mighty Delta IV Heavy rocket with NASA`s Parker Solar Probe, a daring mission to shed light on the mysteries of our closest star, the Sun,` said the narrator on NASA TV. The launch lit the night sky at Cape Canaveral, Florida, at 3:31am (0731 GMT).
  • Less than an hour later, mission managers confirmed that the spacecraft separated from the rocket as planned and was safely on its journey. `At this point, spacecraft is up and happy,` said a spokesman with United Launch Alliance, the company thatoperates the rocket.
  • The unmanned spacecraft`s mission is to get closer than any human-made object ever to the centre of our solar system, plunging into the Sun`s atmosphere, known as the corona, during a seven-year mission.
  • The probe is guarded by an ultra-powerful heat shield that can endure unprecedented levels of heat, and radiation 500 times that experienced on Earth.
  • NASA has billed the mission as the first spacecraft to `touch the Sun`. In reality, it should come within 3.83 million miles (6.16 million kilometres) of the Sun`s surface, close enough to study the curious phenomenon of the solar wind and the Sun`s atmosphere, known as the corona, which is 300 times hotter than its surface. The car-sized probe will give scientists a better understanding of solar wind and geomagnetic storms that risk wreaking chaos on Earth by knocking out the power grid.
  1. PTI secures 16 of 22 seats reserved for women MPAs

  • As Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf has clinched 16 of the 22 seats reserved for women in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, Ms Nighat Orakzai of Pakistan People`s Party has created history by becoming MPA on reserved seat for the fourth consecutive term.
  • The Election Commission of Pakistan notified the names of MNAs and MPAs elected on seats reserved for women in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
  • Under the Constitution, nine seats of MNAs and 22 seats of MPAs are reserved for women in the province.
  • PTI has won seven of nine MNA seats whereas a single seat each is won by Mutahidda Majlis-i-Amal and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.
  • Similarly, apart from 16 seats of MPAs won by PTI, Awami National Party and MMA have secured two seats each, whereas both PPP and PML-N have begged a single seat of MPA. Ms Orakzal was twice elected as MPA on ticket of PML in 2002 and 2008. Later, she joined PPP and was elected as MPA in 2013 and now in 2018.
  • Lady luck often smiles on her as like 2008 and 2013, when she was lone woman MPA of PML and PPPP, respectively, she is again the only woman MPA of PPP. On all the three occasions her name was at serial No 1 of the priority list of candidates submitted by her respective party.
  1. Govt gives 50pc subsidy on cotton seed

  • Punjab Secretary Agriculture Wasif Khurshid has said that the government is striving hard to achieve target of cotton production of 10 million bales as huge funds have been provided to the farmers.
  • In a statement, he said that the government has provided approved varieties of cotton seed on up to 50 percent subsidised rate, Radio Pakistan reported. He said that over Rs 14 million are being spent for provision of agricultural machinery to cotton growers.
  • The Secretary Agriculture said that Punjab government has provided 110,000 smart phones to the farmers equipped with special applications through which extension services are being provided to cotton growers and other crops.
  • 889 million rupees are being spent on Commissioned Research Programme for high yield cotton seed production.
  1. Caspian Sea nations sign landmark deal
  • The leaders of the five states bordering the resource-rich Caspian Sea signed a landmark deal on August 12, 2018 on the legal status of the inland sea which boasts a wealth of oil and gas reserves and sturgeon.
  • The leaders of Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia and Turkmenistan signed the agreement on the status of the inland sea, which has been disputed since the collapse of the Soviet Union rendered obsolete agreements between Tehran and Moscow.
  • The host, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev, said before the signing that the leaders were `participants in a historic event`. `we can admit that consensus on the status of the sea was hard to reach and not immediate, the talks lasted more than 20 years and called for a lot of joint efforts from the parties, Nazarbayev said.
  • Russian leader Vladimir Putin, whose country was seen as driving the deal, said the convention had `epochmaking significance` and called for more military cooperation between the countries on the Caspian.
  • Nazarbayev said the convention allows for the construction of underwater oil and gas pipelines as well as setting national quotas for fishing and forbids any for-eign military presence.
  • Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was quick to hail the clause that prevents nonCaspian countries from deploying military forces.
  • After years of unsuccessful negotiations on the Caspian the Kremlin `gains political kudos for breaking a log-jam,` said John Roberts, a non-resident senior fellow at Atlantic Council`s Eurasia Center.
  • The project is billed as allowing European countries to ease their dependence on gas from Russia at a time of heightened geopolitical confrontation.
  1. Russia`s growing influence cause of concern: US general

  • Russia is exerting its authority and presence in the greater Middle East region and the United States believes that Moscow is playing a great power game, says a senior US general.
  • Pakistan and Russia signed an agreement earlier this week, which enables Pakistani military officers to receive training in Russian military institutes.
  • The deal underscores Pakistan`s efforts to seek new allies as its relations with the United States strain. The United States has not only suspended its security assistance to the country but has also suspended training facilities for Pakistani military officers.
  • `Russia is trying to exert their authorityand their presence, their influence across the region,` said Gen Joseph L. Votel, Commander of US Central Command (CENTCOM), when asked to comment on growing military ties between Pakistan and Russia.
  1. Mali holds elections amid militant threat
  • Malians voted on August 12, 2018 in a presidential runoff likely to see Ibrahim Boubacar Keita returned to office despite criticism of his handling of the country`s security crisis and allegations of election fraud.
  • The second round is a rerun of a 2013 face-off that Keita, 73, won by a landslide over former finance minister Soumaila Cisse.
  • This year`s campaign saw fierce attacks on Keita`s perceived failure to dampen a wave of jihadist bloodshed and ethnic violence, as well as mounting accusations of vote fraud.
  • Mali, a landlocked nation home to at least 20 ethnic groups where the majority of people live on less than $2 a day, has battled jihadist attacks and inter-communal violence for years.
  • After the July 29 firstround vote the pool of candidates was reduced from 24 to two, as Keita was credited with 42 per cent of the vote and Cisse, 68, picked up 18 per cent.
  1. Iraq PM cancels visit to sanctions-hit Iran

  • Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has cancelled a visit to Iran, his press office said August 12, 2018, as the premier came under strong Iranian criticism over his stand on renewed US sanctions against Tehran.
  • Abadi will still go ahead with a planned visit to Turkey on Tuesday but has scrapped the Iran leg of the trip “because of his busy schedule”, his office said.
  • Abadi would visit both neighbouring Turkey and Iran to discuss economic issues.
  1. Nobel Prize-winning author V.S. Naipaul dies

  • British author V.S. Naipaul, a famously outspoken Nobel laureate who wrote on the traumas of postcolonial change, has died at the age of 85.
  • Naipaul, who was born in Trinidad and the son of an Indian civil servant, was best known for his novel, A House for Mr Biswas, and his Man Booker Prize-winning In A Free State.
  • Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul settled in England and studied English literature at Oxford University on a scholarship.
  • But he spent much of his timetravelling and despite becoming a pillar of Britain`s cultural establishment, was also a symbol of modern rootlessness.
  • Naipaul`s early works focused on the West Indies, but came to encompass countries around the world.
  • He stirred controversy in the past, describing post-colonial countries as `half-made societies` and alleging that Islam both enslaved and attempted to wipe out other cultures.
  • When he was awarded the 2001 Nobel prize for literature, the Swedish Academy described him as a `literary circumnavigator, only ever really at home in himself, in his inimitable voice`.

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