Current Affairs June 2015 and 2016

Current Affairs June 2015

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                                               Current Affairs -30th June 2015

1. Nadia district in West Bengal wins UN Public ServiceAward 2015

i. Nadia district in West Bengal has won the United Nations PublicService Award 2015 in the category of improving delivery of publicservices for or eliminating open defecation in the district.

ii. The award was presented by the acting Secretary General of theUN Lenni Montiel to District Magistrate of Nadia and Sabhapati ofNadia Zilla Parishad in Medellin, Colombia.

iii. It was a collaborative effort with the United NationsChildren’s Fund (UNICEF) and World Bank along with state governmentand local governments.

iv. The programme was initiated in 2013. In one-and-half-years,toilets were built in 5 lakh households and over 200 cluster toiletsin public places.

2. National Level Sikh museum to be constructed inLakhnaur Sahib Village of Punjab

i. A national level museum of Sikh heritage will be setup inLakhnaur Sahib village close to Ambala City, Punjab. Thisannouncement was made by Ratan Lal Kataria, MP from Ambala on 29 June2015.

ii. Lakhnaur Sahib is a historical village as the mother of tenthSikh guru Guru Gobind Singh, Mata Gujari belonged to the place. GuruGobind Singh had also spent a few years of his childhood in thevillage.

iii. Around 17 acres of land belonging to Maharaja Ranjit Singhhad been lying vacant in the village, which would now be utilized forthe museum. Some articles belonging to Guru Gobind Singh and hismother Mata Gujari will also be kept in the museum and it would bedeveloped on the lines of Anandpur Sahib Museum.

iv. Kataria also announced a contribution of 11 lakh rupees forthe gurudwara from Member of Parliament Local Area Development(MPLAD) funds.

3. Afghan prez Ghani nominates first female judge toSupreme Court

i. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani nominated a female judge to theSupreme Court on Tuesday in an unprecedented move that has angeredsome Islamic conservatives.

ii. Anisa Rasouli, the head of the Afghan Women Judges Associationand a former juvenile court judge, was the only female nominated tothe nine-member bench after the announcement was delayed due toopposition by a group of Islamic conservatives earlier this month.

iii. President Ghani's wife Rula stepped into the limelight duringthe presidential election last year and has been actively campaigningfor women's rights since then.

4. HDFC Bank launches '30-min auto', '15-min 2-wheeler'loans

i. Country's second largest private sector lender HDFC Bank  on Monday launched '30-min auto' and '15-min 2-wheeler' loan schemes,for which customers have to provide only their biometric details.

ii. The 30-minute auto loan is available for HDFC Bank customers,as well as others. With this technology-enabled solution, loans fortwo-wheelers can also be approved within 15 minutes

iii. Any person willing to avail a loan can walk into an autodealership or any other touch points of the bank and provide theAadhaar card number and fingerprint, it said.

5. Bharti Airtel becomes 3rd largest mobile operator inworld

i. Sunil Mittal-led Bharti Airtel has become the world’s thirdlargest mobile operator with 303 million subscriber.

ii. With operations in 20 countries, Bharti Airtel, which ispresent in India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Africa, has “become thethird largest mobile operator in the world in terms of subscribers”,the company said in a statement.

iii. Quoting latest data published by World Cellular InformationService (WCIS), it said Airtel has over 303 million mobilesubscribers across its operations and has moved up one position inthe global rankings.

iv. China Mobile, according to WCIS, is the top mobile operator inthe world with 626.27 million subscribers. Vodafone Group of UK rankssecond with 403.08 million subscribers.

6. Indian Railways, Indian Army among world’s biggestemployers:  WEF Study

i. Two Indian organizations, India Army and Indian Railways areamong the world’s biggest employers. It was revealed in a researchpublished by the World Economic Forum (WEF). Both organisationsemploy around 2.7 million people together.

ii. Indian Railways was placed at 8th position with 1.4 millionstaff, while Indian Army was placed at 9th position with 1.3 millionemployees in the list of world’s biggest employers.

iii. US department of Defense: It is the world’s biggestemployer with over 3.2 million employees.

iv. People’s Liberation Army (PLA): Chinese military is 2ndbiggest employer with 2.3 million employees.

7. IDFC appoints former CAG Vinod Rai as independentdirector

i. Infrastructure financing firm IDFC today appointed formerComptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) as independentdirector.

ii. The appointment has been made with immediate effect.

iii. Rai also worked as Financial Services Secretary. He wasdirector on several boards including the State Bank of India, ICICIBank, IDBI Bank, and Life Insurance Corporation of India.

8. Adelaide Oval to host cricket's first ever day-nightTest

i. Australia and New Zealand will play cricket's first day-nightTest in Adelaide from late November.

ii. The Test, running November 27-December 1, will feature pinkballs that Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland believes willhold up to Test match play.

iii. The Test is one of six at home for the Australians - threeeach against New Zealand and West Indies - from November 5 untilJanuary 7.
 

                                     Current Affairs - 28th & 29th June 2015

 

1. J Jayalalithaa launches first phase of Chennai Metro

i. First phase of Chennai Metro service was inaugurated by TamilNadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa after she flagged off inauguraltrain.

ii. The first phase of Metro service covers the 10-km overhead(elevated) stretch. It connects Alandur in south Chennai to Koyabeduin the north.

iii. The metro service will bear capacity of 1276 passengers withfour coaches. It will cover seven stations in the stretch. They areKoyambedu, Arumbakkam, Vadapalani, Chennai Mofussil Bus Terminus,Ashok Nagar, Ekkattuthangal.

iv. The Corridor 2 or second phase of this metro connectingChennai Central and St. Thomas Mount is will be ready by end 2015.The whole project is implemented by Chennai Metro Rail Limited(CMRL). It was approved by then Congress-led UPA government in 2009.

2. Famous Writer Vishwanath Tripathi chosen for 28thMoorti Devi Award

i. Veteran Writer Vishwanath Tripathi was on 27 June 2015 selectedfor the 28th Moorti Devi Award for the year 2014 for his bookVyomkesh Darvesh. Vyomkesh Darvesh is a lifetime story of AcharyaHazari Prasad Dwivedi.

ii. Born on 16 February 1931 in Bishkohar village of districtBasti in Uttar Pradesh, Tripathi was a student of the Banaras HinduUniversity and Punjab University.

iii. His other works include Lokwadi Tulsidas, Meera Ka Kavya,Desh ke is Daur Main, Kuch Kahaniyan Kuch Vichar, Ped Ka Hath, JaisaKaha Saka and Nagatlai Ka Gaon.

About Moorti Devi Award

• Moorti Devi award was founded by BharatiyaJnanpith and is given away to the authors who have contributed in thefield of contemporary creative writing in modern Indian languages.
•It is presented annually for a contemplative and perceptive workwhich expresses, underlines and illumines human values rooted in thebroad vision of Indian philosophy and cultural heritage.
•Books written in English and all Indian languages are considered forthe Prize, which comprises a cash award of four lakhs rupees, astatue and a citation plaque.

3. China-led AIIB development bank holds signingceremony

i. China has hosted the signing ceremony of the AsianInfrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), a new international financialinstitution set to rival the World Bank and Asian Development Bank.

ii. Delegates from 50 countries signed articles that determineeach member's share and the bank's initial capital.

iii. The AIIB, which was created in October by 21 countries, ledby China, will fund Asian energy, transport and infrastructureprojects.

iv. The AIIB will begin with authorised capital of $50bn(£31.8bn), eventually to be raised to $100bn. China will hold a30.34% stake making it the largest shareholder of the bank, Reutersquotes China's Finance Ministry as saying.

4. Transcendence: My Spiritual Experiences with PramukhSwamiji written by Abdul Kalam

i. Book titled Transcendence: My Spiritual Experiences withPramukh Swamiji authored by former President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam andArun Tiwari was released on 15 June 2015.

ii. In Transcendence, the authors Dr Kalam and Arun Tiwari havemapped a journey of self-realization reflected in the eyes of PramukhSwamiji, painting a delightful fusion of spirituality, science andleadership.

iii. His candid vignettes (literature) from life on the centrestage of Indian technology and societal missions, Indian politics andworld affairs are interwoven with revelations of a profoundconnection with Swamiji.

iv. Pramukh Swamiji Maharaj, one of the most inspiring spiritualfigures of modern times and the fifth spiritual successor of BhagwanSwaminarayan, is the inheritor of a legacy of Gunatit gurushearkening to the early nineteenth century. Pramukh Swamiji became afriend of the eleventh president of India, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam.

5. President conferred Punyabhushan Award on PratapraoPawar

i. President Pranab Mukharjee on 26 June 2015 conferredPunyabhushan Award on Prataprao Pawar, Chairman of Sakal Media Group(SMG) at Balgandharva Auditorium in Pune.

ii. Pawar is the 27th recipient of the Punyabhushan award and hisname was selected for the award by a committee led by scientistRaghunath Mashelkar.

iii. Besides, President also felicitated five veteran freedomfighters in the function.

Punyabhushan Award

• The Punyabhushan (Pride of Pune) awardconstituted by Tridal, Pune is annually announced by the PunyabhushanFoundation on 23 March with a view to commemorate the memory ofIndian revolutionary martyrs Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev, and Rajguru.
•It is awarded to an eminent personality from the field ofart, music, culture, science, industry, social service, or sports inthe city of Pune Maharashtra, India. The award carries a memento andcash prize of 1 lakh rupees.
• 26thPunyabhushan Award was presented to Dr Cyrus Poonawalla for hiscontribution to the field of Medicine & Research.

6. India, Thailand sign multiple agreements includingdouble taxation avoidance treaty

i. India and Thailand on Monday signed a number of importantagreements, including the double taxation avoidance treaty, andexchanged instruments of ratification on the extradition treaty inkedin 2013, which provides for the legal framework for seekingextradition of fugitive offenders.

ii. The tax treaty provides for the framework to avoid doubletaxation and prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes so asto promote bilateral economic cooperation.

iii. On the last day of her three-day visit, External AffairsMinister Sushma Swaraj co-chaired the 7th meeting of theIndia-Thailand Joint Commission for Bilateral Cooperation.

iv. The extradition treaty signed between the two countries in2013 provides for the legal framework for seeking extradition offugitive offenders, including those involved in terrorism,transnational crimes, economic offences etc.

7. Jwala Gutta, Ashwni Ponappa win women’s doublestitle of Canada Open Badminton tournament

i. Indian pair of Jwala Gutta and Ashwni Ponappa won the women’sdoubles title of the Canada Open Badminton tournament.

ii. In the finals match played at Calgary, Canada they defeatedDutch pair of Eefje Muskens and Selena Piek in straight games of21-19, 21-16. It is their first title of this season.

iii. Michelle Li of Canada won the women’s single title, bydefeating Kaori Imabeppu of Japan by 21-17 25-23 score in the finalmatch.

 

                                        Current Affairs - 27th June 2015

 

1. Link Intime launches apps to give investorsreal-time info

i. To give real-time information, securities registry serviceprovider Link Intime India Pvt Ltd has launched two unique mobileapplications, one for investors and the other for client companies.

ii. The bLink app provides the latest information across allclient companies serviced by Link Intime to investors. The app willprovide information about IPO allotments, details of shareholdermeetings, dividends declared and book closure period, undeliveredarticles, failure of credits of dividend/ interests, and failure ofcredit of shares/ bonds into investors’ accounts, among others.

iii. An investor can add up to 10 DP accounts under one login. TheInSta Link app, for authorised corporate clients of Link Intime,gives an overview of the latest available holdings of shareholders ofthe company under various categories and changes thereof in theimmediate past seven days.

2. NCR to have a second airport; Aviation ministrymakes Jewar as first choice

i. The civil aviation ministry on Thursday took an in-principledecision to have a second airport in the National Capital Region(NCR). Among the probable sites for the airport, the ministry zeroedin on Jewar, keeping in view the fact that availability of land is abig problem.

ii. On the UP government’s choice of having an airport inFirozabad, the minister said the purpose of a second airport nearDelhi would be defeated if an airport comes up in Firozabad.

iii. With the population of NCR (National Capital Region) 8 crore,covering Delhi, Gurgaon, Faridabad and Meerut in western UttarPradesh, using only one airport, there is an urgent need for a secondairport.

3. BRICS bank to be operational by end of 2015: SouthAfrica

i. The emerging market BRICS nations will have their owndevelopment bank by the end of the year.

ii. "The New Development Bank is expected to be operationalby end of 2015," the South African finance ministry said in astatement that announced the nomination of South African bankerLeslie Maasdorp as vice president of the bank and parliamentaryratification of two treaties concerning the lender.

                                           

iii. The BRICS nations - Brazil, Russia, India, China and SouthAfrica - which represent 40 per cent of the world's population and aquarter of its economic output, decided in 2013 to create their owndevelopment bank to step up lending for the infrastructure projectsneeded to close the gap with the industrialised world.The bank, whichwill be headquartered in Shanghai, is expected to have up to $100billion in capital.

iv. The inaugural meeting of the board of governors of the NewDevelopment Bank will be held in the Russian city of Ufa on July 7 toconfirm the appointment of the management of the lender.

4. Mboweni heads for Brics bank

i. Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene announced on Friday that formerReserve Bank governor Tito Mboweni has been appointed as thenon-executive director to the board the Brics New Development Bank(NDB).

ii. He added that Cabinet had endorsed the nomination of LeslieMaasdorp for vice-president of the NDB. Maasdorp recently parted wayswith AdvTech where he was chief executive. He was previously thepresident of Merrill Lynch for southern Africa.

iii. The management of the NDBs will be appointed at the board ofgovernors inaugural meeting on July 7‚ Nene said. The NDB isexpected to be up and running by the end of the year.

5. US Supreme Court legalized Same-Sex MarriageNationwide

i. The United States (US) Supreme Court on 26 June 2015 legalizedsame-sex marriage across the nation in a closely divided ruling by a5 to 4 vote. The 28-page ruling was made by Justice Anthony Kennedyand was agreed by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen G. Breyer,Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.

ii. With this ruling, now the states cannot deny marriage rightsenjoyed for thousands of years by opposite-sex couples to gay men andlesbians. The decision is expected to trigger same-sex marriages infourteen states that banned the practice.

iii. The court ratified the Bill of Rights and added theFourteenth Amendment that states no state shall deprive any person oflife, liberty, or property, without due process of law.

iv. The Fourteenth Amendment requires a State to license amarriage between two people of the same sex and to recognize amarriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage waslawfully licensed and performed out-of-State.

v. The decision came exactly two years after Kennedy's majorityopinion in United States v. Windsor struck down a federal law denyingbenefits to married same-sex couples. In this decision, JusticeKennedy embraced a vision of a living Constitution that evolves withsocietal changes.

vi. According to the Williams Institute at the University ofCalifornia, Los Angeles, which tracks the demographics of gay andlesbian Americans, there are an estimated 390000 married same-sexcouples in the United States.

6. India ranked best for investment

i. A ranking of destinations for attractiveness to foreigninvestors has placed India at the top among 110 countries. China hassecured the 65th position and the U.S. is at the 50th. In the 2014index, India was at the sixth position and Hong Kong was number one.

ii. The ranking is based on an index for baseline profitabilitythat assumes that three factors affect the ultimate success of aforeign investment: how much the value of an asset grows; thepreservation of that value while the asset is owned; and the ease ofrepatriation of proceeds from selling the asset.

iv. The index combines measures for each of these factors into asummary statistic that conveys a country’s basic attractiveness forinvestment.

7. Veselin Topalov won the Norway Chess Tournament 2015

i. Veselin Topalov on 25 June 2015 won the Norway Chess tournament2015 by leaving behind Viswanathan Anand into a quick draw. Topalovsecured 6½ points while Anand ended the tournament in second placewith 6 points.

Results of the Norway Chess tournament 2015

• Hikaru Nakamura showed excellent techniqueand won by 6 points and stood at third place by leaving behind LevonAronian with 3 points.
• Magnus Carlsen playedvery poorly again losing to Jon Ludwig Hammer who got 3 points.
•On the other hand, Grischuk ended on 3½ points (-2) andVachier-Lagrave got 4 points (-1).
• Caruanagot 4 points on -1 and Giri acquired 5½ points and stood at fourthposition.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 26th June 2015
 

1. International Day Against Drug Abuse and IllicitTrafficking observed globally

i. The International Day Against Drug Abuse and IllicitTrafficking was on 26 June 2015 observed globally with the themeLet’s Develop our Lives, our Communities, our identitieswithout Drugs.

ii. This important day was created by the United Nations GeneralAssembly on 7 December 1987 to help create a society free of illegaldrugs and drug abuse.  Each year the United Nations Office onDrugs and Crime (UNODC) selects a theme for the day.

iii. The day is observed internationally by various countries byspreading awareness about Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking throughevents and programmes.

2. Union Government exempts educational institutionsfrom prior green nod

i. Union Government has exempted builders from obtaining priorgreen nod for construction of Universities, School, College andHostel facilities.

ii. In this regard Union Ministry of Environment, Forests andClimate Change (MoEFCC) has issued a circular to exempt green nod foreducational institutions provided they should follow sustainableenvironment practises of construction.

iii. Besides, educational institutes MoEFCC has exempted buildersfrom obtaining prior green nod for construction of industrial sheds.It also exempts godowns and buildings which are connected withproduction related and other associated activities of the unit in thesame premise.

iv. in this circular MoEFCC had clarified that prior environmentclearance is mandatorily required for construction of MedicalUniversities and institutes having hospital facilities.

3. Mobile tower set up at 16,000 feet in Ladakh

i. State-run BSNL, with the Army's assistance, todayoperationalised a mobile tower at an altitude of 16,000 feet inEastern Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir.

ii. The mobile tower at Chongtash has been established withassistance from the Indian Army's Trishul Signallers in terms oftransportation, setting up and rearward connectivity.

4. Ericsson appoints Paolo Colella as new head ofregion India

i. Ericsson has announced the appointment of Paolo Colella as newHead of Region India. In this new role, Paolo will also take a seaton Ericsson’s Global Leadership Team, reporting to the Chairman ofRegion India and Senior Vice President Asia-Pacific, Mats H Olsson.

ii. Chris has successfully managed Ericsson’s operations inIndia during his two year stint in the country and enabled the Indiaoperations to grow into the largest employee base for Ericsson in theworld.

iii. Paolo Colella, who assumes his new role effective September1, 2015, has been responsible for Ericsson’s Consulting and SystemsIntegration practice globally for around six years.

5. Anshula Kant appointed as CFO and Deputy ManagingDirector of SBI

i. Anshula Kant was on 25 June 2015 appointed as the DeputyManaging Director and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of State Bank ofIndia (SBI). She succeeded P K Gupta, who was promoted as ChiefExecutive Officer of SBI Capital.

ii. Till recently, Kant headed Bombay Circle of SBI as the ChiefGeneral Manager. She joined State Bank of India as a ProbationaryOfficer in 1983. Since then, she has handled many crucial assignmentsin Retail Banking, Corporate Credit, Cross-Border Trade and Bankingin Developed Markets.

iii. Earlier, she headed Network 2 of Mumbai Circle, which spansthe State of Goa and the Districts of Pune, Solapur, Kolhapur,Sangli, Satara, Nashik, Ahmadnagar, Sindhudurg and Ratnagiri in theState of Maharashtra.

iv. She has been a Certified Associate of the Indian Institute ofBankers since 1990.

6. RBI extends deadline for exchanging pre-2005currency notes till December 2015

i. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has extended the date toexchange pre-2005 bank notes till December 31, 2015 for third time.

ii. RBI had set the last date for public to exchange these notesas June 30, 2015. RBI has urged people to deposit the old designnotes in the bank accounts or exchange them at a bank branch.

iii. pre-2005 notes have fewer security features as compared to2005 and post-2005 currency notes. It will also remove fake currencynotes in circulation which were being pumped in Indian economy werecopies of pre-2005 notes.

iv. The spillover effect of the RBI’s decision will be to flushout black money. Money has value only as long as it is a medium ofexchange and store of value.

v. A disincentive for cash hoarders – With the RBI’sannouncement, currency hoarders will be left with no option but toliquidate their unaccounted holdings by spending or exchanging them.

7. Satnam Singh Bhamara: All about India's first NBAplayer

i. Satnam Singh Bhamara, the first Indian-born player to bedrafted in the NBA League, was introduced to basketball by hisfather, who is a farmer.

ii. Picked by the Dallas Mavericks in the 2015 NBA Draft, Singhhas made history. But, there's a long way to go.

                                        

iii. Born in Ballo Ke, a village in Punjab where there are nobasketball courts and no cable television, he started playing thegame at an early age. At the age of 12, he was sent to thegovernment-funded Ludhiana Basketball Academy, where he spent twoyears away from home studying and training and honing his basketballskills.

iv. In 2010, at age 14, Singh was one of 29 Indian athletes inthree sports who moved to the United States to get trained at therenowned IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, as part of a newscholarship programme to promote, develop, and manage sports andentertainment in India.

                                         Current Affairs - 25th June 2015

 

1. Union Cabinet gives nod to rename SECI as RenewableEnergy Corporation of India

i. Union Cabinet has given nod to rename Solar Energy Corporationof India (SECI) as the Renewable Energy Corporation of India (RECI).

ii. Apart from this decision, Union Cabinet also gave approval toSECI to convert into Section 3 Company by applying to the Registrarof Companies (ROC) from a Section 8 Company under the Companies Act,2013. This decision will help SECI or renamed entity RECI.

iii. SECI is a not-for-profit company under Section-25 of theCompanies Act 1956.  it was Established in 2011 as afacilitation and implementation institution dedicated to Solar Energysector. Operates under: the aegis of Union Ministry of New andRenewable Energy,its Objective is to develop Solar Technologies andensuring inclusive solar power development throughout India.

2. Zaheer Abbas appointed as ICC President

i. Former Pakistan cricket team captain Zaheer Abbas has beenselected the new President of International Cricket Council (ICC) forone year term.

ii. He will be 13th President of ICC and succeeds Mustafa Kamal ofBangladesh who had resigned from the post of ICC President in April2015.

iii. Decision in this regard was taken during the ICC AnnualConference week in Barbados. Zaheer Abbas was a right-handed batsman.He had played 78 Tests and 62 One-Day Internationals (ODIs) in his22-year long illustrious career spanning from 1969 to 1985. He hadscored 5,062 runs in Test career and 2,572 runs in ODI career. Healso had represented Pakistan in three World Cups in 1975, 1979 and1983. He also captained Pakistan in 14 Tests and 13 ODIs matches. Inhis career, he had scored 108 centuries.

iv. He was the only Asian batsman to score 100 first-classcenturies and was also first batsman to score three consecutivecenturies in ODIs.

3. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar conferred with Columbia’shighest civilian award

i. The spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar was conferred withthe Columbia’s highest civilian award Orden de la Democracia SimonBolivar en el grado de cruz Caballero (Order of the Democracy SimonBolivar) by Columbia.

ii. For this, he was congratulated by the Prime Minister NarendraModi on 25 June 2015.

iii. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar founded the Art of Living Foundation in1981, which aims to relieve individual stress, societal problems, andviolence.

iv. In 1997, he also founded the International Association forHuman Values (IAHV) to coordinate sustainable development projects,nurture human values and coordinate conflict resolution inassociation with The Art of Living.

v. The Order of the Democracy Simon Bolivar was created in 1980 tohonour the outstanding citizens for their service to the nation inany field. It is granted by the House of Representatives of Columbia.

vi. The order was established to highlight the efforts, loyaltyand virtues of citizens or institutions for democracy.

4. 11 Indian companies in Forbes Asia's 'Best Under ABillion' list

i. As many as 11 Indian companies including Avanti Feeds LtdBSE0.37 % and Borosil Glass WorksBSE 0.11 % are ranked among top 200Asia Pacific corporations in Forbes Asia's 'Best Under A Billion'list.

ii. The list covers public companies with annual revenue of $5million to $1 billion, Forbes said, adding that they should also havepositive net income and should be publicly traded for at least ayear.

iii. Companies from mainland China & Hong Kong (84) as well asTaiwan (36) dominated this year's list accounting for 60 per cent ofthe top 200 publicly-traded companies in the Asia Pacific region.

iv. With 11 companies, India was ranked fourth on the list afterSouth Korea which has 17 firms in the coveted list.

5. India leads FDI in South Asia with 34 billioninvestment in 2014

i. India leads regional inflow of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI)in South Asia accounting for $34 billion investment during 2014 andthe upward trend is likely to continue this year also, according to aUN report which placed China as the world's largest FDI recipient.

ii. "FDI inflows to the country (India) surged by 22% toabout $34 billion" improving its position to 9th top hostcountry for FDI in 2014, over its rank of 15th in 2013, the UNCTAD'sWorld Investment Report 2015 says.

iii. India is likely to maintain an upward trend in 2015 aseconomy recovery gains ground.

6. Inderjeet Singh, Jinson Johnson won gold at AsianAthletics Grand Prix

i. Inderjit Singh and Jinson Johnson of India on 23 June 2015bagged gold at the first leg of the Asian Athletics Grand Prix inBangkok, Thailand.

ii. Inderjit won the gold in Shot Put by throwing 19.83 meterswhile Johnson won the gold in 800 meter event with a time of 1:48.52.

iii. This was Inderjeet's second gold in an international event inJune 2015, having won the shot put event at the Asian Championshipsin Wuhan, China on 3 June 2015.In the first leg, India won a total ofeight medals which included 2 Gold, 1 Silver and 5 Bronze medals.

7. Sachin Tendulkar named as greatest Test player of21st century

i. Former Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar was voted as the BestTest Player of the 21st century in an online poll titled Top-100 Testplayers' list since 2000. The result of poll conducted by CricketAustralia’s website, cricket.com.au was released in the fourth weekof June 2015.

                                          

ii. Sachin received highest number of votes (23 percent votes) toemerge on the top of list of 100 best Test players since 2000. Thesurvey was participated by more than 16000 fans.

8. R Ashwin breaks into top 10 of ODI bowlers’rankings

i. Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has jumped two places tothe 10th position in the ICC bowler’s rankings issued today.

ii. Ashwin, who bagged six wickets in the three ODIs againstBangladesh, was India’s leading wicket-taker in the just-concludedthree-match series against Bangladesh and is also the only Indian tofeature in the top-10 list.

iii. Bengal medium-pacer Mohammed Shami, who missed the series,which was India’s first bilateral loss to Bangaldesh (1-2), due toinjury is the only other Indian bowler in the top-20 list at the 12thposition.

iv. In the batting chart, Virat Kohli tops the Indian player’slist at the fourth position as opener Shikhar Dhawan, who was theleading run-getter in the series with an accumulated score of 158,dropped a place to seventh.

v. Dhawan still stays well clear of skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni,who occupies the eight spot in the table led by South Africa’s ABde Villiers.

vi. Suresh Raina has also improved his ranking by two places to18th.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 24th June 2015
 

1. Five banks to lead NTPC’s debut masala bondoffering

i. Barclays, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, HSBC and SBI CapitalMarkets are being tipped to lead NTPC’s debut issuance of offshorerupee-linked bonds.

ii. The five lenders also led NTPC’s US dollar offering lastNovember, when it raised $500 million through a 10-year Reg S-onlybond priced to yield 205bp over Treasuries.

iii. NTPC, the country’s largest power company, is among ahandful of Indian companies waiting to raise funds through this newmarket once the Reserve Bank of India finalises guidelines on suchissues.

iv.The offshore notes, also called masala bonds, will be issuedunder India’s external commercial borrowing guidelines.

2. Bhuvan Ganga Mobile Application launched to aidNational Mission for Clean Ganga

i. Union Government has launched Bhuvan Ganga Mobile Applicationand Web Portal to aid flagship mission to Clean Ganga.

ii. The app and webportal was launched by Union Minister of WaterResources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Uma Bharti in NewDelhi.

                                      

iii. Bhuvan Ganga application: It will facilitate public to uploadpictures of pollution sources of the Ganga River for further actionby the authorities concerned.  It will also serve platform forpeople to monitor pollution in river Ganga and enable decision makersto prioritize interventions.

iv. Bhuvan Ganga Portal: It is deployed as part of Indian SpaceResearch Organisation’s (ISRO’s) Bhuvan’s geoportal with allgeospatial layers related to Ganga River. It will be used as a toolto support decision making and planning for the Clean Ganga Mission.

3. India emerges as third largest FDI source for UnitedKingdom

i. India has emerged as the third largest Foreign DirectInvestment (FDI) source for United Kingdom (UK) in 2014-15.

ii. It was revealed in recently released report Inward InvestmentReport 2014-15 of UK Trade and Industry (UKTI). This FDI source wasbased in terms of number of projects i.e. source of inwardinvestment.

iii. US has remained the largest source of inward investment forUK with a total of 564 projects in 2014-15 and was followed by France(124 projects) and India (122 projects).

iv. During the year 2014-15, the FDI from India increased by 65per cent and has resulted in creation of 7,730 jobs as well asprotection of 1,620 jobs in UK. Sector wise Indian companies hadinvested in healthcare, agriculture-technology, food and drink.

4. India ranked 143rd in Global Peace Index, wasted$340 billion due to violence

i. The research firm based in Australia has ranked India as the143rd out of the 162 nations listed in the Global Peace Index.

ii. The economic impact of containing and dealing with theconsequences of India’s levels of violence was estimated to costthe national economy $341.7 billion in 2014.

iii. The peace index also indicated that since the last eightyears India has fallen 6% in the ranking due to the “deteriorationsin indicators measuring deaths from external conflict, politicalterror and perceptions of criminality.”

5. Lucknow zoo renamed after last Nawab Wajid Ali Shah

i. Uttar Pradesh Government on 23 June 2015 renamed the LucknowPrani Udyan, popularly known as Lucknow zoo, as Nawab Wajid Ali ShahPrani Udyan, Lucknow.  

ii. Shah was the last Nawab of Oudh under whom the province wasannexed by the British under the policy of Doctrine of Lapse in 1856.Later, Shah was exiled to Matia Birj in Bengal.

iii. Lucknow Zoo established in 1921 and named after England’sPrince of Wales as Prince of Wales Zoological Gardens was renamed asLucknow Prani Udyan on 4 June 2001.

iv. Since independence, it is the first incident in which amonument was named after a Nawab of Oudh or Avadh.

v. Besides, the state government also renamed Nawabganj BirdSanctuary of Unnao district as Shaheed Chandra Shekhar Azad PakshiVihar, Nawabganj. The sanctuary was named after revolutionary freedomfighter Chandra Shekhar Azad because of Azad’s parental ties withUnnao district.

vi. Azad was born on 23 July 1906 in Alirajpur district in MadhyaPradesh but his father Sitaram Tiwari, belonged to Badarka village inUnnao district.

vii. The decisions of renaming the zoo and bird sanctuary weretaken at a cabinet meet chaired by Uttar Pradesh Chief MinisterAkhilesh Yadav.

6. Steffi Graf appointed as Kerala’s Ayurveda brandambassador

i. Tennis legend Steffi Graf was on Wednesday appointed theAyurveda brand ambassador of Kerala.

ii. The Kerala tourism department was given sanction to sign anagreement with Graf to become Ayurveda brand ambassador as part ofthe department's 'Visit Kerala Scheme', Chandy said.

iii. The tourism department had already held discussions andreached an agreement with the German former World number one tennisplayer, who had bagged 22 Grand slam single titles.

iv. Kerala's Ayurveda, an ancient system of health care which isfamous for its holistic effect on body and mind, attracts a largenumber of people from the country and abroad every year.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 23rd June 2015
 

1. Rajasthan topped the list of States commissioninggrid connected Solar Power projects

i. Rajasthan topped the list of states commissioning gridconnected solar power projects in the country with an installedcapacity of 1147 megawatt. The list was released by the Unionministry of New and Renewable Energy on 4 June 2015.

ii. Gujarat, which remained the undisputed leader in solar energygeneration till 2014, came second with an installed capacity of1000MW.

iii. The state has also signed MoUs with power developers likeSunEdison, Adani Enterprises, Reliance Power and Azure Power thatwill generate 14000 MW solar power. National Thermal PowerCorporation (NTPC) is already in the process of commissioning 680 MWin the state.

2. Kerala Government declares June 22 as ‘Snake BirdDay’

i. Kerala Government has declared June 22 as ‘Snake Bird Day’in a bid to protect the endangered species which is also known asIndian darter. The formal announcement was made by State minister forforest Thiruvanchur Radhakrishnan at a function organised by SnakeBird Foundation in Thiruvananthapuram.

ii. It is water bird which is also known as Indian darter (Anhingamelanogaster). It has large slender long-necked water bird and ismostly black with silver wing markings.

iii. As per IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, Snake Bird isclassified as Near Threatened species. Threat: Its population ismoderately declining owing anthropogenic reasons like pollution,drainage, hunting and the collection of eggs and nestlings.

iv. It inhabits in shallow inland wetlands including rivers,lakes, swamps and reservoirs. In case of India there are over 1500snake birds in which majority are found in Kerala. These speciesusually nests atop tall trees near wetlands.

3. Maharashtra topped the list of States and UTs in IPRfiling in 2013-14: IBEF report

i. India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF) in the third week of June2015 released a report on Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) filingin India during 2013-14.

ii. While Maharashtra topped the list of states and UnionTerritories (UTs), Bengaluru was the top city in IPR filing.

iii. Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Siddaganga Institute ofTechnology, Tumakuru and Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)figured in the top 10 scientific bodies and institutions with 32, 24and 12 filings respectively.

iv. India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), is a trust establishedby the Department of Commerce, Union Ministry of Commerce andIndustry.

4. Maharashtra declares Blue Mormon as ‘Statebutterfly’

i. Maharashtra has officially declared Blue Mormon species asState butterfly as part of state symbols. Decision in this regard wastaken in State Wildlife Board meeting presided by Chief MinisterDevendra Fadnavis in Mumbai.

ii. With this, Maharashtra became the first State in the countryto have a State butterfly.

iii. Blue Mormon (Papilio polymnestor) is the second largestbutterfly species in terms of size, after the southern birdwing(Troides minos).

iv. Blue Mormon has black, velvet wings with bright blue spots.The lower ends of its wings are black. Its body has some red spots onone side. Distribution: It is only found (endemic to) in Sri Lanka,Western Ghats of Maharashtra, South India and coastal belts of thecountry.

5. Sister Nirmala Joshi, former head of Missionaries ofCharity, died

i. Sister Nirmala Joshi, who succeeded Mother Teresa as the headof Missionaries of Charity, died on 22 June 2015 following aprolonged illness in Kolkata. She was 81. Sister Nirmala's life wasdevoted to service, caring for poor and underprivileged.

ii. On 13 March 1997, six months before Mother Teresa's death in1997, Sister Nirmala was selected as the Superior General of theMissionaries of Charity. In April 2009, Sister Mary Prema was electedto succeed Sister Nirmala during a general chapter held in Calcutta.

iii. Sister Nirmala was born in Ranchi on 23 July 1934 to aBrahmin soldier who came from Nepal. She had joined the Order at theage of 17.

6. SoftBank Corp, Bharti Enterprises Limited andFoxconn formed a JV named SBG Cleantech Ltd

i. Japan headquartered telecommunications and Internet majorSoftBank Corp, Bharti Enterprises Limited and Taiwan-based FoxconnTechnology Group on 22 June 2015 formed a Joint Venture (JV) namedSBG Cleantech Limited. This JV is aimed at promoting the adoption ofclean and safe energy in India.

ii. SBG Cleantech will be a harbinger of solar and wind energy.The venture will invest in developing renewable energy plants acrossIndia. SBG Cleantech will be committed to contribute to UnionGovernment's mission of 24x7 power for all and achieving 100GW solarand 60GW wind target by 2022.

iii. SBG Cleantech will have Manoj Kohli, a Bharti EnterprisesLimited veteran, as its executive chairman and Raman Nanda will bethe Chief Executive Officer of the company. The company will beheadquartered in Delhi.

7. EPFO made UAN mandatory for all employers underEmployee Provident Fund Act, 1952

i. Employee Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) on 22 June 2015notified an order to make Universal Account Number (UAN) mandatoryfor all employers covered under the Employees Provident Funds andMiscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952.

ii. The UAN facility that remains portable throughout the lifetimeof an employee was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 1October 2014. The deadline for completing the formalities of UAN isAugust 2015.

iii. Till date, EPFO has issued more than four crore UANs toemployers across the nation and more than 56 lakh workers haveactivated their portable PF account numbers.  

 

                                  Current Affairs - 21st & 22ndJune 2015
 

1. International Yoga Day: Stamps, coins and commerce

i. The government of India has released stamp s and coins of thedenomination of Rs.10 and Rs.100 on International Yoga Day (IYD) onJune 21.

ii.The Department of Posts is bringing out stamp and the financeministry coins.

iii. Also, on IYD, the Discovery Channel has telecasted a shortfilm 'The Story of Yoga' to take viewers through a journey ofrediscovering the Indian ancient practice.

2. India sets two Guinness world records onInternational Yoga Day

i. India has set two Guinness world records (GWR) in Rajpath yogaevent held on the eve of first International Yoga Day led by PrimeMinister Narendra Modi.

ii. First record is the largest number of participants- 35,985people had participated in largest yoga demonstration at a singlevenue i.e. Rajpath yoga event.

                                         

iii. Second is the most number of nationalities at a single event–People of 84 nationalities performed yoga at one place.  

iv. The awards were received by Union AYUSH Minister Shripad YessoNaik from representatives of Guinness World Records.

v. In this event all participants of all ages had performedvarious yoga exercises on the entire two-km stretch from Rafi Margcrossing near Vijay Chowk to India Gate. This mass yoga event hasbroken previous world record on mass yoga exercise which was set by29,973 students from 362 schools on November 19, 2005 led byVivekananda Kendra at Jiwaji University Gwalior.

3. France announced ban on earphones for Drivers andCyclists

i. France on 18 June 2015 announced a ban on wearing earphoneswhile driving a vehicle and riding a cycle. The ban will come intoeffect from 1 July 2015.

ii. The ban was announced with an aim to reduce deaths due toaccidents.

iii. Those found using earphones while driving a vehicle or ridinga cycle will be fined 135 Euro (214 US dollar) and lose three licensepoints. However, use of phone while having the caller on loud speakerwill be allowed.

iv. The announced ban was initially proposed in January 2015 tocut down death toll on the roads in France and to improve driver’sattention while driving. The officials said that one in 10 deaths waslinked to mobile phone use while driving.

4. Overnight Liquid Transaction facility on NSE’sWeb-based Mutual Fund platform began functioning

i. National Stock Exchange (NSE) on 22 June 2015 operationalisedthe Overnight Liquid Transaction facility on its web-based MutualFund Service System (MFSS) platform. The platform was launched on 19June 2015.

ii. The facility allows the participants to place purchase andredemption orders simultaneously in liquid schemes. This facilitywill only be available on MFSS Web based platform and in Physicalmode only.

iii. Earlier in May 2015, a similar product was introduced byBombay Stock Exchange (BSE) which has so far seen daily transactionsof worth 400-500 crore rupees.

5. Vocalist Sanjay Subrahmanyam selected for ‘SangitaKalanidhi’ award 2015

i. One of the foremost south Indian classical vocalists, SanjaySubrahmanyam has been selected for the ‘Sangita Kalanidhi’ award2015. It will be bestowed upon him when he will preside over the 89thannual conference of the Academy which will be held between December15, 2015 and January 1, 2016.

ii. With this, he is seventh artistes to be conferred with theaward before completing 50 years of age. Others are AriyakudiRamanuja Iyengar, Maharajapuram Viswanatha Iyer, Musiri SubramaniaIyer, G.N. Balasubramaniam, Semmangudi R. Srinivasa Iyer, M.L.Vasanthakumari and M. Balamuralikrishna

iii. Sangita Kalanidhi is a prestigious award bestowed annuallyupon an expert of Carnatic Music by the Madras Music Academy. Theaward’s name has been derived from Sanskrit which means treasure ofMusic and art in English. This honour is considered one of thehighest awards in Carnatic music.

6. HAL delivers ‘Orbiter Craft Module Structure’ ofChandrayaan-2 to ISRO

i. HAL has delivered ‘Orbiter Craft Module Structure’ ofChandrayaan-2 to ISRO Satellite Centre (ISAC).

ii. The Orbiter Craft Module structure is a 3 tonne category busstructure made out of a central composite cylinder, shear webs anddeck panels

iii. The Chandrayaan-2 mission is aimed at placing an Orbiteraround the moon and sending a Lander and Rover to the surface of themoon. It will be launched by a Geo-Stationary Satellite LaunchVehicle (GSLV-MKII).

iv. HAL has partnered and supported ISRO throughout its journey byproviding hardware for satellites, SLV, ASLV, PSLV, GSLVMKII and GSLVMKIII (LVM3).

7. Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg of Germany won AustrianGrand Prix of Formula One

i. Mercedes racing driver Nico Rosberg of Germany on 21 June 2015won the Austrian Grand Prix Formula 1 World Championship title. Hewon the final race held at the Spielberg circuit in Styria, Monaco.

ii. While his teammate Lewis Hamilton of Britain stood at thesecond position, Felipe Massa of Brazil representing the Williamsteam was at the third position.

iii. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) of the Ferrari team stood at thefourth position.

iv. It is the eleventh overall championship title for Rosberg andthe second title in Austria having won the 2014 title too.

v. It is also the third title in the 2015 season. He won theChampionships in Monaco and Spanish in early 2015.

vi. Nico Hulkenberg (Germany) and Sergio Perez (Mexico) of ForceIndia stood at the 8th and 9th positions respectively in the finalrace.

8. Federer Wins Weber Title for Eighth Time

i. Roger Federer showed he was ready for Wimbledon by defeatingAndreas Seppi of Italy, 7-6 (1), 6-4, on Sunday in Halle, Germany, toclaim his record-setting eighth Gerry Weber Open title.

ii. It was Federer’s fourth title of the season, after wins atBrisbane, Dubai and Istanbul, and a timely boost for Wimbledon eightdays before the tournament begins.

iii. Andy Murray claimed his 34th career title and third title ofthe season with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over unseeded Kevin Anderson inthe final of the grass-court Queen’s Club tournament in London.Murray joined John McEnroe, Boris Becker, Andy Roddick and LleytonHewitt as four-time winners of the event.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 20th June 2015

 

1.  PM to launch 3 flagship schemes for urbanrevamp on June 25.

i. The three big ticket projects — Smart Cities Mission, AtalMission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) and theHousing for All, now named as Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY), areworth Rs. four lakh crore.

ii. It marks a red-letter day in the history of urban developmentin the country with the simultaneous launch of AMRUT, PMAY and SmartCities Mission.

iii. The Prime Minister will also release operational guidelinesfor the three urban missions besides unveiling logos and tag lines,according to a senior Urban Development Ministry official.

2. State Government initiative to make Arunachal anorganic state.

i. In a bid to make Arunachal Pradesh a hundred per cent organicstate, the State government decided to launch “State Soil HealthMission”.The programme aims at proper documentation of soil healthand preparation of soil map.

ii. Arunachal Pradesh government which is among the top fivestates for devolution of powers to Panchayati Raj, has initiatedsteps to strengthen the urban local self-governance to enhancerevenue base of urban local bodies.

3. Jharkhand Government banned sale of thermocol plates

i. Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghuvar Das on 19 June 2015 imposed aban on sale of thermocol plates in entire state. The decision wastaken with an aim to promote leaf plates and generate employment forthe poor and tribal people of the state, who are engaged in makingleaf plates.

ii. The Chief Minister, who is on a two-day visit to WestSinghbhum district including naxal-affected Saranda, also announcedone lakh rupees to the villages which will become liquor-free.

iii. Besides, the Chief Minister also directed officials toprovide electricity in the Saranda area through solar power.

4.  Sushma Swaraj leaves for New York forInternational Yoga Day event

i. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj today left for New Yorkwhere she is going to participate in the International Yoga Day eventbeing organised by the Indian Mission at the United Nations.

ii. She will represent India next week in Nepal at a globaldonors' conference aimed at raising funds for the earthquake-hitcountry(Nominated by PM Shri Narendra Modi).

5.  China launched world’s first electricpassenger aircraft BX1E.

i. China launched the world’s first electric passenger aircraftnamed BX1E that could be used in pilot training, tourism, meteorologyand rescue operations.

ii. The aircraft was designed together by Shenyang AerospaceUniversity and Liaoning General Aviation Academy located in thenortheastern Liaoning Province of China.

6. Brightest Galaxy in Early Universe named afterCristiano Ronaldo as CR7

i. Scientists in third week of June 2015 named a newly discoveredgalaxy after Portuguese football player Cristiano Ronaldo. The galaxywas labeled as CR7 (COSMOS Redshift 7).

ii. CR7 is three times brighter than the brightest distant galaxyknown till now, called Himiko. This brightest galaxy was discoveredin the early universe that contains the first generation of stars.For this discovery, they used ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT).

7.  India Unlimited’ to boost synergies betweenIndian and Swedish entrepreneurs.

i. India Unlimited ? - a platform for connecting India andSweden in every field where both stand to gain.

ii. Seeking synergies between Swedish and Indian entrepreneurship,Indian mission in Sweden has launched ‘India Unlimited’ platform.

iii. The aim of the platform ‘India Unlimited’ is promotingBrand India in Sweden and Brand Sweden in India.

8.  Serbia edge Brazil in final to clinch FifaU-20 World Cup title.

i. Serbia pulled off a historic 2-1 win in extra time to beatheavily favoured Brazil in the final of the Fifa Under-20 World Cupin Auckland on Saturday.

ii. Serbia, playing in the FIFA U-20 World Cup for the first timeas an independent nation, will leave as its champions.Auckland'sNorth Harbour Stadium. Nemanja Maksimovic's decisive, 118th-minutegoal settled the final 2-1 in favour of the delirious Serbians, andleft five-time champions Brazil to settle for silver.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 19th June 2015

 

1.  India set for World Yoga Day on 21 June 2015.

i) International day of yoga is also called as the world yoga day.United Nations General Assembly has declared 21st of June as anInternational Yoga Day on 11th of December in 2014.Launching aparticular date of practicing yoga all across the world andcelebrating as yoga day was initiated by the Indian Prime Minister tothe United Nations General Assembly.

ii) Official name of this day is UN International Yoga Day andalso called as Yoga Day. It is a worldwide event celebrated by thepeople of all countries through practicing yoga, meditation, debates,meetings, discussions, variety of cultural performances, etc.WorldYoga Day or International Day of Yoga would be celebrated by thepeople throughout the world first time on 21st of June in 2015, atSunday.

iii) In a country-wide campaign, the Confederation of IndianIndustry (CII) is organising yoga sessions for India Inc on Sunday(June 21), the International Day of Yoga. Thousands ofrepresentatives of industry, including CEOs, employees and familymembers, are rolling out their yoga mats to participate in the event.

2.  India offers Tanzania expertise in natural gassector

i) India on Friday offered its expertise to Tanzania indevelopment of its potentially rich natural gas sector and decided toextend e-tourist visa to people of the African nation even as the twocountries signed eight MoUs to expand engagements in diverseareas.During extensive talks Prime Minister Narendra Modi had withTanzanian President Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, both the countries alsodecided to establish a Joint Working Group to strengthen cooperationin counter terrorism.

ii)The MoUs signed included a loan agreement between Exim Bank andTanzanian government on a line of credit for $ 268.35 million forextension of a pipeline project and cooperation in the field ofhydrology, tourism and agriculture.India is the largest tradingpartner of Tanzania in Africa with bilateral trade in 2013-14 beingmore than $4 billion.

3.  Aakar Patel appointed as Executive Director ofAmnesty International India

i) Journalist and writer Aakar Patel appointed as ExecutiveDirector of Amnesty International (AI) India. He will head AI India’soperations and its efforts to end human rights abuses in India andworldwide.Patel as the organization’s chief political advisor,strategist and spokesperson will give direction to its goal of beingan independent, effective, and deep-rooted organization in India.

ii) Patel’s previous work includes

• India: Low Trust Society (2015)
•Rights and Wrongs, a report on the 2002 Gujarat riots whichhe co-authored
• Worked as a columnist withpublications in India and Pakistan
• Televisionand radio work as an independent expert

4.  China and Australia formally sign free tradeagreement

i)China and Australia have signed a trade agreement that is set toincrease market access for Australian beef and wine exporters whileboosting Chinese carmakers and electronics producers who wish to selltheir goods to Australians.

ii) One flashpoint is the inclusion of an investor-state disputesettlement (ISDS) clause, which grants foreign companies the right tosue governments for breaching commitments in such agreements. TheAustralian union movement has also raised concerns about the accessto be granted to Chinese citizens under labour market provisions.

iii) The Australian prime minister, Tony Abbott, said theagreement would give each nation “unprecedented access to eachother’s markets” and pointed to the reduction in tariffs imposedon trade.
“It removes barriers to Australian agriculturalexports across a range of products, including beef, dairy, lamb,wine, horticulture and seafood,”

5.  SBI launches online forex platform

i)State Bank of India (SBI), the country’s largest bank, haslaunched SBI eforex, an Internet-based platform that enablescustomers to book their foreign exchange transactions online.

ii) This smart platform facilitates the customers of the bank toobtain forex rates without having to physically visit the branch.

iii) SBI eforex is an innovative platform incorporating robustsecurity features and is designed to be user-friendly, fast andconvenient. It is a highly flexible product offering the facility tothe customers to customise and set their own limits for deal size,daily transaction limits etc. Details of all deals done are madeavailable to the users on a real-time basis.

iv) Under the forex segment, SBI had recently launched 'Fx Out'which enables sending of foreign currency remittances from any itsbranches in India.

6. Chinese Version of Bhagavad Gita launched in China

i. The Chinese Version of the sacred ancient Indian scriptureBhagavad Gita was on 17 June 2015 launched in China during aninternational yoga conference. The book was released by IndianAmbassador to China Ashok K. Kantha.

ii. The book was translated by Chinese Professor Wang Zhu Chengand Ling Hai of the Zhejiang University in Shanghai and was publishedby the Sichuan People’s Publications.

iii. The foreword to the book was written by K. Nagaraj Naidu, whowas the Consul-General at the Indian Consulate in Guangzhou.

iv. This is perhaps the first time that a well known Hindu ancientreligious text has been published in China. Last year, scholars fromIndia and China published an Encyclopedia on the age-old culturalcontacts between the two countries, tracing back their history toover 2000 years.

7.  Union Government launched weather alertservice NOWCAST

i) Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh launched a weatheralert service named NOWCAST.NOWCAST will be used to send SMS alertson extreme weather data like hailstorm, thunderstorm and squalloriginated by India Meteorological Department (IMD) to over one crorefarmers whose mobile numbers are registered on government’s mKisanportal.Further, the mKisan portal will send warning SMSs to farmerslocated in affected district/blocks. These warnings will help thefarmers to take precautionary measures as needed and feasible.

                                      

ii)The SMS will be sent in English, Hindi and regional languagesas per farmers’ request.This technological break-through is acollaborative effort between mKisan Portal developed by DAC, weathertechnologies adopted by IMD and GIS Portal of NIC.

iii)Radha Mohan Singh also launched Insurance Web-Portals forFarmers (www.farmer.gov.in/insurance)that will enable farmers to insure their crops under three schemes.

iv)Prevailing provisions under which farmers can insure theircrops are

• National Agriculture Insurance Scheme(NAIS)
• Modified National Insurance Scheme(MNAIS)
• Weather based Crop Insurance Scheme(WBCIS)
Besides, Coconut Palm Insurance Scheme (CPIS) also isapplicable in some parts of the country.

8. Micromax launched world’s slimmest 4G phoneMicromax Canvas Sliver 5

i. Micromax on 18 June 2015 launched the world’s slimmest andlightest 4-Generation (4G) phone named as Micromax Canvas Sliver 5.As per Micromax, it is the first smartphone to weigh below 100 grams.

Highlights of the Micromax Canvas Sliver 5

• The 97-gram device comes in a 5.1 mm thickbody, the lightest one yet.
• It comes with a4.8 inch AMOLED touchscreen with high definition (1280x720 pixels)resolution.
• The display has Corning GorillaGlass 3 protection as well.
• The handset isarmed with the Android Lollipop operating system that runs on the 64bit, 1.2 GHz quad core Snapdragon 410 processor and 2GB DDR3 RAM.
•The smartphone comes with only one SIM slot but offers 4Gconnectivity.
• For photography enthusiast, itoffers an 8 megapixel rear camera with Sony IMX219 and CMOS sensorand Blue glass filter. In the front, there is a 5 megapixel camera.
•It has a 2000 mAh battery Li-Po battery which Micromax claims offer 8hours of talktime and 345 hours of standby.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 18th June 2015

 

1. Union Cabinet approves Solar Power capacity targetto 1 lakh MW under JNNSM by 2022

i. Union Cabinet approved increasing India’s solar powercapacity target under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission(JNNSM) to 1 Lakh Mega Watt (MW) by 2022.

ii. 1 Lakh Mega Watt (MW) target principally will comprise of40,000 MW from Rooftop and 60,000 MW through Large and Medium ScaleGrid Connected Solar Power Projects.

iii. After meeting this ambitious target, India will become one ofthe largest Green Energy producers in the world by surpassing severaldeveloped countries.

iv. These projects will help in generation of additional 2000 MWcapacity of Grid-connected solar power projects and create employmentof about 12,000 people in rural and urban areas. It will also help toreduce about 3.41 Million Tonnes (MT) of carbon emissions into theopen environment every year.

2. Beno Zephine becomes first 100% blind officer in IFS

i. The 25-year-old from Chennai was informed by the externalaffairs ministry on Friday that she has been inducted into the IndianForeign Service, the first 100 per cent visually-challenged person togain entry into the 69-year-old service.

ii. Former diplomats have hailed the decision to allow 100 percent visually challenged people into the service.

iii. She was working as a probationary officer for state bank ofIndia.

3. Japan's Parliament passed a Bill to lower voting agefrom 20 to 18

i. Parliament of Japan (Diet) on 17 June 2015 passed a bill tolower the voting age from 20 to 18. The bill that seeks revision ofthe public office election law was passed by the House of Councilors(upper house) after being approved in the House of Representatives(lower house).

ii. The legislation will come into effect during the 2016 UpperHouse Election and will add about 2.4 million new potential voters toJapan’s current voting population of 104 million.

iii. The passage of the bill follows a law passed in 2014 thatsought to lower the voting age to 18 years in 2018 for nationalreferendums on the Constitution.

iv. Last time, Japan lowered the age of voting from 25 to 20 andgave voting rights to women in 1945 after the World War II.

4. Hindi writers Babusha Kohli, Upasana won 10thNavlekhan Award of Bharatiya Jnanpith

i. 10th Navlekhan Award of Bharatiya Jnanpith was awarded to Hindiwriters Babusha Kohli and Upasana on 16 June 2015. They were awardedfor poem Prem Gilhari Dil Akhrot and novel EkZindagi Ek Ek Script Bhar respectively.

ii. The awards ceremony held at India Habitat Centre, New Delhisaw discussion on Contemporary Modern Poetry and Fiction Writing bywriters Upasana & Jitendra Biseria and poetry recital by BabushaKohli & Dilip Shakya.

iii. Navlekhan Award was instituted with an objective to awardyoung authors writing in Hindi.

5. Odisha State Co-op Bank launches Bank on Wheels

i. Intervening directly  the Odisha  State Co-operative Bank is going to launch the ‘Bank on Wheels’ to helpfarmers get loans on their doorstep. Twenty vans with ATM facilitywill move around 20 remote and tribal pockets in Keonjhar, Koraput,Kalahandi, Mayurbhanj, Sundargarh and Sambalpur districts for thepurpose.

ii. The Centre has provided Rs 6 crore, at the rate of Rs 30 lakhfor each vehicle, to agriculture department for the scheme underRashtriya Krishi Bikas Yojana.

iii. Anyone can withdraw money from the mobile ATMs though thescheme is meant for farmers

6. Union Cabinet gives nod to introduction of Bureau ofIndian Standards Bill, 2015

i. Union Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modihas approved introduction of Bureau of Indian Standards Bill, 2015 incoming session of Parliament.

ii. The Bureau will perform its functions through a GoverningCouncil consisting of President and other members.

iii. Mandatory certification regime: Empower government to bringmandatory certification regime for articles, processes or serviceswhich it considers necessary.

iv. Simplified conformity assessment schemes: In order to allowease of doing business, the bill allows multiple types of simplifiedassessment schemes. It includes Self Declaration of Conformity (SDOC)against any standard which will give multiple simplified options tomanufacturers.

v. Mandatory hallmarking: provisions related to compulsoryhallmarking of precious metal articles. Strengthening penalprovisions: It will help for better and effective compliance of lawand enable compounding of offences for violations.

7. ‘Op DOGA’ to secure Yoga Day event

i. Foolproof security arrangements made at the venue of theInternational Yoga Day event on Rajpath this weekend have been dubbed‘Operation DOGA’ – a combination of the words,dog and Yoga - in line with the magnitude of the deployment ofsecurity dogs for the purpose.

                                      

ii. As the venue around India Gate-Rajpath will be visited byclose to 40,000 people, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi thisSunday, its peripheries and core areas have already been handed overfor security checks to an undisclosed number of canine troops.

iii. The ITBP, nominated as the national ‘centre for excellence’for sniffer and police dogs training, has put on job a special breedof Belgian Shepherd, ‘Malinois’, who gained prominence across theworld after they reportedly participated in the strike of the U.S.Navy SEAL commandos on Al-Qaida chief Osama Bin Laden.

8. G Gurucharan given additional charge as DirectorGeneral of Bureau of Indian Standards

i. Senior IAS officer G Gurucharan was on 17 June 2015 givenadditional charge as Director General, Bureau of Indian Standards(BIS) for three months. He will hold the additional charge till theappointment of a regular incumbent or until further orders.

ii. Gurucharan is a 1982-batch IAS officer of Karnataka cadre.Presently, he is serving as an Additional Secretary in Department ofFood and Public Distribution.

iii. The post of Director General has been lying vacant since MJJoseph resigned and assumed the charge of Director of ControllerGeneral of Accounts on 15 May 2015. Joseph was appointed as DG of BISon 6 January 2015.

iv. On the other hand, Anoop Kumar Srivastava was given additionalcharge of Secretary, Inter State Council Secretariat under Union HomeMinistry for three months. Srivastava, a 1981-batch IAS officer ofAssam-Meghalaya cadre, is working as Secretary (Border Management).

 

                                         Current Affairs - 17th June 2015

 

1. BSNL to set up 40,000 wi-fi hot spots India

i. State owned telecommunications giant Bharat Sanchar NigamLimited (BSNL) has announced to set up 40,000 Wireless Fidelity(Wi-Fi) hot spots across the country.

ii. This project will come in lines with new digital architecturewhich is part of Union Government’s flagship Digital IndiaProgramme. The 40,000 wi-fi hot spots project will be entailed withan investment of about 6,000 crore rupees. The project is likely tobe completed by 2018.

iii. It was announced by Union Minister of Communications & ITRavi Shankar Prasad after launching the Wi-Fi facility at Taj Mahalin Agra, Uttar Pradesh.

iv. BSNL has installed the Wi-Fi facility at the premises of TajMahal as part of the Union Government’s plan to provide freeinternet services at major tourist places across country.

2. Archana Ramasundaram out of CBI, appointed Directorof NCRB

i. Senior IPS officer Archana Ramasundaram has been moved out ofthe CBI and appointed as Director, National Crime Records Bureau(NCRB).

ii. Ramasundaram, a 1980 batch Indian Police Service (IPS) officerof Tamil Nadu cadre, was appointed as Additional Director in CBI inFebruary last year amid controversy.She was not assigned any work onthe direction of the Supreme Court, which is hearing a writ petitionagainst her appointment.

iii. The Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC) has approvedlateral shift of Ramasundaram from the post of Additional Director,CBI to hold Director General or equivalent level post at the Centre.

iv. Ramasundaram's appointment last year had generated quite acontroversy as the CBI locked horns with Central Vigilance Commission(CVC) and Home Ministry over the choice.

3. India and Poland set trade target of 5 billion USdollars by 2018

i. India and Poland set trade target of 5 billion US dollars by2018. The decision was taken on 15 June 2015 at the fourth session ofthe bilateral Joint Commission on Economic Cooperation, held inWarsaw, capital city of Poland.

ii. The commission also identified a series of actions to raisetrade from the 2014 level of 2.3 billion US dollars to 5 billion USdollars by the year 2018.

iii. The meeting of the commission was co-chaired by Amitabh Kant,Secretary, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) andJerzy Pietreiwicz, Secretary of State, Ministry of Economy of Poland.

iv. On the sidelines of the commission meeting, the threeco-chairs of the newly created Joint Working Groups on Coal,Information Technology and Food Processing held their first meetingsand presented the outcomes to the commission.

4. Election Commission suspends recognition of PASangma-led National People’s Party

i. Election Commission of India (ECI) has suspended recognition ofthe PA Sangma-led National People’s Party (NPP) which was arecognized state party in Meghalaya.

ii. The recognition of NPP was suspended under para 16A of theElection Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) Order, 1968 after theparty failed to file the election expenditure statement incurred in2014 Lok Sabha elections.

iii. At present NPP has one Lok Sabha member- PA Sangma from Turaconstituency from Meghalaya. It also has 4 members in RajasthanLegislative assembly and 2 in Meghalaya Legislative assembly.

5. ASCI launches mobile app to curb misleadingadvertisements

i. In a bid to address misleading advertisements, the AdvertisingStandard Council of India (ASCI) launched its consumer complaintmobile application – ASCIonline, to provide consumer complaintservices on a mobile app besides providing the facility online.

ii. Talking about the initiative, Narendra Ambwani, ASCI chairmansaid, “One of the goals of ASCI is to provide convenient access forlodging complaint and hence this launch of mobile app."

iii. Lodge complaints by simply providing advertisement detailsand objection. Users can also attach the files like image or video orYouTube link of that advertisement.

iv. Status of complaints and complaint tracking also made simpleand user-friendly.

6. Govt okays 16 FDI proposals worth Rs. 6,751 cr.

i. The government on Wednesday approved 16 foreign investmentproposals, including those of Torrent Pharmaceuticals and Star IndiaPrivate Limited, amounting to Rs. 6,750.86 crore.

ii. The proposals were cleared during the FIPB meeting held on May28

iii. Broadcaster Star India Private Limited has been givenapproval for further issuance and transfer of shares to its foreigncollaborator and acquisition of another Indian company engaged inbroadcasting sector on a slump sale basis.

iv. Syngene International has been allowed to raise foreigninvestment to 44 per cent from 10 per cent by initial public offeringof equity shares to FIIs, FPIs and NRIs.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 16th June 2015

 

1. Indian Railways rechristened Haridwar Mail as YogaExpress

i. Indian Railways on 15 June 2015 rechristened train No19031/19032 Ahmedabad-Haridwar Mail Express also known as 'HaridwarMail' as Yoga Express. The name was changed with immediate effect.

ii. However, there will be no change in the train timings and itscomposition.

iii. Union Government is observing International Yoga Day on 21June 2015.

2. Union Government launched Augmented RealityApplication named Sakaar

i. The Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development ofNorth-Eastern Region (DoNER) Jitendra Singh on 15 June 2015 launchedan Augmented Reality (AR) application named Sakaar to highlight theachievements of the Department of Space.

ii. The application has been developed by Development andEducational Communication Unit (DECU) of ISRO for Android devices.

iii. Sakaar consists of 3D models of MOM, RISAT, rockets (PSLV,GSLV Mk-III); videos of INSAT 3D-predicting cyclones, GSLV D5/Cryo,Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) orbit insertion, launch video of MOM, 360degree animated view of MOM; Anaglyph of Mars surface.  

iv. The Multimedia content of the Sakaar app is generated with thesupport of multimedia & editing facilities of DECU-ISRO.

3. LIC Nomura Mutual Fund CEO Nilesh Sathe appointedmember, life at IRDAI

i. The government has appointed Nilesh Sathe, Chief ExecutiveOfficer of LIC Nomura Mutual Fund Asset Management Company, as themember-life of insurance regulator IRDAI.

ii. The post was lying vacant since the retirement of S RoyChowdhury in February 2014.

iii. Sathe will be joining the Insurance Regulatory andDevelopment Authority of India (IRDAI) on July 1 and have a four-yearlong tenure at the Hyderabad-headquartered insurance sector watchdog.

iv. Sathe held various positions in LIC, which include ExecutiveDirector (marketing) and Senior Divisional Manager in Mumbai.

4. PM Narendra Modi launched book titled Education ofMuslims by Professor JS Rajput

i. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 15 June 2015 launched a booktitled Education of Muslims: An Islamic Perspective of Knowledge andEducation – Indian Context edited by Professor JS Rajput.

ii. The book is aimed at informing and educating policy-makers,scholars and readers about role of Islam in pursuit of education andknowledge.

iii. The book contains 16 articles written by various scholars andhistorians including JS Rajput on wide ranging issues related tounderstanding of Islam religion, role of Islam and its educationalinstitutions (madrasas) in dissemination of knowledge and educationalstatus of Muslim children in India among others.

iv. JS Rajput is an accomplished educationist and historian. He isa former director of National Council of Educational Research andTraining (NCERT) and Chairman, National Council for Teacher Education(NCTE).

5. UN elected Denmark's Mogens Lykketoft to headGeneral Assembly

i. The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on 15 June 2015elected Denmark's Mogens Lykketoft as its President for its upcoming70th session in September 2015.

ii. He will have tenure of one year and succeeds Uganda's SamKutesa to preside over the 193-member body.

iii. Lykketoft presently is the speaker of Danish Parliament since2011 and is a member of the Social Democrats party.

iv. Earlier from 1993 to 2001, Lykketoft served Denmark as itsForeign and Finance Ministers.

6. Rafael Nadal won Stuttgart Open

i. Spaniard Rafael Nadal on 14 June 2015 won the singles final ofthe ATP’s Stuttgart Open. In the final match in Germany, Nadaldefeated Serbian Viktor Troicki 7-6, 6-3.

ii. It was Rafael Nadal’s third Stuttgart Men’s single title;the previous two were won in 2005 and 2007 respectively. With thisvictory he also became first tennis player to win titles at the eventon both clay and grass surface.

iii. Stuttgart made the switch to grass starting with this editionas part of the new Wimbledon pre-season.

iv. Apart from this, India’s tennis player Rohan Bopanna alongwith his Romanian partner Florin Mergea won the Stuttgart Men’sDouble Open title 2015. The Indo-Romanian pair defeatedAustrian-Brazilian pair of Alexander Peya and Bruno Soares 5-7, 6-2,10-7. This was fourth title for Bopanna.

7. Sunil Chhetri becomes first Indian to score 50international goals

i. Prolific striker Sunil Chhetri on Tuesday became the firstIndian footballer to score 50 international goals during his team's2018 World Cup qualifying match against Guam.

ii. Chhetri's feat, though, came in a losing cause, as Indiasuffered their second successive defeat in the preliminary jointqualification second round.

iii. Former captain Bhaichung Bhutia stays at the second spot with42 goals in 107 matches while IM Vijayan has 40 goals from 79 games.This meanwhile, was Chhetri's 87th match.

iv. For the record, it was Chhetri who scored India's all thegoals in the team's four joint preliminary round 2018 World Cupqualifying games so far.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 15th June 2015

 

1.  Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) launchedIndia Nuclear Insurance Pool (INIP)

i. The Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) on 12 June 2015 launchedthe India Nuclear Insurance Pool (INIP).The INIP has become the 27thsuch insurance pool in the world as countries such as France, Russia,South Africa and the U.S. have put in place such similar risktransfer mechanisms.Features of India Nuclear Insurance Pool (INIP)

ii. It will cover the risks of liability of nuclear operators andsuppliers under Section 6(2) and Section 17 of the Civil Liabilityfor Nuclear Damages (CLND) Act, 2010 respectively.It provides threetypes of policies viz., tier 1 policy for operators, tier 2 policyfor turn key suppliers and tier 3 policy for suppliers other thanturn key supply

2. Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal (BBIN) MotorVehicle Agreement signed in Thimpu

i. India, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal on 15 June 2015 signed theBBIN (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal) Motor Vehicle Agreement inthe Bhutanese capital Thimphu.

ii. The transport ministers of four countries including the UnionMinister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari signed theagreement.

Key Features of BBIN Motor Vehicle Pact

• The regional motor vehicle pact is aimed atregulation of passenger, personal and cargo vehicular traffic amongstfour SAARC member countries.
• It would promotesafe, economical, efficient and environmentally sound road transportin the region.
• It would help each country increating an institutional mechanism for regional integration.
•Each party will bear its own costs arising fromimplementation of this agreement.
• It issimilar to the SAARC Motor Vehicle Agreement (MVA) draft with minorchanges.

3. Railway Ministry decided to run Suvidha Trains

i. Ministry of Railways on 12 June 2015 decided to run Suvidhatrains with dynamic fares from July 2015. The decision to run Suvidhatrains was taken to address the rush during peak travel seasons.

ii. These trains will have dynamic fare system and there will notbe any downward movement of the fare. Also, these trains may be runduring peak seasons like winter rush, summer rush, Dussehra rush,Holi rush and on other occasions.

Some facts about Suvidha Trains

• Only confirmed and RAC tickets will be issuedfor these trains and there will be no waiting list. No concessionlike free passes/complimentary passes/warrant/concessional voucherwill be available on these trains.
• Themaximum advance reservation period will be 30 days while the minimumadvance reservation period will be of 10 days.
• Fulladult fare shall be changed for all passengers irrespective of theirage.
• These tickets can be availed frome-ticketing as well as through PRS counters, but the traveler willhave to carry his prescribed Identity Card during the journey forverification purpose
• Modification orduplicate ticket or cluster bookings or BPT will not be allowed.
•Only General quota bookings will be applicable.
•Upgradation option shall not be applicable in thesetrains.
• There shall be no First AC or FistClass or Executive class or general class or 2nd sitting coach in thetrain composition of Suvidha Trains.Three types of trains to be rununder the Suvidha Trains services
• Fullyair-conditioned services with or without stoppages: Base Price:(Rajdhani base fare + Tatkal charges).
• Mixedservices having no enroute commercial stoppages on mixed Durontopattern: Base price: (Mixed Duronto base fare + Tatkal charges).
•For mixed services having some stoppages enroute and runningas Mail/Express: Base price: (Mail/Express base fare + Tatkalcharges).

4. Ameising Luikham takes over as New Secretary,Department of Public Enterprises

i. Shri Ameising Luikham, IAS (MN:1981) today took over asSecretary, Department of Public Enterprises in the M/o HeavyIndustries & Public Enterprises . Prior to this he was working asSecretary, North Eastern Council, Ministry of Development of NorthEastern Region.

ii. Shri Luikham's appointment is vice Shri Kapil Dev Tripathi,IAS (AM:1980) who already have been appointed as Secretary, Ministryof Petroleum and Natural Gas.

5.  Nasscom signs MoU with IESA

i. The National Association of Software and Services Companies(Nasscom) on Monday signed an MoU with India Electronics andSemiconductor Association (IESA) to speed up 'Make in India' and'Digital India' agenda for electronic system design and manufacturing(ESDM) and IT.

ii. The aim is to create a common agenda that will guide theGovernment and industry to construct policies and an environmentleading to the creation of ESDM and IT products, solutions and brandsout of India.

Vinay Shenoy, Chairman, IESA, said: "By joining forces, weare now better able to address 'Device-Infrastructure-Application'and the interplay between them. Initial focus areas are likely to bepolicy frameworks, enabling capability build-up, knowledge sharing,eco-system discovery and promotion.''
Under the MoU, both industryassociations will bring key stakeholders and partners from industry,Government, academia and investment community closer and identify keyareas of investment.

6.  BSNL launched free roaming today

i. State-run BSNL will launch free roaming, starting today, whichwill allow all its mobile customers across the country to receiveincoming calls at no cost.“Now BSNL mobile customers will not needto carry multiple SIMs and handsets during roaming.

ii. They are free to talk as long as they want without worrying ofany charges during incoming calls.“In fact, it is like a dream of‘One Nation One Number’ coming true,” BSNL CMD AnupamShrivastava said in a statement. One June 2, Telecom Minister RaviShankar Prasad had announced that the telco would be launching freeroaming scheme from June 15.

iii. The company also clarified that it has not received anycommunication from sectoral regulator TRAI regarding the roamingscheme.“We have not received any such communication from TRAI.BSNLhas announced this scheme with the consent of Minister ofCommunications & IT, Ravi Shankar Prasad who himself hadannounced it in a press conference held on June 2. TRAI has noobjection to it,” Shrivastava said

 

                                         Current Affairs - 14th June 2015

 

1. 14th June: World Blood Donor Day

i. World Blood Donor Day is being observed across the world on 14June to raise the public awareness about the need for safe blooddonation.

                                           

ii. The theme of this year’s campaign is Thank you forsaving my life. This year’s campaign encourages donors allover the world to donate blood voluntarily and regularly with theslogan Give freely, give often. Blood donation matters.

iii. Objective

* To spread awareness about the need for safe andsecure blood supplies.
* Provide an opportunityto draw public attention to the importance of blood donation forsaving lives.

2. VK Singh inaugurates first India-China Yoga Collegeat Yunnan Minzu University, China

i. Minister of State (MoS) for External Affairs V K Singhinaugurated first India-China Yoga College at Yunnan Minzu Universityin Kunming, China.

ii. This is first Indian government institution related Indianspiritual art form i.e. Yoga in China inaugurated ahead of the firstUN Yoga Day to be observed on June 21.

iii. The Yoga College was established in lines with the MoU forestablishing the Yoga College signed during the Prime MinisterNarendra Modi’s visit to China in May 2015.

iv. This college seeks to provide certification courses in theIndian spiritual art with them Indian teachers who are going to helpin curriculum development and training.

3.  RBI issued final guidelines for 6-year and13-year Interest Rate Futures

i. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) issued the final guidelines forthe 6-year and 13-year cash settled Interest Rate Futures (IRF) ongovernment securities with residual maturity of 4-8 years and 11-15years respectively under the Interest Rate Futures (Reserve Bank)(Amendment) Directions, 2015. For this purpose, RBI amended theInterest Rate Futures (Reserve Bank) Directions, 2013 dated 5December 2013.

ii. For the 6-year cash settled IRF contracts, the underlyingshall be a coupon bearing government security of face value of 100rupees and the residual maturity of 6-year IRF is between 4 and 8years on the expiry of futures contract.

iii. For the 13-year cash settled IRF contracts, the underlyingcan be a coupon bearing government security of face value of 100rupees and residual maturity will be between 11 and 15 years on theexpiry of futures contract.

iv. Moreover, the RBI  also expanded the residual maturityfor the existing 10-year cash settled IRF from 9-11 years to 8-11years to provide market participants a greater choice and flexibilityto hedge their interest rate risk across different tenors.

4. US becomes world's largest oil producer, says BPReport

i. As per recently released report by British Petroleum (BP)Energy Company, United States (US) became the world’s largest oilproducer in 2014 surpassing Saudi Arabia.

ii. Production: US had produced 11.6 million barrels of oil perday (bpd) i.e. 15.9% more oil in 2014. While, Saudi Arabia was placedsecond position as it had produced 11.5 million bpd in 2014. Russia was placed at third position with 10.8 million bpd oilproduction.

iii. Natural Gas Production: US also has surpassed Russia as theworld’s largest producer of natural gas.

iv. Consumption: China had remained the world’s largest growthmarket for energy in 2014

v. Facts related to India: India’s oil production gad declinedby 1.3% at 895,000 bpd, while the consumption had increased by 3% to3.8 million bpd. India has shown 7.1% rise in energy consumption.

5. Recommendations of Bibek Debroy Committee onrestructuring of Indian Railways

i. The committee has suggested measures for restructuring theRailway Board and its departments so that policy making is separatedfrom day-to-day operations.

ii. Recommendations of Bibek Debroy committee

* Establishment of an independent regulatorRailway Regulatory Authority of India (RRAI) with a separate budgetand to be independent of the Ministry.
* RRAIwill decide on tariffs to revamp the cash-strapped railways.
*Railway Budget should be phased out with gross budgetarysupport to Indian Railways.
* No privatisation ofIndian Railway but allowed participation of private sector in therailway projects.
* State governments should beasked to entirely fund the Government Railway Police (GRP).
*The recommended changes should be implemented only by UnionRailways ministry in the first five years including the resolution ofthe social cost issue.

iii. Background: Union government had constituted the high-levelcommittee in September 2014 to restructure the Railways and suggestways for resource mobilisation. It was seven-member panel headed byeminent economist and NITI Aayog member Bibek Debroy. The other 6members are former cabinet secretary K M Chandrasekhar, Gusharan Das,Ravi Narain, Partha Mukhopadhyay, Rajendra Kashyap, Ajay Tyagi andAjay Narayan Jha.

6.  Government sacks Dr. Bimal Roy, Director ofIndian Statistical Institute

i. Union Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation(MOSPI) has sacked Dr Bimal K Roy as the Director of IndianStatistical Institute (ISI). He was removed from the office oncharges of indiscipline one-and-a-half months before the end of histerm.

ii. Professor Sanghmitra Bandyopadhayay now will replace Dr BimalK Roy as the Director of ISI. With this appointment she has becomethe first woman to lead the institute.

iii. Roy who is a renowned cryptologist was appointed Director ofISI in August 2010. In April 2015, he was conferred with India’sfourth highest civilian honour Padma Shri for his contribution in thediscipline of literature and education.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 13th June 2015

 

1. China launches freight train service connectingEurope

i. China today launched a freight train service between itsnortheastern city of Harbin and Europe, opening a new trade route toEurope covering a distance of nearly 10,000 kms.

ii. The train left Harbin, capital of Heilongjiang province,carrying 49 containers of domestic goods such as electronic productsand auto parts worth US$ three million from northeast and northChina, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

2. Utility bills valid proof of address to openaccount: RBI

i. Bills for postpaid mobile service, piped gas and water supplycan now be submitted as proof of address for opening account withbanks or other financial institutions, the Reserve Bank said today.

ii. Utility bill which is not more than two months old of anyservice provider (electricity, telephone, postpaid mobile phone,piped gas, water bill) for the limited purpose of proof of addressare deemed to be Officially Valid Documents (OVDs) under 'simplifiedmeasures.

3. AP launches ‘Mee Bhoomi’ digital depository ofland records

i. The Andhra Pradesh government has launched `Mee Bhoomi', adigital depository of land records.The portal,http://meebhoomi.ap.gov.in/,makes all land details along with Adangal/Pahani and 1-B details,available to the people.

ii. It also lists details of land owners, area, assessment, watersource, soil type, nature of possession of the land, liabilities,tenancy, and crops grown. One can also view individual/ villageadangal and 1B details on the website.

iii. Besides the survey number or pattadar number, it also givesthe option of entering the Aadhaar card number to view land details.Users can also search for their field measurement book (F.M.B) on thewebsite. The details of any transactions will also be updated on thewebsite.

iv. With respect to grievances related to land, people canregister a complaint at the closest Mee-Seva centre, which willprocess the same within 15 days.Making the portal mobile-friendly,the government has also launched an Android app.

4. Sir Wesley Winfield Hall inducted into the ICCCricket Hall of fame

i. Former West Indies fast bowler Wes Hall was inducted into theICC Cricket Hall of Fame during the lunch break on the opening day ofthe Sabina Park Test between West Indies and Australia.

ii. He became the fourth cricketer to receive the honour this yearafter Betty Wilson, Anil Kumble and Martin Crowe.Hall, 77, receivedhis commemorative cap from fellow Hall of Famer Courtney Walsh, andis now the 18th cricketer from the Caribbean to be bestowed with theaward.

iii. Hall, who played 48 Tests for West Indies between 1958 and1969, said he was "privileged" and "honoured" toreceive the award which put him in the company of the "manygreats of the game"

5. In Haryana village, contest of selfies with daughterto save girl child

i. Haryana's Bibipur village, which wants The Women's World' addedto its name, has now come out with a unique idea to continue itsefforts to create gender-neutral atmosphere in the state.

ii. The village panchyat has decided to organize a best selfiewith daughters' contest to honour the winning family with a trophy,certificate and Rs 2,100 as cash prize.

iii. The panchayat has invited parents to send their selfies tothe village sarpanch on WhatsApp by June 17 while the winner familywould be announced after two days.

iv. Village sarpnach Sunil Jaglan said they that had alreadyreceived more than 120 entries in past four days after they announcedthe contest.

6. 50-lakh penalty on Future Generali

i. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India(IRDAI) has imposed a penalty of 50 lakh on Future Generali LifeInsurance Company.
 
ii. The regulator, which had examined34 charges on a variety of aspects related to business, said thecompany had violated many norms, including not settling ‘huge’number of claims in respect of the group insurance schemes,continuation of corporate agency even after expiry of licence, use ofunlicensed entities for procuring business and distribution of giftvouchers procured from Big Bazar, one of the group companies.

iii. It has been asked to pay the penalty within 15 days,according to an order issued by IRDAI Chairman TS Vijayan.

 

                                         CurrentAffairs - 12th June 2015

 

1. World Day Against Child Labour observed globally

i. The World Day Against Child Labour was on 12 June 2015 observedglobally with the theme NO to child labour – YES to qualityeducation! The day is the United Nations observance to bringawareness against child labour.

World Day Against Child Labour 2015 calls for:

• Free, compulsory and quality education forall children at least to the minimum age for admission to employmentand action to reach those presently in child labour;
•New efforts to ensure that national policies on child labourand education are consistent and effective;
• Policiesthat ensure access to quality education and investment in theteaching profession.

2. TCS, Infosys face US probe for H-1B visa violations

i. The US government has opened an investigation against two ofthe biggest Indian outsourcing companies for possible violations ofH1-B visa rules, according to a media report.

ii. The Department of Labour has opened the investigation againstTata Consultancy Services and Infosys for possible violations ofrules for visas for foreign technology workers under contracts theyheld with an electric utility Southern California Edison

iii. The power company had recently laid off more than 500technology workers amid claims that many of those laid off were madeto train their replacements who were immigrants on the temporary workvisas brought in by the Indian firms

iv. The move by the Labour Department comes days after the NYT hadreported that hundreds of employees at entertainment giant WaltDisney were laid off and replaced with Indians holding H1-B visas.

3. Tamil Nadu and Adani Power Ltd signed PPA to set up200 MW solar power plant in Ramanathapuram

i. Tamil Nadu Government and Adani Power Ltd in the second week ofJune signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) to set up a 200 MW solarpower plant in Ramanathapuram district.

ii. The plant will be constructed with an investment of nearly1400 crore rupees.

iii. The district was chosen by the group because of the fact thatit is one of the two districts along with Thoothukudi that receivehighest solar radiation in the state.

iv. In March 2015, Adani Power Ltd applied to Tamil NaduGeneration and Distribution Corporation (TANGDECO) for a load flowstudy to establish 1000 MW solar plant at Kamuthi in the district.

v. In 2012, the State government unveiled  Solar EnergyPolicy (SEP) that envisaged generation of 1000 MW every year forthree years through utility scale projects, rooftops and RenewableEnergy Certificates (REC) schemes.

4. Renewable energy targets quadruple globally in 10years: IRENA

i. IRENA is an intergovernmental organization to promote adoptionand sustainable use of renewable energy. It is a global hub forrenewable energy cooperation and information exchange within itsmember nations.

ii. The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) hasannounced that in past one decade renewable energy targets havequadruple globally.

iii. It was mentioned IRENA Renewable Energy Target Setting reportwhich was released by IRENA Director-General Adnan Z. Amin on theside lines of IRENA’s 9th Council meeting in Dubai.

iv. As per report, 164 countries have adopted at least one type ofrenewable energy target compared to 43 countries in 2005. All nationsare adopting renewable energy targets to meet multiple objectivesincluding energy security, environmental sustainability andsocio-economic benefits.

v. The majority of 150 countries have focused committed renewableenergy targets on the electricity sector The numbers of countriessetting renewable targets for the heating and cooling sector haveincreased to 47 from 2 countries in 2005.

5. Legendary actor Sir Christopher Lee passes away

i. Legendary English actor, singer and writer Sir Christopher Leepassed away in London, United Kingdom. He was 93. The veteran actorwas famously known as the master of horror for his famous villainyacting roles in numerous movies such as Dracula, The Wicker Man,James Bond, Lord of the Rings trilogy etc.

ii. Christopher Lee was born in London in 1922 Film career: His onscreen acting career began in 1947 after he had the Rank Organisationwhere he was trained as an actor. His career spanned more than 7decades. His famous acting roles include Francisco Scaramanga in TheMan with the Golden Gun (1974), Saruman in The Lord of the Rings filmtrilogy (2001–2003), The Hobbit film trilogy (2012–2014), CountDooku Star Wars trilogy (2002 and 2005) and Star Wars: The Clone Wars(2008).

iii. He also is known for his best performance portraying ofPakistan’s founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah in the biopic Jinnah (1998).Music career: Lee was also known for his singing ability. He hadrecorded various opera and musical pieces between 1986 and 1998.

iv. He also had recorded symphonic metal album Charlemagne: By theSword and the Cross in 2010 after he had worked with several metalbands since 2005. Awards and Honours: He was knighted in 2009 forservices to drama and charity and was awarded the Bafta fellowship in2011 and Spirit of Metal award (2010)

6. Second border haat opens in Sipahijala district ofTripura

i. The second border haat (rural market) was opened for commonpeople at Kamalasagar in Sipahijala district of Tripura borderingBrahmanbaria district of Bangladesh.

ii. The haat was jointly inaugurated by Prime Minister NarendraModi and his Bangladesh counterpart Sheikh Hasina byvideo-conferencing from Dhaka on June 6, 2015. This market is set upat the zero line of the international border with one part on theIndian side and the other in Bangladesh.

iii. Initially it will facilitate bilateral trade of 16shortlisted locally produced goods. These goods include agriculturaland horticultural crops, spices, minor forest products excludingtimber, fish and dry fish, dairy and poultry products, cottageindustry items, wooden furniture, handloom and handicraft items.

iv. People residing within a distance of 5 km from along theborder are entitled to do business at the haat which will take placeonce in a week initially.  No local taxes would be levied on thegoods sold in the haats and currencies of both the countries wouldprevail.

v. First border haat was inaugurated on Srinagar- Purba borderarea in January 2015 by Union Commerce and Industries MinisterNirmala along with her Bangladeshi counterpart Tofail ahmed.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 11th June 2015

 

1. African leaders signed 26-nation Tripartite FreeTrade Area (TFTA) agreement

i. African countries have signed a historic The Tripartite FreeTrade Area (TFTA) that facilitates creation of Africa’s largestfree-trade zone.

ii. This free-trade zone will cover 26 countries in an area fromsouthernmost tip of African continent i.e. Cape Town (South Africa)to Cairo (Egypt) in the north.

iii. The pact was signed in Egypt will intent to ease the movementof goods across 26 member countries which represent more than halfthe continent’s GDP. TFTA pact combines existing three trade blocsamong the African nations viz Southern African Development Community(SADC), East African Community (EAC), Common Market for Eastern andSouthern Africa (COMESA).

iv. It will remove trade barriers on most goods, making themcheaper and stimulating $ 1 trillion worth of economic activityacross the region of more than 600 million people.

2. Indian-Origin Surgeon General Vivek Murthy PresentedWith Pride of Community Award

i. Indian-origin US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy has beenpresented with the Pride of the Community Award by a prominent Hinduadvocacy group.

ii. Receiving the award by the Hindu American Foundation at its12th Annual Day reception at Capitol Hill, Mr Murthy said that hedraws inspiration from the life of Swami Vivekananda.

iii. HAF also awarded Anantanand Rambachan, Professor of Religionat St Olaf College, Dharma Seva award; Harpreet Singh Mokha of theDepartment of Justice, the Mahatma Gandhi Award for the Advancementof Pluralism; and Senator Mark Kirk and Rep Joe Crowley, HAF's Friendof the Community awards.

3. CAD shrinks massively to 0.2 per cent in Q4

i. The country’s current account deficit (CAD) narrowed sharplyto USD 1.3 billion, or 0.2 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP),in the fourth quarter of the last financial year on a sequentialbasis mainly on account of a lower trade gap.

ii. The CAD shrank to 1.3 per cent of GDP for full financial year2014-15.

iii. On a quarter-on-quarter basis, CAD narrowed sharply to USD1.3 billion (0.2 per cent of GDP) in fourth quarter of financial year2014-15 from USD 8.3 billion (1.6 per cent of GDP) in the thirdquarter

4. Stanford scientist Manu Prakash makes water basedcomputer

i. Manu Prakash, who amazed the world last year by building apaper microscope, has now come up with a computer that works bymoving water droplets.

ii. rakash is an assistant professor of bioengineering at StanfordUniversity and he has developed the water computer with the help oftwo of his students. He was born in Meerut, India.

iii. What Prakash did was devise a system in which tiny waterdroplets are trapped in a magnetic field. When the field is rotatedor flipped, the droplets move in precise direction and distance. Thisbecame the basis of the computer clock, which is an essentialcomponent of any computer.

iv. Computer clocks are responsible for nearly every modernconvenience. Smartphones, DVRs, airplanes, internet - without aclock, none of these could operate without frequent and seriouscomplications.

5. Senior scientist Dr. Srivari Chandrasekhar appointedas Director of CSIR-IICT

i. Dr. Srivari Chandrasekhar was appointed Director of CSIR-IndianInstitute of Chemical Technology (IICT) a premier research instituteof Union Government based in Hyderabad, Telangana.

ii. He was named appointed to the top post by Prime MinisterNarendra Modi who is ex-officio Chairman of Council of Scientific andIndustrial Research (CSIR) functioning under Union Ministry ofScience and Technology.

iii. He has made significant contributions in diverse areas oforganic chemistry with a special emphasis total synthesis ofbiologically active natural products, on chiral chemistry andpharmaceutical products.

iv. He also has developed technologies for synthesis of latestanti-tumor and abortive drug mesoprostol, anti-tuberculosis drugbedaquiline and drug for treatment of schizophrenia asenapine etc.Apart from above contributions, he also has more than 250publications with 5,000 citations to his credit.

6. Union Cabinet gives nod to Bangladesh, Bhutan, Indiaand Nepal (BBIN) Motor Vehicle Agreement

i. Union Cabinet meet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi hasapproved the signing of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Nepal (BBIN)Motor Vehicle Agreement.

ii. The agreement which is similar to the SAARC Motor VehicleAgreement (MVA) seeks to regulate the vehicular traffic of passenger,personal and cargo amongst BBIN countries.The agreement will besigned on 15th June 2015 at the Transport Minister’s meeting inThimpu, Bhutan.

iii. BBIN agreement aims to promote safe, environmentally soundand economical efficient road transport in the sub-region of BBIN. Italso seeks to help each member country to create an institutionalmechanism for regional integration.

iv. BBIN agreement will benefit member nations for mutual crossborder movement of passenger and goods for overall economicdevelopment of the region. For implementation of this agreement eachsignatory member will bear its own costs.

7. Forbes list: Dhoni only Indian among world's richestathletes

i. Cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni is the only Indian sportsman inForbes magazine's 100 highest-paid athletes in the world.

ii. Dhoni has been ranked 23rd on the Forbes list of The World'sHighest-Paid Athletes 2015 dropping a notch from his ranking of 22last year.

iii. Dhoni's total earnings stood at $31 million, including amountfrom salary/winnings at $4 million and endorsements worth $27million.

iv. The earnings figures include salaries, prize money and bonusespaid out between June 2014 and June 2015.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 10th June 2015

 

1. Indian Army carried out cross-border operationagainst militants in Myanmar

i. Special Forces of the Indian Army in coordination with the AirForce on 9 June 2015 carried out surgical operations (cross-borderoperation) inside Myanmar to target militant groups.

ii. In this one of the first-of-its-kind cross-border operationabout 50 militants of groups namely NSCN (K) and KYKL were killed.They were hiding along the Nagaland-Myanmar and Manipur-Myanmarborder.

iii. The move for such a surgical operation was taken aftermilitant groups killed 18 jawans of 6 Dogra Regiment of Indian Armyin an ambush in Chandel district of Manipur on 4 June 2015.

iv. The operation was guided by specific and precise intelligenceinput. The strike was carried out inside Myanmar with thecoordination of local authorities.

v. The preparedness and finesse of the operation could be gaugedfrom the fact that Indian Army did not suffer any sort of casualty.

2. Kapil Mishra to Succeed Jitender Tomar as Delhi'sLaw Minister

i. Delhi Jal Board vice chairman Kapil Mishra will succeedJitender Tomar as Delhi's law minister. A letter has been sent to thepresident in this regard.

ii. Mr Tomar had stepped down on Tuesday after being arrested overallegations that he had faked his law degree.

iii. Mr Mishra, the legislator from northeast Delhi's KarawalNagar, was placed in the crucial Jal Board to help realise the AamAadmi Party's election promise of providing cheap water to Delhiites.

3. RBI issues draft norms on rupee-linked bondsoverseas

i. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Tuesday said that Indiancorporates, eligible to raise external commercial borrowings (ECBs),are permitted to issue rupee- linked bonds overseas.

ii. Corporates which are, at present, permitted to access ECB,under the approval route, will require prior permission of the RBI toissue such bonds and those coming under the automatic route can do sowithout prior permission of the RBI.

                                         

iii. The RBI proposed that the subscription, coupon payments andredemption might be settled in foreign currency.

iv. It also stipulated the coupon on the bonds should not be morethan 500 basis points above the sovereign yield of the Government ofIndia security of corresponding maturity as per the FIMMDA yieldcurve prevailing on the date of issue.

4. SEBI cracks down on 200 illicit fund-raisingactivities in 1 year

i. Stepping up action against illicit fund-raising in a big way,SEBI has cracked down on nearly 200 such activities in last one yearrelating to fraud against gullible investors and recovered Rs. 25crore.

ii. SEBI has passed close to 200 orders in last one year againstillegal fund-raising activities and barred individuals and companiesfrom mobilising money from public.

iii. The Securities Laws Amendment Act, which was notified by thegovernment in August 2014, empowers SEBI to pass orders forattachment of properties, arrest of defaulters and to access calldata records.

iv. A majority of orders against deemed public issues were in WestBengal, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Odisha. The same for CISactivities are in Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, UttarPradesh and West Bengal.

5. 41st G7 summit held in Germany

i. G7 Summit 2015 was held at Schloss Elmau in Bavaria, Germanyfrom 7 June to 8 June 2015. This was the 41st G7 summit and the themefor the summit was Think Ahead. Act Together.

ii. The Summit focused on the global economy as well as on keyissues regarding foreign, security, environment and developmentpolicy. Further, the UN conferences to be held in 2015 as well as thepost-2015 agenda and the issues of sanctions against Russia were alsodiscussed.

The G7 Summit 2015 deliberated on following issues

• Protection of the marine environment andresources and marine governance.
• Antibioticresistance, neglected and poverty-related diseases and Ebola.
•Retail and supply chain standards.
•Empowerment of women by giving vocational training.

6. Government to Give Rs 6,000 Crore Interest-FreeLoans to Sugar Mills

i. The government has approved interest-free loans forcash-strapped sugar mills to help them pay nearly 30 per cent of therecord Rs 21,000 crore they owe to cane farmers, many of whom arestruggling with huge debts as the first country-wide drought in sixyears looms.

ii. Sugar cane prices, meanwhile, have jumped over the years dueto the populist policies of state governments to raise minimumsupport prices for farmers.

iii. Mills in India, the world's biggest sugar producer afterBrazil, have been lobbying the government for months seeking reliefas prices of the sweetener have fallen below the cost of productiondue to ample supplies.

iv. The federal government earlier this year approved a subsidy toexport raw sugar, although that failed to boost shipments amid aglobal glut.

7. Microsoft begins rebranding of Nokia Priority Stores

i. In order to increase its presence in emerging markets likeIndia, Microsoft on Wednesday kick-started rebranding of NokiaPriority Stores as Microsoft Priority Resellers.

ii. India is the first country among Microsoft's global markets toroll out the new look for its retail outlets.

iii. This is perhaps one of the biggest rebranding exercisesundertaken by a mobile manufacturer and we wanted India to lead theway being a priority market for us. For many consumers, the rebrandedshops will be their first experience of Microsoft as a consumerhardware manufacturer.

iv. While existing Nokia stores would transform into MicrosoftPriority Resellers, housing only Microsoft products, themulti-branded retail stores will be rechristened as Microsoft MobileResellers.

8. Shah Rukh Khan acquired CPL T20 team Trinidad &Tobago

i. Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) co-owner Shah Rukh Khan on 9 June2015 acquired Carribean Premier League (CPL) T20 team Trinidad &Tobago (T&T).

ii. Shah Rukh Khan is the first owner of an Indian Premier Leagueteam to own an overseas cricket franchise. Khan's company RedChillies Entertainment Pvt Ltd along with KKR co-owners Juhi Chawlaand her husband Jay Mehta invested in the T&T franchise.

iii. Hollywood stars Mark Wahlberg and Gerard Butler already ownCPL franchises. Wahlberg owns reigning champions Barbados Tridents,led by Kieron Pollard, while Butler owns Jamaica Tallawahs, captainedby Chris Gayle.

iv. The next edition of the tournament is scheduled to run from 20June 2015 to 26 July 2015. KKR, IPL champions in 2012 and 2014, havebeen ranked the most valuable IPL team with a brand value of 86million US dollar (over 500 crore rupees).

 

                                         Current Affairs - 9th June 2015

 

1. R C Tayal appointed as new Director General ofNational Security Guard

i. Senior IPS officer R C Tayal has been appointed as the newchief of the elite counter-terror force National Security Guard(NSG).

ii. The 1980-batch Assam-Meghalaya cadre officer is at presentserving as the Special Director General in paramilitary CRPF and isheading its formation in Jammu and Kashmir.

iii. He is expected to serve as NSG DG till August next year whenhe is scheduled for superannuation.

iv. NSG was raised in 1984 as a federal contingency force with aspecific aim to undertake counter-terror and counter-hijackoperations and it was later tasked to protect high-risk VVIPs.

2. Isro Bags Space Pioneer Award for Mangalyaan MarsOrbiter Mission

i. The country's low-cost Mangalyaan Mars orbiter mission which isin rendezvous with the Red Planet for an extended period has beenpresented with the Space Pioneer award for the year 2015 by the US'National Space Society.

ii. Space Pioneer award for the year 2015 was presented to IndianSpace Research Organisation (Isro) in the Science and Engineeringcategory during the 34th Annual International Space DevelopmentConference held at Toronto in Canada during May 20-24, 2015,Bengaluru-headquartered Isro said on its website.

iii. The Isro spacecraft was launched on its nine-month-longodyssey on a homegrown PSLV rocket from Sriharikota in Andhra Pradeshon November 5, 2013 and had escaped the earth's gravitational fieldon December 1.

iv. The spacecraft is under 'solar conjunction' at Mars, whichmeans the spacecraft, which is orbiting Mars, is behind the sun asviewed from the Earth.

3. Haryana's Jind, Karnal & UP's Muzaffarnagarincluded in NCR

i. Jind and Karnal districts of Haryana and Muzaffarnagar of UttarPradesh were included in National Capital Region on 9 June 2015.

ii. This inclusion was announced by Urban Development minister MVenkaiah Naidu after a meet of National Capital Region Planning Board(NCRPB) meeting in New Delhi.

iii. The meeting was attended by Haryana chief minister ManoharLal Khattar and representatives and government officials of othermember states. Delhi Health Minister Satyender Jain was representingDelhi government.

iv. Earlier on 1 July 2013, Bhiwani and Mahendragarh districts ofHaryana and Bharatpur district of Rajasthan were included in theNational Capital Region.

National Capital Region

* National Capital Region Planning Board (NCRPB)came into being in 1985, with enactment of the National CapitalRegion Planning Board Act, 1985 of Government of India. The aim ofthe concept was to develop a metropolitan area around Delhi, so as todivert increasing pressure of population from the region.

* The concept was essential in order to protectDelhi's infrastructure from excessive pressure and a planneddevelopment of the region.

4. India’s first State-of-the-Art Tier-I Oil SpillResponse Centre inagurated by Gadkari

i. Tackling pollution and oil spills in and around Mumbai will nowbecome much easier, as Union Minister of Road Transport &Highways and Shipping, Nitin Gadkari inaugurated the India’s firstof its kind State-of-the-Art Tier-I Oil Spill Response Centre forMumbai & JNPT Harbour

ii. The OSRC which is equipped with State-of-the-Art equipment inoperational readiness for combating Tier-I oil spill upto 700 tones,ensures adequate protection to the public health and welfare and tothe marine environment.

iii. The facility which is funded by Participating Oil Companies(POCs) and MbPT has taken the responsibility of tendering andmonitoring of Tier -I OSR facility.

iv. The area of operation includes the water limits of the MumbaiPort Trust MbPT, JNPT and ONGC’s facilities at Nhava and Uran.

v. The OSRC will be monitored on 24/7 basis and is also equippedwith skilled and trained personnel and wireless communicationfacilities for immediately responding to any oil spill.

5. Government extends Bank of Baroda interim chiefRanjan Dhawan's term for 3 months

i. The government has further extended the term of Bank ofBaroda's (BoB) interim MD & CEO Ranjan Dhawan for three monthswhile Bank of India will be headed by its Executive Director B PSharma for the same duration.

ii. Dhawan, the senior-most Executive Director of BoB, was giventhis additional charge in February.

iii. The post of a full-time MD & CEO at BoB has been lyingvacant since July 2014 when the then Chairman and Managing Director SS Mundra was appointed RBI Deputy Governor.

iv. Sharma's appointment comes into force from June 8, 2015, andwill be till the appointment of a regular MD & CEO or furtherorders, whichever is earlier, it added.

6. 7th International junior shotgun: Anantjeet winsskeet gold

i. Anantjeet Singh Naruka beat Lari Pesonen of Finland 12-11 inthe skeet match for gold in the 7th International junior shotgun cupthat concluded in Orimattila, Finland

ii. After having qualified at the bottom with a modest score of110, following rounds of 21, 22, 21, 25 and 21, Anantjeet keptgetting better, as he wriggled his way through to the gold medalmatch by winning a three-way tie in the shoot-off to challenge theFinn.

                                      

iii. Compatriot Angadvir Singh Bajwa, who had topped thequalification with 119 following a series of 23, 24, 24, 24 and 24,won the shoot-off for the bronze medal 6-5 against Matteo Chiti ofItaly.

iv. Angadvir and the Italian had shot three each in losing theshoot-off for the gold medal match with Anantjeet who shot 4, afterthe three were tied on 13 in the semifinals.

7. World Ocean Day observed with theme Healthy oceans,Healthy planet

i. 8 June: World Ocean Day

ii. World Ocean Day 2015 was celebrated across the world on 8 June2015 with the theme Healthy oceans, Healthy planet.

iii. To mark the occasion, various events were organised acrossthe globe to spread awareness about the importance of oceans ineconomic, Security and biological spheres and need to protect themfrom vulnerabilities.

iv. For the first time, World Ocean day was introduced in 1992 atRio de Janeiro with a motive of raising awareness of people towardsthe crucial role that sea plays in our lives. The officialdesignation of World Oceans Day is an opportunity to raise globalawareness of the current challenges faced by the internationalcommunity in connection with the oceans.

v. In the year 2008, United Nations General Assembly decided todesignate 8 June as the World Oceans Day from 2009 onwards with itsresolution number 63/111, Paragraph 171.

vi. Oceans are a critical part of our biosphere and are essentialfor food security, health and survival of all lives and areresponsible to power the climate of the world.

vii. The theme for the World Ocean Day 2014 was Together, we havethe Power to Protect the Oceans.

                                    

                                     Current Affairs - 7th & 8th June 2015
 

1. IOC to invest Rs 15,000 crore to raise Panipatrefinery capacity

i. Indian Oil Corp, nation's largest oil firm, plans to investabout Rs 15,000 crore in raising capacity at its Panipat refinery inHaryana by 34% to 20.2 million tonnes (MT) by 2020.

ii. IOC owns and operates eight refineries and has only a fewweeks back added ninth refinery at Paradip in Odisha.

iii. Its eight refineries have a cumulative refining capacity of54.2 MT of crude oil and addition of 15 MT at Paradip refinery hashelped it regain the top refiner slot in the country.

iv. Essar Oil is the only other private refiner having a 20 MT ayear unit at Vadinar in Gujarat.

v. Panipat Refinery was commissioned in 1998 with a capacity ofsix MT per annum. The refining capacity was doubled to 12 MT in 2006and then raised by a further three MT to 15 MT in 2010.

2. K.V. Chowdary is new CVC; Vijai Sharma new CIC

i. Former Chairman of the Central Board of Direct Taxes, K.V.Chowdary, was on Monday, appointed as the new Central VigilanceCommissioner, while the senior-most Information Commissioner, VijaiSharma, is the new Chief InformationCommissioner.                                     

ii. A selection panel headed by the Prime Minister, which includesleader of the principal opposition party, and senior cabinetministers selects the CVC,CIC,vigilance commissioners and informationcommissioners.

iii. The Central Vigilance Commission is headed by a CVC andcomprises two vigilance commissioners and today’s appointmentconstitutes the full Commission.

iv. In the CIC, there are vacancies of four InformationCommissioners. The incumbents are Basant Seth,Yashovardhan Azad,Sharat Sabharwal, Manjula Prasher, M A Khan Yusufi and MadabhushanamSridhar Acharyulu.

3. Flood of fire written by Amitav Ghosh

i. Booker Prize awardee Amitav Ghosh on 7 June 2015 released hisnew novel Flood of fire. With the novel, he has concluded the Ibistrilogy, his fictional recreation of the events leading up to thefirst opium war of 1839-42.

ii. The Ibis trilogy is a work of historical fiction by AmitavGhosh. It comprises Sea of Poppies (2008), River of Smoke (2011), andFlood of Fire (2015). The story is set in the first half of the 19thcentury. It deals with the trade of opium between India and China runby the East India Company and the trafficking of coolies toMauritius.

4. SpiceJet signs deal to sell tickets to waitlistedrailway travellers

i. IRCTC's public relations officer Sandip Dutta explained thatthe Railways have entered the tie-up with SpiceJet and Go Air.

ii. It enables a train traveller whose ticket is wait-listed tocancel the train ticket and instead get on to a flight of eitherairline by paying some incremental fee.

iii. There are no fixed sectors to which the scheme applies, nofixed number of tickets either airline must make available to IRCTCand no fixed rates.

iv. This scheme only applies to tickets booked at least three daysprior to the date of the journey, these train tickets can only becancelled on a specific website and flight tickets are available onlyfor the day of the train journey or a day prior to it.

v. SpiceJet promoter Ajay Singh pointed out that this tie-up ispromising for the airline and he expects "significant"passenger volumes to be generated through this scheme.

5. Tintu Luka finally strikes gold as India finishes3rd at Asian Athletics Championships

i. Tintu Luka bagged her maiden gold in a major internationalevent by winning the women's 800m finals as India finished with fivemedals on the final day of competitions to sign off third in the 21stAsian Athletics Championships here today.

ii. India secured a medal haul of 4 gold, 5 silver and 4 bronze inthe championships to finish third behind China (15, 13, 13) and Qatar(7, 2, 1). Japan (4, 3, 11) and Bahrain (3, 3, 2) finished fourth andfifth respectively.

iii. This was India's best finish after 2007 in Amman, Jordanwhere the country was placed second.

National record holder Luka clocked her season's best timing of2:01.53 to clinch the gold at Wuhan Sports Center.

iv. This was 26-year-old Luka's first individual title in a majorinternational event after breaking into the scene in 2008-09 with alot of promise under the tutelage of the legendary P T Usha.

6. Stanislas Wawrinka won Men's single title of FrenchOpen

i. Serena Williams emerged with a 20th grand slam title thanks toa 6-3, 6-7 (2-7), 6-2 victory over the Czech Lucie Safarova.

ii. The American is now two short of Steffi Graf, the open eraleader, and four off Margaret Court, the all-time leader.

iii. Her win over Safarova was her fifth three-set victory of atournament that was a struggle almost from day one.

iv. Stan Wawrinka played magnificently in a 4-6 6-4 6-3 6-4victory at Roland Garros.

v. Wawrinka, 30, brought an end to Djokovic's 28-match winningstreak as he claimed his second Grand Slam title.

vi. The victory makes him only the second Swiss to win at RolandGarros after Roger Federer, the man he beat in the quarter-finals.

                                        

                                          Current Affairs - 6th June 2015

 

1. South Korea Tests New Ballistic Missile

i. South Korea successfully test fired a ballistic missile capableof hitting targets anywhere in North Korea.

ii. The test demonstrated improved ballistic missile capabilitythat can strike all parts of North Korea swiftly, and with precision,in the event of armed aggression or provocation.

iii. The Hyunmoo-2B is an upgraded version of the Hyunmoo-2A, bothof which were developed by the state-run Agency for DefenseDevelopment (ADD).

2. Prominent scientist Ameenah Gurib-Fakim sworn-in asPresident of Mauritius

i. Prominent scientist Ameenah Gurib-Fakim was on 5 June 2015sworn in as President of Mauritius. With this, Gurib-Fakim became thefirst female president of Mauritius, which gained independence fromBritain in 1968 and replaced Britain's Queen Elizabeth II as its headof state in 1992.

ii. Ameenah, an internationally-renowned scientist and biologist,succeeded Kailash Purryag who stepped down from his post on 29 May2015.

iii. At the time of her appointment as President, Gurib-Fakim wasdirector of Centre for Phytotherapy Research (CEPHYR) in Mauritius,which carries out research on plants for use in cosmetics, nutritionand therapy.

iv. Earlier, the Parliament on 4 June 2015 cleared her name forthe ceremonial position of the Indian island nation after she wasdesignated for the post by Government of Mauritius.

v. An alumni of the universities of Exeter and Surrey in Britain,she also serves as the chairman of organic chemistry at MauritiusUniversity. She has also worked with the World Bank and otherinternational institutions as well.

3. Naidu performs bhoomi pooja for AP capital

i. Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu and his wife Bhuvaneswariperformed bhoomi pooja at around 8.49 a.m. for the new capital —Amaravati — at Mandadam village in Guntur district.

ii. Chief Minister's son and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) workerswelfare committee convener Nara Lokesh; Union Ministers NirmalaSitaraman and Sujana Chowdary were among those present for theceremony.

iii. The ancient city of Amaravathi is being developed separatelyfrom the new capital zone as a heritage town with funds from theCentre.

4. UK Author Ali Smith won 2015 Baileys Women's Prizefor Fiction

i. UK Author Ali Smith on 3 June 2015 won the 2015 Baileys Women'sPrize for Fiction for her novel How to be Both.

ii. Other nominees for the award were English author Laline Paull,Canadian author Rachel Cusk, Pakistani author Kamila Shamsie andWelsh author Sarah Waters.

iii. Ali Smith, a Scottish author, has also won the 2014Goldsmiths Prize and the Novel Award in the 2014 Costa Book Awardsfor the same book.

iv. Earlier, the book was shortlisted for the 2014 Man BookerPrize and the 2015 Folio Prize.

5. India, Bangladesh make history with land swap

i. India and Bangladesh on Saturday sealed a historic agreementthat will settle a 41-year-old land boundary dispute through exchangeof territories, removing a major irritant in bilateral ties.

ii. The two sides exchanged documents regarding the Land BoundaryAgreement (LBA) that was passed unanimously by the Parliament lastmonth in the presence of Mr. Modi and his Bangladeshi counterpartSheikh Hasina.

iii. The exchange of documents paves way for theoperationalisation of the 1974 India-Bangladesh LBA that provides forexchange of 161 enclaves between the two countries. A total 111border enclaves will be transferred to Bangladesh in exchange for 51that will become part of India.

iv. Under the agreement, India will have an advantage of 500 acresand 10,000 acres will go to Bangladesh.

6. Union Ministry of Water Resources launchednationwide Jal Kranti Abhiyan from Jaipur

i. Union Minister of Water Resources, River Development and GangaRejunivetion Uma Bharti on 5 June 2015 launched nationwide Jal KrantiAbhiyan (campaign) from Jaipur, Rajasthan.

ii. The aim is to consolidate water conservation and management inthe country through a holistic and integrated approach involving allstakeholders, making it a mass movement.

Objective of the campaign

• To strengthen grass root involvement of allstake holders including Panchyati raj institutions and local bodiesin the water security and development schemes like participatoryIrrigation Management (PIM).
• To encourage theadoption of traditional knowledge in water resource conservation andits management
• To utilize sector-levelexpertise from different levels in government, NGOs, citizen, etc
•Enhancing livelihood security through water security inrural areas

7. Dravid for India Under-19 coach

i. BCCI has announced Rahul Dravid as the coach of India A teamand Indian U 19 cricket team.

ii. Working with the under-19 and 'A' teams might be the perfectsolution as Dravid can make a tangible contribution without placingtoo much demand on his time.

iii. Dravid had a short stint as mentor of the Indian team beforethe series in England last year and several players spoke highly oftheir interactions with the former India captain.

                                         
                                      Current Affairs - 5th June 2015

 

1. 5 June: World Environment Day observed globally

i. World Environment Day (WED) was observed globally on 5 June2015 with theme Seven Billion Dreams. One Planet. Consumewith Care.

ii. The host country for the WED 2015 is Italy and thecelebrations will be organized by Expo Milano 2015 that will run from1 May to 31 October 2015 and will see the participation of 140 pluscountries.

iii. The day is observed to raise global awareness to takepositive environmental action to protect nature and the planet Earth.It is run by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

2. Delhi Metro got its first driver-less train

i. Delhi Metro on 4 June 2015 received its first driver-less trainfrom Korea-based manufacturer. The train is equipped with severaladvanced features and will be operational on sections of Phase-III ofthe network, set to be operational by December 2016.

Features of these trains

• Manufactured at Changwan in South Korea, thenew train has undergone significant technological as well aseco-friendly upgrades. Many additional features have been added toincrease passenger comfort.
• The train will bemore energy efficient because of improved design features such asbetter regeneration of energy during braking, energy efficient subsystems like LED lighting and air conditioning systems.
•The train is are designed for a maximum speed of 95 kmph andoperational speed of 85 kmph
• Due to theabsence of cabin for the operator, these train will be able toaccommodate 2280 passengers, which is 240 more than the regularsix-coach Metro train

3. Prince Harry knighted

i. Prince Harry was today knighted by his grandmother the Queen asa sign of her personal esteem.

ii. The fifth in line to the throne was made a Knight Commander ofthe Royal Victorian Order in a private ceremony at Buckingham Palace.

                                             

iii. The Order was founded in April 1896 by Queen Victoria as away of rewarding personal service to her, on her own initiativerather than by ministerial recommendation and remains entirely withinthe Sovereign's personal gift.

4. Mahindra business city to be carbon-positive

i.  A 'green' integrated business city pioneered by theMahindra Group has drawn a road map of becoming climate positive in10 years, a distinction which places India on the world map.

ii. Mahindra World City Jaipur (MWCJ), spread across 3,000 acreson the Delhi-Mumbai corridor, has become the first project in Asia —and sixth in the world — to commit to a carbon-positive road map aspart of the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group.

iii. projected to reduce 8 lakh tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2)emissions in about 10 years to become climate-neutral.

5. Essel, Rajasthan government ink Rs 4k crore pact forsolar parks

i. Essel Group formed a 50:50 joint venture (JV) with theRajasthan government to set up solar parks in the state.

ii. The solar parks will be set up in Bikaner and Jaisalmerregions with an investment of Rs 4,000 crore.

iii. Solar Park Project in Rajasthan will be India's turnkeyproject in the renewable energy space which will aid the clean energyinitiatives of the Government of Rajasthan.

6. Infosys Limited appoints Seshasayee as Chairman

i. Infosys Limited announced that the Company’s Board haveapproved the appointment of R. Seshasayee as Non-Executive Chairmanof the Board with immediate effect.

ii. K.V. Kamath will be stepping down from his position asChairman of the Board and as an Independent Director of the Company,consequent to his nomination as President of the BRICS NewDevelopment Bank.

iii. Mr. Seshasayee has been an Independent Director on theCompany’s Board since January 2011 and is the chairperson of theAudit Committee. Mr. Seshasayee’s other board positions includeNon-Executive Vice Chairman of Ashok Leyland Ltd. and Chairman ofIndusInd Bank Ltd.

7. Snapdeal-Tata Housing sells house worth Rs. 1.1 cr

i. E-commerce firm Snapdeal and Tata Housing, which have partneredto sell homes online, have announced their largest transaction worthRs. 1.1 crore hours after commencing the sale of premium and luxuryapartments.

ii. Snapdeal is also exploring alliances for providing optionssuch as site visit facilities and documentation services.

iii. Snapdeal real estate category has grown 400 per cent in thelast six months and currently comprise a portfolio of residentialprojects from developers across India including Tata Value Homes,Tata Housing, DLF, Sobha Developers, Godrej Properties, MantriDevelopers, and Purvankara.

                                         
                                       Current Affairs - 4th June 2015

 

1. Northern Railway rolled out India’s first railcoach lit by solar panels

i. The Delhi division of the Northern Railway on 3 June 2015rolled out a non-AC coach lit by solar panels mounted on its roof.

ii. The eco-friendly solar panels will save fossil fuel as itneeds reduced external charging of battery, thus reducing carbon footprint. The panels also require less maintenance in comparison toexisting equipments.

iii. This is the first time in the history of Indian Railways,that a solar photovoltaic system has been used for power requirementsof light and fan in a broad gauge coach.

iv. The coach, on an experimental basis, was attached to a highspeed Self Propelled-Accident Relief Unit (SPART) that travelled fromDelhi Cantonment to New Delhi railway station.

2. Syed Asif Ibrahim appointed as PM’s Special Envoyon Countering Terrorism and Extremism

i. Syed Asif Ibrahim was on 3 June 2015 appointed as the PrimeMinister’s Special Envoy on Countering Terrorism and Extremism. Heis a former Director of Intelligence Bureau (DIB).

ii. In this new capacity, he will liaise with governments in WestAsia, Afghanistan, Pakistan and South East Asia, among others, insetting up channels for the exchange of intelligence and informationon terror groups.

iii. The appointment took place in the back drop of growingconcern over probable poaching of some Indian youth by Islamic Stateof Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) and other militant groups operating inSyria and Iraq.

iv. He will report to National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Dovaland work out of the National Security Council (NSC) Secretariat inNew Delhi.

v. Syed Asif Ibrahim was a 1977 batch Indian Police Service (IPS)officer of Madhya Pradesh cadre and retired in December 2014.

vi. He held the position of DIB from 1 January 2013 to 31 December2014.

3. Jayalalithaa announces aid for Cauvery delta farmers

i. Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa on Thursday announceda financial aid of Rs 41 crore for farmers in the Cauvery deltaregion to improve the kuruvai cultivation (short-term cultivation).

ii. The 'kuruvai package' announced by the government includesfinancial assistance to farmers and free supply of micro nutrients.

iii.  Farm machines will be leased out to farmers free ofcost. Besides, three phase power would be provided for 12 hours perday for irrigation.

iv. The ground water level had gone up considerably due to goodrain. As such, to encourage kuruvai cultivation, a package ofassistance to the tune of Rs 40.97 crore will be extended to thefarmers.

4. India, Belarus agree on road map for stronger ties

i. India and Belarus decided to work together on defence andsecurity issues as President Pranab Mukherjee met his Belarusiancounterpart and agreed on a 17-point road map aimed at strengtheningmutual trust and confidence.

ii.  The President discussed a host of issues, includingincreasing trade ties, besides boosting co-operation in mining,education and heavy machinery with Mr. Lukashenko.

iii. Under the agreement, the two countries will enhancecoordination in science and technology, energy sector, metals andmining, potash fertilizers, give boost to raw material in textilesector, extend cooperation by Belarus in modernisation of publicelectric transport system in India, agriculture and agro procession.

5. Suresh Kalmadi conferred with Asian AthleticsAssociation President’s award

i. Suresh Kalmadi on 2 June 2015 was conferred with the AsianAthletics Association (AAA) President’s award. He was awarded forhis contribution towards the development of athletics in Asiancontinent.

ii. Adille Sumariwala, the President of Athletics Federation ofIndia received the award on behalf of Kalmadi at the function held inWuhan, China ahead of the start of Asian Athletics Championships.

iii. He is credited with the introduction of top events like AsianGrand Prix series, Asian Indoor Championships and Asian All Star Meetand others during his tenure as the president of AAA for 13 yearsfrom 2000 to 2013. He was defeated by Dahlan Al-Hamad of Qatar in thepresidential election of the AAA held in 2013 at Pune.

iv. Earlier in March 2015, he was named as the Life President ofAAA for his contribution for Asian athletics. The decision was takenduring the council meet of AAA in Jakarta, Indonesia.

v. He has served as the President of Indian Olympic Associationfrom 1996 to 2012.

6. De Villiers crowned South African cricketer of theyear

i. AB de Villiers won as many as five awards, including the SouthAfrican Cricketer of the Year for a second consecutive time at a galafunction, hosted by Cricket South Africa (CSA) in Johannesburg.

                                      

ii. The 27-year-old batsman was named the ODI Cricketer of theYear, Cricketers’ Cricketer of the Year, SA Fan’s Cricketer ofthe Year and also got the ‘So Good Award’ for scoring the fastestcentury in the history of ODI cricket against the West Indies inDecember 2014.

iii. Morne van Wyk won the T20 Cricketer of the Year, Dale Steynreceived the Delivery of the Year and Rilee Rossouw was named the SANewcomer of the Year.

7. India jumps six places in FIFA rankings

i. India has jumped six places to 141st position in the latestrankings released by world football’s governing body FIFA.

ii. India was previously placed 147th in the rankings list. Iran(41) is the top-ranked Asian team in the list, followed by Japan (52)and South Korea (58).

iii. World Champions Germany continued to head the rankings.Belgium jumped to second place, a place above World Cup runners-upArgentina.

iv. Five-time world champions Brazil are fifth, a spot belowColombia. Brazil is followed by the Netherlands, Portugal (seventh),Uruguay (eighth), and France (ninth).

 

                                           Current Affairs - 3rd June2015

 

1. Jaipur Metro starts operations

i. Jaipur Metro, touted as one of the fastest built metro systemsin the country, was thrown open to public today.

ii. Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje flagged off the inaugural trainon 9.6 km long route from Mansarovar to Chandpole.

iii. Jaipur Metro commenced its regular commercial operations fromall its 9 stations-- Mansarovar, New Aatish Market, Vivek Vihar,Shyam Nagar, Ram Nagar, Civil Lines, Railway Station, Sindhi Camp andChandpole.

iv. To encourage people to travel in the metro, upto 15 per centdiscount has been offered on smart cards, which can be rechargedusing Jaipur Metro website or Ticket Vending Machines installed atall stations.

2. US President Barack Obama signed USA FREEDOM Act2015 into law

i. US President Barack Obama on 2 June 2015 signed the USA FREEDOMAct 2015 in law. The USA FREEDOM stands for Uniting and StrengtheningAmerica by Fulfilling Rights and Ensuring Effective Discipline OverMonitoring Act of 2015.

ii. With this, the National Security Agency (NSA) lost itsauthority to collect the phone records of millions of Americans.

iii. The Act was approved by the Senate on 1 June 2015 by 67-32votes and was passed by the House of Representatives on 13 May 2015.The Act will remain in effect until 15 December 2019.

3. Snowden awarded freedom of expression prize inNorway

i. Former security contractor Edward Snowden won a Norwegian prizefor freedom of expression.

ii. The Norwegian Academy of Literature and Freedom of Expressionsaid the 31-year old fugitive had won the Bjornson Prize named aftera Norwegian Nobel literature laureate "for his work protectingprivacy and for shining a critical light on US surveillance of itscitizens and others."

iii. The academy requested assurances from the Norwegiangovernment that Snowden would not be extradited to the US if hetravelled to Norway to receive the 100,000 kroner ($12,700, 11,500euros) prize money.

iv. Snowden was awarded Sweden's Right Livelihood Award in 2014but chose to accept it by video link rather than leaving his exile inRussia.

4. Govt notifies FDI policy relaxations for NRIs

i. Non-repatriable investments by NRIs, OCIs and PIOs will betreated as domestic investments and will not be subject to foreigndirect investment caps.

ii.  It has been decided to amend the definition of NRIs ascontained in the FDI policy and also to provide that for the purposesof FDI policy, investment by NRIs under Schedule 4 of FEMAregulations will be deemed to be domestic investment at par with theinvestment made by residents.

iii. The government has also notified increase in FIPB’s powerto recommend foreign investment proposals of up to Rs 3,000 crorefrom the earlier Rs 2,000 crore.

5. Sepp Blatter resigned as FIFA president amidcorruption scandal

i. Outgoing Fifa president Sepp Blatter is now part of thecorruption probe by US prosecutors.

ii. Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro nominated Diego Maradonafor the job.

iii. Jordanian Prince Ali bin al Hussein will stand in newelections for the presidency of world football's governing body.

iv. FIFPro welcomes the decision of FIFA president Sepp Blatter toresign as this creates an overdue and unique opportunity tofundamentally reform the governance of football.

6. US Defence Secretary Ashton B. Carter arrives inIndia

i. After delivering the keynote address at the crucial Shangri Ladialogue in Singapore, US Secretary of Defence Ashton Carter arrivedin India.

ii. he will hold meetings with PM Narendra Modi, Defence MinisterManohar Parrikar, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj andNational Security Advisor Ajit Doval. During his visit.

                                        

iii. The two countries will be signing the Defence FrameworkAgreement (DFA) that will define the US-India defence cooperationover the next decade.

iv. During Carter’s ongoing visit, the two sides will assess theprogress made in these pathfinder projects— next generation RavenMinis UAVs, roll-on roll-off kits for C-130s, mobile electric hybridpower source and Uniform Integrated Protection Ensemble Increment.

 

                                         Current Affairs - 2nd June 2015

 

1. Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa sworn-in as Arunachal PradeshGovernor

i. Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa was sworn-in as the 19th Governor ofArunachal Pradesh.

ii. President Pranab Mukherjee had appointed him as Governor onMay 12, 2015 after then Governor Lt General (Retired) Nirbhay Sharmawas transferred to Mizoram.

iii. Mr. Rajkhowa is a retired Indian Administrative Service (IAS)officer from 1968 batch. He is the former Chief Secretary of Assamand had retired from service in 2004.

iv. Mr. Rajkhowa has authored a book, Central Vigilance Mechanismwith special reference to P.S.E’s, and also had contributed bywriting number of articles to leading newspapers.

2. BIS App launched

i. Union Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswanlaunched a BIS App to register complaints against sub-standardquality of ISI marked products and Hallmark jewellery.

ii. Operation of godowns under Food Corporation of India (FCI) hasbeen made online to increase transparency in the functioning of thecorporation.

iii. Mr Paswan said government has decided to continue food grainallocation for other welfare schemes for the poor. Saying that foodgrains older than a year and a half are not kept in the godowns.

3. Bangladesh Liberation War award for Vajpayee

i. Bangladesh is set to honour former Prime Minister Atal BehariVajpayee for his outstanding support for the country’s independencefrom Pakistan in 1971 when he was a Lok Sabha member.

ii. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina also approved a proposal tohonour the families of the members of Indian armed forces forsacrificing their lives for the cause of Bangladesh’s independence.

iii. Bangladesh will hand over Vajpayee’s “Friends ofBangladesh Liberation War Award” to Prime Minister Narendra Modiduring his upcoming visit to the country from June 6.

4. RBI lowers repo rate to 7.25 per cent

i. The Reserve Bank of India in its second bi-monthly policyannounced on has reduced the policy repo rate under the liquidityadjustment facility (LAF) by 25 basis points from 7.5 per cent to7.25 per cent with immediate effect.

ii. It has decided to keep the cash reserve ratio (CRR) ofscheduled banks unchanged at 4.0 per cent of net demand and timeliabilities (NDTL).

iii. It has decided to continue to provide liquidity underovernight repos at 0.25 per cent of bankwise NDTL at the LAF reporate and liquidity under 14-day term repos as well as longer-termrepos of up to 0.75 per cent of NDTL of the banking system throughauctions and continue with overnight/term variable rate repos andreverse repos to smooth liquidity.

iv.  the reverse repo rate under the LAF stands adjusted to6.25 per cent, and the marginal standing facility (MSF) rate and thebank rate to 8.25 per cent.

5. 92-year-old Harriette Thompson became oldest womanto complete a marathon

i. Harriette Thompson, a 92 year 65 days old cancer survivor, on31 May 2015 became the oldest woman to finish a marathon.

ii. She achieved this fete at San Diego’s Rock 'n' Roll Marathonof 26.2 miles (42.2 kilometers) by completing the race in 7 hours, 24minutes, 36 seconds. This was her 16th Rock 'n' Roll Marathon and byfar, the hardest.

iii. With this, Harriette Thompson of Charlotte, North Carolinagot her name inscribed into the record books. The previous recordholder was Gladys Burrill. She made the record at the age of 92 yearsand 19 days at the 2010 Honolulu Marathon.

iv. According to Runner's World, Thompson has been running the SanDiego marathon for 16 years and has raised more than 100000 dollarfor cancer research in that time.

6. Ravi Shastri to continue as Indian team director

i. Former captain Ravi Shastri was on Tuesday retained as directorof the Indian cricket team for the tour of Bangladesh starting June10.

ii. Shastri, who served as team director during the tour ofAustralia and the subsequent World Cup earlier this year, is astop-gap arrangement for the short trip.

iii. Mr. B. Arun, assistant coach (Bowling) and Mr. R. Sridhar,assistant coach (Fielding), will assist Mr. Shastri during the tour.

7. Ericsson partners Sterlite for smart cityinitiatives in India

i. Under the agreement, Ericsson will collaborate with Sterlite todesign a roadmap and deploy solutions.

ii. The alliance will design, deploy, integrate and managesolutions in areas like communications, public safety, smart gridsolutions and intelligent transport.

iii. Sterlite is working closely with the Government to drivesmart sustainable city initiatives and supports Digital Indiaprogramme.

iv. Solutions covered in the agreement include communications(Wi-Fi networks and fibre deployment), public safety (videosituational awareness solutions and emergency response), intelligenttransport (traffic management and fleet management) and smart gridsolutions (smart grid communications and smart metering).

8. President gave assent to 119th ConstitutionalAmendment Bill on LBA between India and Bangladesh

i. President of India Pranab Mukherjee on 28 May 2015 gave hisassent to the Constitution (119th Amendment) Bill, 2013 that relatedto the Land Boundary Agreement (LBA) between India and Bangladesh.

ii. Earlier, the bill was unanimously passed by both the houses ofthe Parliament in May 2015.

iii. It is the 100th amendment to the Indian Constitution andamends its first schedule.

iv. The Constitution (100th Amendment ) Act, 2015, as it is callednow, is intended to operationalise the May 1974 LBA that pertains toexchange of certain enclaves of land between both the countries.

                                      
                                        
Current Affairs - 1st June 2015

 

1. K.Sivan-new VSSC chief

i. K. Sivan, Distinguished Scientist, ISRO, assumed office as the12th Director of the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC).

ii. He takes over from M.S. Dathan who has retired from service.

iii. Dr. Sivan joined ISRO in 1982 in the PSLV project and hascontributed towards mission planning, design, integration, andanalysis.

iv. He also spearheaded the Reusable Launch Vehicle TechnologyDemonstrator (RLV-TD) project. In April 2011, Dr. Sivan joined theGSLV project as director.

v. His leadership led to the successful flight of GSLV with anindigenous cryogenic stage.

2. China unveiled world's first facial recognition ATMmachine

i. China on 30 May 2015 unveiled the world's first facialrecognition ATM which will not allow users to withdraw cash unlesstheir face matches their IDs. The ATM machine was created by TsinghuaUniversity and Hangzhou-based technology company Tzekwan.

Highlights of the ATM Machine

• The machine is a combination of high speedban-knote handling, improved counterfeit-bill recognition and facerecognition.
• It has a camera installed in itthat captures the facial features of the user and then compares itwith a database of identification photos.
• Itlooks at the biological features and can identify people even iftheir facial features have changed.
• It willhelp in preventing thieves from accessing other people's accounts asthe ATM records the serial number of every bank note deposited.
•The machine is 20 percent more accurate at verifying theauthenticity of multiple currencies compared with the average ATMused globally.

3. Muhammadu Buhari assumed the office of President ofNigeria

i. Muhammadu Buhari on 29 May 2015 assumed the office of Presidentof Nigeria. He became the 5th President of the country by defeatingthe incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan in the March 2015 generalelection.

ii. It is the first time in Nigeria's history that an incumbentPresident was defeated in an election by the opposition.

iii. He is a retired Nigerian Army Major General and was Head ofState of Nigeria from 31 December 1983 to 27 August 1985, aftertaking power in a military coup d'état.

iv. Earlier, he unsuccessfully ran for the office of President inthe 2003, 2007 and 2011 elections. In December 2014, he emerged asthe presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC)that has also won the majority of seats in the Senate and the Houseof Representatives in the elections held in March 2015.

4. President's visit to Sweden

i. President Pranab Mukherjee arrived in Sweden on the first legof his five-day state visit to Sweden and Belarus, the first ever byany Indian head of State, during which a number of key agreements onsustainable development, scientific research are likely to be signed.

                                         

ii. During his three-day State visit in Sweden, the President willmeet Prime Minister Stefan Lofven, the Speaker of the SwedishParliament, and the Leader of Opposition, Anna Kinberg Batra besidesnumber of meetings with the King and the Queen.

iii. The visit will focus on innovation, sustainable development,urban development and scientific research with both countriesexploring ways to enhance mutual exchange in the areas of trade andscience.

5. Service tax increased to 14%

i. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in his Budget had proposed toraise service tax from 12.36 percent (including education cess) to 14percent.

ii. Some of the key services that will attract higher tax andhence become costlier are: railways, airlines, banking, insurance,advertising, architecture, construction, credit cards, eventmanagement and tour operators.

iii. Jaitley had proposed to raise the service tax rate to 14percent to facilitate a smooth transition to the Goods and ServicesTax (GST) regime, which the government wants to roll out from April2016.

6. Shooter Gurpreet Singh qualifies for Rio 2016

i. Former Commonwealth Games gold medallist Gurpreet Singh becameIndia's fifth shooter to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympic Gamesfinishing fourth in the 10m Air Pistol category at the ISSF World CupRifle/Pistol event being held in Munich.

ii. The 28-year-old shot a total of 154.8 points to finish fourthin the Final.

iii. Joao Costa of Portugal who shot a total of 201.4 in the eventwon the gold medal.

iv. The other Indians to have earned India the earlier four quotaplaces are Jitu Rai, Olympic bronze medallist Gagan Narang, ApurviChandela and India's only individual Olympic gold medallist AbhinavBindra.

7. Tendulkar, Ganguly, Laxman inducted in BCCI’sCricket Advisory Committee

i. Former greats Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, and VVS Laxmanon Monday joined the BCCI in a newly-constituted advisory panel toguide the board in all matters related to the game.

ii. It has been learnt that Thakur and president Jagmohan Dalmiyawill consult with the panel on all major cricketing decisions.

                                        

iii. Board wants batsmen to specifically speak to Tendulkar beforeany tough international assignment.

iv. Ganguly might well be consulted for preparing a blueprint forsuccess of the team overseas with Laxman working on thebench-strength and the new talent coming in through the system.

8. Bhanot elected Asian Athletics Associationvice-President

i. Scam-tainted former IOA Secretary General Lalit Bhanot waselected vice-President of the Asian Athletics Association (AAA) inpolls held in Wuhan, China.

ii. Recommended by the Athletics Federation of India, Mr. Bhanotfought through a 14-strong challenge in the elections to be picked asone of the five vice-Presidents during the AAA council on the eve ofthe Asian Championships in Wuhan.

iii. Tainted in the corruption scandal that engulfed the 2010Commonwealth Games, Mr. Bhanot served as secretary of AFI for morethan a decade and was the Secretary General of the IOA when it serveda 14-month suspension by theIOC.                                                                                                  


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