Download : 24th January, 2017 – Current Affairs PDF
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National Current Affairs
Centre Approves Ordinance to Allow Jallikattu in Tamil Nadu
- A draft ordinance has been sent to the centre seeking an amendment to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960and removal of “bull” from the list of “performing” animals.
- This will ensure that provisions of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act will not apply to the bull.
AYUSH, ASCI sign MoU to co-regulate advertisements in AYUSH sector
- Ministry of AYUSHhas signed a Memorandum of Understanding(MoU) with the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) to curtail malpractices in the advertisement of AYUSH drugs
- According to the MoU, ASCI will report to the Ministry of AYUSH, all advertisements in potential violation of the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954 and Rules under as well as non-compliance of ASCI’s CCC recommendations for the Ministry of AYUSH to take further action.
First Strategic Dialogue Between India UAE
- India and UAEheld the first meeting of their strategic dialogue in an attempt to finalize the cooperation agreement.
- It was the first meeting since the decision taken by the two countries to elevate their relations to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnershipduring the exchange of the visits at the highest level between India and United Arab Emirates (UAE) in August 2015 and February 2016
- The main area of discussion during the meeting included cooperation in the areas of trade and investments, expanding the bilateral cooperation to new areas under the strategic partnership, energy security and renewable energy, defence and security, electronics and information technology and space.
Bihar Government Launches ‘Nasha Mukt’ State Campaign
- Bihar launched a ‘Nasha Mukt’ (Addiction-Free) State Campaign with the formation of world’s largest human chain across the state.
- The move aims towards making the state free from intoxicating substance and tobacco products.
- Over two crore people participated in human chain including teachers and students of schools and colleges. The human chain that lasted for 45 minutesand was 11,292 km in length covering all panchyats and blocks of the state.
- Earlier, Bangladeshmade the record of creating 1050 km of human chain for similar act.
India Innovation Index will Measure Innovation Performance of Indian States
- The index will measure and rank the innovation performanceof all Indian states and hence drive India towards an innovation-driven economy.
- The Index would encourage the states to compete with each other and in turn lead to better policies for inclusive growth. The first ranking is expected to be released at the India Economic Summit in New Delhi on October 2017.
- The index will be based on key pillars of innovation such as strength of institutions, capacity of human capital and research, supporting infrastructure and the level of business sophistication among others and sub-indices that together will assist in framing policies to promote inclusive growth.
Govt. of Jharkhand Signs Joint Venture Agreement with the Ministry of Railways
- Indian Railwayssigned a joint venture agreement with the state government of Jharkhand for the development of railway infrastructure in the State.
- Aim:The JV agreement would enable to provide active representation to States in the Planning and Implementation of Railway Infrastructure Projects, take up railway project on state’s priority basis and generate more financial resources through participation of State & other stakeholders in the project specific subsidiaries.
- It is the 9th State to form a Joint Venture Company with the Ministry of Railways. Earlier Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Odisha, Haryana, Chhattisgarh and Gujarat have already signed JV agreement with Ministry of Railways.
Indian Railways Set to Raise $5 billion Railway Development Fund
- Indian Railwayshas decided to set up a $5 billion Railways of India Development Fund (RIDF) so as to support commercially viable projects in railway sector in India.
- The World Bankwould fund 80% RIDF while 20% fund would be raised by the Indian railways itself and managed independently by a non-government entity.
- The national transporter hopes to set up this fund by the end of the first quarter of the 2018.
Business & Economy
Union Cabinet approves Excluding States /Union Territories from Investments of National Small Savings Fund
- Union cabinet has approved exclusion of States/Union-Territories (with Legislature) except Arunachal Pradesh, Delhi, Kerala and Madhya Pradeshfrom National Small Savings Fund (NSSF) investments effective from April 1, 2016.
- It also approved to provide a one-time loan of 45,000 crore to Food Corporation of India (FCI) from NSSF to meet its food subsidy requirements.
- After the states are excluded from NSSF investments the availability of the investible funds of NSSFwith the Government will increase. This will ultimately reduce Government’s market borrowing.
- The reduction of FCI’s borrowing cost will lead to an increase in Government’ssavings on the Food Subsidy Bill.
Kerala Gramin Bank to propagate financial literacy among school children
- Kerala Gramin Bankhas launched a novel program called FI@School to propagate financial literacy among school children
- Every branch of the bank has to tie up with nearest school to organize various programs to literate school students.
GST Decides Tax Evasion Upto rs. 2 Cr Bailable Offence
- Centre and State Government has in a meeting decided to reduce some of the penal provisions of the GST regimein order to make it less burdensome.
- The GST Council has decided that tax evasion of upto than 2 crorewould be bailable offense to ensure that the trader gets immediate bail while the non-bailable offenses would be limited to ‘forgery and non- deposit of collected taxes with the exchequer within the stipulated time frame.
- Currently, tax evasion up to Rs 1 crore used to be bailable offense.
- Besides, under IPC 1860, forgery and cheating are non-bailable offense and bail can only be granted by the Court.
- In case of service taxthere is a provision of arrest for non-deposit of the tax beyond Rs 50 lakh with the government.
Cooperative Banks Barred From Accepting Deposits under PMGKDS
- Cooperative bankshave been barred by the Government from accepting deposits under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Deposit Scheme (PMGKDS)to stop any misuse of the deposited amount.
- The decision comes after the income tax department revealed that a large number of cooperative banks were manipulating and launderingundisclosed money after the government scrapped the old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 banknotes
- Now such deposits would be accepted by any banking company other than Co-operative Banks registered under Banking Regulation Act, 1949.
- The authorized banks will have to electronically furnish the details of deposit to the Revenue Department on the next working day for the information verification of the deposit before accepting the declaration under the PMGKY.
Flipkart Ranked Top E-Commerce Firm in Indian E-tailing Leadership Index
- Electronic commerce company Flipkarthas been ranked at the top position in the nationwide consumer study titled ‘The Indian E-tailing Leadership Index’ conducted by research firm Red Seer Consulting.
- This is the fourth consecutive yearthat Filpkart has retained its position as the most trusted e-commerce brand.
- The E-tailing Leadership Index (ELI) conducts a survey to assess how consumers in India view and interact with e-tailing brands.
FreeCharge Launches Mutual Funds Platform in Partnership with Reliance
- Digital Payment Platform, FreeCharge has launched a Mutual Funds investment facility on its platform in partnership with Reliance Mutual Fund
- Under the facility users can invest in a “Money Market Mutual Fund” that seeks to provide higher returns than those available on savings bank accounts.
- Investment in FreeCharge’s Mutual Fund would entirely be The customer simply needs to register with his PAN or Adhaar card number.
Microsoft acquires Simplygon to accelerate 3D innovation
- American multinational technology company Microsofthas acquired Sweden-based company Simplygon to accelerate innovation in enabling 3D for everyone.
- Simplygon is a leader in 3D game optimization, dedicated to helping creators and users of 3D data across industries optimize content pipelines and streamline workflows.
People in News
AIFF president Praful Patel becomes a member of FIFA finance committee
- All India Football Federation (AIFF) President Praful Patel has been appointed a member of world governing body FIFA’s finance committee which will work from 2017 to 2021
- Patel was appointed as senior vice-president of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) in December, 2016.
Himachali film ‘Saanjh’ awarded at US film festival
- Himachal dialect film “Saanjh” has won the best feature film award at international Borrego Springs Film Festival held in California, US.
- Saanjh is the first Himachali film has gets international recognition in 100 years of the Indian cinema.
- The film focuses on an unforgettable Saanjh (evening) in which the characters are caught between light and darkness
Science & Technology
INS Vikramaditya Becomes India’s First Warship to Have ATM Onboard
- INS Vikramaditya,India’s biggest aircraft carrier ship has become the country’s first warship to have an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) onboard the vessel. It will be operated through satellite link.
- The ship represents 19.82 acres of sovereign Indian territory and projects, promotes and protects the country’s maritime interests at sea.
Scientists Explores Wolf 1061c To Be Next Habitable Planet After Earth
- Scientists have discovered an exoplanet named Wolf 1061 located around 14 light years away from Earth that could be the habitable planet in the future after Earth.
- In an effort to find out if life thrives in any planet other than our Earth, the scientists carried out a research with focus on searching “habitable zones” regions where water could exist in a liquid state on the surface of the planet in the presence of sufficient atmospheric pressure.
- One of the three planets in the Wolf 1061 system named Wolf 1061c, a rocky planet is entirely within the habitable zone, the area where liquid water could exist on the surface of the celestial body.
- It was also noticed that Wolf 1061c’s orbit changes at a much faster rate, leading to a very chaotic climate.
Scientists Develop Robotic Sleeve to Pump Blood in Weak Heart
- Researchers from Harvard University and Boston Children’s Hospital have developed a customizable soft robotic sleeve to encase a diseased heart and help it beat.
- The newly developed device is designed to help people who are experiencing heart failure.
- The soft, cup-shaped robotic device fits around the heart like a sleeve to give it gentle squeezes to help pump blood in patients with weakened hearts.
- However the device will never come in contact with the blood thus reducing the number of complications it might pose. It is made of elastic silicone that mimics the flexibility of natural heart muscle.
Sports Current Affairs
Indian Footballer Jayesh Raimalani Joins Spanish Football Team
- Indian footballer Jayesh Raimalani has signed a deal through Indo-Spanish football venture called Spaindia to join the Spanish Football Team, Club Esportiu JUPITER (CE JUPITER) based in Barcelona.
- The Rajasthan born footballer will join the Club’s U-19 team that plays in the National League.
- Jayesh will also play in its B Team that currently plays the Second Division of U-19 league system in Spain.
- Barcelona based venture aims to provide opportunities for Indian footballers to have a taste of European football.
- CE Jupiter is a club founded in 1909 in Barcelona and has a glorious history in Catalonian Leagues and Lower National Leagues