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KERALA government Imposes “FAT TAX” on Junk Foods
- ‘fat tax’ of 14.5 %on food such as burgers, pizzas, donuts, sandwiches and pasta, sold through branded restaurants.
- first-of-its-kind move in the country
- tax is supposed to add about Rs 10 crore to the tax revenueof state per year.
- fat tax” is concerned with issues related to public health more than revenue generation.
- introduction of fat tax, as a measure to curb the consumption of junk food among people
- Some countries like Denmark and Hungary even implemented it. Denmark, however, scrapped it later.
- tax may certainly be a disincentive to the massive change in lifestyles of those suffering from obesity,
- it may also be uncomfortable for those who are healthy and occasionally consume fast food.
Cyber cell to check online abuse
- cyber-cellto check the online abuse and harassment of women and children on social media platforms.
- aftermath of the meeting with the Team of twitter Indiait was decided that the complaints received which are of a grave nature, will be reported to twitter for necessary action
- A range of issues been discussed about the empowerment of women and children to deal with abuse, harassment and hateful conduct on social media.
Rs 12,000 crore anti-recession package in Kerala
- a Rs 12,000-crorerescue package for the state in view of the Gulf crisis and recessionary trends in the state. Around Rs 2,500 crore will be used this financial year.
- state is facing serious financial crisis after the previous government failed to collect around Rs 23,900 crore as tax during the past three years
- The government aims to bring in legislative amendment for the purpose and attract investment from the public.
- Rs 500 crore to expedite development ofAzhikkal port. It has also ensured availability of money for development of Vizhinjam International Cargo Shipment Port, Thiruvananthapuram.
Controversial “BIG BROTHER LAW” signed by Vladimir Putin in RUSSIA
- controversial “anti-terrorist”legislation adopted by the lower and upper houses of parliament in late June, despite the flurry of criticism from opposition-minded circles and the serious concerns expressed by Russian telecom and internet companies
- measures, posted online Thursday by the government, boost the surveillance powers for the security services by requiring communication providers to store users’ calls, messages, photographs and videos for six months, as well as metadata for up to three years.
- Laws include increasing government powers of surveillance, strengthening the punishmentfor inciting or justifying terrorism online and increasing the number of crimes with which children between the ages of 14 and 17 can be charged.
- passage of the bills through Russia’s lower and upper houses of parliament sent shockwaves through the internet and telecoms industries.
- The laws were developed by ultra-conservative United Russia lawmaker Irina Yarovaya and Federation Council member Viktor Ozerov.
China completes Asia’s longest single cave, double track tunnel
- Asia’s longest 16-km single tunnelthat has double tracks for high-speed trains in northwest Shaanxi province of the country.
- tunnel cuts through the Qinling Mountains, It is part of a high-speed rail line that links Xi’an, the provincial capital and Chengdu in China’s southwest Sichuan province.
- 643-km long line has a running speed of 250 km per hour, will slash the travel time between the two cities from 16 hoursto just three hours.
Nitin Gadkari visits US
- This is his maiden visit to the US in his capacity as Union Minister.
- Week-long visit to Unites States to at attracting billions of dollars in Foreign Direct Investment.
- visit aimed at consolidation and expanding India’s relations with the US by improving bilateral cooperation in infrastructure sector.
- minister will envisage investment opportunities in the Indian maritime sector and invite US investments in building ports, port-led industrialization, coastal economic zones, and construction of new berths/terminals.
Bilateral Meeting between Commerce & Industry Minister and Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, UK
- Post Brexit, FTA with UKwill be a fresh exercise & work on FTA with EU will continue with a re-calibrated approach the minister conveyed.
- both sides conveyed hope to take proactive steps to deepen their ties and engagement in near future. In the meeting range of issues had been discussed.
Business and Economy
SIDBI partners with Yes Bank for loan guarantee
- partnership with YES Bankto guarantee 75% of loans of up to Rs 15 crore extended to energy efficiency projects under the WORLD BANK
- Aim:To transform the energy efficiency (EE) market in India by promoting increased level of EE investments, particularly through energy service performance contracting (ESPC) delivered through Energy Service Companies (ESCOs).
- SIDBI, set up on April 2, 1990 under Small Industries Development Bank of India Act, 1989.
- SIDBI was incorporated initially as a wholly owned subsidiary of Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI).
ICICI SECURITIES tops IPO Ratings
- ICICI Securities hastopped the Initial Public Offering (IPO) league table in the first half of 2016.
- ICICI Securities isICICI Bank’s investment banking arm.
- ICICI Securities has managed five IPOs to help rise around Rs 1,216 crore for companies getting listed.
- ICICI Securities had ended sixth in the IPO league table.Kotak Investment Banking, which was in pole position last year, is currently second, with four deals worth Rs 1,036 crore.
Rajasthan ties up with Applicate IT Solutions To help village retailers access B2B ecommerce
- Rajasthangovernment has joined hands with business-to-business (B2B) ecommerce firm Applicate IT Solutions to enable 35,000 e-mitra kiosks in the state for traders and retailers to procure products directly from manufacturers.
- e-mitra kioskslaunched in 2011 by the state government allows villagers to access government services such as licenses and passport services.
- a proprietary platform of the company will be added to the e-mitra kiosks that will enable traders and retailers in towns, cities and villages to access products directly from the manufacturers and at best rates.
- Out of the 35,000 plus kiosks, nearly 18,000 are located in smaller villages in Rajasthan and now they could access FMCG or any other products via these kiosks.
People in News
Phiroz Vandrevala steps down as TCS director
- Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has announced that its Non-Executive Director Phiroz Vandrevalaresigned from the company with immediate effect.
- He had been a director on the TCS board since September 2007.
- Vandrevala will continue with this role as the Vice-Chairman and MD of Diligenta which is TCS subsidiary.
Pakistani philanthropist Abdul Sattar Edhi dies
- Edhi was born in Gujarat in British India, Edhi and his Muslim family moved to Pakistan in 1947 during partition.
- Edhi foundation was at the lead of the response last year when a devastating heat wave struck Karachi, a city of about 20 million people.
- Foundation provides several free social services, including ambulances, orphanages and support for the elderly and disabled.
Kerala’s Radhika Menon: First Woman in the World to Bag Bravery Award at Sea
- first woman in the worldto receive the Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea from the International Maritime Organization (IMO)
- Radhika Menon:She was at the helm of oil tanker ‘Sampurna Swarajya’ of Shipping Corporation of India.
- Five years ago, she became the first woman to captain a ship of the Indian Merchant Navy.
- annual Award was established by IMO to provide international recognition for those who, at the risk of losing their own life, perform acts of exceptional bravery, displaying outstanding courage in attempting to save life at sea or in attempting to prevent or mitigate damage to the marine environment.
Science and Technology
HD 131399Ab – A Strange Planet Found by the Astronomers
- strange planet in a faraway solar system that contains not just only one sun, but
- distant planet, named HD 131399Ab, by far the widest known orbit within a multi-star system. The discovery is published online by the journal Science.
- Located about 340 light years from Earth in the constellation Centaurs, HD 131399Ab is believed to be about 16 million years old.
- Having a temperature of 850 Kelvin (about 1,070 degrees Fahrenheit or 580 degrees Celsius) and weighing in at an estimated four Jupiter masses
- one of the coldest and least massive directly imaged exoplanets.
- Scientists used SPHERE instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope to image the first planet ever found in a wide orbit inside a triple-star system
Environment and Ecology
Bornean Orangutan Now ‘Critically Endangered’: IUCN
- This change means that both species of orangutan now face an exceptionally high risk of extinction in the wild.
- Species has declared Endangered as a reason of deforestation, palm oil plantations and hunting posing a serious threat to its continued existence.
- These Species share approximately 97% of their DNAwith humans.
- Bornean females only reproduce once every six to eight years, as it is the longest birth interval of any land mammal
- Orangutan numbers are slow to rebound in the wake of meaningful improvements.
Joshna Chinappa breaks into top 10 in PSA World Squash Rankings
- Top Indian squash player Joshna Chinapparose to a career high 10th position in the latest PSA world rankings,
- second Indian to break the top-10 barrier after longtime India teammate Dipika Pallikal.
- Dipika stays put at 19th this month and Sachika Ingale of India has dropped one place to be 82nd.
- newly-crowned Egyptian women’s world champion has replaced England’s Laura Massaro from the pinnacle to become the second-youngest World No. 1.