Today's top news
1. *PM Modi to Address Nation Via His Last 'Mann ki Baat' Radio Programme For 2020 Today* | Tune-in at 11 AM
2. *The farmer unions on Saturday agreed to the government's offer of talks to resolve the deadlock over the new farm laws and proposed the next meeting on December 29 at 11am.* 40 Farmer Unions agree to hold talks with Centre on Dec 29; set 4-point agenda for meet
3. *The Jharkhand Cabinet recently approved a loan waiver up to Rs 50,000 for 9.07 lakh farmers.* The cabinet has earmarked Rs 2,000 crores for the purpose
4. *Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal on Saturday informed that the dates for the 2021 CBSE board examinations will be declared on December 31 evening.*
5. The Ministry of Urban Affairs recently launched a new mobile application and a portal called “ *E-Sampada* ”. The application provides a single window for services such as allotment for more than one lakh Government residential accommodations and office space allotment to Government organisations.
6. *Andhra Pradesh which is one of the four states in India selected by the Centre to carry out end to end dry run for COVID-19 vaccination,* will conduct dry run on December 28 and December 29.
7. PM Narendra Modi to flag off *100th Kisan Rail on December 28* from Maharashtra's Sangola to West Bengal's Shalimar.
8. Rashtriya Loktantrik Party, BJP's ally in Rajasthan quits NDA over farm laws, says 'will not join UPA'
9. *Saradha chit fund scam,* the CBI moved the Supreme Court on Saturday, seeking custodial re-interrogation of former West Bengal Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar. The CBI has alleged that Rajeev Kumar has not been cooperating with the investigation and remains evasive in his answers to the CBI. Additionally, CBI states that custodial interrogation of Rajeev Kumar is necessary in the case to unearth the larger nexus and the depth of the Saradha chit scam.
10. Hitting out at Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee, BJP has decided to launch a ' *Nandigram Chalo' rally spearheaded by its newly joined leader - Suvendu Adhikari on January 8.* Adhikari - who was the mastermind of 2007 Nandigram agitation - which led to the fall of the 34-year CPI(M) govt and the rise of Mamata Banerjee, will be the key speaker at the event. Adhikari, along with 6 MLAs, 1 MP, and 16 other grassroots leaders joined the saffron party's folds in the presence of Home Minister Amit Shah's presence 20 December .
11. *Former Congress president and Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi among top 10 MPs who extended assistance to their constituents during lockdown* , reveals survey. The top 10 MPs were identified based on field interviews and feedback from the respective constituencies.
12. *The Himachal Pradesh Police has arrested 10 tourists and seized three vehicles for obstructing traffic inside Atal Tunnel in Rohtang* : The tourists stopped their vehicles inside the tunnel, played music and started dancing which led to a traffic jam.
15. *In January 2021, banks in India will remain closed for 14 days* , including four Sundays along with second and fourth Saturdays, and one national holiday. According to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), these holidays may differ from state to state and be different in various banks. Customers are advised to plan their bank-related work accordingly,.
16. *The Madhya Pradesh Freedom of Religion Bill, 2020’* which provides for up to 10 years in jail for conversion “through marriage or by any other fraudulent means” *got the state cabinet’s approval* on Saturday.
17. National Conference leader Omar Abdullah on Saturday said the Bharatiya Janata Party, its allies and the administration in Jammu and Kashmir should accept the verdict of the District Development Council (DDC) elections and stop indulging in 'horse-trading' which will only discredit democracy and the institutions.
18. Actor Rajinikanth’s blood sugar levels are still on the higher side, Apollo Hospitals, Hyderabad, said in a statement released on the actor’s health condition at 10.30am on Saturday. The hospital, providing an update on the 70-year old actor's health, said results of some of the investigations carried out today and a decision on discharging him would be taken on Sunday,
19. *Bollywood Salman Khan birthday:* He turns 55 on Sunday(Dec 27).
20. *The Indian Space Research Organization recently released the first set of data from Chandrayaan-2* . The data was prepared by Planetary Data System (Version 4). The first data set was released through PRADAN portal. The PRADAN portal is hosted by ISSDC (Indian Space Science Data Centre).
21. *Two terrorists were gunned down on Saturday in an encounter that broke out between terrorists and security forces at the Kanigam area of Shopian,*
22. Around 150 Army personnel out 2000, who arrives the Republic parade at National capital Delhi from various locations tested positive for COVID-19. It was detected during mandatory testing.
23. *Top Naga militant surrenders along with 52 cadres* : Starson Lamkang, a Manipuri Naga from Lamkang tribe of National Socialist Council of Nagaland (K-Yung Aung) surrendered on December 25 along with 52 other cadres. NSCN (K-YA) is the only Naga faction which has not observed a ceasefire with the security forces and is not part of the ongoing peace talks.
24. *Coronavirus Cases* :
1. *Myanmar on Friday officially inducted a submarine handed over by India in the month of October. INS Sindhuvir* was commissioned as UMS Minye Theinkhathu and inducted on the 73rd anniversary of the Myanmar Navy. During the commissioning ceremony, Indian ambassador to Myanmar Saurabh Kumar was also present along with top brass of Myanmar's Navy.
2. *The gains for India from the EU-UK Brexit deal are mainly in the service sector.* This is because, the UK currencies are becoming cheaper. Therefore, it will be less expensive for the Indian firms, especially the service sectors offering more incentives such as easy regulations, tax breaks and opening up markets.
3. *India will regain its position as the fifth-largest economy by 2025 and emerge as the third-largest by 2030* in dollar terms and remain in that position until 2035 while China is now forecast to overtake the US economy in 2028, five years earlier than in 2033 as previously forecast, a top economic research firm has estimated.
4. *The Indian farmer leaders have said that they would write to Britain MPs, urging them to press their Prime Minister Boris Johnson not to attend India's Republic Day celebrations on January 26.* Johnson will be the chief guest at the event next month. At a press conference, it was said that farmer leaders will observe "Shaheedi diwas" from December 23-26. Protesting unions have already given a call to halt toll collection on highways in Haryana from December 25 to 27.