1. India’s first indigenous 9mm Machine Pistol has been jointly developed by the Indian Army and the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). This was informed by the Defence Ministry on January 14, 2021.
2. The Startup India International Summit- ‘Prarambh’ was inaugurated on January 15, 2021 by Union Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal who stated that Prarambh’ is a beginning of a new journey towards new horizons with hope, encouragement & confidence.
3. India-Oman Strategic Consultative Group (IOSCG) meeting was held in-person in New Delhi on January 14, 2021. This was the first high-level official visit from Oman to India since the COVID-19 outbreak. Both Indian and Omani delegations expressed satisfaction that despite the COVID-19 pandemic both sides kept in close touch and sustained momentum in further consolidation of their strategic relationship.
4. Henley and Partners Passport Index 2021 on January 5, 2021 released a list of the world’s most powerful passports. Japan topped the index with a visa score of 191, followed by Singapore and then Germany and South Korea. Japanese citizens can travel without a visa or have visa-on-arrival access to as many as 191 countries around the world.
5. India has been ranked at the 85th position on the Henley and Partners Passport Index 2021 with a visa score of 58. This means that Indian passport holders can visit 58 countries without a prior visa or visa-on-arrival. Tajikistan was also ranked at the 85th place along with India.
6. Afghanistan was ranked last at 110th position on the Henley and Partners Passport Index 2021 with a visa score of 26. The other countries ranked at the bottom of the index included Iraq at 109th place, Syria at 108th, Pakistan at 107th and Somalia and Yemen at 106th.
7. Indian Army Day is celebrated every year on January 15 to commemorate the day when Field Marshal Kodandera M. Cariappa took over as the first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army from General Sir Francis Butcher, the last British Commander-in-Chief of India. The transfer of power had taken place on January 15, 1949.
8. India and Japan signed a MoU on 15th January 2021 to enhance cooperation in the field of Information and Communications Technologies. The agreement was signed by Union Minister for Communications Ravi Shankar Prasad and Japanese Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications Takeda Ryota through video conferencing.
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