26th May 2017 – Current Affairs Today


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National Current Affairs

Recent Approvals by Central government – May 26 2017

  • Cabinet has given its approval to raise Bonds of Rs. 2360 crores for renewable energy through the Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA) during the 2017-18.
  • Cabinet approves Joint Declaration of Intent between Germany and India regarding cooperation in the sector of alternative medicine
  • Union cabinet has approved phasing out of Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB).
  • Cabinet has approved the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Directorate General of Health Services under Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare National Transplant Organization, Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality, Spain on cooperation in the organ and tissue procurement and transplantation services.
  • Union Cabinet has given its approval for establishment of new All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Kamrup, Assam.

Pondycherry CM Presents Tax-Free Budget For 2017-2018

  • Total budget outlay of Rs.6945 crore comprises Rs. 4,445 crore for non-plan head and Rs. 2,500 crore under plan.
  • Puducherry Government will contribute Rs.4022 crore from its own resources, while Central assistance will be of Rs.1411 crore.
  • Grants under the centrally-sponsored schemes (CSS) including the Central Road Fund (CRF) has been estimated at Rs.361 crore.
  • 1151 crore would be raised through open market borrowing and from other financial institutions.
  • During fiscal 2016-17, Puducherry Government incurred expenditure to the tune of Rs.6144 crore, which is the highest ever spending in the history of the Union Territory of Puducherry.

India’s first underwater rail tunnel completed ahead of schedule

  • India’s first underwater rail tunnel was being constructed  under the Hooghly river.
  • The deadline for the completion of this underwater tunnel was of July 2017.
  • It got completed on 23 May 2017, ahead of the scheduled time.
  • It is constructed for establishing metro link between Howrah and Kolkata.
  • The entire project is 16.6 km long, out of which 10.8 km runs under the ground and out of this 502 meters is under the water.
  • The total project cost is around Rs 5000 crore.

International Current Affairs

Mumbai, Dhaka among world’s most crowded cities says WEF

  • According to World Economic Forum (WEF) citing UN Habitat data the list is topped by Dhaka.
  • Dhaka has a population density of 44,500 people per square kilometer.
  • Mumbai has a population density of 31,700 people per square kilometre at the second place.
  • Medellin in Columbia ranked third with 19,700 people per square kilometer followed by Manila at the 4th place with a density of 14,800.

Taiwan court rules in favor of same-sex marriage, first in Asia

  • Taiwan’s constitutional court has declared that same-sex couples have the right to legally marry.
  • The court gave the country’s parliament a period of two years for laws to be amended to allow same-sex marriage.

Business & Economy

SBI launches national hackathon

  • The main aim to launch National hackathaon is to come up with innovative ideas and solutions for the banking sector.
  • It will focus on the business value driven by technologies like predictive analytics, fin-tech, blockchain, digital payments, IOT, artificial intelligence, machine learning, BOTS and robotic process automation.
  • RBI allows co-operative banks to issue mobile wallets
  • Reserve Bank of India announced that it has decided to permit all licensed co-operative banks having their own ATM network to issue semi-closed prepaid payment instruments PPIs like mobile wallets.
  • RBI has also laid down following criteria:
  • Banks should be core banking or CBS compliant
  • The net non-performing assets should be less than 3%
  • The bank should be profitable in the previous financial year.
  • There should be no monetary penalty being imposed on the entity during the last two financial years.
  • comprehensive customer grievance redressal mechanism should be set up.
  • The bank should have internal and audit inspection processes both for its branches as well as the head office.

BHEL commissions 270 MW thermal unit in Maharashtra

  • BHEL has been a major partner in the power development program of the state.
  • It has commissioned 16,000 mw of power generation capacity in Maharashtra

FSSAI allows up to 5 per cent vegetable fats in chocolates

  • FSSAI has issued notification permitting addition of vegetable fats (from sal, kokum, mango kernel, palm oil, mahua oil dhupa, phulwara, dharambe, etc) to a maximum 5 per cent of the finished product.
  • Solvent Extractors Association, premier vegetable oil Association, has been pursuing the authorities for over two decades to treat vegetable fats as coco butter equivalents for the purpose of making chocolates, arguing that it will boost local collection of tree borne oilseeds and support the livelihood of tribal villages.
  • Vegetable fats have physical properties similar to coco butter and are widely used by chocolate makers in Europe.

Twitter introduces customizable Direct Message Card for businesses

  • Twitter has introduced a new customizable Direct Message Card for businesses.
  • It is used to promote and share bots and other customer experiences built in Direct Messages.
  • This new card will help businesses to drive discovery of experiences both through Promoted Tweets and Organic sharing.

RIL leads 58 Indian firms in Forbes Global 2000 latest list

  • Reliance Industries Ltd.(RIL) is the highest ranked Indian firm in 2017 Forbes ‘Global 2000’ list out of a total of 58 Indian companies that have featured in this list.
  • Reliance Industries ranked 106th on 2017 Forbes ‘Global 2000’ list.
  • Among Indian companies, Reliance Industries was followed State Bank of India at 244 and ONGC at 246.
  • Indian private sector banks HDFC Bank(258), ICICI Bank (310), Axis Bank (463) and Kotak Mahindra Bank (744) are among the top 20 Indian companies in the overall list.
  • 40% of companies in 2017 Forbes ‘Global 2000’ list are from China and US.
  • Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) topped the 2017 Forbes ‘Global 2000’ list.

People in News

P V Sindhu elected to Badminton World Federation Athletes’ Commission

  • Indian badminton player V. Sindhu became the second Indian to be inducted in the Badminton World Federation (BWF) Athletes’ Commission.
  • India’s Saina Nehwal is already in the BWF Athletes’ Commission.
  • PV Sindhu, along with Marc Zweibler of Germany and Kristy Gilmour of Scotland will serve a four-year term in this role.

Google’s Rajan Anandan is now IAMAI Chairman

  • Google Vice-President Rajan Anandan is the new Chairman of Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI)
  • Deep Kalra, Chairman & Group CEO, MakeMyTrip, is the new Vice Chairman of IAMAI.
  • He will replace Kunal Shah,Co-founder & Chief Executive Officer, FreeCharge.

Government makes 129 ‘non-performing’ officers retire in Public interest

  • The government has forced 129 government officers to retire for non-performance in the past few months. 
  • In total 30 officers from Group A and 99 officers from Group B has been forced to retire in the past few months.
  • The government analyzed the service records of over 24,000 Group A officers and 42,251 Group B officers for performance.
  • As per the government sources, the government will further look into the service records of another 34,451 Group A officers and 42,521 Group B officers.
  • The review has been done by the central government to check the performance of its officers.

Socialist Lenin Moreno sworn in as President of Ecuador

  • Moreno is one of the world’s few paraplegic heads of state and he said in his speech that he will continue anti-poverty programs.

Environment and Ecology

After 84 years, cobra lily rediscovered in Nilgiris

  • The Cobra Lily is rediscovered in Nilgiris after 84 years.
  • Cobra Lily can be found only in a small area measuring less than 10 square kilometres in the Nilgiris.
  • This is probably the only member of the Arisaema family of flowers to have a translucent spathe.
  • The Toda tribals of the Nilgiris have an embroidery motif known as the ‘podwarshk’, which resembles it.

Sports Current Affairs

 Egyptian Omar becomes first amputee to swim across Red Sea’s Gulf of Aqaba

  • Egyptian swimmer Omar Hegazy has become the first amputee to swim across Red Sea’s 20 kilometer Aqaba Gulf from Egypt to Jordan.
  • Aqaba Gulf is a large gulf at the northern tip of the Red Sea.