6th Apr 2017 – Current Affairs Today


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National Current Affairs

Government withdraws subsidy to mild hybrids under FAME scheme

  • Benefits to given to mild hybrid vehicles under FAME India scheme have been withdrawn with effect from 1st April 2017. The notification also clarified that decision does not apply to sales of mild hybrid vehicles made to retail purchasers up to 31st March 2017.
  • This news has negatively affected Maruti Suzuki– the largest car maker in India, whose popular models ‘Ertiga’ and ‘Ciaz’ use hybrid technology and were eligible for benefits under FAME India scheme.

Malaysian Prime Minister Mohd Najib Tun Razak’s five day visit to India

  • Seven MoUs that were signed between Malaysia and India.
  • Out of the 7 MoUs signed between India and Malaysia, the most significant was the one between Andhra Pradesh Economic Development Board and MIGHT Technology Nurturing Sdn. Bhd (MTN) for implementation of 4th Generation Technology Park in Andhra Pradesh.

Polythene manufactured below 50 microns is banned by Jammu & Kashmir Government

  • Jammu & Kashmir state government has banned the usage of polythene bags which is manufactured below 50 microns from April 3, 2017.
  • The government also stated that each plastic carry bag and multilayered packaging must have the name, registration number of the manufacturer and thickness of the material printed on it in English.
  • Violator of the Act will be liable for punishment up to one month in jail or fine of Rs 5000 or both.
  • New guidelines and regulations were also formed that would facilitate proper recycling of plastic waste, reducing its impact on the ecology.
  • Street vendors must get registered with the concerned Municipal body for trading in the products of polythene and has to pay a fee of Rs 48000 annually

International Current Affairs

India ranks 3rd in WADA doping charts for the Year 2015

  • India has been ranked 3rdin the doping violation report published by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) for the year 2015.
  • The report stated that, 117 athletes from India have been punished after testing positive for banned substances.
  • India held the same position in the year 2013 and 2014. The urine samples taken from Indian athletes were used by WADA to find out the violation. The top spot is held by Russia followed by Italy

Indian Army Chief conferred with Nepal Army honorary title in Kathmandu

  • On his visit to Nepal, the Army Chief was presented with Honorary General of the Nepalese Army title by the President of Nepal 
  • The historic tradition is continuing uninterrupted since its inception in 1969 which shows special relationship between the Indian and the Nepalese Army.
  • When Chief of Army Staff of Nepalese Army, General Rajendra Chettri visited India, he was presented with Honorary General of the Indian Army on February 3, 2016.
  • The main aim of this visit is to strengthen India’s defense cooperation.

Business & Economy

ICICI Bank and Axis Bank sold Rs 1800 crore of loans of Ballarpur to Edelweiss Asset Re-Company

  • Market leaders ICICI Bank and Axis Bank sold Rs 1800 crore worth loans of paper maker Ballarpur Industries to Edelweiss Asset Reconstruction Company.
  • This is the first time, a potential bad loan being sold off to an Asset Reconstruction Company at book value.
  • Axis Bank sold loans of 1200 crore and ICICI Bank sold loans of Rs.600 crore.
  • The bond is prepared as the amount will be repaid over five to seven years depending on the rate of recovery.
  • In February, 2017, India’s credit rating agency downgraded Ballarpur Industries debt by assigning it a D-rating, which led to the selling of loan to Edelweiss.

New Rs 200 denominated notes proposal cleared by RBI

  • India’s central bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has cleared a proposal to introduce new currency notes of Rs 200.
  • The proposal was cleared during the RBI board meeting held in March, 2017. The information was passed by officials from RBI.
  • The process of producing the Rs 200 notes will begin after June, if the central government officially approves the new denomination.
  • The move was made to reduce the cash crunch after demonetization and Rs 200 will be the 2nd new denomination after Rs 2000.

New set of surface-to-air missiles for Navy- Central Government clears proposal

  • Central government has approved the procurement of a fresh batch of Barak surface-to-air missiles for its naval warships
  • The missiles will be procured under buy global category from Rafael Advance Defense Systems Limited of Israel at an approximate cost of 77 million USD.
  • DAC has proposed to approve capital acquisition proposals of 133 million USD.

People in News

 Mahesh Kumar Jain named as IDBI bank MD and CEO

  • Former MD and CEO of Indian Bank, Mahesh Kumar Jain took charge as the MD and CEO of Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI) Bank
  • The move was focused mainly on retail lending and resolution of bad assets if IDBI bank which were the key priorities.
  • IDBI bank booked a net loss of Rs 1958 crore in April-December 2016. The losses were Rs 3665 crore in the year 2015-16.

Indian Cricketer MS Dhoni named CEO of Gulf Oil for 1 day

  • Former Indian cricket team skipper MS Dhoni became an acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Gulf Oil India just for a day on April 3, 2017.
  • As a CEO of the company for the day, Dhoni has attended all the special meetings of the company.
  • Mahendra Singh Dhoni was also named as the brand ambassador for Gulf Oil in the year 2011.

Brayan Jimenez banned for life-time by FIFA

  • Brayan Jimenez, a former member of the FIFA Committee for Fair Play and Social Responsibility was banned for life-time by Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA)
  • He has been banned for offences which include bribery and corruption. The information was shared by FIFA ethics committee.
  • It has been stated that, Brayan Jimenez was involved in the biggest corruption scandal in the history of the global soccer body.
  • The total bribe collected by Jimenez was hundreds of thousands of dollars as per the statement given by U.S. district attorney.

DGP Geetha Johri – Gujarat’s first woman police chief

  • Director General of Police (DGP) Geetha Johri was appointed as Police Chief (in-charge) of Gujarat
  • By this, Johari has become the 1st woman IPS officer to be appointed as the Police Chief in Gujarat.
  • Johri had replaced PP Pandey, who resigned as the DGP after his appointment was challenged by former Police Julio Riberio in the Supreme Court.
  • Johri, a 1982 batch IPS officer, is slated to retire on November 30 this year, giving her a short tenure of less than eight months.
  • In 1990, Johri raided the den of slain underworld don Abdul Latif in the highly sensitive Dariyapur area of Ahmadabad and managed to arrest one his key aides.

Science & Technology

BS-IV Grade Fuel launched by Central Government after BS-III ban

  • Bharat stage (BS)-IV Grade fuel was introduced after BS-III compatible vehiclessales and registration were banned by Central government from April 1, 2017
  • The launch was made in 12 cities of India. They were Varanasi, Vijayawada, Durgapur, Gorakhpur, Imphal, Bhopal, Ranchi, Madurai, Nagpur, Patna, Guwahati and Shillong.
  • Oil Marketing Companies (OMC) are spending Rs 90000 croreon phase-wise up-gradation to BS-IV fuel production.

Environment and Ecology

Clean Environment with the help of Fungus that eats plastic

  • Researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences have identified a soil fungus which uses enzymes to rapidly break down plastic materials.
  • Aspergillus tubingensis is a fungus, which ordinarily lives in the soil. In laboratory trials, the researchers found that it also grows on the surface of plastics.
  • The fungus secretes enzymes onto the surface of the plastic, and these break the chemical bonds between the plastic molecules.
  • Currently, the researchers are working to determine the ideal conditions for fungal growth and plastic degradation since there are several conditions that slow down the degradation.