24th March 2017 – Current Affairs Today

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National Current Affairs

Cabinet Approvals on March 22, 2017

  • Approval for development of 403 kms of National Highways in Meghalaya and Mizoram and also approved the Deepening and Widening of Mumbai Harbour Channel and JN Port Channel (Phase-II) project with fresh estimates.
  • Government has decided to amend the Constitution for setting up the National Commission for Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (NSEBC) as a constitutional body for socially and economically backward classes.
  • The Union Cabinet approved the following proposals with regards to NABARD Act, 1981 during the cabinet meeting.
  • The cabinet approved the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)signed between the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-ln) under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and the US Homeland Security Department on cooperation in the field of Cyber Security.
  • The government gave its approval to amend the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009.
  • Approved the following proposals with regard to the Fund of Funds of Start-ups (FFS) which was established in June 2016 with a corpus of  10000 crores.

Ninth Gurkhas Observes its 200 years of Raising in Secunderabad

  • The 9 Gorkha Rifles is a Gorkha regiment of the Indian Army comprising of soldiers of Nepalese originand was initially formed in 1817 by the British government.
  • The first battalion of the Ninth Gorkhas was raised by the British government in 1817 as the ‘Fatehgarh Levy’.
  • Ninth Gorkha Rifles has a unique honour that all its battalions have been awarded the Chief of Army Staff’s Citation for exceptional performance in the line of duty.
  • The Regiment has been awarded three Victoria Crossesfive Mahavir Chakras and seventeen Vir Chakras in the two centuries of its existence.
  • Some of the Regiments battle honours are Afghanistan, France and Flanders, Mesopotamia, North Africa, Chindits, Burma, Phillora, Kumarkhalli, Dera Baba Nanak and Jammu & Kashmir.

International Current Affairs

India Ranks 87 in Energy Architecture Performance Index 2017

  • India has been placed at 87th position among 127 countries in the global Energy Architecture Performance Index (EAPI) 2017 by World Economic Forum

Top 5 Countries in EAPI 2017

Rank Country
1 Switzerland
2 Norway
3 Sweden
4 Denmark
5 France

 

  • The Global Energy Architecture Performance Index Report 2017 ranks 127 countries on their ability to deliver secure, affordable, sustainable energy.
  • The index ranked 127 countries based on their ability to provide energy across three dimensions of the energy triangle namely economic growth and development, environmental sustainability, and energy access and security.

Business & Economy

Assam govt, SBI sign MoU over housing, educational loan at subsidized interest rates

  • The state government of Assam has signed two MoUs with Mumbai based State Bank of India(SBI) to provide housing loan and education loan for its employees
  • Highlights :
    i. Housing loan at the interest rates of 5% for women employees
    ii. Housing loan at the interest rates of  5.5 % for men and
    iii. Education loan for higher education for their children at 4% interest rate
    iv.  The maximum limit of the housing loan is Rs 15 lakh and Education loan is Rs.10 lakh

South Indian Bank introduces Aadhar-based payment app

  • Aim: To promote cashless digital transactions
  • SIB M-Pay will enables all bank account holders to send and receive money from their Smartphone without bank account information.
  • It required only Aadhar numberof the beneficiary
  • This feature will be a major step s towards a ‘Cashless Society’ and Aadhar ID plays a key role in Digital India initiatives

India Notifies Amended Tax Treaty With Singapore

  • Government of India has officially notified the third Protocol amending India-Singapore Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA)
  • The India-Singapore DTAA will provide source based taxation of capital gains arising on sale of shares in a company.
  • This will curb revenue loss, prevent double non-taxation and streamline the flow of investments.
  • It would facilitate relieving of economic double taxation in transfer pricing cases.
  • It also inserts Article 9(2)in the DTAA which would facilitate relieving of economic double taxation in transfer pricing cases.

Awards

Frenchmen Yves Meyer Wins 2017 Abel Prize for Wavelets Theory

  • Yves Meyer, a French mathematician, was honored with the 2017 Abel Prize, given by Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters.
  • He was honored the prestigious award for his contribution in the development of the mathematical theory of wavelets.

Ed Sheeran To Receive Songwriters Hall Of Fame 2017 Award

  • English singer-songwriter and record producer Ed Sheeran from UK will be honoured with the Songwriters Hall of Fame’s 2017 Hal David Starlight Award.
  • The Hal David Starlight Award was created in 2004 in honor of Songwriters Hall Chairman Emeritus Hal David .

Indian Journalist Ravish Kumar Conferred with First Kuldip Nayar Journalism Awards 

  • Ravish Kumar, the senior executive editor of NDTV India, was awarded the inaugural Kuldip Nayar Journalism Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution in the world of Journalism.
  • In the event organised by the Gandhi Peace Foundation,Ravish was presented the prestigious award by veteran journalist Kuldip Nayar after whom the award has been named.
  • Ravish has earlier won several prestigious awards including the Ramnath Goenka Award in 2013. He was also awarded the best journalist of the year 2015 by Mumbai press club.

Science & Technology

NASA Plans to Send Futuristic Atomic Clock to Space by 2017 End

  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)is set to send its next-generation atomic clock into space by the end of 2017 which is a key advance for safely navigating future human exploration of the solar system.
  • NASA scientists stated that timekeeping plays a critical role in spacecraft navigation and the atomic clock will be especially important for future deep space missions.
  • The atomic clock will enable “one-way” tracking so the spacecraft does not need to send the signal back to Earth.
  • The Deep Space Atomic Clock would also improve the precision and quantity of the radio data used by scientists for determining a planet’s gravity field and probing its atmosphere.

Environment and Ecology

Mysterious Night Parrot Sighted in Western Australia for First Time in 100 Years

  • It is the first verified sighting of the bird in WA for almost 100 years. The Night Parrot was green and yellow with black barred feathers
  • The scientists hope that more such Night Parrot population live in those areas relatively undisturbed by human-caused habitat degradation or feral animals.
  • The night parrot  with scientific name Pezoporus occidentalis, is a small parrot endemic to the continent of Australia.
  • It is well known as being one of the most elusive and mysterious birds in the world, with no known sightings of the bird between 1912 and 1979.

Sports Current Affairs 

Ankur Mittal Clinches Gold in Double Trap Event in ISSF World Cup Mexico

  • Indian shooter Ankur Mittal won the gold medal at the International Shooting Sport Federation Shotgun World Cup in the men’s double trap event
  • With this, India got its first medal of the competition where it has sent a nine-member squad.
  • Australian James Willet managed 73 to settle for the Silver, while Chinese Ying won Bronze shooting a score of 52, before being eliminated after 60 targets.

India Bags 8 Medals in IPC Athletics Grand Prix 2017

  • During the course of event, Indian para athletes won total 8 Medals including 3 Gold, 1 Silver and 4 Bronze.
  • With this India has been ranked 7th among 48 participating countries in terms of medal tally.
  • Sundar Singh Gurjar  won a gold in both men’s Javelin Throw F-46 and Discus Throw F-46 competitions.
  • The third Indian gold was bagged by Narender Ranbir in men’s Javelin Throw F-44 with an effort of 47.75m.
  • Anandan Gunasekaran (Silver) in 400m Men T-42/44/46
  • Ramkaran Singh (Bronze) in 800m Men T-13/20
  • Surjit Singh (Bronze) in Shotput Men F-40/41/42
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