Important Dates & Festivities - Current Affairs for April,2017

Month and Year:   
▼ April 25: World Malaria and World Penguin Day!   [04-26-17]

World Malaria Day (WMD) is an international observance commemorated every year on 25 April and recognizes global efforts to control malaria.

WMD is one of eight official global public health campaigns currently marked by the World Health Organization (WHO).

2017 THEME : A Push For Prevention

World Penguin Day is observed on April 25. The day was timed to coincide with the annual northward march to the sea of Antarctic penguins, as autumn edges toward winter in that part of the world.

Antarctic penguins in particular are vulnerable to climate change, with shifting ice reducing where they can live and warming seas affecting their prey.

2/3rd of the world’s 18 penguin species, whose habitats range from the equator to Antarctica, are in decline.

▼ National Panchayati Raj Day: April 24   [04-25-17]

National Panchayati Raj Day (National Local Self-Government day) is the national day of India celebrated by Ministry of Panchayati Raj on 24 April annually.

Then Prime Minister of India Manmohan Singh inaugurated the first National Panchayati Raj Day in 2010.

This day marks the passing of the Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act, 1992 that came into force with effect from 24 April 1993.

The passage of 73rd amendment is hailed as a defining moment in history as it permits states to take steps to organize village panchayats and provide them with necessary powers and authority necessary to facilitate them to function as units of self-government.

Every year on this day Union Ministry of Panchayati Raj organises National Conference and awards best performing Gram Panchayats with ‘The Panchayat Shashakatikaran Puraskar/Rashtriya Gaurav Gram Sabha Puraskar’.

National Panchayati Raj: Know More

  • The first National Panchayati Raj Day was celebrated in 2010.
  • The 73rd Amendment 1992 added a new Part IX to the constitution titled “The Panchayats” covering provisions from Article 243 to 243(O)
  • There is a new Eleventh Schedule covering 29 subjects within the functions of the Panchayats.
  • 73rd amendment implements the article 40 of the DPSP which says that “State shall take steps to organise village panchayats and endow them with such powers and authority as may be necessary to enable them to function as units of self-government.

▼ World Book and Copyright Day: April 23   [04-25-17]

23 April is a symbolic date for world literature. It is on this date in 1616 that Cervantes, Shakespeare and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega all died.

It is also the date of birth or death of other prominent authors, such as Maurice Druon, Haldor K.Laxness, Vladimir Nabokov, Josep Pla and Manuel Mejía Vallejo.

It was a natural choice for UNESCO’s General Conference, held in Paris in 1995, to pay a world-wide tribute to books and authors on this date.

UNESCO created the World Book and Copyright Day for this purpose.

World Book Capital for 2017 is Conakry, Guinea

Conakry: Know More

  • Conakry is the capital of Guinea, a country in West Africa.
  • The city sits on the slender Kaloum Peninsula, which extends into the Atlantic Ocean.
  • Just offshore, the Loos Islands are known for their beaches, dense palm forests and water sports.
  • Its enormous Grand Mosque has 4 tall, elegant minarets.

▼ World Earth Day: April 22   [04-24-17]

World Earth Day is celebrated every year on April 22.

It was first celebrated in 1970, and since then it is celebrated in more than 193 countries by over a billion people every year.

Earth Day celebrations are coordinated globally by the Earth Day Network. Earth Day 2017’s Campaign is Environmental & Climate Literacy.

Environmental and climate literacy was chosen as it is important for creating green voters and advancing environmental and climate laws and policies across the globe as well as to accelerate green technologies and jobs.

Every year Earth Day is being observed on the 22nd April to build support for environmental protection around the world.

The concept of observing Earth Day was formally proposed by John McConnell at a UNESCO conference on Environment in 1969.

Later in 1971, a proclamation was signed to observe international Earth Day annually on the Vernal Equinox by UN Secretary-General U Thant.

On Earth Day 2016, historic Paris Agreement on Climate Change was signed. The agreement is legally binding on signatory countries to limit global temperature rise to well below 2 degrees Celsius.

▼ 11th Civil Services Day held    [04-24-17]

The Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh inaugurated the two-day 11th Civil Services Day programme.

The theme of the Conference was ‘Transforming India – Reform to Transform’. An Exhibition on various Priority Programmes of the Government of India was also organized on the theme.

The Civil Services Day is organized on 21st April every year, when civil servants re-dedicate themselves to the cause of the citizens and renew their commitment to public service.

This day coincides with the date on which Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel had addressed the first batch of probationers at the All India Administrative Service Training School at Metcalfe House, New Delhi in 1947.

This year two day function was organised on 20-21 April, 2016, in which eight break away sessions on replication of PM awarded initiatives and four Priority Programmes namely ‘PradhanMantri Jan DhanYojana’, ‘Swachh Bharat (Gramin)’, ‘SwachhVidyalaya’ and ‘Soil Health Card’.

▼ Yoga Day commemorated with stamps   [04-21-17]

The UN postal agency, UN Postal Administration (UNPA) will issue the new special event sheet to commemorate Yoga Day that has been marked annually since 2015.

The special sheet comprises stamps with images of the sacred Indian sound “Om” and various yogic asanas. The UN stamps are issued simultaneously at UN offices in New York, Geneva and Vienna.

Each issue carries a design theme with different denominations for each office. Generally, six new commemorative issues are released each year and remain on sale for 12 months only.

The stamps illustrate the aims and achievements of the United Nations and the other organisations affiliated to it.

The UN General Assembly had adopted the resolution to commemorate the International Day of Yoga every year on 21 June in December 2014.

The resolution had been passed with the support of a record number of nations (177).

The first International Yoga Day was commemorated at the UN in 2015.

MEA Minister Sushma Swaraj had led the celebrations along with the then UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, spiritual yoga guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and US Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard.

▼ HP celebrates Himachal Day    [04-18-17]

Himachal Pradesh is celebrating 70th “Himachal Day” function.

The hill state came into existence after the merger of 30 odd princely states in 1948. This time state level function would be held in Chamba which would be attended by chief minister Virbhadra Singh.

It is a huge achievement that Himachal Pradesh has progressed a lot since 1948. Himachal Pradesh is also the leader of hill area development in India and also one of the fastest growing economies.

HP: Know More

  • Himachal Pradesh, the hill state was formed in 1948 after the 30 odd princely states got merged.
  • Himachal Pradesh’s capital income in 1948 was INR. 240 crores and State Gross Domestic Product was INR. 26 crores. Now the capital income is INR 1,47,277 and the state gross domestic product income is INR 1,24,570.
  • Himachal Pradesh’s literacy percentage has also increased in the last seven decades from 7% in 1948 to 83.78% now.

▼ International Day of Human Space Flight: Apr 12   [04-13-17]

The United Nations (UN) celebrates the International Day of Human Space Flight on April 12 each year.

The International Day of Human Space Flight celebrates the start of the space era for humankind, reaffirming the important contribution of space science and technology in today’s world.

The day also aims to promote aspirations to explore and maintain outer space for peaceful purposes.

The General Assembly, in its resolution A/RES/65/271 of 7 April 2011, declared 12 April as the International Day of Human Space Flight “to celebrate each year at the international level the beginning of the space era for mankind.”

12 April 1961 was the date of the first human space flight, carried out by Yuri Gagarin, a Soviet citizen.

This historic event opened the way for space exploration for the benefit of all humanity.

▼ Manipur People’s Day: 15th of every month   [04-12-17]

The new BJP-led government in Manipur state has decided to hold People’s Day on the 15th of every month.

The announcement was made by the state’s Chief Minister, N Biren Singh on 9 April 2017.

This will promote easy access to the state’s top elected leaders including himself and other Ministers, Commissioners, Secretaries, Deputy Commissioners and Superintendents of Police.

Through the establishment of the day, the public would be able to give suggestions and lodge complaints on public grievances on the 15th of every month.

Formal official order confirming the same will be issued in the coming days.

Besides this, the CM listed out his top priorities as the new head of the state, which includes ending the economic blockade sponsored by the United Naga Council(UNC).

▼ 3rd National Children's Film Festival in Vizag commences   [04-10-17]

Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting and Urban Development M Venkaiah Naidu inaugurated a three-day National Children’s Film Festival in Vishakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh.

It is the largest film festival for children in the country giving the audience quality and wholesome entertainment.

The aim of the film festival is to introduce children to quality cinema and to introduce novel elements beyond films.

A dance performance by the young team of Kuchipudi Kalaa Kendram, a brilliantly coordinated shadow dance performance by Silhouette Squad of Mumbai and the screening of the K.N.T. Sastry’s film Shanu – The Optimist marked the inaugural programme of the three-day National Children’s Film Festival at VUDA Children’s Arena.

Being organised by the Children’s Film Society India (CFSI) in association with the Government of AP, more than 40,000 children from Andhra Pradesh are expected to watch CFSI films at this festival.

The State Government will provide 12 screens in Vishakhapatnam 24 films will be screened at the rate of daily 3 shows.

The festival will showcase 24 popular CFSI films including Akkineni Kutuma Rao’s “Amulyam” another Telugu film along with CFSI popular films like Bandu Boxer, Bhago Bhoot, Chota Sipahi, Chutkan ki Mahabharat, Ek Tha Bhujang, Gauru, Happy Mother’s Day, Krish, Trish & Baltiboy and Pappu ki Pugdandi.

▼ WHO celebrates World Health Day   [04-10-17]

World Health Day is on the 7th of April each year. This day marks the anniversary of the World Health Organization which was founded in 1948.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is the leading global health authority within the United Nations System.

The work of WHO is varied and can mostly be summarized through their 6 point agenda.

  • Promote Development
  • Foster Health Security
  • Strengthen Health Systems
  • Harness information, research and evidence
  • Enhance Partnerships
  • Improve Performance
WHO uses the anniversary of their founding day not only as an opportunity to celebrate the organization and its work but also as an opportunity to highlight a current global health priority.

For each World Health Day, WHO designates a health challenge or theme. Previous years themes have included:
  • Road Safety (2005)
  • Shape The Future Of Life (2003)
  • Protecting Health From Climate Change (2008)
  • International Health Security (2007)
  • Anti microbacterial Resistance: No Action Today No Cure Tomorrow (2011)
  • Aging and Health (2012)
Each year is given a theme to highlight a different global health concern. This year’s (2017) is Depression: Let's Talk.

WHD 2017 is the highlight of a year-long campaign which seeks to raise awareness of depression and encourage those who are suffering with it to seek and get help.

Previous themes have included diabetes, vector-borne diseases, protecting health from climate change and road safety.

Depression: Know More
  • Depression is the leading cause of ill health world wide, according to WHO.
  • It is estimated that more than 300 million people are living with depression, an increase of more than 18 per cent between 2005 and 2015.
  • Depression has strong links with other noncommunicable disorders and diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, and increases the risk of substance abuse.
  • Depression is also an important risk factor in suicide, which claims hundreds of thousands of lives each year.
  • Treatment usually involves psychotherapy, antidepressant medication or a combination of both.
  • The so-called talking cure administered by general doctors, nurses, or health care workers can be just as effective.

▼ IDSDP celebrated on Apr 6   [04-7-17]

6 April was declared as the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP) by the UN General Assembly.

In 2013, the Sixty-seventh session of the United Nations General Assembly decided to proclaim 6 April as the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace.

On the occasion of the 2017 International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP), the United Nations Office on Sport for Development and Peace (UNOSDP) launched the digital campaign #WePlayTogether to encourage organizations and individuals.

▼ National Maritime Day: April 5th   [04-6-17]

April 5 marks the National Maritime Day of India.

On this day in 1919 navigation history was created when SS Loyalty, the first ship of the Scindia Steam Navigation Company, journeyed to the United Kingdom.

The National Maritime Day was first celebrated on 5th April, 1964.

The strategic geographical position of the Indian sub-continent with vast expanse of the seas around naturally led to seafaring even in the days of the Indus Valley civilisation dating back to circa 3000 BC.

Since time immemorial Indians have displayed a remarkable interest in seafaring and maritime activities.

The shipbuilding industry in India had shown great progress so long as sailing ships with wooden hull were in vogue.

Chronology of events
Odia communities across the country and abroad celebrated Utkal Divas to mark the formation of Odisha state on linguistic basis in 1936. The foundation day of Odisha is celebrated across the state on April 1 every year after it was carved out of the combined Bengal-Bihar-Orissa province in 1936.
World Autism Awareness Day observed on 2nd April 2017. The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) recognises the right of persons with disabilities to independence of person and to individual autonomy (article 3).
The World autism Awareness Day is observed every year on 2 April across the world to raise awareness about autism and problems faced by people suffering from it. The theme for year 2017 is ‘Toward Autonomy and Self-Determination’.
The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee has extended his greetings and felicitations to the Government and people of the Republic of Senegal on the eve of their Independence Day (April 4, 2017).
The International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action is observed every year on April 4 to highlight the deadly threat that mines pose to civilians’ lives and nations’ development. The theme of this year was “Needs driven. People Centred”.
The Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated ‘‘Swachhagraha “Bapu Ko Karyanjali”- A Mission, An Exhibition’ to mark 100th Anniversary of Champaran Satyagrah at the National Archives of India (NAI) on April 9, 2017.
Mahavir Jayanti, the birth anniversary of 24th and last Jain Tirthankar Bhagwan Mahavir is being celebrated across the country on 09 April 2017.
"Making New India” will be the theme for Civil Services Day, 2017 scheduled to be held on 20th and 21st of this month in New Delhi.